Kupp phenomenon, the Rams beat Seattle. Packers and Chiefs, good signs

Day 15 ended with two postponements for Covid. LA has the division in his pocket after the success on the Seahawks. Phila overtakes Washington. The kicker problem and the absurd choices of the coaches: the balance of the fourth to last round of the regular season

Massimo Oriani

The endless 15th NFL day, which opened last Thursday, has finally closed with the two postponements of last night forced by Covid. The Rams, while not convincing, beat Seattle 20-10 with the usual extraordinary Cooper Kupp: 9 receptions (new season record of the franchise, surpassed Isaac Bruce), 136 yards and the only two td of the angelini. The NFC West, especially after the resounding knockout of the Cards in Detroit, now seem to have it in their pockets. Philadelphia gets rid of the remains of Washington (27-17), forced to field a qb, Garrett Gilbert, signed a few days by the Patriots practice squad having lost his to Covid. Excellent performance by Jalen Hurts (2 td), Miles Sanders (131 yards on the run) and Dallas Goedert (7 receptions for 135 yards). And tomorrow night we start with the 16th day, the third to last of the regular season, with a very gluttonous Titans-49ers.

damn brains

Analytics. A word that is ruining US sport. Four nerds still with juvenile acne who sit in front of a pc and decide what is the best strategy to adopt on the pitch. People who at most football (but also for baseball and basketball) played it on the Playstation. Here then is that Brandon Staley instead of kicking 3 very feasible field goals (two even less than an extra point) thinks well of playing the hand three quarters down, leaving 9 points on the plate in a game lost of 6 with the Chiefs by his Chargers. Or that even John Harbaugh, not content with having failed the experiment against Pittsburgh, goes for the two-man transformation against the Packers and loses again. With Green Bay there is a little more justification. There were 42 ”and Aaron Rodgers on the other side. But there are choices that leave us purists and traditionalists much more than perplexed.

kicker

Why doesn’t a billionaire league, where every win or defeat have a crazy specific gravity, provide an extra seat on the roster for a reserve kicker? It seems impossible for a team to show up without the kicking specialist because he got hurt in the warm-up (specifically Zane Gonzalez of the Panthers) and has to give up trying to field goals or extra points in the game. But what if it happens in the playoffs? Or at the Super Bowl? Mah… It is also true that maybe the punter – not exactly overworked during the week – could learn to kick the placed ones as well. We do not ask him to be Adam Vinatieri, it would be enough that at least he managed to raise the oval, which in the improvised auditions in the Buffalo-Carolina pregame none of the “competitors” of this absurd reality show was able to do.

mvp

All season we wandered in search of an mvp. Maybe now we have found it. Jonathan Taylor of the Colts. Check out the stats of the last 6 running backs who won it (Adrian Peterson, LaDainian Tomlinson, Shaun Alexander, Marshall Faulk, Terrell Davis and Barry Sanders): the Indy star, formerly of Wisconsin, will overtake them all, without counting the match in addition, number 17. Obviously, the Colts will have to keep winning otherwise the concept of most valuable falls away.

covid

It is difficult to evaluate many performances given the havoc of the rosters made by Covid. We hoped to have turned in this direction, but instead we are back in full force. The Browns’ defeat on Monday at home to the Raiders cannot fail to be attributed at least in part to the very long list of absentees at Cleveland. And given the balance in the division, they are last when a victory would have catapulted them to the top spot. Another asterisk at the bottom of this season is inevitable. And we hope that the end will be reached soon without it all degenerating and we will be forced to review the calendar and postseason.

contenders

In AFC, the PATs have run into an almost physiological false step. There is. Sunday’s game with Buffalo will tell us how far I am in playoff racing. Kansas City continues to win, but leaves doubts due to too many turnover. Pat Mahomes with another interception and a fumble, is still not that machine from points of view in the last two seasons. But since there is no team that rises “head and shoulders”, as they say in the US, above the others, the Chiefs (who in the first 7 games, 4 of which lost, totaled 17 turnover, while in the winning streak of 7 they fell at 8, so at least the trend is positive) seem to be the ones to beat. We were ready to enter Tennessee thinking about the possible return of Derrick Henry, but the bad defeat in Pittsburgh forces us to pull the handbrake for a moment. In the NFC Green Bay she is the big favorite. It is not perfect, but certainly the one that comes closest to you. Tampa suffered a huge blow with the loss of Chris Godwin (crusader, season over). Without Mike Evans and Leonard Fournette (as well as Breshad Perriman and Antonio Brown) it becomes tough for Tom Brady too. Like broth they signed Le’Veon Bell, who this year seems to be a stopgap by profession. So the Saints seem to be kryptonite, at least in the regular season. Brown’s return becomes key to ending in crescendo. Watch out for the Niners: they are finding the best form at the right time. Unfortunately, we were right not to trust the Cardinals, albeit seriously penalized by having lost DeAndre Hopkins.

players of the week

In defense Cameron Jordan of the Saints, who showed the green mice to Tom Brady. In attack Brandin Cooks of the Texans: 7 receptions, 102 yards, two td.

the super bowl of the week

Packers-Chiefs in Los Angeles, as the first time, Sb number 1, January 15, 1967. For the record, Green Bay won 35-10. Then we played at the Coliseum, this time at SoFi.

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Kupp phenomenon, the Rams beat Seattle. Packers and Chiefs, good signs

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