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November 13, 2018

NFC Hierarchy/Obituary: Week 11 edition

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, the NFC is beginning to take shape, and one thing is very clear -- The Saints and Rams are in one class, and the rest of the conference is far, far behind them.

This week, we have one new obituary.



The Lions haven't been competitive in any of their last three games, and at 3-6 with a 1-2 record within the division, they're done, before Thanksgiving, which isn't uncommon for them.

Speaking of Thanksgiving, the two regular host teams, the Cowboys and Lions, have a combined two playoff wins over the last 21 seasons, both by Dallas, one of which was over Detroit. The Lions have the second-longest playoff win drought in the NFL, as they haven't won a playoff game since 1991.

So why are we forced to watch these garbage teams on Thanksgiving every year when there are so many better teams out there? Like, OK, I get that the Cowboys get good ratings because they're a high-profile team that has a big fan base and an even bigger contingent of fans that love to watch them lose. So I get that. But why exactly are the Lions still on TV on Thanksgiving every year? Who exactly are we placating on that, and why? It's so monumentally stupid.

Anyway, I'm just happy I don't have to think of something to write about this team every week anymore. Goodnight.





11) Falcons (4-5): Just when I was starting to believe in the Falcons, they go and get beaten down by the freaking Browns.


10) Seahawks (4-5): The Seahawks went toe-to-toe with the Rams for the second time this season, but a late rally fell short. I'm pretty sure the Rams won't want to see the Seahawks in the playoffs, though they probably won't have to worry about that.


9) Eagles (4-5): The Eagles have suffered a boatload of injuries this season, but that doesn't excuse the uninspired game planning offensively and the late-game meltdowns defensively. This has been a bad year across the board for the Eagles, from front office moves that have not worked, to the coaching staff's regression, to under-performing players.


8) Cowboys (4-5): If you're a Cowboys fan, after watching the Eagles win their first Super Bowl, followed by the subsequent obnoxious, incessant trash talk by Eagles fans, that win Sunday night must've felt really, really good. That's cool. I get it.

Unfortunately, Jerry Jones is going to give his below average quarterback a contract extension. Oh, and Jones gave a vote of confidence to his way below average head coach puppet after the win.

So if indeed Dak Prescott is the long-term answer at quarterback, and Jason Garrett survives yet another year, and the Cowboys still fall short of the playoffs in 2018, which they likely will, I really can't think of a worse outcome to this season if you're a Cowboys fan. It's truly the long-term doomsday scenario. 

But congrats on the ultimately meaningless win.


7) Packers (4-4-1): After taking their lumps against the Rams and Pats, the Packers apparently have the easiest remaining schedule in the NFC, which they'll need.


6) WASTEAM (6-3): WASTEAM picked up a road win in Tampa on Sunday, but frankly, they looked bad on both sides of the football. To begin, they managed just 16 points against a team that has given up at least 30 points to six of their other eight opponents this season. 

And yes, while WASTEAM "held" the Buccaneers to 3 points, their defense also looked like crap for the better part of the day, but were bailed out by a Bucs offense that continuously shot themselves in the foot. For example, the Bucs had a dropped TD, a dropped 3rd down pass inside the 5, an incredibly dumb mistake by Ryan Fitzpatrick in which he decided not to pick up a first down and instead ran parallel to the line to gain, a ridiculous play call on last play of the first half, a comically bad snap on third down inside the red zone that led to a long missed field, plus one other short 30-yard missed field goal. That's just off the top of my head.

Over the last two games, WASTEAM has allowed 992 yards. Plus, they've only scored a combined 30 points of their own the last two weeks against horrendous defenses. While they're very much in control of the awful NFC East at the moment, sphincters in Washington have to be clenched.  


5) Panthers (6-3): The Panthers are going to be an easy out in the first round of the playoffs, unless they're fortunate enough to play WASTEAM.


4) Vikings (5-3-1): The Vikes are coming off their bye, and the last time they played, they sacked Matthew Stafford 10 times. Sure, it's the Lions, but 10 sacks is still extremely impressive. Everson Griffen's return should give them a huge boost.


3) Bears (6-3): The Bears have won three straight by a combined score of 99-41. Sunday will be their biggest game in years when they'll face the Vikings at home.


2) Rams (9-1): Cooper Kupp has been a very reliable target for the Rams this year, catching 40 of 56 targets (71 percent) for 566 yards and 6 TDs. He's now done for the season with a torn ACL, and will be difficult for them to replace.


1) Saints (8-1): The Saints are on pace to score 587 points this season. That would be the third-most points in NFL history.

Year Team Points 
 2013Broncos 606 
 2007Patriots 598 
 2018Saints 587 (on pace) 
 2011Packers 560 
 2012Patriots 557 
 1998Vikings 556 
 2011Saints 547 
 2000Rams 540 
 2016Falcons 540 
 1999Rams 526 

The Saints' Week 11 matchup against the Eagles' injury-depleted secondary should keep them on that pace.

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