When you’re in the midst of a season full of exciting games featuring some of the best talents that the NFL has ever seen, it’s difficult to notice if a moment in time is going to have any lasting consequences or make any serious changes to the trajectory that the season is on. The longer the avid fan watches football and the more time they take planning out their wagers over the years, the more of a keen sense they develop about these things. They are more easily able to see patterns as well as cause and effect.
The benefit of hindsight and analysis makes the process of deciding on good NFL bets a lot easier. So, as we coast through the final few weeks of 2023, we can look back on the NFL games and the individual players that have made it onto the field this year, as well as decisions and actions taken by coaches and referees that have helped shape this season for better or worse. It’s easy to see from here which moments were make or break, how we got from point A to point B in any game or situation and what effect these sometimes seemingly insignificant events have had on the NFL year. Let’s take a look.
1. Comeback Kings
Without a doubt, one of the most incredible moments in 2023 NFL football, the Colts/Vikings game that was played recently, will go down in history as one of the most unlikely and unbelievable football comebacks ever to have been made. The Colts clearly overestimated the legitimacy of their second-half game plan and left the door wide open for the Vikings to take the game back and win 39-36. A total of 417 yards thrown by Kirk Cousins (his four touchdowns did not go amiss either) in the second half would have made the game worth watching on its own. Odds on favorite for coach of the year, Kevin O’Connell, led his team to victory in his first year on the job, and from a point which most fans and clearly the opposing team had deemed “no return.” Dalvin Cook took his game to a career-high and rushed 95 yards.
2. Derek Carr and Keelan Cole’s Magical Touchdown
The New England Patriots/ Las Vegas Raiders game was one to remember for a number of reasons, but the moment that will be remembered with much gnashing of teeth and rending of garments for some time to come, at least for one team’s fans, was that last-minute touchdown. Tying the game at 24, all with a paltry 32 seconds left on the clock, seemed too good to be true, but according to ref Ron Torbet, it was, in fact, a valid pass and score. The call was upheld by the NFL command center, and boy, were the Raiders fans overjoyed.
3. Trevor Lawrence VS Dallas Cowboys
If you’re playing the Cowboys and you’re down by a whopping 17 points in the second half, there’s only one man to call: Trevor Lawrence. The Jaguars’ quarterback has come into his own in a truly remarkable fashion. Lawrence saw the direction the game was headed in and seemed to decide to fix it all on his lonesome: and boy, what a fix. His three touchdown passes in under nine minutes gave his team the breathing room they needed to claw their way to a lead. The Cowboys squashed that lead soon after, but Lawrence rallied with a field goal drive in the final minute, taking the game into overtime, where Rayshawn Jenkins put the nail in the Cowboys’ coffin.
4. The Washington Commanders on the Way Down
The series of cascading failures that plagued the Washington Commanders in their game against the New York Giants was something truly heinous to behold. Taylor Heinicke’s incomplete pass to Curtis Samuel due to the Giants’ QB being stuck to Samuel throughout the play. Brian Robinson’s negated touchdown with 1:03 left on the clock due to what officials called an illegal formation on receiver Terry McLaurin. Many fans believe that some of the calls made during that game were some of the worst informed or just overall worst calls in NFL history.
5. Lion Around
Anyone who comes up against the Jets’ defense soon realizes they are no joke. The Detroit Lions were stuck in their web, trailing 17-13 by the two-minute warning. Thanks to Lion’s defensive coordinator Ben Johnson and his epically brilliant tight end delay, Ben Johnson was able to reach Brock Wright for a seamless 51-yard catch and run touchdown. If the Lions keep up these plays, their 7-7 standing may take them a long way.
How to Analyze Current Events for NFL Predictions
Analyzing current events can be a useful tool when predicting performance in upcoming NFL games. With the start of every NFL season, teams are faced with a number of challenges that can significantly impact the outcome of each individual game. Player suspensions, surprise injuries, contract negotiations, and weather conditions must all be taken into account to accurately assess the potential impact on an upcoming match-up.
To use current events successfully in predictions, it’s important to consider both how these occurrences affect the team in question and how they impact their opponent. For example, if one team recently released a key player or is facing disciplinary action due to off-field issues, it could significantly shift their odds against a particular opponent — as it would undoubtedly have an effect on both teams’ strategies moving forward.
It’s the many triumphs and defeats along the way that make NFL football what it is. What are your most memorable moments from the 2023 season?