We're dangerously close to playoffs and seeing defenses pick up steam as they dissect the offensive schemes that were blowing up all over the place. Oh, and two hook and ladders on Sunday. What?
- As much as it pains me, I can't stop watching this:
(Clearer gifv here. Seriously, just keep watching it, it's magic. Over and over again. Magic.)
Let us never speak of that game again.
- Amari Cooper: In six games for the Raiders this year, he had just 280 yards and one score. In his six games in Dallas, he has 642 yards and six touchdowns.
As a reminder, Dallas has won five straight in large part to Cooper’s help in the passing game. So far, this deal has been great for Dallas and that bottom half of the 1st round pick the Raiders got isn’t looking so hot. Same goes for that Bears pick.
Jon Gruden being back and taking things back to the stone age reminds me of when it was fun to hate on the Raiders because they were owned and run by the Crypt Keeper. Now we have Chuckie and he’s almost as easy a punching bag as Al was.
- Poor Reggie McKenzie. All he did was take one of the worst modern rosters, turn it into a playoff team, have his role unofficially replaced with a head coach who gutted his roster and then be the scapegoat for a poor season. Bill Barnwell posted this as a reminder:
(Also, we all should've seen Hue Jackson's ineptitude coming as we all forgot about the Carson Palmer trade.)
- George Kittle: 210 yards in the 1st half. Wow! One target, 0 yards in second half. 210 yards all game. Record for yards in a game for a TE is 215. Ouch.
- Head first dives aren’t what they used to be: https://twitter.com/GeneSteratore/st...
- Saquon Barkley is basically having himself Adrian Peterson’s rookie season rushing plus Reggie Bush’s rookie season in the passing game. So, kinda good. It continues to make me think that despite their desperate need for a QB of the future, the Giants were right to not let Barkley pass them by. But then I’m reminded that Nick Chubb was taken early in the 2nd round and he’s managing 4.5 yards after contact while being given less than a yard of running room before contact. That means he’s being hit immediately but still ripping off decent runs due in large part to how powerful he is. I haven’t seen someone consistently push a pile like this since Jamal Lewis.
- Speaking of Cleveland, after seeing Baker Mayfield pull off some magic on Sunday I'm becoming a believer. Mayfield lacks some things, but his ability to fell and escape pressure while keeping his eyes downfield is instinctual and a good fit for the modern NFL. He still makes entirely too many throws he shouldn't have but he nailed a few this game and that was the difference. Another differing factor were his play fakes, with this one being my favorite.
- Mitch Trubisky continues to be an absolute work in progress when a defense is able to force him into bad Mitch. Against the Rams he threw 30 times for less than 100 yards. Once again, rushing would’ve been more effective than passing (spoiler: it was). That’s not 2018 football, Bears! Get with the program!
With as bad as Trubisky played, Goff was worse statistically, tossing four INTs (technically three, one doesn’t really count as it was end of half throw) while under constant pressure from the Bears’ D, literally. With a run game going nowhere and Goff’s security blanket in Cooper Kupp on IR, the Rams looked like a 9-7 or 8-8 team, at best. Chalk this one up to OL issues.
The Lions gave everyone the blueprint on how to mess with the Rams OL and screw up their screen game (sorry Gurley owners), but the Bears had the talent to turn it into a rout. It’s on the Rams to adjust now that defenses know how to disrupt them.
Since Week 9, the Browns lead the NFL in yards per play offensively (6.9 yards) and have converted 14-of-14 red zone opportunities for touchdowns.
— Rich Hribar (@LordReebs) December 10, 2018
Bonus: Lebron killed a man.
Have a good week, everyone!