And if Cliff Mass has anything to say about it, we'll be facing a Dome passing offense in a 30mph wind storm :P Can't wait for this one - if the conditions are what they could be, we'll be glad Russell had the bye week to get his legs back.
NFL announcers are always talking about how Chip Kelly's* defenses get too tired to play effectively. BJOL readers scoff at this; if the offensive linemen are on the field for 63 plays and the defensive linemen also out there for 63 plays, why would the defensive end be more tired than the tackle? And, to boot, the DL is more likely to rotate ...
To no one's surprise, or at least not mine, James was contrarian on this and he was also right. In a recent Hey Bill he pointed out, simply, that the defense must be prepared for options A, B, C, and D, while the offense simply had to be prepared for option B.
I found this out when my son was 18 years old and I was 48, at which time he started beating me at 1-on-1 basketball. He figured out that I couldn't keep my wind up under constant pressure, and it became obvious to both of us that the time I could rest was when I was on offense. You don't have to be holding the ball at the top of the key to catch your breath; you can simply be backing down your opponent, knowing where you're going to go in four steps, and it takes much less physical tension.
It's axiomatic in chess, too. The very nature of "offense" -- attack -- is to create one too many attack options for your opponent to defend. ... Both of which are reasons I'm thoroughly convinced that -- as a general rule -- defense requires energy, and offense requires intelligence. You know what I mean.
In baseball there isn't a cardio factor involved. But the defense, which is the batsman protecting the strike zone, has to be prepared for many, many options, and the "energy" principle takes on the slight variation of "alertness" and "tension." The offense, the pitcher, is better off the more relaxed it is, and the more intelligent it is.
James used to have a 7-point checklist by which he projected SPs' future success. One was having gone to a major college. I think he's forgotten about that, but ... once again Dr. D gets a chance to celebrate Hisashi Iwakuma, and to predict a successful career transition for Felix Hernandez.
Does this week's Seahawks-Falcons game remind you of the buildup to Super Bowl 49? In the time BEFORE the Broncos game, it seemed that the Broncos had a lot, a lot, a lot of options.
Pete Carroll did what he always did: He took away most of your options by (1) giving you the 4-yarder, (2) punishing you for it, and (3) relying on math theory to create a punt before you drove 60 yards.
If the Seahawks take away Julio Jones (by doubling him), and keep the Falcons in front of them, and create pressure, I think it's an easy win. Collapsing pocket on Ryan, checkdown throws underneath on the first drive, I don't even care if they score. Just want to see that work.
Great game comin' up.