Gopher

Bold Predictions - Divisional Weekend

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I heard a stat about last weekend's games that got me thinking.... What is going to happen this coming weekend that we all won't expect?  

 

Here is the stat from last weekend.....Four games.  Eight teams.  There was exactly ONE receiving touchdown by a wide receiver last week.  Two quarterbacks caught touchdown passes.  A WR ran for a score.  Another WR threw for a score.  A backup TE caught a TD.  Even a DB caught a TD pass (well, an INT TD, actually).  But, in over 500 offensive plays snapped, there was only one touchdown pass to a wideout.  Crazy.  

 

Honorable mention:  TEN beat NE, on the road, with 76 total passing yards in the game.  That, in itself, is pretty hard to believe.  Even more crazy.... They completed a total of nine passes in the game, and only TWO passes to WR's.  Five of the nine completions went to a pair of backup TE's (Firkser and Pruitt).  

 

What's going to happen this week?  I have a couple of thoughts.  My first is that one of the 6-seeds is going to advance to the conference finals.  Not sure yet which one.  Secondly, I could easily see a scenario where all four road teams cover.  TEN and HOU are 9-ish point underdogs, MIN about a 7-pt dog, and SEA is getting about 4.  I could see all of them covering, and 1-2 winning outright.  But, I'm going to give it a bit more thought before I narrow it down and declare my official "bold prediction" of the week.  

 

What do you all have for bold predictions of the week?  :)

 

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I can see Seattle beating Green Bay for sure.  Not that bold of a prediction, actually.

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2 minutes ago, darin3 said:

I can see Seattle beating Green Bay for sure.  Not that bold of a prediction, actually.

 

Isn't the Pack strong against the pass and the Hawks weak against the run?  Not seeing this one. 

 

The only possible upset I see is Minny, otherwise I'll boldly state it looks kinda boring out there.  Baltimore and Pack comfortably, KC in a high scoring affair. 

 

I honestly don't want to see Minny advance to play GB, can't take another game of the Vikings laying down to the Pack this year.  That Monday night game destroyed me in 3 championships bouts. 

 

:2cents:

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Def. said:

 

Isn't the Pack strong against the pass and the Hawks weak against the run?  Not seeing this one. 

 

 

It's the playoffs, things change.  Coaching really comes into play.  We have Carroll with a ton of playoff experience vs. LaFleur with none.  

 

On paper GB has pretty much all the advantages, perhaps maybe even at QB, but this is where the intangibles come into play.

 

I'm not sure GB is as good as their record indicates.


E2A:

 

GB is indeed good against the pass, but this is Russell Wilson we're talking about.  He always figures out a way.

 

Seattle is middling against the run, but again... Pete Carroll.  

 

I can see this being a higher-scoring game.  Coming down to a FG.  30-27 Seattle is my call.

Edited by darin3

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History is in favor of the teams with the bye last week.  That's a big advantage.  That said, you can make an argument for all of the road teams.  Nobody has more momentum than TEN.  And, I think their style matches up well with BAL.  Beat them at their own game (running the ball), try to control time of possession, and keep the ball out of BAL's hands.  Not saying it's going to happen, but it would actually surprise me less than HOU beating KC.  That said, HOU did already beat KC once this year, so I'm not going to say that's impossible.  

 

For MIN, I'm obviously a big homer, and I'm always cautiously optomistic in games like this.  It's hard not to think about the letdown from two years ago, after the win against NO.  But, I think the team, and certainly Zimmer, remember that.  If they get beat, it will be because SF is the better team, not because they were caught off-guard or unprepared.  On the other hand, f the overall team effort is similar to last week, they have a good chance.  The thing that probably concerns me the most is the SF D-Line.  Cousins struggles when under constant pressure.  That doesn't mean that the Vikes have no chance.  But they will have to find ways to get him moving, get the ball out of his hands quickly, and keep the defense guessing.  A predictable or vanilla offensive game-plan will not work against the Niners, IMO.

 

Seattle has been a surprise this year.  I'm not sure many expected them to be in contention for the #1 seed in the NFC, but they were.  Right down to the final week of the season.  They won a bunch of very close games this year.  They also seemed to improve dramatically on defense when they added Clowney.  Most importantly, they have Russell Wilson, who seemingly keeps them in every game they play.  Green Bay sort of slipped into the 2-spot by default.  They kept winning when others (NO in particular) dropped games unexpectedly.  Personally, I agree with Darin.... I don't think the Packers are as good as their record indicates.  But, Aaron Rodgers is Aaron Rodgers... He's going to show up, and likely play very well.  I think it comes down to which team turns the ball over, or maybe even which kicker misses a FG.  

 

 

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1 hour ago, darin3 said:

 

It's the playoffs, things change.  Coaching really comes into play.  We have Carroll with a ton of playoff experience vs. LaFleur with none.  

 

On paper GB has pretty much all the advantages, perhaps maybe even at QB, but this is where the intangibles come into play.

 

I'm not sure GB is as good as their record indicates.


E2A:

 

GB is indeed good against the pass, but this is Russell Wilson we're talking about.  He always figures out a way.

 

Seattle is middling against the run, but again... Pete Carroll.  

 

I can see this being a higher-scoring game.  Coming down to a FG.  30-27 Seattle is my call.

 

:unsure: Carroll has quite the track record of losing in the divisional round (2-5).  Guess we'll see. 

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2 hours ago, darin3 said:

 

It's the playoffs, things change.  Coaching really comes into play.  We have Carroll with a ton of playoff experience vs. LaFleur with none.  

 

On paper GB has pretty much all the advantages, perhaps maybe even at QB, but this is where the intangibles come into play.

 

I'm not sure GB is as good as their record indicates.


E2A:

 

GB is indeed good against the pass, but this is Russell Wilson we're talking about.  He always figures out a way.

 

Seattle is middling against the run, but again... Pete Carroll.  

 

I can see this being a higher-scoring game.  Coming down to a FG.  30-27 Seattle is my call.

Exactly.  GB had a gravy schedule. .Especially down the stretch.

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I see a bunch of close games but think only Seattle will pull out a victory.

As a 49er fan, I don't want to get Seattle a 3rd time. 

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OK.  My prediction:

 Lynch 70 yds. and a td. 

Jones 120 yds and 2 tds.

Wilson 50 yds. rush 1 rush td.  210 pass.  2 passing tds.

Rodgers 260 pass. 1 td.

Seattle 31 Packers 24

 

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Posted (edited)
On 1/9/2020 at 12:49 PM, Gopher said:

 

 

For MIN, I'm obviously a big homer, and I'm always cautiously optomistic in games like this.  It's hard not to think about the letdown from two years ago, after the win against NO.  But, I think the team, and certainly Zimmer, remember that.  If they get beat, it will be because SF is the better team, not because they were caught off-guard or unprepared.  On the other hand, f the overall team effort is similar to last week, they have a good chance.  The thing that probably concerns me the most is the SF D-Line.  Cousins struggles when under constant pressure.  That doesn't mean that the Vikes have no chance.  But they will have to find ways to get him moving, get the ball out of his hands quickly, and keep the defense guessing.  A predictable or vanilla offensive game-plan will not work against the Niners, IMO.

 

 

 

 

 

SF defense is much better vs non-running qb's.  They are about to get 3 major players back (ford, alexander and tartt).  their sack ratio doubles with ford in the lineup.  min has a lot of talent at the skill positions, but I do not know how much time cousins is going to get.... not sure he will get as many long attempts, or if those big strikes will develop.  I think the key is cook. He is going to need to have a big day imo. under 70 yds and I think they are in trouble.  he had 80 at halftime vs NOS, but only about 14 in the second half and the saints climbed back in.

Edited by Bier Meister
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2 hours ago, Def. said:

 

:unsure: Carroll has quite the track record of losing in the divisional round (2-5).  Guess we'll see. 

 

Interesting stat, but shows that he's at least been there 7 times.  I'm wondering how many of those 5 losses they were just outplayed, not outcoached.  Obviously not running Marshawn Lynch was a huge gaffe in the Super Bowl, and I'm not even close to being a Pete Carroll fan but something tells me he is going to be well-prepared for this game and it will be close.  Perhaps coming down to a last-minute FG.

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Posted (edited)

So Carroll is 2-5 in divisional rounds including his days as the Jets coach?  To me the 9-5 record he has in the playoffs with Wilson at QB seems more indicative of historical playoff trends relating to this weekends game. 

Edited by Bobby Brown

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31 minutes ago, Bobby Brown said:

So Carroll is 2-5 in divisional rounds including his days as the Jets coach?  To me the 9-5 record he has in the playoffs with Wilson at QB seems more indicative of historical playoff trends relating to this weekends game. 

Take the points and even play the money line.  Packers are a shell of the their past.

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1 hour ago, Bier Meister said:

 

SF defense is much better vs non-running qb's.  They are about to get 3 major players back (ford, alexander and tartt).  their sack ration doubles with ford in the lineup.  min has a lot of talent at the skill positions, but I do not know how much time cousins is going to get.... not sure he will get as many long attempts, or if those big strikes will develop.  I think the key is cook. He is going to need to have a big day imo. under 70 yds and I think they are in trouble.  he had 80 at halftime vs NOS, but only about 14 in the second half and the saints climbed back in.

I don't disagree with any of that.  I'm going to hope/pray that those three come back at less than 100%.  :lol:  

 

I think Cook will have to have a big day, for sure.  I'm just not sure how much of it will come in the form of rushing.  MIN's best chance at slowing down the pass rush might be by using a heavy dose of screen passes.  That said, the thought of Cousins operating under duress makes me uncomfortable at best.  

 

All of THAT said, I was saying back in Week 16 that, if there was one team I'd rather not play on the road in the playoffs, it would be the Saints.  The Vikings held up to that test, but it took a very solid effort all the way around.  I do think their defense can have another big day against SF.  I just hope the offense does enough to keep them in the game.  And, the margin for error is probably thin enough that they can't afford ANY big mistakes.  A pick-six, turnover deep in their own territory, or any costly special teams errors will almost certainly be too costly to overcome.  

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1 hour ago, Bobby Brown said:

So Carroll is 2-5 in divisional rounds including his days as the Jets coach?  To me the 9-5 record he has in the playoffs with Wilson at QB seems more indicative of historical playoff trends relating to this weekends game. 

I would say it's probably somewhere in between.  The first record (2-5), as you indicated, includes games with another team.  And, the second record includes mostly games in which he had a much stronger overall defense than they have now.  

 

Regardless, the Seahawks are certainly capable of winning this game.  We could very easily be talking about them hosting an NFC championship game this year, if not for a barrage of injuries to end the season.  And, Green Bay has proven that they can not show up at times.  Case in point, blowouts to PHI (at home) and the Chargers.  

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6 hours ago, darin3 said:

I can see Seattle beating Green Bay for sure.  Not that bold of a prediction, actually.

 

Really? I think the opposite. Seattle seems very average to me right now. I think the Packers smoke them. 

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Just now, League_Champion said:

 

Really? I think the opposite. Seattle seems very average to me right now. I think the Packers smoke them. 

Side bet? lol

Packers may win of course but it will be down to the wire if they do.  Rodgers looks old.  Only trusts Adams to throw to.....I'm putting a pile on Seattle straight up.

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8 minutes ago, SNOWBOUND33 said:

Side bet? lol

Packers may win of course but it will be down to the wire if they do.  Rodgers looks old.  Only trusts Adams to throw to.....I'm putting a pile on Seattle straight up.

 

Seattle barely beat a severely crippled Eagles team last week and looked terrible doing it. 

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2 hours ago, Bobby Brown said:

So Carroll is 2-5 in divisional rounds including his days as the Jets coach?  To me the 9-5 record he has in the playoffs with Wilson at QB seems more indicative of historical playoff trends relating to this weekends game. 

 

Well his "trend" in the playoffs then is more 1-1 then .643 winning percentage. 

 

2010: 1-1

2012: 1-1

2013: 3-0

2014: 2-1

2015: 1-1

2016: 1-1

2018: 0-1

 

Made the bowl twice with Russell on a cheap contract, a fantastic D, and Lynch at the end of his prime.  But that was 6 years ago, Carroll does not have that team anymore.  Can they win, sure why not, any given Sunday and all.   Just don't agree that it'll happen because Carroll's coaching is some hugh advantage.  :shrug:

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FWIW, I'm not necessarily big on either of the Carroll records being much of an indicator.  Seattle is dinged and Green Bay piled up late season wins on bad teams after losing to San Fran by nearly 30.  Neither team has great point differential or other secondary metrics that expire great confidence.  My guess is the game comes down to the end and is won by under one score; similar to how almost every game Seattle has played.  

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58 minutes ago, League_Champion said:

 

Seattle barely beat a severely crippled Eagles team last week and looked terrible doing it. 

Their running game was terrible.  Wilson throwing for over 300 wasn't terrible.  5 sacks and holding Eagles to 9 wasn't terrible, even with McNown as QB.

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9 hours ago, Bobby Brown said:

Their running game was terrible.  Wilson throwing for over 300 wasn't terrible.  5 sacks and holding Eagles to 9 wasn't terrible, even with McNown as QB.

 

McNown is NOT A-Rod. You could of had 5 sacks in that game. Philly was horrendous. I was not impressed with Seattle even a little. 

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3 hours ago, League_Champion said:

 

McNown is NOT A-Rod. You could of had 5 sacks in that game. Philly was horrendous. I was not impressed with Seattle even a little. 

THEY SHOULD HAVE HAD 20 SACKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Houston is the only underdog that wins this weekend.  My prediction.

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McCown played trough a hamstring tear and is 40.  I wouldn't expect much from the one time Bears back up.  But if it were actually Cade McNown,  that would have been interesting as he was probably the worst Bears QB ever.

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