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Trivia: January 22, 2018

Tom Brady just started in the AFC Championship for the 7th straight year. Who is the only other quarterback all-time who has started in 5 straight conference championship games? answer »

Around the NFL: Schottenheimer to the rescue?

The Seahawks are trying to switch gears offensively. They’ve fired offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and offensive line coach Tom Cable. They’ve got Mike Solari coming in to work with the offensive line, and they’ve got Brian Schottenheimer taking over as the new offensive coordinator. But is this going to help Russell Wilson and Seattle’s other key offensive players?   more »

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Around the NFL: Sunday morning injury updates

It's the morning of the games where we find out which teams we'll learn way too much about over the next two, lengthy weeks. And the injury reports are coming in, which promise an additional player in New England's backfield, and no apparent concerns for the key player on each AFC team.   more »

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Trivia: January 21, 2018

When New England and Jacksonville last met in a conference championship game, following the 1996 season, Drew Bledsoe and Mark Brunell started – two quarterbacks who played their college ball in the same state. Since that time, when is the only other time this has occurred – two quarterbacks who played their college ball in the same state going head-to-head in a conference championship game? The state in question is below average in population. answer »

Factoid: Passing inside the 10

I was poking around with some of the numbers – looking not so much at the conference championship games, but compiling numbers that can be used in research for the 2018 season (yes, we’re moving into that time). But as I look at passing performance inside the 10, the numbers might also shed some light on our championship games.   more »

24 Hours 'Til Sunday: Snapshot previews of the championship games

I wrote the Fantasy Index Weekly style previews during the week, so most have a pretty good idea of what I'm expecting from these games. But I'm wrong sometimes, and frankly have not done a stellar job with these playoff games (although would look a lot better but for that miracle play against the Saints last week). Would be sitting in the catbird's seat if Brees, Kamara and Thomas were still playing.   more »

Trivia: January 20, 2018

Rob Gronkowski has caught touchdowns in six straight playoff games. Who are the only two players all-time who've caught touchdowns in more consecutive playoff games? One of these guys is a Hall of Famer (but not the first guy you might think of). The other is a former seventh-round pick who was in the league for only five years. answer »

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NFL Injury Report: The injury report compiled after Friday's practices is posted

Daily team-by-team injury reports published by the NFL media office. Click through to download the PDF edition. . . . Week 20 Conference Championships injury report - Friday edition   more »

Scheduletron: Strength of schedule analysis

On Wednesday I submitted some numbers suggesting that strength of schedule played more of a role in 2017 than in typical seasons, with the teams in the two South Divisions affected by out-of-whack schedules. For the upcoming season (the one starting in nine months) the early numbers suggest the opposite will be true.  more »

Fantasy Index Weekly: Championship Round Rankings

Over the course of the week we previewed all four teams playing this Sunday. Now it's time to throw all those projections into one place and see how the rankings shake out. There are some Patriots near the top of course; they're our choice to score the most points. And some components of the Vikings passing game also look good (because it's very hard to run on the Eagles).   more »

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Fantasy Index Weekly: Championship Preview: Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings have the momentum of a dramatic win, and the excitement of potentially being the first team to play a Super Bowl in its home stadium. But unlikely they'll have a big game offensively. Minnesota had the league's best defense (yards and points) during the regular season, but Philadelphia's was nearly as good (4th in both categories). The Eagles were shockingly good at home, too, allowing only 11 TDs in eight games. Just one last week, and that was set up by a special teams gaffe.   more »

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Trivia: January 19, 2018

What player once carried the ball at least 36 times in four different playoff games? answer »

NFL Injury Report: The injury report compiled after Thursday's practices is posted

Daily team-by-team injury reports published by the NFL media office. Click through to download the PDF edition. . . . Week 20 Conference Championships injury report - Thursday edition   more »

Factoid: Position on the rise

I notice that kickers are scoring more points than they have in the past. They’re more accurate, they have better range, and teams are getting them on the field more often.   more »

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Fantasy Index Weekly: Championship Preview: Philadelphia Eagles

While there's a clear favorite in the AFC, Sunday's NFC title game could go either way. The Vikings are favored by 3 points (suggesting if this game were in Minnesota, they'd be about a 6-point favorite), but the over-under of just 38 is about the lowest you'll ever see, indicating points will be at a premium. One big play or two could be the difference in what should be a low-scoring, defensive battle. During the season, the Vikings were ranked No. 1 in both yards and points allowed. That's only slightly better than the Eagles, who were 4th in both categories.   more »

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