Dallas, Rex and more…
Will the Dallas Cowboys win out? Is Rex a gone guy? And what about the Broncos as far as the playoffs are concerned?
All.. and lots more… in this week’s roundtable… so pull up a chair…
1) The game is over and the Giants have now defeated the Cowboys twice which are the only blemishes on their otherwise perfect record in 2016. The Cowboys move on to what is most likely a 1st week bye in the playoffs. While the 9-4 Giants host the NFC North 1st place the 9-4 Detroit Lions. A win versus Lions would solidify the Giants hold on the 1st wild and a win for the Lions would obviously solidify their hold on 1st in the North card as well as a bye in the 1st week of the playoffs.
Who do you pick to win this game and why?
Chad: I will the Giants with a wave of momentum after beating the Cowboys for a second time against a beat up Matt Stafford.
The Lions have a lot of wins in very close games. They also have a couple losses in very close games. Matthew Stafford is hurt now with ligament damage to his throwing hand. That’ll take a big hit to their offense in my opinion and I think NYG take this game. They beat Dallas two times now, Detroit should be an easier match-up for them. NYG 30 Detroit 23
David: The Giants are in the Cowboys head, no doubt about it. The problem is, the rest of the wins are either luck or a puff of smoke and mirrors. I wish I lived in Vegas, so I could drop cash on who they are playing.
The problem is, I trust Jim Caldwell about as much as I could throw the Silverdome. I do trust Stafford more than I do Eli in the regular season, so I’ll go there.
Earl: I’m going with the Giants at home against the Lions.
For one, we might have some sort of rain/snow situation on Sunday; combine the elements with the fact that the Lions aren’t that good away from the dome and I have to give the edge to the Giants. I should also add that Matthew Stafford looked a bit banged up this past Sunday. If he’s not at 100 percent then the Giants advantage only grows bigger.
2) The Pittsburgh Steelers beat The Buffalo Bills in a game where the 27-20 score indicates a closer game than it really was. The Steelers won despite QB Ben Roethslisberger who had a lackluster performance that was peppered with 3 INTs… RB Le’Veon Bell scored three times and set a franchise record with 236 yards rushing.
Buffalo’s loss all but eliminates them from even sniffing the playoffs and will probably extend the present NFL longest active playoff drought to 17 years.
How soon before HC Rex Ryan gets the axe or to put it another way… is there any way he doesn’t get fired?
Chad: No, It’s time for Rex to go.
The experiment in Buffalo failed and they will once again have to clean house.
Dan: I think that he’ll get the axe after the season. In my opinion, since they’re already out of the playoffs, there isn’t really too much of a point to firing him with three games left. Just let him finish out the three games and cut ties. In all reality, if the team looks as bad as they did on offense against Pittsburgh, not only will Tyrod Taylor be out of a starting QB job, Rex Ryan won’t be coaching anymore for Buffalo either.
Only shot, and it’s a long shot, that Rex Ryan won’t get fired is if they win their last three games in DOMINATING fashion. But that’s a big if. And he could very likely still get canned.
David: I’d give Rex one more year. I don’t think Rex is a championship HC, but the Jets proved that he gets more out of crappy talent than most.
I think I’d like to see him in Tennessee next. Not as a head coach, but as a DC. I do think he needs to start Jones this week though.
Earl: I wish the Bills would give Rex a little more time but that isn’t how the game is played these days. Rex is going to get fired. The Bills aren’t going to make the playoffs, their defense which was a strength when Rex was hired is looking sloppier by the week, and, Tyrod Taylor is a solid QB but not a good enough one to get the Bills over the hump.
Add all of that up and it equals out to Rex spending some time on the unemployment line while he waits for someone to hire him as a defensive coordinator.
3) How shocked are you at the Green Bay Packers kicking the Seattle Seahawks butt this past Sunday? Is Seattle really just a pretender to the NFL’s championship and their somewhat glossy 8-4-1 is more an indication that they are simply lucky to play in a weak NFC West?
Chad: I think it’s more an indication of how the cold and the elements can effect a team that is not use to it in Seattle. But, they are lucky to be in the NFC West this season where they can host a first round playoff game.
Dan: While I am shocked, I’m not completely shocked.
Seattle didn’t look good on offense and the Packers’ secondary got some great help from Randall that they desperately needed. They grabbed five INTs from Wilson and looked like a completely different team on defense. Aaron Rodgers looks like his normal self and the team was getting great pressure on an otherwise sound offensive line. They were also without Earl Thomas, but, it was still an impressive win for Green Bay.
I don’t think Seattle is a pretender, but, they do have question marks that have been bothering them all season. I don’t think they’re overrated, but, I do think the Packers are showing that they are a dangerous team like everybody thought heading into the season.
David: Considering I picked Dak to start over Aaron? Not at all. I’m tired of hearing all the love about Seattle. The Lucky team is the Colts, by the way. I do think Seattle is a threat, but, I do wonder how long they have to go as a title team.
Earl: The Packers are not a bad team. They have had some injuries but at Lambeau, you would be hard pressed to pick against them.
I will say the shocker is how bad the Seahawks offense was in the game. Russell Wilson was an interception machine in one ugly performance. The Seahawks are clearly the class of their division and the division has underperformed this season, but, I won’t read too much into one ugly loss.
4) Denver’s loss to Tennessee didn’t drop them out of the playoff picture but it didn’t do them any favors either as they now are looking at closing out the season against New England, Kansas City and Oakland.
Can Denver make the playoffs and have a shot at defending their title? Why?
Chad: I think they can based on the remaining schedules and weakness from 6 on down in the AFC. Denver may only need to eke out 1 win in the bunch to get the spot.
Tannehill is hurt, The Ravens/Steelers still have to play each other, Titans/Texans/Colts is a giant mess. Denver can probably get in by default.
Dan: I think they still can sneak into the playoff picture as a Wild Card team. They have to win 2 out of 3 to really secure a spot since KC and Oakland are both in. That leaves one WC spot to be split between Pittsburgh/Baltimore loser and a possible AFC South team who have a chance to sneak in. I don’t think Denver will be able to complete two wins in tough match-ups after two straight losses. They have New England next week, which is a L. Then they have KC which is a toss-up and Oakland which is another toss-up. With a loss to NE, they’d have to sweep KC and Oakland.
I see them finishing 1-2 and missing the post-season by a game.
David: Comes down to that KC game. They close out with 2 in the division and 3 in the conference. That’s what you want when looking at tie-breakers. I think they have a chance, just like half the conference does.
Earl: Denver needed to keep pace with Kansas City and Oakland and losing to Tennessee hurts them. Their final three games are tough, but, if, they beat KC and/or Oakland they would make the playoffs so losing to Tennessee is a step back but it’s not a knockout punch.
5) The Dallas Cowboys close the season versus the Eagles, Lions and Buccaneers. Can they sweep or do you see a loss or two more waiting for the Cowboys? Whatever your predicted scenario: Why?
Chad: They win against the Bucs and Lions at home and lose to the Eagles on the road on week 17 because they will start resting guys as there will be nothing left to play for.
Dan: Yes, they can. Don’t let the SNF game fool you. The Cowboys are dangerous on offense and they were showing an abundance of aggression on defense last night. A costly interception by Dak led to a Odell Beckham touchdown which ended up winning the game for NYG. Zeke still had over 100 yards rushing, Dak didn’t really have a terrible game, and, they had a very good defensive performance with multiple fumbles and a plethora of pressure on Eli Manning.
Philly will be a close game since it’s a divisional opponent, but, they’ve been falling as of late. Dallas grabs that win. Like I said about Detroit in question 1, it shouldn’t be a tough match-up for Dallas and they’ll take that game.
Tampa is the game that’s a question mark to me. Do you sit your starters for “rest” with a first week bye in the playoffs, or do you play them and let them take a week bye? Me, personally, I don’t believe in sitting/resting players. It throws them off. If they sit their starters, I think they’ll lose. If, they start them, like they should, they win.
David: The Eagles have shut it down for the year. Even hate won’t get them there. The Lions are a threat, but the defensive line won’t get to Dak. I do think that gets them the 1 seed, and, we see Romo for the finale rest game with Tampa, who will be fighting for the wild card.
Earl: I predict they will go 2-1 down the stretch. Beating the Eagles and Lions and losing to the Buccaneers. Tampa is going to need that win in Week 17 more than the Cowboys will, and I can see the Cowboys pulling their big names early in that game since they should have nothing to play for.
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