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National Football League

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Merckx index said:
We were discussing weather earlier. The two conferences offer an interesting contrast in that respect. All of the WC games except KC at HOU are in cold weather cities. But after the WC round, both NFC games will be played in warm weather cities, while both AFC games will be played in cold weather places. That is very likely to be the case for the title games as well. The AFC championship will be played in a cold weather city unless all three of the top seeds lose, which is quite unlikely, and the NFC championship will be played in a warm weather city unless both CAR and AZ lose, which I think is even more improbable.
Denver is a bit of both though, isn't it? They can have snow games and freezing temperatures, but I remember the Pats @ Denver championship game in the 3rd week of January all the fans were in Hawaian t shirts and the temperature was 65 degrees fahrenheit, which over here in London is basically average July high.
 
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Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
Now, for something quite different. Chicago data scientist (and neuroscientist) Nasir Bhanpuri has come up with a mathematical calculation that determines the teams most likely to face off in the Super Bowl. He crunched massive amounts of data. So accurate was Bhanpuri's math the last two seasons, his formula was correct in predicting the last two Super Bowls, both teams! His call for this year?

The Bengals will defeat the Cardinals.

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Real link please, this looks interesting.
 
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I have a friend in another place who has seriously gone for HOU, CIN, MIN and GB. My picks are the same as most peoples'.

KC @ HOU
PIT @ CIN
SEA @ MIN
GB @ WSH
 
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Alpe d'Huez said:
KC Houston game ugly. Chiefs look pretty solid though. Have to wonder how bad Maclin is hurt though.

What an understatement. "The Texans will probably look for a new quarterback. !" The look on their coach's face never changed much. It was glum from the start and stayed that way. The Chiefs probably should have had the game put away at halftime but the second half got no better for the Texans. Incredible start to the game all the same.
 
Can’t believe the Bengals blew that game. Have the lead with less than two minutes to go, deep in Pittsburgh territory, all they have to do is run down the clock and kick a FG. Even when the Steelers got the ball, they had to make a long drive with an injured QB. Thirty yards of unnecessary penalties.

This might be good news for Denver, they get the Steelers, but will Ben be at 100%? NE gets KC, which will be tougher than Cincy without Dalton, maybe tougher than Cincy with Dalton, assuming he could have played.

Bengals
1st half: 2 1st downs, 57 yards total offense
2d half: 17 1st downs, 216 yards total offense

Here’s an amazing stat. This is just the fourth postseason game the Chiefs have won in the past 45 years, and all of them were with QBs who formerly played for the 49ers: Alex Smith this year; Montana in 1993; De Berg in 1991. After that, you have to go all the way back to SB 4.

De Berg had an interesting career, to say the least. Though he was a backup most of the time—as you might expect when you play on teams with Joe Montana, John Elway and Steve Young—he’s in the top 20 for career attempts, completions and yards. He was the oldest QB ever to start an NFL game, at 44—take that, Bret Favre—and at 45 the oldest on a SB roster. He apparently still holds the record for the lowest single season interception percentage.

Wrt that playoff prediction model, Alpe, unless I missed it, like so many others, it ignores an important factor: the actual postseason schedule. If two teams that are theoretically equal based on regular season performance differ in that one gets a bye, and the other doesn’t, the one with a bye has an edge. That’s simple statistics. No matter how good a team is, there is some significant probability that it will lose any given game. The more games, the greater the likelihood of being eliminated.

E.g., suppose a team is favored to win any game with 70% probability, which is quite high for postseason competition. This is oversimplified, but good enough to illustrate the problem. The probability of winning four games, as a WC must do to go all the way, is about one in four. For a team with a bye, the probability of winning three games is about one in three. If the probability of winning any game is less than 0.70, the difference between playing four games and playing three games becomes greater.

So as good as SE and Pitt may be, they do have a handicap, quite apart from playing on the road. In the NFC, where three teams stand out from the others, there is a further handicap in who you have to play. If SE beats MN, as I think is highly likely, they will play CAR. That means AZ will only have to beat one of those teams to make it to the SB, whereas both SE and CAR will have to beat the other, plus AZ, assuming AZ wins its divisional game. Of course it’s possible SE might lose, then CAR wouldn’t have to play them, but the point is, we know going in that AZ definitely will not have to play both SE and CAR, whereas there is a good chance that SE and CAR will have to play each other, with the winner meeting AZ.
 
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jmdirt said:
Nothing like giving the other team 30 free yards huh?!
Yeah, and the victory. Like the post game crew put it for Cincy - "How to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory".

Gents, that has got to be the most disgraceful NFL game I have ever watched. If you watched, you all saw it. So I'm not even going to mention details. But I will say that if I was Cincy HC Marv Lewis I'd cut both Pacman Jones and Vontaz Burfict. There's no place for any what they did in the NFL. Then if I was the Bengals owner I'd consider whether I'd want to fire HC Marv Lewis or not, depending on how Marv handles these two morons. Thing is, Marv's control of the player's was already out of hand before the game started.

Other than that, Pit LB Shazier needs to learn how to tackle by not dropping his head. But at least his hit was within the rules and not malicious, even if it was poor technique.
 
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on3m@n@rmy said:
jmdirt said:
Nothing like giving the other team 30 free yards huh?!
Yeah, and the victory. Like the post game crew put it for Cincy - "How to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory".

Gents, that has got to be the most disgraceful NFL game I have ever watched. If you watched, you all saw it. So I'm not even going to mention details. But I will say that if I was Cincy HC Marv Lewis I'd cut both Pacman Jones and Vontaz Burfict. There's no place for any what they did in the NFL. Then if I was the Bengals owner I'd consider whether I'd want to fire HC Marv Lewis or not, depending on how Marv handles these two morons. Thing is, Marv's control of the player's was already out of hand before the game started.

Other than that, Pit LB Shazier needs to learn how to tackle by not dropping his head. But at least his hit was within the rules and not malicious, even if it was poor technique.
I thought that leading with the crown of the helmet was a penalty so I was surprised that there was no flag on that play.
 
That was something. Very intense game, but the Bengals have no one to blame but themselves. Ugly indeed.

I've "liked" Pittsburgh for a few weeks now, but if Ben and Brown aren't close to 100%, they will have a very hard time with Denver's defense. And if the weather is at all decent, and he really is healthy, PM will carve up the Steeler defense in ways AJ McCarron never could.

KC-NE is intriguing.
 
Re:

Alpe d'Huez said:
That was something. Very intense game, but the Bengals have no one to blame but themselves. Ugly indeed.

I've "liked" Pittsburgh for a few weeks now, but if Ben and Brown aren't close to 100%, they will have a very hard time with Denver's defense. And if the weather is at all decent, and he really is healthy, PM will carve up the Steeler defense in ways AJ McCarron never could.

KC-NE is intriguing.

Great self destruction job by the Bengals. The coach looked disgusted at the finish. I could not believe some of the idiotic penalties and the last head clash looked deliberate and ugly and will probably result in a suspension. That guy was just out of control. Not to mention some of the manhandling of the officials by some of the Bengals players. What were they thinking ? Obviously not much.
 
After watching the last minute of the game a few times, and also listening to Deion Sanders, I'm wondering why Porter wasn't flagged too. Let me be clear that I'm not excusing Jones, but it should have been off-setting unsportsmanlike calls. We will never know if that would have made a difference in the game or not (Boswell could still hit it, or they could have run another play or two to get closer...).

Other thoughts: Burfict is a big reason why the Cinci D is good, he is a big reason why they had a chance to win, he made big play all night, he made what should have been the game winning pick, he made a great rush to sack Ben for a big loss, that big, legal hit put Ben out for a while. His hit on Brown was stupid, selfish, and dangerous, but the emotion that makes him so good, can also make him bad sometimes. If that hit is in the first three quarters no one is even going to talk about it. The timing of the hit makes it more noteworthy, and detrimental. If that is the only penalty in that time gap, Cinci still might have won, and we wouldn't be talking about Burfict's recklessness as much or even at all. Not that it matters, but I wonder if the NFL would have had the balls to suspend Vontez for the next playoff game had Cinci won?

I have the Seahawks and the Skins today.