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Post 18 Jan 2015, 10:36 pm

Back to back NFC Championships and both super exciting games to watch.

It looked like it was over, it looked like too little too late, but then at the very end they're victorious, looking like champions ready for the Super Bowl.

You're going to want to watch the highlights a couple times over. What a game for the ages.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GDUzDIgrJg

And the Patriots? Clinical perfection, not terribly fun to watch, but wow did they score and thoroughly put the Colts away. Even money this Super Bowl. Two great teams both capable of winning, should be a crowd pleasing playoff of playoffs.
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Post 27 Jan 2015, 11:43 pm

I've seen the line as high as Pats -2, actually. Should definitely be an interesting game though. Seattle trying to go back to back, which would leave Pete Carroll with two college titles and two in the pros, and the Seattle defense has a spot in the "best defense ever" conversation.

On the other hand, Brady and Belichick go for #4 and pretty much cement themselves in their respective best ever conversations as well.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 7:02 am

Best Ever Defense?
Not yet, You still need to pass the 70's Steelers, the 1985 Bears, The Purple People Eaters, and even the Ravens 2000 super bowl team (they had no offense, Trent Dilfer won the Super Bowl???). But yes, you can add them to the conversation for certain.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 8:59 am

Well that's why I said they would have a spot in the conversation.

It's always hard to compare teams across eras, but winning back to back super bowls with the parity in the league today would be extremely impressive. Especially if it's on the back of a dominant defense, with the rules changing the way they are. Imagine this Seahawks defense if they could play with the rules of the 60s and 70s??

Not to mention, IF (a big if) they win on Sunday in a fashion resembling how they won last year, that would be back to back beatdowns of Peyton Manning and Tom Brady...not sure any of those older defenses won consecutive championships against guys like that.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 11:34 am

Your "imagine if" scenario could just as easily work against you. Defenders now are not as tough and don't do what was once done, if their current "finesse" game would likely allow offenses to score more!? Just as the older players playing now would be flagged for dozens upon dozens of penalties and could not play the receivers like today's players. It's simply something that can not be compared.

Take your what if and turn it around,
Put the Steel curtain defense in a game today, playing under the old officiating rules and they would shut down everyone. The Hawks in the 70's playing under the 70's rules would get crushed as well! Flip the rules and you have a different story.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 12:21 pm

Not to mention the vaunted defense of the 2014 Bills!
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 6:15 pm

I wonder how deflate gate will impact the Pat's mental game ... quarterbacking takes such mental discipline and if Brady is feeling guilty about something (such as lying or throwing an equipment staffer under the bus) or if he's pissed at Belichick, that distraction may make all the difference. I live just a few miles from Gillette Stadium deep in Patriots' territory so I'll be rooting for them anyway.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 7:52 pm

GMTom wrote:Your "imagine if" scenario could just as easily work against you. Defenders now are not as tough and don't do what was once done, if their current "finesse" game would likely allow offenses to score more!? Just as the older players playing now would be flagged for dozens upon dozens of penalties and could not play the receivers like today's players. It's simply something that can not be compared.

Take your what if and turn it around,
Put the Steel curtain defense in a game today, playing under the old officiating rules and they would shut down everyone. The Hawks in the 70's playing under the 70's rules would get crushed as well! Flip the rules and you have a different story.


I don't see how their "finesse" game would allow offenses to score more. What do you mean exactly when you say defenders aren't as tough as they once were? Teams used to run more, sure. Maybe you can argue defenses are worse against the run today. That doesn't usually result in more points. Scoring is way, way up in the NFL these days..that's not a coincidence. Pretty much directly correlated to more passing.

Playing defense in the NFL is extremely hard right now. The rules are in a transitional period where most players still grew up learning to play a very different way than how they're told to play now as pros. You've been able to see teams get better at it the last few years, but it's obviously still tough. The league is blatantly morphing its game into an offensive game, and it's not just because of concussion research. It's also because of fantasy football, ratings, scoring, money.
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Post 28 Jan 2015, 7:53 pm

Ray Jay wrote:I wonder how deflate gate will impact the Pat's mental game ... quarterbacking takes such mental discipline and if Brady is feeling guilty about something (such as lying or throwing an equipment staffer under the bus) or if he's pissed at Belichick, that distraction may make all the difference. I live just a few miles from Gillette Stadium deep in Patriots' territory so I'll be rooting for them anyway.


Possibly, but I doubt it. I bet it's more likely this is serving to even further motivate the Pats.
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 6:57 am

I was really just watching for the ads, but that was one heck of a game. The end, the high with that unbelievable on the ground catch, and then the low with that interception. Man, that's exactly what you want from the big game.
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 8:55 am

geojanes wrote:I was really just watching for the ads, but that was one heck of a game. The end, the high with that unbelievable on the ground catch, and then the low with that interception. Man, that's exactly what you want from the big game.


Yeah, amazing game ... except you mixed up the high and the low.
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 9:11 am

defensive backs today are much more finesse players than they were in the past. Back "in the day" they would be far more aggressive, contact was not limited to 5 yards only either. Today's defenders would be lost trying to cover receivers. But yesterday's defenders would be lost trying to cover today's receivers as well. I think the best of each era would do well enough and would adjust to the play of the day but in general, both would suffer since that
s simply how they developed their game, what worked for a 70's DB would not work for a 2015 DB and vice-versa. It's just how things are and comparing is really impossible. To claim someone from this era or that would do even better in a different time is almost certainly wrong!
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 12:02 pm

I am quite certain that if you put a NFL player from today in a time machine and sent them back to the 70s they would find things much, much easier. Today's athletes are bigger, stronger, faster. There were only a few 300 pound lineman in the 70s. Imagine one of these lineman from the 70s trying to block a 350 pound defensive tackle. There was no Randy Moss, a 6'4 wide receiver running a 4.3 40 with over 40 inch vertical (or Calvin Johnson) No even thinks of making these comparisons in track and field because you can easily compare times (no one asks whether Usain Bolt is a better sprinter than Jesse Owens, for example). Athletic accomplishment has been progressing over time--maybe at a certain point it will reach a plateau and maybe you could compare athletes or teams from different eras, but that point was certainly not reached in the 70s in the NFL.
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 12:16 pm

The interception was interesting. Of course, Seattle gets second-guessed but it resulted from earlier mistakes in the drive. Seattle had to burn 2 time-outs so they only had one left. This meant if they ran it and were stopped they would have to use their final time-out. Then anything goes wrong--fumbled snap, sack, player tackled in bounce they're in trouble. I think only having one time-out influenced that call and that was the result of carelessness with their time-outs. They have two time-outs and they're running the ball.
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Post 02 Feb 2015, 1:22 pm

It absolutely had everything to do with the play call! But even so, they had enough time for maybe 3 plays (and 3 downs) but only one time out. Why not go with the highest percentage play and run it with either Lynch or a QB keeper. If they miss, then call a time out and then go with the two passes?

By running the pass play first they face a possible sack or interception.
The interception ends the game but even a sack would have taken more time off as well as requiring that time out and your run option is gone as well. It simply made zero sense!

and I don't buy the players today doing better yesteryear. Yes they are bigger and more athletic, if you could retrain them a few years, sure they may then be better. But they would need to adjust to a different game they simply are not used to! Plugging in Richard Sherman into the 70's may not result in him dominating as you assume he would.