By: Ben Meyerson
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Here is in-depth analysis from each game around the league on Sunday:
- Bills @ Vikings (-17): Bills 27- Vikings 6
- Giants @ Texans (-6): Giants 27- Texans 22
- Green Bay @ Washington (+2.5): Green Bay 17- Washington 31
- 49ers @ Chiefs (-6.5): 49ers 27- Chiefs 38
- Raiders @ Dolphins (-3): Raiders 20- Dolphins 28
- Colts @ Eagles (-7): Colts 16- Eagles 20
- Titans @ Jaguars (-10): Titans 9- Jaguars 6
- Bengals @ Panthers (-3): Bengals 21- Panthers 31
- Broncos @ Ravens (-6): Broncos 14- Ravens 27
- Saints @ Falcons (-2): Saints 43- Falcons 37
- Chargers @ Rams (-7): Chargers 23- Rams 35
- Bears @ Cardinals (+6): Bears 16- Cardinals 14
- Cowboys @ Seahawks (-1.5): Cowboys 13- Seahawks 24
- Patriots @ Lions (+7) : Patriots 10- Lions 26
Bills @ Vikings (-17): Bills 27- Vikings 6
Wait, What Happened?!?
The Bills played out of their minds this week, you heard before the gems jokes about the Bills from analyst saying things like “it’ll be a win if they have all 53 men on the roster by the end of the game” (this in reference to Vontae Davis retiring at half time in week 2). This was defense and a little bit of magic from Josh Allen, Allen went 15/22 for 196 yards and 1 passing touchdown as well as 10 carries for 39 yards and 2 touchdowns. On the other side of the ball the defense going into the third quarter allowed 3 first downs and the Vikings hadn’t crossed the 50 yard line. The Bills forced 3 turnovers and had a great game. Did they prove they should be respected in the NFL after this? No they should not they still lost to the Ravens by 44 in week 1, this is more about the Vikings than the Bills.
The Vikings didn’t cover against the Bills? Okay it was a ridiculous line, wait they lost to the Bills? Okay on a last second touchdown? The BILLS DESTROYED and DISMANTLED THEM?!?! The Vikings were bad in this game, really bad. They couldn’t get past midfield till the 4th quarter and they turned it over in their own territory twice. This was all-around bad, like just awful. The Vikings are playing the Rams next week on Thursday and if they don’t get everything together, some bad momentum could hold this team back from their Super Bowl aspirations, they NEED to win next week.
Giants @ Texans (-6): Giants 27- Texans 22
Two Underperforming Teams
The Giants after two games are 1-2 and while they weren’t a lot of people picking the Giants to win the NFC East they were a hot wildcard pick. So far they don’t look good and a win against a 0-3 team won’t impress New Yorkers. Eli went 25/29 keeping the team under control and getting 297 yards, Saqoun went for 82 yards and a rushing touchdown averaging 4.8 ypc. The defense should’ve played better and although they got an interception and 3 sacks, this Texans team isn’t that good and 22 points is too much to let up.
The Bill O’Brien era might be coming to an end, they have an incredibly talented team; Deshaun Watson, Will Fuller, DeAndre Hopkins, JJ Watt, Jadeveon Clowney, Whitney Mercilus and Tyrann Mathieu. Bill O’Brien is hanging onto the incredible 6 game stretch by Watson last year, I think O’Brien is a good coach but people in Houston could be getting restless about a 0-3 start to the season. They couldn’t run the ball with Alfred Blue or Lamar Miller and Watson threw for a lot but he only completed 60% of his passes.
Green Bay @ Washington (+2.5): Green Bay 17- Washington 31
This is a missed opportunity by Green Bay, after tying last week and their biggest foe playing the Bills this was a must win. Green Bay should win these games on the road where they are favored of they expect to make it deep into the playoffs, but tonight they didn’t. They’re lucky that Vikings lost and the division isn’t too out of hand, lets say the Vikings win, the Packers would be third in the division. Aaron Rodgers struggled throwing 27/44 for 265 and 2 touchdowns, they were a mess running the ball with no back getting more than 6 carries. On the defensive side of the ball they did get 1 interception, but not a single sack and they let up 31 points on the road. Green Bay shouldn’t R-E-L-A-X because losses like this could come back to haunt them. Oh yah there was also another botched Clay Matthews roughing the passer call, so who knows what what they would looks like if they didn’t have the refs going against them.
Washington was balanced throwing 20 times and rushing 32 times (19 with Adrian Peterson), Adrian Peterson either drank from the fountain of youth or went back in time because he rushed for 19 carries 120 yards and 2 touchdowns. On the defensive side of the ball they got 4 sacks and Aaron Rodgers only scored 17 points and he’ll need a drink after this game (per his post game press conference), that’s a huge win. They got lucky because of another botched roughing the passer call. It’s still hard to judge this team because they’ve had cupcake teams so far and I don’t trust Alex Smith as much as everyone else.
49ers @ Chiefs (-6.5): 49ers 27- Chiefs 38
Patrick Mahomes is amazing, no he’s historic he currently on track for 4,779 passing yards, 69 passing touchdowns and 67% completion. That’s not a typo: 69 touchdowns would be insanity because no QB has thrown for 65 touchdowns or even 60, Peyton Manning threw 55 in one season but that’s it. Mahomes is also getting tons of help from Kareem Hunt who got 2 touchdowns, who knows if they come down to earth but for now it’s fun to watch. Mahomes needs to get help from the defense as the Chiefs had the number 1 offense and the number 32 defense coming into this game and they didn’t’t show anything to prove otherwise. They allowed 27 points and didn’t’t get a single turnover and if this team wants to win it all they need to button it up.
While I would love to talk about Kyle Shannihan’s incredible offense, this game is bad because Jimmy G has an apparent ACL injury (MRI’s are happening Monday). He got carted off the field and after the game head coach Kyle Shannihan didn’t sound confident in him being okay. This team was 0-10 without Jimmy G and they’re already thin with McKinnon being out for the season. This wasn’t going to be their Super Bowl season but this could derail the entire season. Fingers crossed 49er fans.
Raiders @ Dolphins (-3): Raiders 20- Dolphins 28
The Dolphins are 3-0?!?
The Raiders blew this, they were leading 17-7 and then the Dolphins scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter and Jon Gruden is still wondering where all of his pass rushers are. This is just ridiculous, one Khalil Mack has as many sacks and forced fumbles as the entire Oakland Raiders team through 3 weeks. They aren’t that bad they just aren’t good, like at all. Unless Derek Carr starts putting up Mahomes type numbers, Gruden’s title of QB whisperer will be stripped. This team is barren on dense and without Khalil Mack they have 0 pass rush and can’t get any pressure on opposing QBs. They need to make good use of the picks they got otherwise the Gruden move will be mocked for years to come.
The Dolphins are 3-0?!? This team got rid if their star players (Suh, Ajayi and Landry) and people thought this was a dumb power move by Adam Gase, it turns out this was a great power move by Adam Gase. The team is playing together and with minimal talent they are playing together and it’s showing. They had 4 passing touchdowns today, two turnovers and 3 wins. While they’ve faced teams with a combined two wins, who knows maybe an early confidence boost is what they’ll need to get to the playoffs.
Colts @ Eagles (-7): Colts 16- Eagles 20
Wentz is baaaaackkkkk!!!
The Colts are still rebuilding their roster and in games like this it shows, Andrew Luck led them in rushing with 33 yards and no running back had more than 20 yards. In the air T.Y. Hilton was the only receiver to get 50 yards, the next receiver had 33 yards. The offense line is better but they still need a lot of help for Andrew Luck. On the defense this team is improving and honestly they should’ve played much better as Wentz was playing for the first time since last season. They should’ve taken advantage of the Eagles weaknesses and they just didn’t.
Carson Wentz is back and he there for 255 yards, a touchdown and a pick. This was a perfect game for Carson to get back because the Colts are really bad he was allowed to knock some rust off while getting a win on his first game back. I believe that confidence is important for QBs and if he came back and loss it could’ve been catastrophic if he came back got sacked 6 times, picked off twice and lost by 2 scores. This game was good for him and it’ll be great for this team.
Titans @ Jaguars (-10): Titans 9- Jaguars 6
This game didn’t prove anything to me for the Titans, divisional games with a backup QB are weird. Titans have beat the Jags 5 out of their last 6 meetings, the Titans still have a rookie head coach and New England’s misfit toys. Mariota didn’t play today but they need to him to step up for the rest of this season (when he gets back). They got the Jags off their best win and they were riding high, this game doesn’t mean anything and they need to be better moving forward.
Again this is a divisional game and the Titans have had the Jags number for the least couple years. The Jags struggled on offense without Fournette and Bortles threw for only 155 yards. Bortles needs to step up in divisional games like he did against New England and this team needs to move the ball better. Like I said before this is a weird divisional game and people shouldn’t put much stock into this game.
Bengals @ Panthers (-3): Bengals 21- Panthers 31
It’s a bird… It’s a plane… It’s Cam Newton!
The Bengals came back to earth after destroying the Ravens on Thursday night football. Andy Dalton threw 4 interceptions and they only had 66 yards on the ground without Joe Mixon. While Tyler Boyd played out of his mind, fans should be more worried about the health of A.J. Green who doesn’t look like he’ll play next week. The Bengals downfall was the 4 interceptions, you just can’t lose the turnover battle on the road and expect to win. Bengals need to win tough road games like this if they expect to make the playoffs and they’re at the Falcons next week.
Cam Newton did Cam Newton things, he threw for 2 touchdowns, rushed for 2 and now is the all time leader in career rushing touchdowns. Cam clearly misses Greg Olsen, when you look down the stat line Funchess is the only pass catcher you recognize. The defense was excellent getting 4 interceptions and 2 sacks, they held their own at home and were the superior team.
Broncos @ Ravens (-6): Broncos 14- Ravens 27
The Ravens are in it
The Broncos got two quick scores in the first quarter and then fell flat on their face. They had bad penalties, dropped big passes and their biggest rushing threat got ejected early on. The Broncos look poised for a great game and they were 2-0 looking to step up and get to 3-0. Today wasn’t their day, with Lindsay out Freeman couldn’t do anything and the offense just unraveled. Case Keenum was under 200 yards and didn’t get a single touchdown. Von Miller didn’t get a single sack and only got two tackles in the entire game, if the strength of the Broncos is their defense they need to step it up.
The Ravens played great, even when it looked out of hand they stayed composed stuck to their game plan of a balanced offense, they threw 40 times and rushed 28 times getting 354 total yards and Joe Flacco spread the ball around with 6 players getting multiple catches. Alex Collins and Buck Allen punched it in when they needed to and this team looked very composed. The defense after the initial 14 points was great, not allowing the Broncos to score in the last 52 minutes. With the Bengals losing, Browns winning for the first time in 2 years and Steelers being in disarray the Ravens could take the North.
Saints @ Falcons (-2): Saints 43- Falcons 37
A classic NFC South shootout
The Saints were able to throw all over the Falcons, with Drew Brees getting the record for career completions and throwing for 396 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Saints wouldn’t settle for a tie taking their time to get to the end zone and scoring with 2:58 minutes left in overtime. The Saints need to tighten up on defense after letting up multiple 35+ point games this season (the other one against the Bucs). Drew Brees also got 2 rushing touchdowns with the first having him spin for what seemed like forever.
The Falcons were great on offense and Calvin Ridley went off getting 7 reception for 146 yards and 3 touchdowns, but they fell short and their injuries on defense are staring to show. With Neal and Levitre out for the year and now Ricardo Allen is hurt, the injuries are pilling up and it’s not looking like it’s the Falcons year with them being last in the NFC South.
Chargers @ Rams (-7): Chargers 23- Rams 35
Battle Los Angeles (2011)
This game, not unlike the 2011 movie, was exciting, explosive with lots of action, but you always knew what the outcome was gonna be. While the Chargers were good on offense and it looked like they might come back, you always felt like the obvious choice was the right choice and it was. The fact is the Rams are probably the best team in the NFC ,maybe the NFL, and the Chargers just aren’t. Even though they were able to move the ball on offense, without Joey Boss the Rams were just too much on offense. The Chargers are still a good team even though they’re 1-2. They’ve gotten unlucky and probably faced the best 2 teams in their first 2 games.
The Rams are the best team in L.A., California, the NFC and maybe the entire league. Even though the Rams played two bad teams in their first two games they were able to get season highs in points (35) against a legitimate playoff team. Unfortunately for the Rams Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters both got hurt and their status in unknown for next week and the rest of the season with Peters getting carted off. The Rams probably are the best but they need to stay healthy.
Bears @ Cardinals (+6): Bears 16- Cardinals 14
Good news Bears and The Rosen one!
The Bears needed this win, they are now 2-1 and are leading ate AFC North, if they want to be competitive against the Vikings and Packers they need to win these easy games where they’re favored on the road. Trubisky struggled in the first half with 2 turnovers and the Bears had a huge lead (14-0), the Bears proved they have a great defense and they came in big getting 2 turnovers that led to field goals and one that sealed the game. The Bears are good and they need to keep their lead in the NFC North, and these kinds of games are gonna be crucial for that.
The Cardinals won’t win anything this season, even they knew that before the season so I don’t understand why they chose to put in Rosen with under 2 minutes left in the 4th quarter. If they were confident in Rosen they should’ve played him from the beginning of the game or wait till next week. I understand the Bradford struggled it’s just an odd choice for Rosen’s development. Rosen didn’t look bad but he is a rookie and the team around him isn’t great so people shouldn’t be tough on him.
Cowboys @ Seahawks (-1.5): Cowboys 13- Seahawks 24
The Clapper and the Seahawks
Jason Garrett (The Clapper) isn’t a good NFL coach, but he’s a great cheerleader. Seattle got up big early and they never looked back, while the Cowboys were able to get a late score it was too little, too late. Dak was picked off twice by Earl Thomas and while Zeke’s stat line looks good it’s only like that because of a few big runs that led to nothing. The Cowboys need a real head coach who can gameplay against one of the worst rosters in the league.
The Seahawks were good on the ground and are clearly committed to Chris Carson who had 32 carries and 102 yards along with 1 touchdown. Russell Wilson didn’t put up big stats, but he didn’t need too and he was only sacked twice this game. The Seahawks looked good, unfortunately for them the Cowboys aren’t that good and aren’t a good test for them. The Seahawks evaded 0-3 and won’t be bad but this roster just isn’t that good and it will limit them.
Patriots @ Lions (+7) : Patriots 10- Lions 26
The Lions. WAIT THE LIONS!?!
The Patriots were beat by the team sho lost huge to the Jets, so will the Pats lose to the Jets? No that’s dumb, the Pats start slow every year and its not any different now. The Lions led 13-3 at the half and even though this felt like a classic Pats comeback it never happened they just stalled drive after drive. This game felt close but it really wasn’t, the Lions answered almost immediately after the Pats scored in the third. The Pats couldn’t convert on their first 3 drives and while this game means nothing because the Pats are the Pats 1-2 is not what people were expecting from New England.
The Lions were impressive, they clearly game planned to hold onto the ball and keep it out of Tom’s hands. They just controlled time of possession and took field goals instead of going for it and it paid off. The Lions had their first 100 yard rusher for the first time in 5 years and the future looks bright for Kerryon Johnson. This game won’t mean a whole lot in the grand scheme of things, realistically Patricia had been with New England for 14 years and knew what they liked and didn’t liked and it showed tonight.