September 29, 2014 in NFL Observations
1. Game of the weekend pitted the Philadelphia Eagles heading to San Francisco to take on the Niners.
The Niners could not afford to fall to 1-3 and trail Arizona and Seattle by anymore games. But for most of the first half the Eagles controlled the Niners on the scoreboard. Crazy thing is that the Eagles, known for the Chip Kelly offense scored all their points by defense and special teams to take an early lead.
The 49ers were able to move the ball as expected against the Eagles defense and finally got scoring. One week after getting little running game, Frank Gore came up huge and led the 49ers back to a huge win. Maybe this is the win that gets San Fran on track and quiets the talk about their coach going to Michigan, Ray McDonald, who is injured or already suspended. The Eagles have some serious issues on the offensive line but they should slowly be fixed starting with Lane Johnson's return. I still think both teams see the playoffs.
2. Best performance of the weekend has to go to the Dallas Cowboys who dominated the Saints Sunday night.
Dallas continued to own the line of scrimmage when they have the ball and ran the ball effectively all night. Dallas kept Drew Brees on the sidelines most of night unlike a year ago. I questioned The Jones' using three recent top picks all on the offensive line, but it is working so far even though they needed defensive help. The defense has been better, but can it keep it up? It seems like we ask that each week.
The Saints now sit at a surprising 1-3 record, but even though they have played poorly the NFC South looks like 9 wins can win it. The Panthers started strong but now are coming off two straight blowouts. The Falcons are up and down by the week and don't look like more than an 8-8 squad. We all thought the Bucs were dead in the water but then they go up to Pittsburgh and pull out a late win? Who knows who the favorite is now?
3. I guess I can give myself the idiot award because I was the only one in the country who thought the Raiders would show improvement this season.
So far it’s another embarrassing start for Raider Nation as they fell to 0-4. And yesterday they got trounced by the so/so Miami Dolphins. Was Dennis Allen fired right after the game? I am still not sure but it is expected he will get tossed out soon. I thought with some solid veteran pickups that they made, the Raiders could at least be competitive with the rest of the league. I guess I was wrong.
And now Derek Carr will have to sit probably for a few weeks with an injury. This will set back his progression even in the losing. Now they are at a point where maybe no one wants that job also. Maybe Lane Kiffin can come back?
4. Quick Hitters
a. Player of the week is gonna be Steve Smith Sr. after rolling his old team the Panthers Sunday. One touchdown was right place/right time and one was just a great throw and catch. I was impressed that Smith also kept his emotions down and was not risking penalties getting all up in the Carolina players and coaches faces.
b. If you need your fantasy running backs to score some points just hope they are facing the Falcon defense. The Vikings without AP saw their duo of the "A$$MAN" Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon ran wild in the upset of the Falcons. Teddy B was also impressive this game as well.
c. Nice win for the Pack at Soldier Field Sunday. Aaron Rodgers cooled down the Green Bay fans and lit up the Bears defense. Just like the NFC South, this division is up and down, but these North crews are a little better.
d. Crushing loss for the Steelers as they hope to stay with the Bengals and Ravens in the AFC North. Once again proving that any team can win on Sunday. I could see this Pittsburgh team being very up and down all season. And I think Mike Glennon needs to stay as the starter in Tampa.
The Chiefs have given two solid efforts back to back while the Patriots have been so far very unimpressive. I think Brady gets it together tonight and moves the ball against a depleted KC defense. Going with New England 27 KC 13