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Barnwell's Entire Playoff Prediction


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First off, I think Barnwell is a dry writer and has some serious misconceptions of sports (like his whole theory that momentum doesn't actually exist in sports).  I still read it because it is better than a lot of what ESPN puts out.  The article requires ESPN+ (which I wouldn't pay for by itself but as a bundle with Hulu and Disney+ why not) https://www.espn.com/nfl/insider/story/_/id/30661462/nfl-playoff-bracket-predictions-bill-barnwell-picks-every-winner-including-super-bowl-score . Barnwell has the Saints beating the Chiefs in the Super Bowl and it goes like this for the Bills:

 

They beat the Colts and lose to the Steelers.  "The Steelers' offense isn't great, but it's not as bad as it looked against the Bills in December, when it went 1-for-10 on third downs." and "It wouldn't shock me if we saw the Steelers' defense and Allen combine for something similar to the first matchup, when the Bills scored 19 points on offense (cornerback Taron Johnson had a pick-six to get the Bills to 26)."

 

Steelers lose to Chiefs in AFC Championship, and Saints beat Bucs in NFC Championship.

 

What interests me is how a one dimensional offense with an inability to stretch the field in its one dimension and a defense that got physically dominated in the second half somehow makes Pittsburgh a team that presents too many problems for the Bills.  The Bills scored 19 points on Offense in the first matchup because it didn't need to score more and dominated the clock to put the Steelers in a sleeper hold in the fourth quarter.  It was a dominating victory even though the Bills struggled early in the game on Offense to get things going.  The Bills defense simply matches up well against teams that can't run or pass deep - it plays right into their strengths.  And I'm not hating on Barnwell because its just a silly prediction piece, but how he relies on things like DVOA of defenses better than the Bills that the Steelers were more successful against rather than actual matchup strengths and weaknesses has always been a thing that irks me about his analysis.  He doesn't understand the context of the stats he cites and relies too heavily on them.  You can use stats to backup what you know you saw when you watched the game but when you use stats to perpetuate a narrative that doesn't reflect reality then you are just clueless and blind in what you are trying to prove.

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18 minutes ago, Ayjent said:

First off, I think Barnwell is a dry writer and has some serious misconceptions of sports (like his whole theory that momentum doesn't actually exist in sports).  I still read it because it is better than a lot of what ESPN puts out.  The article requires ESPN+ (which I wouldn't pay for by itself but as a bundle with Hulu and Disney+ why not) https://www.espn.com/nfl/insider/story/_/id/30661462/nfl-playoff-bracket-predictions-bill-barnwell-picks-every-winner-including-super-bowl-score . Barnwell has the Saints beating the Chiefs in the Super Bowl and it goes like this for the Bills:

 

They beat the Colts and lose to the Steelers.  "The Steelers' offense isn't great, but it's not as bad as it looked against the Bills in December, when it went 1-for-10 on third downs." and "It wouldn't shock me if we saw the Steelers' defense and Allen combine for something similar to the first matchup, when the Bills scored 19 points on offense (cornerback Taron Johnson had a pick-six to get the Bills to 26)."

 

Steelers lose to Chiefs in AFC Championship, and Saints beat Bucs in NFC Championship.

 

What interests me is how a one dimensional offense with an inability to stretch the field in its one dimension and a defense that got physically dominated in the second half somehow makes Pittsburgh a team that presents too many problems for the Bills.  The Bills scored 19 points on Offense in the first matchup because it didn't need to score more and dominated the clock to put the Steelers in a sleeper hold in the fourth quarter.  It was a dominating victory even though the Bills struggled early in the game on Offense to get things going.  The Bills defense simply matches up well against teams that can't run or pass deep - it plays right into their strengths.  And I'm not hating on Barnwell because its just a silly prediction piece, but how he relies on things like DVOA of defenses better than the Bills that the Steelers were more successful against rather than actual matchup strengths and weaknesses has always been a thing that irks me about his analysis.  He doesn't understand the context of the stats he cites and relies too heavily on them.  You can use stats to backup what you know you saw when you watched the game but when you use stats to perpetuate a narrative that doesn't reflect reality then you are just clueless and blind in what you are trying to prove.

 

Should buffalo get past Indy, I think they're going to blitz the hell out of buffalo and go for turnovers.  Buffalo seems to have improved against it, but they'll have some weird man zone stuff to try and bait allen into throws.  It'll be interesting.

Edited by dneveu
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17 minutes ago, dneveu said:

 

Should buffalo get past Indy, I think they're going to blitz the hell out of buffalo and go for turnovers.  Buffalo seems to have improved against it, but they'll have some weird man zone stuff to try and bait allen into throws.  It'll be interesting.

I expect they attempt to bait Buffalo too, but I don't think they will be able to cover this WR group. Their plan will be to try and pressure and confuse Josh, but there are too many receivers that can get open quick. Josh has really improved his quick passing attack against some of the best defenses in the league. Seattle sacked Allen, I think, 7 times - Bills still won. Pittsburgh harassed Allen for the entire game and were successful for the 1st half of that game but again - Bills still won. Indy isn't anywhere near as good at bringing pressure as Pittsburgh. Allen is going to find his targets. It may take a couple of drives to figure out but they ain't stopping this.

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37 minutes ago, Ayjent said:

First off, I think Barnwell is a dry writer and has some serious misconceptions of sports (like his whole theory that momentum doesn't actually exist in sports).  I still read it because it is better than a lot of what ESPN puts out.  The article requires ESPN+ (which I wouldn't pay for by itself but as a bundle with Hulu and Disney+ why not) https://www.espn.com/nfl/insider/story/_/id/30661462/nfl-playoff-bracket-predictions-bill-barnwell-picks-every-winner-including-super-bowl-score . Barnwell has the Saints beating the Chiefs in the Super Bowl and it goes like this for the Bills:

 

They beat the Colts and lose to the Steelers.  "The Steelers' offense isn't great, but it's not as bad as it looked against the Bills in December, when it went 1-for-10 on third downs." and "It wouldn't shock me if we saw the Steelers' defense and Allen combine for something similar to the first matchup, when the Bills scored 19 points on offense (cornerback Taron Johnson had a pick-six to get the Bills to 26)."

 

Steelers lose to Chiefs in AFC Championship, and Saints beat Bucs in NFC Championship.

 

What interests me is how a one dimensional offense with an inability to stretch the field in its one dimension and a defense that got physically dominated in the second half somehow makes Pittsburgh a team that presents too many problems for the Bills.  The Bills scored 19 points on Offense in the first matchup because it didn't need to score more and dominated the clock to put the Steelers in a sleeper hold in the fourth quarter.  It was a dominating victory even though the Bills struggled early in the game on Offense to get things going.  The Bills defense simply matches up well against teams that can't run or pass deep - it plays right into their strengths.  And I'm not hating on Barnwell because its just a silly prediction piece, but how he relies on things like DVOA of defenses better than the Bills that the Steelers were more successful against rather than actual matchup strengths and weaknesses has always been a thing that irks me about his analysis.  He doesn't understand the context of the stats he cites and relies too heavily on them.  You can use stats to backup what you know you saw when you watched the game but when you use stats to perpetuate a narrative that doesn't reflect reality then you are just clueless and blind in what you are trying to prove.

They had something going in the first half that was rattling Allen. For us its easy to say we wont let that happen since, well, we adjusted in that game. But I dont think its unreasonable to say Pitt could also learn from it. Also Pitt did have several drops. You remove those, get a bit healthier on defense and Ben stretches the field like they did against the Colts and maybe. I wouldnt bet on it though. I think were a tier above them.

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51 minutes ago, Ayjent said:

First off, I think Barnwell is a dry writer and has some serious misconceptions of sports (like his whole theory that momentum doesn't actually exist in sports).  I still read it because it is better than a lot of what ESPN puts out.  The article requires ESPN+ (which I wouldn't pay for by itself but as a bundle with Hulu and Disney+ why not) https://www.espn.com/nfl/insider/story/_/id/30661462/nfl-playoff-bracket-predictions-bill-barnwell-picks-every-winner-including-super-bowl-score . Barnwell has the Saints beating the Chiefs in the Super Bowl and it goes like this for the Bills:

 

They beat the Colts and lose to the Steelers.  "The Steelers' offense isn't great, but it's not as bad as it looked against the Bills in December, when it went 1-for-10 on third downs." and "It wouldn't shock me if we saw the Steelers' defense and Allen combine for something similar to the first matchup, when the Bills scored 19 points on offense (cornerback Taron Johnson had a pick-six to get the Bills to 26)."

 

Steelers lose to Chiefs in AFC Championship, and Saints beat Bucs in NFC Championship.

 

What interests me is how a one dimensional offense with an inability to stretch the field in its one dimension and a defense that got physically dominated in the second half somehow makes Pittsburgh a team that presents too many problems for the Bills.  The Bills scored 19 points on Offense in the first matchup because it didn't need to score more and dominated the clock to put the Steelers in a sleeper hold in the fourth quarter.  It was a dominating victory even though the Bills struggled early in the game on Offense to get things going.  The Bills defense simply matches up well against teams that can't run or pass deep - it plays right into their strengths.  And I'm not hating on Barnwell because its just a silly prediction piece, but how he relies on things like DVOA of defenses better than the Bills that the Steelers were more successful against rather than actual matchup strengths and weaknesses has always been a thing that irks me about his analysis.  He doesn't understand the context of the stats he cites and relies too heavily on them.  You can use stats to backup what you know you saw when you watched the game but when you use stats to perpetuate a narrative that doesn't reflect reality then you are just clueless and blind in what you are trying to prove.

 

 

He "doesn't understand the context of the stats"? Please. Whatever else you want to say about Barnwell, he's smart as hell. He certainly understands that.

 

And his narrative isn't divorced from reality either. 

 

Disagreeing with him, though, is certainly fair. It's all opinions when it comes to predictions.

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Everybody is sleeping on the Steelers right now IMO.  They were counted out when they had the slide.   They had a rest week, and IMO will likely smash a depleted Browns team (which could very well give them confidence and more rest)...  they would be a tough out.  I still think I would rather play them than the Titans, Chiefs, or maybe Ravens.

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31 minutes ago, jletha said:

They had something going in the first half that was rattling Allen. For us its easy to say we wont let that happen since, well, we adjusted in that game. But I dont think its unreasonable to say Pitt could also learn from it. Also Pitt did have several drops. You remove those, get a bit healthier on defense and Ben stretches the field like they did against the Colts and maybe. I wouldnt bet on it though. I think were a tier above them.

For one, Heyward was a disruptive force in the 1st half pushing the pocket, getting pressure, and clogging up the interior.  The Bills seemed to make some blocking adjustments in the 2nd half and he was not as much of a fact as a result.  Josh was also getting the ball out a little quicker and reading the "D" more effectively.

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Pittsburgh was missing it's starting middle linebacker against us. However it will be a new game and at home. Should be interesting. I do think they beat Cleveland.

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we had just about the worst first half possible on O vs pittz.

 

there was an adjustment made prior to the half tho, where we scored a fg.  schematically there was a difference in how the interior line was blocking, and it worked.  ever since that game the bills o line has simply been better, including closing out games running the ball in pretty dominant fashion, and against above average to very good Ds.

 

This isn't just some jonny come lately wrinkle to be figured out either, this is the entire 4th quarter of the nfl season, save most of the first half vs pittz.  vs two teams that needed wins for playoff entry or playoff positioning, and two teams that at least have good Ds and were playing for pride.  

 

i know this discussion focuses on the pitt game, but to me the playoffs comes down to the indy game.  if the bills can weather any early storm and ride positive mo and play with the confidence they have had, it is going to take an honestly better team having a great day to beat us.

 

this kinda reminds me of the 08 giants SB victory.  they lost late in the year to NE, but they had so so much confidence and played so loose that it always seemed like they were the ones in control, not their opponent.  they beat TR lead dallas, and favre in green bay en route to stealing away the pats perfect season.

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53 minutes ago, May Day 10 said:

Everybody is sleeping on the Steelers right now IMO.  They were counted out when they had the slide.   They had a rest week, and IMO will likely smash a depleted Browns team (which could very well give them confidence and more rest)...  they would be a tough out.  I still think I would rather play them than the Titans, Chiefs, or maybe Ravens.

 

yeah, the Steelers will show up when it matters.  And they did win 11 in a row.  They appear to be back.  They are a very good team with experience and great coaching.  We can beat them, but it will not be easy.  

13 minutes ago, Adam said:

Pittsburgh was missing it's starting middle linebacker against us. However it will be a new game and at home. Should be interesting. I do think they beat Cleveland.

 

I think Pittsburgh was missing its starter (Bush) and its backup (Spilliane, who has played well).  

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Worry about it if the team gets there, no point right now.

 

These guys have to write about something, it's their job.  Useless to debate these scenarios amongst ourselves.

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Anyone that doesnt realize that that game against Pittsbrugh was over by the 3rd quarter is dillusional?  

 

I still cant grasp how people thought it was a "close game" 

 

So, we are also taking away the fact that the Bills scored 19 and took their foot off the gas in the 4th?  Maybe we just need to blow everyone out just so people get the picture?  Oh, and like a pick 6 is a negative to a winning team?  Since when? lol

 

I dont get it?  Buffalo got off to a shaky start against pittsburgh....then dominated them?

 

 

In addition, we played prevent and gave them a TD in the 4th - that game wasnt close...this is ridiculous.

 

 

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" when the Bills scored 19 points on offense"

 

Well, OK but we were 1st and 10 on their 19 and JA did 2 kneel downs to end the game to conclude a 13 play drive.

The 19 could certainly have been more and we definitely controlled the 2nd half.

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4 minutes ago, Bangarang said:

Why is this thread a thing? 

Because someone's confused that someone didn't predict the Bills to beat Pittsburgh in the divisional round of the playoffs.... like it's unfathomable if that happens..... 

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The we were held to 19 points narrative is garbage 

No mention of what they were held to?

We were held to 19 points because we ran the ball at them for 8 minutes and they couldn’t do anything about it. 
 

We held ourselves to 19 points. They didn’t do squat 

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Umm we're not losing to Pittsburgh if we are blessed enough to get to round 2 and Pittsburgh beats the Browns. This guy must be protecting an early season prediction of Pit/KC in the AFC Championship. Nobody in their right mind would pick Pit over Buf right now.

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The Steelers are not an elite football team. Neither are the Colts.  The Chiefs and Bills are on a collision course. I think it is a 60-40 shot the Chiefs beat the Bills but I will take a 40 percent shot at the Super Bowl.  The Chiefs get the extra week of rest and get to play at home. Everything still goes through KC but the Bills have a real legit shot to beat them.  The Steelers never passed the eye test this year.  They were always a very good team, but never elite.

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