Tag:Ike Taylor
Posted on: November 1, 2011 3:49 pm
Edited on: November 1, 2011 3:51 pm
 

Eye on Football NFL Awards: Week 8



Posted by Will Brinson



Every week, our NFL experts will hand out the Eye on Football hardware to the best of the best from the NFL week that was.

Week 8 NFL Awards
Expert Offense Defense STeams Coach
Freeman  McCoy Houston Peterson  Reid
Judge Jackson  Dareus Peterson Tomlin
Prisco  McCoy  Long Peterson Spags
Brinson  McCoy  Long Peterson Spags
Katzowitz Jackson Taylor Peterson Frazier
Wilson  McCoy Woodley Peterson Spags
Week 8's in the books and we're (almost/kind of) halfway home in the 2011 NFL season. Let's get to the hardware.

LeSean McCoy might have stayed in the game too long -- he was carrying the rock with the Eagles up a lot of points -- but it worked out for him here, as he nudged out the Rams Steven Jackson for our Eye on Offense Award, thanks to 185 rushing yards.

Chris Long clotheslined his way to the Eye on Defense Award, thanks to a trifecta of sacks against Saints quarterback Drew Brees in a stunning upset.

Long's coach Steve Spagnuolo was rewarded as well, as his gameplan against New Orleans, despite being horribly overmatched, resulted in the least predictable win of the NFL season thus far.

And rookie Patrick Peterson, though his team lost, picked up the Eye on Special Teams Award for his beasty 82-yard touchdown return.

Leave your votes in the comments below or scream angrily at us on Twitter @EyeOnNFL.

Eye on Offense Award
Mike Freeman Clark Judge
LeSean McCoy LeSean McCoy, RB, Eagles
The Cowboys allegedly had the top-ranked rushing defense. Then McCoy got a hold of it on Sunday night and by the time he was done with it left totally humiliated. McCoy had 30 carries for 185 yards and two scores. It was stunning to watch. The offensive line play, the play calling, the cutback running. The Cowboys are still licking their wounds.
Steven JacksonSteven Jackson, RB, Rams
First, he tells teammates what it will take to beat New Orleans. Then he demonstrates it, running for 159 yards and scoring twice in a stunning upset. Jackson is a terrific player on a not-so-terrific team, and it's games like this where we're reminded just how good the guy can be.
Pete Prisco Will Brinson
LeSean McCoy LeSean McCoy, RB, Eagles
He rushed for 185 yards on 30 carries and scored two touchdown in the Eagles' rout of the Cowboys. His 6.2 per-rush average is what really impresses me. McCoy is having an Offensive Player of the Year type of season.
LeSean McCoyLeSean McCoy, RB, Eagles
McCoy took advantage of a brilliant gameplan by Andy Reid (let Dallas' rushers get upfield and then cut Shady loose) for a career day, and he's now the only player in the NFL to score a TD in every game, after rolling for 185 yards and two touchdowns.
Josh Katzowitz Ryan Wilson
Steven JacksonSteven Jackson, RB, Rams
He was such a big part of getting the Rams off the schneid, I’d be foolish not to recognize him. From recovering teammates’ fumbles to rushing for 159 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries, Jackson did it all. He caught passes, he gained yards, he yelled at teammates. And most impressively, he helped lead St. Louis to a huge win against the Saints without the contributions of Sam Bradford
LeSean McCoy LeSean McCoy, RB, Eagles
The combination of the Eagles bye week, a renewed focus on the running game and Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan flapping his gums created a perfect storm that took the shape of Shady McCoy. Eight weeks into the season and the Eagles finally look like … the Dream Team. Maybe Andy Reid should serious consideration to, you know, committing to the running game.
Eye on Defense Award
Freeman Judge
Chris HoustonChris Houston, CB, Lions
Did his part to end the phony quarterback candicacy of Tim Tebow with a 100-yard interception return for a score. Houston did not "Tebow" which was good. No need to rub it in.
Marcel Dareus Marcel Dareus, DT, Bills
Now you know why the Bills took this guy with the third pick. It was a no-brainer. They wanted someone to plug the middle of the league's worst run defense, and Dareus is that someone. He had two-and-a-half sacks and three quarterbacks hits in Buffalo's rout of Washington, the first time Mike Shanahan has been shut out in the NFL.
Prisco Brinson
Chris LongChris Long, DE, Rams
He had three sacks against the Saints and spent the day in the backfield. Long is a relentless player who plays hard all the time, and that showed up against the Saints. He's getting better every year.
Chris LongChris Long, DE, Rams
Howie's kid was the cog in a Rams defense that quite unexpectedly shocked the world in their beatdown of the Saints, piling up three sacks on Drew Brees, including a third clothesline-like blow that's as brutal a sack as I've seen in a while.
Katzowitz Wilson
Ike Taylor Ike Taylor, CB, Steelers
There were others around the league with more impressive games. Guys who had big sack totals, those who mocked  the opposing quarterback. But Taylor was such a huge key in shutting down New England’s Wes Welker in the Steelers win. Welker was limited to six catches for 39 yards, his lowest output since Week 16 of last year, and Taylor was to blame.
LaMarr Woodley LaMarr Woodley, LB, Steelers
He only played two and a half quarters, but in that time he managed to harass Tom Brady into plenty of hurried throws, many of which were off target, and not more than 10 yards downfield. Woodley also had two sacks, giving him nine for the year, a total made even more impressive given that he had just 1.5 sacks through the first month of the season.
Eye on Special Teams Award
Freeman Judge
Patrick PetersonPatrick Peterson, WR/KR, Cardinals
An 82-yard punt return was one of several keys that sparked the biggest comeback in Baltimore Ravens history. If it wasn't for Peterson, Joe Flacco might still be getting booed. (Yes, I'm being a smartass.)
Patrick Peterson Patrick Peterson, CB/KR, Cardinals
For the second time this season he returns a punt for a touchdown, and while it wasn't enough to beat Baltimore it was enough to make the game interesting. Peterson is a special talent, with some regarding him as the best player in this year's draft. Peterson will be a premier cornerback. For now, he's a premier return specialist.
Prisco Brinson
Patrick PetersonPatrick Peterson, CB/KR, Cardinals
He returned a punt 82 yards for a touchdown against the Ravens, giving Arizona a 24-3 lead. They didn't hold on, but he still gets this award.
Patrick PetersonPatrick Peterson, CB/KR, Cardinals
Peterson became just the third rookie in NFL history to return two kicks of 80+ yards in a single season (Devin Hester and Craig Yeast are the others) with his ridiculous 82-yard TD return against the Ravens. A standout rookie in a fabulous rookie class.
Katzowitz Wilson
Patrick Peterson Patrick Peterson, CB/KR, Cardinals
Those who watched Peterson take a Ravens punt return back 82 yards for the touchdown won’t soon forget how easy the rookie first-round draft pick made it look. He looked so smooth, accelerating up the middle of the field and breaking five Baltimore tackles, that it was enough for me to award him this honor on the strength of just one play.
Patrick Peterson Patrick Peterson, CB/KR, Cardinals
He's still developing as a CB, but his ability on special teams is what makes him so dangerous. He shed five would-be tacklers on his touchdown return against the Ravens, and these weren't whiffed tackles. These were Ravens players who went from Peterson's shoulder pads, to his waste to his knees before ending up on the turf wondering what happened. It's too bad Peterson can't play quarterback, too.
Eye on Coaching Award
Freeman Judge
Andy ReidAndy Reid, HC, Eagles
Moved to 13-0 after bye weeks. Think about that for a moment. Here's a bye week. There's Andy Reid. Bye week + Reid = Win. There is no bigger guarantee in the NFL other than the Dolphins losing.

Mike Munchak Mike Tomlin, Steelers
He found a way to beat arch-nemesis New England ... er Tom Brady ... by remaining patient with his offensive game plan, controlling the clock and keeping Brady off the field. On defense, the Steelers were in man-to-man defense 70 percent of the time, bottling up Brady's receivers at the line, before unleashing the attack dogs on third down. Perfect.
Prisco Brinson
Steve SpagnuoloSteve Spagnuolo, HC, Rams
His team was 14-point dogs to the Saints on a day they were playing without their starting quarterback. So what happens? They dominate the game. They ran it, played good defense, and pulled off the upset for their first victory of the season. Who else can ever be mentioned here?   
Steve SpagnuoloSteve Spagnuolo, HC, Rams
There was zero chance the Rams were winning this game, against the high-scoring Saints and without quarterback Sam Bradford. But Spags designed a defensive attack that smothered Drew Brees, and he was smart enough to hand the ball to an inspired running back in Steven Jackson.
Katzowitz Wilson
Jim Schwartz Leslie Frazier, HC, Vikings
Just for the simple fact that Frazier recognized that Christian Ponder would provide a spark to his teamand replaced Donovan McNabb with Ponder as the starting quarterback. Sure, Mike Shanahan can tell you it wasn’t an unprecedented decision, but after beating the Panthers, it seemed like it came at the perfect time.
Steve Spagnuolo Steve Spagnuolo, HC, Rams
The man beat Drew Brees and one of the league's best offenses with a defense that is without its top four cornerbacks. And the Rams' offense was led not by Sam Bradford by by A.J. Feeley. In fact, we should name the award after Spagnuolo.


Posted on: August 12, 2011 10:39 pm
 

Ike Taylor breaks thumb; should be OK for opener

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

In the first series of the Steelers-Redskins preseason game Friday night, CB Ike Taylor -- who was one of the Pittsburgh’s biggest free agent (re)signings -- broke his thumb and left the game for good.

TaylorBut according to Rapid Reporter Chuck Finder, the injury isn’t a huge cause for concern. Finder writes that Taylor should be back in time for the Sept. 11 season opener vs. the Ravens.

And Finder gets a nice shot in as well. Writes Finder: “For a cover guy known for dropping balls and missing chances at INTs, it shouldn’t alter his game.”

BOOM!

In other Steelers injury news, QB Ben Roethlisberger had to ice his hand and his hip after suffering minor injuries while playing in Pittsburgh’s first offensive series. Roethlisberger also should be fine.

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Posted on: July 29, 2011 11:24 am
 

Report: Asomugha down to Jets, Cowboys

Asomugha

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

While the Texans grabbed Johnathan Joseph and the Steelers re-upped with Ike Taylor, knocking two of the three most-coveted free agent cornerbacks off the market, we’re still waiting to see where the most-expensive of them all, Nnamdi Asomugha, will sign.

The original thought(s) were the Texans, the Jets and the 49ers. Then, as Houston took on Joseph on Thursday night, it became the Jets, the 49ers (and maybe the Buccaneers, the Cowboys and the Raiders (!)). All were rumors, and supposedly, there was a chance it would be resolved late Thursday night or early Friday morning*.

*Luckily, this didn’t happen while the Eye on Football blog was catching a few hours of shut-eye.

Apparently, it’s now down to two teams. As NFL Network’s Michael Lombardi reports, Asomugha will sign either with the Jets or the Cowboys, and some believe Dallas actually is the favorite.

This will be the first big competitive test for New York coach Rex Ryan and his brother, Dallas defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, since Ryan took over the Cowboys job. It adds a little bit of intrigue to a situation that continues to be one of the most interesting storylines of the new NFL season.

Who can afford to sign and pay a guy who will probably command at least $15 million a year?

Jets CB Darrelle Revis obviously would love to have the second-best CB in the league playing opposite of him, and Jets QB Mark Sanchez has intimated that he (and maybe some of his teammates) would be willing to restructure his contract in order to land a big free agent.

The Cowboys, while way over the salary cap limit at the beginning of the season, has been dumping big-salaried players since Tuesday in an effort to sign a high-impact player.

My guess: the Jets still have the upper-hand. But with Jerry Jones always looking to get what he wants, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Asomugha end up in Dallas.

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Posted on: July 28, 2011 8:32 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2011 9:06 pm
 

Joseph, not Asomugha, to sign deal with Texans

Joseph

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Of the three major CBs that awaited free agency, only one now remains. And yes, it’s the biggest one (and the most expensive) who’s still available.

But as we wait for the decision by Nnamdi Asomugha, the Texans have taken this time to greatly improve their absolute weakest area -- the secondary.

The Houston Chronicle’s John McClain is reporting that the Texans have agreed to terms with former Bengals CB Johnathan Joseph on a a five-year, $48.75 million contract ($23.5 million guaranteed).  McClain also writes that Houston will have to renegotiate many of its players’ contracts or start waiving them in order to meet the salary cap ceiling.

All along, the talk has been that the Texans badly needed to upgrade their defensive back corps, and earlier today, we told you that they reportedly had “moved into the lead” in trying acquire free agent superstar Asomugha. But McClain writes that when Joseph was ready to sign with them, the Texans couldn’t afford to wait for Asomugha any longer.

But as we’ve been saying, a player like Joseph is probably a better value. He’s going to cost much less than Asomugha, and he’s not that far removed from the talent that Asomugha possesses. And while the former Raiders CB is 30 years old, Joseph is only 27.

Meanwhile, Ike Taylor, the only high-rated CB free agent, has re-signed with the Steelers.

Which might mean Asomugha is being nudged toward the Jets. If they can figure out a way to afford him.

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Posted on: July 27, 2011 12:05 am
 

Ike Taylor to return to Steelers

Taylor

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

For those teams looking for a CB who was a talent level below Nnamdi Asomugha but also would be much less expensive, the multiple reports that have surfaced about free agent Ike Taylor re-signing with the Steelers for a four-year deal is not welcome news.

All along, we thought a team could get much better values in CBs like Taylor and Cincinnati’s Johnathan Joseph, rather than pay $18 million a year for Asomugha (who likely will have to take less than that anyway).

Instead, Taylor is now off the board and returns to a top-notch defense that includes LB James Harrison, LB LaMarr Woodley, DE Brett Keisel, S Troy Polamalu, etc.

He’s always been a good fit for the Steelers, and it’s no surprise that he returned (even if he is, by chance, making less money than he could get on the open market).

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Posted on: July 11, 2011 6:49 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 7:52 pm
 

Report: Asomugha 'too expensive' for Lions

Posted by Will Brinson

The most prized free agent in the upcoming offseason -- as previously noted by our own Pete Prisco -- is cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha.

Many a team is expected to compete for Asomugha and, as we've previously discussed, there have been insane rumors about Nnamdi pulling in upwards of $19 million a year. One of the teams many folks expected to chase the former Raider were the Detroit Lions, an up-and-coming team in need of a cornerback.

However, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reported on Monday afternoon that Asomugha is "too expensive" for the Lions' taste and that they'll look elsewhere for secondary help.

"Elsewhere" isn't exactly bad -- Jonathan Joseph, Antonio Cromartie and Ike Taylor are all fantastic "consolation" prizes for teams that don't end up landing Asomugha.

In fact, fellow EoF blogger Ryan Wilson recently noted that Joseph might actually be the "best free-agent cornerback option," simply because his value at $X million a year might be surpass whatever Nnamdi offers at $XX, particularly at his age."
Summer of Nnamdi

Birkett notes as much, pointing out that the Lions would like to add one of those guys "if the price is right."

Of course, none of this precludes Detroit from at least chasing Asomugha, though based on this, they'll eventually pull out of the running when his price tag gets too high.

If and when they do, though, it may be an indication of how much smarter the Lions' current regime is than the last.

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Posted on: July 5, 2011 3:49 pm
Edited on: July 5, 2011 5:03 pm
 

Hot Routes 7.05.11: Somebody wants Haynesworth



Posted by Ryan Wilson
  • Michael Clayton, the Bucs first-round pick in 2004, says his football career isn't over. In the last two seasons he caught 18 passes for 249 yards. After spending the first six years of his career in Tampa Bay, Clayton played with the Giants in 2010.
  • When Plaxico Burress was released from prison last month, the Eagles were considered one of the teams most likely to sign him. Now that the new-freedom smell has worn off, it sounds as if Burress is near the bottom of Philly's offseason to-do list.
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Posted on: July 1, 2011 4:06 pm
Edited on: July 1, 2011 4:21 pm
 

Joseph might be best free-agent CB option



Posted by Ryan Wilson

When discussing soon-to-be free-agent cornerbacks, the conversation usually begins with Oakland's Nnamdi Asomugha. He's long been considered one of the best cover corners in the league, often mentioned in the same breath as Darrelle Revis, and earlier this decade, Champ Bailey and Charles Woodson. But Asomugha's not the only prized cornerback likely to hit the open market when the lockout is resolved. In fact, he may not even be the best. That honor could go to Cincinnati's Johnathan Joseph, who at 27, is also three years younger.

It's easy to forget that the Bengals actually have playmakers, what with all the off-field distractions, but Joseph, the team's first-round pick in 2006, has quietly become one of the league's best young cornerbacks.

Under the terms of the old collective bargaining agreement, Joseph would be a restricted free agent in 2011 (and in March the Bengals gave him the highest restricted tender just in case). But it now looks like he'll be free to sell his talents to the highest bidder once a new CBA is reached.

One such team could be the Seattle Seahawks. ESPN's John Clayton, appearing on the Kevin Calabro radio show earlier this week, said that Joseph could be had for $8 million a year, which will be a lot less than Asomugha will command. And it doesn't sound like Joseph has any loyalties to the Bengals.

"He would leave Cincinnati for a dollar more than the Bengals are offering," Clayton said.

Which is a familiar refrain for both players and coaches.

This also means that the other big-named free-agent cornerback, Ike Taylor, should expect something in the neighborhood of $8 million a year. He's said previously this offseason that he won't give the Steelers a hometown discount. Pittsburgh is reportedly prepared to spend -- you guessed it -- in the neighborhood of $8 million per year to keep Taylor, who is 31.

That said, if the Steelers can get comparable productivity for the same price of a player four years younger than Taylor, maybe they should pursue Joseph.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com