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 Post subject: 2058 Betting Preview - Divisional Round
PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 8:57 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 12:43 pm
Posts: 231
That SHR+1 was such a bad beat... exciting games though!

We've got some really great ones coming up and since I looked at the East conference games last week, I'll do the West this time.

Los Angeles at Alaska (-3) - LAS led their WC game against ATL wire to wire and won in dominating fashion. The Wolfpack struggled to sustain long drives who went 3-and-out on over half of their possessions and QB Clements took several sacks he normally wouldn't have when the protection broke down immediately after the snap. ATL didn't have the best offensive line during the season (allowing 47 sacks) so that wasn't surprising, but props to Outlaws for attacking a banged up C Gowin and weak T Weimer.

The Kodiaks have been the tragedy of the CFL two years running now-- an injury knocking QB Marischen out in the conference match and now a serious ACL tear in week 14. This is now his fourth season in a row with a late injury and we have to ask "just how much longer is this going to last?" I don't want this post to be a eulogy for the guy, but he's 35 with two rings and still the winningest active QB in the CFL. Journeyman QB Hanks will be stepping into some uncomfortably big shoes this week.

To make things worse, COVID-58 has been making the rounds in Alaska and early reports indicate that startinng tackles Ted Simien and Nicholas Cartwright might not be 100%. A slew of other rookies and roleplayers could also miss time. We saw what these two teams looked like at full strength in week 10 but the best we saw from QB Hanks was a passable showing for one half of a football game vs SEA. This is going to be a tall order without serious contributions from WRs Farley and Jennings.

The Outlaws are at 100% and unfortunately, that'll be plenty to take down a decimated Kodiaks team. I'll call it at 30-10 LAS and hopefully we'll see ol' Jimmy again in 2059.

Fargo at Las Vegas (-4) - FAR scraped by division rivals ELP last week in an ugly, grinding affair that came down to a, there's really no other way to say this, QB Sullivan choke in the fourth quarter. FAR is a pretty good team, don't get me wrong, but GM Ushikawa had to have sacrificed something to the football gods to have the ball bounce their way this heavily... On what would be the turning point of the game, TE Gowan wasn't expecting any looks and didn't have his head turned to Sullivan. Rookie CB Zimmerman, who had done basically nothing all season, came away with the play of the game by jumping a bread and butter dig route to the TE. I really thought ELP was going to win the game even after that, but they collapsed after the momentum swing. Next year they will do better.

Then when you look at the big picture, DE Johnstone and QB Marischen both being out on the conference favorites means this race is wide open. That doesn't mean this'll be easy, but both future HOF locks were transcendent talents and this week won't be the same without them. The Sodbusters are a little hurt with LBs Blake Sutter, Timothy Andersen and CB Calvin Nixon potentially not at 100%-- but they're expected to suit up. RB Holtzer is the key for the Sodbusters this week as he must alleviate the oppressive LVS pass rush every time he's on the field. I know WRs Crabtree and Fence are supremely talented, but if Woodard can't get his feet set they have no chance.

I haven't written too much about the Rounders and there's really not too much to say... the team was able to bring back the majority of their championship lineup and they've been taking care of business behind a healthy RB Gmerek. With less pressure on his shoulders, QB McKnight nearly matched his stellar 2057 season and looks primed to repeat. It's really nice to see teams not stricken by the Bowl curse (see: DET) and the Rounders really haven't missed a step, even during a stretch in the middle of the season where just about everyone on defense missed time. The defense is even good against the run now, a weakness in 2057 and I think they really are the best team in the league right now.

This game is hard to call and I kinda want to see FAR pull off the upset, but realistically the Rounders are just too talented and too consistent to let that happen. Two players to watch: rookie WR McSwain has gotten more and more targets each week since midseason and has been making significant contributions. FAR will need to pay attention to the 3+ receiver sets and ensure he doesn't slip through. For the Sodbusters, rookie RB Ian Holtzer has been doing the Lord's work behind the line Fulton built and has done so remarkably well. If he can chew up yards on the ground and neutralize the best pass rushers in the league, FAR has a chance... but I like LVS to win in convincing fashion 32-20.

Good luck to everyone!

GL Division Champions: 2057
EFC Conference Champions: 2057

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 Post subject: Re: 2058 Betting Preview - Divisional Round
PostPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:16 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2014 11:40 am
Posts: 693
Fair take. We are also down 2 OL guys so our already bottom 3 pass pro will be even worse than the stats say. However, as you said, if we can stay on schedule and even pretty please get some impact plays from the run game, and force LVS into even more mistakes than our own Winston-esque QB as we have done historically against woulda-coulda-been-a-Sodbuster McKnight then there is no reason to think we can't pull off the upset. Our GP is certainly one made for an underdog and we will be going down swinging on both sides of the ball LVS' 7/8-man protection offense be damned.

Fargo Sodbusters

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