Gridiron Gentlemen Super Fun Prediction League: Week 16

Our regular post writer is currently buried under a pile of wrapping paper and Santa costumes so this week we have our free agency pick up who sadly cannot update you on who is leading, though it probably is still Dan. So week 15 eh? Was quite a week of games and all stories dominated by the tiff and subsequent helmet clash between Josh Norman and Odell Beckham Jr. And this being Christmas eve on a Thursday means we’re all going to be too excited to sleep because of the clash between the children’s Christmas nightmare that is Boltman and his Chargers, and the Oakland Raiders.

San Diego Chargers @ Oakland Raiders

The Raiders had a spirited comeback against the Packers last week and Derek Carr may find it a bit easier this week against a surprisingly poor Chargers secondary. Saying that the Chargers come off an emotional home win against the Dolphins, with Danny Woodhead having a career game. This may be emotional and fired up game again.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Raiders Raiders Raiders Raiders  Raiders  
41 – 21 35 – 32 30 – 19 35 – 28    

Washington Redskins @ Philadelphia Eagles

A dominant solid performance from Washington over the Bills showed that there is one team in the NFC East that wants to give the play-offs a go. The Eagles are a game behind but are too hit and miss at the moment, losing heavily to the strong Cardinals. Cousins does like to throw picks so the Eagles defence could keep them in the game but the Washington secondary has been surprisingly strong and for a while even kept LeSean McCoy quiet.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Washington Washington Washington Washington  Washington  
35-21 28 – 27 31 – 20 21 – 14    

Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons

The Panthers lost a lot of neutral fans last weekend with their antagonistic behaviour towards the Giants especially Josh Norman to Odell Beckham Jr. Having built up a lead, the Giants then fought back to draw the game, with the Panthers relying on a field goal to seal it. The Falcons and Matt Ryan managed to stop Julio Jones TD drought against a strong Jaguars team, having a performance and a win to show there is still some life in Atlanta. This could be another claws, fur and feathers flying game and closer than it was two weeks ago.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Panthers Panthers Panthers Panthers  Panthers  
42-17 32 – 14 38 – 17 30 – 10    

 

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens

Big Ben and the Steelers offence broke the Denver No Fly Zone with 380 yards and three touchdowns. This game is a bit different even though it is a divisional game. The Ravens lost despite limiting Alex Smith, that well known pass machine, to 171 yards. Clausen showed that he could pass, totaling 281 yards against a strong Chiefs defense. The Steelers secondary looked a bit shaky in the first half against the Broncos so Aiken could get a few touchdowns, but Charcandrick West did run over the Ravens, so DeAngelo Williams could have a lot of fun. And the Steelers have not just Antonio Brown, but Martavis Bryant and Markus Wheaton to play merry havoc with a poor Ravens secondary.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Steelers Steelers Steelers Steelers  Steelers  
42 – 16 28 – 21 31 – 16 41 – 9    

Dallas Cowboys @ Buffalo Bills

These are two teams that are down in the dumps. The Bills have lost two on the trot, the Cowboys are on a losing streak, though an improved performance against the Jets meant they only lost by a field goal. The Bills with Tyrod Taylor making two TD passes to the too good for that team, Sammy Watkins made a spirited comeback against Washington. LeSean McCoy couldn’t get going and was then forced from the game with a knee injury, Taylor over threw passes and generally at times the Bills were a mess. The Cowboys d kept them in the game and will look to do the same again against the Bills. Both teams need a win here if only for morale, with play-off hopes now long gone.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo  Buffalo  
17 – 14 28 – 17 27 – 14 24 – 10    

San Francisco 49ers @ Detroit Lions

Blaine Gabbert continued to throw interceptions in the 49ers loss to the Bengals, but on the plus side the 49ers did put up 14 points which is some sign of life on that offence, though it was in garbage time. The Lions enjoyed success against the Saints in a wonderful high scoring game with 3 TD passes apiece for Stafford and Brees. Stafford threw to near perfection and made most of short passing for scores. And if this is repeated with the same kind of rallying around our QB performance, the 49ers could be facing a heavy defeat.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Detroit Detroit Detroit Detroit  Detroit  
21 – 17 24 – 17 35 – 13 27 – 9    

 

Cleveland Browns @ Kansas City Chiefs

The Browns were brought back to earth by a growing in strength and confident Seahawks team though they were at times able to move the ball, even with the run. The Chiefs, mainly through the defence, breezed passed the Ravens. The Browns are again up against a tough team inclined to take interceptions that come their way. Alex Smith may not need to pass much again.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs  Chiefs  
28 – 10 32 – 16 31 – 17 31 – 6    

Indianapolis Colts @ Miami Dolphins

This is quite a tough one to call. Both teams are comping off defeats though the Colts stayed in the game all the way through against the Texans, in a game dominated by poor drives, field goals and a touch down a piece. The Dolphins scored but had no answer to Danny Woodheads career game. Two teams that have problems, mainly through different personnel questions. Andrew Luck may be back for this game, the Colts still in with a chance to make the play-offs.

 

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Indianapolis Indianapolis Miami Indianapolis  Indianapolis  
19 – 13 28 – 24 23 – 13 21 – 14    

New England Patriots @ New York Jets

This could be an interesting game. The Patriots are still missing players and have found their grove again even if against slightly easier competition. The Jets are on a role, even squeezing out a tight and messy victory against the Cowboys. Fitzpatrick will have to find Decker and Marshall faster than he has done in the last two games and the Jets defense cannot give away many penalties against a still weakened Patriots offence who seem to be starting to bond together again, especially with Gronk being back. This could be a shoot out or a defensive grind. The Patriots are still vulnerable.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Patriots Jets Patriots Patriots  Patriots  
17 – 14 30 – 28 21 – 17 31 – 17    

 

Chicago Bears @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 

Well the Bears crashed down to earth a bit with a definitive loss to the Vikings and Bridgewater’s total of 5 TDs. Cutler threw an interception and lost a fumble, the offense really causing the problems for the Bears and even the best defensive efforts could not stop Bridgewater’s clinical throws once they were in field position. The Bucs lost to the Saints in a mistake riddled game, including defensive penalties and a slight inability of the offense to move the ball at times. They did come back from a 14 point deficit but failed to convert a drive into anything but a punt with 5 minutes remaining and could not get the ball back there after. This could be a difficult game for both teams to win and probably for fans to watch.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Tampa Bay Tampa Bay Tampa Bay Tampa Bay  Tampa Bay  
31 – 20 28 – 21 28 – 21 27 – 17    

Houston Texans @ Tennessee Titans

The Texans took the lead at least rather than control of the AFC South with a nervy win against the Colts. TJ Yates went off and Brandon Weedon came on to throw the Texans only TD. Alfred Blue ran through a continuing to be porous Colts defense. The Titans were comprehensively beaten by the Patriots but you know Mariota had moments and they did at least post points on the board, with Delanie Walker making it count and the Titans a bit more than just a turn up for the sake of it type team. The Titans may have a bit of a more functional offense than the Colts purely because they have their starter but teams can pass and run through them, expect more of the same this week.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Texans Texans Texans Texans  Texans  
31 – 10 24 – 17 21 – 17 19 – 14    

 

Jacksonville Jaguars @ New Orleans Saints

We all were a bit high on the Jaguars and then they concede touchdowns early on in their loss to the Falcons. Bortles and the team did well to pull the game back but it was all too little to late. Brees controlled the game against the Bucs and threw himself further into the record books with TD passes to Marques Colston and connecting for 122 yards with Willie Snead. It’s the young gun vs the old master. This could be high scoring and weirdly we all still have faith in this new look won’t lose so easily Jags team.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Jaguars Jaguars Jaguars Jaguars  Saints  
48 – 42 24 – 21 42 – 35 31 – 24    

 

Green Bay Packers @ Arizona Cardinals

This game could easily decide seeding rank in the NFC. The Packers had a scare against the Raiders, but the defense stepped up. The Arizona Cardinals looked complete and in control against an Eagles team whose plays appeared to be as easily read as a Spot the Dog book (according to James in the Cellar). This could be a defensive battle, as both Rodgers and Palmer look uneasy if harried early on. Both teams may look to the run game more.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals  Cardinals  
35 – 31 31 – 27 31 – 17 35 – 31    

Detroit Lions @ Seattle Seahawks

Russell Wilson and the Seahawks go from strength to strength each week and are on a roll for the play-offs. Another complete performance on both sides of the ball they were not worried by the Browns at all. Matt Stafford is looking more like the QB we have seen in previous seasons and the Lions offense has finally started to click, with Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah adding more diversity in both the rush and pass game. It’s lovely to see Stafford actually targeting more folk and his two short TD passes to Golden Tate encapsulated the good feeling this team now seems to be showing on the field. Could be good fun and interesting to watch.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Seattle Seattle Seattle Seattle  Seattle  
24 – 10 28 – 17 27 – 18 21 – 9    

 

New York Giants @ Minnesota Vikings

The Giants were in a grudge match against the Panthers but of all teams to find their run game against, the Giants Rashard Jennings managed it against a very fiery Panthers defense. Eli threw his customary interception but actually connected well with Odell Beckham. Whom the Giants are without against the Vikings as his suspension has been upheld. Bridgewater had a near perfect game against the Bears and the Vikings are looking good both sides of the ball and do not have to rely on Peterson for all their yards. As Cam ran against the Giants, Peterson should be able to mirror and exceed such performance. Newton also passed easily against the Giants, Bridgewater may have a harder time, but the Vikings do have a stacked offence with Stephon Diggs, Zach Line and Jerrick McKinnon giving him goal line options.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Minnesota Minnesota Minnesota Minnesota  Minnesota  
31 – 17 27 – 17 24 – 17 24 – 17    

Cincinnati Bengals @ Denver Broncos

This is a right battle of the backups: McCarron vs Osweiler. Difference here is that the Bengals won with their new starter under center last week where as the Broncos No Fly Zone were definitely owned by the Big Ben and Antonio Brown. There is no doubt the Bengals had the easier match up but McCarron looked good and the offence seemed to adapt nicely, Jeremy Hill punching over for short range touchdowns, so the Bengals had no difficulty in scoring as long as they could get down the field. Even with Tyler Eifert out they seem to be able to move the ball. Osweiler did not have one of the best games but did pull the Broncos back into the game. This is going to be a grindout between two of the leagues best defenses.

Dan Duncan Simon James Dylan Alex
Cincinnati Cincinnati Denver Cincinnati  Denver  
17 – 14 21 – 20 21 -20 23 – 19    

Please note that both James and Duncan wrote down their scores and predictions before the podcast as both were not on it. So the similarity in choices is that great minds think alike but fools seldom differ.

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Merry Christmas!