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NFL 2017-2018 Season Discussion

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Nick Foles is the new QB Eagles! Loved his performance last night. 

 

(I know, I know, Wentz will be back at the helm next year)

 

Congrats to Philly fans, and thanks to both teams for a highly entertaining super bowl. I was pulling for the 'gles, of course, but more than anything I wanted to see an exciting SB game. This was one for the ages.

 

Last 3 Pats SBs have pitted Brady vs NFC birds ... 2018 Brady vs Cardinals in the SB ... ?!

Edited by Green Majik

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8.) Screw Belichick.  Yeah, I said it.  I want a detailed explanation as to why Malcolm Butler did not play last night.  It better have been something inexcusable like physical assaulting someone - and if so, I will eat my words.  But if it's something petty and Bill's ego potentially cost the Pats a Super Bowl, F him.  Interesting that Brandon Browner tweeted about it and it was liked by Donta Hightower and a few other Patriots.  Give me a Brady led team over a Belichick coached team any day of the year.  I've said this for years with 90% certainty... now it's a lock.

 

I won't go so far as to say "Screw Belichick," but I agree with the overall sentiment. Let's be clear here, though, if there was no good reason to bench Butler, and considering he played 97% of snaps during the regular season, then the Hoodie royally f*cked up. Did he not think that benching a starting lineup member would cause a distraction to the rest of the defense/team? I am so curious as to why Butler was benched. He's had the flu in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, so maybe he wasn't practicing hard? Maybe Belichick threw Eric Rowe in there because Rowe will most likely be playing in Butler's starting role next year once he leaves New England in FA? I don't know, but I think no matter what, sitting him the whole game was a mistake. And the absolute only way it wasn't going to be perceived as a mistake is if the Patriots won, and Eric Rowe played a standout game.

Edited by Yak

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4 minutes ago, Yak said:

 

I won't go so far as to say "Screw Belichick," but I agree with the overall sentiment. Let's be clear here, though, if there was no good reason to bench Butler, and considering he played 97% of snaps during the regular season, then the Hoodie royally f*cked up. Did he not think that benching a starting lineup member would cause a distraction to the rest of the defense/team? I am so curious as to why Butler was benched. He's had the flu in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, so maybe he wasn't practicing hard? Maybe Belichick threw Eric Rowe in there because Rowe will most likely be playing in Butler's starting role next year once he leaves New England in FA? I don't know, but I think no matter what, sitting him the whole game was a mistake. And the absolute only way it wasn't going to be perceived of as a mistake is if the Patriots won, and Eric Rowe played a standout game.

 

Yeah, I'm probably jumping the gun and making conclusions without hearing all the facts.  There was a hint of humor to my post, but reading it over I can tell it didn't come across that way. Maybe there was a justified reason for benching him.  But I feel that the fans are owed an explanation - especially when the loss can be pinned 100% on the defense.  Right now all we know is that, per Belichick, "he did what was best for the team and it worked best with their gameplan", which is complete bullsh*t.  Nobody is buying that.  It's simply not true.  Would the Pats have won if Butler played?  That's a woulda, coulda, shoulda argument and I hate those, but I have a feeling they would have been a bit better off.

 

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Amazing game, it will go down in the books for memorable moments. 

 

Congrats to the Eagles and their fans. It's fun to watch a team finally get over the hump and achieve their first SB win ever. 

 

Very happy for Nick Foles after all the things he's went through over the years. He went from almost retiring after his time with Jeff Fisher's Rams, alllll the way to becoming SB MVP. What a journey. 

 

Credit to Brady last night even though the Pats lost. He played out of his mind and racked up the 500 yards passing, breaking his own SB record and also breaking Bernie Kosar's old record of most yards in a post season game. Now you all know how I feel and other Saints fans when we watch Brees put up crazy numbers and we still lose games cause the defense plays so terribly. This reminded me a lot of several Saints losses between 2012 to 2016 (hell, even this past year in the playoffs, the defense completely shits the bed after Brees has a crazy comeback). It's going to be a sad day when Brady retires, I understand the feeling of love for your QB who puts the team on his back and goes out in a blaze of glory. 

 

 

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16 hours ago, Bodom said:

 

 

5) What in the absolute f*ck was Cooks doing on that play?  He was running around like an overly excited puppy and got walloped.  Solid, clean hit.  Not to mention the play where he tried to hurdle the defender, but just ended up tea-bagging him and falling short of the 1st down.  Great player, but I think the moment seemed a bit too big for him. 

 

I watched Cooks for all of his time in New Orleans, and this stuff right here didn't surprise me at all. This is pretty much the reason the Saints traded him...

 

He has no field awareness as a receiver whatsoever. That was clearly seen in the end around run play. He had the speed to get around the guy, and he stupidly just runs right to him and tries to jump over him. He had the same problems with end around run plays here in Payton's scheme. Funny speaking of this, Ted Ginn Jr filled that role much better this past year despite expectations being low, and Michael Thomas totally was outplaying Cooks in all of 2016, which led to him being traded. The Saints gave so many roles to Cooks when he was here, sorta like they used to do with Marques Colston, but he never lived up to the hype. 

 

The hit where he got injured, he had trouble with similar stuff during his time with the Saints and it goes back to his lack of awareness on the field. Cooks was awful in coverage with us. He's good for a home run TD when he gets ahead of defensive backs, but in good coverage, he always struggled and could be shut down. The Panthers used to completely lock him up with Luke Kuechley and then putting Josh Norman on him. The Falcons were also pretty good at shutting him down when he was with us. 

 

Wish him the best in New England if he stays and I hope he has a speedy recovery. 

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, _DEBERG said:

 

I watched Cooks for all of his time in New Orleans, and this stuff right here didn't surprise me at all. This is pretty much the reason the Saints traded him...

 

He has no field awareness as a receiver whatsoever. That was clearly seen in the end around run play. He had the speed to get around the guy, and he stupidly just runs right to him and tries to jump over him. He had the same problems with end around run plays here in Payton's scheme. Funny speaking of this, Ted Ginn Jr filled that role much better this past year despite expectations being low, and Michael Thomas totally was outplaying Cooks in all of 2016, which led to him being traded. The Saints gave so many roles to Cooks when he was here, sorta like they used to do with Marques Colston, but he never lived up to the hype. 

 

The hit where he got injured, he had trouble with similar stuff during his time with the Saints and it goes back to his lack of awareness on the field. Cooks was awful in coverage with us. He's good for a home run TD when he gets ahead of defensive backs, but in good coverage, he always struggled and could be shut down. The Panthers used to completely lock him up with Luke Kuechley and then putting Josh Norman on him. The Falcons were also pretty good at shutting him down when he was with us. 

 

Wish him the best in New England if he stays and I hope he has a speedy recovery. 

 

 

 

 

All of this is solid.

 

My only devil's advocate position is that the kid is 24 years-old. He's got a lot to learn, as physically talented as he is. He's also cut from the same uber competitive cloth as the best who play the game. First dude at practice, last dude gone kind of kid. I really like Cooks, and I hope the Patriots find a way to keep him around. 

 

That being said, again, your analysis is right on. I'm hoping getting his clock rung while he was running around in a circle like he was trying to avoid Tecmo Super Bowl diving tackles is enough to make him reconsider a few elements in how he plays the game. ;)

Edited by Yak

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On Monday, February 05, 2018 at 12:04 PM, Green Majik said:

Nick Foles is the new QB Eagles! Loved his performance last night.

 

(I know, I know, Wentz will be back at the helm next year)

 

Congrats to Philly fans, and thanks to both teams for a highly entertaining super bowl. I was pulling for the 'gles, of course, but more than anything I wanted to see an exciting SB game. This was one for the ages.

 

Last 3 Pats SBs have pitted Brady vs NFC birds ... 2018 Brady vs Cardinals in the SB ... ?!

I was thinking the same thing actually before the game. I thought Phi may not do it so then up next comes the Cards like the next year and Pats do a possible sweep of the 4 however Phi ruined that.

Edited by BigCat71
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Disappointed in MN fans. So much for those Uber and Airbnb ideas. All along I thought the ultimate revenge would be to show up for the game and root for the Pats. Well that didn't happen because we know who actually scalped and did stubhub, etc.

 

So first their team lost in the title game then allowed the fans of who they lost to to have their hometown stadium for the Big One (nice to get some money but look who has the power now). As if it weren't bad enough after all these years. Talk about being cursed.

 

Additional thoughts:

Before the season began I thought it'd be a Pack win over the Pats in the SB bc (1) being nearby so homefield advantage and (2) acquired Martellus who could give the Pack knowledge about the Pats. Didn't quite turn out exactly that way but the Pats did indeed lose and it was to a team, with not 1 but 2 ex-Pats, that generated great energy at home and were able to carry it with them to other places however foreign.

 

I'm gonna go on a limb and predict next year's to be between LAC (yes) and SEA who the media foolishly wants to write off because of their playing style even though it's what makes them stand out.

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12 hours ago, Yak said:

 

All of this is solid.

 

My only devil's advocate position is that the kid is 24 years-old. He's got a lot to learn, as physically talented as he is. He's also cut from the same uber competitive cloth as the best who play the game. First dude at practice, last dude gone kind of kid. I really like Cooks, and I hope the Patriots find a way to keep him around. 

 

That being said, again, your analysis is right on. I'm hoping getting his clock rung while he was running around in a circle like he was trying to avoid Tecmo Super Bowl diving tackles is enough to make him reconsider a few elements in how he plays the game. ;)

 

Thank you, I am hoping Cooks improves over time. We loved him here in New Orleans, and many fans were upset over the trade initially. He has amazing speed, but it just never worked out here. The Saints basically tried to make him as their new Marques Colston by assigning him multiple roles on the offense, and must have thought he would be a jack of all trades player (Payton tried desperately to use him on special teams in 2014 and 2015). I think in 2016 Sean Payton must have realized that Michael Thomas was his best bet for a #1 receiver since Thomas was amazing down field in coverage, and he improved a great deal this past year. This past year, Ted Ginn Jr pretty much was used as Cooks replacement with end around run plays and the slot position. (I'm hoping Ginn returns cause he seems to have finally found a good home with a team that utilizes his skill set. He gave us many exciting plays this year). 

 

The slot is where I always felt Cooks thrived the best. He had his finest moments with the Saints as a slot receiver. Some of those long TD passes he had from Brees came from the slot with him outrunning DB's down the field. In some ways, he kinda reminded me a bit of Devery Hendersen and the few times the Saints would use him in the slot. 

 

Using Ginn as a comparison, for years people bashed him for dropped passes and never playing up to his expectations but he shined last year, so I think the same can happen for Cooks eventually. I hated to see him get injured in the SB (and the hit going to another former Saint - Malcolm Jenkins, ironic as hell).

 

Wishing him the best and I think eventually he can learn his ways in New England. The pure talent is there, if he can improve in time, he could become a dangerous wide receiver. I say the trade worked out for both teams. Pats got Cooks who had his best career year this past season, and in New Orleans we got an O-lineman out of that pick and later took Kamara whom quickly became the first Saint in years to make me want to run out and purchase a jersey. 

Edited by _DEBERG

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21 hours ago, _DEBERG said:

 

Thank you, I am hoping Cooks improves over time. We loved him here in New Orleans, and many fans were upset over the trade initially. He has amazing speed, but it just never worked out here. The Saints basically tried to make him as their new Marques Colston by assigning him multiple roles on the offense, and must have thought he would be a jack of all trades player (Payton tried desperately to use him on special teams in 2014 and 2015). I think in 2016 Sean Payton must have realized that Michael Thomas was his best bet for a #1 receiver since Thomas was amazing down field in coverage, and he improved a great deal this past year. This past year, Ted Ginn Jr pretty much was used as Cooks replacement with end around run plays and the slot position. (I'm hoping Ginn returns cause he seems to have finally found a good home with a team that utilizes his skill set. He gave us many exciting plays this year).

 

...

 

Wishing him the best and I think eventually he can learn his ways in New England. The pure talent is there, if he can improve in time, he could become a dangerous wide receiver. I say the trade worked out for both teams. Pats got Cooks who had his best career year this past season, and in New Orleans we got an O-lineman out of that pick and later took Kamara whom quickly became the first Saint in years to make me want to run out and purchase a jersey.

No doubt Saints benefited. But did they have to deal with the Pats of all teams? Pats r not rivals but they are the ultimate competition.

 

The beast needs to stop being fed!

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Speaking of the beast, has any of the previous dynasties been through as much drama? Seriously after all is said and done, espn ought to do a drama reenacting the years of this run. But in the near term I think a Broadway play can be done where BB a bit like Sinatra sings 'I like doing it my way. But it can't be done always. After all it's really not my team.'

 

As someone who became a Bears fan in the late 20th century I have to admit that with sagas like this I find the sport in the early 21st to be more fascinating.

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Well, that was quite a hectic week to say the least.  My modem died so I was without WiFi for a while.

 

Anyways, time for my final Power Rankings.  I may consider taking on the best players in each team's roster, but I'm struggling a bit with a few teams.  But be as it may, here are the final Power Rankings based on everything we knew about each team:

 

32.  Cleveland Browns (0-16):  Record speaks for itself.  Now watch as they lose 14 or 15 for the third straight season.

 

31.  New York Giants (3-13):  Hopefully, the firing of Ben McAdoo will finally free up this team's offense heading into the offseason.

 

30.  Indianapolis Colts (4-12):  No Andrew Luck at all this season.  This pretty much left them with two close victories against two abysmal ball clubs (Browns and pre-Jimmy G. 49ers), and a sweep of a Texas squad that lost all their best players due to injury--including rookie sensation Deshaun Watson.  At no point was this team ever good.  At least the Giants overachieved once or twice.

 

29.  New York Jets (5-11):  I will give the Jets props for greatly overachieving in spite having next to nobody worth a damn on either side of the ball.  Just imagine if Todd Bowles had a REAL team to work with for once?

 

28.  Denver Broncos (5-11):  Honestly, this team could have been ranked lower, but the Colts and Jets both lost pretty big to the Broncos, so they clearly get a bit of a break for once.  Also, if we are going to get Kirk Cousins, we better be willing to clean house in our Salary Cap so that we don't continue having a porous roster.  Von Miller is one thing, but we need to get rid of Demaryus Thomas, and maybe Aqib Talib, and start over from scratch.  And finally, we have Vance Joseph, and absolutely inept head coach if I've ever saw one (well outside of Cleveland, anyways), and he is allowed to stay.  Honestly, I don't see this ending well, but who knows?

 

27.  Chicago Bears (5-11):  I'll give this team props for victories against the Steelers, Panthers, and (albeit slightly tainted) Ravens.  But when Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone again, they couldn't win.  They couldn't win against a Falcons team doing everything they could to choke the game away.  They couldn't win a single game against their division rivals.  They couldn't beat the 49ers (and mind you, this was before we realized just how much success the 49ers would have with Jimmy G.).  They overachieved in parts, and swept the AFC North.  But otherwise, they sucked.

 

26.  Houston Texans (4-12):  Yes, this team got swept by the Colts, but I'm pretty much gauging overall merits of each of these teams.  The Jets and Bears had slivers of hope but were otherwise consistently bad, and the Broncos had a terrific start but fell off a cliff when we realized that Vance Joseph couldn't coach offenses to save his life.  The Texans at one point was 3-3 and were a force to be reckon with.  And then the injuries kicked in.  Other than a quality win against the Cardinals, they couldn't do anything right once Deshaun Watson tore his ACL.  God, 2017 was a lousy year when it came to injuries.  And trust me; this won't be the last time you'll hear of this concerning other teams on these Power Rankings.

 

25.  Miami Dolphins (6-10):  The next group of football teams are fairly difficult to sort out, but ultimately, I decided to go with Miami to round out the eight worst teams in the league.  Why?  Well, because after Ryan Tannehill tore his ACL during training camp, Adam Gase decided to sign Jay Cutler to the starting lineup.  Then they traded Jay Ajayi to the Eagles--and knowing how this season ended, we know this was a terrible mistake on Miami's part.  They derped to victory against the Chargers, had split their regular season records with the Jets and Patriots, upset the Falcons (who choked away YET another big lead), and bested the Titans and Raiders when they were without their star quarterbacks.  Aside from beating the Patriots, they never really had a quality win that demonstrated that they were indeed for real.  Maybe next year, they'll bounce back.  Provided Tom Brady isn't an ageless immortal or a sparkly vampire.

 

24.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11):  They may have finished with a worse record than the Dolphins, but they did win the head-to-head match up.  Not that it matters when you judge an entire season on a pedestal.  Unlike a lot of other teams ranked so far, the Buccaneers mostly had trouble dealing with a brutally tough schedule.  They were a last place team in a division that sent three teams to the playoffs, and had all finished with roughly the same records as well.  The fact they managed to steal a win and almost stole another from their division rivals definitely demonstrated just how loaded the NFC South was this year.  We'll wait and see if their miserable season was a product if being in a shockingly good division or not.  They've beaten the Saints, Jets, Dolphins, Bears, and Giants--the latter very narrowly.  So we'll have to wait and see where things go from here.

 

23.  Green Bay Packers (7-9):  This team early on looked like one of the premiere franchises in the league and a surefire Super Bowl contender.  They were 4-1 and riding high.  And then Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone against a brutal Vikings defense, and everything went to shit from there.  The reason they rate this high in spite of this?  Because they still managed to beat the Bears, Buccaneers, and Browns without him, so at the very least, it was safe to say that the Packers were marginally better than them even without Rodgers.  Needless to say, had Rodgers not gotten hurt, the Packers would have rated much higher.  And who knows just how much of an impact the NFC Playoff bracket would have had had Rodgers stuck around.

 

22.  Oakland Raiders (6-10):  Honestly, the Raiders probably had no business being as bad as they were this season.  Sure, Jack del Rio deserved much of the blame.  But want to know who else deserved the blame?  That offensive line that after Week 2 decided to fuck off and leave Derek Carr to be massacred all season long because Carr didn't like the political nature of the National Anthem protests.  Who knows how the John Gruden experiment works.  But given just how much they had to pay the man, chances are, the Raiders aren't going to have much to work with.

 

21.  Cincinnati Bengals (7-9):  Following an 0-3 start, the Bungles won their next two games before the bye.  Then they pretty much fluttered the rest of the season.  The only reason why the Bungles rate this high in spite of this is because they ended up overachieving, eliminating the Lions and Ravens from playoff contention in back-to-back weeks, even though they themselves were already eliminated.  Unfortunately, that pretty much meant that Marvin Lewis got to sign an extension.  At least it was just a two year extension, so we pretty much can assume that he is on thin ice as it is.

 

20.  San Francisco 49ers (6-10):  Jimmy G. pretty much single-handedly redeemed what was arguably one of the three or four absolute worst teams in the league all season long into where they are.  If forward momentum is any indication, we may very well see the 49ers make a quick escape from the basement heading into next season (especially since the Legion of Boom is getting on in years, and the Cardinals have become a retirement home).  So if I were doing a Power Ranking based on how each team ended their season, the 49ers would be in the top ten.  But one still has to remember that this team at one point in time made the Houston Texans post injuries look like the Super Bowl champion Eagles by comparison, and that was in spite losing six consecutive close games during that time frame.  It was so bad that fans were pondering if they would join the Browns and go 0-16 as they were the last team to get a win in this season.

 

19.  Arizona Cardinals (8-8):  Honestly, this was another team that spent a large majority of the season among the worst teams in the league.  Granted, they were nowhere near as bad as the 49ers were.  But they barely were able to escape with wins against the Colts and 49ers (who they would eventually sweep); and it wasn't until Carson Palmer was lost for the season that the Cardinals started finding their way again, as both Drew Stanton and Blaine Gabbert managed to generate more wins than Palmer could.  Of course, like the 49ers, they bested the Titans and Jaguars during that time, but they narrowly lost a defensive blunder bowl against the injury-ravaged Washington Redskins.  Unfortunately for them, unlike a ton of other teams in the lower half, the Cardinals look to be in a really dark and unpleasant place in the league in the foreseeable future.

 

18.  Baltimore Ravens (9-7):  Here's a record the Ravens I'm sure wish they did not possess.  Granted, they may have won nine games, but they never were able to best a playoff team a single time this year.  They played the Steelers twice, the Titans, Jaguars, and Vikings, and lost all five of these games.  Now, granted, if their only regular season losses were against these teams, they would have made the playoffs as the fifth seed.  But then they had to lose to the Bears and Bungles--the latter during the season finale where all they needed to do was win and then they were in.  Given that they are the fifth team introduced so far that never won a single game against a playoff team (the others being the Browns, Colts, Broncos and Packers), this pretty much makes them the best team in the league by far without a noteworthy win on their resume.  Did I mention the Ravens were one of the few teams this season that wasn't inflicted by the injury bug?

 

17.  Washington Redskins (7-9):  The Redskins were a very odd case.  They were an incredibly sneaky good team for a long while, and then the injury bug took its toll, and it gotten so bad that after a quality win in Seattle, they were only able to limp their way to just two victories.  One was against the retirement home that is the Cardinals, while the other was the lowly Denver Broncos.  Until it was abundantly clear they could no longer overcome the lack of depth on their roster, the Redskins were consistently one of the deceptively good teams in the league.  Had the Redskins made the playoffs, Kirk Cousins would have been an MVP candidate.

 

16.  Tennessee Titans (10-8):  Honestly, even with the Wild Card win against the Chiefs, I still considered the Titans to be the absolute worst playoff team in the league.  'Throughout the entire season, I kept asking myself the same question over and over again--how are they winning this many games?  Following a 7-3 start, the Steelers pretty much caused the Titans to fall back down to earth, and had the Jaguars not develop cold feet over the possibility of playing the Titans in the sixth seed, the Titans would not have made the playoffs at all.  Then the Playoff bracket would consist of the Bills and Ravens in the fifth and sixth seed respectively.  Seriously, they were by far the most overrated playoff team this year.

 

15.  Buffalo Bills (9-8):  Congrats, Buffalo!  Thanks to the Ravens eating their own shit in a must-win season finale, you were able to end your 17-year Postseason drought.  At least I can figure out what was so great about the Bills.  Specifically the defense and the LeSean McCoy (so much so one would have to wonder why he wasn't named League MVP).  Unfortunately, that was about all that they had going for them, as the three-game period where the Jets, Saints, and Chargers utterly manhandled them week in and week out demonstrated.  Maybe this will be a portent of things to come.  But considering that they pretty much gotten rid of all their other offensive playmakers causing people to wonder if they might be tanking the season, it was pretty clear they need to pick up some core pieces in the offseason to rebuild that offensive unit so they won't be so bloody one-sided.

 

14.  Dallas Cowboys (9-7):  Well, the good news was that the Cowboys were one of the few teams not to be hampered by the injury bug.  They did, however, lose their star running back Ezekiel Elliot to a six-game suspension in the midst of the toughest stretch of games of the season for them.  Regardless, they were eliminated when Zeke's return was met with playoff elimination at the hands of the Seattle Seahawks, a team whose entire Legion of Boom was wiped out by the injury bug.  Better luck next year, perhaps?  Provided they overcome the defending Super Bowl champion Eagles by then.

 

13.  Seattle Seahawks (9-7):  Their kicker was Blair Walsh, and the Legion of Boom was wiped out by a plague of injuries in the middle of the season.  Had the Seahawks actually made the playoffs, Russell Wilson for sure would have been named League MVP had his team made the playoffs.  Needless to say, because of that loss to the Falcons, even had Blair Walsh hadn't lost his confidence from that 2015 Wild Card game and actually made that game-winning field goal kick, they still would have found themselves on the outside looking in.  Karma's quite a bitch, isn't she?

 

12.  Detroit Lions (9-7):  One bad call from the officials pretty much ended up costing the Lions a spot in the Playoff bracket altogether.  Why?  Because it took away a game-winning touchdown pass against the Falcons, and that was the reason why the Lions were on the outside looking in.  Even had Jim Caldwell not choke big time against the Bungles, the Lions would still be on the outside looking in because of that piss poor officiating job early on in the season.

 

11.  LA Chargers (9-7):  Ultimately, it was a tough call between the Seahawks, Lions, and Chargers in where they'd rank in relationship to one another.  The Seahawks and Lions both lost to the Falcons which in turn cost them a spot in the playoffs at the end of the day.  On the other hand, the Chargers needed the Titans to lose and the Ravens to win in order to clinch a playoff berth as the sixth seed, and they could have found themselves in the driver's seat for the division crown had they won a couple weeks earlier to the Chiefs.  Or had ANY of those four losses to start their season thanks to porous field goal kicking went their way.  Ultimately, I chose the Chargers, because they were pretty much a 9-3 team the rest of the way.  Considering just how bloody close they were to making it back to the playoffs in spite that 0-4 hole they dug themselves into, that pretty much made them the most impressive of the teams on the outside looking in.

 

10.  Kansas City Chiefs (10-7):  After a 5-0 start, they went 1-6 before getting their act together and winning their last four to clinch the division.  Then Andy Reid did Andy Reid-like things and choked against the absolute worst playoff team this season.  Kareem Hunt was at least a beast this season.  But when will coaches learn the lesson about defeating the opposing teams in the 4th quarter?  Clearly, in Andy's world, the Falcons were the defending Super Bowl champions.

 

9.  Carolina Panthers (11-6):  Not to take anything away from the Panthers, but after spoiling Aaron Rodgers' grand return, the Panthers looked very unimpressive.  Perhaps a part of it comes from the fact that the Buccaneers were a pretty good team that simply had the short end of the stick because the NFC South was that good.  But we know for a fact that the Panthers were a damn good football team in their own right.  They simply found the Saints to be their own personal brick wall.  Had no idea how to handle a team that could both run and throw the football.

 

8.  Atlanta Falcons (11-7):  The Falcons seem to be transitioning more towards a defensive unit.  Unfortunately, all they can really do is Prevent Defense, which isn't very effective in the modern NFL, especially if your offense took a nosedive.  The team also had its fair share of close calls just to make the playoffs--bad officiating gave them the game against the Lions; Ezekiel Elliot's suspension began right before the Cowboys were set to play the Falcons; and the Seahawks were not just plagued by injuries, but were reliant half the time on a kicker that has lost his confidence just to attempt the game-winning score...only to fail in the end.  Still, they did what they needed to do, and they defeated the high-powered Rams offense in the Wild Card round rather convincingly.  In the end, only a brick wall could stop them.  It's name was the Eagles.

 

7.  LA Rams (11-6):  Yes, the Falcons did beat the Rams in resounding fashion in the Wild Card round.  So in that sense, you could argue that the Falcons were better.  Personally, I think it was mostly nerves of playing a playoff game in what was essentially a nonexistent homefield advantage that got them in the end.  Sean McVay may have won Coach of the Year, but he was clearly a deer in headlights in that game.  The fact of the matter is, the Falcons mostly had dumb luck against other playoff hopefuls that helped them make the playoffs, and the Rams mostly scorched the earth against all but the absolute best teams in football.  They at least beat the Saints though, and may have assisted in the Eagles' Super Bowl victory.  Honestly, 7 or 8 are just about right, and looking at the overall product, the Rams are just about right at home this season.

 

6.  Pittsburgh Steelers (13-4):  You barely escaped with a win against the Browns.  Twice.  You swept your division and made it a lot hard than it needed to.  I will give you this much; you were pretty much robbed by bad officiating in your game against the Patriots.  But a good idea on how not to get in that position in the first place would probably be to actually convert on 3rd down right at the 2-minute warning!  It didn't matter since you were one-and-done in the playoffs and mostly derped your way to 13 wins thanks to a piss-easy schedule.  And that was in spite constantly playing down to your perceived notions of your opponents.  Especially against a team that utterly annihilated them early on in the regular season.  Seriously, their hubris will ultimately prove to be their downfall.  Especially since this was probably the last time they could seriously compete for a Super Bowl with the roster they had acquired.

 

5.  Jacksonville Jaguars (12-7):  Had the Jaguars properly closed out the AFC Championship against the Patriots, they might have rated higher on the Power Rankings.  What ultimately held them back was how their regular season had ended.  Following an 8-3 start, the Jaguars pretty much stumbled to 10-6, losing to the Cardinals, 49ers, and Titans.  The 49ers were one thing since Jimmy G. really turned things around for them after they looked like utter trash for pretty much the entire season up until he started for them.  I have another possible theory that the main reason the Jaguars were constantly being singled out by the refs while the Patriots were largely ignored was because of their blatant concussive hit on Rob Gronkowski, which even back in the heyday of the Steel Curtain would have generated penalties.  And as such, the Jaguars defense weren't able to effectively combat Brady and the Patriots without getting singled out for every single solitary thing, even if said thing was entirely inconsequential.  Maybe next year, the Jaguars will make the big push for a Super Bowl appearance.  Provided, of course, the Texans don't beat them to it.  Seriously, if they actually stay healthy, the Texans have the potential to be a force to be reckon with next year.

 

4.  New Orleans Saints (12-6):  The next two or three slots, I feel, were really, really close.  Ultimately, I decided that the last second loss to the Vikings places the Saints at number 4.  That was how close it was between these two teams in terms of the Power Rankings.  Maybe the Saints had a more realistic shot at beating the Eagles and reaching the Super Bowl, had they covered Stephon Diggs on the final play of the game.  But given how the NFC Championship game ultimately ended, we will never know for certain.  That is ultimately why the Saints aren't ranked any higher.  The main reason why they are ranked this ridiculously high is due to the nature of their division.  Following an 0-2 start in which they were soundly beaten by the Vikings and Patriots, they were utterly dominant for a while.  And then they eventually had to play the Falcons and Rams.  Yes, they split their series with the Falcons.  And then they were stunned during the season finale against the Buccaneers.  It is ultimately proof of just how tough the NFC South really was, and that was in spite going 3-0 against the Panthers.  So in a sense, they definitely get some lenience from me for not going 13-3 during the regular season.

 

3.  Minnesota Vikings (14-4):  I actually debated ranking this team higher than the Patriots for a little while, but given just how badly they lost the NFC Championship to the Eagles, I cannot possibly give them such consideration.  But be as it may, they had arguably the best defense in the league alongside the Jaguars, and if not for the fact that their offensive line wasn't very good, the Vikings could have possibly reached the Super Bowl under Case Keenum.  Ultimately, they lost to the team with the 2nd best offense and the 3rd best defense.

 

2.  New England Patriots (15-4):  So having a defense so pitiful that it made the 2013 Broncos' unit look like the 2015 lineup (just imagine a combination of the 2013 Broncos offense and the 2015 defense; we'd probably go 18-1 losing that one game to the Colts) finally caught up to the Patriots.  If not for the fact that Brady and Gronk were practically unstoppable, the Patriots would have lost that game 41-10.  Seriously, I've never seen a Super Bowl in which the defense was almost completely nonexistent, to the point that there were more offensive yards in that game than in any other game in history.  Regular and Postseason alike.  In an alternate reality that Brady had enough protection to not get stripped with 2 minutes and change to play, he probably would have won his fifth League MVP as the first 500+ yard passer in a Super Bowl.  The sad reality of the matter was, this was probably the final year the Patriots could reasonably compete for a Super Bowl, especially given just how much Belichick invested in stockpiling his team's roster for possibly one last hurrah at the big game.  Brady will be 41 next year; Malcolm Butler is presumably gone; and while it probably won't happen, Rob Gronkowski is already considering retirement.  Unless Brady is either secretly an ageless immortal--he probably drank that immortality potion from Death Becomes Her following his torn ACL--or is secretly a sparkling vampire, I somehow doubt the Patriots have another championship in them.  Then again, maybe the Patriots build a lethal defense and add a sixth Lombardi on that.  Who knows?

 

1.  Philadelphia Eagles (16-3):  No matter what happens, by virtue of the fact that the Eagles have won the Super Bowl, they are by virtue the best team in football.  And it wasn't even like how the Giants derped their way to two championships against the Patriots, or how the Patriots beat the Seahawks or Falcons thanks to some derp coaching decisions from the latter two teams, either.  In a game with literally no offense to speak of, the Eagles consistently demonstrated themselves as the superior football team.  In addition, they were the best team in football, and had it not been for Carson Wentz's injury, the Eagles would have had the league's best offense.  Their defense ranked third in the league as well, and the point differential was the absolute best of any team in the league as well.  It was pretty clear that the Eagles were not just an all-time great offense or an all-time great defense.  This Eagles squad was one of the best teams in league history, and was one of the most exciting and complete units we have seen since the Greatest Show on Turf.  And considering just how much this team was ravaged by injuries, especially with their MVP candidate Carson Wentz tearing his ACL before the season concluded (and thus shifting the MVP curse over to Brady and thus lifting the burdon off Nick Foles shoulders), it says a lot at just how much depth this team had.  Clearly, Bill Belichick forgot that Nick Foles actually was a good quarterback--he was one of three quarterbacks in our lifetimes to have thrown seven touchdown passes in a single game, and he did it in the same year as Peyton Manning's record-shattering season.  Hopefully, he wins one or two more championships before he retires.  It would be nice for him to reach the Hall of Fame someday.

 

Also, one last note.  Eagle fans, you were supposed to eat shit after you lose the Super Bowl.  Not win it!  Seriously, congrats and all on your team ending their Super Bowl curse, but what the fuck's wrong with you guys!?

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7 hours ago, Mike Gordan said:

12.  Detroit Lions (9-7):  One bad call from the officials pretty much ended up costing the Lions a spot in the Playoff bracket altogether.  Why?  Because it took away a game-winning touchdown pass against the Falcons, and that was the reason why the Lions were on the outside looking in.  Even had Jim Caldwell not choke big time against the Bungles, the Lions would still be on the outside looking in because of that piss poor officiating job early on in the season.

 

1.  Philadelphia Eagles (16-3):  No matter what happens, by virtue of the fact that the Eagles have won the Super Bowl, they are by virtue the best team in football.  And it wasn't even like how the Giants derped their way to two championships against the Patriots, or how the Patriots beat the Seahawks or Falcons thanks to some derp coaching decisions from the latter two teams, either.  In a game with literally no offense to speak of, the Eagles consistently demonstrated themselves as the superior football team.  In addition, they were the best team in football, and had it not been for Carson Wentz's injury, the Eagles would have had the league's best offense.  Their defense ranked third in the league as well, and the point differential was the absolute best of any team in the league as well.  It was pretty clear that the Eagles were not just an all-time great offense or an all-time great defense.  This Eagles squad was one of the best teams in league history, and was one of the most exciting and complete units we have seen since the Greatest Show on Turf.  And considering just how much this team was ravaged by injuries, especially with their MVP candidate Carson Wentz tearing his ACL before the season concluded (and thus shifting the MVP curse over to Brady and thus lifting the burdon off Nick Foles shoulders), it says a lot at just how much depth this team had.  Clearly, Bill Belichick forgot that Nick Foles actually was a good quarterback--he was one of three quarterbacks in our lifetimes to have thrown seven touchdown passes in a single game, and he did it in the same year as Peyton Manning's record-shattering season.  Hopefully, he wins one or two more championships before he retires.  It would be nice for him to reach the Hall of Fame someday.

 

Also, one last note.  Eagle fans, you were supposed to eat shit after you lose the Super Bowl.  Not win it!  Seriously, congrats and all on your team ending their Super Bowl curse, but what the fuck's wrong with you guys!?

 

I was at that Falcons @ Lions game. My friends and I went from extreme joy to extreme disappointment. While walking down the steps on the way to the exit, I was able to see Jake Elliott nail that 61 yard field goal against the Giants on the big screen at Ford Field as soon as the game was over. Everyone in earshot found out what an Eagles fan I am and my day was saved lol. I hope the hometown Lions here are successful with Matt Patricia, but I am skeptical. Feels like all the good assistants are already in place elsewhere because they waited until after the Super Bowl to make a hire. Hopefully he will draw some talent into their organization. I bad-mouthed them for letting Anquan Boldin go after '16 without getting a true replacement to offset the loss of his production on the field. He was so reliable on 3rd down in '16! Can't agree more that the Falcons loss kept the Lions on the outside all season afterwards. 

 

Words cannot describe how proud of Nick Foles I am. I truely never doubted him or picked against the Eagles all season. I've loved them since the 1992 playoff game against the Saints, seeing Reggie White get a safety. Not to mention 'Who is this QB Eagles guy? He's so good they couldn't afford the rights to his name for the game lol.'

Brian Dawkins makes the Hall of Fame.. I wish I could bottle Sunday and have it forever.

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11 hours ago, Mike Gordan said:

2.  New England Patriots (15-4):  So having a defense so pitiful that it made the 2013 Broncos' unit look like the 2015 lineup (just imagine a combination of the 2013 Broncos offense and the 2015 defense; we'd probably go 18-1 losing that one game to the Colts) finally caught up to the Patriots.  If not for the fact that Brady and Gronk were practically unstoppable, the Patriots would have lost that game 41-10.  Seriously, I've never seen a Super Bowl in which the defense was almost completely nonexistent, to the point that there were more offensive yards in that game than in any other game in history.  Regular and Postseason alike.  In an alternate reality that Brady had enough protection to not get stripped with 2 minutes and change to play, he probably would have won his fifth League MVP as the first 500+ yard passer in a Super Bowl.  The sad reality of the matter was, this was probably the final year the Patriots could reasonably compete for a Super Bowl, especially given just how much Belichick invested in stockpiling his team's roster for possibly one last hurrah at the big game.  Brady will be 41 next year; Malcolm Butler is presumably gone; and while it probably won't happen, Rob Gronkowski is already considering retirement.  Unless Brady is either secretly an ageless immortal--he probably drank that immortality potion from Death Becomes Her following his torn ACL--or is secretly a sparkling vampire, I somehow doubt the Patriots have another championship in them.  Then again, maybe the Patriots build a lethal defense and add a sixth Lombardi on that.  Who knows?

 

1.  Philadelphia Eagles (16-3):  No matter what happens, by virtue of the fact that the Eagles have won the Super Bowl, they are by virtue the best team in football.  And it wasn't even like how the Giants derped their way to two championships against the Patriots, or how the Patriots beat the Seahawks or Falcons thanks to some derp coaching decisions from the latter two teams, either.  In a game with literally no offense to speak of, the Eagles consistently demonstrated themselves as the superior football team.  In addition, they were the best team in football, and had it not been for Carson Wentz's injury, the Eagles would have had the league's best offense.  Their defense ranked third in the league as well, and the point differential was the absolute best of any team in the league as well.  It was pretty clear that the Eagles were not just an all-time great offense or an all-time great defense.  This Eagles squad was one of the best teams in league history, and was one of the most exciting and complete units we have seen since the Greatest Show on Turf.  And considering just how much this team was ravaged by injuries, especially with their MVP candidate Carson Wentz tearing his ACL before the season concluded (and thus shifting the MVP curse over to Brady and thus lifting the burdon off Nick Foles shoulders), it says a lot at just how much depth this team had.  Clearly, Bill Belichick forgot that Nick Foles actually was a good quarterback--he was one of three quarterbacks in our lifetimes to have thrown seven touchdown passes in a single game, and he did it in the same year as Peyton Manning's record-shattering season.  Hopefully, he wins one or two more championships before he retires.  It would be nice for him to reach the Hall of Fame someday.


This is such trash.

 

1. 18 Patriots players were on IR for the Super Bowl, with notable depth at defense being chief among them, including Defensive Team Captain, Hightower. Philadelphia had 12 on IR, and most of them were trash, excluding Wentz and (maybe) Sproles.
2. Tom Brady takes better care of himself as a Quarterback than any QB in league history. He'll make 41 seem like 38. That's a 'pubes bet.

3. I LOOOOOOVE that you give the Eagles a line about shoulda-coula-woulda had Wentz been around, but don't do the same for key Patriots players on IR.

4. There is no reason to believe that Nick Foles wasn't the reincarnation of Matt Flynn. Literally, very little difference between the two leading up to the Super Bowl. That you're using hindsight to give Foles credit as a "good QB" is pathetic.

Your analysis is trash, as it has been all year long. That you spend the time to write it all doesn't make it is any less trash.
 

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15 minutes ago, Yak said:


This is such trash.

 

1. 18 Patriots players were on IR for the Super Bowl, with notable depth at defense being chief among them, including Defensive Team Captain, Hightower. Philadelphia had 12 on IR, and most of them were trash, excluding Wentz and (maybe) Sproles.
2. Tom Brady takes better care of himself as a Quarterback than any QB in league history. He'll make 41 seem like 38. That's a 'pubes bet.

3. I LOOOOOOVE that you give the Eagles a line about shoulda-coula-woulda had Wentz been around, but don't do the same for key Patriots players on IR.

4. There is no reason to believe that Nick Foles wasn't the reincarnation of Matt Flynn. Literally, very little difference between the two leading up to the Super Bowl. That you're using hindsight to give Foles credit as a "good QB" is pathetic.

Your analysis is trash, as it has been all year long. That you spend the time to write it all doesn't make it is any less trash.
 

 

The salt is real with this one. But, yes, N.E. at full strength slaughters PHI at full strength. No question.

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Nah, no salt. The Eagles beat the Patriots fair and square. And I'm happy for Philadelphia, in that having gone throughout history without a SB win for that town, specifically, is almost unfathomable. If I have any salt in me, it is for the Hoodie, to be honest. Sitting Butler was a huge mistake. Eric Rowe did fine in his place, but an early touchdown is attributed to Rowe not being prepared to start. That touchdown could have been the difference maker. There's no excuse to sit a player who played 97.8% of regular season snaps. None. Patricia gets a bunch of the blame, too. He was out-coached by Philadelphia. He was being too gimmicky for his own good, taking Gilmore off Ashlon to start the game.

If it's true that Belichick sat Butler without a significant cause, then he was his own undoing. Frankly, it's not the first time, either. He's still the G.O.A.T. of coaching, but the reality is that his legacy is going to be marred by what many perceive to be his inability to suppress his ego.

Edited by Yak

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7 minutes ago, Yak said:

The Eagles beat the Patriots fair and square. And I'm happy for Philadelphia, in that having gone throughout history without a SB win for that town, specifically, is almost unfathomable. If I have any salt in me, it is for the Hoodie, to be honest. Sitting Butler was a huge mistake. Eric Rowe did fine in his place, but an early touchdown is attributed to Rowe not being prepared to start. That touchdown could have been the difference maker. There's no excuse to sit a player who played 97.8% of regular season snaps. None. Patricia gets a bunch of the blame, too. He was out-coached by Philadelphia. He was being too gimmicky for his own good, taking Gilmore off Ashlon to start the game.

If it's true that Belichick sat Butler without a significant cause, then he was his own undoing. Frankly, it's not the first time, either. He's still the G.O.A.T. of coaching, but the reality is that his legacy is going to be marred by what many perceive to be his inability to suppress his ego.

 

Agree with 99.9% of this. 

 

I still blame Belichick. 

1) Doug Pederson kicked Belichick's ass and coached circles around him

2) Belichick's ego prevented the Pats from being the best version of themselves when it mattered most. 

 

Again, not saying the Pats 100% would have won if Butler played... but the defense was ineffective - especially Rowe, Bademosi and Richards - who were playing the Butler role.  Butler should have been on the field.  I question not starting him in the first place, but not playing him in the 2nd half after the defense was shredded up and down the field on every single possession is inexcusable.

 

I keep torturing myself and reading things like this, which further proves the "put Butler in the game" point:

https://nesn.com/2018/02/super-bowl-lii-film-review-where-patriots-missed-malcolm-butler/

 

What Belichick did is equivalent to a successful boxer who fights southpaw and makes it to a title bout... then in that title bout he changes from southpaw to orthodox stance... and gets his brains beat in for the first half of the fight... then keeps fighting orthodox instead of switching back to southpaw.  Why do you make the change in the first place... and why don't you adjust when you realize it's not working?  Makes zero sense to me.

 

Injuries are what they are.  Sucked not having Julian, Hightower & Cooks, sure.  But every team has to deal with injuries at some point.

 

The sad truth is that Brady played an all time great game.  505 passing yards is the most in a Super Bowl Playoff game all time.  He was at his all time best... and the defense choked.

 

Brady is GOAT.  Belichick can eat sh*t.

Patricia can take a hike, too. 

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10 hours ago, davefmurray said:

N.E. at full strength slaughters PHI at full strength. No question.

61FA8-armament.png

 

No armaments like the Eagles armaments, 'cause the Eagles armaments don't stop, don't stop

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Bytheway, forget what I just said - and bytheway, you guys are forgetting Edelman - if Edelman's in the game, he's making that Hail Mary reception, off the deflection (before it hits the ground) ... to push that thing to Overtime.

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Speaking of hindsight's 20/20, though, Remember this:

 

K.C beat both y'all;  Week 1, and Week 2.

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