2018-2019 NFL: Week 15

Thu
Chargers-Chiefs

Sat
Texans-Jets
Browns-Broncos

Sun
Cardinals-Falcons
Raiders-Bengals
Dolphins-Vikings
Cowboys-Colts
Buccaneers-Ravens
Lions-Bills
Packers-Bears
Redskins-Jaguars
Titans-Giants
Seahawks-49ers
Patriots-Steelers
Eagles-Rams

Mon
Saints-Panthers

(By the way, does anyone know of a website where I can just cut and paste a list that is similar to the one above–e.g., simple and not wordy?)

38 thoughts on “2018-2019 NFL: Week 15

  1. Chargers-Chiefs

    Impressive comeback by the Chargers. The Chiefs may not be a great defense, but I feel like they overwhelmed the Charger OL for significant portions of the game. Somehow Rivers and the Charger coaching staff adjusted and overcame this. (I think Chris Jones got hurt, too.)

    The Chiefs offense is impressive. They have so many ways to beat you. Andy Reid called some of his screens and they did damage as well. And now they have a playmaking QB. I felt like Mahomes’s scrambling slowed down the Charger pass rush–if they rushed too aggressively Mahomes would get out of the pocket, extend plays, and shred the defense with a big throw. I also like how the Chiefs can control the clock a little more.

    The thing is, the Chargers did an even better job, I think. And it wasn’t just running the ball. Rivers and Whisenhunt also do a masterful job of dinking and dunking the ball down the field. (By the way, Rivers didn’t have the greatest of games in terms of ball security. He’s lucky he only threw two and not three INTs.)

    1. He didn’t really seem to help their secondary, which has been vulnerable. But I think they had him on a pitch count as well.

      I feel like the Chiefs defense should be better. Their DL looks really good at times.

  2. Power Rankings

    1st Tier
    Saints, Chiefs, Chargers, Texans

    I have the Saints, Chiefs, Chargers, and Texans basically tied. The Texans just lost to the Colts, and putting them on the same level as those other teams may seem odd or wrong, but a part of me feels like people are overlooking them. To me, like the Chargers, they seem like a very balanced team–good on offense and defense, with no major weaknesses. (I haven’t carefully watched them, so I could be wrong, though.)

    The Saints are balanced as well, but their strength is more of their offense, while they’re a little vulnerable with their defense. I’d prefer the opposite. I think the key with the Saints is home field advantage, as they will be tough to beat at home.

    The Chiefs probably have the most vulnerable defense (and I scratch my head at that because their pass rush looks dominant at times). But they can do so many things on offense. Also, they can really do damage on ST. The X factor is if Mahomes can protect the ball and make plays in pressure situations. (He did so against the Ravens.)

    Rams
    They seem to be slipping a little, especially on offense. I don’t know if opponents have figured them out, or they’re breaking down. (I think they have a very old OL.) I’ll say this: If teams get pressure on Goff, I don’t like their chances. The exception is if their run game really come on, but somehow I don’t think that’ll happen.

    Patriots, (Edit: Bears)
    They just look old. Still, with the right scheme and gameplan, the Patriots can beat a lot teams. I still think the key is if the opponents can effectively utilize a lot of run-based sets with play action. (Chargers and Saints can do this, maybe Texans, too, but I’m not sure if they would.)

    Edit: I forgot the Bears. Their defense warrants consideration, but I have very little confidence in Trubisky’s ability to protect the football. He could throw for under 100 yards, and I think they could win, if he protected the ball. But I have minimal confidence he’ll do that.

    2nd Tier
    Cowboys, Seahawks
    Ravens

    I like the defenses of these teams–although I’m the least certain about the Seahawks (not sure if they’re turned a corner)–and I like that they can run the ball, and I’m probably the least confident about the Cowboys (especially if they face a really good defense). The Ravens have been running the ball well, but I have very little confidence in Lamar Jackson, especially in the two minute drill or if he has to overcome a big deficit.

    Colts, Steelers
    I’m not super confident about these teams. I’m iffy on how good the Colts are. With the Steelers, they just seem out of sorts. Plus, their defense doesn’t seem to be able to defend good spread offenses.

    Vikings
    They seem to be in real disarray, and I’m close to counting them out. Let’s see if the new OC can make a big difference. (This is possible since there seemed to be real dissension between DeFillipo and Zimmer.0

    I think I’m counting everyone else out. Or am I missing a team?

  3. Thoughts About Some of the Upcoming Games

    The Ringer guys (Mays and Clark) made a comment about the Saints and Rams that I agree with. If both teams don’t do well offensively–especially in the passing game–then their fans should be concerned. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Saints don’t do well. I would be a little less surprised if the Rams don’t do as well–especially if the Eagles sell out to stop the pass and dare the Rams to run all game.

    The Colts-Cowboys should say a lot about both teams. I would ask you guys to watch something, to test my theory–namely, that the Cowboys defense will do well if the Colts play mostly from the shotgun (utilizing the type of offense we associate with Doug Pederson, John DeFilippo), and if they struggle if the Colts utilize a more pro-style offense, with Luck under center, lots of running and play action. I tend to think the Colts should especially do the latter because they have a fairly strong OL, and I feel like they might be able to bully the Cowboys in the run game.

    With the Steelers-Patriots, I’m expecting the Patriots to utilize a lot of spread/shotgun (even though they’ve shifted to a lot of running via a pro style set). Steelers defense has struggled with this–and I’m curious to see if this is the same.

    I also think Steelers should use pro style set, run and use play action, but I suspect they’ll play from shotgun. My predict that the Patriots defense will be quite impressive against the latter, but look very vulnerable against the former.

    1. I would actually be more surprised and add to that the fans should be concerned if the Saints cannot run the ball effectively. In the first half of the Tampa game, yes the Saints were not passing the ball effectively, but I thought even more concerning was they were not running the ball effectively. Although I didn’t see a whole lot of the second half of the Tampa, New Orleans game the Saints seem to have gotten their RBs involved and that’s what turned the game around.

      I’m not sure how much the Cowboys want to win, which is why I wouldn’t put a whole lot of stock in this game. Dallas pretty much wrapped up a playoff spot. I guess they could be fighting for a number 3 playoff spot, but a number 3 or 4 spot shouldn’t really matter. It seems highly unlikely that the Cowboys could catch the Rams or Saints and get a bye in the first round of the playoffs. That being said, I would be surprised if Colts can run against the Cowboys. That doesn’t mean I disagree that the Colts should utilize a more pro-style, but I think teams have to pass the ball to move it affectively against the Cowboys. Even when the Cowboys didn’t have as much talent on defense, they were hard to run against under Marinelli. Now with the super LBs they are even harder to run against. Teams that can throw the ball and throw it well especially to their secondary guys (TEs and slot receivers) seem to cause the most problems for this Cowboy defense.

      1. I would actually be more surprised and add to that the fans should be concerned if the Saints cannot run the ball effectively.

        Here’s my thinking: The Panthers are really bad at defending spread passing attack. This type of offense is something the Saints have been good at under Payton. If they struggle in this way, I think that’s a sign of a deeper problem.

        I’m not sure how much the Cowboys want to win, which is why I wouldn’t put a whole lot of stock in this game.

        I would be surprised if this was the case, and I think this would be really bad if this were true. The Cowboys clearly established that they are a great team. They need to keep playing well–both to get into a groove and to gain confidence. On offense they still have a lot to fix in my view.

        By the way, I feel the same about the Seahawks. They should play well for every game here on out. If they secure a playoff stop after this weekend, their approach should be very close to must-win mindset. If players are not fully healthy, it would be OK to play them a little less than you normally would, but other than that, the approach should be the same as if you have to win this. The Seahawks have not proven to anyone that they’re really good,and in fact the inconsistency is a sign that they’re really not. They also have a lot of young players. They’ve got to get in a groove and gain confidence.

        That doesn’t mean I disagree that the Colts should utilize a more pro-style, but I think teams have to pass the ball to move it affectively against the Cowboys.

        But you can pass from a pro style offense. My guess is that if they pass (and run) a lot from the shotgun/spread, the Cowboys defense will be in control of the game.

        Even when the Cowboys didn’t have as much talent on defense, they were hard to run against under Marinelli. Now with the super LBs they are even harder to run against.

        I thought that, too, but my impression is that they’re not as good against the run–or maybe not as good as I would expect. The Panthers ran well against them, and if I recall correctly, the Seahawks did fairly well, too.

        The Colts aren’t a run-first team, so I suspect they won’t do run a lot, especially from a pro style offense. But they have an OL that could do damage. And if you play action pass off the run, I think the Colts could get their pass game going.

  4. Seahawks-49ers

    My general impression: The Seahawks were awful, specifically in terms of penalties. I understand this is the most the Seahawks were penalized (in terms of yard) in franchise history, and that’s totally believable. Even if you take away the penalties, the defense is shaky. It’s pretty clear that they’re not very good–they’re too inconsistent to be considered a really good defense. Maybe they’ll get hot, but I don’t think they’re very good. I also think they should attempt to improve the OL next year.

    Cowboys-Colts

    I wasn’t expecting this outcome. The game is hazy right now, but my general impression is that the OLs for both teams were the difference. I want to say that Prescott’s performance wasn’t that great, although there were some drops, too (especially by Olawale).

    The game didn’t support my theory that the Cowboy defense would do well against Reich’s shotgun/spread based offense. I think the Colts even ran better from the shotgun then from under center.

    Eagles-Rams

    This was a surprise; and I would be worried if I were a Rams fan. Earlier in the season, Don mentioned something about figuring out the Rams offense, and I wondered if there was anything to figure out–as the Rams OL seemed really good and they were creating a pick-your-poison situation. But now it seems like teams have figured out the Rams–or the Rams OL is breaking down, or Cooper Kupp’s absence is making a big difference. I tend to think Kupp is not the difference maker because the OL just doesn’t look as good. The way they’ve been playing, I wouldn’t consider them one of the best OLs.

    As Goff has been under pressure, it seems like his confidence and groove that he has been in has left him. And it’s not just him, but the entire offense. (It seems like more players are dropping balls now, too.) Goff is also now turning the ball over (and the muff punt was obviously huge as well).

    I’ve heard people thinking Foles might be better–or that the Eagles’ struggle was due to an injured Wentz. I’d pump my brakes on that because the Rams defense isn’t that great. Let’s see how the Eagles look against a better defense.

    On a side note, I tend to think the change in tempo has been a key reason for the Rams success–rather than the OL being great. That is, the changes in tempo and play design has made the offensive roster look way better than it actually is.

    Patriots-Steelers

    Two venerable QBs competing to see who would lose the game for their team. Brady’s INT in the red zone was awful (similar to Wilson’s against the Vikings), and his passes at the end of the game were pretty bad. But Roethlisberger also had too INTs that could have cost the Steelers the game.

    Steelers beat the Patriots playing from the shotgun, which is a bit of surprise. (By the way, they had one running play where they’d toss the ball or hand it off, with the play going to the right and the RB would run to the left. The Patriots struggled to defend this.) I tend to think this speaks to the fact that the Patriots aren’t that good.

    I’d be concerned if I were the Patriots.

    Buccaneers-Ravens

    I don’t know about stats, but when I watch the Ravens, I feel like they’re the best running team in the league. They’re basically running a college-option offense–and defenses seem to be having a hard time stopping them. (I’m not sure if they’ve played a good defense yet, though.) If they can maintain a lead, they could go far in the playoffs, I think.

    Dolphins-Vikings

    I don’t if the Dolphins defense is that bad or DeFilippo just wasn’t good at designing run plays, but the Vikings ran the ball well. Interestingly, I didn’t think this translated to significantly better defense by the Vikings. The Vikings defense looks good, but not great. At the same time, at one point, it seemed like they kept sacking Tannehill.

    Titans-Giants

    Derrick Henry was a one-man wrecking crew. He seemed like the entire offense, and it seemed like the Giants couldn’t stop him.

    Packers-Bears

    In terms of accuracy, I feel like this was one of the worst games I’ve seen by Rodgers.

    Raiders-Bengals

    I don’t know what the stats say, but Carr didn’t look good. And if this is the way he played all season (and he’s not hurt), I’m downgrading my opinion of him.

    1. Nobody saw the Colts-Cowboys result coming, but something you got wrong was the Colts running the ball 33 times and throwing it 27 times. Luck had 6 rushes, and since I can’t tell how many were by design and how many were meant to be passes, you can add those to whichever category you want and I won’t complain.

      Baltimore ran for 242 yards.

      Tony Kornheiser spoke this morning about how four weeks ago, the teams you thought were easily the best (Rams, Patriots, Saints, Chiefs) are no longer looking like cake-walks through the early playoffs, and how some other, recent surgers look like if they went all the way, you wouldn’t be too surprised. I wonder if we’re looking at more evidence of the sustainability, season-long, of better defenses and strong running games.

      Khalil Mack has 12.5 sacks this season. The Oakland Raiders have 11.

      I’m curious about how the Texans looked. Did you get to look at that one?

      1. Nobody saw the Colts-Cowboys result coming, but something you got wrong was the Colts running the ball 33 times and throwing it 27 times.

        What’d I get wrong?

        Baltimore ran for 242 yards.

        Well, that matches with the eye test–and not just this week, but ever since Lamar Jackson played. (The other game I’m thinking of was against the Falcons. Both defenses aren’t very good so that should be kept in mind.)

        I wonder if we’re looking at more evidence of the sustainability, season-long, of better defenses and strong running games.

        My impulse is to disagree–even the teams with a good defense and run-based offense have been up and down. (See Cowboys and Seahawks.) The overall theme this year, in my opinion is inconsistency; the only thing consistent is that teams are inconsistent. Another way of saying this: There aren’t any exceptional teams. There are a bunch of good teams, but not much more than that.

        I’m curious about how the Texans looked. Did you get to look at that one?

        Oh shoot, I forgot to mention that. Jets hung tough the whole game, and had a chance to win it. But the Texans did drove the ball down and got the lead at the end, and then the defense secured the victory–and they did both of these in rather convincing fashion.

        So while the Texans didn’t look great, they did what a good team should do against a mediocre one. Add the Texans to all the teams that are good, but not great. (I think the team that has come closest to looking great is the Saints and maybe the Chiefs.)

    2. I watch parts of games, but didn’t see all of any game. Dallas was not on TV, but based on me following the game, they seem to be able to move the ball. I think at the half the Cowboys and Indy was just about even in terms of offensive yards and TOP. But I mentioned that Dallas’ may not have a great desire to win this game. I didn’t mean consciously, but they really didn’t have much to play for and I’m going to guess it showed. Add to that, guys who would normally play if it was a must win game like Martin and Tavon Austin chose not to. But I could be wrong, since listening to Dallas insiders, there seems to be a panic that this team cannot win down the stretch (end of season, playoffs).

      Before this week I was going to say that I would have Houston behind both the Cowboys and Seahawks. I don’t trust Watson nor do I think the Texan’s run game is as strong as the Cowboys and Seahawks. I still feel that way, but this week definitely doesn’t justify my thoughts as both the Cowboys and Seahawks lose.

      Mitchell mentioned Baltimore, and I really like their chances if Lamar can stay healthy. They remind me of another Harbaugh team, the Niners with Kaep (not as dominate a defense, probably but in the same vein). But this Baltimore team may be a little better on offense, because they seem to know their identity, and are willing to keep running the ball. I think I would have Baltimore over the Texans as well.

      1. I don’t trust Watson nor do I think the Texan’s run game is as strong as the Cowboys and Seahawks.

        I actually trust Watson–and in terms of creating off a scramble or broken play, he is on par with Wilson and Mahomes. (I’m not talking about crazy Tarkentonian type scrambles.)

        But I think it’s fair to say their run game isn’t as good as the Cowboys’ or Seahawks’. But they have a option/misdirection run game that seems effective enough. Their defense is in the same range as the Cowboys and Seahawks–although I don’t think they’re as good if the Cowboys play up to their potential, and they seem more consistent and reliable than the Seahawks defense.

        Mitchell mentioned Baltimore, and I really like their chances if Lamar can stay healthy. They remind me of another Harbaugh team, the Niners with Kaep (not as dominate a defense, probably but in the same vein).

        This is a good comparison. (The Ravens also have Greg Roman as a run-game coordinator or some offensive position.) I just have very little faith in Jackson if the Ravens have to throw the ball a lot.

        1. Yeah, but Lamar and Kaep is probably in the same class in terms of protecting the football. The difference as I see it, Baltimore seems more willing to stick to the run than that Niner team. I want to Kaep is slightly a better passer though.

          1. You’re probably right about ball security, but the Ravens have an easy time sticking to the run because they’re completely gashing their opponents that I’ve seen. And they haven’t been behind. Against the Chiefs, at the end of the game, they had to pass a lot in shotgun. The way it looked, the Ravens had no chance. (The Chiefs got pressure on Jackson, too, so it wasn’t only his fault.)

  5. Saints-Panthers

    The Panthers shot themselves in the foot with turnovers. Another thing: I’m pretty sure Cam is not healthy. I think this affected his passing, but also you could tell he wasn’t really going to run the ball much, which is a big part of their offense. (By the way, I really like Norv Turner’s play calling. I think Carolina should keep Rivera, and I assume Rivera would keep Turner.)

    The Saints ran the ball well. The troubling thing is that their passing game didn’t look at that good and if it wasn’t for the Carolina turnovers, they could have easily lost this. Still, it is positive sign that the Saints offense is versatile enough to be able to run the ball.

    1. I heard in a previous game, Cam was taken out when it was time to throw the hailmary. Add to that the second string guy is not known for having a strong arm. So yes he must be hurt.

    2. This Saints team is looking more like they did last year with Brees averaging under 200 yards passing. I think the last four games he didn’t break 200? They converted to a run team and it seems like this is what they are moving to coming down the stretch this year too.

      1. I can’t remember what the Saints looked like at the end of last year, but how do you feel about them after this game? Did it seem like the Saints had control of this game? It didn’t seem that way to me, and I would be worried about them–particularly the way the offense looked. I love the fact that they were able to run the ball, especially from a pro style set–but Brees and the passing game did not look good in my view. They’ve gone from a high-powered offense to a far more modest one. This wouldn’t be so bad if they had a great defense, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. The Panthers OL isn’t good, and Cam doesn’t seem to be able to run and throw in his normal way. The lack of running really limited their option run game, which is a big part of their offense.

        In terms of the who will win the Super Bowl, the field is quite large and very wide open. What makes predicting this hard is the potential for one of these teams to get on a roll. There are many teams that you could say this about, and that’s one of the reasons winning the Super Bowl is wide open.

        1. Actually we seem to have flipped sides on the Saint’s defense. I get the sense you are less enthusiastic about them, where I have more confidence in them. I had them in the vein of the Cowboy 2014 or 2016 defense, but lately, I get the sense this defense can be much more dominate. I wouldn’t say they are as good as the good defenses today (Which you pointed out are not that good.), but I think they are probably top ten. Add to that, the Saints have a good to great ball control offense which can really help that defense. The high flying offenses seem to have peaked too soon, but what I like about the Saints is they have better balance then the other teams. I feel like with the Rams, the formula is to take away Gurley, and let their WRs beat you, but the receivers don’t seem like a great group especially without Cupp. With the Chiefs, it’s limit the big plays. That is easier said than done I know, but that’s a formula and see if defenses can make them earn their TDs. With the Saints, it’s not one thing. I think like the Rams, defenses are trying to take away the backs, either running or receiving, but a guy like Michael Thomas can really hurt you if a team concentrate on the RBs too much. I think with the Panthers and Cowboys their LBs are talented enough to take on those RBs without much help, but other teams will not have the luxury. I’m not saying the Saints are a lock, but I definitely have them above the other teams in a tier by themselves despite them not blowing out their competition like they were earlier.

          1. I wouldn’t say they are as good as the good defenses today (Which you pointed out are not that good.),…

            That seems pretty close to where I’m at. The defense got way better since the first quarter of the season, but they’re still not a really good defense. They’re below Bears and Ravens, probably Vikings as well. Are they on par with Chargers and Texans? It’s possible–it depends on how they play. But against the Panthers, I would put them below all those teams. And this with a banged up Panthers offense, and being fairly well-rested because the Saints offense did a decent job of keeping them off the field (I think). If the defense looked more dominant, I’d think I would be closer to what your position.

            …but what I like about the Saints is they have better balance then the other teams.

            I tend to agree, although I think the Chargers (if they have Gordon) and the Texans have a chance to be included here. What the Saints showed yesterday is that they have the capability and willingness to play a more ball control style. I think Whisenhunt might do this–and even if he doesn’t put Rivers under center a lot, the Chargers can dink and dunk fairly well. I’m far less certain if the Texans would or could play in this style.

            I’m not saying the Saints are a lock, but I definitely have them above the other teams in a tier by themselves despite them not blowing out their competition like they were earlier.

            Yeah, I no longer have them in a tier by themselves. They don’t have to blow out teams. If they play a more ball control style, they can control a game. The Cowboys did that to them. Seahawks did that against the Vikings. I don’t think the Saints did that against the Buccaneers or the Panthers. If they don’t really control the game against the Eagles, if it’s close, I think that will just reinforce my position.

            To me, home field will be huge for them. I think if they get home field throughout the playoffs, they will be tough to beat.

          2. I think you meant the Steelers, they play the Steelers next. The Saints dominated TOP against Carolina and at some point against Tampa Bay, I’m going to guess you would have thought this game is over and it was pretty early. No?

  6. I think you meant the Steelers, they play the Steelers next.

    Oops, I thought the Saints were playing the Eagles. The Steelers don’t seem to be a great team against the spread offenses, although they seemed fine against the Patriots. I’m not sure if that’s because Brady, Gronk, and Edelman have declined, though. In any event, my sense is that opposing teams have figured out a way of slowing down the Saints passing game. Another bit of evidence for this is the Saints signing Dez and then later Brandon Marshall. It suggests that they believed they didn’t have enough talent at that position, and that maybe defenses found away to counter Payton’s schemes. That’s my theory, anyway.

    I’m going to guess you would have thought this game is over and it was pretty early. No?

    You mean–because the Saints controlled the ball against the Panthers, I would have expected the game to be “over” earlier? If so, I do lean that way, although I’ve never had signs that the Saints could be a dominant defense, so maybe I wouldn’t have had that expectation.

  7. Raiders sign Nathan Peterman. I knew whoever picked him up was going to be the subject of ridicule, but I’m super interested in seeing him get a chance to be someone’s backup. Redemption, baby.

    1. Raiders sign Nathan Peterman.

      Oh man, that’s just perfect. I’m shaking my head.

      Redemption, baby.

      You’re really that optimistic? There is very little I see to make me feel optimistic about Gruden and the Raiders. Didn’t he trade a draft pick (albeit a low one) for Bryce Petty, only to cut him a few weeks later?

      1. If you could provide a basis for this that I found compelling, that would make me happy. I feel like we’re returning to the last years of Al Davis.

        1. There should be some basis for the optimism, though–or at least there shouldn’t be a strong basis for pessimism.

          By the way, I did see some signs of optimism in the pre-season–or at least evidence that Gruden valued the running game, and I latched onto that. Given my feelings about Gruden prior to the Raiders hiring him, I was surprised that I actually had some degree of hope and positive feelings going into the season.

        2. Reid said:

          There should be some basis for the optimism, though–or at least there shouldn’t be a strong basis for pessimism.

          This is not how I go through life, and I don’t recommend it as a way to go through life.

          1. I have a feeling we’re not on the same wavelength.

            If there is compelling evidence for being pessimistic, I assume you don’t advocate ignoring that evidence and taking an optimistic view–especially one that is completely inappropriate to the situation.

            As for how I would react in that situation, I don’t advocate for giving up all hope, but one shouldn’t generate a level of optimism that is disproportionate to the situation.

            With the Raiders, if one doesn’t want to abandon all hope, I think that’s a reasonable response. I don’t think there is enough evidence to completely give up. At the same time, there’s a certain level of optimism that seems inappropriate.

          2. What if there’s equal amounts of evidence to be optimistic and pessimistic? Do you just have no expectations at all?

  8. What if there’s equal amounts of evidence to be optimistic and pessimistic? Do you just have no expectations at all?

    Or your optimism or pessimism wouldn’t be very strong. Another way to say this: You’re uncertain.

    1. Uncertainty is an implied part of being hopeful or not being hopeful. I’m asking you which way you lean when the evidence to support optimistic feelings or pessimistic feelings is roughly equal.

      Because what’s the real cost to approaching uncertainty with feelings of optimism, especially for such low-stakes things as football fandom?

      1. To me, there’s almost always uncertainty. The question is, how much. If there is a lot of evidence for either optimism or pessimism, then the uncertainty is relatively low. If the evidence is equal for either, then then uncertainty is relatively high.

        I’m asking you which way you lean when the evidence to support optimistic feelings or pessimistic feelings is roughly equal.

        I don’t think this is a good thing, but the honest answer is that I tend to lean towards pessimism, in general. I’m trying not to be this way, though.

        Because what’s the real cost to approaching uncertainty with feelings of optimism, especially for such low-stakes things as football fandom?

        Nothing. But when there is overwhelming evidence against optimism, I’m not comfortable taking being very optimistic. For me to do this in this circumstance would be lying to myself.

      2. Is it difficult to be a parent with an outlook like this? You don’t have to answer, but I’m curious. I’m trying to imagine my relationship with my students if I approached life similarly and I don’t think I would have lasted long.

        1. Is it difficult to be a parent with an outlook like this?

          Off the top of my head, I don’t think so. The original context was football, specifically my favorite football team, and in that context I tend to be more pessimistic, I think. My tendency is to worry and be more of a half glass is empty person.

          In the context of dealing with people–e.g., my child, employee or co-worker, etc.–I don’t think I lean towards a pessimistic view. That is, I don’t think there is little hope that they will turn out well, succeed, be a good employee, etc. if the evidence can support either position.

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