2019 Dynasty/Fantasy Football Analysis: Week 10 – Raiders 26, Chargers 24
I love overreaction to a football win/loss that just happened. With a minute left in this game, the Raiders just having botched an extra point to hold a two-point lead instead of a three-point lead…and thus Philip Rivers was left with a minute+ to get into field goal range and walk away with a victory – you almost knew it was going to happen, a last second LAC FG…but it didn’t. The Raiders defense stepped up on the final drive and cut off the Chargers and held on for the victory.
Had a Raiders’ defender slipped on the last play and allowed a big play, or some ticky-tack P.I. was called…anything could have set up a Chargers victory – and then the entire next 24-48 hours would be crickets about the Raiders and all talk on how old Philip Rivers is so big in big moments and the Chargers were the new favorites in the AFC West. We were one crazy play away from an entire 180 of analysis past-game – instead we have people apologizing for being wrong about the Raiders and going silent on the Chargers. It’s really about as dumb as you can get, in the analysis business…but only 100% of them do it and pump into our brains all week.
Not only is there only overreaction as primary analysis, then you have the storylines the football media chooses to pursue or not based upon their feelings…and then that is pumped into our brains, or it is withheld from us so we don’t consider it/get whipped up by it. It’s what the media does in politics…as we saw last week…as a major outlet squashed a major Jeffrey Epstein story for political and financial reasons – all the while it allowed people/youth to continue to be abused for the whims of the powerful. We’re the consumer getting defrauded…being manipulated – and we don’t really realize it. Less dire/sickening -- it is happening so obviously in football coverage we don’t fully see it because ‘why would they lie about football stuff?’
It’s not that they outright lie, per se…it’s that they overreact and are all emotional and put in little deep-study effort as they just run with that cashing checks and pumping out click-bait. It’s really disgusting the longer I watch all of this unfold in the industry. I already gave the example from this game – I mean, are we really believing that NOW the Raiders are clearly better than the Chargers (or vice-versa, had the game gone the other way)? Two teams with .500-ish records played a TNF game that was a coin flip outcome – and now THEY celebrate the Raiders, and issue apologies for overlooking them while THEY turn a cold shoulder to THEIR beloved Chargers? I don’t care that THEY all get it wrong, but they never look at the bigger picture or have some moderation in reaction and look for different angles of the story.
What we should be talking about from this but won’t…
Can we discuss how Philip Rivers is time and again leading a disappointing outcome and disappointing team – is there a team that has more ‘disappointments’ over the last decade than the Chargers, and yet Rivers is never in question. How does he never take blame/media shaming for anything? Derek Carr was considered great, at first, then he wasn’t and wasn’t the Raiders’ future…and now he’s OK again for the masses for now…but Rivers always disappoints and never gets mocked for it. I don’t understand why every NFL QB gets tarred and feathered at the first sign of trouble…except Rivers. The hive mind has just decided ‘it is so’, so they don’t bother to report on it.
What we should also be talking about – everyone in football analysis was 100% AGAIN on analyzing something…anyone want to re-look at the Khalil Mack trade and tell me which team is in better shape now and for the future between the Bears and Raiders? The two biggest deals of the last two seasons, everyone was wrong on…Mack to Chicago, and OBJ to Cleveland. Where are the news reports that start with the headline – “All NFL analysts suck at their job, and here’s two reasons (our reactions to the two trades) why…”
Every reaction in football is an overreaction and typically the wrong reaction…not just 51% of the time…but like 80%+. How can a group of experts be so wrong so often…and never admit or soul search it or correct it the following weeks/months? Why should they…they’ll just go silent on their constant errors and glom onto the next hot thing until they smother the flame out on that and then go silent, and then onto the next hot thing…wash-rinse-repeat.
Philip Rivers tried to complete as many passes to Raiders safety Erik Harris (4 picks, 2 official) as he did to Mike Williams and Austin Ekeler combined (4)…and, yet, the Chargers STILL could/should have won this game in the end. They didn’t. The Chargers are still a .500-ish team, as are the Raiders – that’s my takeaway. Rivers is still more letdown than not, and Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock should be top 3 candidates for Coach and GM of the Year, and not one single person from me to anyone in football saw it coming. And Anthony Lynn and whoever runs the Chargers…not winning any awards.
This loss by LAC was a HUGE help for Kansas City. The Chiefs have two games left with LAC, but now a 2.0 game lead over them…and can effectively kill them off Week 11 on MNF. Assuming they lose to KC next week, the Chargers will fall to 4-7 and end up with about 6 wins, +/-, this season.
I thought Oakland was going to win this game, not because I’m a genius…I just thought most everything favored the Raiders on paper, plus homefield, and the public so conned into the Chargers. It was an anti-public play to a degree. The Chargers still could/should have won and then I’m not so smart. The win for the Raiders is HUUUGE because they have CIN and at NYJ the next two weeks…Oakland can get to 7-4 for a Week 13 trip to 8-3/7-4 KC for a chance at the AFC West lead…that’s all you can ask for if you’re the Raiders. When they lose a letdown game to Cincy next week, then there’s that…
I think the Raiders will go to 7-4 and then get their heads lopped off by KC and then they would need to win two of their final 4 games to get to 9 wins and a playoff shot. I think they will get to 9 wins, but 8-8 is high potential too. 10 wins it out of the question, I think.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Is Darren Waller (3-40-0/5) dying off now? His numbers the last few weeks say so…
Note in this game…
Oakland was out time of possession-ed 35/25, a pretty big gap and ran a pretty low 55 plays on offense here. Why? All their interceptions on defense, and one of them for a TD. Oakland didn’t have to come after/chase hard after LAC because Rivers kept giving them the ball. They played a short, safe game and Waller tied several receivers for the lead in targets for Oakland in this game. Waller is still at top guy in the passing game, but Oakland doesn’t lean on one player to the ignoring of everything else…that’s what makes them smart/good.
Waller is like most top TEs right now, spare a rare few of them…5-8 targets, 3-6 catches, 50 or so yards as an expectation…but we need a TD to make it go, BUT is capable of 6+ catch, 80+ yard games with multiple TDs.
-- Can I just say a few things about Philip Rivers (17-31 for 207 yards, 2 TDs/3 INTs)/kick him while he is down?
1) I dislike Rivers more than most players in the NFL. I cannot stand his constant complaining and his on-field hissy fits towards his coaches and players.
We are told to ‘like’ Rivers, so he’s considered a ‘fiery competitor’.
When a guy like Baker squawks, he’s a jerk…because we’re not supposed to like him.
2) How can this guy (Rivers) fail in big games so much and never take a hit to his status in the football community? He’s like Matt Ryan, only worse…and yet we dismiss Ryan except his one great year. Andy Dalton did nothing but win games/go to playoffs early in his career and then died out as time went on but was OK…kinda like Rivers, but we all hate and can’t wait to replace Dalton…as Rivers is never questioned, no backup brought in for the future, etc. Cam Newton has had a far superior career, and yet Rivers is held in some higher regard in which it is said/thought the organizational dysfunction that ruins him – what do you think Andy Dalton dealt with in his career?
How could Rivers play in such a pivotal game as this and throw 3 picks (should’ve been 4-5) and complete 55% of his passes for 207 yards with 35/25 time of possession advantage against THE WORST pass defense in the league? And still not take any blame/hits?
-- Derek Carr (21-31 for 218 yards, 1 TD/0 INT) has good matchups ahead…CIN, @NYJ, @KC – but the concern is two-fold…
1) Will Oakland get ahead on CIN and NYJ and just run the ball down their throats to win the game flow, and thus hurt Carr’s output?
2) How will Carr/the Cali-based team fare in two cold weather games (in theory) at NYJ, at KC the next few weeks?
At first, I love the matchups…but then with more consideration, I’m worried where this game flow might go.
The early forecast for Oakland at Cincy Week 11 is 40 +/- degrees for that 4:25pmET start.
-- Remember how many TDs Mike Williams (2-55-0/3) was going to score this year as the full starter after booking 10 TDs last season?
How many TDs do you think he has this season?
Take a guess.
Just to buy you time, Williams is barely in the top 50 for PPR WRs in PPG so far this season. Just behind Danny Amendola, Mohamed Sanu, and Cole Beasley among others.
Did you guess? What was it like…2-3 TDs because of my hint with his ranking? How about zero this season? He has scored 1 TD his last 14 games (incl. last season’s playoffs). He last scored a TD Week 17 last season. What a difference-maker!!!
-- Rookie DEs Maxx Crosby (3 tackles, 0.5 sack, 1.5 TFL, 1 PD) and Clelin Ferrell (8 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 1 PD) went nuts on Philip Rivers…one of the big reasons, if not the biggest why they won this game.
The Raiders were bottom five in the league in sacks before this game. This may speak more about LAC’s offensive line woes.
If so, the KC-DST, a top 10 sack defense might have a pretty hot game against them Week 11.
-- LAC rookie SAF/OLB Drue Tranquil (14 tackles) played 100% of the snaps in this game…beating the 40-50% counts he was playing the prior 4-5 weeks…and, obviously, out up some numbers with it. He may be a LAC starter the rest of the way?
Snap Counts of Interest:
56 = Waller (97%)
26 = Moreau
49 = Tyrell
39 = Zay
31 = Renfrow
30 = Jacobs
22 = Richard
06 = Washington
73 = MK Williams
65 = Keenan Allen
62 = Patton
48 = Gordon
35 = Ekeler