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Brees played hurt all season.

Unbelievable! - played through the season on a torn fascia in his foot and a torn rotator cuff to his throwing shoulder!
That is unbelievable. What a tough SOB. Damn.

This might change my certainty that he'll retire, and why he hasn't announced yet, the way Rivers did. If you look at the Saints roster, they were all in to win, now. They paid him a lot, and are heading towards salary cap hell next year, and beyond. They might be able to hold on and be excellent for one more year, and if Drew waits, feels like his body has completely healed, or will by late summer, he might give it one more go, thinking they were so close with him so very banged up, if he can stay relatively healthy just one more year...

The flip side of course, is that this may be proof that he should retire.
 
That is unbelievable. What a tough SOB. Damn.

This might change my certainty that he'll retire, and why he hasn't announced yet, the way Rivers did. If you look at the Saints roster, they were all in to win, now. They paid him a lot, and are heading towards salary cap hell next year, and beyond. They might be able to hold on and be excellent for one more year, and if Drew waits, feels like his body has completely healed, or will by late summer, he might give it one more go, thinking they were so close with him so very banged up, if he can stay relatively healthy just one more year...

The flip side of course, is that this may be proof that he should retire.
Someone on EPSN First Take said at the start of the season that the Saints should sit Brees out or not use him as much in the first couple games. That way he is less likely to be injured and then used towards the end of the season and playoffs. Heck in theory the lack of preseason and as much practice should of helped him a little more. I don't want to say what someone else should do with their life but I think it is time for him to hang them up. He has been getting injured, reported, each of the last seasons. Yes, there is always the "what if" but I think his health and future is more important. Maybe this year would have been different with fans in the Superdome but he would still have to go to Green Bay and he doesn't play as well away and in bad environments, which his injuries would have increased that difficulty. He's had an amazing career, better than everyone thought when he was drafted. Those 7-9 seasons have to sting for him and Peyton but they were wasting some of his best years. Like how they lost to the Raiders at home a couple years ago from a blocked PAT that was returned for Raider points.

What would be terrible is if he tries continuing than has the same issues as Luck before the season starts. No way the fans would turn against him like they did Luck but it would leave a bad taste in the mouth.
 
Someone on EPSN First Take said at the start of the season that the Saints should sit Brees out or not use him as much in the first couple games. That way he is less likely to be injured and then used towards the end of the season and playoffs. Heck in theory the lack of preseason and as much practice should of helped him a little more. I don't want to say what someone else should do with their life but I think it is time for him to hang them up. He has been getting injured, reported, each of the last seasons. Yes, there is always the "what if" but I think his health and future is more important. Maybe this year would have been different with fans in the Superdome but he would still have to go to Green Bay and he doesn't play as well away and in bad environments, which his injuries would have increased that difficulty. He's had an amazing career, better than everyone thought when he was drafted. Those 7-9 seasons have to sting for him and Peyton but they were wasting some of his best years. Like how they lost to the Raiders at home a couple years ago from a blocked PAT that was returned for Raider points.

What would be terrible is if he tries continuing than has the same issues as Luck before the season starts. No way the fans would turn against him like they did Luck but it would leave a bad taste in the mouth.
Retirement seems like a sound decision to me as it was for Andrew Luck. Rivers is also making the right move I think.
 
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Would love to hear your thoughts on those, Movingtarget. :)

As far as teams improving. I think no matter how you slice it both Cleveland and Buffalo look like serious contenders next season. But we already knew that. Miami is another team that looks poised to do extremely well next season. I also like the direction Washington is headed.

I like Dallas chances better next year, but they still have problems. I have little faith in Jerry Jones letting his staff coach, and only mild faith in McCarthy to get the job done. Hiring Dan Quinn was a great move, and having Dak back is a huge plus.

Carolina has talent across the board, but I'm not sure Bridgewater is the QB to lead them to the promised land. Watson? Maybe?

The Jets have such a long road to climb, the great news is I too think Robert Saleh can change that team and bring needed positive energy. The issue is QB. I presume Darnold is probably done there, unless Saleh and LeFleur love him. Watson may be expensive, so does this mean Justin Fields is worth taking at #2? When they could get a player like OT Sewell, or Davonta Smith or Ja'Marr Chase, both who look like instant WR stars? They have two draft picks in Rd1, and 8 picks over the first five rounds, plus a whopping $62m free in cap space (only JAX has more). They have a chunk of dead money, but most of that went to CJ Mosely, who didn't play in 2020, after missing most of 2019. This is an enviable situation to be in, and there's optimism with Woody Johnson back at the top (brother Christopher was very player-friendly, but not the best decision maker), things could turn out quite well. Tough division though.

TB actually has nearly $30m in cap space next year. NE has $50m.

The Saints, as I mentioned before, are headed to Salary Cap Hell, a staggering $119m over the cap, which explains another reason I expect Brees has played his last game.

Somehow, Gruden and the Raiders have managed to put them $20m over the cap.
 
I'm sticking with my predictions. I like GB in the weather there, though it doesn't look quite as bad as it was predicted. This is, unless GB is down late, or by double digits. As great as Rodgers is, he's not great at big comebacks. I don't think it will come to that though. GB can both run and pass, and is solid on D, and in those conditions, that D will bend without breaking. No team has ever had a "home" Super Bowl (SF won playing in Stanford's stadium aeons ago in 1985), and Tampa has that chance to get there.

I still like Buffalo in an upset. However, if KC has the ball with 1 minute left in the game and down 1 score, KC has a better than 50% chance of winning. I also think if KC is down two scores with under 3 minutes to play, they could still win. That's how dangerous Mahomes is, and from what I can tell, he's 99% ready to go.

I think most people want to see GB and KC in the SB. Rodgers versus Mahomes. That certainly could be fun.
 
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21-10 Bucs at the half time. Good play for both teams but Bucs playing a little better. Packers are lucky Johnson dropped the ball otherwise they could be down by more. Packers to receive.

Is it happening?!?! I haven't wanted to say anything to not jinx them.
 
Would love to hear your thoughts on those, Movingtarget. :)

As far as teams improving. I think no matter how you slice it both Cleveland and Buffalo look like serious contenders next season. But we already knew that. Miami is another team that looks poised to do extremely well next season. I also like the direction Washington is headed.

I like Dallas chances better next year, but they still have problems. I have little faith in Jerry Jones letting his staff coach, and only mild faith in McCarthy to get the job done. Hiring Dan Quinn was a great move, and having Dak back is a huge plus.

Carolina has talent across the board, but I'm not sure Bridgewater is the QB to lead them to the promised land. Watson? Maybe?

The Jets have such a long road to climb, the great news is I too think Robert Saleh can change that team and bring needed positive energy. The issue is QB. I presume Darnold is probably done there, unless Saleh and LeFleur love him. Watson may be expensive, so does this mean Justin Fields is worth taking at #2? When they could get a player like OT Sewell, or Davonta Smith or Ja'Marr Chase, both who look like instant WR stars? They have two draft picks in Rd1, and 8 picks over the first five rounds, plus a whopping $62m free in cap space (only JAX has more). They have a chunk of dead money, but most of that went to CJ Mosely, who didn't play in 2020, after missing most of 2019. This is an enviable situation to be in, and there's optimism with Woody Johnson back at the top (brother Christopher was very player-friendly, but not the best decision maker), things could turn out quite well. Tough division though.

TB actually has nearly $30m in cap space next year. NE has $50m.

The Saints, as I mentioned before, are headed to Salary Cap Hell, a staggering $119m over the cap, which explains another reason I expect Brees has played his last game.

Somehow, Gruden and the Raiders have managed to put them $20m over the cap.
I'm not really one for making predictions about about yards and points and who is going to do what what. I was right about the Hawks and Steelers going out early but have been consistently wrong about the Bucs. Skip Bayless will have a smile on his face at the moment. I think the Bills were the best team the 49ers faced this season.

Saints window might be closing, The Raiders are always an enigma. Beat the Chiefs and possibly could have beat them twice but then lose easy games. Their last minute loss to send them out of the playoffs was horrific. Lots of teams will be targeting Watson but if they sign the Chiefs OC as head coach I think Watson will stay. The Bears will be interested, have doubts about the 49ers trading for him as they will be going through a cull anyway and can't afford to lose too many pieces. With them it would probably be picks not players. Letting Buckner go last year is looking like a mistake. Be interested to see what Shanahan has in mind for Rosen, either he sees something that others don't or he is there purely as a back up QB. Tampa is in a great position for next season. I see the Jets maybe taking longer than a season to turn things around even though Saleh is a great signing for them.

Agree about Buffalo and the Browns. Miami is obviously on the up. I'm in two minds about the Patriots even with their cap position. Obviously they will be getting defense back but the QB is a must have as are some quality WRs. Not too convinced by the Cowboys forecast although signing the new DC will help.Stafford has asked for a trade and many people have mentioned the 49ers as being a taker. Can't say I'm convinced on that one either. He's getting paid more then jimmy and also gets injured quite a lot although with multiple injuries, he didn't miss a game this season unlike Jimmy who is injured every season and missing games. I don't see the 49ers drafting a QB in the early rounds, I tend to think they will ride one more season with Jimmy.

The competition to sign a quality QB will be fascinating. The next draft should be very interesting with not that many QBs being rated that high. Jags, Jets and Denver obviously need one as do the Colts now. The Bears need an upgrade unless they think Foles can come back and do it. WFT need a replacement for Smith going forward, the 49ers will be surveying the market and now there is more talk about Cousins and the 49ers which was the hot topic before Jimmy was traded to them. Something tells me that the Falcons and maybe even the Patriots are going to offload players and start again and someone will interested in Ryan maybe the Rams ? Goff is currently in a similar position to Jimmy at the 49ers. Both coaches could use an upgrade at the moment. What happens with Wentz is anyone's guess.
 
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TB looked good on both sides of the ball with the exception of two really bad throws/decision by TB12. TB12 in another Super Bowl.

Why would GB defer and give TB that opportunity? I know the assertions: an extra second half possession, a chance for an end of Q2 score and open of Q3 score, a possession after making 1/2 time adjustment, etc. All that might be great if you're playing the jets, but do you really want to give TB and TB12 the early lead?! When both team score a touchdown the team who scores first has a 66% chance of winning if I remember correctly. That seems like really simple math to me. Take the Fn ball!

KC deferred and put themselves in hole that they climbed out of...(its only 1/2 time)...

EDIT: And there we have it KC vs. TB!
 
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As a lot of people expected it seems, the Bills defense wasn't as good as the Chiefs offense. The Bills struggled to convert points as the Chiefs suffocated Diggs and put constant pressure on Allen. Field goals was never going to be enough against the Chiefs. The Bills O line was mediocre and Mahomes also seemed to have forever to throw the ball. Too many easy yards for the Chiefs. But Allen will be better for the experience. I still think like the Steelers, the Bills need a better run game to take some of the load off Allen and chew the clock. They had enough ball but couldn't convert when needed.

Two seasons in a row Rodgers goes out in the conference final and he will be very disappointed. GB had enough turnovers to win the game and some of the play calls were a bit iffy. The Bucs defense was superior and they were too good on the day though GB had opportunities but like the Bills couldn't make the most of them.

The Chiefs looked in control apart from the messy start to the game but once they settled they were superior all over the field. The Bucs will have to be at the top of their game to have a chance which means keeping the turnovers to a minimum, something Brady has been struggling with of late. Be interesting to see how the Bucs defense competes and they have a better run game than the Bills. They have to be able to pressure Mahomes. It worked for the 49ers in the last SB until midway through the final quarter when the 49ers offense collapsed and that was that. You have to keep Mahomes off the field as much as possible obviously !
 
It seems that all the buzz is the decision for GB to kick the FG. They couldn't punch it in on 1st, 2nd, or 3rd downs, the likelihood of them making it on 4th was low, but making it on 4th and making the 2 point conversion was extremely low.

I wonder how many times AR is going to 'hint' that his future is unknown/mystery?
 
I was wrong in both my predictions. But the TB/GB game was for me as frustrating to watch as it was exciting. It's like the better team didn't win, but the team that played better sure did. The mistakes on GB's part (the TD at the end of the 1st half eerily reminiscent to the 2012 divisional loss to the Giants when Eli threw a hail mary); when it looked like Rodgers had a clear path to run for a TD late, but tried to jam a throw into a tight window; not go go for the tie on 4th down, which had they not gotten it, would have pinned TB deep; then the questionable PI call late, which was not consistent with how the game had been refereed. Still Tampa's defense has really stepped up of late. They played their best when it mattered most. Same with their offense, really.
Why would GB defer and give TB that opportunity.
I think they were going for the sun to their backs in the 2nd quarter, and maybe the wind. As you noted, that didn't make a difference, instead Tampa's early score, which Brady is so great at, was the difference.

Props to KC for putting together such a superb gameplan, and executing. I didn't think just rushing 5 guys (sometimes only 4) and doubling Diggs would put Buffalo in such pressure, but it did, time and again. Trading FG's for TD's also hurt Buffalo. I was also surprised that Tony Romo had at least partial solutions to slow KC, such as having a DE or OLB "chip" Kelce at the line, putting a man on Hill during zone coverage, mixing up blitzes (the Bills rarely blitzed) when their original gameplan of allowing small chunks of yards wasn't stopping KC enough. But the Bills didn't seem to adapt. Granted, they would have lost anyway I think. Some OL tooling, a power back, help at TE, and the Bills are going to be back for sure.

While it's a safe pick to assume KC will beat Tampa by more than a TD, I think only a fool would count Brady and TB out. Tom had an okay game, and made mistakes he's not likely to make again. I think TB's running game is obviously better than Buffalo. This may help with protection where Buffalo didn't have it. Tom's experience will also vastly help the entire team in a way Buffalo (Cleveland for that matter) didn't have. TB as a whole is obviously well coached, and well seasoned, which counts for a great deal. Playing a home may help a tiny amount as well.
 
I was wrong in both my predictions. But the TB/GB game was for me as frustrating to watch as it was exciting. It's like the better team didn't win, but the team that played better sure did. The mistakes on GB's part (the TD at the end of the 1st half eerily reminiscent to the 2012 divisional loss to the Giants when Eli threw a hail mary); when it looked like Rodgers had a clear path to run for a TD late, but tried to jam a throw into a tight window; not go go for the tie on 4th down, which had they not gotten it, would have pinned TB deep; then the questionable PI call late, which was not consistent with how the game had been refereed. Still Tampa's defense has really stepped up of late. They played their best when it mattered most. Same with their offense, really.

I think they were going for the sun to their backs in the 2nd quarter, and maybe the wind. As you noted, that didn't make a difference, instead Tampa's early score, which Brady is so great at, was the difference.

Props to KC for putting together such a superb gameplan, and executing. I didn't think just rushing 5 guys (sometimes only 4) and doubling Diggs would put Buffalo in such pressure, but it did, time and again. Trading FG's for TD's also hurt Buffalo. I was also surprised that Tony Romo had at least partial solutions to slow KC, such as having a DE or OLB "chip" Kelce at the line, putting a man on Hill during zone coverage, mixing up blitzes (the Bills rarely blitzed) when their original gameplan of allowing small chunks of yards wasn't stopping KC enough. But the Bills didn't seem to adapt. Granted, they would have lost anyway I think. Some OL tooling, a power back, help at TE, and the Bills are going to be back for sure.

While it's a safe pick to assume KC will beat Tampa by more than a TD, I think only a fool would count Brady and TB out. Tom had an okay game, and made mistakes he's not likely to make again. I think TB's running game is obviously better than Buffalo. This may help with protection where Buffalo didn't have it. Tom's experience will also vastly help the entire team in a way Buffalo (Cleveland for that matter) didn't have. TB as a whole is obviously well coached, and well seasoned, which counts for a great deal. Playing a home may help a tiny amount as well.
There was nothing questionable about that PI call. The stripes had been letting a lot of hands, and bumping go, but pulling the receiver to slow him down is too blatant to let go.
 
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