Disclaimer here, since I have already given up on the season, this article will not be about the matchups that will decide the outcome of the game, but rather the matchups I am most interested in monitoring.
Gus Bradley vs. Mike Kafka
Coach that was snubbed of the head coaching position versus the most likely next head coach of the team according to Vegas. While Kafka probably will not end up coaching the Colts, it is also rather unlikely that Bradley is still with the team once the season ends, not because of poor performance, as his defense has been above-average all season long, but because of the fact that Irsay will probably clean house. Bradley will get a chance to showcase his talents for the rest of the NFL and perhaps even for Irsay as he gets ready to face off against a challenging Giants’ offense that has surpassed expectations this season.
Kwity Paye vs. Andrew Thomas / Evan Neal
Kwity Paye has been having an underwhelming sophomore season, as he ranks just 8th in pressures and 10th in PRP on players from his draft class, and 24th on PRP when you include players from the 2020 and 2019 classes, which is definitely not great for a former first round pick. Andrew Thomas and Evan Neal have been having two very different seasons, as Thomas has emerged into one of the top tackles in the entire NFL while Neal is still adjusting to the big leagues. Paye will get the final two weeks to showcase he is far from his ceiling and that he could become a weapon in the future.
Alec Pierce vs. Fabian Moreau
35 catches, 536 receiving yards, and a couple of touchdowns as a rookie, with three different quarterbacks, and such a lackluster offensive cast playing alongside him is impressive, so I am really high on Alec Pierce. He will get a favourable matchup against cornerback Fabian Moreau, who has struggled a bit this season. Hopefully he can finish his rookie year on a high note.
Grover Stewart vs. Saquon Barkley
Grover Stewart being snubbed from the Pro Bowl is just flat out idiotic, and shows how overrated and useless that event really is. Stewart has been having himself the best season of his young career, and at times looked even more important for the defensive line than DeForest Buckner. Saquon Barkley has re-emerged as one of the premier backs in the NFL, so it should be fun watching these two battle it out.
Bernard Raimann vs. Kayvon Thibodeaux
Don’t look now, but Bernard Raimann has been among the best 15 tackles in the NFL for the past couple of weeks, which is certainly encouraging considering he was considered a raw prospect coming out of college with just two years of experience playing football at all. Kayvon Thibodeaux has been solid this season, and looks the part of a dominant edge rusher for the next decade, so it should be a fun test to see how far Raimann has gotten.