Sunday, October 23, 2011

Woe and 16?

The Indianapolis Colts, Miami Dolphins and St. Louis Rams will wake up on Monday morning still wondering when (and if!) they will win an NFL game this season.

Based on my informal examination of the teams' remaining schedules, I think it's a fair bet that at least one of them will go 0-16.

Despite having scored only 56 points over their first 6 games, I don't think the Lambs...uh, Rams...finish perfectly imperfect.

Over their final 9 games, they play the Arizona Cardinals (currently 1-5) and the Seattle Seahawks (2-4) each two times. Recognizing the obvious flaws in those teams, the Rams ought to be able to beat at least one of them at home. The team's other 5 games are likely to end in defeat, so the prediction here is that the Rams finish 2-14.

That brings us to the Dead Fish, oops, Dolphins. They appear to have the strongest team among their fellow inepts, but they also face the most difficult schedule over the final 10 weeks of the season. Contributing to their woes is the knowledge that two winnable games (at Cleveland and vs. Denver) ended with narrow defeats that sapped morale and could lead to their head coach being axed.

There are three home games where a win could be found -- Nov. 13 vs. Washington (3-3, but impressing few people); Nov. 20 vs. Buffalo (4-2, but a team that has been awful in recent years); and Dec. 4 vs. Oakland (4-3, but another team that has lacked success in recent years).

The guess here is the Dolphins will somehow find a way to win one of those three and finish 1-15. But all bets are off if the players reach a point in the season where they simply quit.

The Dolts...uh, sorry, Colts appear to have two chances to win before the end of the season. They host an awful Jacksonville team (1-5) on Nov. 13 and then an inexperienced Carolina team (2-5) two weeks later. At the end of the season, the Colts also travel to Jacksonville, but the Colts seem to have little chance of winning anywhere on the road this season.

The Colts are the most likely team to go 0-16. In fact, considering that they've given up more points than their inept brethren and have precious few games where a win could be had, the prediction here is that Indianapolis will be spelled Indianapollllllllllllllllis (that's 16 L's, so don't count) at the end of the NFL season.

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