We go around the NFL and identify those things trending upward and those pointing down in Week 3.
Week 3 in the NFL was absolutely not without its share of upsets, shockers and nail-biters. Also, thanks to a certain resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the entire league saw an uptick in pregame controversy — more on that later.
Let’s take a look at the 7 Up & 7 Down from Week 3 in the NFL.
Yeah. The crucial “son-of-a-bitch”-laced comments by Donald Trump seemed to galvanize the entire league — from ownership to coaches to players. There was a drastic increase in anthem demonstrations, and three teams (the Steelers, Seahawks and Titans) stayed in the locker room during the pregame anthem. Definitely a situation to be monitored closely moving forward.
Windy City Ground Game
The Chicago Bears pulled off a surprising upset of the Steelers by primarily getting the ball to two players — running backs Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen. They consistently gashed their way to a dominant performance on the ground and won in overtime 20-17.
Winning and the Jets?
Speaking of dominant! The New York Jets narrowly missed shutting out the Miami Dolphins 20-6 in NY. The defense embarrassed Kay W Cutler and the Miami offense all game long.
The Bears and Packers were victorious in overtime. The Eagles won on a last second 61-yard Jake Elliott field goal to beat the Giants. And in familiar fashion, Tom Brady tossed a 34-yard TD in the final minute to snatch victory away from a game Texans squad.
What do you Blake of it?
In London, Blake Bortles put on a show in route to blasting the Ravens 44-7. Bortles threw for 4 touchdowns in what might be the best game of his career thus far.
Act your age Tommy!
Tom Brady threw 5 touchdowns, including the aforementioned game-winner over Houston. The 40-year-old living legend continues to defy age, time and life! Now, if he could only play defense for New England.
Kareem The Dream
It is becoming commonplace for rookie running back Kareem Hunt to make a key, big play when the Chiefs need to seal a win. Week 3 was no different, as Hunt raced 69 yards to pay dirt, closing out the Chargers 24-10. Hunt finished with 172 yards on just 17 carries Sunday.
Baltimore beat down…
In that London massacre at the hands of Jacksonville, that seemingly-vaunted Baltimore defense was steamrolled by the Jags. And Joe Flacco and the offense was uninspired all day long. The 44-7 blasting will only reopen doubt about the legitimate quality of this team.
After not throwing an interception last week, Winston threw 3 of them to the Minnesota defense in Week 3. The Bucs got bashed 31-17, and it wasn’t even that close. If Tampa is going to take the next step into the playoffs, Winston must take better care of the football.
What The Bell?
Another week, another sub-quality outing by Le’Veon Bell and the Pittsburgh running game. With just one run over 10 yards on the day, its becoming overly apparent that missing training camp really hurt Bell…and is costing him money by the week.
After Trevor Siemian carved up the Cowboys in Week 2, there was substantial, yet premature, talk of how Siemian was quickly becoming a star in this league. Hold up! Sunday showed just how flawed Siemian cam when his defense is not performing at a flat out historic level. Siemian can be good, but he’s still a work in progress, people.
The Seattle Seahawks continue to be maddeningly inconsistent. No one saw the Tennessee Titans absolutely manhandling the Seahawks coming. Between Russell Wilson, the offensive line and the front seven, there is much to be desired in Seattle at this point.
Can’t change their stripes
The Cincinnati Bengals jumped out to a 21-7 lead on Green Bay after an enthusiastic start. Unfortunately, the Bengals dud what the Bengals do and blew it, going on to fall in overtime 27-24.
The New York Giants’ season so but ended Sunday after that last-second loss to Philly, dropping the Giants to 0-3. The NFC East is no pushover, so it’ll be a shock if the G-men are in the thick of things come season’s end.