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This game reminds me more and more of the Bears/Colts Super Bowl.

That year by DVOA:

Indianapolis: Offense: 1  Defense: 25
Chicago: Offense: 20  Defense: 2

This year by DVOA

New England: Offense: 1  Defense: 31
Philadelphia: Offense: 8  Defense: 5

PHI O likely around 16th or so with Foles IMO. Bears had a better run game than the current Eagles do. Bears won 39-14 at home in NFC title game that year much like Philly did in this year in the title game. But the Bears' disadvantage at QB showed up in the biggest game as Grossman garbage his pants. Kind of feel Foles does the same here.

Pats 30-17. GL all.

QUOTE Originally Posted by cropduster:
Pats defense will give up over 100 ground yards to Jay Ajai alone. I think the Eagles will run through that nonexistent Pats defense like a hot knive through butter.

Ajayi is a major boom or bust player. When he doesn't connect on huge runs, he's just average. It was the case in Miami and is the case in Philly. Take out his two big runs with the Eagles and he's averaging 4.1 YPC. Will he get long runs on NE? Not likely. They've given up three runs of 30+ yards this year in 438 attempts...that's 0.68% of the time.

I'd bet Belichick is much more comfortable stacking the line and letting Foles beat him than vice versa.


QUOTE Originally Posted by tsw:
The lines were obviously wrong in those Eagles games.  And Foles certainly doesn't have to outplay Brady- since 2000, of the 14 games where there was a discrepancy at QB, the team with the superior QB won 5 out of the 14 games straight up and only covered 3 out of the 14 games.

Since 2000 the team with the better rated QB in the Super Bowl is 13-4 ATS. Two of the losses were last year when the Falcons pissed away a 99% win with dumb decisions and the other was when Seattle threw the pick at the 1. This stat should really be 15-2 ATS. If Foles doesn't outplay Brady then odds are pretty high that the Pats are going to win ATS.


is on New England -4.

Philly was +3 at home to the Vikes and Falcons. Makes them +6 on a neutral vs those teams. You telling me the Pats would be dogs to the Falcons and Vikes in this game? No chance. This line is simply a product of the Pats playing bad last game and Philly covering by 5 TDs. That's it.

Classic buy low, sell high and how often do you get to do that with the Pats?

Nick Foles has had a career's worth of mediocre play and now he's a great QB after one game? No doubt he played well vs MIN but the guy was 2-15 on deep throws coming into the game and had a 23.3 rating under pressure. Last game he was 4-6 on deep throws (at least a couple when Rhodes went out of the game) and had insane 152 rating when under pressure. With two weeks off, two weeks for Belichick to prepare, I'm betting Foles regresses and regresses hard.

But for Philly he can't afford to regress. We can dissect this game all we want but at the end of the day Foles has to outplay Brady. The Pats are an absurd 29-4 since Brady came back from suspension last year. In the 4 losses the Pats gave up 31,42, 33, and 27 and the opposing QBs had these lines:

68% completions  348 yards  3 TD 0 INT  124.6 RAT

66% completions  263 yards  3 TD 0 INT  112.1 RAT

76% completions  316 yards  3 TD 1 INT  130.8 RAT

80% completions  368 yards  4 TD 0 INT  148.6 RAT


That's the level Foles has to play at to outduel Brady. Mediocre QB off a career game and the greatest coach of all time has two weeks to get him off his spot and make him uncomfortable...the odds Foles plays well again are not good. Sell high.

Pats also off a game where they probably should have lost had Jacksonville not crapped the bed. Down double digits, lost the turnover battle, didn't cover. This current Pats group is 7-1 ATS the last two years off an ATS loss. And how often do the Pats play two bad games? Buy low.

Lots of talk about how NE always play close Super Bowls. I think they are going to win this one by double digits.




High temps in the teens in Pittsburgh on Sunday and dropping throughout the game. You said in your first post Blake is only accustomed to sunny Florida. What happens when you put a bad QB in cold weather who has never thrown a pass below 38 degrees (and that was against an 0-16 team)? Who cares that there's no wind. When it's that cold the ball is hard and slick. He's going to be painfully inaccurate in this game. 

Bortles wasn't bad because of wind last week either. He just sucks and he mentally shit his pants. Now take him from a home game vs the 30th ranked pathetic pass rush of the Bills to a game on the road, in the teens, and vs the #1 pass rush of the Steelers (better than JAX) and you have a disaster in the making and multiple turnovers likely. Ben's a statue but he has the best pass blocking OL in the league. JAX only managed 2 sacks in 57! dropbacks in the earlier game knowing full well PIT had to throw all game. 

The Jaguars also had far and away the easiest schedule in the league this year. They are going to get their asses handed to them on Sunday.

Just .02 from an old vet around these parts...

The new look of the new forums is pure trash. Unconscionably bad. Who could have possibly thought that layout was a good idea? Click on the NFL Forum and with a straight face tell me it doesn't look like a 6-year old designed it.

I get the other features and they are probably a great update. But the "switch back to what you're used to" button has to be permanent.

Going with the Celtics again in Game 2. 

They were clearly dead in Game 1. Didn't expect it and thought crowd would will them to a win. 

Much different story tonight IMO.

andarmac99 much for that.
QUOTE Originally Posted by jontt95:
You didn't mention that Cleveland romped Boston by 23 pts in that last game they played each other.

Boston just got off of a long series.  Cleveland is rested.  

Yes, Boston could win this game or cover, but there is a reason why the line is -4.


Yes, they certainly did. But that was a game where Boston was expected to win and the Cavs were on a b2b and everyone thought they had major holes at that point. It was just a game Boston wasn't ready for and LeBron as a dog said darn you.

Exactly the opposite scenario here. You've got a feisty as hell, tough as nails Celtics team that will be ready and have nothing to lose.

Win, lose or draw, the C's +535 in this series is nuts. The only whitewashing we'll see involving the Cavs is what will happen in the Finals if they survive this series.
And they were +4 in that game. And are now -4. Not sure I've ever seen a line swing that much in 12 games.

Here's what happened in those 12 Cavs games:

4 straight losses to end the regular season; two of which were very meaningful games against the Hawks that the Cavs lost in embarrassing fashion.

4-game sweep of a 42-40 Pacers team where Cleveland looked like total crap. Their winning margin was the lowest ever by a team that won a series 4-0.

4-game sweep of a Toronto team who has a long history of coming up small in the playoffs and who lost their best player in Game 2. Throw that out.

Has Cleveland improved 8 points in the 12 game sample size above?

I'd argue they haven't improved a single point. They've just faced trash in the playoffs. I don't believe "the switch has been flipped". You don't play no defense for the whole year and just flip a switch in the playoffs.

This line is pure perception.

A 30-11 home team, with the far better coach and defense catching 4.5 at home is a autobet for me. Throw in the fact the crowd wants the Cavs bad and the recent Celtics wave (Game 7, lottery win) and I think that building will provide any energy the C's would be lacking under normal circumstances coming off a Game 7 with a days rest.

Boston +4.5 and ML

QUOTE Originally Posted by ActionMagnet:
You're luckier than luck can ever be.. thank Quinn and Shanny. 

No doubt all the breaks went the Pats way in the 2H. They all went against them in the 1H though. 

I do think experience played a big role in the 2H. Pats just executed perfectly while ATL choked and unravelled when things got tight. Coaching staff really fell apart on those last two drives. You just have to run the ball 3 times with Freeman and try the FG. 

Pats were the better team at the end of the game though. 

Type of loss that bleeds into next year for ATL. Plus losing Shanahan makes them a 7-9 type team. 

QUOTE Originally Posted by theIntrospect:
This was my last bet ever. Ureal. Wish I never opened this damn thread. Peace covers. Good luck to u all.

How about now?


Falcons no depth on DL and they died in the 2H. You saw what happened. Brady chewed them to pieces. Didn't see them getting as much pressure as they did in the 1H but you saw what happened: Brady was all out of it.

37-17 FD, 546-344 yards, and +17.00 TOP.

Falcons defense.
Few Props:

Brady OVER 24.5 completions
Edelman OVER 7.5 receptions
James White OVER 28.5 rush + rec yards

Laid -180 on the Brady prop.

Kind of think now that Belichick will come out passing. Dink and dunk their way down the field with a lot of tempo. Falcons no rush and can't cover so the ball will be out fast and those short completions to the backs/Edelman/random white guys will be nearly impossible to stop. 

Tempo early will wear out Falcons front. They have no depth to begin with and in the 2nd half I think that's when they pound Blount and backs into a tired line. That's much more effective than doing it early. Pass to to win.
QUOTE Originally Posted by roastedpeanuts:
Here is some rebuttal that may not matter much, I do agree with most of your assessment, You didn't even point out the obvious one, Deflate Gate, Rodger Goodell and now we find out his Mom has been very sick.  Tom Brady is one player I don't want to be motivated to play against me.

1.Atlanta has had  leads, big leads in a lot of games this year, they tend to play soft defensively with these leads so the defensive stats are somewhat blow out of proportion.
2.Atlanta's coach will have the proper scheme to beat the Patriots Defensively, Quinn played a similar pocket passer with Seattle and absolutely annihilated Manning.  Houston did a very good job on Brady, if they had some offense, that game could of been a lot closer.  I believe Quinn knows exactly what kind of defense he has to implement to win this game unlike the vomit game coach Tomlin decided to go with.

3.  Atlanta's offense has out schemed everyone they faced for the most part this season,  wide open tds vs very good defenses, Seattle and Denver to name two.  What Pats usually do defensively is double the best wr, Juilo, who can beat double teams, and man up with Butler on the other,  Sanu is to big for Butler,  They did vs the Jets a couple of years ago and Brandon Marshall killed Butler.  Gabriel will cause a lot of havoc with his speed. 

4. Atlanta no huddle offense will be something the Pats very seldom see, Atlanta runs it just about as good as the Pats do,  puts a ton of pressure on the Defense, won't be able to switch fast enough, you might see the old fake injury on Defense by both teams in this game.  I think the Atl rbs will do a very good job running the ball, over for both of them in prop bets.

5. Motivation, Matt Ryan can finally be legitimized, he has to win one to get serious credit.  Coach Quinn was here with Seattle and I think that's the most important thing is to have a coach that understands the routine so he can get all the players on the proper schedule.

6. Patriots #1 defense feels like anything but #1, I know they are sound unit but there is absolutely no fear like with true #1 defenses, Seattle, Denver, Baltimore Ray Lewis teams.  I believe the edition of Alex Mack is the biggest piece for the Falcons.

Prediction on score Atlanta 31 Patriots 24.


Great post. Few counter points:

1. ATL was up in a lot of games but so are most good teams. Falcons gave up over 28 PPG to Top 12 scoring offenses and unfathomably those teams scored 23 TD in 30 red zone trips. They were very legitimately torn up by good offenses.

2. Quinn manning that SEA D is prime example of why ATL is in trouble here. SEA had much better players in that Super Bowl than ATL does here, but Lane got hurt at CB, and Avril at DE. The pass rush tired and couldn't get pressure late and Brady absolutely carved up what was an awesome defense for 13/15 124 yards and 2 TD in the 4th. No pressure and he's going to destroy anyone. Falcons aren't nearly as good as Seattle and what happens when they get tired in the 4th quarter? They have no depth to begin with on the DL.

3/4 Good points. ATL has been superb in scheming this year and the Pats staff will have to adjust quickly.  

6. No doubt Pats aren't #1 D. But people forget that compared to ATL they are. Need to keep an eye on Alex Mack. Didn't practice last week with rumored high ankle sprain. If he's hampered Falcons are in trouble in the middle as their RG is one of the worst in football. Pats actually really stout in the middle. Think ATL better served with the dumpoffs to the edges to the RB. Might go over receiving props.

Bottom line is I think evidence is clearly there to support the notion the Pats will break into the 30s with little resistance. Pats D and Belichick will find a couple stops and I feel Matty Ice gives one up.

Covers Help / Topic Title / View Post
Should also say But can Atlanta outscore the Pats? in bold before the paragraph that start with the sentence "Well they do bring a Top 10 all-time offense into the game".

Apologies. Pasting issues.

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Hey CT, topic of the following thread should read "Change is Good". Can you fix it? Thanks.
The turnover battle will be a huge key in this game. It looks pretty even overall with NE +12 and ATL +11. Though without any heat on Brady that significantly reduces the likelihood the NE O is going to commit TO. One other point is I think people forget that Matt Ryan has had some terrible pressure situation TO in his career. That fact is kind of being glossed over this year. Green Bay hand their hands on multiple balls last game but couldn’t catch them. Atlanta had the lead late in Seattle this year until Matt Ryan threw a pick to cough up the game. He threw another one over the middle against SD late this year that cost them the lead, and later the game in OT. Against KC he threw a brutal pick on a 2pt play that cost them the game. If this game is tied late, who is more likely to make the pressure interception? It ain’t #12 in white.

The Pats execution and attention to detail. If you’ve heard Brady + Belichick over the years, the #2 and 3 things they talk about behind TO are 3rd downs and red zone execution…the more overlooked facets to football but are extremely key to winning games. The Pats hold big advantages in both situations in this game. With Brady at the helm:

3rd down O:

NE: 2nd

ATL: 11th


3rd down D:

NE 7th

ATL: 26th


Red Zone O:

NE: 3rd

ATL: 10th


Red Zone D:

NE: 7th

ATL Dead last


The Falcons had the 2nd worst red zone defense in 11 years. Teams scored a TD 72% of the time they got into the red zone. That is not how you prevent the Pats from scoring.

 Experience. Usually I don’t buy into experience much, if at all, in the NFL. But the Pats come here with a ton of Super Bowl experience. They know how to handle the week leading up to the game. The Falcons don’t. I think we see the Pats calmer and more settled early. Atlanta has 7 first or second year starters on defense. If they have jitters early, then the Falcons will be down big and turned into a one-dimensional offense.

Track record and trust. The Pats win. Brady and Belichick have won for years. If you blindly bet New England every game since Brady entered the league you’d be 164-121 (57.5%) ATS and up a mint. They are even better in games that are forecast to be close as they are 54-30 (64.3%) ATS when the line is -3 or less. Consistent, winning football on the field and at the window.

What wins games?  The Patriots have the better coach, QB, defense, execution, and matchup. That is what wins football games, especially at -3. Change in life is fun and exciting…just not in this game.


NE 34-24  
We know what it takes to stop Brady, do the Falcons have it? The Falcons are 26th in sack %. Vic Beasley has 15.5 sacks, which is impressive, but is somewhat fluky as he’s just 18th at his position in total pressures. Their next leading sacker has just 4.5 sacks, but he tore his bicep in the Divisional game and is out. Behind Beasley the Falcons players bring a combined 12 sacks into this game...for the entire season! They are not going to get any pressure on Brady at all, and definitely not up the middle where he hates it the most. Do they have the corners to make him hold the ball? Jalen Collins, Brian Poole, and Robert Alford are your men. Safe to say not the most intimidating group Brady has seen.

The Falcons have a bad front, don’t have great corners, and that is why Atlanta is in the bottom 1/3 in opp QB rating…and that is a historical recipe disaster against Brady. Since the ACL surgery Brady has faced 38 teams that ranked in the bottom 1/3 of the league in opp QB rating. In those games, New England is 35-3 averaging 33.2 PPG… and two of those losses were against the great Giants front. Those Giants teams had a front but no back so their season numbers in pass D weren’t great even though they possessed one of the things needed to slow down Brady. Atlanta does not.

Brady is at the top of his game too. He had the highest graded season PFF has ever given out at 99.6. The Falcons really have no chance to stop this offense. Atlanta doesn’t even have the luxury of a great run defense to make the Pats one-dimensional as their run D is 26th in yards per carry. The Atlanta defense is going to be torched.

But can Atlanta outscore the Pats? Well they do bring a Top 10 all-time offense into the game. New England has the #1 scoring defense in the league. Are they that good? No. There’s no doubt they haven’t played good offenses this year. But they do have a lot of experience, and a lot of good players in the back 7. They also have Bill Belichick. The best coach in the game has two weeks to prepare. We know the game plan already. He’s going to double Julio Jones on every play, and devote a spy to Freeman and Coleman catching passes out of the backfield. That is set in stone. And he’ll say if we can do that then we will only lose this game if Sanu, Taylor Gabriel, and Austin Hooper outscore our offense.

Belichick also has a pretty solid record of holding down good offenses. He’s a master schemer and with two weeks’ prep time will no doubt have some extra wrinkles.  Since 2002, the Pats are 22-8 against Top 5 scoring offenses. They’ve held 21 of those 30 teams below their season scoring average, and on average over the 30 games are holding them to 5.3 points less than what they score for the year. I also believe the Pats will run the ball quite a bit on a bad run defense to keep the ball out of the ATL offense’s hands.

The Falcons are a fresh, young, new team that has come out of almost nowhere to light the league on fire this season. They have a 2nd year head coach. They have a young offensive coordinator who has worked wonders with the great talent he has had all season. These guys are just plain exciting.

Everyone knows New England. People are tired of New England. Who wants to see these cheaters win another Super Bowl? When people see the same team or player over and over again you begin to take them for granted. And when a new, young upstart crashes onto the scene and dazzles people throughout the year, everyone begins to jump on the bandwagon. They want a change. Change is good after all, right?

This Super Bowl reminds me of Steph Curry vs LeBron James last season. Despite the Warriors winning the title the year before, Steph lit the league on fire last year. 73 wins. Unanimous MVP. Steph was now the best player in the league. The torch had been passed they said. LeBron James wasn’t as new or exciting. People overlooked his greatness and criminally underappreciated how good he still was. Change was fun…for a while. Few thoughts on SB 51:

Tom Brady’s kryptonite. I have watched almost every Patriots game since Tom Brady came into the league. If you want to beat New England you absolutely, positively have to make Tom Brady have a subpar game. That’s it. If Brady plays a good game they are not going to lose. A strong pass rush and great cover corners are what is required to beat him. He’s too smart, and the Pats coaching staff is too good, to be beaten by scheme. You need great pass rushers and corners because you can’t diagnose defensive talent just straight up beating people.

If you’ve got a great rush, it hurries Brady and throws him off. If your corners are great and can cover, he gets happy feet and ducks at pressure that may not even be there because his internal alarm bells are saying he needs to get rid of the ball.

Since the year he came back from ACL surgery, and throwing out meaningless Week 17 games, Brady has lost 31 games over 8 seasons. 22 of those 31 games were against pass defenses ranked in the top 1/3 of the league in opp QB rating…some combination of a great rush, great cover corners, or both. Of the other 9 games, 5 were either against great fronts or required a lot to go against NE. Two of them were against the great fronts the Giants had, one against the Jets great front, one a fluky loss to Philly last year where the Eagles had 3 return TDs, and another late to the Bills where NE still had 500 yards and 31 points but lost by 3 with a Bills return TD the deciding factor. So, he has lost 4 games in 9 years against a pass D that is not in the top 1/3 and didn’t have a great rush…and none of them are as bad as Atlanta.

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