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NFL Week Six – The Saints Go Marching On

NFL Week Six – The Saints Go Marching On

Week six of the 100th NFL season is in the bag and with a few notable exceptions, it is looking like shaping up to be one of the most competitive in a while with a handful of standouts, a small dog pound and a whole load of teams who are within a win or two of each other.  Shame a great season is being overshadowed by refereeing controversies and a seemingly inept official review team who appear to be watching a different game to the rest of us when making some of their decisions.

Anyway, minor grip aside this is how the games panned out, together with a few observations.

New York Giants 14 @ New England 35

Thursday nights game ended up in a comfortable win to the Patriots, however, the Giants made a fist of it for the best part of three quarters. What is it with Brady and the Giants, he never seems comfortable when he plays them.

Carolina 37 @ Tampa Bay 26

Panthers fans enjoying the takeaways
Embed from Getty Images

The Panthers and the Buccs served up an entertaining international game at Tottenham Hotspur’s Stadium, with plenty of passing a smattering of running and seven – yes seven Buccs turnovers. Normally James Winston would be thrilled by his 400 yards passing, however throwing five interceptions will have taken the gloss off of it. Kyle Allen had a more sedate game but he is now 5-0 career-wise and still hasn’t thrown a pick this year. How did he go undrafted?

Seattle 32 @ Cleveland 28

The pre-season hype is fading fast in Cleveland and questions have to be asked about Baker Mayfield who seems unable to back up his swagger this year. His stats are mediocre, to say the least, 5 TDs and 11 interceptions, including another three here. The Browns are now 2-4 and although there is still a long way to go that 16 season playoff drought won’t end this year if they keep playing like this. Seattle is 5-1 and possibly, more importantly, are 3-0 on the road, which bodes well for them given they are not the best of travellers. Russell Wilson is playing like an MVP this year as he brought the Seahawks back from a 20-6 deficit.

Houston 31 @ Kansas City 24

Kansas City lost their second game in a row as Houston came back from an early 17-3 deficit to score the winning TD inside the last minute. The game was won and lost on the Lines with the Texans OL managing to protect DeShaun Watson, allowing zero sacks for a second consecutive game, while KC’s Defense couldn’t stop the run giving up 192 yards rushing. They will need to sort this quickly as expecting Maholmes to win shoot outs every week is not ideal.

Washington 17 @ Miami 16

With no wins between them this ws never going to be a classic, however, it had its moments and the Dolphins came within a failed 2 point conversion of snatching it, after trailing 17-0 going into the fourth quarter. Josh Rosen started the game for Miami, but after being sacked five times and throwing two picks he was mercifully replaced by Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Philadelphia 20 @ Minnesota 38

Kirk Cousins threw four TD passes in this one and the Vikings stamped their authority on it early leading 24 -10 at the half. They never looked troubled and at 4-2 they are well placed in the NFC North. Philadelphia has slumped to 3-3, however they still lead the NFC East.

New Orleans 13 @ Jacksonville 6

No Drew Brees looked like being bad news for the Saints, however with their defense and the competent if not spectacular play by back up Teddy Bridgewater this has not been an issue. They won their fourth consecutive one-score game, holding the Jags to only 226 yards of offense. The Jags have slid to 2-4 and their rookie sensation QB Gardner Minshew spent most of the night running for his life. New Orleans has been flying below the radar until now but their defense is for real.

Cincinnati 17 @ Baltimore 23

The Bengals have the worst record in the NFL at 0-6 and until they sort out their running game that elusive first win could be a long time coming. They had 33 yards rushing but otherwise played not too badly; even if they never actually looked like winning. Baltimore ran the ball for fun, lead by their elusive QB Lamar Jackson. He ended up with a quite incredible 152 yards on the ground and threw for 236 to round out a superb solo performance.

San Francisco 20 @ LA Rams 7

Watch out it looks like the 49ers are for real this year, well their defense is for sure. Not that it looked that way early in this one though as the Rams strolled down the field with the minimum of fuss to score on their opening drive. Thereafter though the San Fran defense took over and they only managed a further 5 first dowsn in the game. The Rams finished with a net 48 yards passing and Goff took four sacks. The 49ers move on to 5-0 and although offensively they looked more competent than special, a team can easily ride a stand out defense all the way to the Super Bowl. Do we think they will get there? Not yet but we wouldn’t wager any money against them either.

Atlanta 33 @ Arizona 34

What a great game for the neutral two offenses playing pretty much perfect games and close to the wire. Matt Ryan had a great night for the Falcons completing 30 of 36 passes for 356 yards and 4 TDs, and it should have been more but for Matt Bryant’s uncharacteristic missed extra point which would have sent the game into OT. Kyler Murray looked spectacular at times and he to had a near flawless night going 27-37 for 340 yards and 3 TDs. Now lest we forget neither of these sides has anything resembling a pass rush so it’s too early to call turn around on either, however, Kliff Kingsbury looks vindicated in taking Murray first overall, and Atlanta are only a couple of decent Defensive Ends away from competing. The good news here is that they should be picking in the top ten of the draft next year and there looks to be some good ones set to declare.

Tennessee 0 @ Denver 16

The Broncos defense turned up big style in this one registering seven sacks and three interceptions. After their 0-4 start, they have now had a pair of nice wins and suddenly they are very much alive in the inconsistency plagued AFC West.  Tennessee has slumped to 2-4 and are currently bottom of the AFC South. They benched QB Marcus Mariotta for Ryan Tannehill during the game – to no avail, however, it will be interesting to see who they start against the Chargers next week.

Dallas 22 @ New York Jets 24

Finally, the Jets have a win, and Sam Darnold looked quite good in their narrow win throwing for 338 yards and 2 TDs. Once again his decision making is in question though as he threw a red zone interception when a safety first running play and at worst a Field Goal would have given them a two TD lead. As it was they almost blew it and Dallas came within a two-point conversion of forcing OT. The Cowboys are now 3-3 after a 3-0 start!

Pittsburgh 24 @ LA Chargers 17

The Steelers kept their season alive thanks to a pretty inept first half by the Charger, who once again seem to have rediscovered their knack of shooting themselves in the foot. In their five first-half possessions, they turned the ball over twice (one for a score) punted twice an then hit the post with a field goal attempt. Pittsburgh took advantage of their generosity to march into a 24 point lead before LA’s fightback caused them a few anxious seconds when they had to punt it back to them inside the last minute.  The Steelers season has been marred by injuries and they had to start what was probably their 4th string QB in this one still rookie Delvin Hodges has played pretty well for an undrafted Free Agent.

22 Detroit @ 23 Green Bay

This was a close one and sadly one which will be most remembered for the standard of officiating. Both sides will feel aggrieved by some of the decisions with Detroit getting a TD that didn’t seem to cross the line, while the Packers benefited from some questionable “hands to the face calls”. In the end, it came down to a last-second field goal. The Packers had by far the best of the yardage but nearly blew it with three turnovers including one at the 2-yard line when it seemed easier to score than lose the ball. Whatever the Packers are now 5-1 despite their offensive frailties.

The following had a Bye Week: Buffalo Chicago Indianapolis & Oakland

A Few Takeaways:

Sam Darnold had 218 yards passing in the first half but after piling up a nice lead the offense was changed to run first in the second half. It nearly cost them, but the real takeaway is that maybe he can be their franchise QB after a shaky rookie year. 

New Orleans might have the best defense in the NFC. All talk this side of the ball will be on the 49ers, but this Saints one is a game-winner.

Jamies Winston had the most passing yards in the NFL in week six. Not surprising when you have 54 passing attempts!. Shame about the 5 picks. 

Will Kyle Allen an undrafted free agent oust Cam Newton? Well, he is 5-0 as a starter and Cam has been somewhat out of sorts since Super Bowl 50. They might decide to cash in while there are a few QB needy teams around ( Steelers?)

Lamar Jackson is one of the best running QBs since Michael Vick. This was his second 100-yard rushing game this year. 

Kyler Murry looks better with every passing week. Just imagine what he could do with a half-decent O-Line and a few weapons outside of the ageing Larry Fitzgerald. 

Wide Receiver Terry McLaurin is the one bright spot in Washington. They may have a dysfunctional owner and scant talent on the roster, however, this guy looks like a future pro-bowl candidate. He has 5 TDs already which is impressive in a team as bad as this. How did he slip into the third round of the draft? 

Speaking of offense you have to feel sorry for Aaron Rodgers Green Bay have spent a fortune on the defense, but have hung Rodgers out to dry. Outside of Davante Adams, there is not a safe pair of hands on the offense. Sad state of affairs when they had the chance to draft the likes of Noah Fant with one of their two 1st round picks. 

Anyway, we had another quiet week with our predictions going 8-6 in our predictions.

Featured image Editorial credit: dean bertoncelj /



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