Football Outsiders
Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis

Week 15 Open Game Discussion

The biggest game of the week is on Thursday night. With a win, Kansas City can all but wrap up home-field advantage in the AFC -- but with a loss, they open the door a crack for the L.A. Chargers to slip past them and win the AFC West. We've got a pair of Saturday games (Texans-Jets and Browns-Broncos); critical Sunday games such as Cowboys-Colts, Dolphins-Vikings, and Patriots-Steelers; and finally the Saints and Panthers on Monday night. Use this thread to discuss them all.


184 comments, Last at 20 Dec 2018, 9:35am

1 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

I see Schofield hasn't improved from when he was on the Broncos and is still about as effective at pass blocking as a traffic pylon.

2 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

First comment! Chiefs defense looking good. 1 int and 4 sacks, up 14-7. Hopefully Keenan Allen can come back - he was hurt in the 2nd quarter.

4 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

Hmm ... not sure if Phillip Rivers intention was to throw the ball away or just chuck it up there, but it looked like he needed a bigger arm on that throw.

11 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

LA (I was about to type SD) needed to take a timeout immediately after that missed helmet to helmet call. You aren't going to convince the refs so don't burn clock pointlessly.

20 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

That was what I thought, too (that the pass was likely uncatchable), but that wasn't what Aikman said. Instead, he kept saying that the DB had merely "grazed" the WR's arm.

I'm guessing that during his playing career (even with the rules they had back then), Aikman would not have been happy if, say, Darrell Green had "grazed" Irvin's arm in that way.

17 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

I'm surprised Philip Rivers knows immediately after the game the Chargers had more first downs. Do players keep track of stats like that during a game?

24 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

Chargers bust a move...glad for Rivers-been a long time 'comin. Noticed in article (USA-sports) that
Mahomes won't excel because, like Dan Marino, he's got no D. up it'll be off. line's fault, then OC, then HC. Trust me, seen that scenerio a time or 2 b4. He's exciting, he's good & all yes, but tends to be inaccurate/take unneccesary chances & in playoffs, it'll be exposed.

26 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

Based on history, including even the very recent history of the way the first half ended, with the end zone pick, yes. I spent the whole fourth quarter wondering how the Chargers were going to lose this game.

Even with the kick off with 4 seconds remaining, mentally I had the chances of the Chargers losing the game at 50 / 50. LOL

27 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

For what it's worth the KC pass D is ranked 15th by DVOA. It's a horrendous run D that drags down their ranking. The Chargers were obviously in a passing situation late in the game.. Chiefs just got beat.

The offense did nothing to bleed the clock when it was 28-21 so they can be partially to blame as well.

They were a mess on special teams for the 2 point conversion.

Sometimes elite teams just lose to other elite teams. This was likely a battle between the 2 best teams in the AFC. It's a shame one of them won't even get a home field playoff game.

29 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

The Chiefs have now lost three games this year - by three points to a 9-4 team, by three points to a 11-2 team, and by one point to a 11-3 team. While that's a pretty impressive record, it also doesn't bode well for them in the postseason.

32 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

Which would bode better?

- losses by more points
- losses to lesser teams

The Patriots have four losses to teams in the bottom half of the DVOA table. Are they better poised for a long playoff run than the Chiefs because they are 6-0 vs top 16 teams?

I ask this not sarcastically (well, not really). I'm just wondering what principle troubles you here. Clearly it's better to not lose at all. But what kind of losses are preferable to others?

I'd have thought close losses to good teams would be preferable to big losses and/or losses to inferior teams.

And it's not like the Chiefs haven't beaten any good teams. They started the seasons with road wins vs. Chargers and Steelers, and also have beaten Ravens and Broncos (twice). They also beat the Jags before the Jags' massive collapse.

38 Re: Week 15 picks

picks are in-

Ciefs 24, chargers 20 (of course game now over but this was my pick)
Texans 20, jets 16
Browns 31, Bobrocs 23
Falcons 27, Cardinals 17
Ravens 27, Buccaneers 17
BNills 23, Loins 22
Bears 36, Packers 16
Raiders 45, Bengals 20
Ckots 20, Cowboys 19
Squirrels 24, Jaguars 14
Vikgins 24, Dkpois 20
Titans 17, Giants 13
49ers 23, Seahawks 20
Patriots 38, Steelers 17
Rams 38, Eagles 30
Saimts 32, Pantehrs 27

43 Re: Week 15 picks

Yep tiugh ti pick them. Also tough to pick Jaguars these days. Toss up of two teams really stinking it up lately

Haven't ssen tumors about it but wonder id Squirrels keep losing if Jay Gruden woudl be canned. Woudl think he would be a good candidate for Browns or Jets.. not sure about Packers. Think Packsrs would like a first time head coach but what do i know

40 Re: Week 15 picks

"Does anyone here speak RJ?" "Excuse me stewardess, I speak RJ."

> Bears 36, Packers 16

Correctly spelled; I'm worried the scores are a typo. I'm expecting the Bears to lose 61-36 now.

> Dkpois

I had to figure this one out through process of elimination.

I had the Chiefs last night as well. For the rest of the weekend, I've got:

Texans 24 Jets 13
Browns 29 Broncos 15
Cardinals 9 Falcons 7
Bucs 31 Ravens 24
Lions 24 Bills 10
Bears 31 Packers 14
Bengals 36 Raiders 27 (sorry RJ)
Cowboys 28 Colts 24
Jaguars 31 Squirrels 3
Dolphins 25 Vikings 24
Giants 22 Titans 13
Seahawks 31 49ers 3
Patriots 27 Steelers 24
Rams 45 Eagles 10
Saints 51 Panthers 38

45 Re: Week 15 picks

Giants over Titans interestij pick. Would really get Giants fans excited and bum out Titans fans.usually somethijf weird will happen one og tjese final weeks. Yiu havd Bucs over Tavens and I havd 49ers over seahasks. If one of tjose does not happen then somethijg weird will happen in another game

47 Re: Week 15 picks

Yeah I like a meaningless late season Giants win streak to get everyone excited so they keep Eli and suck again next year. :)

174 Re: Week 15 picks

So, I had the Bears Bengals Texans and Browns as winners. That's 4/13. Good thing I'm not in Vegas this week.

49 Re: Week 15 picks

Browns 18 broncs 24
Cards 21 falcs 24
Raiders 21 bengel s14
Dolpgs 23 vuks 26
Cowbs 17 clots 24
Bucs 31 rabens 26
Loins 20 bils 11
Wadh 9 jags 9
Tits 20 gits 24
Seahwz 38 56ers 27
Pates 20 zteelfez 20
Easg 19 rama 36
Saint 39 pants 22

42 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

today, like the Texans to win by 10 or more....Browns/Broncs, wow, thats a tuff one to
call, both underrated....tossup in my opinion but I lean towards Browns. Mayfield is
wildcard in game.

75 Re: Week 15 Open Game Discussion

close on texan prediction (but wow, Watson holds onto that ball waaaay too long!)
Right on on the Browns prediction....they are comin them Brownies.

today I'm thinking Falc over Cards by 7+
Raiders/Bengals-a tie (both deserve a tie based on years performance)
Vikes by 7+
Colts by 7-
Ravens 10+
Bills 3-7
Bears/jags/Gians=7 or less winners 7-
Seahawks/Patriots by 3 or less 3-
Rams 7+
Panthers in upset

Biggest thing is Rams back on the rails...SB winner. They'll beat NE because
of defense getting to GOAT.