"You stats shouldn't play so rough. Somebody's gonna start crying."
Some teams bark all day, little doggy. And some teams bite.
Week 15 was supposed to be an easy caper for the playoff-bound teams in the NFL. Minnesota, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Indianapolis were all looking to get in, do their job, and get out--unscathed and without too much gun play. Only two of these teams (Philly and Indy) actually escaped with a win.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to Shallow Thoughts & Nearsighted Observations. I am writing this lead-in on Black Monday, and I'm still not in a very good mood, as you can imagine. I'm going to try to make the best of it, and drop a good column despite the bad feelings. We'll see, because I still haven't watched this infuriating game a second time yet. No guarantees. For now, let's get on with it. Ready..... BEGIN!!!!
It's times like these that drive Broncos fans to drink.
And to Plato. And Bruce Lee. And Bon Jovi.
One had a penchant for philosophy. Another for martial arts. And the last for hairspray.
But what do the three of these guys have in common?
With 15 sacks already to his credit, Elvis Dumervil is within reach of setting an NFL record for sacks in a single season. The record is currently held by Michael Strahan, who reached 22.5 sacks in 2001, the highest total since the stat was first recorded. With only 3 games left, Doom is in a race with time as well as against the offensive linemen who stand between him and his goal. He's also one sack behind Simon Fletcher for the Broncos team record.
"What did you say, Stats Champion? I'll beat you like a dog, a dog, you fool!" --Clubber Lang
I pity the fool that believes in league parity.
Let's be honest. Outside of a few games, Week 14 was a complete bore. The winning teams won by an average of 15 points. While the storyline of the two undefeated teams continued to be compelling, most of the games were as forgettable as a JaMarcus Russell seam pass or a Jay Cutler trip to the red zone. Roger Goodell should have donated some of his TV revenues back to charity. At least fans would have felt better about the six hours of their lives they won't be getting back.
However, we did learn something about the Denver Broncos. They stand more than a puncher's chance in the playoffs.
Welcome to another round of The Stats That Don't Lie, your statistical Mister T. These are the stats that hit below the belt. They are the stats that never have to go to the judges. In short, they beat you like a dog, fool. As always they are Turnovers, Field Position, Time of Possession, and 3rd-Down Efficiency.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to another edition of Shallow Thoughts & Nearsighted Observations. Christmas is coming - and I, for one, am hoping for a much more joyous holiday season than I experienced last December. All I got for Christmas last year was the Broncos' historic collapse, and all I had to give was the one scenario that could possibly be worse than the season-ending Chargers game (it involved hypothetically cutting an apple, slipping, and stabbing myself in the groin WHILE watching that game).
I'm not much for moral victories, but today in Donny Deutschland, I will talk about why I feel better about Sunday's loss than I have about any Broncos loss in years. There's no time to waste, so let's not waste any time. Out of the echo chamber, and into the fire, y'all. Ready..... BEGIN!!!
Divisional opponents inspire hate. And mockery. So let round two of the Raiders' Limericks begin!.
Here are five that I created. Please feel free to make up your own. And Raiders' fans, please participate if you've passed the 8th grade or aren't currently wearing an orange jacket and carrying a garbage sack.
At the end of the season, I'll do a post with the top-10 limericks from all the division opponents to vote on, so please rec the limericks that you like the most.
These five should help you get the hang of it (if you have an extra syllable or two here or there, who cares):
Yesterday, Josh McDaniels made one of his most interesting coaching decisions before the bodies even began hitting the turf of Lucas Oil Stadium.
He deferred the kickoff.
Although this decision is not controversial at the college level (Urban Meyer and many other coaches always defer), apparently it causes quite a stir when done by an NFL head coach. As Mike Klis wrote today in the Denver Post:
The officials gathered the respective captains for a coin toss to see who would get the ball first. The Broncos called heads. It came up heads. What a break. The great Manning would have to wait . . .
What's that? McDaniels deferred. McDaniels' research had shown that the team that kicks off at the start usually has the final possession of the first half, and then gets the ball again to start the second half.
Score at the end of one half, score at the beginning of the next. Double-up the points while Manning waits on his sideline.
But even at its best, such decision would have to be considered counterintuitive.
The Broncos are like a bomb, baby, come and get it on.
What happens if the Broncos actually pull a miracle and beat the Colts tomorrow? How will they have done it? Is it actually possible?
Not only is it possible, I can already tell you what the game will look like. As the lead singer for the band Def Depard (one of the finest poets of his generation) would say,"Red light, yellow light, green-a-light go."
Since 2005, the Indianapolis Colts have finished 55-16, including the playoffs and Super Bowl season of 2006. That means the Colts have won 77% of their games. That's an insane number of wins in a 4-year stretch. If it helps you bend your mind around just how good this is, just imagine the Raiders losing percentage over the last 4 years and think about the exact opposite. The Colts have been as good as the Raiders have been useless.
There's nothing quite like back-to-back wins to put a shine into the work in the film room. The glow of the past two wins hasn't faded at all, but the upcoming contest against the Indianapolis Colts is starting to loom large. Before we get into our matchups and needs against the next foe, let's take some time to look back over what we've accomplished. Special teams, the nose tackle position and even raiderology are on today's menu. Let the feasting begin!