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NFL Monday Wrap Up & Observations

Thoughts go out to Las Vegas after the horrific shooting. 50+ killed, 500+ injured in yet another record-breaking mass shooting in the USA. Vegas is a magical place, somewhere I’ve been many times and plan to go there many more times in the future. Trying to reconcile what goes on in the mind of somebody willing to commit that type of act will forever escape me. But alas, we stand here today on the heels of another record-breaking loss of life with automatic firearms at the centre of it all, and think to ourselves “How long until the next *record-breaker*?”

I wish I were complaining about the value of QB contracts…at least those *record breaking* numbers aren’t body counts. 

Love > Hate


 

The Rams are leading the NFC West…The Bills are leading the AFC East…The Patriots are 1-2 at home, and if not for a miraculous catch by Brandin Cooks in week 3, would be 0-3 at Foxborough. The Bengals are finally on the board, but still dogsh*t…Jay Cutler went Full Cutler in London. Deshaun Watson is the answer in Houston, and it begs the question why Tom Savage even started in the first place…oh, and Dalvin f**king Cook blew out his knee, effectively ending my fantasy season and continuing the lifelong torture sentence one is subjected to when they become a Vikings fan.

 

Just a few of the highlights thus far from a young NFL season.

 

As we gear up for Redskins-Chiefs tonight, here are a few odds-and-ends from the first four weeks of NFL regular-season action:

 

The GOOD

  • The Rams are the real deal. Road win in Dallas highlighted the evolution of Jared Goff and resurgence of TGII under Head Coach Sean McVay. Sets up a pivotal game next week against the enigmatic Seahawks.
  • Leg-a-tron Greg Zuerlein – 7/7 FG and 2/2 XP
  • Cam Newton’s TD celebration
  • The Bills sit atop the AFC East after consecutive wins over the Broncos and Falcons, the latter of the road variety. The defence is scary good and the offence continues to produce at a level that’s more than reasonable given the defensive dominance. Will still finish below the Patriots — Sorry Bills fans.
  • Enter Mitchell Trubisky in Chicago — as painful as it may be, now’s the time to get the kid involved. Trubisky was named the starting QB for next week’s Monday nighter against Minnesota.
  • Tony Romo’s booth play – hands down the best colour guy out there.
  • Deshaun Watson is the real deal. Has Houston looking like the class of the AFC South, especially when you consider the potential injury to Mariota in Tennessee. Oh, and he did THIS!
  • Alvin Kamara is head and shoulders the #1 option in New Orleans…Versatile back in a Brees-Payton offence — LOOK OUT!
  •  Stefon Diggs continues to look like an emerging elite talent at WR. Displays excellent hands and route running capabilities. Him and Thielen amongst the best WR duos in the league and have had their starting signal caller only once.

The BAD

  • Condolences to everyone who crashed out of their survivor pools after picking the Falcons or Patriots. Those who picked Dallas — Rams are for real. I wouldn’t have touched that game.
  • That 49ers-Cardinals game.
  • If only the Bengals could play the Browns 16 times — Cleveland’s nightmare continues and Cincinnati players and coaches buy themselves another week.
  • Derek Carr diagnosed with a fracture in his back putting a large question mark on the Raider’s prospects. EJ Manual is a great QB…to play defence against.
  • Kyle Rudolph’s offensive role – no excuse to not feature the big TE more prominently. He didn’t have a catch until the 4th quarter if my memory serves me correctly.
  • The Chargers offensive struggles — with weapons aplenty, the inability to move the ball is puzzling.
  • The Dallas defence. Losing to the Rams at home when Dak, Zeke, and Bryant all have quality games has to raise some concerns inside Jerry’s World.
  • Blake Bortles continued struggles behind centre — 15 / 35 for 140, a TD and INT. Just not gettin’ it done.

The DOWNRIGHT TERRIBLE

  • Can Mike Zimmer be forced to swim through any more $hit? So far in his Vikings tenure, he’s had to deal with massive injuries to Adrian Peterson and Teddy Bridgewater — and now Dalvin Cook is added to that list which also includes Sam Bradford, who’s missed 3 games thus far with a knee injury shrouded in mystery
  • Jay Cutler
  • The over-coverage of the National Anthem
  • Everything about the New York Giants offence
  • The Ravens passing offence — Flacco worth every penny eh? Do they ever miss Ray Rice’s versatility. Elevator etiquette aside, he gave so much to that offence.
  • The Adrian Peterson experiment in New Orleans
  •  The Patriots defence — never expected to be elite, a proficient offence can’t even mask the shortcomings of this inept unit thus far.
  • Mike Glennon’s Chicago tenure — are there jersey’s burning in the streets of Chicago? Does anybody even own a Glennon jersey?
  • The LA Chargers home attendance – announced at just over 25,000, you couldn’t help but notice most of those were rooting for the visiting Eagles. Chargers not in a good spot, on many levels.
  • That Sports Illustrated cover
  • Alabama rallies
  • Sergio Dipp’s Monday Night debut

 

Let’s stop there, because I theoretically could go on forever.

Now, what does it all mean? Allow me to make some rather bold predictions for the remainder of the season:

  • Teddy Bridgewater starts for the Vikings by week 10. Bradford’s knee is concerning, regardless if he returns this week. Keenum is a solid back-up but that’s about it. Performances like he had against the Bucs are outliers in a data set dominated by numbers more aligned with his performances in weeks 2 & 4.
  • The Bills will claim a wild-card spot…ending the longest playoff drought in professional sports (17 years).
  • Kareem Hunt will run away with OROY honours. He’s Jamaal Charles 2.0. If not him, expect Deshaun Watson to take it home.
  • Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen finish the year as the top WR duo in terms of yards. Currently sit at #1 with 391 & 358 yards respectively.
  • Patrick Mahomes spends the entire season holding a clipboard as Alex Smith, in the eyes of some, challenges for MVP votes — He won’t win, but these are supposed to be BOLD predictions.
  • Aaron Donald signs the largest deal for a defensive player in history before the end of the season.
  • Adrian Peterson will not finish the year as a member of the Saints *Not so bold*
  • OJ Simpson finds NFL work before Colin Kaepernick. Ravens and others should really be looking at Kaepernick at this point. New York? Miami?
  • The Cowboys will miss the playoffs and finish 8-8. Giants miss as well, although the latter isn’t exactly in the realm of boldness
  • The NFC West will come down to Dec. 17th Rams @ Seahawks. That division’s tide is turning…
  • The Browns win one game…that’s it.
  • The Patriots return to the Super Bowl *DUH*
  • Jay Cutler gets released before the end of the year — I JUST WANT THIS TO BE TRUE!

And finally, a Monday night prediction…

Washington   24

Kansas City    27

Cousins – 285 yds 2 TDs, 2 INTs

Smith – 310 yds, 3 TDs, 1 INT

Hunt – 160 total yards, 2 TDs

Thompson – 88 yds, 1 TD

Ty. Hill – 120 yds

Kelce – 70 yds, 1 TD

Pryor – 5 receptions, 110 yds, 1 TD

And one (1) concussion and/or one (1) ACL tear 😦

 

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