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NFL 2019: Wild Card, Mitches!


Secretary of Eumenes

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Have the Pats with Belichick and Brady ever lost to San Diego? I remember them winning in some incredibly brutal ways, but I don't remember them actually losing. 

As far as I can tell, they lost last time when using Matt Cassel. In 2008. 

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Harsh stat on Jackson: He did not complete a pass for literally two hours during the game.

1 hour ago, Prince of the North said:

Yep.  The Chargers substituting safeties for LBs to get more speed to neutralize Jackson's running appears to have helped.  As you say, the Chargers learned their lesson and adjusted.  

They've also come out and said they changed their typical stances to get better angles on him. 

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32 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

Have the Pats with Belichick and Brady ever lost to San Diego? I remember them winning in some incredibly brutal ways, but I don't remember them actually losing. 

As far as I can tell, they lost last time when using Matt Cassel. In 2008. 

I think the stat I saw was that Rivers is 0-7 verses Brady. 

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37 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

Have the Pats with Belichick and Brady ever lost to San Diego? I remember them winning in some incredibly brutal ways, but I don't remember them actually losing. 

As far as I can tell, they lost last time when using Matt Cassel. In 2008. 

Forecast for 3 to 5 inches for the game I saw.

The greatest best chance the Chargers ever had to win against the Pats (not counting Cassel) was when Marlon McCree picked off Brady, thereby winning the game, but attempted to return the damn thing and fumbled.

And the next year was when Lawrence Maroney and Brady went on like an 8 minute drive to strangle the game away when Rivers was playing with a torn ACL suffered at Indianapolis the previous week.

Divisional Round in the 2006 postseason.

3 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Triple Post Time!!!

I'm gonna go out and say it, the Colts will beat the Chiefs!!! 

I said a week ago that the Colts are the most dangerous team to the Chiefs because they can play reasonable defense and great offense.

That being said, I feel like I'm in an emotional riptide because I don't want to get bent out of shape about the offensive 2nd half performance (sometimes it really IS ok to go conservative, and that was one of them), but I also feel like people are just taking for granted that the Colts could have kept scoring at will.

But, however, though. The Chiefs defense is garbage. They had better raw sack numbers than the Texans because teams had to pass on them all the time, but I do not fear Justin Houston and Dee Ford. The Colts have the ponies to score on literally every drive, but Luck is a high variable passer and while his return to health has closed the gap considerably I would certainly prefer Russel Wilson in this game because he avoids the turnover which is the only thing I see giving the KC Defense consistent stops.

Meanwhile Mahomes is a god made flesh to fully expose our sins. He will devour that zone (Malik Hooker is spelled 'BUST'), and there is simply no way to play a functional man scheme against all those receivers and a QB who can throw the ball across his body without looking. Not with the Colts' personnel. 

So it'll come down to turnovers for the Colts. Darius Leonard has to tip a pass out of Kelce's hands into the middle of the field. That HAS to happen or the Chiefs will just inexorably roll down the field.

The good news is that if the Colts beat the Chiefs then they would actually deserve to be favored against the Patriots for the first time in 56 years. The bad news is that then you have to play the Patriots.

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3 hours ago, Cas Stark said:

If the Chargers beat the Pats, then have we reached the beginning of the middle of the end?  I think we're already at the beginning of the end.....

It could just be reversion to the mean. Unlike most (or, as far as I can tell, any) teams in the NFL, the seasons of the Patriots since Brady first became a starter can be divided into rather straightforward sets with the midpoint being the AFC Championship:

  • Excellent: win the Superb Owl (5)
  • Above average: win the AFCC, but lose the Superb Owl (3)
  • Below average: make the AFFC, but lose it (4)
  • Bad: fail to make the AFCC (5)

The last season was above average, the one before that was excellent and they haven't had a bad one since all the way back in 2010. I'd say they're due to miss the AFCC simply based on their prior behavior.

All of that said, FiveThirtyEight gives them a 58% chance of beating the Chargers which, while the worst odds for any of the home teams, is still nearly 3 to 2. Vegas also seems to be in their favor so I wouldn't count them out yet.

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2 hours ago, Jace, Basilissa said:

Packers have hired 39 year old Matt LeFleur. Well known for holding Jared Goff's helmet in 2017 and coordinating the devastating 2018 Titans offense.

It's hard to get a read on that Titans offense because I'm pretty sure a big part of the problem the past two years is that Mariota has just sucked.  I'm also not sure a week went by this season where Mariota started and I didn't get a push update at some point during the game saying he was questionable to return with one of about forty different injuries. 

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32 minutes ago, l2 0 5 5 said:

Also, when is the last time the Titans had any big receiver threat? Derrick Mason? Huuuh??  All I remember from them is a bunch of guys who were supposed to be the guy and never lived up to hype.

I mean, they just took Corey Davis in the top ten a year ago, and I don't think he has been the problem there.  He's looked good, and had some really great games.  But Mariota has been really inconsistent and constantly hurt.

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14 hours ago, Jace, Basilissa said:

snip

You make some solid points. There’s two things I’d like to add. First, the Colts are going to run all over the Chiefs. The Texans had the top DVOA run defense, and yet the Colts still hung 200 yards on them. The Chiefs, OTOH, have the worst DVOA run defense. I expect the colts to smash them and control the clock. They’ll play keep away as long as it’s tied or they have the lead. Second, Mahomes, while godlike, can sometimes get overhyped for big games. At times he’ll be too much of a gunslinger and shoot himself in the foot. I never trust young QBs in their first playoff game, and I expect he’ll have a couple of turnovers. We’ll have to wait and see what happens, but I’ve got the Colts 27-24 in this game.

14 hours ago, Jace, Basilissa said:

Packers have hired 39 year old Matt LeFleur. Well known for holding Jared Goff's helmet in 2017 and coordinating the devastating 2018 Titans offense.

This is only the second time I’ve heard this guy’s name. The other is when one of my favorite analysts described him as being “one of the hottest young OCs, but he was trash this year.”

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26 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

This is only the second time I’ve heard this guy’s name. The other is when one of my favorite analysts described him as being “one of the hottest young OCs, but he was trash this year.”

Last year the Titans offense was a bit of a punchline with their "exotic smashmouth" which mostly just meant running the ball too much and scoring very few points.

This year their offense looked a little better, but that was more regression to the mean rather than any significant improvement.  They look to be below average on talent, and according to FO, they are 16th in the league on offense.  So if you're being charitable you could say that LeFleur overachieved slightly?  But "he can make a below average unit play average football" is hardly the sign of an offensive genius, it's more just "let's not fire our O coordinator yet."

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33 minutes ago, Maithanet said:

Last year the Titans offense was a bit of a punchline with their "exotic smashmouth" which mostly just meant running the ball too much and scoring very few points.

This year their offense looked a little better, but that was more regression to the mean rather than any significant improvement.  They look to be below average on talent, and according to FO, they are 16th in the league on offense.  So if you're being charitable you could say that LeFleur overachieved slightly?  But "he can make a below average unit play average football" is hardly the sign of an offensive genius, it's more just "let's not fire our O coordinator yet."

I'm seeing 22nd and even that seems high. Where do you see 16th? Also 27th in points and 25th in yards. But congrats to LaFleur for discovering Derrick Henry was on his roster in week 14.

Still a more impressive hire than the last guy the Packers pegged - Mike McCarthy the OC of the 1-15 2005 49ers.

ETA: Also Maith, you'll be happy to hear he's now the 3rd assistant on the 2013 Redskins who is now a HC in this league (along with Shanahan and McVay). 

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7 minutes ago, Jaime L said:

I'm seeing 22nd and even that seems high. Where do you see 16th? Also 27th in points and 25th in yards. But congrats to LaFleur for discovering Derrick Henry was on his roster in week 14.

Here's the week 18 DVOA rankings, where I'm seeing Tennessee as 16th on offense (1.4% above average). 

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