Geno’s Minor League Mashup Week 6: The Playoff Push
Welcome to the “SFLm Playoff Push!” This week, we’ll be looking at what each team needs to do to make the playoffs (not playoff scenarios), and we’ll have a simplified predictions segment.
ALBUQUERQUE: WIN COMFORTABLY
There really hasn’t been anything truly wrong with the Atoms this season. Ty Ptak hasn’t had the best season, but he’s made it work. All that the Atoms really need to do is get comfortable wins. 4 of their 5 games have been within one possession, with the other being a 25-12 loss to Annapolis. If they can go 2-1 throughout the rest of the season, they’ve got a good chance at stealing a playoff spot.
ANNAPOLIS: LIMIT TURNOVERS
The scoring offense/defense has been there all year, with both sides ranking third in their respective categories. However, they’ve just had too many turnovers. Turnovers are what killed them in both of their losses, with 3 combined turnovers in the two games. If they can limit those against San Jose and Madison, they’ll be on the road to a playoff berth.
LEXINGTON: DON’T WORRY ABOUT 8-0
Let’s be honest, Lexington is making the playoffs. That’s not what they’re focused on. They want 8-0. However, fate tells us that an 8-0 team is due for a poor playoff performance. To all of you in Lexington: Play your brand of football. 8-0 should not be the goal. There’s more than the regular season.
LINCOLN: FINISH DRIVES
It’s not the best look when your kicker has more FG attempts than extra points. The scoring has been decent, with both the offense and defense ranking top 5 in their scoring categories. Just let Logan Lee and Kenny Slider do their thing in the red zone, and you’ve got yourself a spot in the semis.
MADISON: SWITCH UP THE OFFENSE
Madison is a defensive team. That’s always been the case. But, Switch Thumper hoped to spark the offense coming into this season. He hasn’t quite done that. I want to see more runs out of this offense. I want to see Sheppard Vakarian get a chance to show his skills. If they can use him effectively while still throwing some strong passes, they’ll be able to hold their spot in the playoffs.
OTTAWA: GOOD LUCK
This hasn’t been the season Ottawa has hoped for. There are only one or two possible outcomes that have Ottawa in the playoffs, and that starts with the Cavalry winning out. Then, they need to hope that only 2 of the 6 non-Lexington teams ahead of them end with 4 or more wins. If that happens, there mathematically has to be a tie at 3-5, so they would have to win that tiebreaker against the group. It would have to line up perfectly for Ottawa to steal a spot.
SAN JOSE: TOUGHEN UP
From what I’ve seen of San Jose, they haven’t been playing very tough. I want to see this defense put up a fight on every play. They’ve been the second worst scoring defense this season, only being “worsted” by Tacoma. If this defense can improve, and this offense can stay consistent, then San Jose has a shot at finding a path to the playoffs.
TACOMA: STOP THE INTS
Let’s all agree that King Jackson hasn’t been the best this season. I really want to see him cut down on the risky throws this week. If I had play calling duties for this offense, I’d be relying on some shorter routes. If KJ can regain his composure this week, the Grizzlies have a shot at sneaking into the playoffs.
WEEK 6 PREDICTIONS
Geno's Record: Week 4 1-2 ---> Total 7-5 (.583)
TJ's Record: Week 4 2-2 ---> Total 5-11 (.313)
Jay's Record: Week 4 1-2 ---> Total 3-3 (.500)
Slinn's Record: Week 4 3-1 —-> Total 3-1 (.750)
Total Prediction Record: Week 4 7-7 ---> Total 20-21 (.488)
MADISON @ LEXINGTON
Geno: Madison struggles to game plan against the stout Miner defense, as Lexington wins 28-17.
TJ: Lexington carves out the W, 24-17.
Jay: No prediction (Coach)
Slinn: Call me crazy, but this could be the week that Lexington loses its 100% record. Yes, the Lynx suffered somewhat of a 'shock' defeat to the Atoms last week, but the match-up with the Miners looks favorable. Both teams are in love with the passing game, but Lexington turns the ball over far more. With Ricky Phillips storming around the end and Danny Carmichael lurking in the secondary, the Lynx could put enough pressure on Chad Moore to force terminal mistakes. Madison to cause a minor upset - 28-24.
SAN JOSE @ LINCOLN
Geno: San Jose continues their win streak, winning 31-24.
TJ: Lincoln blows out the Flight, 31-17.
Jay: Lincoln takes it 27-23.
Slinn: The Flight dominated Tacoma in Week 5, the 24-point winning margin the largest in this season's SFLm. The offense were typically ferocious and the defense put in it's best performance of the season. Lincoln overcame a stubborn Ottawa squad to keep themselves in the postseason conversation with a record of 3-2. There can be no understating - this week is HUGE for both these teams. It will be the tightest contest of the week. Pffft...San Jose to take it, 31-25.
OTTAWA @ ALBUQUERQUE
Geno: Ottawa finally gets a win, 31-28.
TJ: The Atoms barely take it, 24-22.
Jay: Albuquerque blows out the Cavalry, 34-10.
Slinn: If this was an Ottawa home game, I'd be fairly confident they would take their first victory of the season and give themselves a chance of not claiming the SFLm wooden spoon. As it happens, they must travel to Albuquerque. Homefield advantage is going to be key in a close matchup like this one. Neither squad have covered themselves in glory this season, although the Atoms did get one over the Lynx last week. Albuquerque's offense appears to be pretty effective, however the defense has been surprisingly leaky. Don't expect Ottawa to take advantage. Tyreek McCall has had a torrid time under center this season and the Cavalry rarely look like scoring more than 20 points. Atoms to triumph at home - 22-13.
ANNAPOLIS @ TACOMA
Geno: No prediction (Coach)
TJ: Annapolis barely takes it, 27-24.
Jay: Tacoma pulls the mini-upset, 26-23.
Slinn: Can Tacoma stop Chris Grant Jr. and break their losing streak? No. They can't. Not much more to say about this one. The Grizzlies losing run will continue and they will join Ottawa as a team with zero chance of reaching the playoffs. Annapolis to take their win total to four - 28-10.