FMQB: Elite 8, Week of Rematches
Well we got rid of all the riff-raff (well mostly, sorry Texans). Sort of a rough week of games, really none were super competitive minus the 1st half of the Giants and Packers game. All 4 home teams won, and yours truly went 3-1 in picks, with the only miss-step on thinking the Lions would actually put up a fight. The weekend can be summed up in one run-on sentence. Bill O’Brien has been to the playoffs with 3 different QB’s has still won 2 playoff games, the Lions can’t win a playoff game on the road, Matt Moore got smoked worse than the Dolphins did, and Aaron Rodgers is the deadliest weapon in the game. We should have a better slate this week at least! Every game is a rematch from earlier in the year.
Seattle at Atlanta– Rematch of earlier this season, when Seattle won 26-24 on a questionable pass interference call. This could be an interesting game, you could really see it as a Seattle rout, an Atlanta rout, or a very close game. Reminds you of the 2012 game where Russell Wilson came onto the scene, and nearly had a huge comeback win in Atlanta. Once again, depends on which Seattle team shows up. I see the score flipping, and Falcons win 26-24 (on a missed Steven Haushka game winning kick).
Houston at New England– Another rematch, earlier on was only time New England has been shut out at home. Ever! Granted they were Brady-less. Ironically this time, they have the largest spread in the divisional round at -15! It’s the playoffs, sure, but I really can’t imagine a situation where this is a good game. ONLY if the Texans defense plays lights out and sacks Brady 8 times, it would have to be similar to the Broncos game last year, which would make it something like 20-17 Texans. But my pick for this game is Patriots 38, Texans 13.
Steelers at Chiefs- Once again Sunday is the best day for football. Steelers Chiefs is going to be your old fashioned, tough defense, hard pounding, cold playoff football game! This is another rematch that I completely forgot about, it was that awful Sunday Night game where Pittsburgh was up 29-0 by halftime, 36-0 within the first drive of the 3rd quarter. I highly doubt we’ll see this sort of disparity again, in fact most people have the Chiefs winning. As do I, Chiefs 24, Steelers 22.
Packers at Cowboys– Also probably the matchup of the week. We’ll get our defensive fill in the first game, and flip to an offensive shootout for this one. It’s too bad that Jordy Nelson is out, as they’ll need every weapon they have against Dallas. I think it’s much closer than the blowout from earlier this year, but Elliot is going to run all over the Packers again. The only concern with the Cowboys is either rust, or lack of experience. Despite what I’d like, I think Dallas wins a nail-biter 37-34.
For the Record:
- I think the Steelers could have won that game with Roethlisberger, Brown, and Bell by themselves
- Aaron Rodgers’ ability to escape the rush seems to amaze me everytime, and must be so frustrating for defenses
- The Texans won with defense without JJ Watt
- Thomas Rawls made the lack of Marshawn Lynch in the playoffs nearly a moot point
- Seahawks’ unknown receiver Richardson had the catch of the season for the first TD
- LeVeon Bell is so patient, completely different than every other RB out there. You see it
Stat of the Week:
Thomas Rawls holds the record for the most rush yards in a playoff game in Seahawks history. 30 years from now, that will be a Sports Final Jeopardy question that everybody answers Marshawn Lynch or Shawn Alexander.
Stat of the Week #2:
LeVeon Bell also now holds the record for the most rush yards in a playoff game in Steelers history. Not Jerome Bettis, Franco Harris, or even Willie Parker’s Super Bowl.
Vance Joseph? Dolphins were 29th in Defense in regards to yards, 18th in regards to points, 11th in takeaways. Only 1 season at the coordinator level in the NFL, never been a head coach anywhere. Just seems like a weird pick.
Rams just hired Sean McVay, a 30 year old offensive coordinator who is now the youngest coach in NFL history. As if turning 30 wasn’t hard enough for me, it really makes you think about what you’re doing in life! On the other hand, half the players will be older than the coach. Hiring a good offensive mind was smart, let’s just see if he can control the locker room.
It’s official San Diego, to the day, you also lost a team to LA. We’ll actually see if the market can go from zero teams to 2 in one season flat. My guess is this lasts for 15 years, no longer.