New Orleans vs. Carolina
I really liked the Saints alternate uniforms on Thursday night. I recognize that I’m a bit young than the typical HH user but it reminded me of the White Ranger’s uniform from Power Rangers growing up (He was my favorite after he went from Green to White). Anyway, the Saints actually did a good job getting the Newton early and bringing pressure. The Saints just had trouble finishing drives all game long until it was too little too late. That Mark Ingram hit was scary. He likely suffered a concussion and seemingly blacked out for a little bit. I hope he will be ok (same sentiment for Kuechly). Despite outplaying Carolina offensively its overall consistent defense that the Saints are lacking and right now the Panthers are getting better at.
The Panther defense set up Cam Newton and co all night long with good field position off turnovers and 3 and outs. It's a little sad that the Saints will live out the last few years of Drew Brees’ paying career without a defense but that's the breaks sometimes.
Washington vs. Green Bay
Me watching this game:
What a dominant performance. All around excellence. We. Want. Dallas.
Arizona vs. Minnesota
The Cardinals are on a downward slide. If they struggle again next week against Atlanta the Redskins will catch this matchup at a near perfect time especially coming off a win against Dallas on Thanksgiving. The Redskins will have to remain vigilant against David Johnson / Larry Fitzgerald but Carson Palmer is on his last leg and the Cardinals defense is struggling due to injuries.
Buffalo vs. Cincinnati
We should have so beaten Cincy. This is Marvin Lewis last year as head coach. So many playoff appearances without a win only to sputter and in all likelihood not make the playoffs at all. With A.J. Green possibly out for the year and Giovanni Bernard out for the year the Bengals season is effectively done.
Shady McCoy is such an impressive running back. When he’s healthy he makes it look all too easy.
Chicago vs. New York (Giants)
Man Chicago really got my hopes up. Then my hopes came crashing down with the terrible offensive play from Cutler and Co. The Bears had several opportunities to put this one on ice or close to it but they blew it. One of the worst offenses was when Adrian Amos dropped an interception right in his hands. For christ sakes they make Rashad Jennings look good. Landon Collins is definitely the best safety in the division though and one of the best in the NFL.
Cleveland vs. Pittsburgh
Sometimes when I watch the Browns I think “Oh that was a nice pass from Kessler”, or “Oh, nice catch Pryor!” but it doesn’t lead anywhere. That team's inability to develop a consistent chemistry, score, or play well is just, well, kinda like nothing I’ve ever seen. It would be unfair to say they have nothing to build around. They have a good #1 receiver. They have decent prices in certain places they just don’t fit together. Needless to say, the Steelers ate lunch. Le’Veon Bell had one of his best games of his career with over 200 scrimmage yards.
Baltimore vs. Dallas
Another blown opportunity for outside help. The Ravens should have won this game. Joe Flacco admitted as much in his post-game press conference. Their defense dropped the ball and let that rookie Dak Prescott torch them through the air. I can not wait to play Dallas Thursday and put an end to this nonsense.
Tampa Bay vs. Kansas City
What a comeback by the Bucs! I’ve said it for a few weeks straight now but if you actually watch a Bucs game you will see just how far along Jameis Winston has come. Sure he still throws a pick or fumbles semi-frequently but he starting to be proficient in the ability to lead the team, to lead scoring drives, and to play consistently well.
This was a tough one for the Chiefs. I’m sure they think they should have never gotten down in the score like they did but their secondary oddly enough was picked on enough by Winston that the the Bucs were able to get some padding in the score via field scores before the dagger touchdown. The Bucs are currently in the midst of a division race.
Tennessee vs. Indianapolis
Tennessee got off to a horrid start this game. All the offensive momentum they had been rolling with before this game was stonewalled by the Colts defense. That sounded weird. The Titans defense simply did not create enough pressure on Andrew Luck. Luck promptly picked apart the Titans suspect secondary. The Titans defense did have a chance to win this game in the fourth quarter though but it was too little too late for the offense. It's a bad loss for the Titans if they won this game they could be tied for first place in the AFC South right now.
Jacksonville vs. Detroit
The Jags are just bad. Their defense which they have tried to shore up draft after draft is a disjointed mess. Don’t get me wrong we all know how good the Detroit offense can be but the Jags defense is lacking basic discipline and fundamentals on defense. It doesn't help that their offense can't get off to a hot start, is one dimensional, and inconsistent. A couple things I really appreciate about a couple Lions players: First, Matthew Stafford can side arm throw a football like no one's business. Second, Golden Tate is a really talent receiver. I feel he’s slightly underappreciated for his versatility in being able to play outside, inside, as well as his catching ability.
Los Angeles vs. Miami
Well, It was Jared Goff’s debut. I came away largely unimpressed and I don’t really think he’s any better than Case Keenum right now. In the offseason, I heard chatter about how Goff was the most pro-ready of all the quarterbacks coming out. I assume the Rams talent evaluators agreed which is why they traded up to get him. Well, the book on him is far from written but there are at least two rookie quarterbacks that are miles ahead of Goff in Prescott and Wentz.
I never had high hopes for the Rams especially in the year they uprooted themselves from St. Louis. I wonder what exactly was Jeff Fisher trying to do here by sitting Goff so long when the results between him and Keenum are comparable. I can’t even speak about the Rams defense. They still have good players in that unit, obviously, but there are where near as effective or prolific as there were a few years ago. A few years ago one could argue the Rams had a championship level defense but the offense suffered under Fisher and Bradford. That window seems gone. Fisher has been at the helm 5 years now? I wonder what his reasoning for the lack of success will be.
The Dolphins are in a division race in the AFC South. How weird is that? I don’t think for a second that they will compete with the Patriots for the division but I think if the Dolphins keep it up they have a real shot at the AFC wildcard. The team is playing much more balanced with improved QB play from Ryan Tannehill. It took until the fourth quarter this past game but Tannehill led a few impressive drives to secure the win for the Dolphins.
New England vs. San Francisco
Malcolm Mitchell has a mini coming out party in week 11. He was by far one of my favorite mid-round prospects in this years past draft. The guy can flat out catch the football. We’ll Tom Brady recognized that a few times on Sunday and Mitchell was two yards short of the century mark in receiving plus they hooked up for a touchdown. The Patriots were largely dominant this game as you would expect while the 49ers continue to struggle mightily on defense and can’t produce enough on offense. If I were in charge of the 49ers I would think long and hard about why I shouldn't spend nearly every one of my upcoming draft picks on defense.
Seattle vs. Philadelphia
Praises to Seattle for helping create space between the Redskins and the basement dwellers. Did you guys know I hate the Eagles?
Houston vs. Oakland
This was a great blow for blow game. Both quarterbacks played well but Derek Carr played a little bit better than Osweiler. If I was a Raiders fan I would be a bit concerned with the lack of run game in this one especially when the defense gave up over 100 yards on the ground to Lamar Miller. However, as long as Derek Carr is getting it done through the air I suspect Raiders fans will live with it.
I think the Texans were robbed a little on a 4th and inches call. It seemed clear to me that the back got it. The Texans were the victim of a bad spot at the wrong time of the game. I wouldn't go as far as to say they were robbed of a victory as the game was tied at that point but it no doubt had a big impact in the result.