Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

14 Dec 2005

Week 15 Rundown

We look at this week's slate of games, featuring the Cowboys vs. trees, the Texans vs. the devil, and the Patriots vs. the Bucs for only the sixth time in NFL history.

Posted by: Mike Tanier on 14 Dec 2005

28 comments, Last at 18 Dec 2005, 6:23pm by DGL


by Dan (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 5:33pm

I believe the line about the Giants being undefeated at home this year is incorrect - If I remember correctly, they gift wrapped and delivered a game to Minnesota earlier.

by Catfish (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 6:41pm

"If the Vikings are for real, they'll prove it this week. If Johnson is that good, he'll read the Steelers' blitz and pick it apart with short passes. If Tice is a coach worth keeping, he'll have his team ready to win a tough, physical game in the trenches.

Take the Steelers."

Awesome line.

by Kevo (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:03pm

"Jordan added that the Raiders' offense has been doing something physically impossible in recent weeks: it involves masonry and the excretory system."

Line of the week.

by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:32pm

Add to that Macbeth coming to Arlington, Texas, the Brokeback Mountain game never played between "Bruce" and "Pat", and Sparky the penguin, and Mike's culture references are reaching ludicrous speed.

What's next? Bob Harris' pudus?

by abe (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:33pm

Here's my line of the week:

In the 1970s and 1980s, a Bucs-Pats matchup would pit the dandy pirate with the twinkle in his eye against the Revolutionary War soldier in the compromising position. Nobody wanted to see that.

Another great job by Mike.

by Duane (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:41pm

Doesn't Reason Two for the Vikings' recent success negate, or at least dilute, Reason One?

by Will Allen (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:48pm

I wouldn't risk money on the Vikings to upset the Steelers, but if Williams tackles can win their battle in the interior line, which is not an outlandish propostion, the Vikings can win.

by Richard (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:52pm

"Conference and geographic factors have kept the teams apart, but there used to be deeper, helmet-related issues. In the 1970s and 1980s, a Bucs-Pats matchup would pit the dandy pirate with the twinkle in his eye against the Revolutionary War soldier in the compromising position. Nobody wanted to see that."

He said butt sex.

by Daniel (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:57pm

Love the O Brother Where Art Thou reference!

by CaffeineMan (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 7:57pm

Yeah, the Bruce vs. Pat reference is hilarious. :D

But the thing I'm wondering is, do the Falcons have a power-blocking O-line like the Steelers. Seems to me that it's not enough just to "run right at" the Bears, you have to overpower their D-line and I'm not convinced that Atlanta can do that.

by Mike Tanier :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 8:04pm

The Fox folks should be fixing the Giants home record soon. It seems as though I blotted the Vikings game from my memory...

...and I wish I had thought to reference Brokeback Mountain in Pats-Bucs

by Richard (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 8:10pm

re: #11


For those confused, it's a quote in the movie's trailer. I can't seem to not laugh when I hear that line.

by Richard (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 8:42pm

Deep in the fiery furnaces of Hades, the forces of evil are conspiring. No, they aren't composing new cell phone ring tones; they're inventing new ways for the Texans to lose.

Are you so sure they're not doing both?

This whole cell phone thing has gotten out of control. I'm not just talking about the ring tones. The inconsiderate talking. While driving, yes, but that's been said. People talking on cell phones in places that would otherwise be quiet and peaceful. People talking at inappropraite volumes, trying to traverse the distance of the conversation without the aid of that handheld technology.

I think the case has been made that the cell phone is too advanced for humans. Bring back the pigeons.

by Paytonrules (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 8:49pm

Ignoring matchups, the Bears have a higher DVOA and Weighted DVOA, plus you can add the home bonus ( I belive it's 17% ) and I'd imagine would therefore be a pretty safe favorite, at least based on the predictive powers of DVOA.

The Bears do match up well in a couple respects. ATL can't defend the run, and fast linebackers spy on Vick as well as anybody can do that.

by calig23 (not verified) :: Wed, 12/14/2005 - 8:56pm

Outstanding line number one:

In the 1970s and 1980s, a Bucs-Pats matchup would pit the dandy pirate with the twinkle in his eye against the Revolutionary War soldier in the compromising position. Nobody wanted to see that.

Outstanding line number two:

Beelzebub: All they can lose now is the #1 draft pick. So this week, we allow them to win.

-This would make for a good Gil Thorpe comic, btw...

Of course, so would the first one, but it might be a tad inappropriate. Or not!

by Jim Johnson (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 1:31am

Catfish is a moron for thinking the Vikes have anything in the belly. They will wilt before the Steelers. I am a Seahawk fan and don't follow the Steelers. But I am also a Packer fan. The Vikes have no guts. They are the real "paper tigers" of pro football.

by DGL (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 1:37am

Jim J -- Read the article and note the quotation marks in Catfish's comment.

by charles (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 1:48am

The cowboys won't win this week, they already broke out the flea-flicker and the reverse last week. They need trick plays to beat the redskins and they used them all.

by mshray63 (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 5:56am

I just started reading, but Dr. Seuss, Shakespeare & Geddy Lee in the first paragraph? Way to go Mike!

by st pete, FL (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 10:10am

LaMont Jordan, the $27.5 million running back the Raiders signed in March, was out-gained by the Jets' third-string quarterback on Sunday. Comments, LaMont?

As a Jets fan, there is so little to be glad for, but this makes me giddy!

by James, London (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 11:21am

"And Tice? Well, he didn't accidentally set fire to the locker room or anything."

This line might have got me fired. I laughed so hard my boss wanted to see what I was laughing at. This is not a good thing...

by Todd S. (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 1:07pm

#14 And, it's a System game. I'll be picking the Bears.

by Devin (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 3:14pm

Great article yet again! And keep the references to the great Rush album Hemispheres coming!

by Nate (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 4:34pm

I actually think the Bears are a good matchup against the Falcons. The Bears have speed in the front 7, and the Falcons have a weak run defense.Of course, our defense over the last couple of weeks has been almost has strong as Stephen Hawking's legs.

by dan (not verified) :: Thu, 12/15/2005 - 11:57pm

I think the Chiefs are a tough matchup for the Giants this week. W/o Pierce, I don't think Gonzalez can be slowed down, and the Giants DEs are pretty small for the KC power running game. When you further realize that both Giant OTs are hurting, well, it doesn't bode well.

by Hector, Paris (not verified) :: Fri, 12/16/2005 - 6:06am

: From the "magnanimous in victory" file, here is Broncos linebacker Ian Gold's appraisal of Kyle Boller. "He's not horrible," Gold said. "He's young and he's got a lot to learn, but he'll be all right." Added Denver Post columnist Thomas George: "It's a lot easier to say that when he's not on your sideline."

Sorry, but this one is hilarious !

by jubal (not verified) :: Sat, 12/17/2005 - 6:28pm

"The Patriots are auditioning for the role of "team no one wants to face in the playoffs," but this week they'll get a reminder that they are at least a notch below the league's best teams."

Erm, so what does that make the Bucs?Somewhere Tony Dungy is going "Uh-oh..."

by DGL (not verified) :: Sun, 12/18/2005 - 6:23pm

HOU 30, ARI 19.

Tanier, you're a genius.