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  1. 7 points
  2. 6 points
    Hello everyone, it's been a while since I did this. I figured I had a good thing going when I did the data for 2004-2017, and I wanted to do something for other eras as well. So I'm looking back at the timespan from 1990-2003 to figure out the answers to some important questions. How did the long term starters of the era fare when their defense was above par, and when their defense was below par. I used the same methodology as the last time I did this, finding the point where the average defense lies in my selected time span. From 1990-2003, the average defense gave up about 20.3 points, about 2 points lower than modern defenses do today, so I set the breaking point at 21 points. If your defense allowed less points than that, they had a good game, if they allowed more, they had a bad game. The null hypothesis is that the average QB will win every game his defense allows less than the average amount of points, and will lose every game the defense allows greater than the average amount of points. Obviously, the data shows that this isn't true due to games where both teams score 20 or less points, and games where both teams score 21 or more points. The real percentages over this time span show that the average QB can be expected to win 74.23% of the time his defense holds up, and a mere 22.86% of the time his defense crumbles. With those numbers gathered, I looked for every QB who had at least 90 starts and put them onto the list for analysis. I added one exception who was fairly close to the amount of starts simply because he was one of the most impactful QB's of the era, and it felt wrong to leave him off the list. The reason for 90 was just because I wanted a round number, and 96 would be 6 full seasons of games, so going a little under due to injuries and such felt better than going a little over. I managed to get a list of 25 guys. Some played their entire career in the time span, some only had the tail end of their careers in there, and a few guys were just starting up. Neither Tom Brady nor Joe Montana made the list due to lack of starts in the era. I curated some games, removing starts where players only played a few snaps before getting hurt, or adding starts where they came in relief, because the place I get my data from just counts starts as the QB who plays the first snap. Anyway, let's get right into the data. First let's look at the winningest QB's of the era: https://i.imgur.com/tP5DoKU.png As you can see, there's a lot of names you'd expect at the top, Steve Young, Jim Kelly, John Elway and Brett Favre. Meanwhile the bottom is about what you'd expect as well, with Jim Everett, Jeff George, Jeff Blake and the like at the bottom. It's a good indicator, but it doesn't tell us how their defenses held up, and it's really just a blase look at things, so let's keep exploring, and see which of these guys had the best defenses. Sorted by Good Defense percentage: https://i.imgur.com/9PGxixv.png So this was something I found interesting. I was not expecting Troy Aikman to have the best defenses of the bunch, but as it turns out he just narrowly edged out Steve Young, who I was expecting to be really high up there in that regard. Despite only playing 12 games for the Ravens, Trent Dilfer has the third best defenses of the bunch, bolstered by his time in Tampa with Tony Dungy and their Tampa 2 defenses. On the other end, you've got the guys whose defenses gave up a lot of points. Jake Plummer, Jeff George, Jim Everett, and Peyton Manning who unlike those other guys managed to pull out a winning record despite his porous defenses. Jeff Blake sitting at the bottom makes a ton of sense when you realize he played for the Bengals, Saints and Cardinals, all before they got good (if they ever did). Continuing on, let's sort these guys by how they performed when the chips were down, and their defenses gave up 21+ points a game. Remember that the average win percentage in these games is a hair below 23%, so if the percentages look low, that's why. Anything above 23% is basically a passing grade in this curve. https://i.imgur.com/Shltje6.png This would be about what you'd expect. Guys like Young, Kelly and Elway cut their teeth on winning in tough situations, winning over 40% of the time. Add in Favre, Cunningham, Rich Gannon, and Steve McNair who all won over a third of the time and you have a very impressive group overall. Peyton is right behind them as well, but he boasts a 50% rate post 2004 which is insanity only matched or surpassed by one Thomas Brady. Meanwhile the bottom of the list is anchored by everyone's favourite bust, Jeff George. And lastly, what you've all been waiting for, the metric that sorts all of these numbers out nice and evenly, my derived Wins over Average stat. https://i.imgur.com/bVWC8Ae.png This was probably the biggest surprise of all for me. I was expecting this to be Steve Young when I first started this, with about a 20% it'd be Favre somehow. However Jim Kelly is the man up top, averaging an entire 2.82 wins more than the average QB would in his situation. If you want to know why the Bills went to 4 super bowls in the 90's, you don't need to look much farther than Kelly. Though he doesn't get the accolades that Marino and Elway did, there is no question that he's the superior member in the 90's. Steve Young finished a little bit behind with 2.7, Brett Favre had a very strong 2.34, and even outside of his prime years, Peyton still managed to be 2.07 wins over average. Troy Aikman may not be thought of as a good QB, since he was carried by some great teams, but he still managed to be a win above average, which places him with contemporaries like Joe Flacco and Matt Schaub. Dan Marino didn't do too hot, but considering he lost both of his pro bowl receivers in 92, it doesn't really surprise me that he's not dominating this section of the list. His prime was definitely in the 80's. Moving down the list, Trent Dilfer managed to be a shade above average, netting about .17 more wins a season than the average QB would. It's nothing impressive, and his closest contemporary in the modern era would be Alex Smith, another QB who did alright with great defenses, but Smith never lucked into a ring. Jeff Blake is our closest to average QB, netting a mere 0.01 more losses a season than the typical QB, which is virtually 0 at that point. So if you want to say you're a decent starter in this league you need to be better than Jeff Blake. Let's look at guys who are worst than Jeff Blake. Drew Bledsoe, who does pretty well in high scoring games, but vanishes in a lot of defensive struggles. Vinny Testaverde and Chris Chandler, career journeymen with long careers and stormy injury history. Jake Plummer and Kerry Collins, about half a game worse per season than average starters, started early on bad teams and have their best years cut off by the range of this sample size. Then you have the trash. Something interesting about this data set is that there are a lot of QB's with enough starts to qualify who fall well below average. In the modern era list, the only guy below average was Ryan Fitzpatrick, who journeymaned his way to starts on lots of teams. The guys here did it much the same way he did, 90's QBs had a lot looser leash it seems. Jim Harbaugh flamed out with a good Bears defense, and depsite having some of the best defenses out of all the guys on the list, he couldn't manage a .500 record. Boomer was old and miserable, and got his prime years in the 80's cut off by the sample size. His performance when his defense showed up was pathetic, even when he managed to be average when his defense didn't. Jeff George was a colossal bust and his numbers are even buoyed because he got to throw to Jerry Rice, Tim Brown, and Randy Moss in his career. Lastly the worst of the worst was Jim Everett, a guy who could barely win a third of his games. His 21-18 mark when his defense actually showed up is by far the worst I've seen thus far. He may have been on some bad teams, but that is beyond pathetic. The -1.38 WAR is also the worst mark I've seen thus far, below Ryan Fitzpatrick. --- Anyway, this was a lot of fun to make up, and I may do some more in the future, especially since certain QB's aren't represented well, or got their primes cut off by the era. The next data set would be 1978-1989, the start of the 16 game era, as well as the introduction of the Mel Blount rule. If you have any questions, want any trivia or whatever, feel free to let me know. And here is the link to my data sheet. Thanks for reading guys. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1nAyFHNzY2KESR7XK3w2IipuFW2Zc3FJKXkc7rodbIVs/edit?usp=sharing
  3. 5 points
    The hospital literally makes up costs that they then say they are charging, all so they can "cut their prices" for the insurance. When you have people who literally have to wear wristbands that say "do not call an ambulance if I have a seizure" you know how badly this country is fucked. And its annoying as hell, because somehow people blame us at the pharmacy. Your local pharmacy is not the one who sets the prices, its the insurance. I am right there with you being outraged by these prices. And by completely underhanded tactics. Here's you another example. Patient who needed an inhaler, was literally having trouble breathing right in front of me. The insurance would only cover it if it was a 30-day supply. This inhaler only came in 25 days supply, that's just how it comes. I called them on the phone to discuss the situation and try to get him something else. We wanted to swap him to a different one that does the same thing but is a 30 day supply. Not covered. Tried a different one. Not covered. At this point the pharmacist is as angry as I've ever seen him and asks what the hell they want us to do. Keep in mind each time this happened, we had hung up on them being assured it would go through if it was a 30 day supply, and then had to re-dial them after we had gotten the product out and then discovered its still not covered. They wanted us to special order yet another inhaler which is actually way more expensive BUT they have a better contract with its makers so they can cover it (that was our guess as that is the case a lot of times, they didn't exactly specify that). Since it was only made in three locations in the US, it would take at least three days to get here. Meanwhile the gentleman is still struggling to breathe. Pharmacist told them to go to hell and re-sent the claim through for the original one and manually changed the day supply on the inhaler to a 30 day one and then overrode the computer just so it would go through their systems. He got in a lot of trouble for it a couple weeks later, with a rep from the insurance company coming in to whine about it. Just another example of how fucked the insurance is in this country. OR Formulary lists. All insurance companies have a list of drugs they cover called their formulary. The insurance new year starts on July 1, so a lot of times come July 2, a lot of patients suddenly have drugs they have been getting regularly that are no longer covered. Does the insurance even bother to notify them? Of course not.
  4. 5 points
    There is no good advice in my opinion. Losing anything that meaningful is going to hurt no matter what. One thing I will say is you never regret the moments you spend with something you love. As much time as you can devote to her, do it, it will not be a regret. It may also help to be positively patient with yourself. Realize that it is going to suck and you are going to be hurt, and there is no time table for it. It will take as long as it takes for the grieving process, and there really is no arbitrary measurement for how long it takes to get over it. She truly will be in a better place. Whether that be heaven or not suffering, she will experience peace. She won't be in agony every day. I think we all have a point where suffering is no longer preferable even for those we love. The last thing is remember you were the center of her world. She loved you immensley and love will always stay with you. And do not second guess forgoing chemo. It is not a bad decision. She is going to need you and I have always found that we can learn lessons from death about a life well lived. She will pass with people around who lover and love in her heart. That is something to be revered.
  5. 5 points
    Lol. I have went to bat for you time and time again, asked people personally both in private and in threads not to be dicks to you. Said you were a good dude numerous times in the shout box that can be backed up by most regular members. You are such a pussy. Peace.
  6. 5 points
    All I've read about this is from people on both sides of the aisle virtue signaling on Quora. I find it remarkable that everyone on both sides (at least on Quora, I haven't kept up with it much in this thread) is absolutely convinced that they are 100% right and justified in their stance, and that both sides passionately play the role of victim. This is more like a soap opera than anything else. I have a hard time believing a woman would put herself on a platform like this with a false allegation but people on the left that I've read are so black and white about this issue. I still struggle to believe that people think calling those who disagree with them (or in this case say "innocent until proven guilty") bigots is productive at all. Edit: Like I said I don't pretend false accusations are common but I think this shit about women never lying about sexual assault is dumb. Statistically it's rare but when dealing with individual cases, to just throw our that possibility is absurd. I don't think we should inherently believe women but I also think sexual assault is serious enough to the point that these accusations should be heard and explored. I've seen people say there's no reason a woman would do that, that's idiotic. It's not a smart move but there are plenty of reasons. I suspect that Kavanaugh did it because he seems like a piece of shit and like I said I don't see this as a case where she'd put herself through this kind of shit storm for the sake of the Democratic party. I don't think there's very much evidence. If what I've read is true at all it's basically conservatives saying there's no evidence and thus the accusations can't be proven true, and liberals going with "gut instincts" (like in all honesty I am) in their "assessment" and saying he's a predator. Lmao, I saw some dude say his body language and facial expressions were what you'd expect of a sociopath, so clearly he did it. People like that are beyond idiotic and a prime example of the aforementioned virtue signaling I bitch about so frequently. I also think people are a lot more complex than specific moments in their life. This isn't me defending Kavanaugh, because I think I already said he seems like he's a piece of shit in real life, but more so that there's also an entire lifetime of experiences that form his identity. This is true of literally every human yet we live in a disgusting society where a metaphorical soundbyte of a person's life determines their character. If people judged me from how I was when I was abusing weed and psychotic as well (and they ACTUALLY knew who I was) they'd think I was a piece of shit yet everything else in my life reinforces I'm a morally ambiguous person that tends towards being decent. What really gets me is that I don't even think these people care. I don't think they care about Ford or Kavanaugh, or what this means for the country, I think they only see people they disagree with getting fired up and have to provide an equal and opposite force. I don't think people actually care about the MeToo movement which is unfortunate, I know some people who felt empowered by it to seek therapy to overcome that past. Seems more and more like people retweet and favorite and upvote stuff like that just so they come off as a good person on social media. It seems so fake to me. Rant over.
  7. 4 points
    Oh, so this is your fault.
  8. 4 points
  9. 4 points
    I think another thing that hasn't been mentioned but should be a gimmie here for everyone is that this guy is looking at a lifetime appointment. He should be vetted with finest of toothed Combs. Isn't that commons sense. If it's not true what's to fear from an investigation?
  10. 4 points
    Sorry, busy weekend and I just got back, we won't be doing the draft today because I still need to get the team owners settled out. I'm planning on doing the draft Wednesday at 9, if that doesn't work for anyone let me know now because we're down to the wire for getting the draft done before Thursday. As of now, the participants will be as follows: Me Ace Phil MHG BC Than F4E Ngata ATL Vin Bjorn Seanbrock Basically, it's last year's participants with Sean instead of my brother, that way we're back to just members of the board and it's a 12 team league, which I think is the ideal size. Sean has joined so at this point I'm working on getting my brother's team removed and switching F4E to a different ESPN account EDIT: Okay, so we're down to the 12 teams listed above, just waiting for F4E's new email so I can get his team updated, still looking to set the draft Wednesday at 9 ET, sorry for any confusion and inconvenience today.
  11. 3 points
    Let's hear em! CotY: Matt Nagy This one was kinda hard to figure out. Andy Reid comes to mind, as the Chiefs are 8-1, but we kinda expected the Chiefs to be good, just not this good. Nagy has done wonders as a first year HC in Chicago, and has the Bears in prime position for a playoff run. MVP(s): Drew Brees , Patrick Mahomes Right now I really can't choose between them. Here's hoping the next eight games gives me a clear answer, because these two are both fantastic. OPOY: Todd Gurley Gurley might be challenging for LT's single season TD record. He is one part of a great machine, but he does his job so well. DPOY: Khalil Mack Mack has been so disruptive over the first half of the season, he's been hurt for the past couple of games, but he's still DPOY at this point. OROY: Saquon Barkley Saquon is at worst the 2nd best player on the Giants already, halfway through his rookie year, and he is the sole bright spot for the Giants in a year that is completely lost. Get him a QB next year and the Gmen could make some noise. DROY: Donte Jackson The rookie corner out of LSU has 4 picks through 8 games and is able to cover man to man and zone, as well as stopping the run. CPotY: Andrew Luck Luck looks like his old self and is enjoying football up in Indianapolis. The Colts probably don't make the postseason this year, but get him some weapons and next year they could be a surprise team.
  12. 3 points
    Least Valuable Player: Le'Veon Bell
  13. 3 points
    Coach of the Year: Bill Belichick. What you can't give Belichick the coach of the year, he's always the best coach in the NFL, that's not fair to the other guys. Ok, let's switch things up a bit. The Coach of the Year*: Adam Gase Wow, how fucking dare I, right? Well let's face it, the Dolphins are not a talented team, and they were lauded for dumping talented players like Ndamukong Suh, Jay Ajayi and JArvis Landry for practically nothing. Is this team good? I don't think so, but this team should be Raiders or 49ers level bad this season, yet they are finding gritty ways to win games, getting the most out of ICU patient Ryan Tannehill and the meme of the century Brock Osweiler, and winning games that they probably shouldn't be. These players are buying into what Gase is giving them, and while they're a ways out of beating talented squads, they are handling themselves well. It's actually just Belichick though. Offensive Rookie of the Year: Saquon Barkley, RB, The lone bright spot on that offense, now that Eli has reverted into a captain checkdown. He's dynamic, exciting, and good to bust a big play almost every week. If he had more than one capable blocker he might be putting up Gurley type numbers if not better. Defensive Rookie of the Year: Nathan Peterman... wait shit. uh, Let's give the Browns some love, Denzel Ward, CB, There are so many good rookies that you could make a team out of them this year. Fred Warner, Darius Leonard, Derwin James, Donte Jackson, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Leighton Vander Esch, among others all have legitimate arguments for this spot, but I have to go with Ward. He's all over the place on defense, a very solid tackler, and the primary reason they won any games at all this season. The Browns might suck, but he doesn't. Comeback Player of the Year: J.J. Watt, DE, 9 sacks halfway through the season... yeah dude is back. He finally looks healthy, he's shedding offensive linemen like nothing and... Defensive Player of the Year: J.J. Watt, DE, Yeah make this a double. Watt is once again the best player on the defensive side of the ball, sorry. Offensive Player of the Year, aka the we can't give you the MVP, here have a participation trophy: Todd Gurley, RB, 1230 yards from scrimmage, 16 TDs halfway through the season, Gurley is a production machine, and the Rams are content to feed the machine. I'm looking forward to seeing him chase the non-passing TD record. The Saints did a great job stifling him though. Best Player: Drew Brees, QB, The league owes him after Peyton Manning stole his MVP award. He's also the best QB in football, which is what this award should actually be called. The Most Valuable Player to his team, but not necessarily the best player in the league, because we don't have a Most Oustanding Player award to split the difference award: Cam Newton, QB, Because fuck he deserves some credit for the work he's doing this year that gets consistently shat on and undone by his garbage coaches.
  14. 3 points
    The 5th one is me. Losing a pet is always tough, it's like getting a piece of your heart ripped out. It's best to just let the grief overtake you, let all your emotions out, and over time you remember all the good times you had with them. I've lost two cats in my life, and both of them were just total sweethearts. I get a little sad when I know that I'll never see them again, but I have so many fun memories about them that it's hard to feel depressed about it. I think I gave them happy times and they certainly made my life better for being in it. Time heals all wounds may be a cliche, but it's only that way because it's true.
  15. 3 points
    Nathan Peterman and his Merry Friends 32. Giants (1-7) Positives: Saquon Barkley is the truth, and if they gave awards to offensive linemen, Will Hernandez would be winning rookie lineman of the year and at least be in discussions for OROTY. Giving it to Saquon should be a joint award to him as well. Negatives: Basically everything else? Eli is done and the rest of that offensive line cannot pass block to save his life. The defense has some decent pieces, but Landon Collins isn't the game changing all star that they need him to be, and no one else is really stepping up in that secondary. Olivier Vernon is getting healthy though, which is a big boost. The rest of the defense is on other teams now. 31. 49ers (1-7) Positives: Uh... Some of the young defensive pieces are good? Negatives: Whew boy, was I wrong in thinking this team could do work with or without Jimmy. CJ Beathard doesn't seem like he'll ever be ready to be an NFL starter, the offensive line is weakened after they gave their best lineman to the patriots this offseason, and the defense can't make takeaways. Shanahan is going to need to find some creativity or get some help from his D if he wants to avoid drafting in the top 5 this year. 30. Cardinals (2-6) Positives: Christian Kirk is looking like a future star in this league, and Byron Leftwich through a single game is already twice the coordinator Mike McCoy ever was. Negatives; The offense is stalling out, and for a team deep in a rebuild, they don't seem to be making the moves they need to rebuild properly. The defensive players don't fit the scheme, which sucks because there is a lot of talent there. Trading guys like Deone Buccanon who don't fit the scheme would have gone a long way towards building for the Steve Wilks future... if there is one of those. 29. Raiders (1-6) Positives: This team can play hard for thirty minutes every sunday. Negatives: There are 60 minutes in a football game. 28. Browns (2-5-1) Positives: The team is incredibly talented, Baker Mayfield has more potential than any other QB the Browns have had since Tim Couch, and they just fired the losingest coach in football history (close enough). Negatives: The team drops too many passes, they traded their best player to the Patriots for nothing (sounds familiar), they're still young and get easily rattled, and QB potential is often not lived up to. I know Browns fans had hope, and even though you are making games close, you're just the same old Browns. 27. Bills (2-6) Positives: That defense is stifling and great at forcing turnovers. Negatives: This offense is stifling and great at giving up the ball. Josh Allen is about three times better than Peterman or Anderson, and he's nearly last place on my quarterback rankings. McCoy is invisible, the receivers can't get seperation, and the offensive line is held together with Dion Dawkins and 4 cardboard cutouts who can only vaguely be called linemen. Better Luck Next Year 26. Broncos (3-5) Positives: Von Miller is still a sack artist, and we finally have a running game for the first time since we fired Mike Shanahan. Negatives: Case Keenum is basically just Trevor Siemian but we paid him more, the offensive line can't figure out pass pro, and we have no run stopping power in the middle of the D. 25. Jets (3-5) Positives: When this team is hot, they can play tight against any team in the league. Negatives: About as consistent as a McDonald's Ice Cream Machine. 24. Cowboys (3-4) Positives: That defense found some fire, and that front 7 can really provide a lot of pressure. Jaylon Smith is looking every bit like a guy who should have been a first round pick. Negatives: Dak Prescott simply cannot function without elite line play and at least one receiver who can get seperation. Ezekiel Elliott is still doing fine, but it's clear this offense misses Travis Frederick. 23. Titans (3-4) Positives: This team has a lot of grit, and can win ugly if need be. Negatives: The guy who was supposed to be their franchise QB is running scared, and nobody comes back from that sort of mental damage. Another promising player wasted in Tennessee. 22. Jaguars (3-5) Positives: Not a whole lot recently. Ever since it was revealed Ted Danson was making them win games on the hit TV Show "The Good Place" they've reverted back to normalcy. Negatives: That vaunted defense is getting run over, the offense can't make plays, and they love dropping the football more than anything else. They really remind me of last year's Cowboys who just couldn't function without their star rookie back. 21. Buccaneers (3-4) Positives: The Ryan Fitzmagic cycle has helped them to a lot of wins, and pound for pound they may have the best group of receivers in the league. Negatives: That defense gets gashed open like a hemophiliac at a Michael Myers convention, the running game is pretty weak, and relying on Ryan Fitzpatrick is a recipe for disaster in this league. The Middle of the Road is the Road Less Traveled. 20. Colts (3-5) Positives: Andrew Luck is starting to shake his groove thang again. Marlon Mack, Jack Doyle and T.Y. Hilton are forming the all underrated squad in Indy. Negatives: The defense is opportunistic, but still lack the serious talent to contain top offenses. They can't be counted on to win shootouts every week. 19. Lions (3-4) Positives: The offense is looking like a complete unit, Stafford as a wily veteran gunslinger, and Kerryon Johnson provides the boom running the ball. Negatives: This secondary is too easily exposed, opposing passers can run a train on these guys, and for all the talent the offense has, they can't quite perform up to par for whatever reason. They play worse than they should be, all things considered. 18. Dolphins (4-4) Positives: They really buy into their coaches scheme, and despite being one of the least talented teams in the league, they're getting the most out of their guys. Negatives: They can't stop teams from running on them, the loss of Suh is really being felt, especially since they couldn't get a guy to replace him in the draft. The combination of Brock and Tanny at QB is also a major detriment when games start becoming do or die. 17. Falcons (3-4) Positives: Matt Ryan is making a solid case for MVP this year, keeping his team in games that his defense keep trying to take him out of. Negatives: Oh, got ahead of myself there. With most of their best players hurt on the defensive side of the ball, the gameplan is typically just survive the offensive onslaught and make sure Matt Ryan gets the ball last. 16. Texans (5-3) Positives: That defense is starting to find it's spot after a rough start to the season. J.J. Watt is starting to return to form, and if you remember, he was the best defensive player in the league in his prime. Negatives: While DeShaun Watson is hella dynamic, he is also very sack prone, and very turnover prone. Turnovers will sink any promising team, but the Texans have a fast track to the playoff race in a weak division, and being a member of the far weaker conference this year. 15. Ravens (4-4) Positives: The Ravens defense is stifling once again. Except against Cam Newton... man they did not have an answer for him and those Panther weapons. Justin Tucker is still really good, don't let that XP miss get you down. He just went from infallible god to greatest kicker you've ever seen. Negatives: Well after 8 weeks, maybe Joe Flacco is still who we thought he was? This Ravens offense has failed to impress despite big money additions to the receiving corps. Might be time to cut ties with Flacco after the season ends, and fully commit to the Lamar Jackson experiment, instead of running this wildcat bullhonky. 14. Bengals (5-3) Positives: You got to love Andy Dalton, dude just balls out every single sunday. Too bad he's still not prime time ready. Negatives: This defense is porous and playing stupid. You expect nothing less from a Marvin Lewis coached team, and if they do make the playoffs, you can guarantee an early exit. 13. Packers (3-3-1) Positives: Aaron Rodgers pretty much brings this team up 15 spots or so. Negatives: Jesus christ if they didn't have Rodgers they'd be so so bad. The coaching is disgusting, the lack of talent on defense forces so many bad situations on their end, and boneheaded plays kept them from having a chance against the Rams. At least they traded away their second biggest bonehead. To bad the biggest one is still coaching the team. Wild Cards 12. Eagles (4-4) Positives: Carson Wentz is one of the most cerebral QB's in this league, and a treat to watch every sunday. They're also really talented in the trenches, though they have taken a few hits compared to their dominance last year. Negatives: Suffering from a serious case of mental midgetry. It might be the super bowl hangover, it might be cockiness, but this team is not finishing games. The Titans out ground them, the Panthers came back from 17 down, and the Vikings did just enough to turn their chances of winning to zero with a huge 6 minute drive in the 4th. This team is a super bowl contender, but only if they figure out how to win those close battles. 11. Steelers (4-2-1) Positives: Le'Veon Bell? Who gives a shit. James Conner has slid into the role of Steelers runningback and has done it with aplomb. Like seriously, not enough people are talking about what's he's doing. Bell might be an elusive talent, but Conner is the kind of guy who you can plug in and he'll perform admirably in any system. This offense is one of the best in the league when it's on... and oh baby is it on right now. Negatives: The secondary is still really suspect, but getting Joe Haden off of injury helps a lot. He may not be an elite corner these days, but he can still dance with a teams best option and buy the defense an extra second or two every play. This team is really missing the killer instinct Ryan Shazier provided though. 10. Chargers (5-2) Positives: Philip Rivers is trying to make sure people don't forget his name. He doesn't want to be known as the third guy of that 2004 draft class, he wants to be known as the best guy. The combination of Ekeler and Gordon at runningback make their offense multi talented, and their offense is relatively scar free at this point of the season. Negatives: They're still missing their best player on defense, the mercenary Joey Bosa really gave that team a stifling pass rush, and limited opposing offenses so much. Losing Verrett hasn't been as big a loss as I would have anticipated though, they're getting some good work out of their depth corners. 9. Seahawks (4-3) Positives: A heavy focus on the run has changed this Seahawks identity from a team that needs Russell Wilson to do everything, to a team that can make Russell Wilson thrive. He's always been at his best as a highly efficient passer, and when you give him a weapon or two, he makes a huge difference. The defense is doing a great job forcing turnovers, and while no one will confuse this secondary for the Legion of Boom, they are sitting around 5th in most passing defense stats. Maybe it's time we start giving Tedric Thompson and Shaquill Griffin some noise? Negatives: It's not all sunshine and rainbows for this team, as injuries and roster turnover have depleted their front seven a fair deal. Teams can run with some effectiveness on them, and they don't match up as well against the more physical receivers. 8. Vikings (4-3-1) Positives: I talk a lot about MVP campaigns, but Adam Thielen is certainly the best guy who won't win it this year, because MVP's always go to QB's. Kirk Cousins looks electric and every bit worth what they are paying him. The third down defense has been oppressive as well, the problem is just forcing 4th downs. Negatives: Turnovers, Turnovers, Turnovers. Kirk is having a lot of fumbles this year and recovering way less than he normally would. That sort of variance tends to level out over time, but the NFL season is short and every data point matters. The kicking game cost them a few wins early in the season, but Dan Bailey seems to have alleviated those problems. The defense has also been maddeningly inconsistent. One second Harrison Smith is Thor on the field, the next he's Loki getting choked out by Thanos. The Vikings are supposed to be the Thanos of the league this season, but they've just fallen short against the real contenders. 7. Redskins (5-2) Positives: Adrian Peterson drank from the fountain of youth. Vernon Davis drank from the fountain of youth. Alex Smith... well he's been what you typically expect from Alex Smith. And that's fine. Regular Alex Smith is the kind of quarterback who wins you games in this league. The Line has been solid, Jordan Reed is healthy, the Kicker is consistent, and the coaching is on point. It's not pretty but that's how you're supposed to win games. They also have a really weak schedule to work with, but NFC East games really shouldn't count for strength of schedule because they all exist within their own chaos dimension where reality is merely a suggestion. Negatives: Speed can punish this secondary. Josh Norman is a very good corner in zones and very physical, but he can't be expected to guard the deep routes. DJ Swearinger is having a great season, but the things that make him great can make him a target in coverage as well. The addition of Ha-Ha Clinton Dix will do a lot to shore up this weakness though, and strikes me as the best move in this flurry of trade deadline moves. 6. Panthers (5-2) Positives: Cam Newton is having a great season, probably his best since his MVP run in 2015. The weapons around him may not be conventional, but they are doing work this year combining speed and elusiveness to make a sort of hydra of threats for the Carolina offense. Combined with good injury luck, and a hungry defense and you've got a recipe for a real strong team. Negatives: Coaching. There are a lot of teams with bad coaching in this league, but few consistently squander the talent around them like Ron Rivera does. Cam Newton is one of the primary playmakers in this league, and can turn a nothing play into something, but he really shouldn't be asked to do that 10+ times a game. That's no key to success. This forces a very talented team to make a lot of comebacks, or rely on big splash plays to get them out of the intelligence hole they get put into. Contenders 5. Bears (4-3) Positives: While this might seem high for the Bears, they've got a hungry defense with a nose for the ball, a QB who is playing with striking efficiency, and a two headed run game that can find daylight no matter the circumstances. This team has a good thing going on, and with a young QB who has a lot of help, you shouldn't really be surprised to see the Bears making real waves this year. Negatives: There is something intangible missing from the Bears though. Whether it's the killer instinct, the "poise" of those great teams, or just a player who can close out games on defense, it feels like they are just missing that key ingredient to take them a step forward. Whether that comes in time or not remains to be seen, but they need to find a way to close out games. They gave up a massive lead to the Packers in week 1 against a hobbled Aaron Rodgers. They had the game in their hands against Miami and blew it. They had the lead against New England, but couldn't put up enough to hold it. They can kill teams but forget to put them away and that will be a critical thing to fix in the second half of the season. 4. Saints (6-1) Positives: Drew Brees is as efficient as ever. Father Time just does not slow him down. This team's dedication and preparation on offense is unmatched. Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas are no slouches themselves, and are proving to be some of the best weapons Brees has ever had in his illustrious career. Negatives: That defense which was so stout last year seems to have taken a step back. We aren't in the worst defense in the league category anymore, like they were in the Rob Ryan era, but they are having a difficult time handling receivers, and giving up a lot of big plays. The addition of Eli Apple should diminish that a little bit, but it's hard to count on a defense when guys run all over them. 3. Chiefs (7-1) Positives: Patrick Mahomes is injecting new excitement in the NFL with every play he makes. This offense has so many weapons, so many ways of killing you, and a guy who prepares like each game is his last. There is a lot of positive to look forward to in Kansas City, and this guy is why. Even when he plays poorly he still does so much for his offense. Negatives: Like the Saints below them, the Chiefs fundamentally lack on defense. Other than handling Primetime Andy Dalton and getting a lot of fluke picks on Bortles, the Chiefs have given Case Keenum his best games of the season, let Jimmy G run wild on them, and made sure Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers and Tom Brady had their best games of the season against them, putting up tons of points and tons of yards. All of this is a recipe for disaster in the postseason, because as we all know, you need to be at least marginal on D to win a championship. Maybe they can rely on Dee Ford and Chris Jones to make important plays, but wishing for luck gives you the same odds as every other team in this league. 2. Rams (8-0) Positives: They just find ways to win. When Gurley is shut down, they go to Goff. When Goff can't make the magic happen, Gurley is there. When the defense is weak? The Special teams steps up. Aaron Donald is a force in the middle, and adding all the pieces they have to that line is just making that front really difficult to deal with. Negatives: They are going through a murderer's row of a schedule. They aren't winning games with style points unless they're beating bottom feeders, and the defense has shown it can be exploited, especially with the injuries piling up in the secondary. However, they are making a real super bowl push here, and should definitely be considered the favourites this early on. However they have the Saints, Seahawks and Chiefs right before the bye, so it'll be interesting to see if they keep their win streak going. 1. Patriots (6-2) Positives: You've got Tom Brady and you have Bill Belichick. Do I need to say anymore? They might have lost two games in September, but that's just the Patriot Way(c). Josh Gordon gives the offense an absolute playmaker over the top, and getting Edelman off suspension means no third down is safe from the Greasy Wheel. And Gronk is as unstoppable as ever. The defense seems to be clicking these past few weeks as well, getting key plays out of all sorts of players. Negatives: The run game is facing a lot of injuries with Sony Michel and Rex Burkhead both being injured. However James White was a super bowl MVP (in our hearts) two years ago, so it's not really that much of a downgrade as it is an attrition sort of thing. The Patriots still remain year in and year out, the pinnacle in the NFL and the team you need to surpass if you want a Lombardi trophy.
  16. 3 points
    After a few bumps in the road ( like having to perform the full board conversion from my phone).... We’re here! Everything is still a work in progress, so if you notice anything — no matter how big or small — say something so Vin / I can address it. One thing already on tap is a lighter skin for those of you who don’t dig the dark or default stuff. I have a 4 day weekend coming up here so that’ll hopefully be done by the end of next week! Anything else though, anything at all... let us know. See something, Say something!
  17. 3 points
    Agree with that entirely. I work in pharmacy atm and the drug prices are insane. And its honestly way worse than the average person knows. I can see the actual cost paid for the drug versus the price that is being charged to the consumer. For example, a certain diabetes medication called Enbrel, cost roughly $300. They charge $12,000 with no insurance, and even with insurance they still wanted over $5,000. If Trump can actually do something about the ridiculous prices, that is a serious win in my book.
  18. 3 points
    I don't think that's the heart of the issue. Considering the largest state in the country has less than a 2% difference between their population and electorate power. The bigger problem in my mind is that 48 of our states are "all or nothing". Theoretically, if Stevo and I are running for President -- Stevo can beat me in California 51 - 49 and he gets all 55 votes from California. Conversely, I could beat Stevo in Texas 50 - 50 (by a single vote) and take all 34 of their votes. EDIT: Nebraska and Maine. Each state gives 2 votes to the winner of the popular vote, than an extra vote for each winner of the individual congressional districts. Not saying we all should even do that. Could just lead to even more gerrymandering. Could make it a straight percentage though. If you win 55% of the vote, you get 55% of the electoral votes or some such system.
  19. 3 points
    I mean that's one take for sure, but the other take is that you prevent politicians from serving Regional interests of Big state's such as New York, California, Texas, and a few others. It was designed so that you could not win an election off of four states, or the most populous states in the future. Which I think is a good idea.
  20. 3 points
    That was in a game that matters. You'll find the Falcons specialize in games that don't.
  21. 2 points
    Prepare to rustle your jimmies, it's gonna be a blowout. 44 14
  22. 2 points
    Jeff Sessions steps down as Attorney General (at Trumps request)... Let's hope Chris Christie isn't bumbling around in the shadows.
  23. 2 points
    Alright, we have come to the halfway point in the 2018 NFL season, (already?), and the elites are beginning to separate themselves from the pack. I think we have a clear top echelon of teams, and some of the early season surprises are fading back into their usual selves. We have a juicy matchup between #1 and #2 this week (spoiler alert), so lets get right down to it. Largest Risers: PIT Steelers (+11), HOU Texans (+9), LA Chargers (+8), NE Patriots (+8) Largest Fallers: JAX Jaguars (-16), TEN Titans (-16), CHI Bears (-8), DEN Broncos (-8) Top Ten Matchups: #1 LA Rams @ #2 NO Saints, #10 GB Packers @ #3 NE Patriots 1. (8-0) (-): LA pulled one out they probably deserved to at least sweat on a bit more. Aaron Rodgers getting the ball with 2 minutes and a timeout only needing a FG is not a situation any defense wants to be in. The Rams are built from top to bottom for success and they are rolling. A huge, potential homefield deciding matchup is up next versus the only other team in football riding a six game winning streak. 2. (6-1) (+7): Nawlins defense has vastly improved since the first few weeks of the season and Drew Brees is not even having to strain himself sometimes to win games. They got a bit lucky last week versus Baltimore, but even so the worst case there is they go to OT. Soundly defeating Minny on their own turf after narrowly taking one also on the road versus Baltimore is a pair of games the Saints really love to come out 2-0 from, especially with a showdown versus the Rams up next. 3. (6-2) (+8): Tom Brady continues to defy Father Time, and yet another year is upon us where the Patriots will cruise to an AFC East title and a likely first round bye. It's easy to be ho-hum about what NE has done, but its honestly incredibly impressive in a league built for parity. 4. (7-1) (-2): The Chiefs Patrick Mahomes is doing incredible things in what is basically his rookie season as a starter, but KC's defense is what brings them down a notch. Versus the Patriots, Mahomes and co. put up 40 points... and still lost. It's hard to win in January with that kind of defense. They looked a lot better versus Cincy last Sunday night, and then held off Denver today. 5. (5-2) (+1): Carolina's dominating win versus Baltimore was simply a great four quarters of football after two straight weeks failing miserably in the first couple of quarters and then trying to mount a comeback, once successfully, and once failing in the opponent's redzone. If Cam plays like he did versus the Ravens formerly #2 overall passing defense, Carolina can beat anyone in the league. But he has to play that well consistently. Christian McCaffrey is a huge weapon in all phases of the game, and it's good to see DJ Moore finally getting some touches in the wake of the Torrey Smith injury. 6. (5-2) (+7): Washington is a very quiet 5-2, with a 1.5 game lead on the Eagles in the NFC East. Alex Smith has been effective, but its Adrian Peterson who is the surprise, looking like a much younger version of himself. He is at least top-5 in rushing yards in the NFL, and looks rejuvenated in Washington. 7. (4-3-1) (+7): The Vikes just got beat by the Saints, but overall in their last four games they have gone 3-1. The NFC North is absolutely up for grabs and I think this is the best team in it. Props to Adam Thielen, who is the first WR in NFL history to start a season with 8 straight 100 yard receiving games. 8. (5-2) (+8): The Chargers are certainly large risers since the quarter point, riding a 4 game winning streak. Rivers has been quietly having a fantastic year and LAC looks poised to make a run in the AFC. They have lost only to the Rams and the Chiefs, but they have also beaten mainly bad teams, with their best win probably being the W versus the Titans. 9. (4-2-1) (+11): Pittsburgh has re-taken their spot as perennial AFC North contenders, winning three straight since the quarter mark to put themselves in first place in the division. LeVeon Bell still hasn't played a snap and James Connor has made that not matter one bit. 10. (3-3-1) (-): Green Bay is at .500 after seven games, and right in the thick of things in the AFC North, only a half-game out of the lead. As they unquestionably have the best QB in the division, everything is right in front of them. They need to put that huge mistake by Ty Montgomery that likely cost them the game versus LAR behind them, and focus on the Patriots. 11. (4-3) (-8): Chicago looked good versus the Jets with a 24-10 victory to get back on track. This team had lost two in a row, including one to Brock Osweiler and the Dolphins, (what). Mack has been a godsend on defense, but even without him versus NYJ, the Bears still pulled out the W. 12. (5-3) (-5): Cincy's defense got absolutely roasted by the Chiefs on Sunday Night football, and then they nearly let Fitzmagic steal a win versus the Bucs. I get that they're 5-3, but this just feels like deja vu all over again. Cincy is going to sneak into the postseason in all likelihood, merely to end up as fodder for the big dogs once again. 13. (4-4) (-5): Back to back losses to the NFC South really hurts Baltimore. They never really had a shot versus Carolina mostly due to turnovers removing any shot at a comeback, but Tucker's first career missed XP was huge versus New Orleans. Baltimore needs to regroup with a rematch versus Pitt coming up, a game they absolutely must have. 14. (4-3) (+4): Only a close loss against the top team in football prevented the Hawks from winning 5 straight. They are looking good, though they are in a loaded NFC and will need to play like they have recently in order to make the postseason. Russell Wilson is playing some fantastic football, and David Moore has stepped up big time recently with four Tds in his last three games to give the Hawks offense some life. 15. (4-4) (-3): Philly needed that win in London to stop the bleeding after blowing a 17-0 lead to Carolina the previous week. The Eagles sit at .500 after 8 weeks, and that seems like a good place for them to be. They certainly look nothing like the defending champions, but only a game and a half back from the division leaders means they still have plenty of time to turn this around. Given the loaded NFC, I doubt a wildcard comes from the East, so a division title is likely necessary to make the postseason. 16. (5-3) (+9): Houston has made a large leap forward, winning four straight to advance to 5-3 which gives them a 1.5 game lead on the Titans in the AFC South, and Houston has looked like the best team in that division for the past few weeks. 17. (3-4) (+2): Dallas' defense is playing very well, one of the best in the NFC in terms of yards and points, but their offense is flat out stuck in neutral. I know a lot of the blame always falls on the QB, but Dak has no weapons to throw to outside of Cole Beasley and Elliot out of the backfield. The midseason trade to get Amari Cooper may have been a hefty price, but the Boys can absolutely compete in the East if they can just get some offense going. 18. (3-4): (+3): Atlanta is looking up at both Carolina and the Saints in the NFC South, three games back from the lead. They absolutely must take the next two matchups versus those division rivals to have any shot at climbing back into this one. 19. (3-4) (+5): Detroit has won 2 of their last three games, but losing to Seattle hurts. It was a game the Lions really needed to take, though with the NFC North all neck and neck, they are still in prime position to make a run. 20. (3-4) (-16): Tennessee had a great shot at taking a game from the Chargers in London, but couldn't quite seal the deal. The run-game has got to step up for the Titans to take some of the pressure off of Mariota's shoulders. 21. (3-5): (-16): There was a lot of talk about the Jags finishing what they missed out on last year. I think they forgot the NFL never gives you anything. Losers of four straight, Jacksonville is in full blown desperation mode, looking up at both the Titans and Texans in the AFC South. 22. (3-5) (+4): The AFC South comes in nearly all back to back, as the Colts find themselves right back in the thick of things at 3-5. Only two games behind Houston, the Colts could easily storm right back into the division race. 23. (3-5): (-8): Denver is likely out of things at the midway point, losers of three of their past four and simply too far back to catch Los Angeles and KC, especially with the latter having two wins in head to head matchups. 24. (4-4) (-7): Losers of 3 of their last four, the Fins do boast an OT win over the Bears. But this team has an easy schedule and will probably end up 8-8 or even 9-7 despite not being all that good. Some of the pieces are there for future seasons, but at least one of those pieces wants out in a bad way. 25. (3-4) (-3): Fitzmagic returned on Sunday versus the Bengals, but it wasn't quite enough to dig the Bucs out of the four-INT hole that Winston had put them in. It will be very very interesting to see if Tampa gives Winston a $20 million/year contract in the offseason, and I'm unsure how much less than that he would take. 26. (3-5) (+2): New York has played some really good games, (the absolute dismantling of Denver comes to mind), and some really bad ones. They're not going to be going to the postseason this year, but Sam Darnold gives them promise for the future. Get the man some weapons and let him see what he can do. 27. (2-5-1) (-4): Cleveland has at least been very entertaining this season, though Sunday's domination by Pittsburgh showed this team still has quite a ways to go to be competitive. Baker Mayfield is electric, the Browns might want to try to move Tyrod to get some compensation for him. Jacksonville might be interested. 28. (2-6) (+2): Buffalo's season is toast at the midway point, they need to just let Josh Allen let it rip for the rest of the season and see what they've got at this point. 29. (2-6) (+3): Arizona has won two games, but both of them were against the Niners, who are bringing up the rear in our midseason power rankings. Josh Rosen has been up and down as a rookie starter, but he essentially just has Larry Fitzgerald and David Johnson as weapons on offense. 30. (1-6) (+1): Oakland fell to the Colts in a high scoring affair, another game where the Raiders could have used the services of Khalil Mack. However it is tough to imagine one DE being able to turn this team into a contender, so perhaps Gruden is right not to overpay for him when the Raiders need a rebuild before being a viable contender. Getting a first round pick for Amari Cooper honestly seems like a good trade to me, I don't think he was playing up to his first round status. 31. (1-7) (-5): The Giants played Carolina tough, but outside of that one offensive attack, their offense has been extremely stagnant save for OBJ making insane catches and Saquon Barkley trying his best to win his team the game single handed. Barkley has been amazing, but when your QB can't get anything going at all, it's hard for a RB to carry the team. This should probably be Eli's last year. 32. (1-7) (-3): San Fran's season went into the tank with Jimmy G's injury, and now you almost want to lose a lot of games to give him some more help next season. They played GB competitive on Monday Night, which was a surprise, but they simply dont have the talent to compete every week.
  24. 2 points
    Heading into these next elections, stopping the endless wars and covert (and not so covert) regime change tops my list of important positions. Get Tulsi Gabbard to run and that’d be a good start to your coalition.
  25. 2 points
    Also to be clear, even if the rape accusations are 100% fake (which seems incredibly unlikely), he still has 0 business being on the Supreme Court.