NFL Week 10

Thursday
CLE @ CIN -6.5

Sunday early
KC -1.5 @ BUF
MIA @ DET -2.5
DAL -6.5 @ JAX
SF @ NO -5
TEN @ BAL -10
PIT -4.5 @ NYJ
ATL -2.5 @ TB

Sunday late
DEN -11.5 @ OAK
STL @ ARI -7
NYG @ SEA -9

SNF
BEARS @ GB -7.5

MNF
CAR @ PHI -6.5

It’d be amazing if the Browns could pick up the division lead and 6-3 here, but I don’t see it happening. They only went 2-1 against 3 of the worst teams in the league and didn’t win any of them convincingly. After having one of the top rushing attacks in the league, when Alex Mack went down it all fell apart. His replacement got a -8.1 rating on PFF last week, which is the biggest negative I can remember seeing. From the best overall line in the league to a disaster just like that. The Browns are only 2 last second field goals away from being 7-1, but the early success of the running game is simply gone and their surprisingly big play passing game is predicated on play action.

I just can’t see them beating a good team the way they’ve been playing. And Jeff Triplette has a personal grudge against the Browns - back in '99, he blinded a Browns offensive lineman with a flag, and the lineman knocked him down. He’s been punishing the team since. It’s awful for the most important Browns game in 7 years to be officiated by that asshat.

Bengals by 10.

If you think Triplette actually holds a grudge, then the Browns deserve to lose this game. And a regular season game is their most important in years? Very telling.

Yes, Triplette absolutely seems to be holding a grudge - the most poorly officiated games I’ve seen against the Browns almost always come from him. How does that mean that a football team, a couple hundred guys all together, deserve to lose because I’ve observed that? Even if it’s not true.

Yes, a regular season game late in the season to determine the AFC North division lead is the most important Browns game since they made their last playoff run. What does that tell? That the Browns are an unsuccessful franchise? Well, you’re welcome for that tidbit.

Dalton was clearly bad, but the Browns CB play and secondary play in general was amazing. There wasn’t one time I saw a guy clearly open, and most of the time the defenders were absolutely draped over the receivers. I don’t know how they were so bad for the first few games of the season, but the pass coverage has improved dramatically in the last few games.

That was complete domination. Browns are 6-3, tied for lead in the AFC North, the toughest division in football.

That’s the complete defensive performance I was waiting for.

Seems like the O-line made some adjustments. Other than Hoyer getting tackled for a loss before he could hand off the ball, the line was solid. The RBs showed good vision.

So… how about that Andy Dalton, huh?

<crickets>

Penalty total:

Browns - 6 for 62.
Bengals - 7 for 55.

Some fun stats, courtesy of Reddit:

I love that stat.

I hate when people bring the penalty count up as if it proves even officiating.

This game was actually pretty well officiated, and it didn’t have that much room to be influenced by poor officiating because it was complete dominance from the opening drive. There were only two egregiously bad calls that I remember - a textbook pancake block was called a hold and negated a big kickoff return, and they let a running play with the crow play out as a fumble even though it was clear he was doing for like, more than a second.

But addressing the issue of penalties and yards as if they’re conclusive.

  1. What if one team commits team commits twice as many violations that should be called a penalty as another in a game? Then an equal number of penalties doesn’t indicate fairness, one team is getting screwed.
  2. The timing of the penalty is critical on its influence on the game. A false start on a random first and 10 in a not particularly important part of the game is a penalty and 5 yards, and a phantom illegal contact on a critical 4th down play that determines whether or not the game is over is also just a 5 yard penalty, and yet one is an order of magnitude at least more important to the outcome of the game
  3. The actual yardage of the penalty doesn’t always reflect the amount it negated. A false holding call on the 6 yard line of what will become a 100 yard kickoff return gets recorded as a 3 yard penalty, but is effectively 100 yards. A penalty that falsely extends the drive makes possible whatever yardage follows that would’ve otherwise not been allowed.
  4. Non-calls have as big an influence as the actual penalties. If the officials swallow their whistles at holding calls by the Steeler offensive line as it happened, oh, for about an 8 year span, that gives the team a decided advantage created by the officiating even though it never shows up in the penalty comparison. And of course just any play that should’ve been a penalty, but isn’t, is just as much a misuse of officiating power as a penalty that is called that shouldn’t be. That doesn’t show up in the stat comparison.

So just reading off the penalty stat line is pretty much useless for that sort of evaluation.

No less useful than your biased recollections.

Yes, it absolutely is less useful. I’m actually pretty knowledgeable about football. I know how to evaluate holding, for example, when very few casual fans do. I realize you’re playing the “oh I’m sure you’re biased and just think the Browns get shafted no matter what card”, but then why would I single out Jeff Triplette? Wouldn’t all refs be equally guilty under my scorn?

Other people won’t notice any pattern like that because the only people who watch all the Browns games are Browns fans. And yet you’ll discount the observation of any Browns fan for being biased. Which means by your standards we essentially could say any officiating crew had any bias for or against another team, even if one really existed.

And he probably still would have been picked off twice.

Jesus, my team is in hell right now. Dalton is not going to be a good QB for us and we signed him to stupid money. Fortunately we can get out from under his contract after year two but that’s not going to help this season.

I am so eager to move on from Marvin Lewis as well. The shit he trots out onto the field for literally EVERY primetime game is embarrassing. Seriously, fuck that guy and his twelve year tenure and zero playoff wins in five appearances. He wouldn’t have a job anywhere else in the league.

Bad QB play.
Absolutely AWFUL play from the replacement RT for Andre Smith…Newhouse. Woke up this morning with cleat bruises all over his body from the abuse he took.
AJ Green playing with no heart and dropping passes.
Defense can’t tackle.

It’s bad in Cincy right now. All three of their losses have been ridiculously bad. Panic mode.

Jets are beating up on the Steelers. Tennessee leads Baltimore and probably got screwed out of a TD. If those teams both win, it’ll be the greatest football week in years.

Why is Jim Harbaugh wearing cleats?

He always does.

Wow, Jets, huh? Who would have thought that replacing the worst starting QB is the league would make the team better?

Can we see less of Sean Payton’s prissy, squinty face please? Thanks in advance.

Buffalo/KC

KC leads by 4 with about 2:30 left, Bills have the ball on the KC 15. Bills take four shots at the end zone? Why? Try for the first down and try to kill the clock? NAH. Kick the field goal so we are only down one? NAH. I’m no football expert but this made no sense.

The Raiders definitely have Peyton Manning’s number. No way they lose this game.