I've dove into the debate of what's better: College football or the NFL. Sometimes I take the high road and say, "why debate this?" It's football and they're great in their own regard. Some suggest that college football is nothing more than the NFL breading grounds. While I think there's truth to that, I also think that's false. Why? Because the level of enthusiasm by the players is viewed as the best part of college football. While I'm sure it's there, professional ball isn't viewed as having that attribute. But let's quickly (and I mean quickly) examine. They're completely different versions of the same sport.
For the NFL.
The level of competition is one injury away from having the worst team beat the best team. You're seeing the best talent in the world compete. There's a form of stability without having your entire team turnover every three years. Alternatively, that's a point that many college football enthusiasts love. You don't have stories of one brother murdered and the other brother setting up a fund only to have the NCAA say, NO! That's against the rules. There's a real possibility that any team can reach any extreme. The Bengals, in three years, went from the worst team over a 12 years stretch to making the playoffs. Look at the Saints and even the Chargers. On the other hand, look at the Raiders, who made the Super Bowl to suddenly become a lost franchise. Every team has the right to play for the national championship.
For College Football
Except for the bowl games, you don't have 20 minutes worth pregame "entertainment". The game is played at a quicker pace. The players are much more enthusiastic and the crowds are just as nuts. There's a lot more tradition and rivalry in college football. You don't have performance enhancing headlines. College football is a prime example of momentum allowing lesser teams beat the greater teams. The excitement level can break a hole through your home's ceiling.
Both have their points -- many of which I didn't examine. Both are great to watch. So I suppose in the long run, I again take the high road. But here's one major difference: I can watch any NFL game no matter who plays. In college football, I only watch my home teams and the highly ranked teams. And I don't suspect I'm in the minority on that.
Week in Review
The Cincinnati Bengals opened Monday Night football for the first time in franchise history beating division favorites -- the Baltimore Ravens 27-20 -- with the majority of the help coming from an unlikely unit. The Defense. I really believe there was no better script to open the season. The momentum this defense has could last several weeks while the offense gets their timing and rhythm down. Robert Geathers and Landon Johnson were nominated for AFC Defensive Player of the Week while Geathers won the GMC NFL Defensive Player of the Week.
However, some weren't 100% ready to sing the tunes of perfection. Especially on offense. Even one suggested that Carson Palmer needs to step up. While he didn't seem like the perfectionist we know, he still recorded a passer rating of over 100. Cincy Jungle reader TarZander believes it's Rudi that needs to step up (or through the hole) -- and you can't argue his points.
Antonio Chatman was cut last week because Nate Lawrie was a better fit with the week #1 game plan. After week #1, Lawrie was waived and signed to the practice squad while Chatman signed back with the team likely making his first appearance this weekend against the Browns (he's listed as probable).
Speaking of injury reports, you can see all of the reports here. Eric Ghiaciuc looks to be this weeks biggest question mark -- listed as doubtful. One player not showing up on reports is Levi Jones -- who Marvin Lewis says will "start at some point." What's up with Levi?
Against the Browns
Finally, the NFL had a great weekend proving it's getting more and more popular.