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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / 5 Takeaways from Conference Championship Weekend: Dan Campbell blew it, Lamar is NOT Elite, Spags can coach and much more

5 Takeaways from Conference Championship Weekend: Dan Campbell blew it, Lamar is NOT Elite, Spags can coach and much more

Publish Date: 01/29/2024
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

This was a great weekend of NFL football as we watched four great teams lay it on the line to go to the Super Bowl. Both games came down to coaching; one set of coaches won their team game, and another team’s coaches lost the game. So, let’s take a look at our biggest takeaways from this past weekend.

1) The Lions lost because of Dan Campbell’s decisions

The Detroit Lions dominated the 49ers, leading 24-7 at halftime. The Lions defense shutdown the vaunted 49ers offense while the Lions offense ran the ball at will. All of that changed with one simple stupid decision by Lions Head Coach Dan Campbell. After the 49ers cut the lead to 24-10, Campbell decided to go for it on fourth down well within field goal range. Goff’s pass bounced off Josh Reynold’s hands, and the game changed.

The rejuvenated 49ers got hot on offense as Deebo Samuel started making plays, and Quarterback Brick Purdy got hot. The Niners took a 27-24 lead midway through the 4th quarter. The Lions responded by driving the ball into field goal range, and on 4th and three, they went for it again instead of tying the game up.

The Lions then went down 34-24 and had one last desperate drive with all three timeouts left they got into field goal range, but instead of cutting the lead to seven points with 90 seconds left, they continued to try for the touchdown, which they did get with a little under a minute left but they had to burn a timeout to get it and the game was over.

The 49ers did not get a comeback victory; the Lions, specifically Dan Campbell, choked the game away; in the post-game press conference, he should have said this is on me, and I will learn from this, but he didn’t. Most teams that blow a game like this disappear, never to return, and I am worried that will be the Lion’s fate also. Campbell has done a remarkable job with this team, but he let his team down on Sunday. Remember, he lost in Dallas because he attempted a two-point conversion three times, and he obviously did not learn his lesson, and I doubt if he will ever learn it.

Video: Dan Campbell Postgame PRESS CONFERENCE vs. 49ers NFC Championship Game LOSS

Dan Campbell Postgame PRESS CONFERENCE vs. 49ers NFC Championship Game LOSS “I LOST THE GAME.”

2) Lamar Jackson is not an elite Quarterback

As he has shown in past playoff performances, Jackson is worlds away from being a Patrick Mahomes of Joe Burrow. Jackson is a different player in playoff games, and his lack of composure was telling on Sunday. I will say the Ravens not running the ball is enough to make your head shake, the game plan was poor, and the quarterback play was dreadful.

When a play was called, Jackson would look at his wristband and then call that play, never once from what I saw changing a play. I will give Jackson the excuse of still not having enough weapons, but his play was horrible, especially for a man about to win his second MVP. It also shows you that being an MVP is nothing more than a popularity contest. Out of the four Quarterbacks that played on Sunday, Jackson was the worst.

Video: Film Study: THEY CHOKED: What went WRONG for Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens Vs the Chiefs

Film Study: THEY CHOKED: What went WRONG for Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens Vs the Chiefs

3) The MVP of Sunday’s AFC Championship game was…

Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo’s defensive scheme completely confused the Raven’s defense in the first half. Chris Jones was the best player on the field Sunday and dominated the game. The Chiefs kept their rush lane integrity for the most part during the game and limited any explosive plays that the Ravens usually make in the game. The Chief’s defence is better than the Ravens, no matter what the experts tell you, and that defense is why they will be going to another Super Bowl.

Video: The Chiefs Defense is a (literal) nightmare.

The Chiefs Defense is a (literal) nightmare.

4) The Ravens are a dirty, undisciplined team

This was the main reason the Ravens lost this game: they got stupid penalty after stupid penalty. As they fell behind, you could see them lose their composure. The game was over when you watched Lamar Jackson slam his helmet off the ground in frustration. The Ravens still don’t have enough weapons, but in the end, their lack of composure did them in.

5) Brock Purdy is not elite, but he is closer than Lamar Jackson

Purdy struggled in the first half, but with the game on the line, he played a great fourth quarter. He even used his legs to gain important yards, as my buddy said during the game he looked like John Elway in the fourth quarter.

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