Archive for the ‘Shawntae Spencer’ Category

Sunday NFL Roundup

September 20, 2006

On Wednesday…had some problems getting to a working computer the last few days, but better late than never I guess. Without any byes, the NFL still has a full slate and lots of Panthers in action:

Houston 24
Indianapolis 43

Charles Spencer had a tough assignment in his second NFL start. Not only was he in one of the loudest buildings in all of football, he was lining up against Dwight Freeney. Things seemed to be going pretty well for Spencer though. The Texans were averaging over 4 yards per carry on the day, Freeney had only one tackle and no sacks…and then the Texans got the ball for their first drive in the 3rd quarter. Spencer went down and his return was “questionable”. Turned out he had broken his leg and was done for quite a while. I’ll have more on this in a story later this morning.

Tampa Bay 3
Atlanta 14

Torrie Cox had an up and down day for the Bucs Sunday. He ended up with four total tackles, one on special teams, and was in on a play that led to a fumble that gave Tampa the ball in good field position although he wasn’t credited with the forced fumble. After playing pretty well in pass coverage most of the day he was flagged for illegal contact that kept an Atlanta drive alive, but they ended up missing a field goal so no real harm was done.
Dave Moore did not play because of his rib injury.

Arizona 10
Seattle 21

Larry Fitzgerald had a rare game with under 100 yards receiving Sunday, finishing with only four receptions for 52 yards. Seattle’s defense did a great job of covering down the field with their zone defenses. Running back Edgerrin James was the Cards‘ leading receiver.
Gerald Hayes had a much better day, finishing with only four tackles but he also intercepted a Matt Hasselback pass when the Seahwaks were driving to score again before the half. Unfortunately Neil Rackers missed the field goal before the half that would have given Arizona more momentum going into the half.

St Louis 13
San Francisco 20

Antonio Bryant had the game winning score on a 72 yard touchdown pass that I should have video of posted soon. That capped a four catch, 131 yard day for Bryant, who had been frustrated again in the first quarter with his lack of catches. More on that later today as well.
Shawntae Spencer started in his usual spot at left corner and his hamstring seems to be completely healed. He ended with four tackles and one pass defensed.
Andy Lee‘s job as the 49er punter isn’t as busy this year as it was last year, but he still had four punts Sunday, putting two inside the 20 yard line. The other two were from inside his own 30, and went 54 and 46 yards. He also held on all San Fran field goal and extra point attempts as usual.

New England 24
New York Jets 17

Kevan Barlow did not start as we thought he might on Sunday, but he did get more than twice the carries of starter Derrick Blaylock. Barlow finished with 14 carries for 42 yards and one catch for four yards. I should have some video of Kevan up tomorrow.
Washington 10
Dallas 27

Lou Polite had a quiet day, as most days are for fullbacks in Bill Parcell’s offenses. Bledsoe threw incomplete to Polite twice, and the rest of the day was all blocking for Lou and they don’t put that in the papers.

Kansas City 6
Denver 9

Kris Wilson got in the game but had no passes thrown his way again in a defensive game.

Inactives:
Rob Pettiti was inactive for the Saints.
Nick Goings was inactive for the Panthers.
Darnell Dinkins was out with a hamstring for the Browns.

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Sunday NFL Roundup

September 11, 2006

Sorry for no posting over the weekend, but even bloggers have somewhat of a life…not much was happening until the season got into full swing yesterday anyways. Here’s a quick rundown of how former Panthers did in their games yesterday around the league, probably a more detailed follow-up on some of these later today.

Philadelphia 24
Houston 10

Charles Spencer started his first NFL regular-season game at left tackle. He did have a false start in the second quarter, but other than that no penalties. Houston only had 70 yards rushing and David Carr was sacked five times, not exactly good stats for an O-lineman to see. I’ll be looking around for some more information on how Spencer played later today.

New Orleans 19
Cleveland 14

Darnell Dinkins played special teams for Cleveland, but did not make a tackle.

Rob Petitti didn’t dress for the Saints.

Atlanta 20
Carolina 6

Nick Goings played special teams for the Panthers and recorded his only tackle covering a punt in the second quarter.

Baltimore 27
Tampa Bay 0

Torrie Cox also played on special teams for the Buccaneers. He finished with one tackle covering a punt in the first quarter. On a day Baltimore kicked off basically the entire game, Cox only had one kickoff come his way, but returned it for 26 yards. Maybe Baltimore was afraid and kicking away from Torrie.

New York Jets 23
Tennessee 16

Kevan Barlow made his Jets debut and scored on a one yard run in the second quarter. He was second on the team in carries with 11, but was only one yard behind Derrick Blaylock, who had 19 carries. Barlow ended up with 35 yards on his 11 carries for a 3.2 ypc average. Not too bad for a Jets team that didn’t seem like it could run the ball with anyone most of the day.

Cincinnati 23
Kansas City 10

Kris Wilson played sparingly for the Chiefs, and didn’t get any special teams tackles or receptions on offense. Maybe all that talk about three tight end sets in the preseason was just talk.

San Francisco 27
Arizona 34

Larry Fitzgerald is the headliner as far as Pitt alumni go in the league right now, and he didn’t disappoint on Sunday. He finished with 9 catches for 133 yards, but couldnt’ get into the end zone. Kurt Warner threw to Larry a total of 14 times and Larry dropped a few catchable balls, so he easily could have had 11 or 12 catches and gone over 200 yards if he had grabbed a few of those.
Gerald Hayes is the other starting Panther for the Cardinals, starting at middle linebacker. Hayes led the defense from the start and ended up with five tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery that he returned to the 49ers 5 yard line. Big game for Gerald’s starting debut.

For San Francisco, Shawntae Spencer was back from his injured hamstring to start at corner. He finished with 6 total tackles and a pass defensed. Can’t say it was a great day for him though as Kurt Warner pretty much threw the ball all over the field at will all day. I’m sure Shawntae’s receiver, whether it was Boldin or Fitzgerald, got their share of catches.
Antonio Bryant almost matchd Larry’s yardage total, with 4 catches for 114 yards including a 46 yarder. He also couldn’t get in the end zone though. He was thrown to five other times for incompletions, picked up a holding call on a running play, and was slapped with a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for taunting.
The final Panther in the game was punter Andy Lee. Usually punting for San Francisco is a pretty busy job, and Andy made the most of his opportunities on Saturday. He put three of his four punts inside the 20, including one downed at the 5 in teh second half. Andy also holds on all field goals and extra points for the 49ers.

Fitzgerald and Boldin Make Cardinals Fly

September 8, 2006

fitz Larry was part of a feature in yesterday’s San Francisco Chronicle on the Cardinals offense. San Francisco is playing at Arizona on Sunday. The article starts off in a kind of surprising way, detailing how Anquan Boldin had to basically whip Fitz into shape after he was drafted. If I remember correctly Fitz left school in January to train for the draft…I have always thought he was sort of a workout/training fiend…I guess I was wrong:

A few 49ers defenders labeled Boldin the best receiver in the game in an anonymous poll taken this week. He also is credited with refining the sometimes questionable practice habits of the stunningly talented Larry Fitzgerald, even if Fitzgerald is loath to admit it.

Asked if Fitzgerald learned anything from Boldin, the third-year receiver said, “I don’t really know. Not anything I can really speak on.”

But those close to the organization say that Fitzgerald’s practice habits were wanting when he was picked with the third overall selection in the 2004 draft, and that Boldin, either through example or confrontation, showed the youngster how to work.

That was pretty interesting, especially the way that Fitz doesn’t seem to want to give any credit to Anquan after the fact for making him a better player. I almost want to say that must have been taken out of context, but I guess it is what it is. The Chronicle does say Fitz should somehow be even better this year than he was last year:

And the game-breaking Fitzgerald could be even better this season. “He has just scratched the surface,” said Cardinals receivers coach Mike Wilson, who won four Super Bowls with the 49ers as a San Francisco receiver from 1981 through 1990. “He’s leaner and stronger.”

You really have to feel for anyone who has to prepare to stop Boldin and Fitz…especially when you’re preparing the horrible 49ers to do it:

When asked what the 49ers will do to counter the pair Sunday in Arizona, Nolan wouldn’t answer because he didn’t want to expose strategy.

“I will say this, it isn’t easy,” Nolan said.

The 49ers had no answer last year.

Against the 49ers injured and talent-starved secondary in two games, Boldin and Fitzgerald caught a staggering 34 passes for 503 yards and three scores.

The writer seems to contradict his earlier dig at Fitzgerald, who he said didn’t practice enough, when he says late in the article that Fitzgerald refused to leave the practice facility in his rookie season:

Boldin contrasts dramatically with the quieter, more worldly Fitzgerald.

The dread-locked son of a Minnesota sports writer admits he’s a loner. Fitzgerald moved to Arizona at the fragile age of 20, after starring at the University of Pittsburgh for two seasons. He took on the handle “Late-night Larry” for his reluctance to leave the Cardinals’ facility and return to an empty house. He even took to folding towels and jerseys with the equipment staff.

“He might have been the youngest starter in the league his rookie year,” Wilson said.

That sounds more like the Larry we were used to at Pitt. Not sure which end of this story to believe, but either way Fitzgerald is becoming noticed even tough he plays out in the desert and is never on TV. Most of the preseason write ups I’ve seen have him leading the league in catches this season, pushing 110 catches. Let’s hope he starts off fast Sunday against the 49ers.

49ers corner and former Panther Shawntae Spencer will be back and starting for San Fran in this one, but will most likely be covering Boldin for the majority of the game.

Injury Update – Dinkins, Spencer, Moore

September 7, 2006

Looks like only three Panther alumni are going into the first week banged up. I’ll be watching for any updates on these injuries:

Cleveland Brown Darnell Dinkins is questionable with a knee injury of some sort. According to this article though it seems like he will play, since he hasn’t been limited in practice:

Guard Joe Andruzzi (ankle), cornerback Antonio Perkins (groin), tight end Darnell Dinkins (knee), tackle Nat Dorsey (ankle), guard Isaac Sowells (ankle) and linebacker Mason Unck (knee) are questionable.

Unck was the only one among the questionable players limited in practice.

Dave Moore is also questionable with a knee injury for Tampa Bay. Dave is primarily used as Tampa Bay’s long snapper. I have never personally long-snapped, but I can’t imagine having one week knee would be that comfortable when you are bent over with your head between your knees and a very large man about to hit you on top of the head.

Shawntae Spencer is listed as questionable for the 49ers with the hamstring he hurt in training camp, but he has been practicing and will play. This sounds similar to what Hines Ward’s situation is like…they haven’t upgraded his status but it seems his actual health and ability to start and play a lot has obviously improved quite a bit if he is practicing everyday:

The only other name on the injured list is cornerback Shawntae Spencer, who’s questionable with a hamstring pull. However Spencer has participated in the last three practices without incident.

News Roundup…Poteat, Lee, Spencer

September 4, 2006

Some quick hits from around the web this holiday morning:

Hank Poteat became a Jet and then was released before he ever even practiced with the team:

Cornerback Hank Poteat was also cut, without having practiced with the team. He joined the Jets on Thursday, two days after being waived by New England, and played against the Eagles.

“Hank’s a guy I’ve known for a long time,” said Mangini, who coached Poteat in New England. “I wanted to give Hank an opportunity to come here and show the coaching staff the things he can do.”

So basically Mangini was saying this was a pitty-pick-up and he had basically no shot at actually making the Jets. Was a good opportunity for Hank though, hopefully he showed someone in the league something with his one game for the Jets. He finished with three solo tackles and an assist in that game.

One story probably not mentioned in most “who was cut” articles, including ours, was that Andy Lee did finally beat out veteran Tom Rouen for the punting duties in San Francisco:

Andy Lee beat out 14-year veteran Tom Rouen to be the San Francisco 49ers’ punter

Rouen, who punted for Seattle in the Super Bowl last season, lost the competition with Lee, in his third season with San Francisco.

Lee, who makes about $250,000 less than Rouen would have made, impressed Nolan in the Niners’ exhibition victory over San Diego on Friday night.

“That was an important one for us,” Nolan said. “(Rouen) certainly didn’t come here with the intention to make Andy Lee a better punter, but I think to some extent he did.”

We covered this battle pretty extensively here, and said all along we though Andy would be the punter if not because of his performance this preseason but because of his long-term benefit to the 49ers. He should be their punter for a long time.

Shawntae Spencer says that he will be back for the 49ers home opener:

Shawntae Spencer practiced Sunday for the first time since suffering a pulled left hamstring nearly three weeks ago, and the 49ers cornerback vowed he will play in Sunday’s opener at Arizona.

“Whether I feel good, whether I feel bad, I’m going to play to the best of my ability,” said Spencer, who missed the final three exhibitions after suffering the injury during a training-camp workout. “That’s what I do. That’s why I’m here. It’s the season now.”

Spencer began running last week and took part in individual and team drills with no problems reported.

Spencer is officially listed as questionable for the opener, but it sounds like his hamstring is healing better than others around the league and he should be ready. Shawntae is San Francisco’s #1 corner and is a big part of their defense.

Bryant named camp MVP by Scout.com

August 24, 2006

Antonio Bryant made the San Francisco scout.com site’s training camp wrap as the camp MVP and the best addition to the team through training camp:

Camp MVP: Antonio Bryant dominated on a daily basis, in the morning and in the afternoon, a man on a mission who never let up from the start of camp to the end of it, snagging passes of all varieties and competing regularly quite like no one else on the team.
Best new addition:
There are upgrades most everywhere you look on the roster, but no newcomer has brought more to one position than Bryant has at wide receiver, where he takes the place of Brandon Lloyd as the team’s No. 1 wideout and adds a lot more talent, drive and production to that space.

Also mentioned as best ballhawk was pre-hamstring injury Shawntae Spencer:

Worst injury: 1. Andre Torrey’s torn knee ligaments, which put him on injured reserve. 2. Parys Haralson’s foot injury, which will keep him out into the regular season. 3. Shawntae Spencer’s hamstring, which will keep him out the rest of the preseason.
Best ballhawk: Before he was injured last week, Spencer was establishing himself as perhaps San Francisco’s best defensive back, and he was consistently putting himself in position to make a lot of plays on the football.

Sunday NFL Roundup

August 21, 2006

Antonio Bryant 46 yard reception

Not actually a “roundup”, more like “one game”…but it was at least featuring the Pitt West Campus San Francisco 49ers. The Niners are trying to lose that nickname though, as before the game they traded away Kevan Barlow to the Jets for a draft pick that is yet to be named.

Antonio Bryant started at wide receiver as usual and finished with one catch for 46 yards on a drive that ended in a missed field goal. Bryant played the entire first half with the starters on offense. Alex Smith threw to Bryant two other times in the first half but both were incomplete.

The 49ers’ Scout.com site commented on Bryant’s performance:

Rarely, if ever, have we seen Antonio Bryant drop a pass in his hands on the run this summer like he did the first time the football came his way Sunday. And that was one of the knocks on Bryant before he came to San Francisco.

But, as Bryant also has shown us often this summer, he’ll make up for it with a big play the next time he gets a chance to do so. Like a 46-yard reception big play.

Andy Lee had 4 punts, all right around 50 yards, finishing with a 51.3 yard avg. Andy couldn’t get a punt inside the 20 though and had one touchback.

Shawntae Spencer was out and will be for the rest of the preseason with his pulled hamstring.

Spencer pulls hamstring, out for preseason

August 18, 2006

Shawntae SpencerMore news out of the University of Pittsburgh West Coast Campus known as the San Francisco 49ers…Shawntae Spencer pulled up lame with a hamstring injury in practice Wednesday morning. Ironically he was covering former Panther Antonio Bryant who made a fingertip grab on the play after Spencer fell due to pulling his hammy.

From InsideBayArea:

Niners coach Mike Nolan said Thursday that starting left cornerback Shawntae Spencer will miss the rest of the preseason because of a strained hamstring he suffered during practice Wednesday.

“It’ll be a few weeks,” said Nolan, adding he expects Spencer to be ready for the regular-season opener on Sept. 10 at Arizona.

Spencer’s injury is increasing the opportunity for other cornerbacks. Sammy Davis, has moved up to the first team at left cornerback, and Derrick Johnson and rookie Marcus Hudson are seeing time on the “dime” unit that enters the game on passing downs.

Spencer has started 26 games in the last two seasons for the niners and was seemingly making strides to become even better in his third season. He has recently been featured on the 49ers website with his own journal and is pictured on the cover of their GameDay program. Hopefully a he is ready for the season opener.

This should only increase the rumors and possibly talks between the 49ers and Jets about trading Kevan Barlow for some cornerback help.

Shawntae Spencer Camp Diary

August 15, 2006

Shawntae thinking about his next trip to the 'burghThe 49ers website is featuring a training camp diary written by Pitt alumnist Shawntae Spencer. It’s a pretty good read, Spencer talks about being featured on the cover of the 49ers program “GameDay” for their first preseason game against the Bears.

“I was so excited to see GameDay on Friday night. I had done the photo shoot and knew it was coming but when I saw it I was like, ‘wow, I’m on the cover of the Game Day program.’ I took as many as I could, all the ones left in the locker room. Mike Adams and I were running around scooping them up. They may not believe me when I go back to Pittsburgh so now I have a lot of them for proof.”

Nice to know Spencer can’t wait to get back to the ‘burgh. He also talks about his switch from right to left corner.

“I knew they were going to throw the ball at me a lot being that I switched from right to left cornerback. I expected to get a lot of action and I was right and so I just tried to make some plays. Making plays is the only way you can stay on the field.”

I’m still looking for a picture of the cover of GameDay, so if anyone has one feel free to send it to me.

Friday NFL Roundup

August 12, 2006

In the Broncos – Lions game Brandon Miree, trying to make Denver’s active roster, got in the game but did not have a rushing attempt.

Torrie Cox had four tackles in Tampa Bay’s 16-3 win over the Jets. Dave Moore did get in the game for the Bucs, but had no receptions. Curtis Martin sat out the game as he is still rehabbing his knee following surgery.

The University of Pittsburgh San Francisco Campus (the 49ers have 4 Pitt starters currently) game against the Chicago Bears wraps up the Friday slate of NFL games involving former Panthers. For the 49ers: Kevan Barlow had only one carry for 2 yards and left the game with a bruised thigh, Antonio Bryant made his San Fran debut with 5 catches for 54 yards, Andy Lee had 2 punts including one pinned inside the 20 and Shawntae Spencer had 2 tackles and 2 passes defensed. Rueben Brown started as expected for the Bears at his normal LG spot.

Antonio Bryant after one of his 5 catches