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Match-Up That Matters: Bears at Giants

| November 17th, 2016

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The Giants are a bizarre team. Talented, poorly-coached, temperamental, exciting, boring and just overall perplexing. What’s the match-up that matters?

Entirety of the Bears Defense

vs.

Odell Beckham Jr.

Three thoughts:

  • Beckham is the most spectacular talent at the wide receiver position I’ve ever seen. But he has two supreme flaws. (1) He’s an emotional train wreck. Hit him a few times when he’s not expecting to be hit and he’ll probably start crying. Not metaphorically. He literally cries on the sideline. (2) He drops the ball quite a bit. While it doesn’t get covered by the national media, obsessed with his one-handed show stoppers, he’s less reliable with two hands. This is a game where the Bears need to stick a corner on Beckham early and tell Adrian Amos to separate him at the torso every time he tries to go over the middle of the field.
  • Giants offensive line is better than many believed it would be coming into the season – especially at home – but it’s still not a unit that should stonewall the surging Bears pass rush.
  • Eli Manning has had success getting the ball to Beckham on quick slants and slyly smiling as OBJ takes those three-yard completions for 70-yard touchdowns. As crazy as it sounds, the most important fundamental to beating the Giants is tackling. Tackle well on the outside and NYG will struggle to move the ball consistently down the field.

Stop Beckham, win. Do I expect the Bears to do either? Who cares, I’m in France.

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201 Comments

Audibles From the Long Snapper: Around the League We Go!

| December 22nd, 2015

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Around the League We Go!

(1) Rex Ryan has many flaws as a head coach but he’d never lost his locker room until this season. His defense has quit on him and that side of the roster is going to see massive turnaround this off-season. Rex took the best collection of pass rushers in the sport and neutered them.

(2) Odell Beckham Jr. is an asshole but I love the people criticizing Tom Coughlin for not benching him. Coughlin is coaching for his playoff life and you want him to bench his best player? There’s a time to seize the moral high ground. Sunday wasn’t it.

(3) When faced with the prospect of a playoff spot, the Bucs & Bears faded. But I’d be surprised if both teams aren’t fighting for playoff berths a year from now. They both need very specific personnel upgrades.

(4) Does any player so consistently and obviously kill his coaches more than Aaron Rodgers? It seems to happen every week now. “We don’t have a clear cut direction”? The week after the head coach takes over the play calling?

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Everything We Learned About the NFL This Season.

| February 3rd, 2015

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Top NFL Teams Separated By Merely a Play

Look at the fates of the NFC’s best teams in the month of January.

  • Detroit loses to Dallas after a pass interference flag is announced and walked off by the game official and then ludicrously picked up. (Has anybody yet given an explanation of this?)
  • Dallas  loses to Green Bay after a Dez Bryant catch – a spectacular catch – is deemed a non-catch by one of the more ludicrous rules in the NFL rulebook. (And in my opinion a gross misinterpretation of that rule.)
  • Green Bay loses to Seattle with a ludicrous late-game collapse featuring a tight end dropping an onside kick that hit both of his hands and his face.
  • Seattle loses to New England with the worst play-call in the history of professional football, asking a non-pocket passer to pocket pass a tight-window slant route on the goal line, at the death. (And do so with the league’s most physical runner just, you know, standing around.)

In all four of these games a serious argument can be made for the losing team deserving victory. That’s how close the league has become at the top.

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