Week 6 Open Discussion

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence
Jacksonville Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

Week 6 kicks off with Jalen Hurts and the Eagles (2-3) hosting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-1). Sunday begins with another game from the U.K. as Miami (1-4) "visits" the Jaguars (0-5), which is a matchup of two teams who have cocked things up and gone all to bloody pot, innit? Other notable Sunday games include Green Bay (4-1) at Chicago (3-2), the L.A. Chargers (4-1) at Baltimore (4-1), Arizona (5-0) at Cleveland (3-2), and Las Vegas (3-2) at Denver (3-2). The Sunday night game sees Geno Smith and the Seahawks (2-3) visit Pittsburgh (2-3) in what feels like a loser-out game, and Buffalo (4-1) visits Tennessee (3-2) on Monday night. Use this thread to discuss them all.


186 comments, Last at 19 Oct 2021, 3:14pm

2 I have a feeling that Carr…

I have a feeling that Carr will pump up the Raiders for an emotional win in Denver.

He's got that look in his eye.  What say you, RJ?

22 Yearh, no problem. Raiders…

Yearh, no problem. Raiders should defeat Broncos by something liKe 27-13. 24-14, 23-14, 24-13, 27-17, something that. Raiders really vetter all over. Head coahc new btu will be fine. Carr willl have look in eye that say, "Yes, Broncos, I willl  ride you nwo liek old mare at 'ride the pony' attraction at resort town." 


4 Eagles.

I thought the Eagles might put up a fight, but their defense is basically parting the sea for Brady to find receivers.

Might be over quick, even though Richard Sherman is out with a hammy!

5 Jalen Hurts...


My goodness, didn't know the Eagles OL was shuffling that much.

10 Great play by Jamel Dean on…

Great play by Jamel Dean on the pick there. The receiver wildly mis-timed his jump, but that was because Dean had perfect position.

I feel like Hurts has underthrown all his deep balls tonight.

11 Actually...

If you followed Hurts, he's been under throwing most of his deep passes.  Not sure if it's just his throwing motion or lack of arm.

It's going to be a huge limitation in the NFL, though.

13 Hurts.

I understand he's basically a rookie, but he doesn't look NFL ready at all.

No touch on this passes.  Under throws, over throws.

They aren't really helping him with the offense they're running, either.

Reminds me of Trey Lance in his start versus my Cards.

14 Traditional stats

Traditional stats look so silly when I am used to seeing DVOA.  Tampa has the worst pass defense according to the broadcast.  OK so Tampa allows a lot of pass yardage because no one wants to run against them.  DVOA has them 18th against the pass, mediocre not the worst.

16 The complete inability of…

In reply to by jheidelberg

The complete inability of some announcers to grasp the concepts of pace and tactics vis a vis yardage and points is honestly embarrassing at this point. I get that they're talking about the CB injuries but those numbers don't show what they think they do. Didn't we go through all this with the Manning Colts always having the "worst" defense (because they scored so much, so fast, the other team had a million possessions needing to pass to keep up) literally 15 years ago?

23 The Bucs pass D might not be…

The Bucs pass D might not be last in the NFL bad, but its 18th rank in DVOA probably oversells its competence. The secondary got diced up by the Cowboys and the Rams, the only two strong passing games they've faced all year. They had the game in the rain against the Pats and last week's blowout against the Brissett Dolphins to boost their DVOA, but their secondary will be an issue against any top tier team they play.

25 Yeah, it's almost like they…

Yeah, it's almost like they're hollow, or a paper tiger, however you want to say it. If you can challenge the field, you can dice them up because the CBs aren't fundamentally sound.

But if your offense relies on short passing to try to open up the field more for marginal receivers, that's not going to work.

24 And they were stupid DPIs,…

And they were stupid DPIs, not "oh crap, this guy's too fast, DPI is better than a TD."

The first one was the type of DPI I hate the most, the "secret underthrow DPI" where it happens because no sane QB would underthrow a receiver that bad, so the CB's caught by surprise. With a better CB those can turn into picks.

I don't know what was going on with the second one: CB was in perfectly good coverage and then just... sticks his hand on the receiver and grabs. Absolutely no reason to do it.

26 Eh, looked over those DPIs…

Eh, looked over those DPIs again - the second one might've been a "DPI instead of a TD" except he really didn't need to do it - and I don't actually think he managed to actually screw up the receiver at all. So it was actually the worst of all the things that he could do - committed a penalty that wouldn't actually have stopped the receiver anyway had the throw or receiver been better.

20 Hilariously, this game is…

Hilariously, this game is all of a sudden within one score. Iggles got the 2pt conversion too.

If the Bucs manage to lose this after all of that they should just cancel the rest of their season.

27 Can you help?

Has going for two on the first td ever worked? It’s been a tool for about four seasons now, and despite all the nerds thinking it’s great, I can’t recall it working. 

28 It really isn't a "nerd"…

In reply to by Jetspete

It really isn't a "nerd" thing. The only way it can't 'work' is if the opponent's behavior changes due to the score deficit (or if the 'true' 2-pt conversion percentage is significantly lower than the observed). As in, if your opponent plays differently when they're down by 6 versus down by 7 - which might be true, mind you, but that's due to human behavior and not optimal play.

It's the same thing as asking which game would you play:

1: win $10 on a single coin flip
2: win $10 on a single coin flip, and if you lose, if you win 2 coin flips in a row, I'll still give you $10

No one in their right mind would ever choose the first game. It's clearly worse than the second one.

32 I didn’t ask for your game…

I didn’t ask for your game theory analysis. I asked for a real life example of the strategy working. The goal of this strategy appears to be to get your team ahead by 1 late in the game, and that going for 2 early gives you “more information.”  The problem is you don’t get to decide when you get up by 1. We saw last week Detroit go for 2, get the lead And still lose! I’d rather get 7, get the ball then know how much time I have left to go for the win, because being tied vs behind with a minute to go DEFINITELY changes the actions of my opponent. 

also it’s foolish to think being up 6 vs 7 even with five minutes left wouldn’t change an opponent’s strategy these are humans, not robots  


34 As the poster sated below.

It's easier to get 2 when you have 2 stabs at it. The earlier you do it the more info you have for later. Succesful first time? Cool a 94% extra point wins (with another TD of course). Fail first time? Still get another stab at it to tie it (with another TD of course). You're bound to get one of those two 2 pt conversions. Going for 1 the first time forces you to be 100% going for 2 or you straight LOSE. Much easier to go 1/2  from 2.

The problem with the Eagles is...they never got the other TD. Which happens. You're down 14 for a reason, chances are you aren't good in the first place. They played it right, just didn't work out.

Hope that helps. 

37  Going for 1 the first time…

 Going for 1 the first time forces you to be 100% going for 2 or you straight LOSE.

Going for 1 the first time means going for 2 the second time is no better than going to overtime (in the 50/50 simplification). You've gotten rid of the "go for 2 twice, miss the first get the second, go to overtime and win" option.

It is definitely a valid criticism of the strategy that with as conservative as NFL coaches tend to play, you might be (currently) better off lulling them into the 50% overtime shot rather than putting them in desperation mode. The strategy might be "too young."

That being said, it's kindof hilarious to think "we need to play for overtime otherwise these guys will realize if they just try to score really aggressively, they usually can."

45 You don't have to go for 2…

You don't have to go for 2 if you go for 1 the first time. You could just kick the extra point and go to overtime. Going for 2 to win it directly the second time is very high variance (how much your win % changes with each decision). Going for 2 the first time is less so. Never going for 2 (going for the extra point both times) is the lowest variance.

46 But that's the entire point.

To try and win before OT. Youre going for 2 because youre already down and likely not the favorite and don't want to give the better team more time to beat you.

They aren't playing for the tie in the first place. The entire point of the strat.

47 Youre going for 2 because…

Youre going for 2 because youre already down and likely not the favorite and don't want to give the better team more time to beat you.

Going for 2 first is strictly better from a win % regardless of risk/variance considerations. It's not a "you don't want to get to OT." The 'naive' guess (100% extra point, 50% go-for-2) is a 12.5% win percentage increase (62.5% go for 2 first, 50% go for 1 first, all multiplied by the possibility of getting another TD and holding your opponent). Even if you're the better team, you'd want to do it. The only reasons for not doing it are:

1) you want to lull your opponent into playing conservatively (not an insignificant consideration)
2) if you weight risk/variance really highly, in which case you should go to OT


51 I'm not arguing to argue…

I'm not arguing to argue. This statement:

Youre going for 2 because youre already down and likely not the favorite and don't want to give the better team more time to beat you.

is wrong for this strategy.

You're absolutely right this is what you should do on the last TD if you're deciding to go for 2 or go to overtime, though. If you're the worse team, go for the higher-risk option. But that's a game theory argument. Going for 2 first down 2 TDs is strictly better unless you're bluffing.

55 Just stop

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

Seriously. You're clearly not understanding.

See how condescending that is?

58 Pot calling kettle black.

In reply to by Pat

I told you to stop because I'm done responding to you on this made up argument for the sake of arguing about minor semantics and not the actual point at hand that op asked for.

You've gotten rid of the "go for 2 twice, miss the first get the second, go to overtime and win" option.

What do you think I saying was implied? Of course this was an option. Geez. I didn't get "rid of" anything. You always do this in convos. 

I'm done either way.

35 I'm saying if, in the end,…

I'm saying if, in the end, the strategy does not prove better than just going for the extra point and going for the tie, then it must be because the opponent's behavior changes, and the opponent plays too conservatively. It's impossible for the strategy itself to be wrong. Being up by 1 at the end of the game versus tied is objectively better. It's not actually a "more information" benefit. It's just strictly a higher winning percentage because ending the game tied is only a 50/50 win chance in overtime.

Maybe it might be better to compare it to poker? As in, maybe it is a better option to play for a tie because you're bluffing that you think your super-confident your defense can stop them and trying to scare them into being conservative.

In which case, going for the tie (and overtime) might be better until opponents start calling the bluff, at which point it again becomes better to go for 2 early.


also it’s foolish to think being up 6 vs 7 even with five minutes left wouldn’t change an opponent’s strategy these are humans, not robots 

I don't get the "humans vs robots" comment. If the Lions had just gone for 1 and tied and the Vikings had just knelt and went to overtime, that's almost certainly bad strategy on their part. There's less risk trying to win the game then and there than waiting for overtime.

What I'm trying to say (and probably doing it badly) is that you might be right that right now it's a bad option because you're better off lulling the opponent into being conservative. But eventually as coaches continue to get more aggressive, that'll change.

42 But youre not randomly…

But youre not randomly guessing that your opponent will play more conservatively, theres decades of evidence to support it.  if you take a one point lead, with lets say 60 seconds left, theres a 100% chance your opponent will do everything they can to score.  If it's tied, the % decreases substantially.  When you go for 2 early, you give up knowing exactly how much time is left when you score that second touchdown.  

if you want to compare it to poker, the better analogy is asking if you want to bluff your opponent on the flop or on the river.  A bluff on the flop is usually simpler because either your opponent has something or they dont.  But on the river, you have much more information as to whether or not they made their hand and are susceptible.  

44  that your opponent will…

 that your opponent will play more conservatively, theres decades of evidence to support it.

There's decades of evidence that the average coach is conservative. The guy across the way might not be, in which case you would be actively making it easier for him to win.

33 going for 2

In reply to by Jetspete

Actually, that was a perfect illustration of the situation.  The only problem was they didn't stop TB, and get the ball back, and score the second TD.  But they did put themselves in a position to win, if they could execute on D, and then again executed on O.  Admittedly, they could not execute, because frankly they are not very good.  But it is the illustration that if you are not very good, you have to take calculated risks to put yourself in a position to win over a better opponent.  

Also, after last week's doinkfest, I saw a note that said single point kicks after TD are now running at 92%.  If that holds for your kicker, for the year, I think the math says you should go for 2 on every TD.  When single points were going at 96 or 97%, I think it is more of a wash.  But for teams with the 92% kicker, you might want to examine the strategy (or perhaps do a better job of finding a better kicker).

36 It is

In reply to by jds

92.3% this season. Previous years since the change range from 93%-94.3%.

39 If that holds for your…

In reply to by jds

If that holds for your kicker, for the year, I think the math says you should go for 2 on every TD. 

It's tough to say. It's entirely possible that the 2-point conversion percentage right now is biased high because coaches only choose to do it when they think there's a weakness they can exploit. If you try to do it all the time, the conversion percentage might drop.

The other thing is that even if it's "slightly better" in terms of overall points scored, the small number of chances/game really means that it's just not a large effect. Basically, you're just adding variance, which isn't always a good thing even if the result on average is better. You typically only want to add variance late in a game when you know you need it.

Think about it this way. Teams scored 2.7 TDs/game last year, or 43.2 TDs/year. If extra points are 92% and the 2-point conversion is 48%, you're talking about a difference of less than 2 total points on average. So not much. But the actual *results* distribution for extra points is 39.7 points +/- 1.8 points. For the 2-point conversion, it's 41.5 points +/- 4.6 points. Something like ~half the time you'll be worse off.

The whole "go for 2 early" strategy is a huge increase relative to something like that - it's got to be around a 10+% increase in winning percentage (relative, not absolute). But again, that does depend on the fact that it isn't better to trick the opposing coach into being stupid.

41 so youre saying the perfect…

In reply to by jds

so youre saying the perfect illustration of the scenario led to a 28-22 loss? got it, thats my point.  If this brilliant analytics tool worked, you wouldnt need extensive game theory arguments to explain it.  The unknown factor yesterday is if Arians wouldve changed his play calling had the Bucs been up 7 vs 6, and if being up 7 wouldve led to more conservative play calling.  

Also, i'm fine with the approach that you should always go for 2 depending on player matchups.  Tomlin used it effectively a few years back.  But that's not what Siriani did here.  

48 Huh?

Here's an older explanation

Going for 2 didn't cause them to lose. They lost because they were a worse team. And they were losing accordingly. Playing for a tie vs a favorite especially, wasn't what they wanted to do. 

If that taunting penalty doesn't happen they have a chance to win without giving the Bucs more time in overtime. 

50 Are you being this dense on…

Are you being this dense on purpose? How did scoring 8 instead of 7 cause them to lose?

If you want to win the game, you have to go for 2 down 14 when you score a TD, the math is unassailable, as others have noted. 

It's much easier to get the 2, get the stop you need in all scenarios on D whether down 6 or 7, score another TD and kick the XP to win, versus kick the XP, stop, score TD, XP, go to OT, hope to win the toss [50%], and then score another TD [that's 3 TDs now] or win toss and score FG and stop the other team in a 4-down situation needing only a FG to extend, or lose the toss, not give up a TD/FG, or lose the toss, give up a FG and score your third TD to win, or kick FG and need another stop/another score to win. 

Obviously a missed two and a made two = 2 XPs. With the XP % dropping the 2-pt scenario gets even better.

And that's before any of the benefit of the additional information you get after your 2-pt try. 

The team winning by 7/6 is still going to try to score no matter what, unless they can run clock out as TB did, to go back up two scores. Pretending otherwise is arrant nonsense.


54 Let's break this down. The…

Let's break this down.

The strategy fails if:
1. you go for two on the first touchdown and fail, then hold the other team, then get another touchdown and again fail to convert the two-pointer;
2. you go for two on the first touchdown and succeed, then hold the other team, then get another touchdown, then the other team quickly scores after you;
3. you go for two on the first touchdown and succeed, then hold the other team, then get another touchdown and miss the extra point, then lose in overtime;
4. you don't hold the other team scoreless on their next drive.

The strategy succeeds if:
5. you go for two on the first touchdown and fail, then hold the other team, then get another touchdown and succeed to convert the two-pointer, then win in overtime;
6. you go for two on the first touchdown and succeed, then hold the other team, then get another touchdown and convert the extra point, then hold the other team (if they get the ball back).

In the Eagles-Buccaneers game, what happened was #4 - which would have been a failure if you had kicked an extra point instead of going for two - so I don't see how last night is evidence it's a bad strategy.  (It's also not evidence it's a good strategy, but you're arguing it's bad.)

To have evidence it's bad, you would need to find games where a team went for two, failed, then scored and went for two again and failed, OR where a team went for two, succeeded, then scored again, then the other team quickly scored again.  Neither of those scenarios played out here.

56 To have evidence it's bad,…

To have evidence it's bad, you would need to find games where a team went for two, failed, then scored and went for two again and failed, OR where a team went for two, succeeded, then scored again, then the other team quickly scored again.

No...? Nominally you could just look at all of the cases where a team's down 2 scores and goes for it versus the times when a team is down 2 scores and kicks the extra point, and see which team wins more often. Eventually all the mitigating factors would average out.

Of course, like any social science, the big problem is that humans are humans and, y'know, make decisions, so it's all messy and goofy. There haven't been enough situations in NFL history where the team has done this in order to tell.

Again, to be clear, this isn't surprising. Functionally, being down by 2 scores late in the 4th, and scoring a TD, you're already mostly screwed. You've basically got a 15% win chance at that point regardless of going for 2. Going for 2 first probably actually increases your win chance (in absolutes) by like, 3% or so. It'd take hundreds of games in order to tell the difference statistically.  

There definitely is merit to the idea that it's not a good idea to do it because your opponent already has such overwhelming odds to win that you're basically better just trying to trick them into doing something dumb. I mean, it's a little defeatist, but it's not nuts.

57 Oh, I agree with you.  (And,…

Oh, I agree with you.  (And, since you called another poster out for a condescending response (another thing I agree with), I feel I should let you know that your opening to this post comes off as fairly condescending, as well.)

I was more literally responding to the previous post, which was implying this game was evidence it doesn't work.  And to remain literal, my example would be evidence, but as you say, to really judge the strategy you need a large enough sample and the type of analysis you suggest.

164 I feel I should let you know…

I feel I should let you know that your opening to this post comes off as fairly condescending, as well.)

...? How so? The "no....?" there was literally because I wasn't sure what you were implying. Seemed strange that you'd be suggesting such a complicated approach when you could just do a bulk grouping like that. Gotta love internet posting: the only thing that beginning was meant to imply was confusion.

 And to remain literal, my example would be evidence, but as you say

See, that's a dangerous thought, though - a single game can't be evidence for something working or not - not when the effect is that small. In fact, this game could contribute as "evidence" that it doesn't work (inasmuch as any one game can, statistically), because it's not totally nuts that being down 6 caused Arians to be more aggressive than he normally would. I mean, I wouldn't say that, but it's not nuts to say it.

52 Going for 2 down 8

In reply to by Jetspete

The only times it's ever worked in the NFL (where "worked" means that a team went for two down 8 in the second half, then later scored a touchdown with a chance to tie or take the lead) all have asterisks:

1960 Patriots-Oilers: Midway through the 3rd quarter, the Patriots, trailing 20-12, go for 2 and succeed. They score another touchdown later in the quarter and kick the extra point to take a 21-20 lead. (The Oilers then scored the final 17 points of the game.)

1998 49ers-Colts: The 49ers scored a touchdown with 9:58 left to cut the lead to 31-23, but botch the extra point snap, forcing the holder to run. (Officially, this goes down as a 2-point attempt). The 49ers later tied the game on a late TD+2, and won on a last-minute field goal.

2013 Eagles-Lions: A blizzard means that neither team can attempt placekicks of any length. The Eagles went for 2 late in the 3rd quarter trailing 14-6, and eventually won 34-20.

There are no NFL examples of it "failing" (where failure means a team went for 2 down 8 in the second half, didn't convert, then scored a touchdown to go down 2 and then failed on the conversion again.)  Basically, it's a new strategy and teams that are down two touchdowns late don't usually come back.

29 Eagles covered!

Waiting patiently for horns Hurts slander and Wentz love! 

30 TB really tried to let the…

TB really tried to let the Iggles back into this game. I feel like the taunting penalty was crucial there.

59 Yeah, pure speculation on…

Yeah, pure speculation on how the games ends without it, but when you're in late comeback mode, you need everything to go right.  Dumb mental mistakes at that stage are devastating.

61 My preseason expectation…

My preseason expectation that Tagovailoa and Miami would be amongst the most improved QBs/teams this year doesn't look like its going to pan out anytime soon.  Yes, they have a bunch of concentrated injuries, but still.  This is a very unimpressive performance so far this morning against JAX.

62 Flores

Man, they really must be regretting taking that DOG penalty on 4th and 1 along with those two challenges. 

Jacksonville penalty and sack helping them here tho

63 And despite another sack

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

They give up an obvious quick pass for a 1st and allow the game winning FG. 

Disasterclass of not knowing they'd try a quick slant with 5 seconds left and 2 timeouts.

And this guy was (rightfully?) hailed as the pinnacle of the Billy B tree not too long ago. Life comes at ya fast

64 Still can't believe SNF

Geno vs Ben instead of Lamar vs Herbert?

Can someone explain why only late season games can be flexed? 

70 I assume it's that the…

I assume it's that the network that already has  Lamar vs Herbert caliber matchup would rather keep it. It's easier to predict which early-season matchups will be more interesting, at least on paper, so that's the compromise to allow flexing at all.

65 Lions have it on the Bengals…

Lions have it on the Bengals 38, on 3rd and 4.  Jared Goff misses a wide open Hockenson on what would have been a TD.  Lions correctly go for it, Goff locks on a triple covered Hockenson, doesn’t see two other wide open receivers, bails form the pocket, and freakin throws it away…on 4th down.

This is par for the course.  Just a reminder that some people thought that Stafford (who currently sits at #1 in passing DVOA) was only a slight upgrade over Goff.

74 Either way.

Everyone knew that the Rams had a much better team and no one expected the Lions and Goff to be good (well except maybe Detroit who probably regret restructuring his contract now). Rankings are more just a reflection of team strength more so than veteran QBs we've had years to evaluate. 

79 I think you can infer, based…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

I think you can infer, based on no significant personnel changes aside from quarterback, what the reason is for improvement in  team passing DVOA from #19 to #2 is.  Yes it’s only 5 vs 16 games, but I doubt the gap will be that much closer at the end of the season.

66 I don't like to blame refs often

But man, they're pretty bad in todays GB-CHI game.

Missed the Clark penalty that led to an INT

And called a OPI on ESB and thought he went out of bounds despite CLEARLY getting both feet down in the EZ.

84 The Rams have let it fall to…

The Rams have let it fall to 27! And the Chargers just turned it over on downs with 2 minutes left, so that 28 point deficit is likely locked in. The Rams had the ball but opted for short runs to face 4th and 1, but a penalty on the Giants keeps them on the move. It's gonna be close!

76 Finally the Chargers are…

Finally the Chargers are stopped twice on 4th down a 4th and 3 and 4th and 1 and both times the Ravens went 3 and out and kicked a FG.  They even punted early on 4 th and 3. 

78 Good for Staley for going for it

4th and 1 deep in their own territory (19 IIRC) down 24-6 in the third and the Chargers go for it. Very aggressive but unsurprising. I don’t like the call though — why are you throwing on 4th and 1? I guess that’s hindsight bias but I do feel teams too often overcomplicate it in short yardage situations instead of just sneaking it.


Chase catching>Chase blocking>Sewell blcoking>Sewell catching.

Also why did GB just waste a timeout? And another one why?

85 Preserving time in case…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

Preserving time in case Chicago converted, scored, got the onside, and scored quickly again, requiring a last-second comeback? Yes, quite weird.

91 Yeah

I meant GB was wasting my time. Just like Vikings are now calling a TO.

Annnnnnnd MN allows the 4th and 6 conversion anyway. They may need it for a final drive but...

93 Like I said...

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

Pointless timeout usage

96 Had a chance to prove me wrong

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

But they miss the FG.

And Carolina Cowards kneel instead of trying with 1 sec left as if MN has a good chance for a turnover and score on the same play.

98 Ask any coach if they were…

Ask any coach if they were given one untimed down to win a game, would they take it? They pretty much all would, right? But once they've got it in their head that they are playing for overtime they choose to leave that chance on the table. It's loony.

101 And they never get the ball back!

Hmm maybe should've tried something! 

Man playing for (NFL) OT is the worst. So conservative. Someone needs to run the numbers on end of half plays because I highly doubt even half end in the defense scoring. 

87 OMG

Someone needs to slap Mike Zimmer and tell him it’s not the 1970s, you can be aggressive on offense.

94 Ahahahaha

In reply to by KaosTheory

The Panthers just tied it. Got a TD (converted two fourth downs on the drive) and a 2-pointer.

42 seconds left.

88 Wait

Darnold is 13/35???? And they're only down 8?

90 13-35 now, keeping that last…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

13-35 now, keeping that last drive moving.

I was about to post, somehow not only has that game not ended, there's some nonzero chance Carolina still wins it. Not sure if that's a moral victory for the Panthers, that they can win despite complete suckitude by the QB, or just an embarrassment for the Vikings that they haven't put it away.

(Maybe a little of Column A, and a little of Column B.)

92 Damn, what a crazy drive by…

Damn, what a crazy drive by Carolina. From fourth and ten at their own 2 to a TD, with another fourth down conversion mixed in.

EDIT: They were actually at their own 4.

95 Oh my goodness Carolina tied…

Oh my goodness Carolina tied it after all of that. Darnold's numbers on the day were awful but after getting to 4th down at their own 4, he found a few rabbits in that old hat.

The Vikings still have a chance to win it in regulation though.

UPDATE: They didn't.

103 Gutted

I switched this off after they kicked a FG to go down 8 (?) because I figured it was done. Should have hung in there. 

99 Vikings win. NFL overtime…

Vikings win. NFL overtime rules are still a mess. There shouldn't ever be a time where a game can swing because of a coin flip. The college rules have problems of their own but are still a much better alternative.

149 The information advantage…

The information advantage for going second in college shootouts is bigger statistically than the sudden death advantage in NFL OT. 60% to ~52% when I last looked up the rules a couple seasons ago - doubt it's changed majorly.

There's always room to improve OT (frankly, I say let 'em tie), but college rules is a move in the wrong direction, not the right one IMO.

150 Processes

College still gives each team a shot. It's up to coaches to be aggressive or not. 

NFL is mostly determined by who gets the ball first since it's rules lean toward the offense 

151 Hmm, I'm surprised by that…

Hmm, I'm surprised by that. I agree about having ties, but that wouldn't solve the problem for the playoffs.

One simple improvement would be simply to allow teams to get the ball even if they give up a TD on the first drive. At least that reduces the advantage of winning the coin flip. If the game is tied after the second drive it continues, if either team is ahead, it ends.

100 Well the Vikings won in the…

Well the Vikings won in the end, which is probably as it should be given how most of the game went, but it's ludicrous it even got to be that close in the end. They out-threw and out-ran the competition by massive margins and won the turnover battle 1-3, and it still went to overtime.

102 Kyler MVP

Bridgewater throws a pick on 4th. 

Not bad. Aggressive play call. Could've been worse.

104 Baker man...

He's leaning more and more into not getting an extension.

106 Mayfield's DVOA ranking by…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

Mayfield's DVOA ranking by year: 14, 25, 17, and now 15. Aside from the Freddie Kitchens year, he's been consistently middle-of-the-pack, and unless he really shows something going forward it's reasonable to assume that's just who he is (he's already 26 too). It's like the Bears' Cutler Conundrum awhile back, only Mayfield probably isn't quite as good as Cutler was in his prime.

I'd like them to let him walk unless he'll sign for preposterously cheap (and even then...), and take their chances with Bridgewater or the like. Or, well, Aaron Rodgers...

109 Yeah

But man the emotional attachment to their first playoff appearance in forever is gonna be such a thorn in their side. 

They couldn't even do it with Chubb. Gonna be so much harder with the QB (and that TD now).

110 In my view this is one of…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

In my view this is one of the worst positions for an organization to find themselves. If you have a good team, and an ok QB, how do you get a better one without blowing it all up?

Say the Browns don’t extend Mayfield, can they afford to give up enough draft capital to get into a position to draft a QB? Even then they can’t guarantee that any rookie will definitely be better than Mayfield is now or over the next few years. Plus how do you hold together the core of your good team while waiting on a rookie developing?

Alternatively they have to either trade for a better QB, if they can find one at a price they are willing to afford, or spend a large portion of their salary cap on a free agent. 

112 Yep

You got it all summed up.

Ironically he has two pass TDs since my post but nonetheless...

It'll be tough decision. All they can hope for is that he just puts it altogether, consistently, and pay him at years end at this point. 

105 Rams/Giants

A few thoughts:

  • I doubt we will see much coverage of this game here it went pretty much to form.
  • LA put their backup QB in at the start of the fourth quarter. He promptly threw a pick on his first throw and later ran into a DT on a read option. LA are screwed if Stafford goes down injured at any point in the season.
  • The NYG looked really poor with the ball. Unless there’s some miraculous turn around I can see them having to clear house at the end of the season.

107 Another wasted timeout!

This time by Dallas.

Sorry for flooding your timeline.


108 I didn't think the Cardinals…

I didn't think the Cardinals would be one of the best teams this year but it's looking more and more like that is the case.

111 Cleveland O:

Being aggressive at the end of the half! Maybe a tad too much imo but I love not spiking it and doing a quick out there. 

And they're rewarded with a TD! Fantastic job at not just kneeling into halftime! 

Good job! Love to see it. THAT'S why teams shouldn't be afraid in such situations *cough* Carolina *cough*

I can't tell you how happy I am right now. 

113 Aggression!

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

So you love the end of the half in NE? Belichick kneels out the last 1:30, and McCarthy calls a TO in such a way so that Belichick can kneel out safely, instead of forcing them to run a 4th down play with 10s left.

114 Looking at the play by play

In reply to by TGT

  • (0:00 - 2nd) END QUARTER 2

  • 3rd & 11 at NE 19

    (0:08 - 2nd) M.Jones kneels to NE 17 for -2 yards

  • (0:08 - 2nd) Timeout #3 by DAL at 00:08.

  • 2nd & 9 at NE 21

    (0:47 - 2nd) M.Jones kneels to NE 19 for -2 yards

  • 1st & 10 at NE 20

    (1:30 - 2nd) D.Harris left guard to NE 21 for 1 yard (O.Odighizuwa)

It seems like it was pointless? Call it right as it's about to expire too? Bill looking mighty exposed though just giving up. At least run some giveup run plays if you're that scared. 

Yeah that was silly on Mike. 

115 Cards dominate Browns.

They even gave up a Hail Mary before the half and it wasn't even a close game.

Cards defense impressed me.

Baker Mayfield is the definition of replacement level.  I don't see why Cleveland would give him a 2nd contract.  He's just not good.


116 Hmm, I was just wondering if…

Hmm, I was just wondering if the Cowboys should've gone for it on 4th and 1 at the edge of FG range down 1, having all 3 timeouts left - and then they kicked the FG and missed it. Same difference other than spotting NE 7 more yards of field position (and, ya know, having no chance at getting closer/icing it).

118 Wooooooooooooooow

That was an interesting play call by the Pats.

Like they went EMPTY? Not even a threat of a run in type of end around? I get being aggressive but geez


119 Mike McCarty

4th and 1 make it, run out clock and kick shorter field goal.  But NO!  Its Mike how do I screw this game up McCarthy going for 51 yard FG.  Kick is missed, but if made NE gets ball with over 2:30 left and 3 timeouts to score on flip side.


And now NE throws a pick 6, I guess this was the plan all along.

120 Re: Cowboys-Patriots: Um…

Re: Cowboys-Patriots: Um excuse me what.

I was thinking the only quibble with the pick-six is that they scored too quickly - but NE might have scored too quickly there lollll.

That game went from stultifying to amazing in a hurry.

121 Quite a pair of plays there…

Quite a pair of plays there for Diggs.

The two-point conversions going the way they did is huge for the Pats. I still think Dallas has a great chance to win this one in regulation.

123 Cowboys defense.

They are improved from the dumpster fire of last year, but they just blew this game.

Pats go up 3.


125 And now NE answers with 75…

And now NE answers with 75 yard pass.  McCarthy must again reach into bag of tricks, how do I lose now?

126 Cowboys-Pats

This game is a really confusing roller coaster of emotions for me. I have to root against the Pats as a Bills fan, but it’s always fun to watch the Cowboys underachieve. Both teams seem determined to give the win to the other. What do I do?

127 What's kind of weird is that…

What's kind of weird is that neither of those scores was quite as big they might seem. NE was likely going to have to punt and then probably loses to a FG. The pick-six forced them to be more aggressive. The NE TD happened so fast that Dallas is left with tons of time to respond, which made it a much better outcome than a long, slow TD drive.

130 McCarthy.

Way too conservative with both FG attempts.

I think you go for both and trust the QB on 4th & 1.

136 What? You definitely kick…

In reply to by DIVISION

What? You definitely kick the second of those. The odds you end up scoring a TD even if you convert are not good. There were 24 seconds left. There's no question you kick.

131 Wait

Why wouldn't Dallas let the clock go down to 1 there? You don't have enough timeouts left if you miss. You just give them a chance.

I guess they did kneel last time but sitll...

137 Because McCarthy reached…

In reply to by ImNewAroundThe…

Because McCarthy reached into his bag of tricks and figured out a way to lose even with made FG.  Belichick lost his testicles a few years ago so NE used a wimpy run and accepted OT.

141 Patriots

at least ran a play instead of kneeling this time. 

But they themselves should've call a TO at 1 sec left since they had one more I believe 

132 If you don’t care…

Both Dallas and New England are teams that I, uh, do not support. With no rooting interest, the last five minutes have been very entertaining!  

152 typical

I guess your working in the psychological field as you phrased it once, gives you insight into determining people's ages by astute analysis of their posts on a football thread.  Let me assure you: (1) I am well past 40--my username was chosen a long time ago; (2) I am, indeed, a curmudgeon.

I'm not so sure that a summer internship mostly consisting of photocopying and filing papers in a counseling office counts as 'working in the psychological field,' but whatever you say...

133 Man, the lack of aggression…

Man, the lack of aggression from Belichick there. Especially disappointing since NE will be significant underdogs in OT.

138 Lol, dude. Dallas is…

In reply to by DIVISION

Lol, dude. Dallas is dominating this game statistically and has been much better through the whole season. Dallas are the better team.

139 Overtime periods are so…

Overtime periods are so often boring even after a dramatic last few minutes of regulation. This game is an example.

142 Belichick.

So many chances to close out this game in regulation, but couldn't get it done.

Not impressed with Dallas.  Their soft schedule will allow them to roll until they see the Cards later on this year.