AFCS Week 10 Game Previews – stats, ref crews, injury reports, QB charts

AFCS Week 10 Game Previews

The Texans have a bye, so this week there are only two games in this AFCS Week 10 Game Previews. To say that the Jaguars must win and the Titans need to lose is an understatement. There will be no hope of winning a play off spot without wins throughout. If the Texans could stumble, that would best. Duh.

Patriots* (7-2) vs Titans (4-4) CBS

This game is in Nashville giving the Titans a slim chance because the refs should be more fair.

Referee Crew

patriots vs titans ref crew

Notable injury is to Gronk, but Sony Michel is back, so these two are washes. I’ve seen different reports on if Gronk is out, but it’s early, so will wait for an official statement. Also, no one ever believes their injury reports, so take them with a grain of salt.

An already beat-up Marcus Mariota will be down his tackle, which is where NE* will attack.

It’s tough muster up any kind of excitement for this game, I can’t stand either team and despise Brady*. How can anyone cheer for NE*? At this point, the AFC PO roads go through KC, LA (yes, said LAR because they could be the dark horse) and NE*. For Jacksonville, if  they were to win out, Titans winning just this game, wouldn’t be horrid to help knock NE* down.

KC is the team Jax would least want to face since they would have to play there in a tie. A tie vs NE* means Jax at home. Since winning the division is key, that means beating Pitt and so the same applies.

Moving on, the Titans defense has a chance because their defense (on a good day) isn’t bad and Tom Brady* beyond ten yards is looking suspect. His accuracy is very off this season; however, his receivers have been helping him out and he finds ways to pick defenses a part even though the zip isn’t there – like Peyton his ending years. His mind wins over strength.

Tennessee is 6th vs the pass, Jax gave the league the blueprint to beat them and the Titans may have the talent to do something similar in their house. They’re really good vs the rush and with Sony Michel back that may be key. Combine that with having 20 sacks and they have a chance. The way to beat Brady* is get in his face and bump him (I’d sack him, but if they touch him harder than a hip bump, they’ll get flagged).

When it comes to Mariota, his passing charts aren’t stellar, but he’s been hurt. New England is 28th vs the pass which could help him out; however, he’s got two hurt WR’s and a tackle out.

New England is 21st vs the run, but they’ve only allowed 3 TD’s and that’s big since Tennessee has five rushing TD’s and Mariota only has six passing. This offense has been one more of opportunity than a well-oiled machine.

When it comes to NE*, they’re 8th in passing and 9th in rushing. They also create turnovers, 11 interceptions, something the Titans don’t do well, they only have six.

Keys for Tennessee to get a win:

  1. hope their secondary finds a way to cover well enough giving them time to jam Brady*.
  2. they can run the ball
  3. Mariota runs

Keys for NE*

  1. contain Mariota
  2. play Patriot* football

Here’s the thing, NE* isn’t a speedy team, they beat you with their play calling. They love their 21 personnel and matching up Patterson (who is a true flex player) on the slowest linebacker. I don’t think TN is quite there, yet in speed and discipline to beat NE*.

Jaguars (3-5) vs Colts (3-5) CBS

Referee Crew

jaguars vs colts ref crew

The Jags injury report is smaller than it’s been in a while, but after a bye week, it should be. It is disconcerting that both TE’s (neither have more than a combined single game of experience) is on here. I just don’t understand their blasé attitude towards having no TE’s.

The good news is: no OL! Can they stay healthy is the biggest question because with a healthy line, we see good Bortles, without, we see the turnover machine. Combine that with two power backs and we could witness what was envisioned before the season was wrecked with injuries.

Meanwhile, the surging Colts are still dealing with injuries and a few of their players go off a week, only to pop back up the next. What’s to note is although they got Jack Doyle back, their other TE’s are out.

Ok, here’s some brass tacks: Jax run defense stinks, it’s allowing over 125 yards a game and almost a TD per outing. Their bread and butter was in the passing game with AJ Bouye. They were stingy with yards per pass and air TD’s.

These two teams on offense are polar opposites and if Bouye was playing, I’d say this could be a strong win. Also, since Indy is middle of the pack stopping run yards (but even with Jax in allowing TD’s), this would be a good match-up for a strong run first team.

However, do we know how Fournette and Hyde will do? How healthy is the OL, really? That’s what this game will come down to: can Jacksonville be the pass defending juggernaut and Fournette be at 2017 form?

If those two are yeses, then Jax could be on the receiving end of a win.

Must add this. Jalen Ramsey has to be a leader out there. If the DB’s aren’t communicating, missing assignments, he needs to channel some Ray Lewis and get in their face. Someone needs to be the leader of the secondary and it for dang sure isn’t Barry, drink until 4am, Church.

Looking at Indy, they’ve really shored up their pass defense which isn’t good news for Bortles if that OL can’t give him the time he needs. To me, I’d try to come out passing because Indy will be expecting the run.

Test them. See if they prepared for a heavy run defense and maybe Bortles can surprise them because that is going to be crucial if the Jags’ secondary isn’t dominant. Jacksonville can’t be spending seven minutes a drive for a rush TD and Luck throws a TD in two minutes.

The way to stop Indy is for the secondary to play man as often as they can buying time for the DL to sack him, hit him. They’ve got to take away the pass game to even things out.

It would seem prudent to play a safety high and stop the short pass which is where getting DJ Hayden could be a huge help (but keep reading). Luck is among the worst at air yards, Indy’s dink and dunk game is the short pass which is averaging 6.4 air yards. The guy throws 4 TD’s in a game with 156 yards.

He’s a surgeon in reading the field and knowing exactly where to go with the ball. That’s the bad news to leaving one safety, he lulls defenses into playing short and then lobs one deep.

Based on that, Jax will need to get very creative in the looks they show Luck. They’ve got to confuse him.

Even though Jax stinks at run stopping, better that than allowing him to pass. Speaking of which, clearly he’s a GOD in the RZ and that is what must be stopped, letting him get there.

I debated posting Bortles passing charts because they’re pitiful, but they include his running and that should be made a part of the game plan. RPO the snot out of them today. Oh, have to add that the receivers drop a lot and that does affect his numbers.

Keys to winning for Jags:

  1. defense: white on rice for the receivers
  2. DL needs to get in his face early and often
  3. OL needs to block, give BB confidence to throw

Keys to winning for Indy:

  1. pick on injured Telvin Smith
  2. pick on Patmon
  3. play press because Jax receivers rarely get separation

From the Jax coaches, we need to see some aggressive play calling out there. The season is on the line, go for broke.

Week 10 NFL Game Predictions – He Said/She Said

Week 10 NFL Game Predictions

Last week, we got 70% correct, as a grade, it’s poor, as a QB completion rate, that’s great. We’ll split the difference and say it was good. There are four teams this week on bye and we don’t predict Thursday games because it’s too out in front for the Sunday ones, that leaves 11 to choose. Here are our Week 10 NFL Game Predictions.

1:00 GAMES

Lions (3-5) vs Bears (5-3) FOX

Jay: Home team because Detroit can’t run the football and the Bears pass defense is too good.

Jules: Tough to pick which one, they each look good and then suck. Going Bears because their DL should make Detroit’s OL continue to suck at protecting Stafford.

Saints (7-1) vs Bengals (5-3) FOX

Jay: New Orleans for many reasons, first being that Cincy is like the walking wounded. Cinco will put up points, but NO gets the job done in the 4th quarter.

Jules: Cincy isn’t a better team, but sometimes I wonder about let down games. Logic says NO in a beat down.

Falcons (4-4) vs Browns (2-6-1)

Jay: Falcons. Next

Jules: Falcons, no way Cleveland can put up the numbers Atlanta has.

Jaguars (3-5) vs Colts (3-5) CBS

Jay: One team on the rise, one team falling down. Let’s see if there is a correction. If the Jaguars need a chip on their shoulder by being flexed, there are massive issues in the locker room. Home team in the division and quite frankly, the team that is playing better football. Colts by 3

Jules: I think the Jags may finally pull out a win 1) Fournette is back and along with Carlos Hyde a 1-2 punch at RB could help score and 2) being flexed has given the guys a chip and Fowler is gone (word was he was a disruption in the locker room)…with that said, this team feels like it gave up (to draft a QB) because it didn’t bring in a desperately needed TE.

Cardinals (2-6) vs Chiefs (8-1) CBS

Jay: Kansas City. Next

Jules: KC

Bills (2-7) vs Jets (3-6)

Jay: J-E-T-S because Washington is an injured mess.

Jules: Good grief, the NFL should just cancel this game and give them each a tie. Buffalo is starting some guy off the street and Darnold is getting pummeled, so he can’t even learn. Going Jets only because a week to learn a system isn’t a recipe for success.

Redskins (5-3) vs Buccaneers (3-5)

Jay: Bucs due to another QB, if you used four, you have none.

Jules: Washington no longer has an OL, a run game that won’t be helpful, Jay Gruden is a big step down from Andy Reid, so it’s tough to pick them even though the Bucs defense is bad and Fitz always makes a big mistake at the worst time. But no OL is the big loser.

Patriots* (7-2) vs Titans (4-4) CBS

Jay: Students meets teacher, and still has lessons to learn. Patriots, but Tennessee is going to give them a fight to get there.

Jules: NE*, one time I actually hope they win.

4:05 GAME

Chargers (6-2) vs Raiders (1-7) FOX

Jay: LA…next

Jules: LA, if the Jags flame out, I want Phil Rivers to get a ring.

4:25 GAMES

Dolphins (5-4) vs Packers (3-4-1)

Jay: Green Bay at home in a gotta have it game.

Jules: Even though GB has looked like crap, as I’ve said before, have zero faith in Asweiler being why Miami wins.

Seahawks (4-4) vs Rams (8-1) CBS

Jay: Questions abound about the wildfires in LA and with the shooting this week in Thousand Oaks, count me as a Ram fan this week. LA, we stand with you

Jules: this seems like a slam dunk like several of the games above, but the NFL has been crazy with bizarre losses. Despite that, going with LA who will be playing with extra heart this week.

Cowboys (3-5) vs Eagles (4-4)

Jay: I have more faith in Philly getting geared up to make a run at a decimated Washington team in the East. Philly

Jules: gee, another late game for the Cowboys. Hope they get the snot beat out of them again, so maybe, just maybe, the NFL will stop giving them so many prime spots. Besides that though, Wentz is a far better QB and that’s who I’m going with.

Monday 8:15 ESPN

Giants (1-7) vs 49ers (2-7)

Jay: I REALLY couldn’t care less about this game. I’m very certain there is a college basketball game that will find it’s way on to my main tv while this one chills on the side. I’ll take New York to find a way. I can’t believe I just wrote that.

Jules: This is a night game? Yuck. Going with SF because Mullens looks better than Eli.

Teams on Bye week

Ravens, Vikings, Texans, Broncos

AFCS Week 8 Game Previews – stats, referee crews, passing charts, injury reports

AFCS Week 8 Game Previews

Both the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Indianapolis Colts have bye weeks, so this preview is only the Texans and Titans. Unfortunately for the Jags, based on stats and watching the two teams, it looks like the Texans will win in this AFCS Week 8 Game Preview.

Texans (5-3) vs Broncos (3-5) CBS

Referee Crew

Texans week 9 ref crew

The Texans are still beat-up, but somehow still find ways to win. Clowney has been on a tear lately, so his injury hurts. Pun intended.

The Broncos have a couple of key injuries that Watson should be able to use and tear the Broncos up.

The Broncos operate efficiently off their run game and while Lindsey has been their bell cow, Freeman hasn’t been a schlub, but add him with a banged up Janovich and more just got dumped on Case Keenum.

That’s a bad thing if you know stats and his is ranked 29th for TD-INT ratio. The last thing Denver needs is more throwing from their $25M man. In addition, they’re down a starting and back-up CB and their starting SS.

For the Texans, their secondary is also banged up, but Keenum shouldn’t strike fear, he’s thrown an INT in every game he’s played, ranking him dead last in that dubious category.

Denver is third in rushing, Houston 5th; however, the Broncos have 9 rushing TD’s compared to the Texans’ 4. That’s the ball game right there. Keep them out of the red zone where they score and game over.

Houston is 15-7 in TD-INT, so Denver’s secondary is going to have a long day. Strangely, the Texans’ defense is the exact same. They’ve allowed 15 passing TD’s and intercepted 7.

Bottom line, this is a bad match-up for the Broncos because Houston has only allowed two rushing TD’s, the very motor Denver must have to win. In fact, their OC this week said he wants to run the ball even more.

In addition, Demaryius Thomas was recently dumped and one can imagine he’s not too happy and won’t mind pumping the Texans with everything he knows which is everything.

Sure, the Broncos know all about DT, but who are they going to put on him? He may be a little slower in his step, but he’s good route runner, he’s big and if they cover him, that’s an open guy elsewhere.

Denver is ranked 28th against the run and 16th against the pass. With their secondary gasping for breath, doubtful that number increases. This is bad news for Jaguar fans who need a Texans loss.

No comment on these passing charts because they tell the story of who’s safer with the ball and maybe a harbinger of the day to come.

Titans (3-4) vs Cowboys (3-4) Monday 8:15 ESPN

Referee Crew

The Titans look pretty healthy sad to say.

Cowboys are a little banged up, also sad to say.

This is another game the Jags need some help with a loss by the Titans. Fortunately, this one seems more doable than the Texans game. While Dallas will be short-handed, their secondary, which is second against the pass is healthy.

They’ve only allowed 8 passing TD’s. Not to be left behind, TN has only allowed 9, so the passing defenses on these two teams are evenly matched.

When it comes to stopping the run, both teams are also close – TN has allowed 3, Dallas, 4. Both teams are also behind the curve when it comes to giveaways. Each are in the negative.

Which means this game will truly come down to who turns the ball over, least.

When it comes to total offense, both teams are way down in the dregs of the awful. Both teams are 30 and 31st in passing – they like to pass to the other team. Prescott is 50-50.

Tennessee is worse, but they had Gabbert for a couple of games and a hurt Mariota.

The only difference that separates these teams is Zeke Elliot and even he isn’t burning up the charts. I like to use TD stats over yards because who cares if you can throw and run between the 30’s if when you get in the red zone, you get a FG or zip?

Some teams have a lot of empty yards, so it’s the points that’s worth looking at. The cowboys have five rushing TD’s and Tennessee has three. Kind of pitiful.

In case you were wondering, both teams have missed two field goals and made all their XP’s, so the kicking game may not be a factor.

Neither QB is tearing it up, but with the game in Dallas and Dak doing better with the ball than Mariota, the edge goes to the Cowboys.

 

 

Week 9 NFL Game predictions – He said/She said

Week 9 NFL Game predictions - He said/She said

He is still leading She and she is thinking to just pick what he does because he found a crystal ball that overrules stats. But, that logic went out the window when it got to the Miami game, which is one game of two picks they disagree on. Let the games begin in Week 9 NFL Game predictions – He said/She said

1:00 Games

Steelers (4-2-1) vs Ravens (4-4) CBS

Jay: One of my favorite games of the year. I’ll take Baltimore at home by a field goal

Jules: Pittsburgh is picking up steam while Baltimore is losing theirs. Roethlisberger is a streaky QB who can look brilliant and then throw 4 picks in a game. What a match-up to see. No clue who wins. Saying home team not that it’s mattered much this season except for NE*.

Bears (4-3) vs Bills (2-6) FOX

Jay: Depends on who the qb is for Buffalo, but I’ll take Chicago here if it’s against Peterman.

Jules: The Bills gave NE* a hell of a game, if they had a QB who’d been with the team more than a week, clearly would’ve won. The problem is, Nathan Peterman is back starting, so I say Bears even if Tribinishy is all over the place.

Buccaneers (3-4) vs Panthers (5-3) FOX

Jay: Ohh ohh its fitzmagic…..uh-uh…The Panthers by 6

Jules: Panthers. People forget that Fitzpatrick had lost his magic because teams had film on him. That happens, again. Plus, Newton should carve up that atrocious defense.

Chiefs (7-1) vs Browns (2-5-1) CBS

Jay: Chiefs. Next

Jules: Chiefs, no need to explain why.

Jets (3-5) vs Dolphins (4-4) CBS

Jay: Tossup game, but I’ll take Miami at home here

Jules: Here’s my first emotional pick. I can’t stand Asweiler, so going for the Jets to pick him apart.

Lions (3-4) vs Vikings (4-3-1) FOX

Jay: Hard to see Minnesota losing a “gotta have it” division game at home. I don’t see it happening

Jules: Can the Lions be who they almost are or will Minnesota stop the Jekyll and Hyde? Tough to pick MN losing two weeks in a row at home with the super stars of Diggs and Thielen.

Falcons (3-4) vs Redskins (5-2) FOX

Jay: This is an interesting game because it’s the high flying offense of Atlanta meeting a stingy Washington defense. Home field counts here. Redskins in another last possession type game.

Jules: Washington is the most shocking 5-2 team by far. You watch them play and think how are they winning? And you watch Atlanta and think, how are they losing? Think the skins defense wins.

Texans (5-3) vs Broncos (3-5) CBS

Jay: I don’t see the Broncos scoring. I see Houston scoring. #analysis.

Jules: I really want Denver to win because the Jags need the help. However, Keenum is ranked 29th in TD-INT, you can’t do that against a good defense, plus Demaryius Thomas was done dirty and will pump Houston with all the info.

4:05 Game

Chargers (5-2) vs Seahawks (4-3) CBS

Jay: Fun game coming here. Seahawks will run the football to death here and I think that’s enough to get the job done in a squeaker.

Jules: LA is coming off a bye which means Rivers will have all his weapons, but Seattle is playing far better than earlier in the year. This should be a good game, I’m torn who to pick. Better O or better D. LA has only allowed 3 rushing TD’s, so I pick them.

4:25 Games

Rams (8-0) vs Saints (6-1) FOX

Jay: Fun game. I think the Rams are just a touch better. I’ll take the Rams with very little confidence

Jules: Another good game. Going with LA because NO defense isn’t good vs the pass. They should do well stopping Gurley, but Cooper Kupp is back and that makes up for it.

8:20 Game

Packers (3-3-1) vs Patriots* (6-2) NBC

Jay: Patriots. I think they’re the better football team all around.

Jules: I don’t think this game will be as good as everyone is hyping. NE* looked like garbage against the Bills. Good for them GB doesn’t have a defense otherwise they’d get blown out. Only picking NE* because the home refs will most likely make a call that helps them pull out a squeaker.

Monday 8:15 ESPN

Titans (3-4) vs Cowboys (3-4)

Jay: Another garbage Monday night game. I’ll take the cowboys by 3

Jules: Yuck and double yuck. Trying to think of why to pick Dallas to win to help out the Jags. Their defense is why against a bottom ranked offense.

BYE TEAMS

Bengals, Colts, Jaguars, Cardinals, Eagles, Giants