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This was the ugliest 20-point win a team could have. One of the worst games on offense I’ve seen the Patriots have all year…maybe, in years.
Something still doesn’t feel right with the Patriots. I know they’ve won eight in-a-row, but they are beating a lot of garbage teams up and struggling with so-so teams…They didn’t look great against Tampa Bay. The should’ve been beaten by the Jets. The Chargers could’ve beaten them. They’ve whacked DEN-OAK-MIA-BUF the last 4 weeks…sad sack teams, to me.
The Patriots won’t have a challenge until Week 15 with the Steelers, but Pittsburgh enters that contest missing Joe Haden and Ryan Shazier…another gift for the Patriots. That Week 15 game is going to be terrific television.
Buffalo is somehow still very much in the playoffs. They’re 6-6 and with their cake schedule – 9-7 is definitely in reach but I can’t imagine they cruise to 9 wins. They’ll stumble to 8-8 and out of the playoffs somehow. They don’t deserve to go to the playoffs…but the #6 seed in the AFC is going to have that said about them regardless.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Buffalo’s playoff hopes all ride on Tyrod Taylor (9-18 for 65 yards, 0 TD/1 INT)…and he doesn't look so good, health-wise. Plus, Sean McDermott is aching to replace him with Nathan Peterman (6-15 for 50 yards, 0 TD/0 INT).
Taylor got hurt on the first play of this game, a patellar tendon bruise, and tried to play through it until he had to be carted off. He’s going to try to play this week but for a quarterback whose only real value is his ability to run and create a little offense and set up his meek passing game…if he can’t run, he’s going to be a problem. Taylor is not the kind of QB you push out there on one leg…he’s not a good enough pocket passer (as witnessed by this game).
The Bills MUST win this easy Week 14 game vs. Indy…and without Taylor, it’s going to be a lot tougher to do. I expect McDermott to lie about Tyrod’s status all week, and then spring the QB change at the last second – he needs to protect Nathan Peterman. You can’t have Peterman up in his head for 3-4-5 days watching all kinds of reports about how terrible he is and how the playoffs are on his shoulders.
One of three things is going to happen with this situation…
1: Taylor limps onto the field and is a train wreck of handoffs and bad passes, and is eventually pulled.
2: Peterman is announced Sunday as the starter and whatever you thought Charles Clay or Zay Jones might do…get worried. However, he’s facing the Colts so it’s not as bad as his LAC debacle.
3: Because this is a must win, McDermott shocks everyone with Joe Webb at QB…and runs a high school offense of all-running with LeSean McCoy and Webb – Webb is a very good runner of the ball at QB. Or Webb and Peterman do a weird split role.
In this game, Joe Webb (3-27-0, 0-1 passing) was in early for plays as a wildcat QB…taking three carries, and when he passed on one of his snaps…he overthrew an easy TD.
I think it will Peterman to start and then Webb is pushed in if things don’t go well.
-- If this thought crosses your mind… “Well, thank God Rex Burkhead (12-78-2, 3-25-0/4) is scoring lucky TDs or he’d really suck. Should I start him this week…because those TDs are bound to go away?” If that runs through your mind…STOP IT!
That same thought has crossed my mind the past few weeks. Here’s the thing…Rex has become like the LeGarrette Blount circa 2016. Rex IS the TD guy. He’s in on most goal line runs, red zone offenses. He’s a weapon to run and catch a TD pass every time…and the Patriots are always in scoring positions.
Blount rushed for 18 TDs last season.
Burkhead has 4 TDs the last 2 games and 5 TDs in his last 4 games. You ride this horse until it falls…and one week without a TD is not ‘falling’. He’s on his way to 9-10+ TDs this season.
-- The Gronk (9-147-0/11) cheap shot…
I think Gronk should have been suspended 2-3 games, at least. With that being said, I wish the NFL would get its head out of its ass and figure out disciplining of cheap shots. Maybe slice off a million of that $40-50+ million dollar a year deal Roger Goodell gets, for what, I have no idea, and hire people who know what the hell they are doing to establish law and order.
You can’t dive and forearm shiver a guy laying on the ground WELL after the play…and get ‘a game’ suspension. If I’m the Steelers Week 15, knowing I’ll see New England in the playoffs, on the first series, I put in man #53 on my roster on defense and when Brady isn’t looking or is on the ground -- I have him try to hurt Brady, knock him out for the season. After I lose that guy, I send in man #52 on my roster and do the same thing like I’m sweeping Daniel LaRusso’s leg. You go get the body bag. What do I care? I lose bottom of the roster guys for a game suspension, so what?
Obviously, I’m being absurd for a purpose -- what’s the difference between why7 I proposed and Gronk intentionally trying to hurt a person…to the head. So now my guys are going to try to hurt Brady intentionally. What’s the difference in the end how much premeditated it was? If a defender did what Gronk did to a ‘helpless’ lying down QB – it would be multiple games.
Mike Evans full scale hits a person blind from behind after the play is well over, a retaliation hit, and he doesn’t even get suspended? F that. Next game, I do the same back to Evans for no reason other than if I decapitate him then I won’t have to face him in the AFC South 2 times a year for the next decade…and all I suffer is a one-game suspension.
I’m making silly arguments…but with no law and order, what would stop a sadistic person from doing this now? There’s no real penalty for these obvious cheap shots…so, I guess – why not keep doing them?
Hit a woman in a domestic dispute…off the field…you might lose your on-field career. And rightfully so.
Hit a man laying on the ground, well after a play is dead, in the head with your 280-pound body with the force of your forearm and shoulder – you get a one-game vacation, a game the team will win without you. A bye week for Gronk. If I’m Belichick, I’m thrilled. Gronk is a walking injury waiting to happen, now he stays off the field to rest up for a week. What’s the punitive damage to Gronk or the Patriots here? Nothing.
The only punishment is to all us Gronk owners needing him for the fantasy playoffs this week. We’re the real victims.
-- So why not the Bills-DST as an awesome play for Week 14 vs. the Colts?
I’m not against it, but I’m not talking about it much for three reasons…
1: I worry that Buffalo is going Nathan Peterman this week and that will put the Bills at more disadvantage for time-of-possession and field position. So, subject to change on QB news.
2: The Bills defense secretly is terrible. They got figured out after a hot start. Currently, #25 against the run…a league-high 18 TDs rushing allowed.
Currently, #24 in pass defense, #31 in sacks. They are a rare team that has more INTs than TDs allowed passing (10 TDs/13 INTs), but a lot of that action happened early and teams are just finding it easier to run for TDs against them. This game will be cold and the Colts will run more than throw.
3: Jacoby Brissett is not great, but he is not horrible…10 TDs/7 INTs this season and can run out of trouble. He does get sacked a lot, usually by big pass rush teams…but the Bills aren’t good pressuring the QB.
I like the Bills DST this week, I just don’t love them this week…I more like NYJ and GB as the dark horse sleeper situations.
Snap Counts of Interest…
46 = Tyrod
21 = Peterman
05 = Webb
68 = Cooks
48 = Dorsett
32 = Amendola
28 = White
26 = Lewis
22 = Burkhead