worry about maybe taking down, uh, the you're taking down the passing game following that.
So it's been interesting to see we don't know what's gonna happen necessarily, but just like potentially, there could be a dangerous team there that you don't want to face in the early part of the playoffs.
I would say that for the offensive side of the ball, the Vikings, they're a team that you don't want to see squeak in there.
And all of a sudden you gotta play a relatively high powered offense with the running game with the receiving game with rookie wide receiver Jefferson there, it's just not a matchup you wanna have to get into you. Like to.
You know, you'd like to see the Chicago Bayer's rise up somehow and grab that extra playoff spot as we welcome in Lawrence Owen joining the broadcast shaking head.
Which, by the way, we just finished.
Say, you know, uh, will supplement this year quickly, Lawrence for you as you join us.
I was running through the NFC and really just taking a look and noticing that Hey, if you're the Vikings, your five and six remember extra playoff position here is on the line with how Arizona has looked poor.
There's actually a path here for the Vikings.
Toe Somewhat easily.
Get into the playoff picture here if they could just win a couple of games. Eight.
Natal do the trick for you.
You could give Tampa one wild card spot.
You could give the other one to the Rams or to the Seattle Seahawks or to the Cardinals.
However, that shakes out.
But I just see a spot there where you're gonna be ableto really knocking on that door.
And if it's Chicago, I think everyone's excited.
If you're in the plasma, maybe you want to play that defense.
But the offense is so bad that I just don't see a team like the Green Bay Packers going.
Boy, I hate to see I hate to see Nick Foles or Mitch Strabinsky whichever way you want to slice it.
But the Vikings are dangerous offense, and the last thing you want to do in the playoffs is getting to a shootout scenario with some of these teams.
Oh, yeah, definitely some of these guys. Hey, I want to apologize.
I was supposed to been here when he went live as well, but I had a meeting last minute meeting with my school over Kogan situation.
So I had to go in and my phone I had no way of letting out of Wasn't even at home.
Um, but yeah, those No, no, that situation, that's yeah, I would.
It is kind of the that that whole situation of do you want to face the defense or do you wanna face the offense? And right now you're right.
Minnesota's offense is has been clicking for about a month and a half straight.
I mean, they've been they've been lightened it up out there.
Dalvin cook, Justin Jefferson, all of them.
Most teams wouldn't want to face him because, um, right, they say defense wins.
But you still gotta be able to move the ball on offense in order to score.
Yeah, And polls and Torbinsky both have just looked so awful lately.
Yeah, I I completely agree, but at the same time, I don't know if Arizona gives that spot of well, so let's run through a real quick here because I was breaking it down.
And remember, Arizona's a team that is on a losing streak, right? now and trying to find their way to game losing streak.
They have three games in division coming up with the Rams.
You'll see the ramps for the final game of the year, and then in Week 16, they get the 40 Niners, a team that for all that, we've seen them play poorly due to injuries.
They're starting to become tougher and tougher down the stretch here.
I wouldn't want to have to play those two divisional games with maybe the playoffs on the line.
Now they get sandwiched in between their My New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles.
But if you punch those two that you wanna punch those games wins against the Giants and the Eagles, and you could make a very strong case for that.
But then you're sitting there.
Still, you're only eight wins.
Like you know, there's a world where you finished eight and eight.
You're gonna have to win one of those division games to totally take control that wild card spot and make it really difficult for Minnesota.
I just e said before Kyler.
Murray is obviously progressing in his second year, but he is up and down week to week those performances are like the team up and down.
And I don't think that they have another gear defensively or some new wrinkle.
Remember, they'd be five and six if not for the hell Mary to nuke in the end zone there.
So they're one their one game away, one pass away from being below 500.
Right now, I just think that way came into this year.
Came in this year thinking I like Arizona.
I think they're gonna progress, but I don't know if they're quite there yet.
I got really hyped on him for a minute, and now I think I'm coming back down to Earth on them and saying, No, I really think it is your three for them.
Adding some more pieces to the defense and making this a complete team.
When I really start to get worried about them over, say, Seattle or over even, say, the Rams, for as many question marks, I may have about them as well.
But which team would you rather if let's say you was the package, you know, which team would you rather face in the playoffs? Arizona or Minnesota? They both They both have pretty impressive offenses.
Uh, errors Minnesota, You got a quarterback.
That doesn't really move a whole lot.
But they got a really great running back that could do just about anything that you need them to.
Plus a good passing game.
And with Arizona, you got potentially ah, guy with a passing game that could legitimately score a touchdown.
You know, at any point in the game at any time.
So it's kind of Ah, my goodness.
You know, how do you wanna, uh, fight in the playoffs? What? It becomes interesting, too, because we're talking about, you know, as far as the number one seed getting the bye week and no one else.
So in the NFC, you're still talking about the Saints and the Packers right there.
So all the way down the stretcher, both these teams are gonna need to keep checking winds until one of them has a misstep and you get a two game spread there and maybe you say Okay, it's comfortable enough.
And right now it's the Packers trying to chase the Saints.
Ironically, even without Drew Brees, they've been managed to get victories, get a little lucky with that matchup against Denver? Certainly, uh, this past week.
But yeah, so you know you're going to get the best team still trying to push for that number one seed in the NFC.
And listen, if you're any of these teams and your one or two seats or you be concerned about anyone you play, of course not.
None of them are going to say that, right? You're gonna go on with confidence, but I just think depending on who it is and by the way out of the because defensively, they're finding it where you go find even in all these scenarios, give me a really high powered offense.
I trusted my defense can give me a spark for a handful of Syria's throughout the game.
Green baited me.
It's like it's a balancing act when it's a middle of the road offense, defense kind of matchup.
That defense excels a little bit when it's against a really good offense, though I think you start to see they're not bad defense.
Put their average their middle of the road at best, and they're gonna get exposed.
I don't think the same time, the type of worry, so it will be interesting to think about how those matchups lineup depending on what happens specially NFC West.
That's really where that's really where it all comes down to, for me is like, What is the NFC West going to look like in two weeks? Because right now it's Seattle L. A.
And then Arizona.
Two weeks from now, it could be, you know, completely flipped.
And maybe Arizona goes on a winning streak.
They find themselves on top of the division.
It's funny that you're like, I'll take a mitigated Taysom Hill over Aaron Rodgers and he's not saying that because I'll take that person over that person.
It's the rest of the team S o plus, you know, is that good as compared to you know what, you have helming the weird thing to say because you don't hear that very often.
Yeah, and in the real reason to it, By the way, because remember, like think about late playoff runs to write like, why hasn't Aaron Rodgers been in more Super Bowls? It's not about Aaron Rodgers, you know, it's not about what he is.
It's about everything else and what you need to be able to rely on.
Why has Drew Brees been able to go to a couple of Super Bowls? Why, you know, maybe had more consistent and more consistent opportunities because there's been good years.
There were years where the defense was God awful, and it was all offensively predicated.
They couldn't quite get it done.
And then there's been years where the defense has been really strong and I always go back to this.
Your offense could be a phenomenal, but you need to be able at some point to say, I'm gonna hang my hand on the defense for a T Siri's and a key playoff game and know that they could go do it for me and until recently, this past game for the Packers, but also not a defense that turns the goal over, particularly either.
You know, they've been relatively neutral on that Turnover battle throughout the year is well, so that's the concern that you have as you get deeper into the playoffs and remember, You wanna talk about a matchup where, what? Some point here, although it was both already happened and it seems to be getting materially murkier as we move through with that rib injury if it ends up being that matchup and say the NFC Championship game.
Packers Saints, I'm gonna go Boy, are you gonna be able to do enough defensively Green today when the Saints at least get a Siri's off off the Packers often is when they shut them down a couple of times.
Are you going to be able to step up to that occasion and mitigate Taysom Hill, who either there's Taysom Hill? It's not gonna be saying right, so there's gonna run him.
He's gonna be another running back that they have.
And I guess the only downside for them is that you have seen the mitigation off the camera.
And some of the receiving weapons, like the Saints offense, is shifting into some type of weird, amorphous running blob machine tumbling towards the end zone so that that's weird to think about is they get to the playoffs as well.
E quarterback e.
A similar file Ravens tight office that they were running last year and direction, and it works really well because cases such a fantastic athletes at the quarterback position, but at the same time this year, when you have yeah, an offense that is predicated on that and has issues stepping back into a legit passing offense.
At times, it really hurts that team.
So there is a possibility that the way the states are playing right now with tasting at the quarterback position good legitimately get exposed.
Especially they go up against a team with a really good defensive coordinator.
Well, and and the difference there to being the Baltimore Ravens last year were preparing and building for that style of play.
The Saints didn't construct them.
You're you're mitigating those weapons.
And so even though it could be successful, you're still looking at and say right, But at some point we need to be able to use what I do, unfortunately, have to get out of here relatively quickly with some other meetings ahead.
But before we dio, because Lawrence did make the effort to themselves here and we obviously understand schedules happened on the flip side on the NFC, where I had highlighted, Um, that's a much more exciting conference right now, when you're talking about coming down the stretch because behind Kansas City, you get to say, well, Tennessee and your and your Colts are very much in a back and forth.
Flip it, pick it kind of battle there in the South and even in the A F C North.
In spite of Pittsburgh being 11 and no, you get the Cleveland Browns and the Baltimore Ravens and really change in a hurry.
And then I spent a lot of time on this, so we don't have to belabor it.
But I know Ray route wherever he is, the New England Patriots are still in a position toe.
Mix it up in the A f c East, and I did not think that I would say about a team one whose five and six and it is very slim, right? And the real point that I made around it was the best thing that you can say if you're the Patriots is one.
This wasn't the expectations that you'd be able to pull this off potentially, but just the fact that they can muck it up The fact that they can make it messy for the Dolphins or, you know, the Bills are up there ahead of them right now, when I look at their schedule just before they're gonna get the charges in the Rams coming up both away games.
So, you know, listen, those air those air tossup games and knowing that the hard team to see what you think you're gonna get out of them.
But then they're gonna follow it with a game at the Dolphins, home for the Bills and then home for the Jets.
So they're gonna win that game the last game of the year.
We know that much if all of a sudden they pick off, even if they lose the next two weeks and they're five and eight, but sweep the division at the end of the season, you can just start throwing wrenches all over town and be a team that's their 18 8.
That would be an accomplishment unto itself, whether you're in the playoff picture or not.
And there is a world where a win over the next few games and you go.
So you're telling me that I could get 29 and seven and I can also steal winds from the division and most most specifically, it's Miami.
Miami has to keep a really tight.
I hear for a good as they've been throughout this year, they are on the edge every time they lose a game.
They have to be looking at that wild card situation and watching New England and saying, Boy, we are right on the edge of having a really good year and still not getting into the playoffs.
Oh, yeah, yeah, It's weird that that you're looking at the East and going well, there's there's three potential playoff teams in that in that division there in the S.
And the leading one is not New England.
It's the one that is fighting to try to get in there.
Um, but yeah, New England has an opportunity.
Thio really mucked things up as you, as you say, especially even if they don't make it in.
Like you said, I mean that they could not the bills into a situation where they're in a a fight for their lives.
Because what if Miami goes on the terror? I mean, they're in a pretty good situation right now, where Miami goes on a tear right now and Buffalo starts losing a few of these closer games.
You don't know? Um, I haven't looked at the schedule for Buffalo, so I don't know who some of their tougher games are on first.
Pretty sure they play Pittsburgh pretty soon, so that that's a situation where you gotta have to keep a close eye on because it Buffalo has to play New England on Pittsburgh.
I wouldn't even another one more goods.
Good team in there.
Buffalo legitimately could end up losing the East from Miami if Miami goes on a terror.
Yeah, well, that was a little bit.
That's what we talked about. Two.
It's your point, because, um, yeah, I know I'm a chop out here a little bit.
Hopefully, I'm coming clear for the moment, and we'll wrap it up as I start to lose my feet here.
But to your point, Lawrence, when you look at that schedule, the Bills have the 40 Niners, Steelers, Broncos.
Maybe you want to call that a layup and then Patriots and all in group the story on that, I really could.
I know he's talking out, but yeah, and lose three different three games.
I'm not saying they will.
There's a good possibility