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Houston Texans

Bill Belichick’s Masterpiece

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The Patriots humiliated the Houston Texans on Thursday night with one of the greatest gameplans in the history of the NFL. Behind third-round rookie Quarterback Jacoby Brissett, the Patriots embarrassed the previously unbeaten Texans by handing them a 27-0 defeat. It would take weeks of film study to discover all of the nuances the Patriots’ coaching staff installed during the short week of practice, but I’ll try to explain a couple of schemes Bill Belichick employed in an all-time great coaching performance.

 

The first thing that jumped out to me watching the game live was the lack of pressure the Texans were able to put on the Patriots’ young Quarterback. The Texans racked up 9 sacks through the first two games, but the Patriots Offensive Line only allowed 1 sack against one of the most dominant defensive fronts in football. The Patriots totally took J.J. Watt out of the game by occasionally sending a triple-team his way, and getting the ball out of Brissett’s hand quickly in the short to intermediate pass game. Field Yates (@FieldYates) tweeted a startling statistic regarding the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, “JJ Watt vs. all other teams: 76 sacks in 79 games. JJ Watt vs. the Patriots: 0 sacks in 4 games.” The Patriots simply refuse to be beaten by their opponents’ best players, so they effectively take them out of the game.

 

The Patriots were also able to silence another Texans star in DeAndre Hopkins by holding him to 56 yards on 4 receptions from 8 targets. New England Cornerback Logan Ryan was matched up with Hopkins all night, while their other star Cornerback Malcolm Butler shut down speedy rookie Wide Receiver Will Fuller (7 targets, 3 receptions, 31 yards) who had gone over 100 receiving yards in each of the first two games. Without his two favorite receivers Osweiler only managed to throw for 196 yards, and threw a crucial interception to Jamie Collins early in the 2nd Quarter. The Patriots allowed the Texans to beat themselves with 3 turnovers while the Patriots refused to give the ball away. The Texans also committed 3 more penalties than New England for 28 more yards.

 

The most impressive part of their gameplan was the handling of young Jacoby Brissett. They emphasized Brissett’s ability as a runner (he was the 6th highest graded running Quarterback in 2014 according to Pro Football Focus) by giving him 8 carries for 48 yards and a Touchdown. They were creative with their formations including the one shown below, which I had never seen before in an NFL game.

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Building an early lead allowed Offensive Coordinater Josh McDaniels to be conservative in his play-calling only asking Brissett to throw the ball 19 times. The Patriots received a typical ground-and-pound performance from RB LeGarrette Blount running for 105 yards and 2 TDs on 24 carries.

 

Another advantage the Patriots had in this game was that the Texans’ Head Coach, Offensive Coordinator, and Defensive Coordinator had all previously worked under Belichick in New England. I have no doubt that Belichick had some notes on how to expose each of their schemes if they ever donned a headset on the opposite sideline.

 

The Patriots have now started 3-0 without possibly the greatest Quarterback of all time, and only seeing 14 snaps from the greatest Tight End of all time in Rob Gronkowski. The Patriots were my preseason Super Bowl pick, and I doubled down on that prediction by tweeting that they’ll go 16-0 after their impressive performance in Week 1. Anything is possible when you have the greatest mind in all of football sporting his patented cut-off hooded sweatshirt roaming the sidelines.

Shop for New England Patriots gear at Fanatics.com

Andrew is an analyst at Pro Football Focus and has written about College Football for SB Nation

Arizona Cardinals

2018 Opponents Set For Each NFL Team

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Now that the 2017 regular season in the books, it’s time to look forward to the 2018 season right?

Just like eating at some of the top restaurants in the nation, it’s good to know what’s on your plate next, regardless of how far away you are from your next dish.

Here is the rundown of the opponents for each NFL team in 2018:

AFC EAST

 

New England Patriots
Home: Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs, Minnesota Vikings
Away: Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Pittsburgh Steelers, Tennessee Titans

Buffalo Bills
Home: Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Chargers, Tennessee Titans
Away: Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings

Miami Dolphins
Home: Buffalo Bills, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Oakland Raiders, Tennessee Titans
Away: Buffalo Bills, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Cincinnati Bengals, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings

New York Jets
Home: Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Denver Broncos, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings
Away: Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans

AFC NORTH

 

Pittsburgh Steelers
Home: Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, New England Patriots
Away: Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, Jacksonville Jaguars, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Baltimore Ravens
Home: Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Away: Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Tennessee Titans

Cincinnati Bengals
Home: Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Denver Broncos, Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Away: Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers

Cleveland Browns
Home: Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Pittsburgh Steelers, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, New York Jets
Away: Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Pittsburgh Steelers, Denver Broncos, Houston Texans, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

AFC SOUTH

 

Jacksonville Jaguars
Home: Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Redskins
Away: Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, Kansas City Chiefs, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants

Tennessee Titans
Home: Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Baltimore Ravens, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins
Away: Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Chargers, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants

Indianapolis Colts
Home: Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants
Away: Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins

Houston Texans
Home: Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants
Away: Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins

AFC WEST

 

Kansas City Chiefs
Home: Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Chargers, Oakland Raiders, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Jacksonville Jaguars, San Francisco 49ers
Away: Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Chargers, Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks

Los Angeles Chargers
Home: Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans
Away: Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks

Oakland Raiders
Home: Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Cleveland Browns, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks
Away: Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers

Denver Broncos
Home: Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns, Houston Texans, Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks
Away: Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Oakland Raiders, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers

NFC EAST

 

Philadelphia Eagles
Home: Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Minnesota Vikings
Away: Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Washington Redskins, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Rams, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans

Dallas Cowboys
Home: New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans
Away: New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Seattle Seahawks

Washington Redskins
Home: Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts
Away: Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans

New York Giants
Home: Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Chicago Bears, Jacksonville Jaguars, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans
Away: Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, San Francisco 49ers

NFC NORTH

 

Minnesota Vikings
Home: Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, San Francisco 49ers
Away: Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks

Detroit Lions
Home: Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Carolina Panthers, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Seattle Seahawks
Away: Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers

Green Bay Packers
Home: Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Atlanta Falcons, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers
Away: Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Seattle Seahawks, Washington Redskins

Chicago Bears
Home: Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Los Angeles Rams, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Seattle Seahawks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Away: Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers

NFC SOUTH

 

New Orleans Saints
Home: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, Los Angeles Rams, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Redskins
Away: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings, New York Giants

Carolina Panthers
Home: Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Seattle Seahawks
Away: Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Redskins

Atlanta Falcons
Home: Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants
Away: Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Cleveland Browns, Green Bay Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, Washington Redskins

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Home: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Cleveland Browns, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, Washington Redskins
Away: Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants

NFC WEST

 

Los Angeles Rams
Home: Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia Eagles
Away: Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders

Seattle Seahawks
Home: Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota Vikings
Away: Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Oakland Raiders

Arizona Cardinals
Home: Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Oakland Raiders, Washington Redskins
Away: Los Angeles Rams, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Atlanta Falcons, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota Vikings

San Francisco 49ers
Home: Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders
Away: Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota Vikings, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Atlanta Falcons

Pick 5: Week 3 NFL Picks

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Week 3 is coming up and we are still batting above .500 so lets recap last weeks picks and take a stab at five more games for this Sunday.

Hits: Chiefs, Buccaneers and Falcons … Misses: Jets, Panthers

I took the bait on the big 14 points the Jets were getting and I got burned. Panthers won their game but they didn’t cover the spread. So last week we ended up with a 3-2 and overall on the season we are 5-4.

Week 3

Falcons (-3) @ Lions

Despite what happened in Super Bowl the Falcons are still a top tier team in the NFL. Until injuries or tape show us chinks in the armor we are going to ride the Ryan, Julio and Freeman express until they let us down. The Lions are much improved and I am tempted to take the home team with the three points but …. nah. Our pick: Falcons

Giants @ Eagles (-6)

NFC East battles are always a treat to watch and even though the Giants looked terrible last week a small part of me is tempted to ride with them. The Eagles looked decent in a loss against the Chiefs and the Wentz kid is starting to look like a ball player. However, I’m not convinced OBJ is going to be healthy enough to make the difference that is capable of making. We will play it safe, and just stick with the home team. Our pick: Eagles win and cover

Raiders (-3) @ Redskins

The Washington football team escaped the Rams last week and through 2 weeks the Raiders have looked really good. Carr has 5 TD’s on the season and no interceptions. No offense to the Washington team but the Raiders seem to be trending up and we are going to roll with the hot hand. This might end up being a push but we’ll roll with Marshawn Lynch and the boys from Oakland on this one. Our pick: Raiders

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via GIPHY

Texans @ Patriots (-13)

This is another big number but this time we are gonna stay on the other side. I’m not sure what Bill Belichick’s record vs rookie Quarterbacks is but I’m guessing that it is probably really good. I think the DeShaun Watson can be a good QB in this league but this is going to be one of those game he is going to have to chalk up as a learning experience. Our pick: Pats win

Seahawks @ Titans (-3)

Russell Wilson and the offensive of the Seahawks have been down right offensive through 2 weeks. The Titans have a formidable defense and our 3 points favorites at home as they should be. However, being the Russell Wilson fan that I am if you give me 3 points of that Seattle defense on the road I’m going to take my chances. Hey what number that Wilson wear again?  … Maybe its a sign from God. Our pick: Seahawks 

Texans @ Patriots (-13)

This is another big number but this time we are gonna stay on the other side. I’m not sure what Bill Belichick’s record vs rookie Quarterbacks is but I’m guessing that it is probably really good. I think the DeShaun Watson can be a good QB in this league but this is going to be one of those game he is going to have to chalk up as a learning experience. Our pick: Pats win


pff edge

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Cincinnati Bengals

Texans-Bengals Get Set For Thursday Night Clash!

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Welcome to another season of Thursday Night Football. This season, it’s season 12 and the season will officially kickoff between the Houston Texans and the Cincinnati Bengals.

Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals have their eyes on an improved season. Photo by John Sommers II/UPI

In week one, the Cincinnati Bengals were at home against divisional foes the Baltimore Ravens. The Bengals were shut out by a final score of Ravens 20, Bengals 0.

Now, coming off a short week, can the Cincinnati Bengals will take on the Texans in a TNF showdown.

On December 24, 2016, the Cincinnati Bengals squared off on a Christmas Eve edition of Thursday Night Football.

The Bengals lost to Houston 12-10. Overall, the Cincinnati Bengals are 3-5 in the eight games they have played.

Photo: Michael Ciaglo, Houston Chronicle

Down in Houston, Texas, the Texans took on their division counter parts the Jacksonville Jaguars. During that game, the Texans struggled to get to a fast pace start.

But, they quickly realize that they were struggling.

As for being on Thursday Night Football, the last game the Texans were on was On September 22, 2016, as they faced the New England Patriots. The Patriots won that game 27-0. Overall, their record on Thursday Night Football is 1-4 in the five games they played in.

You can watch season 12 of Thursday Night Football this Thursday starting at 8/7c on CBS, NFL Network, and streaming on Amazon Prime Video. Good luck to both Houston Texans and Cincinnati Bengals.

 

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