Tag Archives: Football

Dumb NFL Coach of the Week: Divisional Round

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(similar to this but not even close to the same)

WINNER: JASON GARRETT!

Not going to lie, it was a CLOSE decision. Andy Reid was up to his usual tricks and screwed up the clock enough at the end of the  game where he didn’t have any timeouts and there was zero sense of urgency. Could have easily been him this week but he comes in third. NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at Philadelphia Eagles

Also could have been old friend Bill O’Brien! His decision to kick a field goal to stay down 17-16 instead of going for a TD when he has that inept offense deep in the red area was the biggest loser decision ever. He of all people should know that you cannot go into Foxboro and expect to win by kicking field goals in the redzone. It’s just not an option. The second he did that I said, “well that’s dumb, his offense will never be that close again.” Sure enough, they never got in the red area for the rest of the game. Gotta play to win there Bill.

And now to our winner, Jason Garrett. Garrett having his offense spike the ball on First down, with a time out, at the GB 40 yard line with 50 seconds left was the dumbest move of the year. Not only did it leave Rodgers with too much time after kicking the field goal but it took away a down they needed to get the next first down! The play there was for Garrett to take his time out and have 50 seconds to get 5 yards to kick a field goal. 50 seconds is a lot of time to manage. No reason to waste a down with 50 seconds left and you still have a timeout on the edge of Field Goal range! It was maddening. Absolutely the worst coached team this weekend was Dallas. They have a stellar team but with that coach, they will never win anything.

Twitter @fozberry64

Obligatory NFL Divisonal Round picks column

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(Let’s hope this year’s Packers v Cowboys game is as entertaining as the one from 2015)

 

New England over Houston 34-10: Easiest money for the weekend. Patriots not only win easily at home, they probably cover a historically large spread too against the worst team to ever win a playoff game. Make it 7 straight AFC title games for Brady and the Patriots.

 

Kansas City over Pittsburgh 24-18: Kansas City finally gets over their home playoff hump and keeps Pittsburgh at bay. Their defense/special teams are just too opportunistic. I expect this to be visible as Big Ben has struggled away from Heinz Field this year. Costly turnovers haunt the Steelers in this one as Smith game manages his way to another title game.

 

Atlanta over Seattle 35-31: The team that kicks the field goal always loses. This time, it’s Seattle. Their offense just won’t be able to keep up and overcome the defensive loss of Earl Thomas. Ryan will finally get over the hump and win a game he’s supposed to at home in the playoffs.  Quinn and Shanahan should have a great gameplan in place for this one and barring a Dan Quinn game mismanagement, Atlanta will move on.

 

Dallas over Green Bay 31-30: Dalla is going to have to put up points and lots of them to win this one. Green Bay is hot but without Jordy, Rodgers has classically struggled. This is a little factor but I’m going to go out on a limb and say Mike Mccarthy has his Grady Little moment in this one. He will leave that one point on the board somewhere whether it’s an ill advised fourth down attempt or bad play calling deep in his own end. He will be the goat in this one as Dallas survives and advances.

Follow me on twitter: @fozberry64

NFL Divisional Round WRs

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Things to consider when rostering WRs in your million dollar lineups for the divisional round

  1. Players the target monster is coming for- A few good low priced options this week that pivot off the the many studs still remaining. I’m looking right at Cole Beasley and Taylor Gabriel. First on Beasley. The Packers tipped their hand last week vs the Giants on how they want to defend the big play WR. They were constantly doubling Odell Beckham with a corner up and a safety over the top, meaning the giants had to go to their second and third options. Those options on Dallas are much more effective than Shepard and Cruz. I expect the Packers to keep this tactic and hope their thin secondary can cover Beasley, the Cowboys slot receiver. GB has struggled at this all year. Also, Dallas is likely to be playing from behind and may not be as patient with the run game if they go down early. Look for Beasley to see a lot of action this week.
  2. Taylor Gabriel- Kind of similar to the Beasley factor but with a twist. Sherman will likely be shadowing Julio as he did at the end of the last matchup between these two teams early on in the year. Gabriel is an interesting tourney play as he may not be the most lucrative option, but at home, in the dome, with no Earl Thomas on the back end for Seattle to keep everything organized, Gabriel could be primed for a big day and see more of the ball than usual. Again, this game looks like a track meet from my perspective so get some explosive exposure on the Falcons side of things.
  3. Davante Adams- Jordy has just been ruled out. Adams has been Rodgers second go to guy (much to the chagrin of Randall Cobb owners this year like myself). Adams should get some time with the target monster this week in Nelson’s absence. GB has little to no run game and the way to attack Dallas is through the air. Proceed with caution though. Mike Mccarthy is always liable to throw the dampest of wet blankets on your fantasy plans by either letting the Geronimo Allisons or Jeff Janis'(Jani?) of the world steal TDs for no reason.
  4. Deep (threat) Sleeper option-Jermaine Kearse is a good low price option to get some talented exposure on an offense that should need to score a lot and has a decent matchup.
  5. The ‘No Duh’ option- Antonio Brown- as we saw last week. Guy can take it the distance no matter where he catches the ball. Need a little exposure of the best WR in the NFL right now. KC pass defense be damned, AB is as matchup proof as anyone.
  6. The “double dip” player of the week- Tyreek Hill- Not only should the target monster be on him this week but low temps in windy KC mean low punts for him to return. Anything kicked at him this week will be returnable due to the coverage team not having ample time to get down the field because of the low hang times. Hill is a huge double dip candidate and if you’re in a large GPP, I love the Hill, KC D double dip potential. Pittsburgh and Brown is in play for that reason as well. I’m almost willing to guarantee that at least one of these scenarios plays out

 

Follow me on Twitter: @fozberry64

NFL Divisional Round DFS RBs

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Running Back notes to consider when creating your million dollar lineups this weekend

  1. Le’veon Bell is a generational talent- Not breaking news but it’s worth saying again and again. Bell has made a mockery of the competition when he has been on the field. The stats are very much in his favor as he always surpases 150 yard from scrimmage but your eyes can back up these stats. He is the most patient back in the league. Bell never forces his carries into the pile. He waits and waits and waits until he has a crease and explodes through it. He’s the anti-Trent Richardson. He’s what Laurence Moroney always wanted to be with his dancing until the hole opens up. Difference is, Bell has vision that his unique only to him. Obviously Bell is chalky and his ownership will be super high but you need to have exposure. Road teams always get this thing in their head where they feel they need to run, especially with the cold weather forecast for Kansas City. Expect Bell to have a day.
  2. Blount Week-  Bell’s former team mate and joy ride buddy Legarrette Blount has gameflow going for him this week as a 16.5 point favorite over Houston. As I wrote yesterday, look for him to get numerous red zone and goal line carries early and then clock killing carries late in a cold Foxboro Saturday night.
  3. Hard to find- The rest of the slate is tough to call. Gameflow will not be favoring Seattle as I expect them to be in a track meet in the Georgia Dome. Freeman and Coleman are also a tough call (Freeman>Coleman). Atlanta will look to use their backs in the passing game so target them for your mid to low priced options. Rest of the slate is brutal. Elliot could be a nice contrarian play against GBs top run defense. Game flow will hurt Elliot if the game goes like I think it will. Hard to roster Ware/West with the given injury concerns to Ware combined with a Pittsburgh front that has been playing very well.

2017 Divisional Round DFS preview: QBs

This column will focus less on the sabermetrics of the football games and more about tangible “football” things you can see with your own two eyes. Coaching for nearly a decade at the high school level has given me perspective other DFS writers may overlook in the interest of statistics. Stats are useful but should not be relied upon. Games are played and coached by humans and not computers. This and following article will give you a look at the game that can sometimes be unquantifiable. 

 

QBs to Target:

This slate only offers us 8 QBs to choose from. Though a small slate, there is tons of value for guys that you may otherwise overlook based on the matchup. Here’s who to go with:

MATT RYAN: Ryan faces a Seattle defense that is traveling across the country on a short week. Matt Ryan at home has been a huge target for DFS players throughout his career even if the matchup dictates otherwise. The Seahawks have the name value going for them but have been extremely mediocre down the stretch since losing Earl Thomas. They have gone .500 without Thomas. They have benefitted from an easy schedule since the injury having only played one team with a winning record since the injury. Expect a lot of short passes to either backs or whomever is at the slot WR this week. This is where the Seahawks can be hurt the most. The only reason to be off him would be his past playoff performance. Different coaches this time around should help. Ryan at home, vs a banged up Seattle team traveling on a short week makes him my top QB.

 

AARON RODGERS:  Shouldn’t need to convince anyone of this. Anyone with eyes knows he is playing lights out right now. The Packers frustrate me more than any other team because of their lack of offensive diversity but Rodgers is McCarthy proof it looks like. Dallas strikes me as similar to the Giants team Rodgers just beat. “Young” defense still looking to prove itself that may keep hold down GB for a quarter before Rodgers starts shredding them. Not having Jordy will hurt and you always have to worry about McCarthy doing something but Rodgers should be good to go vs a relatively inexperienced defense.

Pivots: ALEX SMITH, DAK (TOURNEYS)

 

AVOID AT ALL COSTS: BEN ROETHLISBERGER: Ben stats got super inflated last week with AB taking two short, easily defendable passes, for long  scores. Anyone who watched knows Miami did not show up/had a terrible plan for attacking the Pittsburgh offense. Ben benefitted from very poor secondary play and poor schemes last week. KC will be stingier and better coached at home coming off a bye week in freezing conditions.

 

OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER:

  • GB offensive line play: contrary to what the stats might say for the Giants D last week, Rodgers was very comfortable vs that highly touted DL save for less than a handful of plays. NYG was credited for 5 sacks. 2 came from the secondary on well designed plays where they came free. NYG also only hit Rodgers 5 times, all coming on those sacks.  Expect even better play from the GB OL vs a much less talented Dallas front 7.
  • Patriots D coordinator Matt Patricia has shown a tendency to be aggressive against non mobile QBs this year. Osweiler should be under fire the entire game. Houston has struggled mightily on the OL this year and the New England athletic front should give them tons of issues in a game where they will be pass protecting for the majority of the game.

Forgotten Cult Heroes: Mike Cloud

Mike Cloud, Patriot legend…for three games in 2003. I was watching the 2003 Pats Superbowl DVD recently in order to forget about the end to this patriots season. While watching the goal line stand in Indy and the 3 Law INTs of Manning in the AFCCG was awesome, one thing stuck out, Mike Cloud. Mike Cloud was a Cult hero for 3 weeks during this season. He only rushed for 118 yards over 5 appearances for the Pats but scored 5 TDs during that time. Scored 2 vs the Titans while rushing for 73 yards on 7 carries. That was his coming out party. The former BC all american RB also rushed for 2 Tds vs Indy that year too. This fill in back for Injured Antwan Smith and Kevin Faulk was a shooting star that captivated New England for a month and then poof was gone in a flash. Here’s to you Cult Hero Mike Cloud

Comment any Boston Cult Heroes of the last decade or hit me on Twitter: @fozberry64

Foz

Donovan Left of 23 Man Roster for USMNT

I don’t have a strong opinion either way about Landon Donovan. He acts in some ways that make him hard to like but there is no doubt he is a US Soccer Legend, not that there are many to begin with. 

Klinsmann made it really clear he thought of Donovan as a forward and not a midfielder when choosing his team. Altidore and Dempsey were locks to make the team. Altidore doesn’t score for Sunderland but he does for the US. Aron Johannsson and Chris Wondolowski rounded out the rest of the forwards. Both are coming off terrific club campaigns and are most likely hungry to show the world what they can do. Not at all upset with the players up front for the US. 

Donovan took a sabbatical from soccer a year ago much to the chagrin of the new coach Klinsmann and the rest of the US Soccer Federation. I went to a brunch with the New England Revolution last March and the topic of Donovan was brought up to the head of US Soccer Sunil Galati. He seemed very disappointed that Donovan was on the sabbatical. Both camps were at odds with one another and that’s not the best way to win over a new coach let alone a legend of the game in Klinsmann.

I don’t have a problem with the selection but the US Soccer Fed has opened themselves up for drastic criticism if and when the US go out in the group stage. The media now has their story to run. They will claim Donovan would have saved the day and put us into the round of 16 when in reality, the US were going to be filthy lucky to get out of the group stage with Donovan in the lineup. Two World Soccer powers like Germany and Portugal would be a tall enough task but throw in Ghana who have eliminated the US from the previous two world cups and that’s a recipe for disaster.

Donovan may have brought some veteran calm to the squad which may have helped them a little, but vs Ronaldo and a very very talented German squad, that influence would have been minuscule.

Foz