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Posts Tagged ‘ Houston Texans ’

NFL: Seahawks Gallant Stand

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Week twelve of the NFL season is now behind us, and the action will keep coming thick and fast, as the traditional Thanksgiving set of three games comes on Thursday. That will barely give us time to catch our breath and try figure out what happened on Sunday, with teams really jockeying hard for position.  The race is on in the AFC West and NFC East, somebody is going to feel hard done by in the AFC North and, eventually, someone will have to win the NFC South. But there are a lot of great games to come in the NFC West, so get ready for more titanic tussles to come. Let’s review the action.

Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (3-19)

This was undoubtedly a statement win for the Seattle Seahawks, who wore down their division-leading opponents by controlling the battle of field position. Only surrendering three points to a team that was previously 9-1 is a clear sign that the Seahawks are ready to rally down the stretch. It can’t have been hard to get fired up for this do-or-die battle in front of the Twelfth Man, but the Seahawks really stepped up on defense for the first time since the season opener. The defensive front got massive pressure on Drew Stanton, allowing them to play twenty of their twenty-five offensive snaps in enemy territory. That they only put up nineteen points is a slight concern, but the win was most important here. Next up- San Francisco on Thursday night. Another critical fixture. Continue reading

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NFL: Cardinals Braced For Showdown With Seahawks

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We are now firmly headed down the stretch, as we enter week twelve of the NFL regular season. Several teams are just playing out the clock now, but guys on losing teams have to play for next year’s job, so expect a few more shock results this weekend. There are once again plenty of intriguing clashes between playoff hopefuls, and there are a few teams who have started to skid out of playoff contention in the last few weeks. Losing streaks need to end now, or the post-season will be gone. Let’s preview some of the upcoming action.

Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks

This is the big game in the NFL this weekend. The reigning Super Bowl champions take on their divisions leaders in a must-win home game. The Seattle Seahawks are reeling, having been second best against Kansas City last weekend. They have struggled to find a coherent game plan on offense all year, while the defense has been ravaged by injuries. Important bodies have started to return, but others are now gone instead. The Seahawks defensive front, which was so boasted about on their championship run, hardly bothered Alex Smith last weekend, and didn’t come close to stopping Jamaal Charles.  If Seattle wants the chance to defend its crown in the post-season, then they simply have to take this game. But it is hard to see them pulling it off. Pete Carroll’s team need a spark. Continue reading

NFL: Patriots And Cardinals The Ones To Catch

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Another huge weekend has just whizzed by in NFL land. The big results just keep coming and coming and, as teams realise that they are already running out of fixtures, each win is more satisfying and each loss more damaging to the hopes of football in January. There were also some pretty stunning upsets, with the St. Louis Rams taking down the playoff chasing San Francisco Forty-Niners.  It is those kind of losses that can be pivotal come season’s end, especially with a multitude of teams chasing the wild-card berths in the NFC. Let’s review the action here.

Denver Broncos at New England Patriots (21-43)

The people suggesting Tom Brady was over the hill look pretty dumb right now. The New England Patriots won this clash of the titans at a canter. Brady was immaculate, throwing 33/53 for 333 yards and four touchdowns. Admittedly there was a second half interception to slightly take the gloss off the numbers, but Brady was immaculate. With Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman taking off for just under two hundred yards between them, it is fair to say Brady had his way with the defense. But the narrative of Brady being better than Peyton Manning in colder conditions is probably unfair. The Patriots actually did most of their damage playing into the wind. Every home advantage is different, and you can make a case that New England benefits from playing in Gillette Stadium as Denver do playing in Mile High. That Pats defense should get a lot of credit too. They are banged up, but the new guys made a big impact, particularly Akeem Ayers, who sacked Manning on 4th and 6 when the game was still right in the balance. Continue reading

NFL : Patriots And Broncos Square Off

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We are over the halfway point in the NFL regular season now, and time is running out for teams in the race for the playoffs. Things are starting to really heat up, and the fixtures are just getting bigger and bigger. This weekend will see clashes between old divisional rivals, the hot new contenders and, of course, we’ll have the bout of the NFL’s best two quarterbacks of the last fifteen years. It’s all set for a tremendous weekend’s action, so let’s take a look at what’s coming up. Continue reading

The NFL London Franchise Conundrum

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This weekend will see the struggling Atlanta Falcons take on the high flying Detroit Lions. It is a big fixture for both these sides, who each need the win. The Falcons are 2-5, but still somehow remain in contention for the NFC South crown. The Lions are leading the way in the NFC North, but only by a tie breaker over the Green Bay Packers.

Yet that introduction completely misses the biggest aspect of this particular clash. The venue will be Wembley in London, England. It is the second of three games to be played in London this year, as the NFL looks to increase its market and potential abroad. The London series has been a fixture since 2007, and this is the first year that three games have been played there. But what are the long term future plans for the NFL in London? Continue reading

NFL: Patriots Bounce Back To Crush Bengals

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Week five’s results are in, and with no undefeated teams left in the NFL, it is clear now more than ever that any team can beat anyone else on any given Sunday. Every division remains extremely tight, with at least two teams in the hunt for divisional honours and a playoff spot. Let’s take a look back at the action from week five.

Arizona Cardinals at Denver Broncos (20-41)

A necessary win for the Denver Broncos, and one that they had to work hard for. The positives can be found primarily under one man’s name: Demaryius Thomas. In the first three games, the wideout had a combined 141 yards. On Sunday, he more than doubled his season total, gaining a stunning 226 yards, off a mere eight passes, with two touchdowns to boot. Peyton Manning picked on the Arizona secondary, and Thomas tore them to shreds. The return of Wes Welker has allowed Thomas to return to playing out wide, and he has made the most of his opportunity. It wasn’t all good for the Broncos though. Their own secondary continued to struggle while an NFL-ready quarterback was playing, while the struggling run game is likely in even more bother, with Montee Ball likely out for some time with a groin problem. Continue reading

NFL: Battle Of Texas Tops Weekend Schedule

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Week five of the NFL is coming at us this weekend, with a number of tantalising matches between potential contenders to choose from. The likes of Arizona, Cincinnati and Denver are coming off byes and return fresh, while still in a strong position in their divisions. At the other end of the spectrum, there are a number of teams who appear in early-season crisis mode. Whether it is a crisis of confidence, a leaky defense, an underwhelming offense or just a team struggling in transition, there’s still time to turn things around. Let’s look ahead to this weekend’s clashes.

Arizona Cardinals at Denver Broncos

You would think the Denver Broncos, playing at home and coming back from a bye week, would be comfortable favourites to beat just about any NFL team right now. This game will be no cake walk for them, though. The Broncos have struggled running the ball, ranking 27th overall in the league. This is an offense that can cope if they focus on the aerial game, with Peyton Manning still delivering at a phenomenal level. But, by his own admission, Demaryius Thomas is not “playing at my highest potential right now”, so a few extra yards on the ground would ease the pressure on Manning. Their pass defense also needs a lot of work, with only the Jacksonville Jaguars’ secondary giving up a higher average of yards through the air. The Broncos bye week came at a good time, and how effective their adjustments are may be seen on Sunday. Continue reading

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