After another week of monitoring COVID results, tracking injury reports, and watching the NFC East make a mockery of football, Week 7 in the NFL is nearly concluded.
This weekend in the NFL was jam-packed.
Jimmy Garoppolo came into New England and showed out against Bill Belichick and his former team as Cam Newton had a subpar game. Justin Herbert continues to impress in L.A. as he gets his first win as a starter. Also, the Saints and Buccaneers both get wins as they battle for the top spot in the NFC south.
Now, let’s take a look at some of the major takeaways from the weekend that was across the NFL.
This was one of the most exciting matchups of the day. Joe Burrow and Baker Mayfield battled all afternoon, accounting for nice touchdowns between the two. On the flip side, both defenses played about as flat as an Air Mattress with a stab wound. The offenses had these defensive coordinators in more entanglements than Jada Pinkett Smith after an August Alsina sleepover. Mayfield delivered the last blow that ended up being the game-winner on a beautiful pitch and catch to Donovan Peoples-Jones with less than 15 seconds left. It’s unclear if this is a turning point for Mayfield or if it is just another point in the “Baker Cycle.” Either way, the young QB’s job just got more difficult, with star wideout Odell Beckham Jr. announcing Monday that he tore his ACL and will miss the remainder of the season. Beckham injured his knee after chasing down Darius Phillips who’d just picked off woefully underthrown ball from Mayfield that was intended for Beckham. Beckham plowed into Phillips and teammate Andy Janovich, tearing that ligament.
“I’m probably going to beat myself up about that one for a long time,” Mayfield told reporters after the game for throwing the pass that led to the season-ending injury. “He’s a guy who fights for this team, and in doing that, he got hurt. ... it sucks.”
Burrow, on the other side of the field, seems like he is as good as advertised for the Bengals. Once he can get a defense that can support him and add a few more explosive pieces on offense the Bengals will be a team to watch.
It seems fitting that “America’s team” would be taking this many Ls in 2020 considering how this year has gone. Similar to America, the Cowboys’ problems are due to both a lack of execution and incompetence at the decision-making level. Watching this defense try to stop anybody is as excruciating as imagining Floyd Mayweather read one page of a Harry Potter book. The Dallas defense refuses to stop the run or the pass. They gave up nearly 400 total yards to a team that still doesn’t have a real name and is ranked dead last in the league in yards per game. It’s crazy to think that this Cowboys defense is more nauseating than watching an orange man with a disgraceful attempt at a spray tan fight to remain in the nation’s highest office. And while the defense deserves A LOT of slander, this offense only scored three points against Washington and accounted for only 142 yards the entire game. I haven’t seen a lack of production like this from an offense since my five-year-old nephew got the ball and ran to the wrong end zone in a pee-wee league game last Saturday. This performance comes after a few Cowboys players blamed coaches for their terrible start to the season but after watching this display against Washington there’s no way the players can deflect the blame on this one. This team is trash from top to bottom.
The Parakeets were up to their usual foolery on Sunday as they relinquished yet another fourth-quarter lead en route to defeat. This time the Mockingbirds lost to the Lions… yes those Lions, the ones from Detroit that haven’t been good since Generation Z was in diapers. The Woodpeckers had the opportunity to close out the game late, but running back Todd Gurley had a complete brain fart and scored a touchdown instead of bleeding out the clock to end the game (something he once did in the past). I can’t blame Gurley too much cause it seems like putting on that black and red Jersey comes with automatic amnesia about proper situational football. Losing a lead to the Lions might be the NFL equivalent of failing a PE class. This season Atlanta looks about as lost as Ted Cruz at an Essence festival. This is the third time this season the Chickadees have lost a game after having a 98 percent win probability. It’s the most by a single team in two decades and there have only been four other losses of this nature combined in the entire league this season.
Kyler Murray and the Cardinals got a much-needed win against Russell Wilson and the Seahawks on Sunday Night Football. It’s the first loss of the season for Seattle and puts Arizona in prime position to make a playoff push in the NFC. Murray was once again making plays all over the field, throwing to Larry Fitzgerald and DeAndre Hopkins at will, while scooting around the field like he has Flintstone feet. Wilson made a ton of plays in this game as well, but threw three costly picks, none of which were bigger than the one he threw in overtime that led to the Cardinal’s game-winning field goal. It can’t go without mentioning that on one of Wilson’s interceptions Seattle wide receiver DK Metcalf tracked down Cardinals safety Budda Baker faster than a landlord tracking a tenant who is late on rent. Metcalf chased Baker down faster than an old church lady catches the Holy Ghost. The NFC West is undoubtedly the best division in football right now, and could legitimately see all four teams reach the playoffs.
This was the most anticipated game of the week between two undefeated teams. Pittsburgh dominated Tennessee early and was able to jump out to a 20-point lead early in the third quarter. The Steelers defense was bottling up Titans running back Derrick Henry, the game’s leading rusher, for the majority of the game and it looked like it was going to be a rout in favor of Coach Mike Tomlin’s crew. However, the Titans fought back and scored 17 unanswered points behind the arm of quarterback Ryan Tannehill and forced key turnovers to give themselves a chance late in the game. It came down to a Stephen Gostkowski field goal as time expired to tie the game... and, as his season has gone, he missed it. The Steelers are now the last undefeated team in the league and it’s time to start giving them some more respect. Both of these teams can make a deep run in the AFC playoffs, but Pittsburgh’s versatility on offense gives them the upper hand. You add a defense that has a dominant front seven that can control the line of scrimmage, now you are looking at a legitimate Super Bowl contender.