Bills at Pats: 1st Seed… haha, “Seed”

Posted: December 29, 2011 by mzyohai in Jets, NFL, Prediction
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Mike: Eight ProBowl selections and one game left to clinch the AFC’s top seed. And you couldn’t have asked for a more fitting opponent: the Buffalo Bills, who left the Patriots scratching their heads after the QB formerly known as Fitzpatrick went toe-to-toe with Tom “Yes, my Under Armour and UGGs sponsorships make sense together” Brady.

The Bills have been outed as a fraud. Their (Frank’s) red-hot start was an aberration as the Bills have managed to fall to 6-9, securing yet another losing year.

Nick: I am positive that the Patriots are going to put the Bills back in their place, which is to say buried neck deep in a dirty, piss-stained snow bank in the middle of Buffalo. I would like to think the Pats defense might decide to show up for this one, but that’s just setting myself up for failure and disappointment. I will never trust this defense, especially now that sack-guru (in all its multiple meanings, I’m sure) Andre Carter is on injured reserve with a busted knee. Mark Anderson filled in ably for Carter after he went down against the Broncos, forcing AND recovering a Tim Tebow fumble and wreaking general havoc behind the line of scrimmage.

Mike: Looks like the Bills and Pats have mastery of the Broncos in common. The Bills are coming off of a drubbing of the Denver Tebows. But feeling good and regaining some confidence is the very least of it. The Bills pulled out the Week 3 playbook and snatched four interceptions from Tim (Timmay!) Tebow. Sound familiar? The Bills nabbed the same number of interceptions from Tom Brady. I’ll give the Patriots’ offense a little credit here though: Denver gave up two pick-six’s, the Pats only allowed one.

The biggest problems last time around for the Patriots were the penalties (8/93) and the interceptions. Tom Brady still tossed for 4 TDs on 387 yards… he might be the first QB to earn an 86.0 QBR despite having four picks in a single game. But something is telling me that Brady will want to play a little cleaner. That something is the all-time single season passing record. Drew Brees, the usurper of Dan Marino’s throne, is current sitting at 5,087 yards this year after a demolition of the Atlanta Falcons. Brady is right behind him at 4,897.

Let’s pause one moment: Drew Brees now has two seasons under his belt in which he’s passed for over 5,000 yards. WHAT?

OK, press play: The question of the week is how the Patriots will lock down C.J. Spiller. He’s no Fred Jackson… because he’s not ProBowl worthy and he still has legs… but he’s been logging some big numbers in his limited appearances. So can the Patriots’ defense wake up this time and put an end to the misery of the walking wounded brigade of Buffalo Bills? Or will sports fans around the country be confused again this week when they see a 17-0 Bills lead at halftime?

Nick: I don’t think they’ll get burned for 17 first half points again, if only because every other team in the league has mapped out a clear blueprint for how to stop Fitzpatrick and his weak passing arm. Spiller doesn’t put the fear of God into me (well, no one does); he’ll probably get some yards, but not to the tune of controlling the game and putting up points.

Still, I refuse to get my hopes up and count on anything other than the Patriots offense to pull out a victory. Now that the Pats get the Bills at home, I expect an entirely different game. The Pats have only lost once in their last 24 games at Foxboro, and I don’t expect this week to make it twice in their last 25. As we’ve noted many times talking about the Bills, they rely on turnovers and points on defense and special teams to win; I don’t expect Brady to acquiesce to those needs and give up the ball four times like in Week 3. The Patriots struggled last week, but still scored 27 points. With one loss already to Buffalo, I think the Pats will have some offensive fireworks in the game plan to ensure they don’t have a repeat loss to a less-than-mediocre Bills squad.

Can the Pats offense keep up this torrent of scoring? Or will they enter a scoring drought (reminiscent of yours) at the worst possible time to cost themselves a #1 seed?

Mike:  My scoring drought is not ill-timed, thank you.

The only thing in the Patriots’ way is the Patriots. Supposedly Belichick had to get the team pretty riled up last week at halftime by pulling out his ace-in-the-hole: profanity. After doing the unthinkable and completely unconscionable, the Pats were scared of the four-letter words that might fly out of his mouth if they didn’t get their poop together. If the Patriots can remember the feeling of nearly making pee-pee in their pants when Daddy Bill’s unleashed his potty mouth, then I think they should be able to keep up the scoring party.

Nick: Really? All this ridicule of Belichick as a coach when you root for a team who needs their coach to take responsibility for their crappy play? All because Sanchez and company can’t handle the criticism without breaking down in a tear-soaked tantrum? You really want to make fun of the Pats for their motivational tactics when Rex Ryan has to resort to saying completely outlandish things after a loss to deflect attention from your team’s shoddy play? And threaten his starting QB with a fake benching and a couple of first-team reps for the AARP-eligible Mark Brunell? This is the same fat guy who waddles the sideline and enjoys his field-level seats to watch the game instead of making any adjustments to blocking schemes or overall strategy. But if you want to poke fun at Belichick’s occasional profane language, that’s fine. I’ll take the division title and the playoff appearance any day.

Mike: Considering that I’m sure that you’ll be shitting on my QB in the Jets preview, which your lazy ass probably hasn’t written because you’re too busy sipping egg-nog while watching “Bridesmaids” with your slam-piece, I’ll just hold my tongue and wait to respond in that forum.

Nick: You got me. Sipping eggnog and watching “Bridesmaids.” How did you know? You must be working some of that Hebrew hocus-pocus to spy on me.

Mike: The Patriots will probably put this one away easily, but I’m more interested to see if the Pats pull a Saints and let Brady go for the record. If this one gets out of hand early, does Brady sit out the fourth quarter?

Nick: I don’t think Brady sits out this one unless the game is a definitive laugher, but it won’t have anything to do with the record. Marino’s record is a moot point after Brees broke it, and Brady’s way too far behind to catch Brees for the record. The Pats hardly sit Brady, because he’s so competitive and always wants to play. Plus, they’ll be looking at an extra week off if they’re in line for a win, so I imagine they might keep him in to stay sharp and work with the offense in a game situation. But if they’re just annihilating the Bills, he might sit to keep him safe from injury.

Mike: Speaking of egg-nog: that shit must be going to your head. The Pats already clinched a first round bye. They’re playing for nothing but home field advantage.

Tom Brady was out of practice on Wednesday and Thursday with a shoulder injury… the same shoulder injury that the Patriots have listed on their injury report for the better part of a decade.

Nick: Do you think the Pats will play it safe by sitting Brady with a lead, or throw up a big “Eff You” middle finger as a pre-playoffs statement to the rest of the league? And depending on your answer, what’s the final margin of victory for the future first seed of the AFC Playoffs?

Mike: Supposedly, the Pats training staff was afraid that Brady had a separated left shoulder. X-Rays came back negative, but with that kind of scare, I’m almost positive that the Pats will bench him as soon as possible, even if it’s his non-throwing arm… maybe even if it’s close. Tom Brady is much more important than home field advantage.

To boot, the Bills simply have nothing going for them anymore. Unless the guy who decided to let Tim Tebow air it out all day long has infiltrated the Patriots coaching ranks and calls for Tom Brady to run the ball himself, I think this game is going to get ugly fast. This one won’t be as much of an “Eff-you” to the league as it will to the AFC East – this beat down will erase all memories of Week 3, and when all is said and done, nobody will remember that the Pats lost to a single division foe. Except me. Final Score: Pats 38, Bills 17

Nick: I’m not worried about any Brady injury reports. He had an elbow brace on earlier this year, he’s always listed on the injury report, and he’s Tom Effing Brady. I don’t really know what that last point signifies, but it sounds like I vaguely know something about his toughness and other similar character traits.

But I can’t disagree with your logic (you did major in philosophy, after all). The Pats should put this team away early and hold them off late. Home field advantage, here we come. Final Score: Patriots 31, Bills 20

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