Ask the experts: Tim and Jerry

by Gary Shelton on September 21, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, NFL, Tampa Bay Bucs

Here at GarySheltonsports.com, we have doubled our experts with the addition of former Bucs' personnel director and former Seahawks general manager Tim Ruskell. He joins his old friend and co-worker Jerry Angelo, a former personnel director for the Bucs and former general manager of the Bears. Each week, Angelo and Ruskell answer your questions regarding the NFL. Send your questions to GarySheltonsports@gmail.com with "ask the expert" in the subject line. The most interesting questions will be selected.

Thursday, 4 a.m.

After two weeks, Adrian Peterson has 14 carries for the New Orleans Saints  for all of 44 yards (3.1 yards per carry). Is this the case of fitting in with a new team, or trying to deal with being 32? I mean, he’s tied for 53rd in the league.

Tim: May be a tad early to make any definitive assessments but this marriage was fraught with peril from the start.  The Saints go as Brees goes and have generally used the run game as a set up to the passing game.  They like to use the “running back by committee” concept but will ride a hot hand at times.  Peterson has always been the “lead dog” type back who needs his carries to get going.  Nothing, nothing, nothing than “boom” 75 and a TD has been a constant theme in his career.  The Saints get the nothing part and yank him.  32 is real and he may not have the long runs in him anymore but I do think he is better than this and just landed with the wrong team.

Jerry: I really don’t know what to make of it so far. They knew what he was when they signed him. I thought they would have more of an expanded package for

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him, particularly on first down and short yardage or why else sign him. It’s still early in the season, but the Saints aren’t a good football team. They have bigger problems than what to do with AP.

LaDainian Tomlinson suggested that Zeke Elliott “quit” against Denver in his nine carry, eight yard effort against Denver. Do you buy it? Is it possible that Elliott has as many problems on the field as off?

Jerry: Elliott is a very selfish player. He was in college and that hasn’t changed. His persona has only gotten worse given his great rookie year. You are now seeing who he is as person and teammate. He needs to a good talking too and he needs to get his act together now. He needs to declare who he wants to be now and going forward. The ball is in his hands. It’s up to him to run with it, but not for his glory, but the reverence of being on a team. A team player finds great joy in being part of something bigger than himself.

Tim: From what I saw I agree with Tomlinson.  Elliot looked unfocused and uninterested as the game wore on.  All of these traits were there in college to varying degrees, especially the off field stuff.  Let’s not act overly surprised by this behavior.

Eight teams in the NFL are 0-2. Which of them has the best chance of righting their ship and making the playoffs: the Bengals, the Chargers, the Browns, the Saints, the 49ers, the Colts, the Bears or the Jets?

Tim: I’d say the Colts because I do believe their D has improved, and I do believe that Luck will return .  The key to the season is when.  Luckily, (I won’t say it) they are in a division without a true consensus champ so if they can stay close to .500 they’ll have a chance once the QB returns.  Also, I liked Brissett in college and I thought that was a good move on the Colts part.

Jerry: You know they all look poor. Probably the Chargers given they have the best quarterback of the bunch with a decent defense.

The Dolphins’ Lawrence Timmons missed Miami’s opener, and the team didn’t know where he was. Does he have a future with Miami?

Tim: He was there!  He was the kicker for the Chargers in disguise!  He should get a raise.  To answer your question….no, he has no future.

Most of us expected Seattle to start strong, but they’ve scored 21 points in a 1-1 beginning. Is there a problem, or will the Seahawks catch fire eventually?

Jerry: The Seahawks are a good team, but not a dominant one. They don’t have any real play makers, including their highly paid quarterback, on offense. I like  Wilson, but he isn’t special. They have problems with their offensive line, so it’s hard to sustain any kind of rhythm. Without a special player to go to everything they gain is done the hard way on offense. Their defense is still very good. Their games will be close and go down to the wire, but that’s all right, because they are used to winning that way and have won a lot of games with that formula.

Tim: They will be fine and they should win the division because they are in a bad one.  Their D is still very good and this kid Carson may give the running game a boost.  Biggest issue is the OL which is messing with Wilson and their passing game consistency.

Seven teams are 2-0. Which will be the last team to lose: The Falcons, the Panthers, the Broncos, the Chiefs, the Raiders, the Steelers or the Ravens?

Jerry: I’m going with the Falcons. They have the best overall balance. Their head coach is hungry and wants to prove something this year after last years Super Bowl debacle.

Tim: I’d say the Falcons followed by the Chiefs.  Falcons are better on D and explosive on “O” plus they have that big chip on their shoulder.  For my runner up I threw a dart and it hit the Chiefs.  That’s science.

Rookie Kareem Hunt is first in the NFL in rushing. Rookie Dalvin Cook is third. Rookie Leonard Fournette is fifth. Which of the three will outgain the other two before the year is finished?

Tim: I’d go with Hunt for his size and his OL.  Fournette is a big man as well but does not have as good a line.  Cook is the most talented but is prone to injury and will be used in tandem as well as in the passing game.

Jerry: All of them are in a good situation to amass big yards. I’m going with Fournette. He is the best equipped physically to carry the load for an offense. The Jaguars have to run the ball to win and he’s the guy that’s going to get the bulk of the carries.

In order, who are the best three teams in the NFL?

Jerry: New England, Atlanta, Kansas City,

Tim: Atlanta, Kansas City, Denver.

Reports say that the Bengals players want Colin Kaepernick to join their team to take the place of Andy Dalton. Would that improve the Bengals?

Tim:  No.  Changing OCs would improve their team.  Oh they did that?  There you go.

Jerry: Kaepernick is not the answer for any teams woes. Bad teams are bad for a lot of reasons and at this point in the season there are no quick fixes. That’s how losers think and thats what the Bengals are … losers.

The Saints have given up 777 yards passing in two games. Will that get better?

Jerry: No, not really. They have been bad so long on defense, particularly against the pass. It tells me they don’t know what they’re doing. They have had plenty of time to fix it, but can’t. They are the ‘Aints, when it comes to defense.

Tim: No.  They have a lousy defense.  I say those numbers will remain consistent throughout the season.

The predictions

Tampa Bay at Minnesota

Tim: Tampa.  D is strong. O is at the very least functional.  Minnesota may be dead in the water.

Jerry: The Bucs, the Vikings have holes and their offense isn’t as good as people think.

Seattle at Tennessee

Jerry: Going with the home team. Big win in Jacksonville will propel them to another one.

Tim: Tennessee - Wishful thinking perhaps.

N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia

Tim: Philly - I’ll be painting my driveway…let me know who won.

Jerry: The Eagles will sore over the winless G-men.

Dallas at Arizona

Jerry:  This is an easy one, the Cowboys. The only way you get egg off your face is to win the desert.

Tim: Dallas - Still painting

 

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