Week 9 in the NFL saw rivalries renewed, a butt fumble-redemption story, continued dominance by the AFC, and the almighty Cardinals laying waste to the rest of the NFC. We’ve just passed the halfway mark, so let’s get footballin!
The Brady-Manning rivalry
Although this wasn’t a last-minute shootout, the semi-annual showdown of the two best quarterbacks in the league always makes for some must-watch television. The Broncos were essentially done at halftime after the Patriots scoured their defense for four-straight scores including, a Julian Edelman punt return for a touchdown. Still, in the end the two QBs combined for 771 yards, six touchdowns to only three interceptions. I’m no mathematician, but that’s pretty good. Destined to meet in the playoff—barring major injuries—expect another showdown of the BroncRiots this winter.
The man most famous for the butt fumble received a wave of redemption as he came off the bench for the injured Nick Foles. Sanchez threw for two touchdowns (as well as two INTs, but you know…) as the Eagles beat back the ferocious defense of the Houston Texans for a ten-point victory. The hit on Foles resulted in a fractured collarbone, so Sanchez still has some time to get to back butt fumble ways. But when you compare his week to the past eight for the Jets, things are looking up for the old Mr. Upton. That said, this never gets old:
Speaking of the Jets, they faced off against the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium with somewhat expected results. It did however manage to upstage the butt fumble with a butt touchdown. As the Jets were attempting a goal-line stand with the Chirfs threatening, Alex Smith’s pass was deflected at the line and right into the hands of a seated Anthony Fasano (not to be confused with the Godmode artist), who quickly jumped from his rear and into the end zone. They might not be one of the three worst teams in the NFL, but you can’t say the Jets You can never say the Jets are not involved in SOME kind of game innovation.
Ye olde screamface had a lousy day in Miami. In the first eight weeks of the season, Rivers had a total of five interceptions, but Week 9 saw him throw three INTs and lose a fumble while he only completing 12 passes for 138. Fantasy football be damned! Don’t fret for Phil too much, however, he’ll come home to the warm embrace of his seven children. Looks like the guy doesn’t leave it all on the field, am I right?
The San Francisco 49ers signed Kap to a big off-season contract and so far he’s looked little the part. Against the under-.500 Saint Louis Rams, he was sacked eight times and fumbled three times, losing two of them. The last one was at the goal line with two seconds left in the game, needing only a field goal to tie. Combine that with the underperforming Seahawks and the NFC West just turned into Arizona’s to lose. Yup.
Tony Romo was pulled before the game because he had a bad back, so Brandon Weeden got the start—or something resembling a start. The ‘Boys got a jump when Tyler Patmon intercepted Carson Palmer and ran it back 58 yards for a touchdown, but Weeden was only able to manage 183 yards through the air with two interceptions, one sack and one garbage-time touchdown. Most surprisingly might be that the Cardinals were able to stifle DeMarco Murray, ending his season-long 100-yard game streak. The Cowboys are always due for a mid-season meltdown, but now they can’t even blame Tony Romo for it. Where’s the fun in that?
Oh hello bad week of fantasy, how are you? The player who generated the second highest point total for me was my kicker. My QBs only managed ten points each, but at least I benched the one who didn’t have two lost fumbles. Mohamed Sanu was the point leader with 16.40 points on 95 yards and a touchdown. LeSean McCoy went double digits for only the second time in six weeks. It was a close game and I was banking on Trent Richardson to come through with a gritty Monday Night performance, but instead what I got was gristle, despite the Colts blowing out the Giants.
What to watch for in Week 10
San Francisco at New Orleans puts two NFC powerhouses suffering through meh seasons together. Kansas City at Buffalo is suddenly a pivotal AFC match-up with playoff implications. Chicago at Green Bay likely ends your Sunday night with Aaron Rodgers putting up 400 yards and Jay Cutler wearing a cowboy hat on the sideline. Carolina at Philadelphia is your Monday Night game, and while both teams are streaky, it could provide a crazy attack of interesting football.