Jake Morgan’s NFL Weekly Rundown: Week Ten

Jake Morgan, Sports Editor

Thursday Night Game:


Colts vs Titans: Week 10 kicked off with a surprisingly good matchup between the Colts and the Titans. It looked like the Titans offense had no problems against the #1 defense in Indianapolis, as they led 17-13 going into halftime. But the second half was nothing like the first. The Colts got their run game going as Nyheim Hines ran one in for a score, then, not even three plays later, the Colts’ special teams came up with a massive blocked punt return for a score to make it 27-27 in the blink of an eye. That was basically the nail in the coffin for Tennessee, as Indianapolis’ stout defense showed up in the second half as well, not allowing another score for the Titans. A short Jacoby Brissett touchdown was the cherry on top for the Colts, as they now move to 6-3. 


Noon Games: 


Texans vs Browns: Never in my life have I seen a game be delayed due to WIND. But I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the matchup between the Browns and Texans was delayed for an hour and a half due to these bad conditions. Unfortunately, the game was about as exciting as sitting there waiting for it to start. A Cody Parkey field goal was the only thing separating these two teams at halftime, the lowest score going into halftime all year. Even in the second half, there were only two scoring plays. Star running back Nick Chubb was finally back from a knee injury as he scored the only one for the Browns, a quick nine-yard run. The Texans were able to get on the scoresheet, but it was too little too late as Deshaun Watson found Pharoah Cooper for a 16-yard touchdown. Overall, with two average defenses, you’d think that this game would be high-scoring, but unfortunately, mother nature didn’t let that happen as Cleveland won 10-7. 


Eagles vs Giants: Another NFC East divisional was played on Sunday, with the lowly Giants battling the atrocious Eagles. I hope you all can forgive me, but I did not watch this game for a second. Why would I? Watching paint dry would be more fun than watching Carson Wentz and Daniel Jones compete in a fumble-off. Nonetheless, it was the Giants who squeaked out the win. Jones, surprisingly, did not fumble in this game so props to him! In fact, Jones actually looked like Lamar Jackson… well, sort of. Jones did well in both the air and ground game as he threw for nearly 250 yards as well as adding 64 more yards on the ground, including a touchdown. Two Graham Gano field goals in the fourth quarter were enough to do it for New York, as they grabbed a crucial win 27-17.


Washington vs Lions: The Lions almost did what they do best (choke), but they didn’t this week! After going up 24-3 halfway through the third, Washington finally got some offense going. A J.D. McKissic rushing touchdown, as well as Antonio Gibson’s two scores, tied the game up for Washington. After trading late field goals to tie it up, it looked like this game was headed into overtime. Not if Matt Prater had anything to say about it! With 16 seconds left, a roughing the passer call put Detroit in field goal range. A quick nine-yard pass to Marvin Jones just left enough time for Prater to drill this absolute bomb from 59 yards and win the game for Detroit, 30-27. 


Jaguars vs Packers: What was thought to be one of the more boring games of the noon slate was quietly one of the more interesting ones. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers looked to absolutely torch the Jacksonville secondary and Green Bay’s defense looked to annihilate rookie quarterback Jake Luton. That didn’t come so easy. A back-and-forth battle throughout, the Jags were able to keep up with the fast-paced Packers due to great running from undrafted free-agent James Robinson. Robinson rushed 23 times for 109 yards and even had two touchdowns, but both were called back due to holding penalties. Even without those two touchdowns, Jake Luton was able to make it interesting. Luton found Keelan Cole (who returned a punt 91 yards earlier in the game) for a touchdown to start the third and tie it up at 17. Early in the fourth, Chase McLaughlin drilled a 31-yard field goal to put the Jags up. Well, whenever you’re going up against Aaron Rodgers, long-term leads are hard to come by. Rodgers found Devante Adams for a six-yard touchdown to seal it for the Packers late in the fourth for a 24-20 win. 


Buccaneers vs Panthers: A high-scoring affair saw the Bucs dominate in the second half, leading them to a 46-23 victory. Everything was clicking for Tampa Bay offensively on Sunday, and it needed to. A week prior, they got absolutely stomped by New Orleans and that rage came out against Carolina. Brady returned to his old self, throwing for 341 yards and three touchdowns. Ronald Jones was finally the running back Bruce Arians and Buccaneers fans wanted him to be as well. Jones rushed for nearly 200 yards on the ground, and this 98-yard touchdown run further solidified his role in the offense. It was clear to see that there was no hangover from the Saints game as Tampa Bay put on a show once again. 


Afternoon Games:


Broncos vs Raiders: Utter domination on both sides of the ball led to a key victory for the Raiders, 37-12. Josh Jacobs was the savior in this game, scoring two touchdowns while rushing for 112 yards. It’s been a rather down year for Jacobs so it was good to finally see a breakout performance. Oakland’s defense was on another level as well, picking off Drew Lock four times over the course of the game. It looked like a rather close game going into the third quarter with the Raiders up 10-6, but, as we saw throughout week 10, it was a second-half surge for Oakland. Scoring on every drive except for one, the Raiders were able to shrug off the Broncos like it was nothing. They now move to 6-3 and stay in contention for a playoff spot in the AFC.


Chargers vs Dolphins: The Dolphins continue to shine behind rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa as they won their third straight game 29-21. However, no one really shined on either team with both quarterbacks throwing for under 200 yards, both running backs running for under 100 yards, and no receivers going over 50 yards. The Chargers were able to make it interesting, however, as Keenan Allen caught a touchdown to cut the lead to eight with under two minutes remaining. Sadly, LA had no timeouts and so the Dolphins were able to kneel out the clock. 


Bills vs Cardinals: Oh my word, what a game this was. We saw everything from diving touchdowns to top-10 catches of all time; it was incredible. In the third quarter, it looked like it was a win for the Bills as they were up 23-9 after a 22-yard touchdown to Cole Beasley. Second-year quarterback Kyler Murray had something to say to that. Murray decided to take the game into his own hands as his former baseball career helped him to rush for two touchdowns in the third quarter alone, making it a 26-23 game going into the fourth. This is where things got crazy. After a pretty lackluster 11 minutes, Josh Allen threw a pick with just under five to play, and it looked like the Cardinals would go down and score a late touchdown. Instead, they punted after a quick three-and-out to give the ball back to the Bills. Buffalo then marched down the field on 12 plays and scored a touchdown on a miraculous diving catch by Stefon Diggs. With just 34 seconds left, it looked hopeless for a Cardinals team that had struggled mightily in the fourth quarter. That doesn’t really matter though, especially not when you have the best wide receiver in the NFL. After three completions to move the ball downfield, it was hail mary time. Kyler Murray escaped the pocket and threw an absolute bomb to the end zone, where Deandre Hopkins caught this game-winning touchdown with three guys draped all over him. One of the greatest catches ever sealed the deal for Arizona as they stunned the Bills 32-30. 


Seahawks vs Rams: Two teams in the most competitive division squared in LA on Sunday, as the Rams were able to come out on top 23-16. A sloppy game from Russell Wilson saw him throw two interceptions as well as give up a fumble. We didn’t see that at all through the first five weeks of the season, as Wilson was getting MVP consideration. Lately, however, Wilson has turned the ball over six times in the past three weeks. Give credit to where credit is due, the Rams defense was suffocating. Along with forcing the interceptions and the fumbles, LA was able to sack Wilson six times. An overall dominant performance from the Rams defense was too much for the Seahawks to handle, giving them their third loss in the last four games. 


49ers vs Saints: Two teams that were projected to be amazing played in New Orleans on Sunday, with the team that actually turned out to be good, the Saints, winning by two scores 27-13. Alvin Kamara was Alvin Kamara on Sunday as he only scored a modest three touchdowns. Kamara’s rushing numbers haven’t been great all year–in fact, he only mustered up 15 yards against the Niners–but his receiving ability is what makes him a game-changer. Kamara led the team in receptions with seven for 83 yards and a score. The bigger news, however, was the injury to Drew Brees. Brees was sacked in the third quarter of Sunday’s game and didn’t return. Doctors have said that he suffered multiple fractured ribs as well as a collapsed lung. Not a great sign for Saints fans. 


Bengals vs Steelers: A game that was lopsided throughout saw the Steelers beat their rival Bengals 36-10. Although Pittsaburh was 8-0, I thought that the Bengals could give the Steelers some trouble, but boy was I wrong. It was a quick 12-0 start at the end of the first quarter and it grew from there. After Tee Higgins caught a quick touchdown, it was all Pittsburgh. The Steelers then went on a 24-0 run and even led 36-7 at one point. Ben Roethlisberger looked phenomenal, throwing for 333 yards to go along with four scores. When Big Ben puts up numbers like that, you just know the trio of Dionte Johnson, Juju Smith-Schuster, and Chase Claypool are going to thrive, and that’s exactly what they did. Besides all three of them catching at least one touchdown (Claypool had two) all three had over 50 yards receiving and four or more catches. 


Sunday Night Game:


Ravens vs Patriots: Before the season started, this game could be dubbed “game of the year” based on the matchup alone, but the Patriots have been underwhelming this year. However, that didn’t matter in the slightest, as Cam Newton and the Patriots were able to knock off the Ravens 23-17. On a night where rain was trecorus, you’d think that both teams would rely on the run. The Ravens discredited that idea as they leaned on the passing game more; unfortunately, it did not work. New England went with the ground-and-pound approach and helped them secure their fourth win of the year. Damien Harris was the lead back for the Pats, as that role has seemed to fluctuate throughout the year, and played pretty well. He had 22 carries for 121 yards–both his highest of the season. On the receiving end, Jakobi Meyers was able to, once again, show that he is the lead guy in New England as he caught 5 balls for 59 yards–exactly half of Newton’s passing yards. 


Monday Night Game:


Vikings vs Bears: Two teams on either side of winning/losing streaks (Bears losing three in a row, Vikings winning two in a row) met at Soldier Field on Monday night. It was tough picking a winner in this one, as the Bears had a solid defense but zero offense and the Vikings were the exact opposite. One team needed the worse side of the ball to play better, and the Vikings got that in their defense and were able to win 19-13. The key coming into the game for Minnesota was to feed Dalvin Cook until he A) was carted off the field or B) could barely breathe. Luckily neither of those things happened as Cook matched a season-high 30 carries. Although touches were abundant, he was only able to muster 3.2 yards per carry against the stingy Bears d-line. Since the run game was not as effective as they had hoped, it was time to lean on Kirk Cousins (0-9 on Monday night in his career) to make plays, and he actually did. Early in the first, he found Theilen who made an incredible one-handed catch for a touchdown. Then, later in the fourth, he found Theilen again for the touchdown that would seal the deal for the Vikings.