Think about how much the U.S. has changed since 2001.
The internet has taken over every aspect of our lives; people are walking around with super computers the size of an index card in their pocket that can play any song ever recorded AND can even access everything about a total stranger (if you're savvy enough). We've had a black AND an orange President. Gay people can get married. Weed is basically legal, and people are buying record players again. America and the world as a whole are completely different from life in 2001.
Really one of the only consistent thing that has happened over that time period is the New England Patriots success under Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.
In a league designed for long-term success to be unsustainable the Patriots have done the impossible. I've been reading different versions of that sentence for like 8 years. That's how long this ride has been going on. People were saying it was over in early 2010 after the Patriots lost their first home playoff game since 1978 to the Ravens.
Since week 3 of the 2001 season (with the exception of the 2008 season when Brady was hurt and the first 4 games in 2016) it's been Brady and Belichick leading the New England Patriots. They won Super Bowl 36 when I was in 4th grade. Now I'm 27 years old teaching my own students who weren't even alive when Vinatieri drilled a 48 yarder right down the middle to beat the greatest show on turf. In 2019 things have gone full circle. 17 years later to the day, the Patriots will be playing the Rams in the Super Bowl.
You could've gotten a DUI and killed someone the night of Super Bowl 36 and gotten out of jail already if you had good enough lawyers. That's how long this run has lasted. You could do a 15 year bid and still catch the end.
Or how about the Rams? They've had no less than 47 QBs and have literally uprooted and gone back to California.
Since 2001 the Pats have won 5 championships (with a chance for 6 on Sunday) and been to 9 Super Bowls. The next closest organizations are the Seattle Seahawks and Pittsburgh Steelers; each has been to three Super Bowls in that same time frame. Quick math that's 1/3 as many. So many franchises have had championship "windows" open, and close during this time period while the Patriots have had two separate dynasties under Brady and Belichick.
As a Patriot fan I feel like because of the last five years we've sort of forgot the 10 previous.
From 2005 to 2013 the Patriots won zero Super Bowls. I know in the grand scheme of things that isn't that long and no fan base is gonna cry over the Patriots not winning, but I can vividly remember the days where I worried I got all my best football too early in life. Back when I didn't truly understand the importance and appreciate it. I mean I was a 4th grader just getting into football.
There's 12 teams who have never even won a single Super Bowl and fan bases looking for their first playoff win in decades. So I completely get crying about 10 years between Super Bowl wins may seem ridiculous, but then again I'm a Patriots fan and it's my birthright to win....
During those "lean" years the Patriots were still among the elites in the NFL. It wasn't like they sucked and weren't winning. Quite the opposite tbh. They were consistently in the hunt for a Lombardi Trophy. They even made it back to the Super Bowl two more times, but were unable to seal the deal.
It really looked like there was a chance the Tom Brady Patriots would never win it all again. After the Kansas City game in 2014 I was crushed. I thought it was over. They had lost two straight AFC title games and couldn't protect Brady at all. I remember watching that game at Rhody Joe's just shocked that the run was really coming to an end. It felt like this team would never win a championship again. After getting so close, so many times it just seemed like the end was near. And I mean it would've made sense. Tom Brady was what 37 at the time? That's an age where it's ends. There's no shame in that.
Somehow we went from the end of the dynasty, to a completely new one. Since week 4 of the 2014 season the Patriots have been in 4 of the last 5 Super Bowls, with a chance to win a 3rd on Sunday. Think about that. The Pats have been in the last three Super Bowls. The Jets haven't been to a Super Bowl since a man walked on the moon.
I know there's gonna be people who said they never lost the faith, but I did and that's what makes these last five years so special. In a way they weren't supposed to happen. The dynasty could've ended that night in KC and nobody would've batted an eye. Now in five seasons since this been arguably the best five year run of the dynasty. The Patriots are a win away from being tied for the most Super Bowls win in the history of the NFL. Pretty impressive considering they started 0 for the first 35.
In short, I haven't written in a while and it shows. The Pats are back in the Super Bowl and have a great chance to win, I'm nervous, I'm excited, I'm happy I've gotten to witness this run of success. It'll never happen again, at this point everything is just icing. Appreciate these next couple of days, because they for sure could be the end, and if they are, what a fucking run it's been.
Let's just avoid talking about the whole there's only three football games left this season thing and instead focus our energy on how great (on paper) the match ups are today, okay?
In the wild card round the road team won 3 of 4 games. Last week things went a little more chalk, as the home team won every divisional round game.
That set up a conference championship Sunday featuring rematches of two of this regular season's most exciting games. Rams @ Saints and Patriots @ Chiefs. We've got two legend QBs trying to hold off the up and coming young guys who are looking to show the league it's their time now. I think a serious argument can be made that these teams also have the four best coaches in the NFL.
In the AFC we have the two-time defending AFC champion New England Patriots heading to Arrowhead to take on the Kansas City Chiefs. The Pats bested the Chiefs 43-40 in an absolute back and forth track meet in week 6. At the time that game was on TV2 as my main focus was on Game 2 of the ALCS. (S/O JBJ)
With Kareem Hunt and Josh Gordon both out of the picture both teams are a lot different; while still dangerous offensively. From what I'm told the L.A. Rams - Saints game earlier this year was great, but I was too busy throwing up on my closed toilet seat to really remember that one. Â¯\_(ã)_/Â¯
We all know how much I love game narratives and would look what we've got here. The home teams are 10-0 in conference championship games since the 2013 season. Five straight seasons where the higher seed has moved on. Idk....to me, as a guy who loves to bet the opposite color when you see it's been red or black 5+ spins in a row I just don't think that trend is going to continue. Allow me to explain.
NFC Championship Game: Los Angeles Rams vs. New Orleans Saints (-3.5)
Fox 3:05 PM
Everybody wants to talk about the Dome. The Saints are different in the dome! Guys, Drew Brees and Sean Payton have never lost a home playoff game. It's reaaally hard to win in New Orleans.
I mean, who cares that they've been together since 2006 and only have hosted 6 home playoff games?
This is the franchise's first trip to the NFC title game since the 2009 season. Which to me is somewhat hard to believe, but then again, let's not forget the Saints went 7-9 three years in a row. It's been the breakout performances of Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas that have somewhat saved the legacies of Drew Brees and Sean Payton imo.
The Saints are still obviously a great team with a ton of talent. They went 13-3, just like the Rams. I don't need to go position by position with these teams...there's a reason they're still playing. But, the Saints to me, seem like a team who has already peaked. They haven't been playing their best football the last month or so, but to their credit, they're still here. HOWEVAA if Alshon Jeffery actually had the best hands in the league, they probably wouldn't be. Drew Brees has not been the same QB he was before the Cowboys game and the loss of Sheldon Rankins for the Saints could be a real big issues considering how strong the Rams running game looked last week against a good defense in Dallas.
Despite all that I think this is gonna be a fucking awesome game, and one the Saints for sure could win. They're still the Saints...at home. You know the Superdome is gonna be wild. We have two great coaches who love to take chances. I still don't understand wtf McVay was trying to do last week going for it on 4th and 1 on the goal line when a FG makes it a two score game but it was exciting AF. I'm sure Sean Payton will have something up his tight fitting sleeves. We very well may find ourselves in a trick-play dick measuring contest, which I'm all in for. I wouldn't be shocked to see Taysom Hill doing some shit we've never seen before, like playing 3 snaps in a row. Both teams have two good running backs. I said in the preseason CJ Anderson would score 10 touchdowns this year and he's been doing everything he can as of late to make my take look more intelligent. Drew Brees is Drew Brees enough said. Jared Goff, while still young and raw at times, has the potential to be one of the upper-level QBs of the next decade. Both teams have above average field goal kickers.
I just like the Rams roster better than the Saints and really think the Saints are sort of a mirage. I know the Saints are at home and beat them by 10 earlier this year, but as I said earlier I don't think this Saints team is that same as they were that time of the year when they won 10 straight games. Under Sean McVay the Rams are 13-3 on the road the last two seasons, so clearly they can play anywhere. Give me this Rams D line to keep the Saints rushing attack in check. I love what Gurley and CJ Anderson have been doing together. This game should be a blast to watch with many lead changes, I just all week have thought the the Rams find a way to win on the road and am sticking with it.
AFC Championship Game: New England Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs (-3)
CBS 6:40 PM
This season the Kansas City Chiefs have one the most entertaining offenses I've ever seen. I couldn't have been more wrong on Patrick Mahomes. I thought he has bust written all over him, then he throws 50 touchdowns. Hand up on that one. Tyreek Hill is probably the most dynamic player in the league. Anytime he touches the ball it could be a house call. They are an annoying ass Golden State Warrior fake sport, just chuck it up offense, but to their credit it works.
Meanwhile the Patriots have been the tail of two teams this season. At home they're 9-0 averaging I'm pretty sure like 33 points a game. The road has been a different story for the Pats as they're just 3-5 with only one impressive road win (week 7 against the Bears). At 11-5 they had their worst regular season of the decade, but for the 8th straight season find themselves playing in the AFC Championship game. Of course I have to put on my Patriots hat and talk about that. EIGHT STRAIGHT AFC Championship games. That's just a stupid stat. That's high school and college. That's a long fucking time. Two Presidential terms. No down years, no slip ups. This team has been within shouting distance of a Super Bowl ring every year for 8 straight years. We will never see a run like this again in the NFL. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick are the greatest to ever do it together and sure they've lost their fair share of games in the playoffs, but they also have a chip on their shoulder. Sure they had it surgically put there, but it's there. They're playing this no respect card. They know people are saying they can't win on the road. Look I'm scared of what Tyreek Hill can do in this game, I'm worried Patrick Mahomes is gonna be dead to rights, then escape a sack and flick the ball downfield left handed for 60 yards. All that could very well happen.
But at the end of the day it's the New England Patriots with the best coach and QB ever against the lowly Kansas City Chiefs.. who until last week did nothing but lose home playoff games for the last quarter century. I may end up being wrong but I feel a lot more confident riding with Bill and Tom than buying in on Andy Reid and his freakshow QB who drinks hunts ketchup.
Patriots can run the ball and dictate the way this game is played. The Chiefs defense has a few guys, but overall as a unit does not scare me. Is Eric Berry healthy? I can never keep track. Chris Jones can ruin an offensive line, but this is a solid and complete team. I'm dying with my guys, the season starts today. I'm done writing, idk how, but the Patriots win this game and all is right in the world. I don't think Gronk is going to be silent again. If this is his last game in New England I expect him to ball out. I'm going with history, I'm going with the goats, I'm going with my heart and I'm going to be completely broken if I'm wrong.
I went 0-4 picking winners last week.
(3-1 ATS though on the blog)
Only thing I got right was that I said it was going to be a wild weekend, which it was. Road teams went 3-1 straight up. Both 6 seeds moved on. The only thing that wasn't a surprise is that Cody Parkey missed a field to end the Bears season. It all began with the Texans going back to being the fraud organization like I said they were YEARS ago.
I really need to bring back the fraud list.
I deserve everything I got for betting on them to win.
That game completely changed my outlook on DeShaun Watson going forward. You wanna talk about chums? Hey dude, maybe don't signal for the first down when you're down 90 points at home in the playoffs and the Colts are letting you run the ball and waste time.
The Seahawks lost their kicker and had to go for two late, which totally impacted the spread, not to mention their play calling knowing on every drive a field goal was simply not an option. Lamar Jackson turned back into a pumpkin, but in his defense I think the play calling did him no favors. Run, run, pass every series gets more predictable than the Guy meets girl, guy and girl have something good, guy fucks up, and eventually wins back girl plot line in every romantic comedy ever made. If he didn't' wait until the 4th quarter to start completing passes I think the Ravens could've actually pulled it off. The Chargers were not impressive at all IMO. I think they just benefited from playing a rookie QB for the 2nd time in three weeks to prepare for him. Granted the Ravens defense is one of the best in the NFL, but what the Chargers accomplished offensively last week does not impress me. Settling for field goals (especially with their kicker) is not going to end well in the playoffs.
As for the games this week, coming off an 0-4 on the blog winner wise I need to do better. Even if what really matters is the spread for our sake ;) Let's take a look at the games that make up the unofficial best football weekend of the year.
(6) Indianapolis Colts vs (1) Kansas City Chiefs -5.5
4:35 pm Saturday NBC
It's hard to judge the Colts after beating the fraud ass Texans, but they have to be the most surprising story of the season.
From Josh McDaniels leaving them at the alter, to 1-5 after 6 games, now they're in the divisional round.
Nobody on earth saw this coming. Maybe Jim Irsay when he was tripping on expired pills? But that's it.
They've gone 1-0 like 10 of the last 11 weeks. Andrew Luck is looking like he did pre-2015 and all of a sudden this team has a great offensive line, and solid defense. Not to mention the greatest kicker in NFL history. The Colts are that team nobody wants to play. They are scary AF. Marlon Mack is going to destroy the Chiefs front 7.
The Chiefs offense has been remarkable this season. They average just a tick over 35 points a game and are the first team in five years (2013 Broncos) who can say that. Patrick Mahomes threw 50 touchdowns and used both arms. Neato! Travis Kelce had the all-time single season TE receiving yardage record for about 15 minutes, and they won 12 games for the 2nd time in 3 years. It was another great regular season in KC.
That being said, I am never picking the Chiefs in the playoffs.
The Kansas City Chiefs are 1-11 in the playoffs since 1993, yes you read that correctly 1-11 with that one win coming in 2015 against the Houston fucking Texans and Brian Hoyer. So essentially this organization hasn't won a real playoff game since 1993.
Here is a list of years the Kansas City Chiefs have made the playoffs since 1993:
Now here is a list of every year the Chiefs lost their first home playoff game.
The two years that weren't included (1994 and 2013) they still lost their first game, they just were on the road.
"BuT doZo tHoSe tEaMs diDn't HavE paTricK mAhoMes"
Dude, I don't give a fuck. HOW MANY TIMES DO I NEED TO SAY I'M A NARRATIVE GUY!!? The narrative is and always will be until they prove otherwise that the Chiefs just don't "do" winning in the playoffs. Maybe it's because in football they call it year the season started season instead of when it starts and ends. Like it's just the 2018 season even though these games are played in 2019. Maybe the Chiefs over the years didn't wanna confuse people by winning during the year that wasn't mentioned in the season? Their bodies and brains can't compute that they're playing a 2018 game in 2019. Of course I'm talking about years past but just using that year for my example. Idk bro. But did you know Andy Reid has lost his last four home playoff games when favored?
Have you seen this Chiefs defense?
I have and they're fucking horrible.
The Chiefs have lost home playoff games in a litany of different ways during this run with like 47 different quarterbacks. They've missed kicks, they haven't gotten teams off the field, they've had holdings take game tying 2 point conversions off the board, they've blown 28 point leads (granted that was on the road), and they've had QB throw touchdowns to themselves against them. So yeah, even with Patrick Mahomes I still don't believe in this organization. Which sucks too because I like the Chiefs. I'm a big fan of the old AFL and their story.
Without Kareem Hunt this offense is not nearly as scary and with an average at best kicker and defense who does nothing well I'm going with history and my brain. The Colts are a much more balanced team than the Chiefs. They finished 5th in points for and 10th in points allowed. People say Arrowhead is one of the toughest places to play in the league even though every single team that goes into Arrowhead leaves with a playoff win. Until the Chiefs prove me wrong I am riding this wave. As a Patriot fan I'd rather go into KC than get the Colts at home. And the Patriots own the Colts historically, especially Andrew Luck, that's how much I don't trust the Chiefs.
Taking the Colts +5.5 is for sure the smart play. If you have the balls to go straight up ML, more power to you.
(4) Dallas Cowboys vs (2) Los Angeles Rams -7.5
8:15 PM FOX
To me the Rams are basically the Chiefs with worse uniforms. Fantastic offense with no defense whatsoever.
At least for the Rams they're getting their star running back...back. Todd Gurley is expected to play.
They do get to play at "home" but given their lack of support and the Cowboys following it's expected to be close to 50-50 Rams-Cowboys fans at the Coliseum.
I think 7.5 is a huge number for this game. As I write this I'm still not that confident in picking either team to win, but I think this game is really close. Both teams love to run the ball which should shorten the game and favors the Cowboys if they can keep the Rams off the field. I wouldn't be completed shocked to see the Rams cover since the Cowboys are a much worse team on the road (3-5), but given the fact this game is going to be played outside... in Los Angeles... in front of a ton of Cowboy fans I don't think that really matters too much.
Imo the Rams need this game much more, obviously both teams want to win in the playoffs, but the Cowboys are the Cowboys. Nobody is gonna be surprised if they lose. They won their home playoff game and stole the division in a year where they started 3-5. This year was a success for the Cowboys. Dak and Garrett already earned their contract extensions.
The Rams on the other hand lost their home game as a division winner last year with a prolific offense. This year they got a bye and were even better offensively, averaging 3 points a game more than 2017. Everybody loves to blow Sean McVay as this hot, smart, innovative, new style of offensive minded playing genius head coach, but if the Rams lose their first playoff game again I feel like the heat is gonna be turned up in L.A. He'd he 0-2 at home in the playoffs. Not great! I still really don't love Jared Goff as a passer either. I don't trust him in crunch time. Just looking at the guy's face tells me all I need to know. That dude just doesn't look like a Super Bowl winner.
I think what plays to the Rams favor however is they are the more desperate team for all the reasons I just said, not to mention all the guys they added this off season. They are in a win now mode while Goff and Gurley are still on rookie deals. It will be a major disappoint for this franchise if they can't move on this week. The pressure could cause them to buckle, and Dak is statistically one of the best 4th quarter QB's ever, but the Cowboys have been disappointing their fans for last 20 years which is why gun to my head I think the Rams eek this game out. I think it's going to be one of the most fun games of the entire weekend, and like the Colts-Chiefs game I do love the underdog to cover.
(5) Los Angeles Chargers vs (2) New England Patriots -4
1:05 pm Sunday CBS
The Chargers are better than the Patriots in pretty much every category except head coach and quarterback. If you were to list out the top 30 players in this game, like 22 of them would be Chargers. The Chargers have been basically playing on the road every game for the last 2 years and with the Patriots clearly not the same team they've been the last few years everything seems to be in play for a Chargers upset. They're not scared to come into Foxboro.
I'm not gonna lie, I've lost faith at times in this Patriot team. So inconsistent. Lack of play makers. I am really pissed off at how they built this team for what is likely one of Tom Brady's final playoff runs. Fucking load up! Instead they had a mini-fire sale. They had to rely on Josh Gordon this year because they didn't address their WR depth properly this off-season. Can't blame a junkie for being a junkie (completely have changed my take from my blog about him earlier)
I have been talking about betting against the Patriots in the divisional round for deep because I don't have a ton of faith in the way they've looked the last few weeks. Emotional hedge baby!
That is exactly why I love the Patriots to win this game.
I still think they're a long shot to win the Super Bowl, but at this point you never know? It's still Brady and Belichick, even if we can for see the end is closer than it may appear. Somewhat surprisingly despite the lack of stars defensively this unit is sound. 7th in points allowed. I like Phil Rivers a lot as a QB and he's #1 on my non-Patriots I wanna see win the Super Bowl list, but I think given the weather and the fact that the Chargers have to travel back to the east coast is huge for the Patriots. Plus he's 1-7 career against the Pats with the 1 win coming against Matt Cassel in 2008.
If it snows I love the Patriots chances even more. Have the Chargers ever won a game in the snow? Serious question. Chargers being +4 is very interesting to me since they can lose by 3 and still cover, but I have this feeling the Patriots win with relative ease. It makes zero sense and I'm aware of that, but everybody seems to be ready to write the dynasty off and say it's over. Whenever that happens the Patriots seem to show why they are still the Patriots. Even with how poorly Gronk has played as of late I don't think you can write him off. If at 5 on Sunday Gronk has 7 catches for 110 and 2 touchdowns I won't be surprised. I just don't see him going out this shell of himself that he's been all year.
The last thing I'll say about this game is that the Colts-Chiefs outcome will impact this game, if the Chiefs lose and the Patriots players know despite never admitting it to the media that if they win they get the AFCCG at home I love the Pats chances even more.
(6) Philadelphia Eagles vs. (1) New Orleans Saints
4:40 PM Sunday FOX
Defending champs against the Super Bowl favorite. Sean Payton has been game planning for this game since last year, that has to give a slight edge to the Saints.
Nick Foles Cinderella story just doesn't seem to end. After knocking off the bears 16-15 last week everybody is talking about that BDN mojo. Can he really lead the Eagles back to the Super Bowl? Part of me wants to see that just because of the terror it will cause in Philly. I would love to see them actually do the impossible and trade Carson Wentz just to see how people would react. It's nuts. The Eagles finally win a Super Bowl and they don't want that quarterback.
I love the Saints roster, and the fact that Sean Payton pulled the ultimate football guy move this week by bringing in the Lombardi trophy on a stack of $250,000 telling them if they want this to win 3 fuckin games it's really hard to pick against the Saints this week.
The only question I think is do they cover or not? At around 8.5 depending where you get it that gives you a lot of wiggle room as an Eagles backer, but I feel like the magic has to run out eventually. I'm not gonna touch this game but if I was I'd think taking the points is the move even though I'm about to predict a 10 point Saints win. I am so excited to watch this game and see how wild the Superdome is. I would love to see Taysom Hill find the endzone. I think Drew Brees need another Super Bowl ring to truly cement his legacy as an all-time great and he knows that.
Normally I really don't care that much about "celebrity" marriages, but, I mean.... this is Tim Tebow. This wasn't going unsaid. This is different. This man is the likeness of the only college football jersey I'll ever own (unless my son goes D1).
Even though tbh, frankly I'm underwhelmed. This is one of the most generic "I just got engaged" tweets I've ever seen. A wordsman like Tebow has gotta do better than this.
After that heartfelt Ole Miss speech this is all you've fucking got? Come on Timmy! That was vanilla bro.
I know I've been seriously slacking on the blogs lately, and it's after 10 on a school night, but there was no way on Tebow's green earth I was going to miss this. This speaks volumes that I am even here right now and not cuddled up in my flannel sheets watching "You" on Netflix. I don't think you understand. Tim Tebow is one the most important factors that makes up my identity as the Dozah. I am the biggest Tebow guy going. Yes ,the Doz of the once noticed website DOZonlife.com. I love Tim Tebow. He's my favorite quarterback of all-time who isn't named Tom Brady. I've spent years defending his honor; both on and off the football field. I heart wobbles with love like one of his passes. I am so happy for my guy (who should 100% still be in the NFL)
It's been a loooonnng time since Tebow has won; but man oh man, it feels good to win one. Tim Tebow is getting married to Miss Universe 2017, Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters. Not too shabby. It's so perfectly Tebow, marrying Miss Universe. Talk about a super-duo. They'll go circumcise the entire 3rd world together. I mean an 8 year age difference isn't that crazy, but I don't know man, the fact that Tim Tebow is marrying someone who was born in 1995 just is like, a little weird to me. Doesn't look right on paper. But whatever who cares? I'm just happy so he's really doing this. Suck it haters. Not gay!!
(even though I still don't think you can rule it out)
I remember watching her Miss Universe in my hotel room in beautiful Milford, CT while I was there for Fed-Ex training. It was horrible, I had to be clean shaven which is literally the meanest thing you can do to me. "Hey dozo here's $70 a day and free hotel for a week, but we're going to expose your fat baby face ruining any potential chance to actually use the hotel room." Appreciate it! Thank the fucking lord I am no longer working there. Back to her though... I was a fan from the start, I essentially calling that she was going to win from the moment I laid eyes on her.
Of course with Tebow getting married the infamous "is he a virgin?" shit comes up, and with that really lame jokes about him not having sex. I'm totally cool with busting balls, but just be funny. Plus I really do not think Tebow is a virgin. I mean there's just no way. I just think as a big Christian icon he had to keep that imagine. I mean there's no fucking way he could've been that stupid to pass up all the tail the biggest star in college football was promise as BMOC. I just don't get it man. I believe in God but people are so pick and chosey with the stuff they wanna really enforce. I just don't think if there is a God that's what's going to keep you out of Heaven. A piece of paper saying you're legally tied to each other? Oh okay.
Did you know in the 2015 preseason with the Eagles Tebow completed 58% of his passes?! 21-36 for 286 2 TD 1 INT 82 rushing yards 1 TD. Not bad at all! Worthy of a roster spot on one of 32 teams but that's beside the point...
Anyways I was trying to make this quick but here I am already rambling. I think it's just because I'm blogging this with a Pac-10 Bill Walton game on in the background and it's influencing my style. Whatever... Let's go Tebow! Getting married! Being normal! Go Mets!
The 2018 NFL regular season is quite unique to me in the sense of how wild open things are heading into the playoffs. There are a lot of recycled narratives in football, and we say this a lot, but I'm not sure there's ever been year in the past since the playoffs went to six teams where it seems like every team has a legitimate argument as to why they could win the Super Bowl. I like a few wild card teams chances to keep their season going next week too. I could honestly see any team in the dance winning it all. Something you never see in football, despite it being one of the more wide open sports historically when it comes to this time of year.
With the lines of all these games so close, it looks like Vegas has no idea what's going to happen either. Even the good teams have giant question marks. I wouldn't be totally shocked to see road teams go 4-0 in the Wild Card Round. There's soooo many narratives and flaws with all these teams. Can the Chiefs get past history and their lack of defense to actually win the playoffs? Even with Brady and Belichick...are the Patriots too old and untalented? Bears and Ravens have fantastic defenses with exciting; yet limited QB's. Rams may have peaked too early. Can the Eagles really do it again with Foles? Do the Houston Texans matter? Is Andrew Luck fully back? Will the Saints defend the dome like 2009? Can Phil Rivers ever make it to the Super Bowl? Can Russell Wilson carry this team back to the Super Bowl? All these questions will be answered in the upcoming weeks.
Let's look at this weekend's games.
(6) Indianapolis Colts 10-6 v (3) Houston Texans 11-5 (-1.5)
4:35 pm ESPN
In the first ever all-AFC South playoff match-up, we have two teams who split their regular season matchups, with the road team winning each game. In week 5 you would've never guessed this would end up being a playoff matchup. The Texans started off 0-3 and the Colts were 1-5 before they turned things on. Despite a lot of shit from the outside on the quality of football, In the last two seasons all AFC south teams have made the playoffs. Easily the only division who can make that claim. I believe going into the regular season I said this was the best division in the NFL...
These are two of the hotter teams in football. The Texans have lost twice since September, and the Colts are 9-1 in their last 10. The Colts did come into Houston a few weeks ago and win as 4.5 point underdogs, which is the Texans only home loss since week 3. They do say it is tough to beat the same team on the road twice in one season..
The Texans are slight favorite at -1.5.
I have nooooooooooo idea what to expect this game. The Colts O line went from the worst in the NFL to the best thanks to the addition of Quenton Nelson. With the Texans strength being their D-line the Colts have a legitimate chance to keep the Texan pass rushers like J.J. and Clowney at bay. That being said the AFC South is weird AF and the early Saturday wild card game has sort of turned into the Houston Texans bowl this decade. They've played in this game in 2011, 2012, and 2015. They know this time slot and it's iggy of me to say but with that 7 year old girl getting murdered in Houston with DeAndre Hopkins saying he's using his game check to pay for the funeral makes me think this is a rally around something game for the Texans. Shit like that is what happens in sports. I expect him to go off. and for the first time in franchise history the Texans are in the playoffs with a legitimate QB. DeShaun Watson can be shaky at times, but overall he's a game changer, who has shown he loves the big stage. T.Y. Hilton is a little banged up, and I feel like everybody is on the Colts. I don't have great confidence in this pick but I do think the Texans find a way to win close game.
Gun to my head I say 27-23 Texans
(5) Seattle Seahawks 10-6 vs. (4) Dallas Cowboys 10-6 (-2)
8:15 PM Fox
All things considered, the Seattle Seahawks are the most surprising team in the playoffs. After an off-season that saw the official end to the Legion of Boom, the Hawks were in a time of transition.
In a division with the hot, young, up and coming QBs in Jared Goff, and Jimmy Garropolo it looks like the Seahawks window was closing.
Then Jimmy G went down early in the year opening the door for Seattle. Despite a lot of guys who weren't part of their 2013 and 2014 Super Bowl teams the Seahawks thanks to Russell Wilson and Pete Carroll are back. It pains me to say it, but they remind me of a west coast Patriots. It's all about the coach and QB. They've followed that formula of New England, replacing stars and still finding a way to win.
Then we have the Cowboys. They were 3-5, but with how bad the NFC East was, that was right in the thick of things. They added Amari Cooper and have turned into a different team. A shutout loss to the Colts is their only loss of the 2nd half of the season.
This game to be is a total toss up. Seattle is a different team on the road and have dropped some questionable road games this year, losing in Denver and San Francisco. Tough places to play for sure, but teams who didn't do much winning in 2018. Then there's the Cowboys. They seem to always find a way to lose these games. The Cowboys have won 2 playoff games since 1995 please do not forget that. I love Zeke and the linebacker play of the Cowboys, but there's just something about Russell Wilson. Something is telling me he finds a way to win this game. Dak isn't awful. but I still really don't believe in him as QB. Wouldn't be shocked to see him with a turnover that costs them late. Even with one of the biggest blunders in NFL history, I still like Pete Carroll and think he's a much better coach than clappin Jason Garrett.
(5) Los Angeles Chargers 12-4 v (4) Baltimore Ravens 10-6 (-3)
1pm CBS (Sunday)
This is one of the games I'm most excited for. I love what both of these QBs do, even though they are popular opposites. This should be a really fun game.
The Ravens went into L.A. and beat the Chargers in week 16 22-10 but I think that's a game you gotta throw away, the Chargers were missing all their running backs who matter.
I've very interested to see how the Chargers handle Lamar Jackson for a 2nd time in 3 weeks.
I really like what both of these teams do, the Ravens know who they are. They play great defense and control the clock. The Chargers have guy by guy probably the most talented roster in the NFL top to bottom. I think that if the Texans win, whoever wins this game has a great chance to go into Arrowhead and win in the divisional round.
I like Phil Rivers a lot, and really want to see him go on a playoff run. He's a guy who needs a Super Bowl appearance to really get people talking about how great he's been for nearly the last 15 years. That being said having to go east for 1 o'clock game somehow still matters, and while this team has been great on the road, I like Harbaugh for the Ravens and think as long as Lamar Jackson doesn't turn the ball over, which we've seen the last few weeks he rarely does, I like the Ravens to win this one. Who knows if he'll last longterm in the NFL, but right now I love the way this team is playing behind him. They have a new jolt of life and play great defense behind him. As the GOAT Bill Belichick says, they play great complimentary football. They haven't had too many home playoff games under JH, but when they happen the Ravens win. Harbaugh is a sort of shocking 2-0 in home playoff games. Not a huge sample size, but I think it goes to 3-0 this weekend.
That being said, I have a future bet at 9/1 for the Ravens to win the AFC and with the Chargers as a slight underdog I may hedge even this early in the game.
(6) Philadephia Eagles 9-7 vs. (3) Chicago Bears 12-4 (-6.5)
Fox 4:25pm (Sunday)
I give the Eagles great credit for finding away to make the playoffs. This has been a really weird season for them, and yet again here they are in the playoffs...with Nick Foles at QB.
Big Dick Nick has turned into Big Game Nick and kind of reminds me of Jim Plunkett coming in relief leading teams to Super Bowls.
The Eagles to me have a ton of talent, and know what it takes to win a championship with the most important factor...great coaching.
They have been the hot upset pick this weekend, and I totally get why. They have the experience against a young, unproven team.
I just think everybody is sleeping on the Bears and their defense a little too much. Yes everybody will focus on the QB and how Mitch has been shaky at times this season, but this team finds a way to win with him. Their only loss since starting 3-3 was with fucking Chase Daniel so you can't hold that against them. The Bears just find a way to win with Mitch on the field, he hasn't lost since week 7.
I would not be surprised at all if the Eagles won this game, and I think taking the points is a smart play, and Eagles ML is the best value of the weekend. I just think this Bears defense is a fucking problem. Mack has been the new monster of the midway, Eddie Jackson is an absolute play maker, and I think it took so much for the Eagles to make it this far that they don't have enough in the tank to beat the Bears in Chicago. The one thing that worries me about the Bears is their special teams. I don't trust Cody Parkey outside of 35 yards.
PROVIDENCE — The Foxy Lady strip club will be allowed to reopen as it fights an appeal of the decision to close it permanently, the Rhode Island Supreme Court ruled Thursday.
The order Thursday afternoon gave the club its entertainment license back and agreed to take up the case for full arguments, on the calendar for April. In the meantime, the Chalkstone Avenue club, which was ordered closed the day after three prostitution arrests there on Dec. 11, will be allowed to operate again — just without its “VIP” area.
It’s unclear when the club will be able to actually open its doors again.
The ruling comes after a separate appeal, of the revocation of its liquor licenses, scored an early win at the Department of Business Regulation: a hearing officer for the state said the club could get a liquor license back, but first had to meet with the city to discuss its business and security plan. At that time, the club had not yet gotten its entertainment license back.
The Foxy Lady was on the city Board of Licenses agenda Thursday night, but was pulled at the request of the club before the state Supreme Court ruling.
An attorney for the Foxy Lady did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The court’s decision also referred the case to mediation, usually a sign that the court is prodding both sides to settle their differences. The ruling also gave its food license back; the liquor license was not before the Supreme Court.
After closing the club temporarily in the immediate aftermath of the prostitution arrests, the city Board of Licenses voted on Dec. 19 to permanently revoke all of the club’s licenses, shutting it down for good — unless the club succeeded in an appeal. So far, the club has done just that, winning permission from the state and the state’s high court to open while it angles for a full decision.
The Department of Business Regulation and state Supreme Court could still ultimately decide to uphold the city’s punishment, but until then, the club will be back in business.
City leaders said the club was, in the words of a police major, a “prostitution parlor.”
The club, on the other hand, denied it had any knowledge of prostitution at the Foxy Lady, and warned that the loss of its licenses during a potentially lengthy appeal could put it out of business and 225 people out of work.
An undercover investigation on the evening of Dec. 11 ended with the arrests of three dancers. The dancers offered the undercover officers “anything” they wanted in private VIP rooms, for $300. In one case, police said, a dancer groped a detective and explicitly offered sex; another offered oral sex, according to police reports.
I cannot tell you how happy I am to hear this news.
If you didn't read the actual ProJo article and went straight to my take......thank you :)
Long story, short; undercover cops busted the open secret that strippers at Foxy Lady will let you do whatever the heck you want for a mere 3 pieces of paper with a picture of dude who wasn't even President. They needed to go undercover to prove that strippers will suck your dick, because there definitely isn't real crime to worry about. That being said, I am relieved, and happy to see the place re-open. It is one less thing for me to worry about.
Now for short story, long; I have been back on my bullshit (ubering). On December 8th just three days before the cops broke the big mystery, I brought a young lady, around my age all the way to New fucking Bedford and back to drop off her kid to her baby daddy then drop her off at work... at Foxy Lady.
Normally, I really don't love getting into conversations with passengers. I am in uber strictly for the cash. It is purely business to me at this point, I'm not 24 anymore. Just get in my car, shut the fuck up and give me your money while we listen to music that I'd assume you'd like by glancing at you in my rear-view mirror because I don't care enough to ask anymore.
However with a ride this long I got myself into some good old fashioned small talk. This elevated to medium talk rather quickly when she revealed to me the fact that she is a bartender at "F-O-X-Y". I love how she told me like that so much. As to not spill the beans to her like at least 6 year old son who was watching a movie on her phone. Like he knows what's going on? Which the more I think about... it makes no fucking sense. If he knows that Foxy is G damn Strippy, I would think he also knows how to spell it? I mean what kind of kid knows what strip clubs are and the stigmas of having your mother work there but is unable to identify it while being spelled out. If you know what a stripper is, but not how to spell foxy there are bigger problems than the fact mommy is colleagues with them.
Anyways, once her son was with his father, the levy was broken. I just had a million questions about working at a strip club. I'm not even a big strip club guy. Ask any of my friends, I was just fascinated about what it's like to work at a strip club. Especially as a "bartender". Oh the things she's must've witnessed. Throughout our chat she was adamant to tell me she was not a stripper, and that she does not get down like that. Kind of judgmental about it, which to me is ironic, I mean you still work at a strip club. It's not like you sell bibles, lady.
But I mean good for her, I definitely respected her more knowing she's not a stripper, but I'm also not like anti-stripper in a career choice sense. Do what ya gotta do, and if you're hot enough for men to spend money to see you naked I say chase that money while you can, because like a pro athlete this won't last forever. Get paid girl!
That being said there's a stigma, and it's the choice you made. It's the trade you made, baby.
As we climbed the conversation tree, we happened to step on the "yes, the strippers do fuck customers" branch in our nearly two hours together. Of course I was enamored, but not surprised as I am a 27 year old Rhode Island man. I have friends. I know what goes down. But it's just different to hear it from the horse's mouth, or in this case like, the stableboy's mouth.
And wouldn't you know a mere few days later the fucking cops bust Foxy Lady for having prostitutes, shutting down the entire place, putting nearly 200 people out of work. Did I feel like a total ass hole or what?
Now I mean, this chick could've definitely not remembered our chats, as she was calling to check in on her kid like 4 times on the hour ride back. Her head was focused on more important (to her) things. But I'd like to think she'd remember that only a few days before she had a pretty detailed conversation about how the sausage is made with her uber driver on a two hour round trip to drop off her son to visit his father, whomst she's no longer romantically involved with.... before her shift at the strippy.
Needless to say I felt awful, I mean I definitely do not fit the undercover cop description as I have long hair and am the size of Vince Wilfork, but who knows what this chick thinks? Maybe I'm working in getting people to open up to the harmless uber driver in exchange for a slice of all the weed they've seized? So in my eyes the last couple weeks I've been the guy who she probably thinks told the cops, that yes, it's true, some strippers are Foxy are basically hookers. I'm why this lady isn't working. Fuck.
So thank you, Rhody Supreme Court for putting this chick back to work (Eventually). At least I know she will be able to support her kid. And I mean in a way maybe no VIP room means more tips for her since now more people will be in the main area? I just want to say officially on my blog, in my first posting of the year of lord 2019, to the single mother working as a bartender at Foxy Lady, I did not tell the fucking cops. I got your back, and I really appreciate you paying me in cash on the way back.
I love how the state takes this fake moral high-ground about prostitution, in Rhode Island of all states. A state as clean as the rag your dad has used to change the oil in your car for the last 9 years. They only care cause they aren't getting a piece of the pie. Fuck the loser hardo cops going undercover busting strippers for being basically strippers. Go break up a gang or something. Buddy is rolling in his grave.
Foxy keeping it's lights on the entire time it was closed was such a fucking power move. They knew this was just a minor setback for a major comeback.