Fancy Boys founder Matt Drufke doesn’t know anything about football. Lucky for him, Brandon Andreasen and Jack Baker do.
Each week, Matt emails Brandon and Jack NFL questions, they then immediately go and make fun of his lack of knowledge in a secret group chat. They then go and answer the questions. Here are those answers.
Let’s start by talking about kickers. This year saw Robbie Gould become the highest-paid kicker of all time, only to see the Ravens give Justin Tucker more money weeks later. You can say kickers only see a few snaps and aren’t worth the money, but without Eddy Pineiro, the Bears would be 0-2. Should parents start taking their kids out of soccer to be field goal kickers? Or, to put it better, is the trend of paying premiere kickers making more money going to be a trend we see more often in the NFL?
Brandon – I think we are already seeing the specialization of kicking more and more at the developmental level. Part of it has to do with the explosion of youth soccer. Teenagers are showing up in high school having spent summers in kicking camps and playing multiple sports.
As this generation trickles up to the college and pro level, we are going to see a level of competition that doesn’t currently exist. There could be as many as six teams trying out kickers this week. I think demand will definitely raise pay for kickers, just as soon as quality catches up to demand.
Jack – way too much time was spent this offseason talking and worrying about kickers. They’re like bullpens in baseball, one year they’re good, one year they’re not. If you find one that’s consistently good, pay them a lot and keep them forever. Don’t cut them because they’re an outspoken union rep. Fuck John Fox.
Back to the Bears: Jack has been stressing the need to get Tarik Cohen more involved in the offense. He had 4 carries for 19 yards. And, while Mitch Trubisky didn’t throw any interceptions, he had a QBR of 29.9 (16-27, 120 yards, 0 TDs). What can the Bears do, if anything, to improve this offense? Or does the path to the playoffs rest on Pineiro’s foot?
Jack – On Sunday, the Bear ran the ball 29 times for 153 yards and their only TD of the season. Teams that average over 5 yards per carry usually do pretty well in the NFL. They need to keep running the ball and then incorporate some play action and rollouts to get Trubisky moving and in a place where he feels comfortable. Trey Burton was still limited with his groin injury, and so getting him healed up should help as well. The less Ben Braunecker we see on the field the better.
Brandon-I’ll say this about Mitch Trubisky: When the game is on the line, he finds a way to make the big throw. He did it in the playoff game last year and he did it Sunday. I have no idea why that doesn’t translate to the other 59 minutes of the game.
I believe this is a Matt Nagy problem as much as a Mitch problem. Trubisky has much better numbers when he is on the run, which goes against the grain of what you would expect. Trubisky isn’t fazed by the moment. That’s a good thing and a bad thing.
Let’s ask a couple of questions about some surprising 2-0 teams: Are the Bills for real? Are the 49ers a legitimate NFC threat? And can the Green Bay Packers keep winning games with their offense being this inconsistent?
Brandon-The Packers will keep winning, but Aaron Rodgers has the body language of a QB ready to murder his coach, which is rough considering Matt LaFleur has only been coach for two games.
Going into the season, the question mark surrounding the 49ers is whether quarterback Jimmy Garappolo was fully recovered from a torn ACL. He looks like he is starting to feel comfortable in the pocket, which isn’t a guarantee for quarterbacks. If Jimmy G puts up 4k passing yards and 30 touchdowns, they can contend for a wild card spot in the NFC.
The Bills are tougher to figure because they beat the Jets, who have one of the worst coaches in football, and the Giants, whose starting quarterback died 2 years ago, but nobody told them. I do think they are decent but their running game hinges on how badly Devin Singletary injured his hamstring on Sunday. That team isn’t going to win much with 82 year old Frank Gore as the featured back.
Jack – The Bills defense is for real. Josh Allen is basically Mitch Trubisky, if his dumb tweets from high school were racist instead of proclaiming a love for kissing titties. Like the Bears, the Bills will go as far as their not great QB will take them.
The 49ers have played two garbage teams (Buccaneers and Bengals) so who knows. Their talent on the defensive line should at least make them competitive in most games.
The Packers won a lot of football games with Mike McCarthy’s garbage offense, and they should be able to win a lot of games with Matt LaFleur’s offense. It should also help that they won’t have to go up against the Bears and Vikings defenses every week.
Let’s look at the bottom of the standings: Which 0-2 teams (Dolphins, Steelers, Bengals, Jaguars, Broncos, Giants, Redskins, Panthers) still have the hope to be playoff contenders? And which team will be looking to make a coaching change first?
Jack – None. Those teams all have serious flaws and/or major injury concerns. The Dolphins aren’t trying to win. Big Ben is now out for the year. The Bengals are the Bengals. Unfortunately for the Jaguars and mustachioed QB Gardener Minshew, memes don’t win football games. The Broncos just lost a heartbreaker to the Bears and their defense is having serious problems getting to the QB despite tremendous edge rushers. Also, Bryce Callahan is hurt to the surprise of now. The Giants are still playing Eli Manning because they’re stupid. Washington is a racist abomination that should be contracted from the NFL. And Cam Newton’s arm is probably going to fall off and take the Panthers season down with him.
The Giants should absolutely move on from Pat Shurmur and take their shitty GM with him. They need to clean house and bring in people who understand modern football. While seemingly every other team has figured out how to get great production from cheap running backs on rookie deals, the Giants spent last year’s second overall pick on Saquon Barkley and then immediately started out on a rebuild. NFL running backs only have so many carries before their bodies break down, and they’re going to ruin one of the most exciting players in the NFL while not winning football games. They drafted Daniel Jones for the future, but then aren’t playing him so he won’t get better. Nothing they do makes any sense and it’s time to clean house.
Brandon – Second question first. Ron Rivera of the Panthers should have been fired before the post game show started for his team putting up a piss poor effort against a garbage Buccaneers team. Jay Gruden of the Redskins will be fired if the Bears embarrass them on Monday Night Football next week.Of the teams that can bounce back, the Bengals have shown baseline ability to run an offense in a division that isn’t as good as people thought it was. I thought the Steelers sucked going into the season and they have done nothing to prove otherwise. The Jaguars are gonna murder each other. The Broncos are treading water, and the Dolphins deserve to be relegated to the Canadian football league.