Bears vs Seahawks: What to look for

Friday night is game 3 in the NFL preseason. If you follow football closely, you know this is the “dress rehearsal” for the regular season. Starters typically play the first half and start the 3rd quarter. It will vary how much they play after that. There have been a few roster moves since last week’s game. Let’s take a look at what has been going on.

The biggest news out of week 2 is that KR/PR Eric Weems has been cut and backup TE Zach Miller has been put on IR with a Lisfranc injury. Weems had the early lead in the Kick/Punt returning duties and literally fumbled it away. He seemed to have lost a step over what he had last season. Miller was showing flashes of what he could be as a pass catching Tight End in the Bears system. He probably would have got a lot of looks in a 2 TE sets and could have picked up some of the slack for injured WR Marquees Wilson. The Bears also picked up veteran WR Santana Holmes, who I think has a real interesting opportunity here in Chicago.

Jordan Palmer vs Jimmy Clausen: The backup QB battle has been one of the toughest competitions to gauge. Both QBs have looked good at times. I personally thought Palmer looked better when he went up vs 2nd string competition. Clausen probably has the better arm and is a little more mobile than Palmer. The key here is who will come out after Cutler is done on Friday. Whoever it is, will likely be the backup to start the season*. The other QB unfortunately, is likely to be cut.

Backup RB: Veteran RB Shaun Draughn is still firmly entrenched as the #2 RB behind Matt Forte. While Ka’Deem Carey has had a nice camp, he really hasn’t shown enough to take over the position. Michael Ford was on the team last season as the 3rd RB behind Michael Bush, but may be in danger of loosing his roster spot. Free Agent RB Senorise Perry has shown the ability to make some plays and looks like a decent receiver out of the backfield. Ford could have an opportunity to return kicks.

WR3: The battle for this spot has gotten more interesting with the above mentioned singing of Santana Holmes. Speedy Canadian football star, Chris Williams should be back to action and will be Holmes’ strongest competition. Holmes and Williams may also be competing for Punt Returner. Veteran WR Josh Morgan has had a good camp and been solid catching the ball in the first two games. At this point, he is a lock to make the team and will also get some looks at the 3rd WR spot.

The Offensive line: While they have been stellar in pass protection so far, giving up only 2 sacks in 77 pass attempts, the run game has looked bad at times. They will have a huge test going up vs one of the stingiest defenses in the league–especially in the Emerald City. The Bears will be game-planning a little for Seattle, so it will be neat to see what they do against one of the best defenses in the league.

The Defensive line: They have been the most consistent unit on this side of the ball. Looking, really good in week 1 and a little less stout in week 2. They will be tested early and often against the Seahawks power run game and mobile QB Russell Wilson. In addition to their starting rotation, it will be interesting to see what camp standout, DE Trevor Scott can do. He has gotten some nice pressure on opposing QBs so far.

Linebacker: 2nd year LBs Jon Bostic and Khaseem Green looked a little better in game two but need to show more consistency as does converted DE Shea McClellin. McClellin has made a little progress over game 1 and seems to be getting closer to becoming an NFL starter at Strongside LB.

Safety: Progress has been pretty steady in the battle for starting Safeties. It could get a little cloudier depending on if veteran Safety Chris Conte comes back and gets into form. Adrian Wilson has made a couple nice hits, but seems like a liability in pass coverage. Ryan Mundy and Danny McCray have probably been the two most reliable DBs in this unit so far.

Special Teams: They really need a good 4 quarter showing here on all phases. Kick coverage has been the strongest unit so far, really only having one blemish on it so far. WR Michael Spurlock will get a chance to return punts and possibly kicks, but he has been unreliable so far, fumbling and causing another turnover in his limited action. A healthy Chris Williams or newly signed Santana Holmes may be better options, but with the WR depth, might not be worth risking.

*Jordan Palmer has been named as Cutler’s first replacement

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Mixed signals

Mixed signals

8-20-14

I’ve been here before

I know something, keep listening

I’ve done this already

My knowledge is deep, infinite

I just get confused

They keep sending me mixed signals

I need to move on

This world drags me down, sometimes

We’ve gotta dance, we have our music

This song is divine, subliminal

We’ve got control, we have the speed

Full throttle let’s be the technology

We’ve been here before

You know it’s true, you feel it inside

We’ve done this before

At least two or three times now

Why must we always repeat?

We don’t learn from the past, we die young

Why can’t we choose?

They hit the button

It spins us around and round

We’ve gotta dance, we have our music

This song is divine, subliminal

We’ve got control, we have the speed

Full throttle let’s be the technology

 

 

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What area haven’t you quested in?

Whether you refuse to or simply move off to another zone before you complete it, I’m sure there are many places you haven’t seen in a while. I know there are for me. I just finished Andorhal and most of Western Plaguelands for the first time in a while. If you haven’t, you should give that a go sometime. Great story, especially if you like Deathknights or Sylvanas. I won’t reveal any more than that ;)

WoWScrnShot_082014_155422

Menethil Keep, Wetlands.

I am kind of stuck in my ways when I level. I do my starter zone and then go to Elwynn and do a few quests there. Then I usually go to Kharanos and do a few there before returning to Elwynn to say hi to Hogger and move off to Westfall. I usually do that completely and then move on to Redridge. Depending on how fast I want to level, I may scoot off to Duskwood at 19/20, which is kind of silly. Especially with heirlooms.

This brings a problem though, not necessarily a bad one. The result is me being in my mid 30s when I am done with Duskwood. By that time, I am ready for a few quests in Arathi and moving on to the Hinterlands. Totally skipping out on Wetlands. I used to like Wetlands a lot more pre-Cataclysm. I have done it maybe once since then. It’s something I want to do (not bad enough if I haven’t done it yet!). I’m one of those people that usually goes for the higher XP when I level.

I would love it if you could visit an NPC and “boost” the mobs and XP to your level. This would be kind of good and bad. Good because then you could truly level anywhere at any time. Bad if it can only be done by phasing. Not sure how else they really could do it. Probably better left for another write up.

Loch Modan is skipped over too, but I don’t mind so much, considering what they did to the place. Just a shell of what it used to be.

After that, I tend to skip around a lot. I am notorious for doing the first dozen or so quests in a zone and whipping off to another. Which kind of sucks for two reasons. 1, I don’t get to see major parts of the story in that zone and 2, I miss out on those rare quality quest rewards. I am my own worst enemy at times. Although, with 5-6 heirlooms, I must admit, it’s not that big of a deal (until I enter a BG :p).

So how about you? Are there zones you skip out on purpose of just outlevel? Feel free to let me know in the comments down under!

 

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Curse of Naxxramas: Military Quarter

This week we review the Military Quarter of the Hearthstone expansion: Curse of Naxxramas. 3 more bosses and 6 more wonderful cards!

Razuvious and 2 minions

Instructor Razuvious.

Instructor Razuvious is a prickly little pickle. He starts out with 40 health and 2 0/7 taunts, which you can claim as yours, if you are so inclined to do so. I will let you figure out the rest on your own.

razuvious defeated

Defeating Razuvious rewards you with the Dancing Swords card. A 4/4 minion that grants your opponent a card upon it’s demise. For 3 mana, that’s not bad.

Gothik the Harvester

Next up is Gothik the Harvester. Gothik has a hero power that adds a card for 2 mana. In addition to that, many of his minions come back to haunt you.

Gothik defeated

Defeating Gothik the Harvester rewards you with access to the Spectral Knight cards. A 4/6 minion which cannot be targeted by hero powers or spells. A beefier version of the Faerie Dragon, which is referenced in it’s flavor text! Not bad for 5 mana!

The four horseman

The Four Horsemen!

The Four Horsemen is quite interesting. Starts out with 3 of the horsemen on the board, who are 1/7 minions. The catch? The 4th horseman is in a protective shield. The only way to get it down is to, well, I am not going to ruin the fun for you!

The four horseman defeated

Defeating the 4 Horsemen unlocks the Deathlord card, a 2/8 minion with Taunt and a Deathrattle that puts a card from your opponents deck onto their board. All for 3 mana! Kind of makes you want to silence him doesn’t it?

Baron Rivendare unlocked

Completing the Military Quarter rewards you with Baron Rivendare (the 4th Horseman!), a 1/7 Legendary card that allows your cards with Deathrattle to be triggered twice! Tricky.

Shaman and Warlock challenges unlocked

It also opens up the Shaman and Warlock class challenges.

Reincarnate unlocked

Completing the Shaman class challenge rewards you with the Reincarnate card, a 2 mana spell that destroys a minion and brings it back to life with full health. Very interesting, especially if it has a Deathrattle.

Voidcaller unlocked

Completing the Warlock class challenge unlocks the Voidcaller card. A 3/4 minion that costs 4 mana to play and has a Deathrattle which places a random demon from your hand into the battlefield.

This ends this week’s Curse of Naxxramas review. If you have missed the previous two, you can check them out here:  Arachnid Quarter, Plague Quarter. Stay tuned for the Construct Quarter!

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Santonio Holmes could “clean up” as 3rd WR with Bears

Enter the silent assassin. He thrives in the shadows. Patient. Poised. Waiting for his opportunity to strike. He knows his opponent. He finds the holes, the weakness in the enemy’s armor. He strikes. With Santonio Holmes, it won’t be one cut. This will be a slow death by 1000 cuts.

Santonio Holmes comes to Chicago by way of New York. He carries a lot of baggage with him. Baggage mostly placed on him by ex-teammates and outsiders. It might not be fair but it is what it is. He’s a smart guy. He knows the score. He can either be the silent assassin, poised and patient. Or he can be cut and try to catch on with another team or try his and at broadcasting. The choice is his. I’m betting he will take the former. The opportunity is too good.

The odds will be in his favor. What Phil Emery, Marc Trestman and Jay Cutler have built in just over a year is pretty impressive. The offensive line could be one of the top 5 in the NFL. The Bears boast 3 targets 6’3″ or higher and a dual-threat back in Matt Fote who is 6’2″. What does this mean? The third WR will at worst, be going up against a team’s 3rd best Cornerback and probably often, a Safety, a 4th string CB or be running totally open. You can see the upside. He might only have a handful of games to make his mark. 2nd year WR Marquess Wilson will be back at some point and Rookie speedster Chris Williams could steal some targets away.

It will be likely Holmes will be playing for next year. His contract with the Bears is probably the veteran minimum for 2014. If he can show he has anything left, come in be a good teammate and be productive, he could be looking at another year in Chicago or a couple years somewhere else. He’s going to have to hit the ground running, literally and figuratively. His big day is this Friday up in Seattle. A team who boasts a lot of depth in the secondary and has some of the biggest DBs in the league.

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Imagine: Disposable mounts

Welcome back to Imagine! This week, we are going to take a look at the “disposable mount”. They kind of already have it with the Warforged Nightmare mount and mount hitch. Wouldn’t it be cool to lay one of this things down for low levels to ride? I mean sometimes you just get tired of running around. Especially when you have to go from one end of the zone to another, then back.

It would also be neat if you could give people rides on your multi-player mount without having to invite them to a party. I guess that is a little nit-picky, but still. Many times when I am Pet Battling in the low level zones, I buff players and heal them if need be or help them with a mob. I even have a holiday based on “being nice” or “sharing“. I like to give back and “pay forward” the generosity that I experience from time to time.

So what do you think? Would disposable mounts and being able to give someone a ride–not in party work for you? Feel free to let me know in the comments below!

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Nowhere fast

Nowhere fast

8-5-14

I’m not your doctor

I’m just your friend

Someone concerned with

Your well being

I’m not your lover

I’m not your dad

I’m here to cheer you

When you feel bad

Your bills are up and

Your chips are down

You’re getting nowhere

You got there fast

You’re more lost than

You are found

Find your ‘somewhere’

And make it last

 

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