16 Nov NFL Week 10 Recap with Matt Lownes
What an odd Sunday in Week 10! The Masters finished during the early slate of NFL games, there were more 4:00 pm E.T. games than 1:00 pm games, and to be honest it did not bother me one bit. Time to dig into a wonky Week 10 that included a miracle in Arizona.
The Arizona Cardinals hosted the Buffalo Bills in a wild back and forth affair. The Cardinals struggled early but managed to turn things around and take a lead late in the 4th quarter. Josh Allen, who had two interceptions, saved the day for the Bills with an incredible touchdown pass to Stephon Diggs with 37 seconds left.
Diggs is arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL in 2020, but the comeback win for Buffalo was short-lived. Kyler Murray and the Cardinals offense, with the help of a productive catch and run by Larry Fitzgerald, were able to get near the middle of the field with seven seconds left on the clock. Kyler Murray took the snap, ran outside the pocket avoiding one defender and through up a prayer.
Cardinals star WR DeAndre Hopkins caught the ball over three defenders to win the game. An incredible play by an incredible duo down in Arizona.
The Bills and Cardinals traded for the aforementioned star wideouts both, of whom scored go-ahead/game winning touchdowns in the final minute of yesterday’s thrilling game. What the lesson learned from this? When you have a young quarterback but do not have the weapons for him, go out and trade for a stud receiver.
It has clearly worked in both Buffalo and Arizona this season as I believe both teams will make the playoffs and maybe even make a run for the Super Bowl.
NFC Least heats up
The riveting NFC Least is one of the worst divisions I have ever seen in modern football. The Giants were able to revenge their previous loss to the Eagles, winning 27-17 behind a strong defensive performance from their D-line. Alex Smith got his first start for the Washington Football Team since he broke his leg years ago, and absolutely dominated in the second half. The Lions were up 24-3, and Alex Smith and the Washington Football Team tied it up at 27-27 late in the 4th quarter.
If not for a long game-winning field goal from Matt Prater, the Washington Football Team may have made things even more interesting in the NFC Least. I personally think the Giants will win the NFC Least, as they have a much easier remaining schedule than the Eagles.
W’s for Packers/Steelers/Bucs
The Green Bay Packers looked awful for a majority of their 24-20 win over the second worst team in football, the Jacksonville Jaguars. I would not focus too much on their poor performance though, as they did get the win. The Steelers dominated first overall pick Joe Burrow and the Bengals, leading to a 9-0 start.
The Bucs returned to winning form, beating the Panthers 46-23 after being down 17-10 in the second quarter. Like I said last week, the Bucs have so many weapons that it is up to their offensive line to give Tom Brady enough time to find those players down the field.
Fins & Browns push for playoffs
The Miami Dolphins and the Cleveland Browns are 6-3. Yes, the Dolphins and the Browns are projected to make the playoffs. What a time to be alive. The Dolphins continued their hot streak beating the Chargers 29-21 in a very mediocre game, while the Browns beat the Texans 10-7 in a windy, rainy, defense-first game. The weather was so poor in Cleveland that their was a 37 minute lightning delay to start the game.
The Dolphins and Browns find themselves in a very odd position, as they will probably make the playoffs but neither are good enough to actually go on a run or win the Super Bowl. I have to admit, Brian Flores is a top head coach and must be treated as one. That is a hill I am willing to die on as Flores has made a lot out of very little with this Miami Dolphins team.
Brees hurt, Goff and Newton thrive under pressure
Saints quarterback Drew Brees suffered a rib injury and was not able to finish the game against the 49ers yesterday. I have to imagine it was due to precaution and Brees will be available next week, but if Jameis Winston is the starting quarterback for the Saints, you can pretty much write them off for winning a Super Bowl.
Brees must be healthy for the Saints to succeed, although they were able to win regardless of who was throwing the ball yesterday.
Jared Goff rebounded from his poor Week 9 poor performance, playing well in a Week 10 win versus the Seattle Seahawks. While Goff did not throw a touchdown, he also did not throw an interception and went 27-37 for 302 yards. Goff did just enough to put his offense in a successful position consistently against the Seahawks.
The Rams defense had two interceptions, all but ending Russell Wilson’s MVP chances, and was creating havoc in the backfield all game. The Rams are pretty good, but I need to see more from Goff over the next few weeks.
Cam Newton absolutely took last week’s second half comeback victory as a major confidence boost, because he came into Sunday Night Football with a whole different level of confidence. Cam’s passing, running, and decision-making were much better. The Patriots ran away with this one in the second half in a very rainy and windy game.
This game was uneventful, save for a wide receiver touchdown pass from Jakobi Myers to running back Rex Burkhead. The Baltimore Ravens have been exposed, and if they do not change things up offensively they have zero chance of doing anything significant in the playoffs.
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2021 NFL Draft
The New York Jets did not play Week 10, but almost “won” via the Jaguars. If rookie Jake Luton played a tad better, the Jaguars could have gotten their second win.
This week I would like to focus on Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields. Fields will most likely be the second QB taken off the board in the 2021 NFL Draft, and for good reason. He can hit every throw, has good decision-making tendencies, can run, throw on the run, and is a good leader.
The question is not when will Justin Fields be drafted, it is to whom? The Jacksonville Jaguars could draft him, or decide on a different quarterback. While everyone is talking about Trevor Lawrence, many in Ohio want to know where does Justin Fields fit? If I had to throw one team out there that makes a ton of sense to me: The Atlanta Falcons.
Go get Fields and have him sit for a year or two under Matt Ryan, then either trade or release Matt Ryan and you potentially have your next franchise signal caller. Many teams will want Fields, it is just a crapshoot on who will end up getting him.
Matt’s Life Advice
This week as Thanksgiving gets closer, reach out to an old friend you have not talked to in 2020. While you may be too busy during Thanksgiving, this next week is a great opportunity to talk to those you have not talked to in a while. Be kind. Have a great week everyone!