The Game Ball Thread: AFCCG at the Chiefs

DJnVa

Dorito Dawg
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
46,621
After change of possession why can't it be illegal use of hands by an offensive player in a block? Blockers downfield can be called for illegal use of hands, even if it is most commonly called at the line, so long as it's a forceable use of the hands or forearm and contact is made above the shoulder pads in the act of the block by an offensive team.
Because the rule doesn't say "forearms"?

Not being snarky, but the penalty says hands.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

Found no thrill on Blueberry Hill
SoSH Member
Sep 9, 2008
32,934
AZ
It talks about thrusting your hands. So, maybe.

I guess if you thrust your hands at an opponents head and don't hit him with the hands but do hit him with the forearm it's hard to believe it's not a penalty, but I'm not an expert certainly. I mean, if your forearm hits a guy in the head in the act of blocking the player on offense it's hard to see where you wouldn't say that your hands were not thrust at an area above the frame, since they are connected, but I don't know the interpretation.
 

EddieYost

has a special friend in GHoff
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
9,316
NH
What about unnecessary roughness?

Never mind. I see all the stuff you guys are talking about are specifics under the unnecessary roughness rule.

Carry on
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

Found no thrill on Blueberry Hill
SoSH Member
Sep 9, 2008
32,934
AZ
Of the four major sports, I find the NFL's rules to be the least intuitive in the sense that the "why" is not always obvious. You kind of have to just look at it like a code of rules and you're either on the ok side or the not ok side and it may or may not have anything to do with advantage gained or whatever.

So, I accept that it could be completely legal to forcibly strike a defensive player in the head (so long as it's not a punch) in order to try to prevent him from making a play. Seems like it "should" be a penalty, but that's not reliable for NFL rules.

It was a pretty rough play.
 
Last edited:

Deathofthebambino

Drive Carefully
SoSH Member
Apr 12, 2005
35,945
I would like to get to the bottom of this rule myself. Just for reference, here is the play, with multiple angles and slow motion:

https://www.chiefs.com/video/daniel-sorensen-picks-off-tom-brady-after-deflection

As usual, the NFL rulebook is way too goddamned complicated (and I know I say that as an attorney, which is the pot calling the kettle black). I think this all comes down to whether or not you think JE is in a "defenseless posture" under the rules. Here is the rule:

https://operations.nfl.com/the-rules/nfl-video-rulebook/defenseless-player/

It is a foul if a player initiates unnecessary contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture.

  1. Players in a defenseless posture are:
    1. A player in the act of or just after throwing a pass (passing posture)
    2. A receiver attempting to catch a pass who has not had time to clearly become a runner. If the player is capable of avoiding or warding off the impending contact of an opponent, he is no longer a defenseless player
    3. The intended receiver of a pass in the action during and immediately following an interception or potential interception. If the player is capable of avoiding or warding off the impending contact of an opponent, he is no longer a defenseless player.
      Note: Violations of this provision will be enforced after the interception, and the intercepting team will maintain possession.
    4. A runner already in the grasp of a tackler and whose forward progress has been stopped
    5. A kickoff or punt returner attempting to field a kick in the air
    6. A player on the ground
    7. A kicker/punter during the kick or during the return (Also see Article 6(h) for additional restrictions against a kicker/punter)
    8. A quarterback at any time after a change of possession (Also see Article 9(f) for additional restrictions against a quarterback after a change of possession)
    9. A player who receives a “blindside” block when the path of the offensive blocker is toward or parallel to his own end line.
    10. A player who is protected from an illegal crackback block (see Article 2)
    11. The offensive player who attempts a snap during a Field Goal attempt or a Try Kick

I think it's pretty clear that JE is no longer a defenseless "receiver," nor was it close enough in time to be "during or immediately following the interception." So that eliminates 2 of the 11 possibilities under the "defenseless posture" rules.

I think there are two potential avenues to finding JE in a defenseless posture. One that he was "on the ground." which falls under #6 and the other is #9, he is receiving a blindside block, which is defined by a block where the offensive player is moving parallel to or towards his own end line. I think #6 is probably the weaker of the two, in that JE isn't on the ground, but he's certainly going to the ground when he gets hit. But, I think #9 is pretty clear. The offensive player (in this case, the intercepting team) is most definitely moving parallel to the end line and thus, it becomes a blindside block and JE is in a "defenseless posture." I don't see any other reference in the "blindside" block category that says JE actually has to not see the hit coming, etc. I'd love to know why I'm wrong, but the way I read it, it doesn't matter if JE could have defended himself if he's being hit from the blindside. Once you decide to make a blindside block, you simply can't do the following:

Prohibited contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture is:
  1. forcibly hitting the defenseless player’s head or neck area with the helmet, facemask, forearm, or shoulder, even if the initial contact is lower than the player’s neck, and regardless of whether the defensive player also uses his arms to tackle the defenselessplayer by encircling or grasping him

 
Last edited:

JokersWildJIMED

Blinded by Borges
SoSH Member
Oct 7, 2004
2,338
There are two potential fouls, both added in the last few years:

12-2-7-b-1:

forcibly hitting the defenseless player’s head or neck area with the helmet, facemask, forearm, or shoulder, even if the initial contact is lower than the player’s neck, and regardless of whether the defensive player also uses his arms to tackle the defenseless player by encircling or grasping him.

This does not apply because Edelman is not defenseless. He recovers from attempting to catch the ball and turns to look for contact. The hit is not from the blindside.

12-2-8:

It is a foul if a player lowers his head to initiate and make contact with his helmet against an opponent.

The contact is not with the KC player's helmet, it's primarily with the arms and shoulder. This hit is a "BUN", Big Ugly Nothing.
I thought the rule was essentially added to take away the gratuitous hits that often happened to QBs on interceptions (while the defenders were attempting to "block" for the returner)...this seemed to fall in that category...not sure I agree that Edelman was not defenseless.
 

CFB_Rules

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 29, 2016
762
I thought the rule was essentially added to take away the gratuitous hits that often happened to QBs on interceptions (while the defenders were attempting to "block" for the returner)...this seemed to fall in that category...not sure I agree that Edelman was not defenseless.
QB is always considered defenseless by rule no matter what they do after a change of possession. Kickers too.

The contact is clearly a foul if you consider Edelman defenseless. But I don't. He recovers after the interception, reaches out to try to make a play on the ball carrier, fails to do so, and then is cleaned up. I see people quoting the blindside rule, which has two aspects, BOTH of which I think fail on this play as

a) Edelman is hit from the front, and
b) There is no argument that the blocker is moving toward or parallel to his own goal line. If a wide receiver were moving this direction before the snap, would you expect it to be called legal motion?
 

Prodigal Sox

lurker
Jul 15, 2005
231
between the buttons
If the league is truly concerned about player safety, head injuries, and concussions this type of hit/potential hit should be against the rules. They make major changes to kickoffs but allow this as legal under current rules?
 

Deathofthebambino

Drive Carefully
SoSH Member
Apr 12, 2005
35,945
QB is always considered defenseless by rule no matter what they do after a change of possession. Kickers too.

The contact is clearly a foul if you consider Edelman defenseless. But I don't. He recovers after the interception, reaches out to try to make a play on the ball carrier, fails to do so, and then is cleaned up. I see people quoting the blindside rule, which has two aspects, BOTH of which I think fail on this play as

a) Edelman is hit from the front, and
b) There is no argument that the blocker is moving toward or parallel to his own goal line. If a wide receiver were moving this direction before the snap, would you expect it to be called legal motion?
I'm not following the bolded part? Where in the rule does it say a "blindside" hit can't be from the front? And I don't know how the blocker isn't moving parallel to his own goal line. He's going directly across the field, parallel with both end lines at the time of the hit? I'm not sure what a wide receiver going in motion pre-snap has anything to do with this?

I'm going to quote just the part of the rule I think applies here:

It is a foul if a player initiates unnecessary contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture.

1. Players in a defenseless posture are:

9. A player who receives a “blindside” block when the path of the offensive blocker is toward or parallel to his own end line.

Prohibited contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture is:

  1. forcibly hitting the defenseless player’s head or neck area with the helmet, facemask, forearm, or shoulder, even if the initial contact is lower than the player’s neck, and regardless of whether the defensive player also uses his arms to tackle the defenselessplayer by encircling or grasping him
Is there more to these rules or other parts of the rule book that explicitly say anything else? Because if this is the extent of the rule, which is all I can find, there is nothing there that says Edelman being hit from the front would excuse the play? In fact, most of the blindside hit penalties I've seen this year have been from the front, with a few from the side. They are never from the back?

And you'll notice under the 11 sub-categories defining when a player is in a defenseless posture, 2 of them (#s 2 and 3) both talk about if the player has the ability to avoid the hit, the player would not be defenseless. However, that's not the case with respect to #9. If a player gets hit by a blocker who is running parallel to their end line, and that player forcibly hits them in the head/neck, etc., the fact that Edelman could have maybe avoided the hit is irrelevant. It's not an exception under #9 like it is under #'s 2 and 3.

I'm honestly asking, because I'm just not following along. I agree that Edelman is not a defenseless receiver, and he's not defenseless as to the timing of the interception. However, when Edelman became a defender, and then began to turn his body to go upfield, the offensive player launched and forcibly made contact with his head/neck using his forearms. The offensive player was moving parallel to his own end line at the time of the hit, thus making it a blindside hit. That's how I'm seeing it.
 

brandonchristensen

bad at game threads
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
33,543
I didn't realize how big Brown was until recently. I don't know how I missed it as I've seen virtually every game this year.

Are we going to re-sign him?
 

CFB_Rules

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 29, 2016
762
I'm going to quote just the part of the rule I think applies here:

It is a foul if a player initiates unnecessary contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture.

1. Players in a defenseless posture are:

9. A player who receives a “blindside” block when the path of the offensive blocker is toward or parallel to his own end line.
Sometimes parsing these rules can be a fun experiment in how bad the English language is at conveying ideas. This sort of thing happens to officials all the time when reading the book. You are reading the rule as a definition, i.e. "A player cannot receive a blindside block, (which is defined as a) block when the path of the offensive blocker is toward or parallel to his own end line."

However, the rule is actually two separate clauses, as in:

"A player cannot receive a blindside block, (IF THE) path of the offensive blocker is toward or parallel to his own end line."

You can see this illustrated in the NFL players manual when they created the rule, which is more specific.:

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d81c8823a/printable/leagues-official-player-safety-rules

"Blindside" Block. It is an illegal "blindside" block if the initial force of the contact by a blocker's helmet (including facemask), forearm, or shoulder is to the head or neck area of an opponent when the blocker is moving toward his own endline and approaches his opponent from behind or from the side.
 

williams_482

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 1, 2011
391
Here's the calculator: https://www.pro-football-reference.com/play-index/win_prob.cgi

A team starting at their own 20, 1st down, needing about 50 yards for a FG has about a 48% shot of winning.

I get what you're saying about the Chiefs versus an average NFL team, but there's only so many ways to parse the data--otherwise the sample becomes too small to be meaningful.
Unlike the now defunct Advanced NFL Stats WP calculator, which used the results from past games, the WP numbers PFR uses are generated formulaically from Expected Points numbers. This works pretty well for most situations, but it completely breaks down for end of half situations and others where the outcomes of one or two drives are crucial and teams have different strategic objectives than "score more points than they do."

I'm not aware of any publicly hosted WP calculators that use actual game data to drive their numbers.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
29,659
Hingham, MA
I wonder if the Pats would be in their 5th straight Super Bowl if they had simply never benched David Andrews in 2015
 

TFisNEXT

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 21, 2005
11,734
I wonder if the Pats would be in their 5th straight Super Bowl if they had simply never benched David Andrews in 2015
Or kicked a FG on one of the two 4th quarter drives that ended on downs inside the DEN 20. (And I say that thinking that going for it was the correct call each time given the circumstances)
 

staz

Intangible
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 2, 2004
17,926
The cradle of the game.
re: Mic'd up, favorite quotes:

after the negated pick due to the offsides penalty, Jules to #24 Lucas, "Good game, good game, bro"

"They said I lined up offsides........... was I?"
Yes, dumbass, you were - by about 4 feet.

"KAN SAHS CITY"
 

steveluck7

Member
SoSH Member
May 10, 2007
3,668
Burrillville, RI
re: Mic'd up, favorite quotes:

after the negated pick due to the offsides penalty, Jules to #24 Lucas, "Good game, good game, bro"

"They said I lined up offsides........... was I?"
Yes, dumbass, you were - by about 4 feet.

"KAN SAHS CITY"
Watching it again, I’m pretty sure it was 24 who was saying good game, not Edelman
 

koufax32

He'll cry if he wants to...
SoSH Member
Dec 8, 2006
8,216
Duval
Jules screaming “YOU’RE TOO OLLLLLDDDD!!!” In Brady’s face makes me want to run through a wall. I love how angry this team gets.
 

DJnVa

Dorito Dawg
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
46,621
Jules, on the bench yells something like "Keep the gas on!!" then says "I have no idea what I just said."
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 24, 2002
37,240
Forgive me if this has been posted but another game ball to Jules for consistently being the most hilarious talker in Patriots modern history.

 

Bellhorn

Lumiere
SoSH Member
Aug 22, 2006
2,328
Brighton, MA
Unlike the now defunct Advanced NFL Stats WP calculator, which used the results from past games, the WP numbers PFR uses are generated formulaically from Expected Points numbers. This works pretty well for most situations, but it completely breaks down for end of half situations and others where the outcomes of one or two drives are crucial and teams have different strategic objectives than "score more points than they do."

I'm not aware of any publicly hosted WP calculators that use actual game data to drive their numbers.
Thanks for sharing. I find it kind of shocking that this approach passes for state of the art in 2019. Is it really that hard to use dynamic programming or backward induction for endgame situations, then revert to expected points when a certain threshold of complexity has been reached?

Regarding the specific issue that the other posters were discussing: some years back, I modeled OT win probability using league-average drive outcome probabilities, and found that the true win probability for the winner of the coin flip was just under 60%. I would guess that this is still fairly close to being accurate; offenses have gotten even more powerful since then, but this is offset by the rule change requiring a TD to win on the first possession.

In any case, the official graph, with its monotonic increase for the Patriots throughout the OT possession, clearly has nothing to do with reality. (IIRC, this was DDB's original point).
 

Dick Drago

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 28, 2002
1,267
He seems like he has hit another level the last few weeks. Not just blocking guys, but flattening them—developing a mean streak.

I re-watched last night—a crucial play on the last drive in regulation was made by Patterson. It was 1st down, and was trapped 5 yards behind the line and somehow escaped and gained 3 or 4. A 2nd and 15 would have been a tall order.

Also Chris Jones got hurt—and wasn’t out there much in OT—the pocket was pretty clean. Brady didn’t have to worry about those big bear paws obstructing him.
 

Ed Hillel

Wants to be startin somethin
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2007
30,298
Here
I'd pay him more than Solder. He is younger, and better IMO. So I guess 4/$60.
It’s a tough call. You drafted a stud Tackle last year and Cannon is still good and relatively cheap, but could conceivably be cut and save 5 million (I’d say no way, but who knows). If there’s a market, Brown could be franchised and traded, but that’s risky.

That position is gonna be super interesting. I’d sign Brown if money is reasonable and keep depth at the position, knowing Cannon is aging and injury-prone.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
15,012
Pittsburgh, PA
OL depth is like starting pitching. Can't have too much of it. Especially not when our competitiveness is predicated on our HOF QB remaining upright.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
40,657
OL depth is like starting pitching. Can't have too much of it. Especially not when our competitiveness is predicated on our HOF QB remaining upright.
And one of the projected starters is coming off an Achilles injury. Brown would be a tough guy to lose.
 

SMU_Sox

queer eye for the next pats guy
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2009
7,781
Dallas
I'd pay him more than Solder. He is younger, and better IMO. So I guess 4/$60.
The great juggle this offseason is coming. Trent Brown, Trey Flowers, and about 20M of cap space. You can get that up to 30M or so with a few cuts but then you hit up against the great 2019 expiring contracts wall. The drama will continue after the SB. If both Brown and Flowers leave though they would most likely get 2020 3rd round comp picks. That's not much consolation. If they want to keep the younger guys on their roster something has to give.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
40,657
The great juggle this offseason is coming. Trent Brown, Trey Flowers, and about 20M of cap space. You can get that up to 30M or so with a few cuts but then you hit up against the great 2019 expiring contracts wall. The drama will continue after the SB. If both Brown and Flowers leave though they would most likely get 2020 3rd round comp picks. That's not much consolation. If they want to keep the younger guys on their roster something has to give.
If I’m the Jets, I’m throwing a boatload of money at Flowers. A big SB performance could put his already-high stock into a new stratosphere.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
15,012
Pittsburgh, PA
This could probably start its own thread, but...

Top cap hits for left tackles, $M - 2018 and Contract AAV:

1. Tyron Smith, DAL - $17.5 and $12.2
2. Russell Okung, LAC - $15.0 and $13.2
3. Eric Fisher, KC - $13.9 and $12.0
4. Trent Williams, WAS - $13.6 and $13.6
5. Riley Reiff, MIN - $11.4 and $11.7
6. Cordy Glenn, CIN - $11.2 and $12.0

Taylor Lewan (TEN) is at $16 AAV, but probably never sees that. Likewise, Solder had a low cap hit this year but is at $17, $17, $18 the next 3 years - if he doesn't perform in 2019, his dead cap is very low and he might be a casualty too.

So, I really don't think it's going to take $15M AAV to keep Trent Brown, especially not if he's emotionally bought into the team's quality and coaching and everything, and especially if we're willing to make a higher fraction guaranteed.