AUTHOR’S NOTE: This is the last of my sports posts for a while (I promise). As the old-time TV announcers used to say after a test of the Emergency Broadcasting System: “We now return to our regular program.”
In my last post I did a “retake” of a reading for a game between the Buffalo Bills and the Detroit Lions that will occur sometime during the autumn of 2022. I already discussed the projected scoring track for the two teams but only briefly mentioned the on-field conduct of the game. The cards were very revealing in that regard as far as substantiating the scoring outlook so I wanted to take a few minutes to discuss them. The Bills are represented by the top row of the layout with the Lions in the bottom row. I consider this a “new style” analysis because it uses a “prepared” deck that only includes cards that can produce legitimate scores according to NFL scoring conventions, either by a single number or by addition or multiplication of that number. (By way of example, any “7” – a single touchdown – would double into “14” – two touchdowns in a quarter as reflected by Temperance, or triple into “21” – three touchdowns as expressed by the World; two 7-point touchdowns and a field goal would be reflected in “17,” the Star). For information, here are the quarter-by-quarter scores as they appeared in the reading.
1st Quarter: Bills 9, Lions 6; 2nd Quarter: Bills 26, Lions 12; 3rd Quarter: Bills 32, Lions 15; 4th Quarter: Bills 32, Lions 22. Final Score: Bills 32, Lions 22
In the 1st Quarter the Bills play a defensive game (9 of Wands) to avoid injuring any of their offensive stars against the much weaker Lions. For their part, the Lions make a couple of good calls (the Lovers) against the Bills’ powerful defense and manage to turn them into field goals (the Lovers as “6”).
In the 2nd Quarter, the Bills are playing at the top of their game and open up a substantial lead (the Star as “17”) with two unanswered TDs and a field goal. The Lions “give the ball away” too often (6 of Pentacles) through fumbles and interceptions and only manage to grind out a couple more field goals (another “6”) on the ground.
In the 3rd Quarter the Bills are “coasting” (6 of Swords) and will perhaps experiment with their passing game (the 6 of Swords is an “Air” card, although the “6” implies either two more field goals or a touchdown with a missed extra-point kick), while the Lions offense goes soft (the benign Empress) with only one more field goal to show for their efforts (the Empress as “3”).
In the 4th Quarter the Bills empty their bench to give their second-and-third-string players some field time, so they may not score again. The Lions manage to finally sneak in a touchdown on a lucky pass (7 of Swords is an “Air” card, so maybe a tricky “option play”).
This narrative coupled with the more precise scoring model has me convinced that this could very well be the way to go for predicting the upcoming season’s games.