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Keeler: Brendon Lewis? Broken. Karl Dorrell’s coaching staff? Broken. Offensive line? Broken. Folsom Field? Broken. Time for CU Buffs to blow it up and start over.

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Keeler: Brendon Lewis? Broken. Karl Dorrell’s coaching staff? Broken. Offensive line? Broken. Folsom Field? Broken. Time for CU Buffs to blow it up and start over.

BOULDER — The loudest cheer from the student section came early into halftime, when a Buffs fan wearing gold-and-black overalls and not much else came charging out of the undergraduate throng and onto Folsom Field.

Skippy McOveralls ran untouched into the north end zone before security corralled him out of bounds.

It was the closest anybody wearing CU colors got to breaking the plane all stinking day.

“Offensively, we’re struggling in a number of areas,” Buffs coach Karl Dorrell said after his era hit a new nadir Saturday in a 30-0 loss to Minnesota, the program’s first shutout home loss in nearly 10 years.

“And it’s not just the quarterback. It’s protection, it’s the run game, it’s receivers, it’s backs, it’s everything. It’s one of those things right now (where) we’re going to have to wipe the slate clean and start all over and try to figure out how to do some semblance of offense and how to get some things back going.”

The defense is gassed. The passing game is painful. The Buffs’ leading rusher on Saturday was the backup quarterback, freshman Drew Carter. Nine yards. Two carries. If you want a stat to sum up the day, start there. The rest, cover your eyes.

The Buffs (1-2) play like strangers, which is what happens when your head coach doesn’t trust your offensive coordinator, your offensive coordinator doesn’t trust his quarterback, your wideouts don’t trust their quarterback, your quarterback no longer trusts his offensive line, and your linebackers can’t trust anybody. A two-score deficit feels like five right now.

“You’ve just got to look at yourself in the mirror, as a man,” junior defensive stopper Carson Wells said. “And you’ve got to physically come back (Sunday) with a better mindset and get ready to work again.”

CU’s offense? Whatever this is, it ain’t working.

Blow it up. Start over. The Gophers (2-1), buoyed by a breakfast pep talk by alum and former Broncos linebacker Karl Mecklenburg, are better than they looked at home against Miami of Ohio. Not this much better.

Ohio State shredded the Gophs for 495 yards in the Twin Cities in the opener for both programs. Miami’s RedHawks followed that up with 341 yards on Minny in Week 2, 237 through the air.

The Buffs managed 7 net yards at the break. On 25 plays. They collected 56 more yards the rest of the way.

Over its last eight quarters, against a good defense (Texas A&M) and an OK defense (Minnesota), CU has run 108 plays for 323 yards — 2.99 yards per snap — and scored seven points.

“As the head coach, I have to look at everything,” Dorrell said.

Including the mirror. It’s not just them, Coach. It’s you. It’s all of you.

Freshman Brendon Lewis might be the quarterback of the future, but the present looks unsightly. His windup is slow and deliberate, his eyes usually locked and fixed on the target. It’s a credit to the kid that he’s only been picked off once through three games, but every snap feels like a giant roll of the dice.

And we’ve heard all the arguments, why this staff is hellbent on trying to turn a running quarterback into a passer. Brenden Rice, Dimitri Stanley and Daniel Arias are allegedly too good to waste as blockers or decoys? Maybe.

The Buffs are a Lewis hamstring pull away from trotting out Carter at quarterback against Power 5 defenses? That didn’t stop the coaching staff from chucking the teen into the mix after the score was 23-0.

And that’s where you feel the vacuum of JT Shrout’s shredded knee and Sam Noyer taking the transfer portal express to Oregon State. And again, we get it: The more you use Lewis’ best weapon, his legs, the more risk you take that one or both of those legs wind up mangled.

Mind you, that’s assuming this offensive line doesn’t get him flattened first.

“That was a complete beatdown,” Dorrell said. “In every phase.”

UNC was the warm-up. Texas A&M was the reach. Only the football gods handed the Buffs a gift at Empower Field, a backup quarterback who wasn’t remotely prepared for the circumstances. The Aggies escaped anyway.

But this one, against the Gophers, was supposed to be the first fair barometer for where this roster really was. A pair of bowl-hopeful middleweights trading punches for the lunchtime crowd.

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3 keys to a Giants win over the Panthers in Week 7

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50 Colo. Time dealers, Wells are auto fame inductees

1) RUN THE BALL EFFECTIVELY

The best way to protect a bad offensive line is to run the ball well. Daniel Jones’ legs will be important to controlling this game for the Giants. So will downhill backs Devontae Booker and Eli Penny.

2) DON’T TURN IT OVER

Sam Darnold and the Panthers offense have struggled and turned the ball over without top back Christian McCaffrey. Jones can’t turn the ball over and give Darnold short fields like he did with four giveaways to the Rams.

3) STOP THE RUN

The Giants run defense is giving up 137.2 yards per game, fourth worst in the NFL. Panthers coach Matt Rhule publicly said he wants to recommit to the ground game and run it 30-35 times. The Giants view that as a direct challenge. Stopping that may decide the game.

©2021 New York Daily News. Visit nydailynews.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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Ex-Patriot Martellus Bennett rips QB Jimmy Garoppolo, credits Dolphins’ Jacoby Brissett’s toughness on podcast | Video

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Former New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett tore into 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, saying the ex-Patriots quarterback bailed out on the Pats hours before a 2016 game against the Buffalo Bills during the four-game Tom Brady suspension that began that season.

Bennett joined Miami Dolphins defensive back Jason McCourty and his twin brother, Devin, on their Double Coverage With The McCourty Twins podcast, and, during a wide-ranging stream-of-consciousness soliloquy, had an expletive-laced screed against Garoppolo, who played in New England from 2014-17. He also spoke about current Dolphins backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who also played for the Patriots then.

Said Bennett of Garoppolo and Brissett: “Bro, we lost two games [in 2016]. One of ‘em was because Jimmy Garoppolo was being a b—- and didn’t, and tried to quit, he quit for us on the last… decided not to play right before the game. So we went out there. Jacoby came out and played with a f—ed-up thumb and gave his … played his heart out. … You can’t win with a b—- for a quarterback. … He didn’t want to come out and do anything because his agent was trying to protect his body… which I can’t fault him for that, but, like you should have made that decision on Thursday, not Sunday.”

Talking to Jason McCourty, Bennett went on to savage the Dolphins for losing to the Jaguars: “Sometimes you get these losses where it’s just kind of like, ‘Damn.’ … Just like y’all losing to Jacksonville, right. Y’all lost to Jacksonville recently. Like, losing to Jacksonville has to hurt. ‘How are we the team that loses to Jacksonville? Like, everybody else, Jacksonville has lost [sic] 30 games in a row, and we will be the ones to break the 30-game losing streak?’ Like, come on, man! Nobody wants to lose to Jacksonville.”

With the conversation often referencing the Patriots, Devin McCourty, who has been with Bill Belichick for all 12 years of his NFL career, generally remained quiet as Bennett went off, allowing current Miami Dolphin and ex-Patriot Jason McCourty — who played in New England from 2018-20 — to respond and move the discussion forward.

Bennett also colorfully critiqued Jason Garrett and John Fox, his former coaches with the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears respectively. Bennett played for five teams in a 10-year NFL career from 2008-17.

©2021 South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Visit sun-sentinel.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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Virginia Beach’s Bruce Smith scared NFL quarterbacks to death. He has the tombstones to prove it.

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Bruce Smith was known for striking fear into opposing quarterbacks during his playing days in the NFL.

Now, as Halloween approaches, Smith’s neighbors can see just how many QBs he terrorized during his hall of fame career.

Inspired by a Twitter post from Cleveland Browns defensive lineman Myles Garrett, Smith’s friends — Paul Holley and Mike Hillier — got the idea to come up with a similar Halloween attraction.

Holley and Hillier arranged a slate of gravestones painted with the name and number of the NFL quarterbacks Smith sacked during his 15 seasons with the Buffalo Bills and four with Washington. Smith is the NFL’s all-time sack leader with 200, and 76 different quarterbacks — some many times — were his victims.

“We were playing golf with Bruce and we saw where someone had tweeted a picture of his graveyard with seven or eight tombstones of quarterbacks he had sacked,” Holley said, referring to Garrett. “I showed Bruce and asked him how many had he sacked. And he said, ‘76.’ So we said, ‘Let’s show him what a real graveyard looks like.’”

It only took a few minutes to convince Smith.

“Myles Garrett actually gave us the idea, and they thought it would be pretty cool for Halloween, for football fans, for kids to come by and take pictures and maybe get a football card or some candy,” said Smith, who played at Norfolk’s Booker T. Washington High and Virginia Tech and now lives in Virginia Beach. “You think of the number 200 sacks. And that’s just in the regular season. But then when you see the number of tombstones that have been amassed, and some of these guys I got to multiple times, then you kind of get a better picture and understanding of the career and of the accomplishments. And just an appreciation for the longevity that took place. “

Smith’s planted a who’s who of NFL quarterbacks, including Joe Montana, Steve Young, Warren Moon, John Elway and Troy Aikman.

But there is one legendary signal-caller who stood out to Smith.

“I don’t care too much for quarterbacks,” Smith said with a smile. “But for me, it was always Dan Marino. He was in the AFC East. He was the least sacked quarterback in that era because of his quick release. So it always gave me a great deal of satisfaction to get through some of those blockers and be able to get to him.”

Smith said his yard attraction couldn’t have been possible without the amazing work of artist Sam Clayman.

A lifelong Washington Football Team fan, Clayman was honored when Holley reached out to him about designing the styrofoam tombstones two weeks ago.

“I had other commitments and responsibilities throughout the week, so I had the weekends to do it,” he said. “I would wake up at 6:30 in the morning and work until I didn’t have any light left. Two very full weekends. But it was fun, though. And it was a challenge.”

Clayman said he’s used to doing paintings and clay sculptures, but this was a different challenge.

“But this was fun because it was something different outside of what I ordinarily do,” said Clayman, who also had help from Paul Ceballo. “It’s humbling. I’ve done a lot of work for some pretty high-profile talent from the area. It’s just icing on the cake when they happen to be a legend in their career.”

Larry Rubama, 757-446-2273, [email protected] Follow @LHRubama on Twitter.

©2021 The Virginian-Pilot. Visit pilotonline.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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