Patriots 43, Chiefs 40— This was 37th game in NFL history where losing team scored 40+ points; three of those games have been this year. Kansas City scored 31 points in the second half and still lost. Chiefs covered seven of last 10 games as road underdogs; they’re 6-0 vs spread this season. New England scored 38-38-43 points in its last three games.
Steelers 28, Bengals 21— Marvin Lewis has coached the Bengals for 16 years; Pittsburgh is 16-2 in Cincinnati during that time (two playoff games). Antonio Brown scored the winning TD with 0:10 left on a 31-yard pass from Roethlisberger, who threw for 369 yards. Steelers are 10-6-1 vs spread in last 16 games as road dogs. Bengals play in Kansas City Sunday; they’ve lost their last five Sunday night games.
Dolphins 31, Bears 28 OT— Chicago’s three road games were decided by total of six points; Miami’s backup QB Brock Osweiler emerged from obscurity to throw for 380 yards as Dolphins survived a goal line fumble in OT to improve to 4-2. Osweiler is a surprising 4-0 in OT games; his overall career record is 14-12.
Bears turned ball over twice in the red zone, missed a 52-yard FG in OT.
Chase Daniel is the Bears’ backup QB; he’s 32 and has been in the NFL for nine years- the guy has started two NFL games, but has banked $28,304,317. He’s completed 51 of 78 passes, with one TD, one INT in his career, and he’s made $28M+. Its good to be him.
Falcons 34, Buccaneers 29— Tampa Bay outgained Atlanta 512-416 but lost its third game in a row, allowing 38 ppg. Reality for Bucs’ coach Dirk Koetter is that he’s probably going to get fired unless his team turns things around soon— the face of the franchise is a QB who was suspended three games for groping a Uber driver, and they went 2-1 while he was out. No bueno.
Here is a breakdown of Atlanta’s offense:
2 road games, both on grass fields: 22 drives, three TD’s, 14.5 ppg
4 home games, all indoors on turf: 40 drives, 17 TD’s, 34.5 ppg
Texans 20, Bills 13— Buffalo backup QB Nathan Peterman is the worst NFL QB I’ve seen since Jerry Golsteyn played for four teams from 1977-83, going 2-7 as a starter. Golsteyn threw two career TD passes, 13 INT’s, but Peterman may be worse— he threw a pick-6 in this game with 1:30 left as Texans have now won consecutive games by 3-3-7 points after an 0-3 start.
Both teams scored one offensive TD in this game, on drives of 32-29 yards. Buffalo threw for 129 yards, giving them a total of 295 PY in their last three games. Deshaun Watson got sacked seven times; if the Texans don’t improve their pass blocking, Watson won’t last much longer.
Redskins 23, Panthers 17— Since 2015, Redskins are now 16-7 vs spread coming off a loss; they had a 14-yard edge in field position in this game, converted on 7-16 3rd down plays, compared to 3-9 for Carolina. Washington allowed 9-14-17 points in its wins, 24-31 in its losses. Panthers are 3-0 at home, 0-2 on the road; they threw 40 passes, ran ball only 18 times in this game.
Rams 23, Broncos 20— Denver is first team since the ’78 Buffalo Bills to give up 270+ rushing yards in consecutive games; in today’s pass-happy era, thats terrible. This was a hard-hitting game; lot of players limped off on both sides.
On a cold day in Denver where the snow mostly stopped before the game, Rams ran the ball down the Broncos’ throats when it mattered most, on a 13-play, 72-yard drive that took 5:39 off the clock and ended with a FG that gave LA an insurmountable 23-13 lead.
Jared Goff celebrated his 24th birthday with a win, but looked uncomfortable in sub-freezing temps; Rams play in Chicago December 9.
Minnesota 27, Arizona 17— Cardinals are 3-0-1 vs spread in their last four games; they scored six TDs in last two games, but two of them are scored by their defense. Minnesota ran ball for 185 yards here and outgained Arizona, 411-269. Redbirds lost last nine visits to the Twin Cities; their last win here was in 1977, the Don Coryell era.
NFL has seven new head coaches this year; they’re a combined 12-28 so far- three of those seven teams were .500 or better LY- Tennessee was in the damn playoffs, and they fired their coach.
Chargers 38, Browns 14— Quietly, the Chargers are 4-2, with losses to Rams/Chiefs, who are a combined 11-1. Bolts ran ball for 246 yards and averaged 9.2 yds/pass attempt- they had seven plays of 20+ yards, five of them on first down.
Chargers are 2-0 outside California, winning/covering in Buffalo/Cleveland- they like Lake Erie, but coach Anthony Lynn mustn’t like kickers- Sunday he used his 7th different kicker in his 22 games as a head coach.
Jets 42, Colts 34— Gang Green scored 48-34-42 points in their two wins, 12-17-12 in their losses; Jet fans have to be fired up that they’ve scored 34+ points three times already with a rookie QB under center. Under Bowles, Jets are 17-9-1 vs spread at home.
Andrew Luck threw for 301 yards and four TD’s, but he doesn’t get much help; on their second offensive play, Indy tried a screen pass that any high school team could execute, but instead it bounced off the Colts’ receiver and the Jets had an easy pick-6 to start their day with.
Seahawks 27, Raiders 3— If I owned an NFL team and was paying my coach $100M over the next 10 years (yikes!!!), I’d expect more than the sorry performances the Raiders have been producing, especially since the last coach was 12-4 two years ago.
Seattle ran ball for 171-190-155 yards in its last three games; they’ve won three of last four games and evened their record at 3-3. Oakland is 1-6-1 vs spread in its last eight pre-bye games.
The last six NFL games in England/Mexico were won by an average of 26 points (32-6).
Cowboys 40, Jaguars 7— Jacksonville’s uniforms looked like the old Memphis Maniax from the XFL; thats not a compliment, and their play was uglier than their uniforms. In their last three games, Jaguars are minus-8 in turnover ratio- not good.
Dallas is 3-0 at home, 0-3 on the road; they scored four TD’s on 11 drives, after scoring total of three TD’s on 31 drives in previous three games. Cowboys had a 12-yard advantage in field position. Jaguars never had a snap in the Dallas red zone.
Ravens 21, Titans 0— Not often an NFL team gets 11 sacks in a game, but Baltimore did here. while Tennessee had zero sacks. Total yardage in this ugly game was 361-106; Tennessee had only seven first downs, was 1-10 on 3rd down and ran only 40 plays- Baltimore ran 72.
Only once in six games has Tennessee scored more than six points in the first half; 12-20-2 in last 34 games where spread was three or fewer points.