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  1. #1

    Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch



    The upcoming schedule offers some formidable, but not unbeatable, teams:

    Code:
    Week 13: Steelers
    Week 14: Redskins
    Week 15: Broncos
    Week 16: Giants
    Week 17: Bengals
    The Ravens could run the table, or they could drop a couple - we don't know. What we certainly do know is that this team a) is really good at home and b) not quite as good on the road to put it lightly. So if this winning criterion applies, suddenly the games look better with this added facet:

    Code:
    Week 13 (0 miles):   Steelers
    Week 14 (40 miles):  Redskins
    Week 15 (0 miles):   Broncos
    Week 16 (0 miles):   Giants
    Week 17 (500 miles): Bengals
    I don't know how often an NFL team can travel a mere 40 miles over four games. The Ravens can basically park their butts at home for the next month. I also think division road games fall outside of our normal travel-induced stupor. If you consider the three division road games last year and the two we've played this year, we've been able to win them all and while they're obviously not as good as the home equivalents, they're not on the level of the JAX, SEA, HOU, SD no-shows.

    It could hold even bigger implications if the Ravens are able to secure a #1 or #2 seed - then you'd be talking about one actual plane/bus trip in the span of about six weeks giving the players a chance to rest and recharge their batteries during the season's must critical point.




  2. #2
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Hopefully Cincy will be a meaningless game, and we won't even have to start our first team players for that. Unless of course there is something to play for.




  3. #3
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by leachisabeast View Post
    Hopefully Cincy will be a meaningless game, and we won't even have to start our first team players for that.
    Be careful what you hope for, 'beast--you might get it. Barring a complete collapse, the Ravens will win the AFCN. If they cannot better or worsen their postseason position depending on that game's outcome, then either they've already clinched a top seed & a bye week or two other teams have done so. Considering that the Pats' only tough remaining games are both at home (HOU & SF) & that the Broncos' most challenging game remaining is here, clinching a bye by then probably would require winning the next 4 games--all against extremely tough opposition fighting for their own postseasons--whereas there are many roads to locking in a #3 or #4 seed by then, particularly if they lose to DEN. Which seems more plausible to you?

    I do agree that the travel schedule favors the Ravens, particularly because there'll be a lot of purple in the stands at ExLax next Sunday probably making noise all out of proportion to their numbers, at least cutting into the noise when the offense is on the field.




  4. #4
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by leachisabeast View Post
    Hopefully Cincy will be a meaningless game, and we won't even have to start our first team players for that. Unless of course there is something to play for.
    Hopefully it's not. Hopefully we need to win it to get to the same record as Houston, and New England, in which situation we get the no.1 seed.




  5. #5
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by arnie_uk View Post
    Hopefully it's not. Hopefully we need to win it to get to the same record as Houston, and New England, in which situation we get the no.1 seed.
    Ravens would lose to Houston with the same record as the first tie breaker is head to head record, and we lost to Houston.





  6. #6
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
    Ravens would lose to Houston with the same record as the first tie breaker is head to head record, and we lost to Houston.

    hence why I said tied for the same record as be and Houston, in a three way tie, we beat ne, ne would beat Houston in a couple weeks, and Houston beat us.

    Head to head goes out the window.now for all this to happen, houston would have to lose another game, and we would lose one remainng game, taking all teams to 13 3.

    In this scenario we'd be no.1 ne 2 and Houston 3




  7. #7
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by arnie_uk View Post
    hence why I said tied for the same record as be and Houston, in a three way tie, we beat ne, ne would beat Houston in a couple weeks, and Houston beat us.

    Head to head goes out the window.now for all this to happen, houston would have to lose another game, and we would lose one remainng game, taking all teams to 13 3.

    In this scenario we'd be no.1 ne 2 and Houston 3
    OK - I did not glean that meaning from your previous post. So Houston loses two (Patriots and Colts?) and we lose one (but not to Pittsburgh, Denver or Cincy, they have to lose to the G-men) and NE wins out - then the Ravens get the nod. I don't see the Texans losing to both the Patriots and the Colts. If the Texans lose at Foxboro, they are gonna stomp the Colts at home. If the Texans win at Foxboro, the Colts might be able to sneak in a win at Reliant Stadium. And there is week 17 at Indy, but I just don't think so. I guess we'll have to see what happens.





  8. #8

    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    It might be possible that the Cincy game will be meaningless to the Bengals as well. If we wrap up the division, they'll be fighting for a WC spot, and they may well be in a situation where their seed is locked up going into that game. If that happens, they'll be looking to whoever their opponent will be the next week, and not too worried about the week 17 game.




  9. #9
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    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
    So Houston loses two (Patriots and Colts?) and we lose one (but not to Pittsburgh, Denver or Cincy, they have to lose to the G-men) and NE wins out...
    They'd have to lose exactly once, to an NFC team that isn't a common opponent. Both the G-men & the Skins qualify...but IMHO dropping the game at ExLax next week would be cutting things a bit close.

    The strange thing is that if they come into week 16 at 12-2 with NE at 11-3 and Houston no better than 12-2 (having lost to the Pats), the Giants game is very likely not to affect the seeding prospects win or lose--but the finale in Cincy is very likely to determine whether they get a bye or drop to the #3 seed.




  10. #10

    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
    OK - I did not glean that meaning from your previous post. So Houston loses two (Patriots and Colts?) and we lose one (but not to Pittsburgh, Denver or Cincy, they have to lose to the G-men) and NE wins out - then the Ravens get the nod. I don't see the Texans losing to both the Patriots and the Colts. If the Texans lose at Foxboro, they are gonna stomp the Colts at home. If the Texans win at Foxboro, the Colts might be able to sneak in a win at Reliant Stadium. And there is week 17 at Indy, but I just don't think so. I guess we'll have to see what happens.

    I don't think we can be sports psychologists here. I see no way how the outcome of the Pats game will directly affect the outcome of the Colts game.




  11. #11

    Re: Travel - It may make the difference down the stretch

    Quote Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
    OK - I did not glean that meaning from your previous post. So Houston loses two (Patriots and Colts?) and we lose one (but not to Pittsburgh, Denver or Cincy, they have to lose to the G-men) and NE wins out - then the Ravens get the nod. I don't see the Texans losing to both the Patriots and the Colts. If the Texans lose at Foxboro, they are gonna stomp the Colts at home. If the Texans win at Foxboro, the Colts might be able to sneak in a win at Reliant Stadium. And there is week 17 at Indy, but I just don't think so. I guess we'll have to see what happens.

    Yeah, I can see Houston losing both. They've never won in Indy and chances are they're not winning in Foxboro (warm weather half-dome team coming out into the cold in December against a Patriots team at the back end of a three game road trip.... yeah, not likely). Colts aren't great, but it's a divisional game at their house? The game vs NE has no real bearing on the rest. They may still have something to play for come week 17 - but only Baltimore can influence that by still winning.

    We'd also need Indy to not win enough games to clinch - hopefully they lose today and allow them and the other two AFCN teams to scrap it out at the end (I s'pose the ideal is if CIN has already clinched leaving PIT/IND to scrap it out).

    Then again, not really sure homefield matters as much this year considering the make-up. The last time neither Brady nor Peyton had at least 1 of the first round bye slots was 2008. The last time both were in but didn't have one was 2006. I can't see the Bengals or Colts winning in wildcard weekend at NE or DEN. Pittsburgh could potentially depending on health... but any of those 3 teams can go into Houston and win. The main thing is to get that bye as the divisional game is going to be tough - to return to the OP, yes, the not travelling so much helps a lot.




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