Baltimore Ravens vs. Tennessee Titans
My biggest fear was for the condition of Baltimore's players, but while they outnumbered their opponents in terms of injuries (safety Marcus Williams, DT Brent Urban and cornerback Kevon Seymour), the biggest casualty of Tottenham's artificial turf took Tennessee's toll. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill left the field early due to an ankle injury.
Understudy Malik Willis, who replaced Tannehill, visually left a very heavy impression. No, he did without turnovers and even completed 4 of 5 passes for 74 yards. The problem was that he was very slow to scan the field, slow to make decisions and constantly got under the sack - 4 times for a loss of 30 yards. "Ravens" as usual tried to surrender an already won game, but Willis didn't have the fervor to take advantage of it.
It's fortunate that the Titans have a week off, but it's not certain that Tannehill will recover in time. If he does, we'll see either Willis or rookie Will Levis against Atlanta.
Washington Commanders vs. Atlanta Falcons
Washington quarterback Sam Howell had another quality game. Yes, his involvement in the game was limited (the Commanders lost a lot of time of possession), and he once again picked up 5 sacks, but no interceptions and 3 passing touchdowns.
But Desmond Ridder let Atlanta's head coach down.
Unhappy Arthur Smith could only throw his arms when his quarterback's next drive ended with an interception (he threw 3 of them). This is the second game of the season where Ridder has naturally buried the team. There was exactly one game where his play could be evaluated with a plus sign.
Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings
Another loss among the starting quarterbacks is Justin Fields. He dislocated his thumb on his throwing hand and is unlikely to play in the next round. Fields had a chance to fulfill the prophecy - before the injury, he gained 58 yards on 6 accurate passes, while Cousins gained 181 yards on 21 accurate passes.
Instead of Fields, Tyson Bagent, an undrafted agent and son of a famous arm-wrestler, took the field. There's nothing wrong with Bagent's throwing power. In general, he is a curious athlete, who did not find a place in the NFL draft primarily because of the big difference in the level of competition - the quarterback played in the second division of the NCAA. However, scouts have written that he may well be taken even in the 5th round, and he recently passed seasoned veteran Nathan Peterman in Chicago's point guard pecking order. I'd take another look at Bagent.
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Seattle Seahawks
That's not to say Seattle defenders completely shut down Chase, after all, he did catch the ball 6 times for 80 yards. But at the same time, 31 yards were gained per reception, just 6 receptions for 13 rushes (Tyler Boyd, for example, caught 7 of 7), with no touchdowns. Joe Burrow threw the only interception of the game against Chase. A contradictory performance, all in all.
San Francisco 49ers vs. Cleveland Browns
Jim Schwartz is still a major contender for assistant of the year honors. Cleveland's defense had plenty of strong players before, but thanks to the work of the coordinator who came to the team last offseason, the entire unit is now working perfectly.
The sensational loss to San Francisco 49ers has many fathers - injuries to key offensive players, difficult weather conditions, controversial officiating decisions, Jake Moody's crooked leg - but it's Schwartz who will be paying the alimony.
"The Browns go 3-2 after changing three quarterbacks over the course of the season and losing Nick Chubb to injury. Respectable.
New England Patriots vs. Las Vegas Raiders
There's a lot of jokes to be made. And about the fact that both specialists fired blanks and then had to chisel each other's skulls with the handles, and about the fact that if Mac Jones and Jimmy Garoppolo had fired, both seconds would have been killed....
"New England and Las Vegas are like two pieces of a whole right now. When the experts (and the players behind them) were leaving Foxboro for a new place, there was a lot of talk about recreating the Patriot's Way success at other teams. In fact, they simply confused Patriot's Way for the highway.
And if it wasn't enough that former coordinator Josh McDaniels and former quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo were going up against the Patriots, they were forced to add another former quarterback, Brian Hoyer.
In short, it turned out the way we thought it would - meeting with exes is just wasted time.
Arizona Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Rams
Despite the hysteria on fantasy wavers, Dimercado only received TWO tabs. The primary beneficiary of James Conner's injury was Keaontay Ingram, who gained 40 yards on 10 carry attempts. Quarterback Joshua Dobbs overwhelmed him as well with 47 for 7. Arizona's entire offense hauled in the ball for 28 fewer yards than one Kyren Williams of the Rams.
New York Jets vs. Philadelphia Eagles
What a king I would be right now if I had given in to my initial impulse and bet on the Jets upside. But it's not just coaches that fate punishes for cowardice, but prognosticators too.
If you want to see a matchup that is won purely by defense (with a pinch of luck), here you go. "The Jets haven't gained 200 yards passing (if you count with sacks, 155 at all) and 100 yards rushing. Turnovers are key, 4 losses for the Eagles, 0 for the Jets.
After a performance like that, it really seems like the Jets could have gone 5-1 with Rodgers. And yes, this is the Jets' first win over the Eagles in the history of their rivalry (50 years).
Indianapolis Colts vs. Detroit Lions
Remember when we discussed the trajectory of Carson Wentz's career? Second pick in the draft, a member of the MVP season discussion in 2017, just a good albeit injury-riddled quarterback for a couple years after that, terrible regression in 2020 and on downhill from there (though Indianapolis' season was still okay).
How about Goff? He's had an even cooler swing. He finished his debut season in the NFL labeled as a bast, a "failed pick." After McVay came in, he rebounded, one of the best in the NFL. After the Super Bowl loss, gradual degradation. "The guy is pulling back a championship team." Trade for Stafford to Detroit, where he was predicted a temporary spot in the starting lineup - just to play for a year and then pass the baton to a highly drafted quarterback.
Instead, Goff decided to return to the highest level without any McVay under his belt. Right now, the Lions go 5-1, and Goff is in the top-5 in passing yards, touchdowns and completion percentage, and in the top-3 in passer rating.
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Dallas Cowboys
We saw a sample of the same Chargers from last year - pass offense works, takeaways don't (Ekeler again scored more on receptions than takeaways), all ending in an epic turnover. "The Cowboys rehabilitated themselves for last week's loss. "The Bateaters remain unranked.