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Week 6, 2016: Gameday Thread

Last Sunday, I posted a gameday reaction thread, and we had over 50 comments. Let’s try it again this week: Write about whatever you want — emotional reactions, interesting observations, statistical questions, whatever — in the comments below. I’ll do my best to respond to each of them.

  • Adam

    Week 6 Predictions (1-0 so far!):

    Chargers 24, Broncos 21
    Bills 30, 49ers 16
    Lions 23, Rams 16
    Steelers 42, Dolphins 10
    Patriots 28, Bengals 17
    Saints 35, Panthers 34
    Ravens 20, Giants 17
    Titans 19, Browns 16
    Eagles 31, Redskins 28
    Raiders 27, Chiefs 14
    Packers 28, Cowboys 21
    Seahawks 27, Falcons 24
    Colts 28, Texans 19
    Cardinals 38, Jets 13

    Best QB: Ben Roethlisberger
    Worst QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick
    Best WR: Brandon Cooks
    Best RB: DeMarco Murray

    Most Annoying In-Game Narrative: Tom Brady Still Angry
    Most Annoying Post-Game Narrative: Cam Newton Hangs Towel Over Head, No Longer a Leader
    Most Cringeworthy Play: Alex Smith screen pass on 3rd and 15 to kill critical second half drive
    Dumbest Coaching Move: Chuck Pagano punts on 4th and 1 from the Houston 40 in a tie game

    • I have a very bad feeling about this Jets game. The Cardinals just strike me as a terrible matchup, particularly in Arizona.

      — Jets weakness is the secondary; Arizona’s strength is the team’s WRs
      — Jets linebackers can’t cover; David Johnson could torch them
      — Ryan Fitzpatrick is risk-seeking; Arizona’s secondary (and whole team) is aggressive

      I could see this game getting out of hand, to the tune of 34-10. Now the Cardinals have played poorly for long stretches this year, so that’s still on the table, too. But I just think the blowout/snowballing effect is very high for this one.

      I am most certainly planning on multitasking during SNF. Colts-Texans is pretty bad.

      • Adam

        Yeah, I could see the Jets falling behind early, then Fitzy forcing risky throws the rest of the game and Arizona feasting on his errors. Multiple INT game appears likely.

        As a Jets fan, how long would you stick with Fitzpatrick? I don’t know anything about Petty or Hackenberg, but I’m pretty sure Geno isn’t the answer.

      • Tom

        Well, thanks Chase. I was all set to take the Jets +7.5!

        • You’re welcome!

      • Tom

        So far, your assessment of this game is spot-on.

    • Tom

      How did you possibly miss on the Steelers/Dolphins game? (I am joking of course)

      Good call on the Seahawks/Falcons. I was thinking Seahawks by a TD…

  • Rushing touchdowns by both Coby Fleener and Darrius Heyward-Bey today.

  • Steelers score a TD, then go for two. Up 8-3 after Roethlisberger hits an open Bell for the conversion.

  • Brian Hoyer starts 8/8 for 66 yards against the Jaguars.

  • Brees hits Cooks for an 87-yard bomb. Panthers pass defense looking bad.

  • Carolina goes for it twice on 4th down on a big drive in the 3rd quarter. They converted both, then scored a TD, so let’s never talk about this again.

  • I know this is a forum mainly for pro football, but I randomly caught the 4th quarter of the NC St.-Clemson game yesterday, and the endgame was so mismanaged by the NC St. coach that I have to comment on it somewhere. Did anybody else see it?

    NC St got a first down with 30 seconds left on the Clemson 12 in a tie game with two timeouts. The NC St coach calls a pass on first down and the QB gets sacked and loses 4 yards. That’s a highly questionable call. NC St. had been moving the ball on the ground all day, and even if you run it twice and gain six yards you have a 24-yard field goal for the win. At least call a roll out so your QB can run or avoid the sack.

    But next came the real head-scratcher: NC St. didn’t run another offensive play! With about 25 seconds left and two timeouts they ticked down the entire clock, and set up a 33-yard field goal for a kicker who missed half his kicks last year. Naturally he missed it, and Clemson won in OT. The kicker will probably get the blame, but the coach could have tried to make things easier on him, but inexplicably didn’t. I was beside myself watching this, and I couldn’t care less about either team when I first turned it on.

    • Same. In college football, poor game management and bad kicking is to be expected.

      • Adam

        Is the game management in college even worse than it is in the NFL? That hardly seems possible.

  • The Bills are about to be the 19th team to start 0-2, then go to 4-2. Here’s how the first 18 teams did (average win% of 0.588).

    • Also, Washington has now gone from 0-2 to 4-2.

  • The 2015 Ravens were just the 6th team to have all 6 of their first 6 games decided by 6 or fewer points. The 2016 Ravens just became the 7th.

  • Adam

    Zero defense played this week. I haven’t run the numbers, but this might end up being the highest completion % and ANY/A week in league history. Also several teams with 200+ yards rushing. I miss you, Vikings 🙁

  • Five quick (kinda) thoughts on Seahawks-Falcons:

    1. I’m fine with the no-call on Sherman on the 4th-down bomb. Granted I’m a Seahawks fan, but in general on high-leverage jump balls I would *much* rather see the refs swallow their whistles than bail out the offense with a ticky-tack call. Those types of plays are very difficult to adjudicate in real time. (With that said if they called DPI, I wouldn’t have thought it unjust.)

    2. Wilson clearly is nowhere near 100%. He’s still slippery in the pocket, but he clearly can’t tuck it and go. He’s currently a below-average running QB instead of one of the greatest of all-time.

    3. Matt Ryan is *good*. But Ryan he’s pretty much always been *good*, but his team was bad, so a lot of people said he wasn’t *good*.

    4. This could be a Pyrrhic victory for the Seahawks if Michael Bennett is out for any significant period of time.

    5. Gutless call by Carroll to punt on 4th-and-inches. It “worked” and the Falcons still drove the length of the field and score.

    • Richie

      On the Sherman play, it really seems like there needs to be some less-severe penalty than a spot foul on a play like that. Even without Sherman holding Jones’ arm back, Jones was going to have a tough time making that play. But he had almost 0% chance with Sherman holding his arm.

      It shouldn’t be a spot foul, and it probably shouldn’t be an automatic first down. But it sure seems like Atlanta at least deserves another try somehow.

      • Great point. I’ve thought about this before. It seems like there should be “major” and “minor” pass interference, so that not everything has to be a spot foul. But maybe trying to differentiate between the two would cause even more problems for the refs, being that PI is probably the most difficult penalty to adjudicate as it is.

        • Richie

          Unfortunately, the NFL seems more interested in going the other way. Wasn’t there another penalty that they went the other way recently? Maybe the facemask penalty? They used to have 5 yard and 15 yard versions but now only have the 15?

          It’s funny. Especially in baseball, you hear people say they don’t want computerized ball/strike calls. They want to keep “the human element”. I think that’s such crazy logic. If there was a way for a computer to call pass interference penalties, I would be a HUGE proponent. Holding and pass interference are such grey areas, it would be nice if something faster and more impartial than the human brain could make those calls.

          • Adam

            Yeah, the human element argument in officiating is bonkers. We are already have the human element in sports…with the players on the field!

    • Tom

      Agreed 100% on the gutless Carroll call. And you’re right, it did “work” (I think Falcons started at their own 2?), but I still didn’t like the call…Wilson’s not 100%, but I feel like he could have scrambled to get that 1 yard. Also agree with you on the non-call…Falcons had 4 shots to move the ball and they couldn’t, hate to see a game changed on a single PI call.

  • Jonathan Aicardi

    All of a sudden everyone in the NFC East is .500 or better again. They’re 11-4 outside of their division. Have you guys ever done an analysis on biggest divisional swings from one year to another? Seems like the expectation from year to year is that divisional strengths move pretty gradually.

  • Tom

    4th down call that drove me nuts: Bengals, 4th and 2, on the Pats 7-yard line, down by 14. Field goal? How can Marvin Lewis not see that his team will most likely lose this game anyway, why not be “reckless”?

    (yes, I’m mad because I took Cincy +9.5 in my Pick’em contest)

  • Richie

    Update on the 2016 Football Perspective Challenge through week 6:

    If the season ended today, nobody would win. Everybody has picked at least one team that is currently out of the playoffs.

    Pct – percent of picks currently in a playoff spot.
    Pts – points earned from teams that are in playoff spots

    Since Green Bay and Philadelphia are currently tied for the final wild card spot, I am calling them both correct picks.

    • Richie

      Dangit, I wish I could this would let me post formatted columns into the comments.


      • Richie

        copy paste

      • Richie

        Number of picks:

        Ind 15
        NYG 12
        Oak 10
        Dal 7
        TB 7
        Jac 7
        SD 5
        NO 5
        Det 4
        Mia 4
        Bal 3
        Atl 3
        Chi 3
        Phi 3
        NYJ 1
        Buf 1
        Ten 1
        LA 0
        SF 0
        Cle 0