Divisional Round: Sunday Slate

January 12, 2019

Divisional Round action wraps up on Sunday with two great matchups. The first game features the Chargers on the road at the Patriots followed by the Saints hosting the Eagles. The final two spots in the conference title games will be up for grabs.

Let’s examine each of the two contests:

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (13-4) AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (11-5)
Sunday 1:05 p.m. airing on CBS
Opening line: Patriots -5
Record against the spread: Los Angeles (9-7), New England (9-7)
Series: Patriots lead 24-15-2
Previous week’s results: Chargers over Ravens 23-17, Patriots over Jets 38-3 (Dec. 30)
Patriots won last matchup with Chargers 21-13 (Oct. 29, 2017)
AP Ranking: Chargers and Patriots tied at No. 5

Rankings:
Chargers offense: Rush (15), Pass (10), Overall (11)
Chargers defense: Rush (9), Pass (9), Overall (9)
Patriots offense: Rush (5), Pass (8), Overall (5)
Patriots defense: Rush (11), Pass (22), Overall (21)

Notes and Sundry thoughts – New England 2-1 in previous playoff meetings with Los Angeles…last playoff meeting, Patriots beat Chargers in 2007, right before losing Super Bowl and perfect season to the Giants…Phillip Rivers and Tom Brady will have oldest combined age in a playoff matchup in NFL history…Chargers 8-1 on the road, this season…Rivers is 1-7 against New England, 0-4 in Foxborough, and 0-2 in postseason. Only win came when Brady was hurt and Matt Cassel was New England QB…Melvin Gordon (885 yds, 10 TDs) was removed from the injury report, Friday, will play…considered top Tight End on the depth chart back in training camp, Hunter Henry is listed as questionable for the game…Bill Belichick has coached most playoff games (39) and has most wins (28) in NFL history…Patriots are 4th in scoring offense (27.3 points per game) and 6th in scoring defense (20.3 ppg)…Brady has four TDs and six interceptions in a pair of playoff games against the Chargers, but is 2-0…rookie Sony Michel (931 yds) led team in rushing and was 15th in NFL…New England did not have a 1,000-yd receiver…Julian Edelman led with 850 yds while James White hauled in the most receptions (87) and TDs (7)…Patriots tied for third in INTs (18) and were fifth in turnover differential (plus-10)…Patriots 8-0 in Foxborough, this season.

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PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (10-7) AT NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (13-3)
Sunday 4:40 p.m. airing on FOX
Opening line: Saints -10
Record against the spread: Philly (6-9-1), New Orleans (10-6)
Series: Eagles lead 17-14
Previous week’s results: Eagles over Bears 16-15, Saints lost to Panthers 33-14 (Dec. 30)
Saints won last matchup with Eagles 48-7 (Nov. 18, 2018)
AP Ranking: Eagles #12, Saints #1

Rankings:
Eagles offense: Rush (28), Pass (7), Overall (14)
Eagles defense: Rush (7), Pass (30), Overall (23)
Saints offense: Rush (6), Pass (12), Overall (8)
Saints defense: Rush (2), Pass (29), Overall (14)

Notes and Sundry thoughts – After beginning his NFL coaching career in Philadelphia, Sean Payton is 2-0 in his coaching career against the Eagles in the playoffs…Doug Pederson played college football at Louisiana-Monroe (known as Northeast Louisiana when he was there)…Pederson is 4-0 in the playoffs with Andy Reid (10) only Eagles coach with more wins…Eagles 22-3 when scoring first, under Pederson…Nick Foles has thrown two-or-more TDs in three-straight postseason games…Foles has completed 82.6% of his passes for 431 yds, thrown 5 TDs, and compiled a 132.9 passer rating on third and fourth down in last four games…Alshon Jeffery with 301 yds and three scores in four playoff games…Michael Bennett has a sack in three-straight playoff games…Jake Elliot has made eight-straight field goal attempts in the playoffs, including four from 40-plus yards…neither Foles, nor Darren Sproles, played in two teams previous matchup…Saints undefeated (5-0) at home in playoffs since Payton became head coach…Drew Brees completed 74.4% of his passes, highest single-season mark in NFL history, and set record for most passing yards in a career (74,437) and most completions (6,586)…Brees has completed 67.8% of his passes, averages 305.8 yds per game, and has totaled 12 TDs in five home playoff games…Brees turns 40 next Tuesday…Alvin Kamara ranked second in NFL with 18 total TDs (14 rushing, 4 receiving)…Mark Ingram has 645 yds and 6 TDs in 12 games, in 2018…Michael Thomas led the NFL with 125 receptions and set a franchise record for most receiving yards in a season (1,405)…Cam Jordan had 12 sacks in 2018, his fourth-career 10-plus sack season.

  • Categories: NFL

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