Quick Six: NFL Week 5
Tommy Aldrich takes a look at this past weekend in football, as well as giving his prediction for tonight's game between the Buccaneers and the Panthers.
To the joy of many fantasy owners, it was the David Johnson show in Santa Clara last Thursday as the Cardinals got back on track with a much needed win against the quarterback-less 49ers. No offense to Blaine Gabbert, but there is something brewing in San Francisco and it smells like a divided locker room. According to many reports, several “We Want Kap!” chants broke out in the stands as the 49er offense stalled and Chip Kelly has been publicly hinting at a change recently. As far I can tell, regardless of who’s playing QB, the 49ers appear to be a team devoid of serious playmakers outside - they rank 31st in team passing yards per game through week 5. On the Arizona side of things, their passer did all the right things to lead his team to victory. He gets our first prop from week 5.
Props go to:
Drew Stanton: Who managed the game on Thursday night, throwing for 128 yard and two touchdowns. Most importantly, the 10 year vet didn't turn the ball over and allowed Arizona to survive a week without Carson Palmer and secure a crucial season saving win to avoid a 1-4 start.
David Johnson: Who actually won the game for Arizona. The 225 pounder ran for 157 and two scores, adding to his league leading total. The second year back runs violently, and is able to shake off an arm tackle on nearly every touch. To me, his player comparison is Adrian Peterson.
Calais Campbell: Whose presence is felt every week by opposing offensive lines. He had an interception and two sacks against the 49ers and has helped Arizona seal the deal for a while now.
And now for a quick six from this week’s Sunday action:
I. Tom Brady is back. The G.O.A.T showed out on Sunday (against the Browns, to be fair) with 404 yards in the air and three scores. In doing so, we saw the usual fiery competitiveness that we are used to seeing in Brady - and I loved it. Brady and Belichick are such an iconic duo that seeing them standing together on the sideline already has a legendary aura to it, and it’s scary because I feel like both of them genuinely believe that their just getting started.
II. Atlanta just proved that they mean business. After disappointing the past couple seasons, Matt Ryan and his top rated passing attack confidently came into the best defense in the league’s house (with respect to the Vikings) and won. The win put the Falcons at 4-1 and cemented the them as a top dog in the NFC.
III. The Chargers just keep finding different ways to lose. (And the Raiders to keep winning). In a league full of misfortune by chance, no one has been more affected than the San Diego Chargers. In about a month they have lost their game changing wide out, a star young cornerback, a middle linebacker and key third down back. Philip Rivers continues to play well despite what he’s been dealt, but the overall lack of talent on the roster lost them the game on Sunday (again).
IV. Melvin Gordon is one positive spot on that roster. Going into the week, the second year back from Wisconsin was one of two players to have a touchdown in every single game. Though that streak ended on Sunday, the runner has looked elusive and confident going into his cuts - a much welcome sight for fans expecting production from their 1st round draft pick last season.
V: On Sunday Night Football we found out that either the Packers have a top three offensive line or Jerry Reese ought to be one nervous GM. The Giants front four on Sunday night - all $150-million of it - consistently gave Aaron Rodgers 4-5 seconds to throw the ball. If you watched the game you know what I mean, and it was absolutely heinous. You cannot have such a ludicrous lack of pass rush so as to look like a college team and expect to ever, ever, beat not only the best QB in the league...but one who actually gets better when he’s running around. The Giants have to F-I-O soon.
VI: How about the Cowboys laying Cincinatti down 28-14. This game wasn't as close as the score indicates and two rookies led the Cowboys to victory. Ezekiel Elliott has appeared as advertised, running behind that line for 130+ yards for three consecutive weeks now and Dak has done all the right things. This was big one for the Cowboys, who proved they aren't playing around at 4-1.
Monday Night Prediction: 0-5 on the season.
Last week my vision was clearly clouded in a foggy blue haze of passion (hint hint) as I fell to 0-5 on my Monday night predictions. Tonight, that all changes.
Tampa Bay will take advantage of the Cam-less Panthers in Charlotte. I like Jameis Winston to get back on track, throwing for at least three touchdowns in a 27-17 victory over the reigning NFC champions.