THE WRESTLING REPORT

Shane's perfect rise to top villain continues in WWE

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Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows www.nerdthugradio.com!

Extreme Rules actually delivered, with a great return of The Undertaker after having been an absolute embarrassment against Goldberg only a few months ago. The Roman Reigns and Undertaker tag match against Shane and Drew McIntyre actually delivered. The Kevin Owens Dolph Ziggler match was a confusing squash match with Kevin Owens stunning Dolph and just finishing the match in about six seconds which was odd since Dolph was in a crazy cage match against Kofi just last month. The New Day won the tag titles, and Ricochet lost his title to AJ Styles. Then Seth and Becky crushed Baron and Lacey but the big finish was the inevitable Brock Lesnar taking Seth's belt with the Money in the Bank contract.

Raw was pretty good but I really can't stand the Street Prophets and I think we need to dial their screen time down to zero. The ladies put on a great four way elimination match and it was awesome to see Bray Wyatt return to the ring but the 24/7 title is seriously a running gag and needs to also go away. Seth Rollins amazing run continues as he wins the 10 man battle royal and is building back up to a great Brock Lesnar rivalry, which basically legitimizes putting the belt back on Brock.

The Smackdown town hall was a great way to set up the "pro Shane" and "anti Shane" people really easily. With Liv Morgan getting destroyed by Charlotte Flair and Apollo Crews just barely getting a surprise win after a brutally one sided match against Andrade, it sets up a great "under dog" dynamic and Kevin Owens gets to run a great hero of the people feud with Shane which is finally winning me over to the idea that maybe he can be worthwhile in limited spots but still not full time. A Bayley and Ember Moon rivalry could be fun, just because it looks like they both can do some impressive stuff so this might be a fun match up for the women's title for a bit. A return of Randy Orton who then immediately wants a title shot is not a surprise but more of a disappointment and a Randy vs Kofi battle won't be fun to watch and poor Kofi will have to do all the work on this one too. It's obvious why he's holding the title as long as he is, but when are they going to give some other new guys a shot at the belt with him?

Overall the trend of better programming started this week with Shane in the role of the villain and Kevin Owens in the Steve Austin role.

Feel free to check out my brand new comic book Another Day at the Office email me for details or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help people struggling with cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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A WEEKLY REVIEW OF CRENNEL'S COACHING

Now my job: Texans feast on Lions

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Thanksgiving is full of tradition. There's the typical family gathering, large meal, and of course, football. Sometimes, new traditions are added and old ones are retired. I think the Texans did both in their impressive 41-25 win over the Lions in Detroit. Old traditions were carried on (Lions losing on Thanksgiving), some were put to rest (Texans not being able to get turnovers), and new ones were started (multiple passing touchdowns by Deshaun Watson in six straight games).

The fact that this defense got three turnovers in the game was unbelievable! They got all three in the first quarter within the span of eight plays. JJ Watt's pick-six was insane. He went for a batted ball, ended up catching it, and ran it in. They forced Jonathan Williams to fumble on the Lions' very next play from scrimmage and recovered it. On the Lions' next possession, the Texans recovered yet another fumble after the challenge was reversed. Great call by the coaching staff to challenge and win. The defense looked good. Tyrell Adams stood out because he was in on those two fumbles, made 17 total tackles with 14 of them being solo tackles. They also brought pressure that seemed to make Matthew Stafford very inaccurate and resulted in four sacks. I give defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver credit for knowing he needs to blitz to get pressure, but the run defense has to improve.

The offense kept the tempo up in this game as well. The spread and hurry-up were used to keep the Lions already staggered defense off balance. Knowing the Lions were without a couple defensive backs, I thought it would be the perfect marriage of their defense and the Texans' offense. A buddy asked before the game about the line (Texans -3.5) and the over/under (52.5). I told him bet the Texans and the over because neither team can play defense and both have good quarterbacks. Offensive coordinator Tim Kelly put together another good game plan and Watson executed it flawlessly. One route combo I saw later on in the game I particularly enjoyed. Two receivers were tight to the left side. Cooks ran a hook/curl and settled in the middle of the zone while Fuller ran a vertical route. Duke Johnson ran a swing route to that same side. It left Cooks wide open as the attention went to Johnson in the flat, Fuller deep, and the action to the other play side. Route combos are important because it gives the quarterback different reads as he goes through his progressions and lets him pick apart the defense based on what he sees. Combine that with Watson's play and the way Kelly has changed his play calling now that he's liberated from he who shall not be named, we're seeing a beautiful thing.

As good as things were, there's still room for improvement. The defense gives up way too many easy yards, both run and pass. They can't get pressure bringing only four and will often give up big plays if the blitz is picked up. Plus the run defense is still an issue as evidenced by the Lions' first possession of the second half. The Lions ran the ball 10 plays straight for a total of 58 yards on that drive. Utterly ridiculous! Watson was good (17/25 318 yards and four touchdowns), but he missed two more touchdowns with passes slightly off, and continues to hold onto the ball too long at times. The difference between these two issues I've presented here is the fact that Watson has so played well, his "issues" are minor and very correctable, while the defense is terrible and there's no easy fix in sight. But let Romeo Crennel and Anthony Weaver tell it, they're getting the most out of these guys and they're playing disciplined.

The thought that this team may actually creep into the playoff picture may take shape better after next week if they can beat the Colts. I doubt it, but it is getting interesting. Let's see what else happens around them because they need help getting there.

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