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Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

We start out this week with the Falcons going to Carolina to get beaten by the Panthers. Yes, despite getting Dan Quinn fired, the Falcons are still playing poorly enough to lose to the Panthers who have turned things around quickly. I'm taking the Panthers. (Note to NFL schedule-makers: You've got the Ravens/Steelers playing this week and you make that a 1:00 PM Sunday game instead of a primetime game like oh, for example, a Thursday night game? Instead, we get the Falcons and Panthers?)

 

And speaking of the Steelers/Ravens that's the next game up. This is one of those games that neither training staff looks forward to. They'll be dealing with lots more injuries than normal as both teams will be looking to kill the other. These games tend to deteriorate into a streetfight more than a strategic football game. Suffice to say both teams will be ready to play this week. The Steelers lead by a game over the Ravens and will want to stretch that lead. The Ravens will want to erase it. Both defenses are playing well as are both offenses. (Steelers 183 points scored 113 points given up, Ravens 179 points scored 104 given up.) Who will win? Toss a coin. Mine came up heads for the Ravens.

 

The Rams take on the Dolphins. This is a tougher game to pick than you'd think. Tua Tagavailoa will be making his Dolphin's debut. (Sure, pick a nice easy defensive front for the kid to face in his debut like Aaron Donald.) The Rams are coming east for an early game, seldom a good thing for a west coast team. They'll want to give Tua a lesson in how tough the NFL is. But how prepared are they to face Tua since they have nearly no film on him in the Dolphin's offense? It's kind of interesting that the only voice of dissent we've heard from the Dolphins about the QB change was Ryan Fitzpatrick. The rest of the team seems to be behind the kid. I'm going with my gut here and picking the Dolphins. The Rams are the better team, but the best team doesn't always win.

 

Kansas City gets a rare home bye this week as the hapless NY Rejects, er Jets come to KC. The Jets have managed to look so bad that Trevor Lawrence is now reconsidering leaving college and entering the pros in 2021 if the Jets are his likely destination. It's not like the Jets are a bad place for a QB. They had Joe Namath and, um, uh, well they had Joe Namath. Yeah. Trevor is thinking it's better to take his chances and stay in college an extra year rather than end up in the QB killing city of NY on a field that's not ideal. Sam Darnold is still up for sale if anyone is interested in putting in a bid. I'll take KC in a romp, though if there's ever a game where overconfidence could bite you, playing the Jets is that game. KC should win in their sleep though.

 

Minnesota goes to Green Bay in a game that looked a whole lot better before the season started. The Vikings have managed to implode on nearly every level as they've gotten all of one win so far this season. Their defense has been porous and their offense inept. Other than that though they've been fine. Green Bay meanwhile is thriving in the post-Mike McCarthy era. I'll take Green Bay in this one.

 

Indy goes to Detroit. Detroit seems to have given up on playing to get Matt Patricia fired and have won two games in a row. Detroit has managed to play themselves out of top-five pick consideration and are on the verge of playing themselves out of top-ten pick consideration. Indy is still hoping Philip Rivers' arm doesn't completely fall off. That Colts defense is playing very well. I'm taking the Colts in this one.

 

The Raiders go to the Browns. A tricky game to pick with few treats. (I just remembered this is Halloween week so I had to sneak something in.) My gut says the Raiders will win, but I have no idea why. I'll take the Raiders and see if my gut is right.

 

Tennessee goes to Cincy. At some point this year the Bengals will find a way to close out a win. Joe Burrow, their kid QB, has them in every game right up to the end, then they have the big mistake and lose (or tie). The Titans are playing good football right now. I'll take the Titans but an upset here wouldn't shock me. The Bengals are so close to winning games with Burrow that at some point they'll turn that corner and roll off multiple wins in a row. Probably not this week though, so I'll take the Titans.

 

New England goes to Buffalo in a desperate attempt to save the season for the Patriots who are now 2-4 on the year, and somehow a game behind the Dolphins in third place. The big debate over whether Brady made Belichick look better or if Belichick made Brady look better seems to be leaning rather heavily in favor of Brady made Belichick look better. The good news for the Patriots is their defense is pretty stingy. The bad news is their offense can't score. I'm taking the Bills in this one. I think the Patriots are finding out how good Tom Brady truly was.

 

The equally inept Chargers and Broncos play one another in a game that no one really cares all that much about. The good news for Chargers fans (both of them) is that they've found a good QB in Justin Herbert. The Broncos, well there's not a lot of good news for them. Both teams are 2-4 and largely going nowhere this year. I'll take the Chargers in this one.

 

San Francisco takes on Seattle in what should have been a pretty good game before the Niners ended up killing off half their team. They aren't the most injured team in the league, but they're up there. The Seahawks are not nearly as injured. I'll take the Seahawks, but the Niners really, really need to win.

 

The Saints take on the Bears. Hmm...does anyone know which version of Nick Foles will show up for this game? The good Nick can go toe-to-toe with any QB in the league. The bad one, well, not so much. Being in Chicago helps the Bears as their field tends to be a bit less than ideal as the season goes on. The Saints are more of a speed and finesse team and need a good field. I'll go with the Saints here but the Bears winning wouldn't shock me. The Bears getting blown out if Nick has a bad game wouldn't shock me either. Nick is so hot and cold that every team ends up moving on from him. You just never know what you'll get. Brees is more of a proven commodity. I'll take the Saints.

 

The Cowboys come to Philly to take on what's left of the Eagles. The good news for the Eagles is the injury situation is improving each week. We only lost four guys last week! Whoo-hoo! We may even have slightly more than two offensive starters playing in this game. It's largely been Wentz and Jason Kelce playing for the Eagles with an assortment of former practice squad guys filling in around them as the second and third-string guys were also decimated. Still, the Eagles have held together as a team and played as well as could be expected. The same can't be said of the Cowboys. While they're now dealing with significant injuries they've largely forgotten how to play defense this year giving up boatloads of points each week. Andy Dalton survived being nearly decapitated last week but emerged concussed. I suspect he won't play this week. (Not if he sees film of the Eagles defensive line abusing good offensive lines and then he looks at who's playing offensive line for the Cowboys now. It's probably smarter for him to say he's dizzy and sit out the week.) With Ben "They're going to kill me" DiNucci as the likely starter, the Cowboys offense may be a bit limited in scoring potential. The Cowboys fire sale of players has started also which generally doesn't help team morale. I'm going to assume the Eagles remember how to play on offense and put up a lot of points on this Cowboys defense and win big. (Please don't let me down this week guys.)

 

And our final game its week has Tampa Bay going to Tear Up Your Knee Field in NJ to take on the Giants. This one could get ugly. Tampa is playing very well. The Giants, well they're trying to prove they're not as bad as the Jets. I think Tampa Bay fans can safely go to bed Early on Monday night assured of the win. I'll take Tampa.

Fly!!! Eagles!!! Fly!!!
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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

Everson Griffen won't be playing Sunday because he has to go through COVID protocol first. One less thing the Colts have to worry about. 

 

A co-worker of mine, who is a Bears fan, told me that Nick Foles and the coach aren't getting along;  Foles is criticizing Nagy's play calling. I don't know if this is about the Rams game or just general coaching, but it sounds like things aren't going well in Chicago right now. 

 

The upset of the year would be the Jets beating Kansas City. If someone wanted to risk it all, they could make a lot of  money with this happening. 

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

@teganslaw 

 

There's some weird stuff going on in Chicago. I watched the Bears/Rams game and Nick was in hurry-up mode on one series and got to the line and called out the play and with lots of time left on the play clock, Nagy called a timeout. Nick looked very confused (I was too.) It made no sense. You've got to trust your QB in that situation. Nick's been around a long time. He's not going to do something too stupid. There was plenty of time on the clock. All calling timeout there did was let the Rams catch their breath.

 

Nick did tell the TV crew a week or so ago that there just isn't enough time in the pocket for the five and seven-step drops and he'll know they're doomed from the start as the o-line can't hold up. That's more of an indictment of the line than Nagy though. Nick says he'll know when he hears the call that those plays are doomed. He still tries to execute them, but he knows they won't work. 

 

Nagy calling timeout while the Bears were in a hurry-up mode and in rhythm just made no sense last week. I don't know what the heck Nagy was thinking or even if he was thinking. Nick seemed confused by it as did the rest of the offense who all looked around in confusion as to why the whistle was blowing. You don't want to waste a timeout but Nagy pretty much just threw one away there.

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

[ Edited ]

@gardenman @teganslaw 

 

So what's up with this "fire sale" with Cowboy players????

 

 Yesterday the Cowboys traded defensive end Everson Griffen to the Lions, and today Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports that the Cowboys have informed defensive tackle Dontari Poe and cornerback Daryl Worley they’ll be released if they can’t be traded today.

 

Dallas’s defense has been a disaster this season, with many calls for coordinator Mike Nolan to lose his job. But these moves suggest that the Cowboys think the problem is the players not executing, rather than the game plan.

 

Poe has played 53 percent of the Cowboys’ defensive snaps this season, the most of any defensive tackle on the team. Worley has played 52 percent of the Cowboys’ defensive snaps, third-most of any cornerback on the team.

 

Although the Dallas metroplex is a long way from the Texas "coast" (i.e. Gulf of Mexico)....something fishy is going on behind the scenes...Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmm.....Were these the players that spoke out anonymously against the coaches and the Cowboys found out who they were?????

 

I dont particularly care for big mouth Stephen A. Smith of ESPN....but I think he was right that the Cowboy players just don't want to play for McCarthy....And why would McCarthy bring in a DC tht has been a disaster and out of a job for the last 6 yrs in the NFL......The only coaching hire worse than this was the Redskins hiring of Steve Spurrier as HC....Steve spent more time on the golf course than the did at Redskin Park.....

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

@SPURT 

 

Yeah, you kind of get the impression the Cowboys are rolling over and playing dead. Elliott only had twelve carries last week. You're playing a must-win game with a backup QB, and your defense can't stop the opponent, so you should want to run the ball, a lot, to keep the ball away from the opponent. You've got an alpha back in Elliott and you only give him the ball twelve times? Three carries a quarter? Something's up. 

 

The Cowboys big issue on defense is the system. Read and react makes a defense slow. You want to attack on defense. Let the offense read and react to you instead of the other way around. When your defense is designed to make all eleven guys stop, look, figure out what the offense is doing and then act cohesively to stop them, you're going to have problems. The long touchdown pass to McLaurin where Diggs was caught looking into the backfield is a perfect example. Diggs was still in read mode and not reacting as McLaurin sped past. By the time he figured out what was happening, McLaurin was gone.

 

I don't know what Diggs' key was on that play (probably the back, but maybe an o-lineman), but whatever it was took too long to develop and by the time he figured out what to do, it was too late.

 

Offensive coordinators love playing against a read and react defense. Figure out what the defender's keys are, and then fool them. That's what happened with Diggs. The WFT showed him a look where he thought McLaurin was more likely to block him, so he was waiting to move forward and avoid McLaurin's block and make the tackle, and instead, McLaurin just ran past him for the long TD. Diggs was trying to read and react, but the read took too long and by the time he reacted, McLaurin was gone.

 

Diggs likely had multiple responsibilities on that play. Cover McLaurin man-to-man if it's a pass. Cover the back out of the backfield if it's a screen. Maybe check for a guy in motion to get the ball. Whatever his responsibilities were, the WFT fooled him long enough for McLaurin to eat up the gap between them and blow past him.

 

I haven't seen the tape of that play yet, but my best guess is the WFT pulled a guard or tackle to make it look like a screen was coming towards Diggs and he read the screen, froze for a blink, then realized the guard or tackle had stopped and was now pass blocking and saw McLaurin race by him. This is the weakness of a read and react defense. This is why most teams don't play a read and react defense.

 

It's far easier to fool a read and react defense than an attacking defense. The attacking defense doesn't care what kind of games you're playing. They're charging ahead full speed. It's the offense's job to stop them, not the other way around.

 

Cutting/trading three starters can send a message to a team that no one's safe, but not those three starters. Want to really get the team's attention, cut a Demarcus Lawrence, Ezekiel Elliott, or a valued veteran whose not performing well. Those three guys they're flushing are more rental players for the year and not fixtures. The fixtures on the team won't really care that they're gone. "Yeah, whatever. It's not like I knew the guy anyway." Cut a featured, fixture player though, and you get their attention. then it's "Uh, wait, what just happened? Oh ******! If he's not safe then neither am I!" (Realistically, the Cowboys have so overpaid their fixture guys that they can't afford the dead money hit to cut one of them. Such is life in Cowboy land.)

 

Sunday night's game should be an interesting one. Will the Cowboys rally? Probably not. If I was them, I'd run the ball at the Eagles nonstop. Even the most naive kid o-lineman typically can figure out how to run block. They may not be strong enough to do it well, but they can get in the way and let a back like Elliott try to find a hole. Run, run, run, run run, try to sneak in a play-action pass, then run, run, run, run run. Eat the clock if nothing else. I don't know if their kid QB is a runner, but if he is, unleash him. Until they change defensive systems they aren't going to stop many teams. There's a reason Nolan has only lasted two or three years at most DC jobs and it's not because his system is just too good and unfair to the rest of the league. It just doesn't work. Having defenders standing around and trying to decipher what the offense is doing is dumb. Offensive coordinators will set traps and your guys will fall right into them.

 

If those were the players who talked to Jane Slater and the other reporters then they deserve to get cut. They should be smart enough to know she's not going to blow her gig by refusing to tell the Cowboys who talked. She may not come out and name names directly, but the old "it wasn't him, it wasn't him, I can't say if it was that guy or not (it was), it wasn't him, it wasn't him" game works very well at figuring out who the guys were. Reporters need access to do their jobs. Who controls the access? The team. Defy the team and guess what? You lose access. Reporters aren't going to throw away their gig to protect some crybaby player. 

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

[ Edited ]

This will be a week I can just sit back and relax enjoy the games since it is the WFT Bye Week----- 

 

Time to make some picks-----

 

Falcons vs Panthers---  The Falcons continue on their losing ways....they are a franchise that needs to tear down their team and start a major rebuild....On the opposite side we have the Panthers who are already in the rebuild mode, and without a key player, but are still competing and playing hard.... I'm going with the PANTHERS...Sir Purr will certainly be purring after this WIN!

 

Steelers vs Ravens---  Two good teams ---- its a toss-up! I'll take the RAVENS just because they are playing at home....

 

Rams vs Dolphins---  Tua has his NFL debut against Aaron Donald-YIKES!!!! I saw what Donald did to Kyle Allen.....I'm going with the RAMS for the "W"!!!!

Chiefs vs Tanking For Trevor (also known as the JETS, JETS, JETS)...... The Jets are out of fuel, and should be out of the NFL since they arent playing like a professional team..... One wonders if Mahomes will be given a rest and backups inserted at the half....CHIEFS!

 

Vikings vs Packers---  Maybe WFT fans should thank Bruce Allen for moving on from Capt Kirk.....Now he's the Vikings problem, and not their only problem since their defense has been playing as well as their offense (which isnt saying much Woman Frustrated) The Packers got a wake up call after their loss to the Bucs and took it out on the Texans last week (maybe they looked at the Cowboy's record and thanked God that McCarthy is no longer their coach)----PACKERS all the way for the WIN!!! 

 

Colts vs Lions-- Those surprising Lions have won two games in a row!!!  Who would've thunk it that the Lions would have more wins than the Cowboys at this point in the season.....😁 Now they face the Colts and a good Colt's defense...Detroit's offensive line has been pretty good all year, especially opening up holes in the run game, and they've been much better the last couple weeks in protecting QB Matt Stafford too. The Lions have converted red-zone opportunities into touchdowns 75 percent of the time (6-of-8) the last two weeks and not settling for field goals as much. Meanwhile its been a transition for Philip Rivers as he adapts to his new team and teammates---still Rivers has completed 138-of-198 passes (69.7 percent) for 1,598 yards with 7 TDs, 6 INTS and a QB rating of 93.0. He ranks 6th in the NFL in completion percentage, 9th in yds per attempt (8.1) and 1st in net yards per attempt (7.78). The Colts also rank 10th in the league with 37 pass plays of 15 yards or more, which was a huge emphasis coming into the season. All that being said, I think it will be a close one as two good QBs duel it out, but the COLTS will get the WIN!

 

Raiders vs Browns----  Oh no there's a 60% chance of rain, so will Mayfield be focused on keeping the stadium 

"furniture" dry....or will he be focused on the game like he was last week....OBJ is out for the season (but he hasnt been much help anyway)......Meanwhile the 
Raiders have had an up and down season as stormy as the seven seas---after their BIG upset win over the Chiefs they collapsed to the other pirates, the Bucs....their D line has been an area of concern which should open things up for Mayfield (even without OBJ), and also their running game, and the Brown's defense has been decent too.....I'm going with the BROWNS ..........

 

Titans vs Bengals--- No doubt Burrows is the real deal, but their roster needs more talent for him to really shine. The Titans are playoff bound no doubt....TITANS!

 

Pats vs Bills---  Oh my, have fortunes changed, the Pats new QB may not struggle with his wardrobe, but he's sure struggling on the field....their defense isnt bad.  The Bills have struggled at times, but their team has more talent on offense than the Patriots --BILLS with the WIN!

 

Chargers vs Broncos---Herbert vs Lock---CHARGERS!

 

49ers vs Seahawks--- An NFC West rivalry game!!! The Seahawks poor defense got exposed as the Cardinals came back and won the game.  With all their injuries the 49ers are trying to hold it together.....and have had some good wins...Due to the Seahawks defense this game is a toss up, but I'll give a slight edge and the win to Russell Wilson and the SEAHAWKS at home!

 

Saints vs Bears---- Brees has gotten back on track even without Thomas, but Nick Foles has gone cold and looked downright awful against the Rams (interesting report by @teganslaw that Nick doe not see eye to eye with his HC).  The Saints are chasing the Bucs in their Division and need the win to stay close.....SAINTS with the WIN! 

 

Cowboys vs Eagles----  The Cowboys were demoralized with their loss against the WFT as the Cowboy's terrible defense was AGAIN exposed....and if that wasn't bad enough their QB Dalton is in concussion protocol so here comes that backup QB "sensation" Ben DiNucci against a good Eagles defensive front---OUCH!!! The Cowboy players don't seem to want to play for McCarthy, or any of their coaches. (I guess they miss "The Clapper"). The question is can the Eagles mash unit on offense put points on the scoreboard....Hey if the WFT can against that poor Cowboy defense, then ANYONE can...including the Eagles!!!  I predict that the EAGLES will have a solid win against this Cowboys team spiraling out of control....

 

Bucs vs Giants---- Tom Brady goes to NJ perhaps seeking to beat a team he lost to in the Super Bowl---But much has changed in Giant Land---instead of a Bucs defense facing Eli who was either throwing a pass downfield, or curled up in a fetal position when facing a pass rush, they now face Daniel Jones who trips over his own feet with no defensive players even in the vicinity....their defense is pretty decent....With Eli there was a possibility of pulling out a win, but with Daniel Jones at QB, they face someone who pulls defeat from a victory.....  Tommy will bring home a bounty of a win to the BUCS and Tampa Bay!

 

GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!!!

 

 

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!


@gardenman wrote:

@teganslaw 

 

There's some weird stuff going on in Chicago. I watched the Bears/Rams game and Nick was in hurry-up mode on one series and got to the line and called out the play and with lots of time left on the play clock, Nagy called a timeout. Nick looked very confused (I was too.) It made no sense. You've got to trust your QB in that situation. Nick's been around a long time. He's not going to do something too stupid. There was plenty of time on the clock. All calling timeout there did was let the Rams catch their breath.

 

Nick did tell the TV crew a week or so ago that there just isn't enough time in the pocket for the five and seven-step drops and he'll know they're doomed from the start as the o-line can't hold up. That's more of an indictment of the line than Nagy though. Nick says he'll know when he hears the call that those plays are doomed. He still tries to execute them, but he knows they won't work. 

 

Nagy calling timeout while the Bears were in a hurry-up mode and in rhythm just made no sense last week. I don't know what the heck Nagy was thinking or even if he was thinking. Nick seemed confused by it as did the rest of the offense who all looked around in confusion as to why the whistle was blowing. You don't want to waste a timeout but Nagy pretty much just threw one away there.


@gardenman 

 

So do you think the Bears will get rid of ?  Nagy or Foles....they dont seem to be on the same page at all!!!

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!

[ Edited ]

@gardenman I don't think you have anything to worry about this week.  I don't see a game on the Dallas schedule they can win at this point.

Woman Sad 

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!


@SPURT wrote:

@gardenman wrote:

@teganslaw 

 

There's some weird stuff going on in Chicago. I watched the Bears/Rams game and Nick was in hurry-up mode on one series and got to the line and called out the play and with lots of time left on the play clock, Nagy called a timeout. Nick looked very confused (I was too.) It made no sense. You've got to trust your QB in that situation. Nick's been around a long time. He's not going to do something too stupid. There was plenty of time on the clock. All calling timeout there did was let the Rams catch their breath.

 

Nick did tell the TV crew a week or so ago that there just isn't enough time in the pocket for the five and seven-step drops and he'll know they're doomed from the start as the o-line can't hold up. That's more of an indictment of the line than Nagy though. Nick says he'll know when he hears the call that those plays are doomed. He still tries to execute them, but he knows they won't work. 

 

Nagy calling timeout while the Bears were in a hurry-up mode and in rhythm just made no sense last week. I don't know what the heck Nagy was thinking or even if he was thinking. Nick seemed confused by it as did the rest of the offense who all looked around in confusion as to why the whistle was blowing. You don't want to waste a timeout but Nagy pretty much just threw one away there.


@gardenman 

 

So do you think the Bears will get rid of ?  Nagy or Foles....they dont seem to be on the same page at all!!!


How many teams have Nick played for? Eagles, Rams, Chiefs, Eagles again, Jags, and now the Bears. If it's Nick or Nagy, Nick can add another team's jersey to his closet. He'll be gone.

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Re: Week Eight of the 2020 NFL Regular Season!!!


@soonersis wrote:

@gardenman I don't think you have anything to worry about this week.  I don't see a game on the Dallas schedule they can win at this point.

Woman Sad 


@soonersis 

 

There are teams the Cowboys could beat, but I'm not sure they will. The Vikings and Giants games are very winnable. Both teams are playing badly. The Cowboys need to focus on running the ball more, a lot more. Run Elliott twenty-five to thirty times a game. Keep the ball away from the other offense. You can argue their best players are the wide receivers, but if the QB is getting killed, it doesn't matter. The Cowboys have reduced Elliott's workload since signing him to the big deal in an effort to preserve him since they now have to pay him for six years. The problem with that is that Elliott wears down a defense over time, but if he's only getting twelve carries, he's not wearing down the defense. Run the ball five or six times in a row, throw in a play action pass, then run the ball five or six times again.

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