We'll be putting all our GIFs for the day here, from Danny Amendola injuring a hapless fellow to Knowshon Moreno hurdling Ed Reed. We'll update the post as the later games conclude, so stay tuned.
Minnesota 36, St. Louis 22: Danny Amendola, as you can see above, is a heartless bastard. After scoring a touchdown early in the fourth quarter he spiked the football directly into an usher's face. Look at that poor guy! He's equal parts hurt and confused. Whe...where are my glasses? Are these my hands? I can't feel my face. I cannot feel my face.
But, let's get down to business—good lord, Adrian Peterson. He had 212 yards on 24 carries. 82 yards came on one rush and ended in a touchdown. Here, just watch:
Christian Ponder also performed some physically...incomprehensible feats. He managed to escape a sack and run a good portion of these ten yards sideways for a touchdown.
Atlanta 34, New York Giants 0: Hoo boy. According to Fox, the Giants went 256 games without being shutout. Welp, so much for that. Eli Had a raw game: 161 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. Matt Ryan had three touchdowns—two to Julio Jones—and no interceptions. Mercifully, the game was at least over fairly quickly.
Eli, as these things tend to go, also provided much in the way of GIFable moments. There was this bouncing interception:
And this, beautiful "sounds about right" edition of the Manningface.
Miami 24, Jacksonville 3: Really starting to run out of ways to describe the Jaguars. Chad Henne was out-dueled by his replacement, Ryan Tannehill. And the Dolphins didn't even need him, all they needed was Dan Carpenter. He had three field goals on the day and his first one was 53 yards. But enough of the good Dolphins, let's get back to the terrible Dolphins. Like this botched fake field goal in the third quarter. On fourth and four, Brandon Fields got the snap and tried to find Anthony Fasano right at the first down marker/pylon. Brandon Fields, however, is not a quarterback.
Green Bay 21, Chicago 13: It's kind of hard to believe that the Bears started the first half of the season with a 7-1 record. Almost as hard to believe is that the Packers started off 2-3. Yet here we are with the Packers winning the NFC North on the strength of three touchdowns from Aaron Rodgers to James Jones. Chicago is now 8-6 and looking in on the playoff picture from the bitter, salty cold.
Here, for your viewing pleasure is a typical play in the NFL's oldest rivalry. It is breathtaking.
Washington 38, Cleveland 21: The Redskins sat Robert Griffin III because the Shanahans likely thought to themselves "Yeeeeaaah, we can probably beat the Browns without him." So smart. Kirk Cousins threw for 329 yards and two touchdowns. Washington now has the same 8-6 record as the Giants but a 3-1 record to the Giants' 2-3 in the division.
Back to the decision to sit Griffin, though, here's a hit he did not sustain:
Denver 34, Baltimore 17: The Broncos had their way with the Ravens and there is no better description than Knowshon Moreno hurdling an almost completely upright and stationary Ed Reed.
Things would not improve. Joe Flacco was intercepted once, but it was a big one—returned 98 yards for a touchdown as the Ravens were driving right before the end of the first half. Rather than making it a 10-7 game, the Ravens went into the half down 17-0.
Houston 29, Indianapolis 17: The Colts were also undone by a big turnover in the red zone. With the score still close at 10-0 early in the second quarter, Mewelde Moore fumbled on the one yard line and Houston recovered.
Later in the quarter the Colts had a punt blocked that the Texans took in for a touchdown. The Colts did cut the lead to 20-10 going into the half thanks to this 61-yard hookup between Andew Luck and T.Y. Hilton, but could not overcome the turnovers and sloppy play.
New Orleans 41, Tampa Bay 0: Another blowout/shutout. Josh Freeman had four interceptions and zero touchdowns to Drew Brees's four touchdowns and zero interceptions. One of Freeman's interceptions, inside the 10 minute mark of the second quarter, was returned to midfield and ended in a Drew Brees pass to Darren Sproles for a touchdown to make it 17-0.
And here's a Jonathan Casillas blowing up Roscoe Parrish on a second quarter punt return.
Carolina 31, San Diego 7: The Chargers never had a chance. Cam Newton (2 TDs) and D'Angelo Williams (93 yards rushing, 51 receiving) both had good days, but you can't even really call them good "days," because the game was 21-0 after the first quarter. This was a turning point: on second and 10 at the San Diego 45, Cam Newton very nearly got picked off on a well-tipped pass—and instead the broken play got run into the endzone by DeAngelo Williams. When that type of stuff is happening, you're going to need to muster more than 164 yards of offense, or you're toast. You may be toast anyway.
Oakland 15, Kansas City 0: I can't. Sorry. I don't know...I don't know what to say about this game. I'm afraid to look at the box score—OK, hang on. I'm going in. I...yeah. It's all Sebastian Janikowski field goals. He hit a couple long ones. Oh God, the Chiefs had 119 yards of offense. 10 yards on the ground. I'm closing the tab. This happened:
Seattle 50, Buffalo 17: Not a bad couple of weeks for the Seahawks, who faced two subpar opponents in a row, the Cardinals and the Bills, and beat them 108-17, which is what you're supposed to do. This week's version of the Seahawks offensive variety hour didn't devolve into carnage right away—the Bills kept pace through the first quarter, at least—but then it did, aided in part by this flea flicker from Marshawn Lynch to Russell Wilson that ended up in Golden Tate's hands 44 yards downfield:
The Bills fared a little better than the Cardinals had last week for a few reasons, all of them on offense, one of them being Stevie Johnson (8 receptions, 115 yards, 1 TD), who continues to do ridiculous things, in spite of it all:
But, in the end, this was still the Bills, and Ryan Fitzpatrick would still needed to meet his weekly quota of one forehead-slapping interception per game. This, by Earl Thomas, did nicely. You'd think the Bills offense would be little better at tackling by now:
And finally, the pièce de résistance that more than sums up the game—the season, really—if you didn't have time to watch: Pete Carroll yukking it up while Chan Gailey glowers impotently.
Arizona 38, Detroit 10: So if the Seahawks beat the Cardinals by 58, and the Cardinals beat the Lions by 28, that means the Seahawks would beat the Lions by what, eleventy thousand?! Hahaha—oh, what? Nothing makes sense. This, a blowout between two crappy teams that produced no impressive individual statistics, isn't something anyone could get very excited about. Unless...
HELL YEAH! Now we're juiced.
Dallas 27, Pittsburgh 24: Like a cool competitive breeze in a dry blowout desert, the only good game of the afternoon delivered. Thanks in part to strong performances—and notably, in the former's case, not fucking the whole thing up—by Tony Romo and DeMarco Murray, the Cowboys managed to score last in a game that had been back-and-forth throughout. First, however, Big Ben, going untackled for much of the second quarter on this play, starting a ship in a bottle and not finishing it—because he was bored, not because he ran out of time—and throwing a 30-yard touchdown to Heath Miller:
The Steelers couldn't execute at the end of regulation, and at the beginning of overtime, Ben Rothlisberger threw an interception that gave the Cowboys good enough field position to win it with a short kick. That, unfortunately, made Jerry Jones do this:
Anyone else get the chills? The Cowboys, Redskins and Giants are now tied at 8-6 atop the NFC East.