AFC East News, Jan. 15, 2017-NFL Playoff Sunday

AFC East News, Jan. 15, 2017-NFL Playoff Sunday
Luciano 11
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Schedule of Articles

➢ Sun. 1/15: NFL Playoff Sunday

➢  Mon. 1/16 @ 11am: WTFH! Playoffs Review by Luciano11
 ➢  Tue. 1/17 @ 11am: The Offseason Has Begun: … Edition by ArcherNoles1863
 ➢ Wed. 1/18 @ 11: Weekly Overreactions by SlickVinny

➢  Thu. 1/19 @ 11am: NO ARTICLES 

➢  Fri. 1/20 @ 11am: NO ARTICLES






Amazingly enough, the all-time series between these two franchises is knotted at 17 wins apiece. Included in those 34 games are seven postseason affairs, of which the Cowboys are one up on the Packers. The legacy of this matchup is incredible (watch here), with this bout simply adding on to what is a deep-dish slice of NFL history. Also worth noting: The Cowboys walked into Lambeau earlier this season, ran through the Packers’ defense and flew home. Both teams are slightly different this time around: Green Bay is one of the hottest teams in football, while Dallas played that Week 6 game with a still-inexperienced Dak Prescott and no Dez Bryant.

OK, so let’s look forward. What matters Sunday? Much of what counted in October. The Packers‘ run defense had better slow down Ezekiel Elliott and that Cowboys ground attack. Green Bay came into the first meeting allowing less than 3 yards per carry. Then Dallas outrushed the cheeseheads 191-78. Being that successful means the Cowboys control the clock, limiting Aaron Rodgers‘ touches. If the Packers go 0-fer — like on their first four drives versus the Giants — they won’t get 8-10 more possessions to compensate. I like Rodgers against the Dallas secondary, but Jordy Nelson‘s probable absence sure doesn’t help. (UPDATE: Mike McCarthy announced on Friday that Nelson will indeed miss Sunday’s game.) Also, with Mo Claiborne back at corner and Dallas’ pass rushers having rested legs — hello David Irving, who was a force in the earlier meeting — can Rodgers get enough time (in terms of protection and number of drives) to put up enough points? The guess here is no, but that’s why they play the games. #GBvsDAL



Stop Le’Veon Bell. Not trying to just state the obvious here, but that’s the stark reality of this situation: If the Chiefs can’t do that, they will, in all likelihood, lose the game. We’ve seen Ben Roethlisbergerhave terrible games on the road, but when Bell produces, Pittsburgh’s still viable. Look at last month’s game in Buffalo, when Roethlisberger was awful (zero touchdowns, three picks), but Bell rushed for 236 yards and three scores in the Steelers win. Bell led the NFL in scrimmage yards per game, which went largely unnoticed with the emergence of David Johnson and Ezekiel Elliott. Second-and-4, third-and-2 — that kinda down-and-distance prevents the K.C. pass rush from being a major factor. In order to thwart Bell and win the field-position tussle, Kansas City ILBs (sans Derrick Johnson) must come up big. Safety support is a must, which could mean guys like Eli Rogers and Jesse James do sneaky damage off play-action.

I expect the Chiefs to run plenty, but effectiveness in the red zone is paramount to them advancing. They were 30th in the NFL inside the 20 — with a 45.5 percent touchdown rate — whereas Pittsburgh’s defense was top five in preventing red-zone TDs. #PITvsKC


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