• Gary Porpora

NFL CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND



I AIN’T SAYIN’…I’M JUST SAYIN’…


Big Ben…


As a lifelong Pittsburgh fan, I hope Ben Roethlisberger garners more respect upon his retirement than he did as a player. Yeah, I know, he acted like a child after he signed his first life-changing contract.


But all the Pittsburgh fathers trying to protect their daughters imaginary honor with their Barney Fife pulling his pants up, talking shit, about how if, “Ben ever tried that with my daughter, Why, I’d…” (Sniff/snort!)


Let me play Mayberry’s Andy Taylor, “…He’d kill ya…”


Big Ben Wouldn’t Be a Finalist on Sports Mount Rapemore…


And don’t give me any of that “RAPE!!!” bullshit. Let’s keep it real; you accuse a man of the second most heinous crimes on the books, you goddamn better well have proof.


I read every police report and news story.


Andrea McNulty the Nevada gold-digger, never even filed a report. She was too busy emailing friends about …”hoping for a little Ben.” The dead drunk coed, who went through all the motions because daddy wanted to protect his little pumpkin’s honor, never filed charges.


Maybe because the DA, Fred Bright, after a month-long investigation enjoined by the GBI, revealed in a 2017 interview: "It wasn't a difficult decision," said Bright. "I'm a prosecutor seeking justice, and we did not have a case. It was not even a close call."


Case closed.


Tommy


The nauseous ball-washing of Tom Brady began with his retirement announcement this week…


Brady is as good as any QB I’ve ever seen, heard or read about—but when discussing his legacy precludes mentioning his sanctions for twice being caught cheating to gain a competitive advantage, it’s like discussing Bill Clinton’s presidency without mentioning a sticky cigar, or Richard Nixon’s exit without mentioning the break-in.


Tom Brady is arguably the NFL’s GOAT quarterback, a pre-eminent HOFer—he’s also a HOF Cheater.


Overtime


All the weeping and gnashing of teeth because Buffalo didn’t get a chance to answer the Chief’s touchdown in Overtime is a microcosm of the crying bitches Americans of all cultural and political stripes have transmogrified into.


We Don't Need No Goddamn Defense…


Buffalo entered Arrowhead Staium with a historically good defense.

Number One in:


· Scoring

· Pass defense…

· Opponent YPPass Attempt…

· Oppponent YPP…

· YPP Differential..

· Opp. 3rd Down Conversion %

· Opp. Points Per Play


Because HC, Sean McDermott left his defense in Buffalo means we must, yet again, alter the rules?


The NFL better be careful. To paraphrase Ned Beatty in the iconic film, Network, the league is meddling with its “primal forces of nature.…”


The beauty of NFL is the pristine balance between offense and defense, between player safety and unbridled violence; the balance of having a league designed to produce thirty-two 8-8 teams only smart management, superior coaching, undiscovered talent, and dumb luck can make better



The NFL had the perfect numbers, the perfect structure:


· 32 teams..16 teams per conference…8 divisions with 4 teams per…

· 6 Teams from each conference advanced to the post season…

· 37.5% of the NFL’s teams made the playoffs—The. Perfect. Percentage.


Today there are 17 games in a season an fourteen teams in the playoffs.


Just as I, and a lot of the universe predicted, some awful teams will make that expanded playoff field; both Pennsylvania teams please raise you hands.


The obvious change to shut up the Whinos is to allow the team giving up the first score in overtime to match that score.


This would have given Buffalo a chance to match the KC touchdown.


Anything to shut up the Bitches American sports fans have become.


The primal forces of football nature, however, demand their reckoning—if the NFL owners are going to further manipulate the rules to minimize the importance of defense, they risk alienating fans like me who found Saturday’s games—a 13-10 Niners win and a 19-16 Bengal victory—more entertaining than Sunday's score-fests.


Don’t tip the balance of the game any further towards the offense…You risk losing fans who don ‘t want to see a gridiron version of pro wrestling.


BTW: If you want to see why Ned Beatty was Oscar nominated for one six minute scene.


Here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=35DSdw7dHjs


(Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Network is the signature American film.)



Finallly, Superior Coaching Doesn't Insure Superior Intelligence


Football coaches are very often not the brightest bulbs in the tulip field.


Let's review...


KC’s Patrick Mahomes had 13 seconds to gain 45 yards after the Bills kickoff sailed through the endzone.


Here’s the link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymmGVyhnlao


Sean McDermott’s strategy from the kick-off on out cost his team a trip to the Super Bowl.


McDermott’s first mistake was failing to call a squib-kick—not an onside kick, but a low powerful line drive in the middle of the field, aimed at a Chiefs player’s head. If that player—or any player—touches the ball, the clock starts ticking. Even if a KC player catches the rolling football—a difficult ask—and gives himself up, at least TWO SECONDS tick off the clock…Much more like three seconds, but we’ll assume smart situational awareness from Andy Reid and his staff. Also, the ball probably won’t be at the 25 because the forward players should have been told to not touch the ball.


Now, we’re at 11 seconds with Mahomes at the, let’s say 20 yard line, fair?


Why in the name of all that is unholy would you have your number one goddamn defense rush four, (against five blockers), and drop your seven defenders 15 yards downfield—especially when the Chiefs are bunching three receivers on the left, including Kelce and Hill?


I don’t care what anyone says—that’s just f@#king stupid…


If the Bills had crowded that formation at the line and made sure each receiver received a welcome chuck when the ball was snapped, they could never create the natural screen pass that gained 20 yards—look at the video exactly at the 1:41 mark. Hill catches the pass at the 31 with 10 seconds left, he gives himself up with 8 seconds left…


Now, we all know KC is brimming with talent; we must assume Mahomes would be prepared for my strategy. They might gain those yards on Mahomes second and third options—but instead of 8 seconds there would be 6—or less.


Check out the 1:48 mark—it’s the same defense!!! The Bills are a little closer to the line but letting the most dangerous tight end and receiver group in the league burst off the right side of the line without any resistance! And Kelce—untouched off the left side.


At the 1:49 mark there are six red shirts blocking four white shirts. That means, there are seven Bills having to cover four KC receivers


During the breathless two-play sequence, if Bills defenders had been in the trips or Kelce’s face, at the line, we shave four seconds, and Mahomes doesn’t have the time insert the dagger.


I wish I could earn McDermott’s money and be that inept.



Championship Weekend


This is my second favorite week of the post-season. I like the Divisional round the most because you are seeing the eight best teams, playing their best.


Here’s my up to the minute tally:


DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF WEEKEND

DPW Tally: 2 – 2

2021 Regular Season Overall Tally: 140 – 131 – 1 .517

2021 Overall Tally: 146 – 135 – 1 .520


DPW Totals 2 - 2 Cumulative Totals: 75 – 45 .629

DPW Specials 2 – 2 Cumulative Specials: 41 – 37 - 1 = .527

GAME OF THE WEEK 10 – 10 LOCK OF THE WEEK 9 – 10 – 1

UPSET SPECIAL 13 – 6 O/U OF THE WEEK 9 – 11

PREMIUM PICK CUMULATIVE 112 – 78 – 1 .589

PARLAY WINS – 4


SUPER WILD CARD WEEKEND

Las Vegas Raiders 10-7 @ Cincinnati Bengals 10-7 (-5.5, 49) LW [U]

New England Patriots 10-7 (+4.5, 44) @ Buffalo Bills 11-6 O/U

Philadelphia Eagles 9-8 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 13-4 (-9, 46) [U]

San Francisco 49ers 10-7 @ Dallas Cowboys 12-5 (-3, 51) GW [U]

Pittsburgh Steelers 9-7-1 @ Kansas City Chiefs 12-5 (-13, 46.5) [O]

Arizona Cardinals 11-6 @ Los Angeles Rams 12-5 (-4, 50) [U]


DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF WEEKEND

Cincinnati Bengals (11-7) @ Tennessee Titans (12-5) -3.5 47 0/U

San Francisco 49ers 11-7 @ Green Bay Packers 13-4 -6 47.5 GW [O]

Los Angeles Rams 13-5 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 13-4 (-5, 49) US [O]

Buffalo Bills 10-7 @ Kansas City Chiefs 12-6 (-3 54)


THE GAMES


Some trends from my friends at VSIN and Oddsharks.com…


· Historically, the conference championship games have provided an edge to favorites and Overs.

· Since 2003, home favorites are 22-8 (73%) straight up this round and 17-13 ATS (57%).

· We've also seen overs go 22-11 (67%) over that stretch, including a perfect 4-0 over the past two years.


Cincinnati Bengals (11-7) @ Kansas City Chiefs (13-5) (-7, 54) GW [O]


Cincinnati has surrendered 21 points or less in regulation time in six of its last seven games and eight of 10. Their defense has improved from a bad start. Mike Hilton, their slot corner signed away from the Steelers had a pick six against Ryan Tannehill last week.


Patrick Mahomes is much better than Ryan Tannehill—but the Cincy's defense won’t be a cake walk like the Steelers were last week.


The defense stepped up to allow Joe Burrow to survive a nine sack onslaught by Tennessee torture a Cincy offensive line that has been a weakness all year. No way the Kid takes that kind of beating two weeks in a row.


Coach Zach Taylor took some of the blame after the game, saying he needs to call plays that allow Burrow to get the ball out quicker—it’s on Burrow too; he has to recognize what his team’s limitations are and learn, by game time, to get rid of the damn ball. Look for less Jamar Chase on fly patterns and more crossing routes against a vulnerable Chiefs back seven.


Knowing Taylor, he will get Chase—and his 4.3 speed—into the game as much as he can. Look for Joe Mixon to exploit the KC run defense with screens as well as runs.


Rookie kicker Evan McPherson is a perfect 8-for-8 in the postseason—but if the Bengals are kicking field goals their chances of winning are slim.


We all saw what Mahomes and Coach Reid did last week to the best defense in football—but I look for DC, Lou Anamuro to blitz Mahomes a lot more from the right side. Mahomes gets antsy when defenses frustrate him.


Keep your eye on KC linebacker Melvin Ingram. He's has added some juice to the Arrowheads pass rush since coming over in a trade with Pittsburgh.


Couple weeks ago, I likened this incarnation of Striped Cats to the ’72 Steelers who gave Don Shula’s undefeated Dolphins all they could take before losing by four points.


Joe Burrow is much more advanced in his second year than Terry Bradshaw was in hid third—and it’s a new century.


I'll take the 7 points--but the Bengals win outright and go to the Super Bowl. Play the Over...


Bengals 31

Chiefs 28




San Francisco 49ers 12-7 @ Los Angeles Rams 14-5 (-3.5, 45.5) US [O]


The Niners dominated the Rams in the trenches in both games this year, and when L.A. needed to beat their most hated division rival in Week 18, they couldn’t do it.


Jimmie Garropolo has proven he can win Championship games; this will be Matt Stafford’s first bite of that big of an apple—and I think it means something at this level.


Only two words describe why I think the Gold Miners will head-butt the Big Horns into the off-season…Deebo Samuel. What a weapon this guys has become. He does it all with a combination of power and speed rarely seen in a wide receiver, masquerading as a running back—or is it the other way around—or is he a punt returner?


San Fran has the running game to dictate the terms of this matchup. The only caveat is two words on the Rams ledger—Aaron Donald. He can change any game he plays in.


We’ll see more scoring than the Sharks think and the Niners will pull off the Upset in a field-goal nail biter. Play the Over.


49ers 33

Rams 30

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