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Week 16 Insights

Browns @ Packers

Packers still have serious issue defending against mobile quarterbacks, let alone outside runs. Cleveland’s been able to run the ball at will.

Allen Lazard may be a vector for this offense.

Preston Smith impacted the game on 3-4 different occasions. Rashan Gary, on the other hand, was barely seen. I thought his snap count may have been limited, but it turns out he’s only been in the game two snaps less than Preston.

Colts @ Cardinals

Back-to-back offsides calls. Vance Joseph’s coaching is going to be called into question here.

Chandler Jones is such a difference maker. Truly elite.

Neither Carson Wentz nor Kyler Murray have shown much this evening. It’s fair to say neither contribute much to the success of their offense lately. Especially disappointing to say that about Kyler given all the success he experienced early in the season. But as the season wears on him and without the one receiver capable of winning contested catches, Murray has lost that early-season magic.

No team has hit Jonathan Taylor for negative yardage more than Arizona this season. It’s clear the Cardinals are amped for this game, though to be fair…Indianapolis is missing 80% of their offensive line.

Indianapolis was down four of its starting offensive linemen and still adjusted masterfully. Rolling pockets, play-action fakes, short hitch routes….all these things helped the Colts keep the ball moving on offense. Arizona’s defense needs to be ashamed of itself.

Speaking of which…so many penalties were charged to Arizona’s defense, helping to sustain Colt drives. Not good for a team supposedly bound for the playoffs.

Rams @ Vikings

My suspicions of Matthew Stafford being cripplingly dependent on Cooper Kupp hasn’t been alleviated at all today. And I’m still not sure OBJ can step up. He ran a nice route for a late-game touchdown, but his presence in the game has been otherwise muted.

Bills @ Patriots

Bills defense has keyed in on some of the Patriots offensive concepts.

New England has some of the best drawn run plays I’ve seen this season.

Second Patriot drive and New England seems more intent on now passing the ball. However, Mac Jones low pass was tipped for the interception, killing the drive.

Excellent trick, fooling the Patriots offsides on a fourth-down so as to make the down that much more manageable.

Crossing routes are killing New England’s corners. New England even tried to be cute on one play, stationing defenders in man coverage with no safety over top. Of course, a defensive back would roll out to safety after the ball is snapped, but at that point, it’s too late….Stefon Diggs worked his way up the seam and to the end zone. New England may this this trickery is absolutely key, but Josh Allen and Brian Daboll have played them way too much at this point to fall for their ruses.

On top of that, New England’s linebackers have been a liability. Buffalo took advantage of their fairly slow linebacking corps.

This was Josh Allen’s best game of the season, hands down. It’s clear Buffalo came into this affair with a purpose.

Amazing to think a Belichick-led team can be as lazy as the one that showed up today. Even the greatest of coaches can only coax so much will from their men. But the strangest thing about this is that the Patriots are coming off a loss. Buffalo is coming off a weak win over the Panthers while New England was reeling from a primetime loss. But the Patriots came into this contest just convinced their base plays would be sufficient enough to defeat the Bills once more. I suppose when analyzing level of effort in division rematches, I need to take into account the magnitude of victory from the first contest.