Many things came into focus during week 14 of the NFL season, and as usual, even more things became out of focus. We learned, as usual, that on any given Sunday, anything can happen.
So let’s take a look at the biggest takeaways from Sunday’s games.
Herbert completely outplayed Tua in a huge Sunday night game. By using the eye test, you can tell Herbert is a far superior quarterback. Tua has played well at times but has been inconsistent, and his mechanics are a huge reason. The bright side is that the Dolphins should still make the playoffs but winning the division is out the window, and a deep playoff run is not something that looks doable as the Secondary is bad and the offense has trouble running the ball. The Chargers have an easy schedule and should be able to slip into the playoffs, and if they get healthy they could make a run.
Nick Chubb and the vaunted Browns run game was shut down on Sunday in a 23-10 loss to the Bengals. Reader is almost unblockable and covers the field from side to side better than any nose tackle in the NFL. The Bengals shut down the Chiefs’ run game last week, and the week before Reader dominated Derrick Henry. Joe Burrow and the offense get most of the love, but Sunday’s win was because of a defense led by D.J.Reader. Check out the very best football betting strategies.
In his first start, Brock Purdy outplayed Tom Brady; now it must be said that Purdy is rolling with a much better team, but still, Purdy was poised in the pocket and threw darts all day long. However, this near-perfect performance had a dark cloud, as Deebo Samuel went out with what looks to be a serious injury. Even with that injury, though, the 49ers’ defense makes this team a serious Super Bowl contender and if Purdy can continue to play like this, who knows what the rest of the season will have in store for the 49ers?
The Panthers rushed for well over 200 yards and got a huge road win in Seattle, possibly putting them in place to win the NFC South. Wilks has brought a hard-nosed attitude to this team, and it’s a shame that he has never really been given a chance as a head coach. He was set up to fail in Arizona and was fired after just one year. Hopefully, the Panthers will do the right thing and give him the job as he earns it.
It’s one thing to get dominated by the Bengals’ offense is an entirely different thing when it’s the Denver Broncos’ offense. The Chiefs sprinted to a 27-0 lead and then slowly watched as the broncos mounted a comeback. The Chiefs held onto the win, but if they struggle to stop the Broncos, what does that say in a playoff setting against teams like the Bills, Bengals, and even the Chargers and the Dolphins? The Bengals and Bills have already beaten them, and they need to secure a home-field advantage to have a real shot.
The Eagles offense is effortless. MVP Front runner Jalen Hurts shredded the Giants in the first half with all day in the pocket. As Philly took a huge lead, Hurts dropped deep touchdown passes of 33 yards and 41 yards. They then followed that up with a 12-play scoring drive of 91 yards. It felt like the game was over in the first half as the Big Blue was throwing everything at Hurts, but Hurts had the answers to everything the Giants defense tried. When New York threatened to make it a game in the second half, the Eagles offense said, “Fine. We’ll just run our All-World quarterback,” and then Hurts gashed for a rush score to make the score 20- plus points, basically ending the game.
The Texans led almost the entire game against the Cowboys, but as bad teams so often do, they imploded at the end of the game. Lovie Smith is a bad coach; Sunday was a perfect example of that. The Texans had the game gift-wrapped when Dak Prescott threw an interception inside his ten. From there, the stupidity of Lovie Smith took over. His play calling was head-scratching at best, and then he topped it all by going for it on fourth down instead of kicking the field goal to go up by six points. I understand why he did it, but the playcalling and execution fell way short. From there, the Cowboys drove the field length to win the game. I know people will rip the Cowboys for barely escaping against a bad team, but they did escape. Cowboys teams of the last decade would have found a way to lose that game.
J.K. Dobbins returned and ran 120 yards on 15 attempts, a remarkable average of eight yards per carry. Gus Edwards nearly doubled his 2.9 yards per carry average over the past two weeks, gaining 66 yards on 13 attempts. Tyler Huntley was forced to leave due to a head injury, and Edwards took his 2.9 yards-per-carry average of the last two weeks and nearly doubled it. Edwards won the game by running 13 yards between the first and third downs to get the additional downs needed to finish the clock. Now the Health of Huntley becomes the big issue, Anthony brown is the third-string quarterback for the Ravens, and he may be forced into starting next week. On the bright side, the Ravens have no real downfield weapons to through to, so they will, for the most part, just be handing the ball off. Check out the top football odds.
The first half was a punt fest until the teams showed some semblance of offense in the second half of the game. The Jets Mike White showed his toughness playing hurt, and on the Bills’ side, the offense is still struggling. The Bills have an AFC East showdown against Miami on Saturday night, and I expect Allen to have a huge game against a poor Dolphins secondary.
After seven games, it looked like Lions Head Coach was bearing being fired; fast forward six weeks, and now the Lion’s defense is good, the offense is clicking behind a solid running game and a born-again Jared Goff, and the Lions have won five of their last six. They should not have lost that one loss on Thanksgiving against the Buffalo Bills. Many people rip Dan Campbell’s message and the way he coaches as the College way, but the entire city of Detroit is buying in right now, and the schedule for the rest of the season makes a Lions playoff berth a very real possibility.
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