Lots of great action last week in the NFL, here’s the highlights from the 3 games we looked at:
Washington vs. New York Giants: Great divisional matchup. RG3 showed up again on the road and nearly led the ‘Skins to the victory. If not for a 77 yard TD pass from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz, the Skins would’ve handed the G-Men another division loss. Instead, the Giants salsaed their way to another victory and look like the defending champs. The one problem in this game for Washington = turnovers. Four turnovers that in the end largely contributed to their loss. But with Alfred Morris getting 120 yards rushing & RG3 going 20-28 258yds 2TDs to just 1 INT (along with 9 carries for 89 yards), Washington has something to build on for their rematch with the Giants later in the year.
New York Jets vs. New England: The Pats pull out a victory in OT, but it wasn’t without a fight by the Jets. In a lot of ways, this games spoke more to the weaknesses that the Pats continue to have on defense, particularly in the secondary. Mark Sanchez ended up throwing for 328 yards and the Jets had two receivers nearly go for 100 yards a piece. The Pats blew a lead in the 4th quarter, similar to the game in Seattle. However, they managed to salvage this one by getting a Gostkowski FG at the end of regulation & one in OT to win it. They may have got the win, but New England isn’t happy with how they got it and will try and improve next week.
Detroit at Chicago: The Bears once again clamped down on D and came away with their 5th win of the season with a score of 13-7. The Bears D stifled Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson. Stafford only threw a TD late in the 4th quarter and Megatron was held to only 3 catches for 34 yards. The Bears connection of Cutler to Marshall came through as well for the Bears lone TD. With the win, the Bears sit atop the NFC North and have to be in the discussion for best team in the NFC.
MVP of the Week: Chris Johnson, RB Titans. He finally showed the CJ2K of old with 18 carries 195 yards & 2TDs (including 83 yard TD run) in the Titans victory over the Bills.
Key games in Week 8:
Atlanta at Philadelphia. The Falcons come in off the bye as the lone undefeated team. They’ve had a lot of ugly wins recently and have not put together their best game. However, they do have a powerful offense with Matt Ryan calling signals and their defense has made plays when they needed to. The Eagles are also coming off the bye. With a new defensive coordinator, they look to stop the high flying offense that the Falcons have. Michael Vick will try and get back on track after some horrible performances the past few games. The key will be getting the ball in LeSean McCoy’s hands more in order to give Vick some relief. There will be a first loss after this game is said and done. Either Atlanta will lose their first game of the season, or Andy Reid will have lost his first game as a coach of the Eagles coming off a bye. I’m thinking the latter.
New Orleans vs. Denver
Great QB matchup for the Sunday night game as the Saints play the Broncos. Peyton Manning has led the Broncos to a dramatic comeback in his last game and they sit 3-3 in the wide open AFC West. They are coming off the bye week. The Saints won a wild and crazy game against Tampa Bay that saw their record improve to 2-4. It is a must win game for either side. The Saints this year have shown they have the offense but they have no defense to speak of (30th in opponents passing yards, 31st in opponents rushing yards). That spells trouble for a team that is facing a QB the caliber of Manning. I don’t think it’ll be much of a contest. Broncos will roll.