Watched the night National games, skipped around on the Sunday morning games, but got the LV-CLE and PIT-Bal mostly. Afternoon was Saints-Bears.
It occurred to me that the Falcons are exactly the same team as the Cowboys. Better QB and WR in ATL, better RB in Dallas. 31st and 32nd defense. How is it the media talks about blowing up the Falcons (which needs to be done) and that the Boys are just a hair away from a Super Bowl run next year? Really weird.
Someone on the Falcons staff, Morris or Ulbrich spotted on tape that the Panthers have the worst center I can remember seeing. I actually made an effort to single him out for viewing and man he's terrible. He was lost and ineffective and that combined with a RB duo that never got their reads right was a disaster. Pretty simple scheme: hit the A or B gap, force the center to decide quick. Bring wide pressure from the C gap to clear the RB out there. The Falcons brought pressure up the middle all game. Allen and the Saints didn't see that the previous week, but the Panthers might not win again until they get that fixed.
I tried to watch a little of the Fins but it didn't hold my attention. The Steelers game held my attention. Team to beat right now obviously.
I watched the Raiders Browns a fair bit in the second half. For the hell of it this week I sent a note to someone I played HS football with and asked him if he remembered Coach Lee and the facemask butt kick. I asked how many facemask penalties he ever had (4 years at USC - 4 with the Bears). He replied - zero, none in HS, College or the NFL. Then unsolicited he asked if I'd been watching the Browns. He remembered the 5 facemasks they had against the Niners last year. He did point out in our exchange that now it's really hard to fix at the pro level because there's almost no tackling in practice. Still that was the game. Instead of 3rd and 15 with a chance to get the ball back down 7 with 10 minutes left it ended up down 10 and only 4 :30 left in the game. Killer.
Saints game was a lot of fun. Game of the day. Really would be nice to get a receiver or two back.
So who is the new Winston? Is it Wentz or Jones? They seem to be battling it out neck and neck for worst decision making. The Eagles can cruise into the playoffs and a home game if Wentz just makes one bone head play a game instead of 3 or 4.
I did watch the Niners practice squad get their asses kicked last night. Don't make a lot out of those late Dak Prescott style late touchdowns. The Packers where already picking out their Netflix choices for the plane ride home when the Niners scored those touchdowns.