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NFL 2019-20 Season Discussion

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This Sunday unusually there'll be only 2 late games. One is Jags at Titans. The other is Cowboys at Patriots which the WHOLE country will be getting. It's not a rivalry game but people are eager to watch it.

 

Both teams are said to be the 2 most hated. But there's many out there who believe one is worth more hating than the other. To those who hate both but the Patriots more PLEASE consider this. Just imagine we lived in a world where the Cowboys had more Yankee-like success say 8 SB wins at least and the next closest is 6 at most. Is that a world you want to live in?

 

The way it is now isn't so bad. It's kind of even. Pats & Steelers tied at 6 then Dal & SF at 5. I much rather have it the way it is now.

 

As a non-Pats fan I think the cheating thing is overblown. The video incident in '07 at the Jets and deflated footballs in the '14 AFC title game to me amount to as petty offenses. The video thing was way back in week 1 the first when the new video restriction was instituted. In that '14 AFC title game deflated footballs were corrected at halftime and the Pats did even better in the 2nd half.

 

What about other teams' offenses in the NFL and elsewhere? What about Rodgers preferring footballs inflated aboved the rule? What about the Falcons crowd noise? The Saints bountygate? And many other instances in the league going back decades?

 

Why are so many people giving the Astros a pass where the sign stealing occurred at the '17 WS of all events?

 

Let's be right about this and not lazily single out teams.

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No one is giving the Astros a pass....at least not on sports talk radio. 

 

Spygate was a much bigger offense...we don't really know how deep that went. It was kind of swept under the rug by the league. Bountygate was  also a big deal. 

 

The deflated footballs was only a big deal in that it seemed like the Patriots didn't want to come out and admit yes we deflated the balls. The actual effect of the deflated balls was negligible. 

 

Mostly they are just hated because they've been so good for so long. People are tired of seeing them in the Super Bowl. 

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16 hours ago, Bodom said:


Except this has been disproven by facts and actual stats. 

 

https://patriotsdynasty.info/blog/2019/01-02/myth-easy-afc-east-definitive-guide
 

Except these stats do not at any point get to the heart of the matter.  Why?  Because not all divisions are created equal as far as the Patriots are concerned.

 

1.  An NFC team might be able to deny the Patriots a Super Bowl title, but they can't keep the Patriots out of the playoffs.

2.  Teams from the AFC North, South, and West might send the Patriots home early in the post-season, but they cannot keep the Patriots from making the playoffs.

3.  The only teams that can keep the Patriots out of the playoffs are the Bills, Dolphins and Jets.  It doesn't matter if every single team in the NFL beats up on the Patriots during the regular season; if the Patriots finish the season 6-10, and all 6 of those wins came against their division rivals, they're winning that division, especially if said division is utter trash.

 

And here's another fact; the Patriots reached the Super Bowl 5 times this decade, winning three of those times.  They've made the playoffs every single year this decade, never finishing below the number 2 seed.  The only time they failed to reach the Conference Championship was back in 2010, when they had to face the Jets in the Divisional Round.  Additionally, the 2010 season was the only season another team in the AFC East actually made it out of the Wild Card Round.

 

Finally, the Jets, Dolphins, and Bills thus far made the playoffs exactly once apiece--all as the 6th seed, and only the Jets winning the opening round.  When you factor all this into consideration, this has less to do with the fact that the Patriots beat up on their division and no one else; it has more to do with the fact that their division has been routinely pathetic.  No other division has three teams in the bottom ten of my power rankings, and no other features two teams in the bottom five.

 

The fact is, if the AFC East hadn't been so pathetically awful all throughout the entire decade, the Patriots dynasty would have ended a long time ago.  The Broncos aren't going to keep the Patriots out of the playoffs.  Neither will the Ravens; the Giants; the Eagles; the Colts; or anybody else for that matter.  The only way the Patriots dynasty will ever end is when the balance of power shifts within their own division.  If the Bills, Jets or Dolphins fail to knock the Patriots off their pedestal and win a Super Bowl, the Patriots will just keep on winning over and over and over again.  Even if Brady and Belichick croak tomorrow, it isn't going to stop.

 

That is a fact.  And no amount of pro-Patriot or mainstream media statistics will ever shed light on this truth.  Or maybe you can come up with a championship dynasty that ended in a vacuum, without any assistance from their own division.

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4 hours ago, Mike Gordan said:

The fact is, if the AFC East hadn't been so pathetically awful all throughout the entire decade, the Patriots dynasty would have ended a long time ago. 


This is clearly opinion because the fact that the Patriots beat everyone, not only the teams in their own division, at a dominant rate proves this incorrect. 
 

I’m not saying the AFC East hasn’t been weak for the past 15 years. I’m saying it doesn’t matter. Put the Pats in the North South or West and you still have a dynasty. 
 

I’m also not trying to be a homer. I’m tougher on the Pats than most haters I know. I’d be kidding myself if I didn’t think the dynasty was in it’s final year(s). But if what you are saying was true, Brady and Co. would get knocked out by non divisional teams in the playoffs more often than not. Or not have a 6-3 Super Bowl record. 
 

They beat the rest of the NFL at the same rate that they beat the AFC East - and that’s all the fact you need to disprove your opinion. 

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I refuse to enter the ol' "But the Patriots' division..." argument. It's an absurd thought promoted by absurd people.

 

What I will say, though, is that we're nearly done with 3/4s of the season, and I still have no idea what the Pats are going to do on offense in the playoffs. It's clear they're going to shape the offense to compliment the historic defense, which means generally low scoring affairs. Tom Brady must be losing his sh*t right now.

 

Also, who is the first team to bite on employing Jason Garrett after he's canned?

Edited by Yak

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andom Power Rankings here:

 

Eliminated:

 

32.  The Bungles:  Sitting alone at Bottom Tier.  Got to be absolutely dreadful to be eliminated from playoff contention before everyone even had their bye.

 

Chopping Block:

 

31.  The Lolphins (2-9):  They'd probably rank even lower than the Bungles had they not won a couple games.  Who's the best player on that team, anyways?  The punter?

 

30.  The Deadskins (2-9):  Since they beat the Lolphins and finally got a win in, I'm ranking them just slightly higher as a result--especially since the team finally got their second win.

 

29.  The Derps (2-9):  Kind of easy to rank these teams based on who beat who so far.  They still have a date with the Lolphins in a couple weeks.  But somebody save Saquon before he becomes the modern day Barry Sanders.

 

28.  The Chokers (3-8):  Somebody call Dr. Heimlich!  The Denver Broncos are choking on Von Miller's chickens!  Seriously these guys lost 6 games each by a single score, and only one of those games (Week 1 against the Raiders) had them losing big up until the end.

 

27.  Patricia's golf cart (3-7-1):  Safe to say that the team has all but effectively given up on Matt Patricia?  Not at all surprising since the guy takes coaching tips from the coach from Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

 

26.  Grand Canyon Retirement Home (3-7-1):  Even though this team hasn't beaten anybody worth a damn, at least they haven't thrown in the towel yet.  The fact they challenged the 49ers and came close to beating them both times definitely does seem to suggest that they still have some fight left in them.

 

25.  28-3 (3-8):  Ranks this high for utterly dismantling the New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers...only to hand the Yuks their first win in a long time.  Speaking of which....

 

In the Hunt:

 

24.  Famous Jameis Bakery (4-7):  Finally decided he was a Hall of Fame-caliber QB for a game and completely demolished the Falcons this week.  Famous Jameis decided to take a Holiday or Thanksgiving, so no turnovers this week.

 

23.  "Sacksonville" (4-7):  The Jaguars' playoff chances are steadily decreasing with each passing week, so they are clearly at the very edge of being low and mid-tier by my own estimation.  Abundantly clear 2017 was a one-hit wonder season for the Jags.

 

22.  Death of Superman (5-6):  Kind of Surprising to see the Panthers this low; then again, ranking doesn't really matter so much as performance.  And after an 0-2 start put an end to Cam Newton season and they miraculously pulled off 5 convincing wins in a row, they then realized they're not that great, and lost four straight.  Their window's officially closed.

 

21.  Fuck you, Spanos (4-7):  Another team whose window appears closed for Philip Rivers, aka, the greatest quarterback to never so much as sniff a Super Bowl.  All because Spanos decided to fire Marty Schottenheimer in spite a franchise best 14-2 record--seriously!?  What the fuck's wrong with you!?

 

20.  The Butt Fumble (4-7):  For virtually the entire season, the Jets looked comparably incompetent to the likes of the Lolphins, Derps, Deadskins, and Bungles, with their lone shining light being a dominant win against the Cowboys.  Since their 1-7 start, they've finally realized that they need to make some semblance of forward progress, and they wound up winning in convincing fashion in recent weeks.  Their latest victim?  Why, a playoff contender in the Oakland Raiders.  Couldn't bother to show up any sooner, eh, Butt Fumble?

 

19.  A New Hope? (5-6):  At least the Browns remain comfortably in the hunt for a wild card berth.  Similar to the Jets, I have no idea why it took the Browns this long before getting their shit together and start pulling out wins out of their ass.  Maybe it had something to do with Kareem Hunt's suspension?  Hopefully, they'll learn their lesson from this and not enter the next season feeling cocky again.  Or a miracle occurs and they somehow win out to clinch a playoff spot for the first time since 2002.

 

18.  Den of the McCaskey's (5-6):  Proof positive of all of a team's good fortunes hinging on the dysfunction of their own division actually helps propel their ranks into Super Bowl contention the year before.  But at least they have the talent and a decent backup QB.  Take note, "Sacksonville."

 

17.  Window's Closin' Fast (6-5):  Already on their last legs as a Super Bowl contender, I see.  That's what you get when the only conceivable threat in your division was a rebuilding Seahawks team the last couple years, and their crappy o-line kept them from winning more than 10 games.  Now they aren't able to coast to a division title like they are the New England Patriots and actually have to compete with a Seahawks and 49ers team that are healthier than they've ever been before.  Then again, considering the core strength of the Rams' offense depended on RB Todd Gurley for success, and he has arthritis in his knee, it's kind of difficult to lean in that hard on the team.

 

16.  Fly, Reich, Fly (5-6):  With the past couple seasons for a team with so much potential that they steamrolled the NFC on way to a Super Bowl upset against the Patriots only to fall back down to mediocrity, I think it's safe to say the primary reason for their struggle has been the same for the Atlanta Falcons--they miss their offensive coordinator, who have since been hired on as head coaches for other football teams (and both found great success recently).  Was Colts head coach Frank Reich truly the glue that held that 2017 team together?  I think so.

 

15.  Draining the Swamp (6-5):  They got rid of Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown--two talented cancers that would almost encourage a double-take on Colin Kaepernick.  Sucked really bad.  Everyone else worth a damn is constantly injured, including Ju-Ju and Connor, and Big Ben is lost for the year and likely cooked as well.  The end of an era is over, and now it's time for the Steelers to rebuild.  So how the hell is this team still alive and well in the playoff hunt?  Of course, they're going to have to win out in order to hold on to the 6th and final seed, so we'll see what happens soon enough.

 

14.  Can't Think of a Nickname (6-5):  Considering that the entire teens are ranked largely based on who I think has the best shot at a playoff berth, I have to rank a team chasing down two open seats as slightly better than teams that only really have either the remote chances at the 6th seed at best, or in the case of the Eagles, a division crown.  At least the Titans can claim to be chasing both a division title and the wide-open 6th seed.  Not really sure what else to say about the Titans; they're that bloody forgettable, and are almost certainly going to be one-and-done at the hands of the 3 seed in the playoffs.

 

13.  If Only Luck Was On Their Side (6-5):  I honestly think the treatment Andrew Luck received was such a huge disgrace--both from the fans during the preseason, and especially the team's apathetic management and coaching.  The new regime changes in coach Reich and whoever-it-is-at-least-it's-not-Grigson tried to salvage this team, and honestly, had Andrew Luck not retired, this team would almost certainly be a Super Bowl juggernaut compared to the likes of the Ravens, 49ers or Seahawks, and it's safe to see why; this defense is an absolute beast, and the entire offense is loaded with stars.  If only Luck was still there with the Colts.

 

12.  Last Ride in the Black Hole (6-5):  I should probably dock a team that allowed themselves to get steamrolled by the Jets, except A) the Raiders are still pursuing two playoff spots--the division and the final wild card spot; and B ) The higher-ranked teams here on mid-tier all lost to the Jets anyways.  So really, the Jets aren't going to leave much of a dent in a team's playoff prospects, especially a team that actually has some invaluable tie-breakers tucked away in their pocket.

 

11.  They Hate You More Than the Patriots (6-5):  The Cowboys are complaining over rigged officiating and some phantom tripping penalties pulled out of the ref's ass.  But let's be real here; you're the Dallas Cowboys.  You're America's Team.  They're the New England Patriots.  You're playing in Foxborough.  There was absolutely no way these officials or the rest of the league were EVER going to let you win that game.  As sick and tired every non-Patriot fan might be of their success, they at least they will breathe a sigh of relief every night that "at least the Cowboys aren't winning a championship."  It's like what the title said; "They Hate You more than the Patriots."  Just be grateful you're still in control over your playoff destiny.

 

Almost Certainly Playoff Bound:

 

10.  Hail to the Chiefs (7-4):  Maybe I'm just a cynic, but similar to the Rams, it's abundantly clear the success of this Chief's offense hinged on RB Kareem Hunt before he got Me-Too'd by a well-timed video release likely sponsored by a rival football team looking for an advantage.  Because ever since the Chiefs cut all ties with Hunt, they've regressed far past any semblance of being a Super Bowl contender.  But who knows?  Maybe they'll have a resurgence and close their season out on a five-game winning streak.  I hope so; at least then, that will be one more loss for the Patriots.  At least their defense is better this year than it was last year as well.

 

9.  Modern John Elway (7-4):  Somehow, I feel a bit dirty ranking this team as low as I did.  But considering the proof lies in how far ahead of them teams like the Ravens, 49ers and Seahawks appear to be in terms of talent compared to the Texans, and somehow, I'm kind of shocked they even rank higher than the Chiefs.  The Texans in many respects remind me of the 1980's Denver Broncos; they look like a team whose quarterback Deshaun Watson has the potential to will his team to Super Bowl contention year-after-year only to be smoked by whoever they end up facing in the big game simply because the talent for success simply wasn't there.  Both in the roster and in the coaching staff.  And it does look abundantly clear that Deshaun Watson is that kind of transcendent quarterback.  If stats and Super Bowl victories didn't tell the whole story about the greatness of an NFL quarterback, Elway would be regarded as the greatest to have ever played the game.  Watson is that kind of player.  Too bad I like your chances against the Patriots even less than the Chiefs.

 

8.  The Patriot Killers? (8-3):  If not for the fact that the Patriots seem entitled to a Super Bowl berth every year since the retirement of Peyton Manning, I would probably rank the Bills that much higher.  Why?  Because even in Foxborough, I am convinced that the Bills are at least one of the few teams left on the Patriots' schedule who can defeat the Patriots, if not defeat them in the divisional round (let's face it; the only way the Patriots DON'T get a first round bye once again is if they lose out to the Bills, Chiefs and Texans).  And I technically don't consider this team that much better than the Chiefs or Texans.  Heck, as far as talent level is concerned, I don't consider them that much better than most of the higher-ups still in the hunt.

 

7.  Can You Please Win a Goddamn Super Bowl Already!? (8-3):  With the Eagles Super Bowl victory in 2017, the Vikings remain the only team with an all-time winning record--both pre- and post-merger--to have never won a Super Bowl, and the only team with at least 3 winning records every decade not to win a single championship.  They even reached the Conference Championship at least once every decade.  I'm not saying the Vikings have the makings of greatness with Kirk Cousins at QB, but could he be the missing piece the Vikings have been waiting for to finally make it back to a Super Bowl for the first time since 1976?

 

6.  Aaron Rodgers' Fudge-Packing Company (8-3):  They got smoked by the 49ers, so the Packers don't quite crack the top 5 as a result.  Still, I insist that there is quite a huge talent gap between the Ravens, Seahawks and 49ers versus everyone else in the NFL, and the Packers are no exception.  Just so long as Aaron Rodgers realizes this is a team sport and it's not just him out there, and I can potentially see the Packers as a dark horse Super Bowl contender.

 

5.  Told You the NFC South Would Kill Itself (9-2):  Don't say I didn't warn you.  The only thing I didn't predict was the Saints doing so well in spite the divisional dysfunction.  They even lost quarterback Drew Brees for half the season, and somehow performed even better for it thanks to backup Teddy Bridgewater.  It's hard to peg them as Super Bowl contenders considering the large gap in talent between them and the top three teams.  But hey?  They beat the Seahawks in Seattle their first week without Brees.  So it's hypothetical that the Saints could very well clinch a first round playoff bye if both teams were to win out.  For Brees sake, I hope so, since this will be the Saints final chance at a Super Bowl before Brees inevitably retires.  The wall waits for no one.  Speaking of which....

 

Super Bowl Contenders:

 

4.  The Wall Is Coming (10-1):  That record is a lot more deceptive than it looks considering that seven of their wins came against teams that at one point in time ranked at the absolute bottom of the barrel, and only three of those wins occurred against teams that have since bounced back.  It almost disgusts me that I even decided to rank them as a Super Bowl contender still, since they got utterly destroyed by a team that actually IS a Super Bowl contender, and they've had an incredibly easy schedule with two more games against dead weight teams still to come.  All they have to do is sweep those games, and then beat up on the Texans and Chiefs, and a first round bye--if not home field advantage becomes a guarantee.  Even though their offense has been an utter shitshow once they had to face actual football teams, and their defense will have to play as close as flawless as possible just to carry their precious goat across the finish line.  They better hope to God that Andrew Luck decides to come out of retirement and test his wares at free agency, because that's the only way the Patriot dynasty is going to continue on into the 2020's--even if they win ANOTHER one this year.  So yeah; until further notice, I'm not removing this team off the Super Bowl contenders tier.

 

3.  Shit, Needles, Bums, and Plagues--OH, MY! (10-1):  It says a lot that the teams with the best records happen to be my two absolute least favorites as far as who I'd want to see win a Super Bowl is concerned, and both teams are largely in contention because they had it easy.  I'll give the 49ers this much, however; at least their offense is on fire, and they've utterly clobbered nearly every team they've played.  And their schedule is much more difficult compared to the Patriots.  Goes to show what a young and healthy roster is capable of, especially in the once-heir apparent in Jimmy Garoppolo.

 

2.  The Silverhawks (9-2):  I'll give the Seahawks this much credit; they've beaten the 49ers, and they've got one more match against them.  They can still clinch the division and a first round bye simply by winning out.  Their two losses were against similarly talented football teams in the Saints and Ravens as well.  And they've been getting it done week in and week out against everyone else.  If not for a certain number 1 team on this list, Russel Wilson would easily be an MVP candidate.

 

1.  Baltimore Ravens (9-2):  Let's be honest; aside from that two game slide against the Chiefs and Browns early on in the season, was there ever another football team that has utterly torched every single team in their path quite as dominantly as the Ravens?  The Patriots may have a gaudy Net Point line, but almost all of those points came against shitty football teams.  The difference is that the Ravens only had four games against bottom-feeder teams (Bungles twice, Cardinals, and Dolphins); and even against the best of the best like the Patriots and Seahawks, the Ravens have been torching the competition.  Texans!?  Destroyed.  Patriots!?  Destroyed!  Seahawks in Seattle?  Up two scores!  And they still have the 49ers and Bills on their schedule.  If the Ravens can somehow win out against that competition, I think it'd be safe to say that no other team in the NFL is as good as the Ravens.  Not that I think they're invincible though, since their strength is clearly on the ground rather than in the air. So a smart defense can still take this team apart and cause them to unravel.  But considering their strength of schedule compared to, say, the Patriots, it's amazing how good the top three teams are, and how good the Ravens are even compared to the rest of the top five.

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It's going to be key for the Ravens to have home field advantage in the playoffs. Adversely, the Patriots' only hope is to have home field advantage throughout the playoffs.

 

Also, there is near zero chance that L. Jackson doesn't regress next season. I'm not saying it will be as bad as C. Kap did post-Super Bowl season, but teams are going to use spy more effectively as they learn his game. He's tremendous, and I don't want to take anything away from him. But we've seen this before. The hybrid QB cannot keep up with the position like a true pocket passer QB. It's just not possible. There's limited time in practice, there are limited reps for all players, and if the Ravens are committing time to mixed packages for QB runs, option plays and the like, then he's not getting better at pure pocket positioning. I think these hybrid QBs, and Jackson might be the best of them all that we've seen so far, are not built for building dynasties around. I think they're better served for streaks, perhaps a Super Bowl victory. Long term? The math isn't there to support long term success. There is only so much time in the day.

Edited by Yak

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19 minutes ago, Yak said:

It's going to be key for the Ravens to have home field advantage in the playoffs. Adversely, the Patriots' only hope is to have home field advantage throughout the playoffs.

 

Also, there is near zero chance that L. Jackson doesn't regress next season. I'm not saying it will be as bad as C. Kap did post-Super Bowl season, but teams are going to use spy more effectively as they learn his game. He's tremendous, and I don't want to take anything away from him. But we've seen this before. The hybrid QB cannot keep up with the position like a true pocket passer QB. It's just not possible. There's limited time in practice, there are limited reps for all players, and if the Ravens are committing time to mixed packages for QB runs, option plays and the like, then he's not getting better at pure pocket positioning. I think these hybrid QBs, and Jackson might be the best of them all that we've seen so far, are not built for building dynasties around. I think they're better served for streaks, perhaps a Super Bowl victory. Long term? The math isn't there to support long term success. There is only so much time in the day.

That is absolutely true, although I'm not sure home field advantage is as advantageous as you may claim.  Note that the Baltimore Ravens have won at Foxborough during the playoffs before.  Twice no less, and one of those times was during the AFC Championship game.  Likewise,  the Patriots have gotten there before in spite having to travel to the AFC Championship game.  So there is precedent, there.  Not as strong as Patriots getting there by virtue of home field advantage, but still.

 

The problem with hybrid QB's has more to do with the fact that they regress much faster than the pocket passer simply because they get beat up more than the pocket passer.  Meaning Lamar Jackson is going to have a much shorter shelf life than a Tom Brady or a Peyton Manning--more similar to a Cam Newton now that I think about it.  But there are always exceptions, such as Russel Wilson, Steve Young, Aaron Rodgers, or Fran Tarkenton among others--who, aside from Wilson since he's only a seven-year vet, have all had fairly long careers for your typical scrambler.  But the precedent likely points to a digression for Jackson, especially once the Browns get on a roll and become red hot.

 

However, my power rankings are based on this year, not based on the next year or the year after that.  After all, we can't see the future.

 

For the record, John Elway and Brett Favre were technically scramblers as well, but their style of play focused more on gunslinging and then maybe fighting for extra yards rather than escaping the pocket when they can't find an open receiver.  Tom Brady is closer to an Elway or Favre in that regards, though without the gunslinging aspect to their play.

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That is absolutely true, although I'm not sure home field advantage is as advantageous as you may claim.  Note that the Baltimore Ravens have won at Foxborough during the playoffs before.  Twice no less, and one of those times was during the AFC Championship game.  Likewise,  the Patriots have gotten there before in spite having to travel to the AFC Championship game.  So there is precedent, there.  Not as strong as Patriots getting there by virtue of home field advantage, but still.

 

LOL to you just telling me who the Patriots have lost to in the past; I promise you that I am familiar.

 

When I brought up those scenarios, I am only taking into account the teams from this year. History means nothing to me for these scenarios, specifically. The Patriots team that lost to the Ravens in the Championship game is completely different than the 2019 Patriots. The Ravens with L. Jackson at the helm are a completely different team than the Joe Flacco era Ravens.

 

L. Jackson is going to want home field advantage, because going into Foxborough for the playoffs is going to be very hard for him to pull out with a victory. It doesn't matter to me that his regular season play has been lights out. The playoffs in Foxborough are a completely different affair, and especially for an inexperienced QB.

 

Similarly, for this 2019 Patriots team, not having home field advantage is going to be brutal for the communication between skill players on offense considering how little playoff experience parts of the offense have, especially with the WRs in play right now. The inexperience/lack of developed talent of the WR set on this current Patriots group is the glaring issue with this team. When you're praying that Phillip fucking Dorsett is healthy, you know you're in struggle city.

Edited by Yak

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Reporter asks, “5 touchdowns for you, passing. 95 rushing yards. Did it feel like you could do whatever you wanted to do?”

 

Lamar Jackson immediately deflects, “No. It’s grown men out here, and they’re trying to feed their families.” Jackson is 22 years old.

 

As a Patriots fan, I’ve always had respect for the Ravens franchise. But this single post-game quote from Lamar Jackson on Monday night seals my appreciation for the guy. I’m happy that the city of Baltimore (and the country) has a young, dynamic sports role model at the quarterback position, whose first instinct when baited by the media with self-reverence is to shut it down, honoring his peers and their humanity.

 

I’m a fan of Lamar Jackson.

Edited by Yak

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On 11/26/2019 at 3:46 PM, Yak said:

 

When you're praying that Phillip fucking Dorsett is healthy, you know you're in struggle city.


Underrated comment. 

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On 10/12/2019 at 5:37 PM, Bolt said:

my preference-picks

 

Wk13:

DET>chi, DAL>buf, NO>atl, CLE>pit, GB>nyg, PHI>mia, JAX>t.b, IND>ten, NYJ>cin, CAR>wash, BAL>s.f, ARZ>lar, DEN>lac, K.C>rai, TEX>pattycakes, SEA>min

 

By golly - one of these days I gotta see how my preference-picks have done! ...  (I think it's about 50/50.)

 

 

Anyway - Happy Thanksgiving, amigos51JIn3zkhdL._SL500_AC_SS350_.jpg

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This week’s Ravens v. 49ers game is a possible Super Bowl match-up. I’m very excited for it, because it’s an incredibly important game for the Patriots. I’m also looking forward to either of these teams taking a shot to their confidence with a loss from this game. It’s nearly a complete win/win situation! :D

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Hope everyone had themselves a happy Thanksgiving.  Now here's an early Christmas present for the Lions and Falcons:  Joining the Bungles in the elimination column.

 

Meanwhile, the Saints become the first team in the NFL to clinch a playoff berth, and by extension, a division title.

 

Fortunately for the Giants and Redskins, they get a stay of execution this week since the Cowboys lost tonight as well.  But if either of them lose or the Eagles win, then they're officially eliminated from playoff contention.

 

Additional teams facing elimination alongside the Giants and Redskins are the Dolphins, Broncos, Cardinals, and Buccaneers.

 

Now for some playoff clinching scenarios:

 

The New England Patriots can clinch a playoff berth with a win and losses from two of the following:  Titans, Colts, and Raiders.

 

The Baltimore Ravens can clinch a division title with a win plus losses from the Steelers an Browns; they can otherwise clinch a playoff berth with losses from the Colts, Titans, and Raiders.

 

The San Francisco 49ers AND Seattle Seahawks can both clinch playoff berths with wins plus a Rams loss.

 

No matter what, it's impossible for both the Ravens and 49ers to clinch a playoff berth this weekend simultaneously.

 

Finally, with their ninth win of the season, the Buffalo Bills have now officially passed the Miami Dolphins on my power rankings for the decade, standing alone at number 29.  Congratulations, Bills fans!

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All Jimmy G. has to do is not lose the game...

 

Garbage 49ers defense on a mid-field crossing route in the red zone. 

Edited by Yak

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It doesn’t make sense to me how teams have been using outside linebackers against Lamar Jackson. On the recent scoring drive that took the Ravens to 14-7, twice, outside linebackers were focused on the run while the play was clearly developing on the opposite side of the field. Ravens TE comes off the line and goes in motion across the Center, and the outside linebacker that was in coverage on that TE transitions to the line for irrelevant edge run protection. Like, play the weak side designed QB scramble! There’s a greater chance and fear of that happening than some RB cutback to the weak side, and especially when we’re talking about a downfield runner like Ingram in the backfield—dude ain’t making cutbacks in the reverse direction.

 

Believe me, I understand that I’m being a total armchair cliche right now, but so many of these irrelevant player assignments seem like they could be corrected by coaching. 

Edited by Yak

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This is an incredibly entertaining, if imperfectly played football game. Great rain game. 

 

Didn’t learn a whole bunch about these teams given the conditions of this game. 

Edited by Yak

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Okay, joining the Bungles, Falcons, and Lions in the elimination column after today are as follows:  Arizona Cardinals, Miami Dolphins (in spite the win), and the New York Giants.  Because the Redskins won while the Cowboys and Eagles lost, they are still in the hunt for the NFC East.  Everybody else still standing still has at least 4 wins under their belt (though if the Vikings win tomorrow....).

 

No one else but the Saints have clinched a playoff berth as of yet.  The Ravens would have clinched the division had the Browns beat the Steelers.  The 49ers would have clinched a playoff berth with a win and Rams loss.  The Patriots would have clinched a playoff berth with a win plus Steelers loss.  And since the Rams won, the Seahawks won't be able to clinch tomorrow night, either.

 

With that said, we are now in a three-way race for homefield advantage between the Ravens, Bills, and Patriots in the AFC.  Meanwhile, in the NFC, we are witnessing a contest between the Saints, Seahawks and 49ers for homefield advantage, although the Vikings and Packers both have the potential to play spoiler.  Unfortunately, the NFC East looks hopelessly inept as it's now a three-way race for the division crown, and the only one that wants it bad is a Redskins team that only needs a loss or a win from the Cowboys or Eagles to end their season (unless the Eagles beat the Cowboys).

 

In total, Saints aside since they clinched, I narrowed it down to 17 teams that still have a realistic shot at a playoff berth across the NFL.  Who's making the postseason, and who's staying home?

 

Honestly, here's my projection:

 

AFC:  Ravens, Bills, Patriots, Chiefs, Texans, and...I'm leaning more towards Titans

NFC:  49ers, Seahawks, Saints, Packers..., maybe Rams, and then Cowboys

 

Who do I think will win the Super Bowl?  It's going to be Baltimore vs. San Francisco, and I think the 49ers will win it.  Why?  Because the rematch will be different, and I think they'll be able to adjust their game plan with Lamar in mind.  That, and League MVP's have been cursed with not winning a Super Bowl so far this millennium.

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Ok! I'm willing to start flying the warning flag regarding the Patriots offense. Last night's game was brutal to watch as a Pats fan. I can't recall the last time I've watched Brady be so frustrated by a group of WRs. Will they finally have enough time to work together as a group and settle on an actual offensive scheme? I have no idea, but I'm not confident. The longer they take to figure out WTF they're doing, the longer other offenses can spend strengthening their Patriots-busting playbook for when they play New England. Add to New England losing their seeding last night, and I'm not psyched about how the next month looks.

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23 hours ago, Yak said:

Ok! I'm willing to start flying the warning flag regarding the Patriots offense. Last night's game was brutal to watch as a Pats fan. I can't recall the last time I've watched Brady be so frustrated by a group of WRs. Will they finally have enough time to work together as a group and settle on an actual offensive scheme? I have no idea, but I'm not confident. The longer they take to figure out WTF they're doing, the longer other offenses can spend strengthening their Patriots-busting playbook for when they play New England. Add to New England losing their seeding last night, and I'm not psyched about how the next month looks.

 

Don't the Patriots get their teeth kicked in every December, get kind of written off, and then spend the next month acting like no one ever believed in a franchise that has been the most successful over the last decade?  If Brady is healthy they'll get the passing game figured out. What about the running game though? Sony Michel hasn't been good and neither has the offensive line.

 

Seems like the Patriots will have trouble more with teams capable of overwhelming their defense so facing the Bills in the playoffs would be ideal. Seems like their best case scenario would be to hope that the Chiefs or maybe the Texans can outgun a Ravens team that hasn't scored under 20 this year. We'll see what happens this week when the Ravens bring their talents to Buffalo.

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6 hours ago, Knobbe said:

 

Don't the Patriots get their teeth kicked in every December, get kind of written off, and then spend the next month acting like no one ever believed in a franchise that has been the most successful over the last decade?  If Brady is healthy they'll get the passing game figured out. What about the running game though? Sony Michel hasn't been good and neither has the offensive line.

 

Seems like the Patriots will have trouble more with teams capable of overwhelming their defense so facing the Bills in the playoffs would be ideal. Seems like their best case scenario would be to hope that the Chiefs or maybe the Texans can outgun a Ravens team that hasn't scored under 20 this year. We'll see what happens this week when the Ravens bring their talents to Buffalo.

 

It feels different this year.  The Pats offense has struggled in almost every game this season.  They are bottom 10 in the NFL in yards per drive.  Didn't even score an offensive TD against Buffalo.  Seems like a continuation from last year's Super Bowl where the offense was awful and the defense stepped up.  Brady is showing his age, but I'd only put a little on him.  The OL has been terrible, they can't run the ball when they need to, and the WRs, with the exception of Edelman, just seem off.  The defense has been fun to watch, though.  I'm actually enjoying the swap from O to D.  It will be interesting to see how it all plays out.  They just better hope Edelman stays healthy because if he gets injured it's good night.

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