By the Numbers: 2019 Season Hype

Typically I don’t make posts to this column outside of the regular season, but as I’m looking forward to the season starting, haven’t really talked about football since February, and need extra posts for Blaugust, I thought I’d do something a little bit different. I won’t bother making picks for the preseason because we all know that really doesn’t count for much, also there have been two weeks worth of games done already so there isn’t much point. There are two more weeks of preseason games to go and then we get to the season opener on September 5th, featuring the Green Bay Packers @ the Chicago Bears. Anyway, I thought I’d take this time to go over what’s different with my team, by featuring a couple of talking points.

There were some notable departures from the team. Two players that were both drafted by the Packers and two players who have been pretty solid in their time with the team. Firstly, Clay Matthews was picked up by the Los Angeles Rams, and Randall Cobb will be appearing with the Dallas Cowboys in 2019. Both are great players and favorites of mine, but I will admit that the production of Matthews has been in a slow decline, and both players have been bitten by the injury bug on more than one occasion. Between the two of them, I think Matthews is the bigger hit, just because receivers come and go, and Cobb was having trouble getting open more often than not. I think with some of the other players we’ll get to here in a minute, Matthews could have complimented well, but we’ll never find that out. This brings me to another big piece of news:

For once, the Packers have splurged in Free Agency. The defense is getting a makeover of sorts, and from things I have read it sounds like the new players will make an immediate impact. Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith are supposed to be beastly linebackers — younger and faster than Clay Matthews is anymore. Adrian Amos at safety is a quality upgrade, and I don’t know much about Billy Turner, but he is expected to shore up any weaknesses on the offensive line. If these players make the impact that most pundits are expecting, I imagine we won’t be missing Matthews for very long.

Finally, the draft. The 2019 draft looks pretty good for the Packers. Defensive End, Safety, Guard, Tight End, Defensive Tackle, Cornerback and Linebacker were all picked up. I was disappointed by these picks initially, because I feel like the Packers are always drafting defensive players, while they already spent a bunch in free agency for defensive players as well. But when I started thinking about the depth of our offensive positions, I realized that we are actually pretty good with our receivers and backs. Aaron Jones should be on point just like last year. Davante Adams and Geronimo Allison have already been pretty good, but some of the now 2nd year guys should start to come into their own. Besides, when you have Aaron Rodgers slinging the football, most average receivers get good — or they end up on the bench.

I’m looking forward to the 2019 season. It’s been two down seasons in a row and not making the playoffs during that time has got to make this team hungry. If we make it back to the playoffs I think we might finally get Rodgers another ring — we know he deserves it for putting the team on his shoulders all these years. Whatever the case, GO PACK GO!

By The Numbers: Season Results 2018

So the 2018 season has come to a close, and that means I need to round things up with my totals for the year and see how I stacked up to last season’s scores. First, let’s start with the playoffs breakdown, which I did a little differently this year. Last year I ended up making all of my playoff predictions in a single post, and well, that was probably stupid. As such, I ended up with completely different teams in different rounds and basically screwed myself out of points. This year, I made my picks before each weekend so as to maximize my chances at making the right picks. Whatever the case, I ended up doing okay, so let’s take a closer look:

Playoff Picks:

Wildcard Round:

Texans 30, Colts 24
Cowboys 21, Seahawks 20 – Correct, almost got the score right too!
Ravens 28, Chargers 24
Bears 27, Eagles 21

Divisional Round:

Chiefs 24, Colts 20 – Correct
Rams 30, Cowboys 21 – Correct
Patriots 27, Chargers 14 – Correct
Saints 31, Eagles 24 – Correct

Championship Games:

Patriots 31, Chiefs 28 – Correct
Saints 30, Rams 27

Superbowl LIII:

Rams 30, Patriots 24

Post Season Score: 6-5

Going 6-5 in the post season wasn’t too bad, but I have to say that I think things should have gone differently in the Championship games in particular. I also absolutely hated this year’s Superbowl, but there’s nothing we can do about that now, is there. Let’s recap my regular season weekly scores next:

Regular Season Weekly Scores:

Week 1: 10-6
Week 2: 10-6
Week 3: 7-9
Week 4: 10-5
Week 5: 6-9
Week 6: 8-7
Week 7: 10-4
Week 8: 11-3
Week 9: 6-7
Week 10: 8-6
Week 11: 6-7
Week 12: 7-8
Week 13: 9-7
Week 14: 7-8
Week 15: 9-6
Week 16: 11-5
Week 17: 12-4

Regular Season Total: 147-107 (apparently made a math error somewhere throughout the season so this doesn’t match my total in the last regular season post)
Combined Total: 153-112

Compared to last year’s total: 149-118, I had an increase of 6 correct calls.

That seems like a very small increase, given that I didn’t even make picks in the last week of last season, and I also made the mistake of picking all of the post season games in one post. Whatever the case, I still improved year over year, so for that I’m happy. I guess I’ll have to try to outdo myself again for the 2019 season, but we have a good 8 months to wait until I can get started. How about that Superbowl though? Man, talk about boring! I took until the forth quarter until we saw any real action, and given two of the highest scoring offenses, I was surprised to see it go down the way it did. The fifty third Superbowl went down in the annals as the lowest scoring big game of all time, and that’s pretty pathetic. You know what else is lame? The Patriots now have six rings, and Tom Brady gave them all six. Excuse me while I clean up this vomit off of my shirt.

See you next year.

By The Numbers: Superbowl LII

I finally managed to watch some playoff football this weekend, and wow, talk about controversy! Firstly, let’s check my picks and then we’ll get to the details.

Patriots 31, Chiefs 28 – Correct
Saints 30, Rams 27

I almost managed to pick both games correctly, but honestly the results should have been reversed. The Saints were completely robbed, when this happened:

How that doesn’t get called, I’ll never know. Whatever the case, this ended with them having to kick a field goal, and magically the Rams managed to get down the field in under two minutes in order to kick for the tie. Apparently the Saints didn’t put up much of a struggle in Overtime, but I didn’t catch that part. I did however watch the Pats/Chiefs game from start to finish, and it was turning into a good game by the fourth quarter. The Chiefs were simply fucked by officiating. First there was this:

Seriously, this is worse than the penalties to Clay Matthews that were happening at the beginning of the season. Where was he being roughed up? What a joke. Then to make things worse, this put the Patriots in position to tie the game and send it to overtime, but then a late flag comes down after the Chiefs intercepted Brady with under a minute to play in regulation. They should have sealed the deal right there, and honestly we should be seeing an NO/KC superbowl rather than the one we’re getting.

My pick for the winner of the Superbowl:

Rams 30, Patriots 24

I’ll probably watch it still, but I’m over this season. I can’t wait for September. After the big game I’ll do my tabulations for my season and this column will go back into hibernation.

By The Numbers: Championship Weekend 2018

Somehow or another I still have yet to watch any playoff football. I did manage to keep track of the scores though, and this week I am happy to announce a perfect score for the first time ever, I think.

Chiefs 24, Colts 20 – Correct
Rams 30, Cowboys 21 – Correct
Patriots 27, Chargers 14 – Correct
Saints 31, Eagles 24 – Correct

I honestly believed that the Colts and the Chargers didn’t belong in the playoffs in the first place, despite winning their Wildcard games. The Cowboys losing to the Rams wasn’t a huge surprise, but at the same time I didn’t really know which way that game was going to go. I called the Eagles’ playoff magic being over correctly, but it actually looked like they might pull it off for a while there. Whatever the case, I did good for the week, and I’ll be happy to add these correct picks to my season total. Next up are the Championship games, and well, we’ve seen several of these teams in this position before. Here are my picks:

Patriots 31, Chiefs 28
Saints 30, Rams 27

I hate the Patriots. I think everyone in the country outside of New England feels this way. It’s unreal how many times Brady has been to the Superbowl. It’s unreal that they do this year after year. I’m always happy when another team manages to knock them down a peg, but in the AFC there just aren’t that many competitors it seems. The NFC has seen quite a few different teams come to this point, but it’s been a while since we’ve seen the Saints there. I would rather the Saints win than the Rams, and I would rather the Chiefs won over the Patriots. I see the Saints being able to do so. I don’t see the Chiefs surviving the weekend. Either way, we’ll see what happens. I’m fairly confident these picks are the way things will pan out. We’ll have one last pick to make going into the Superbowl, and by this time next month I’ll be able to go over my summary of the season. Until then.

By the Numbers: Divisional Round 2018

I didn’t manage to watch any of the Wildcard games, but I wasn’t really looking forward to any of them either. I think there are going to be much more interesting games come this weekend during the Divisional round, so I’m going to do my best to watch at least a couple of them. I don’t really have a lot to say given my lack of watching anything in a few weeks, so let’s grade my Wildcard Weekend picks:

Texans 30, Colts 24
Cowboys 21, Seahawks 20 – Correct, almost got the score right too!
Ravens 28, Chargers 24
Bears 27, Eagles 21

Well, not too good there. I sincerely believed the Texans and Bears would win those matchups, but they both let me down. I kinda figured that the Chargers were going to win despite my picking against them, but I just can’t stand the team and will nearly always pick against them (I did pick for them several times through the year but only because they ended up being so hot and I wanted to improve my pick scores). But can they beat the Pats? is the real question. That seems unlikely, considering it’s supposed to be a snowy day. Anyhow, let’s move on to my picks for next weekend:

Divisional Round Picks:

Chiefs 24, Colts 20
Rams 30, Cowboys 21
Patriots 27, Chargers 14
Saints 31, Eagles 24

I don’t see the Chiefs losing to the Colts. But who knows, I didn’t see them making the playoffs this year either. I don’t see the Cowboys making it past the Rams, who have looked pretty solid this season, but again, anything could happen. As I said above, I think the Pats crush the Chargers in cold weather, and finally I think the Saints are poised to go to the Super Bowl this year, and the Eagles’ magic is about to wear out. Time will tell. I’ll check back in next week to see how my crystal ball worked out.