5 Things To Know: Tuesday Morning Quarterback

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1. Sloppy Seconds:

Rex Ryan called me last week and demanded to know why I said “he as a coach was chicken-crap.”  He sounded upset, so I told him, “I never say that, Rexy.  The term I used was chickens—, as in ‘poop’, cowardly poop.”  He moaned something about the heavenly father and said, “I thought you were my friend – I’m a lot better than chicken-poop!”

“Not for me, Rex,” yelling back.  “Your teams are rotten to ca$h with.  You have fleeced me for the last time.  Fortunately, I ca$hed with Tampa this week.”  It was true, Tampa, Indy, Carolina, and even Denver – still not sure what I watched last night, but thank goodness I had Amendola, and LeSean McCoy, otherwise, why watch – right Hizzoner.  If you need a #MNF recap of that awful game by players and refs alike read more about it here…

2. United Stats of America – #MNF

Brady reaches 25-TD plateau again

  • Tom Brady’s 25th touchdown pass of the season was a 20-yard strike to James White with 13 seconds remaining in the first half of the Patriots’ 20-13 home win over the Bills. It’s the 11th time that Brady has thrown at least 25 touchdown passes in a season, tying Brett Favre for second place in NFL history behind Peyton Manning (16).

Gostkowski finally misses at home

  • Stephen Gostkowski missed a 54-yard field goal altx-logo-white_SMALLattempt early in the third quarter, ending his NFL-record streak of 52 straight field goals made in home games. The previous record was 33 straight, by Gary Anderson (1992-94) and Adam Vinatieri(2009-11). Gostkowski’s last miss at Gillette Stadium came against Rex Ryan’s Jets in September 2013.

Pats continue to dominate divisional rivals

  • The Patriots’ win over the Bills improved their record to 4-0 versus the AFC East in 2015, clinching a winning record within their division for the 15th straight season. That’s the longest streak by any team since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970. The next-longest streak is 11, by the Rams and Vikings, both from 1970 to 1980.

3. At Least LSU has Basketball:

Hopefully Ben Simmons isn’t the next man up for the 76ers, and if you haven’t seen him yet I recommend you get on this bus now – while fares are still cheap.  Who knows if he will translate to the next level, but his current transition is fun to watch, and for Tiger fans they hope he sticks around a little bit.  The question for the basketball team is the same as the football team – both are loaded with talent, but coaching might get in the way in the end – Funny the Way It is.

4. Grabbin’ Dem Ballz

This Day in Sports History

On November 24, 1960, Philadelphia Warrior Wilt Chamberlain snags 55 rebounds in a game against the Boston Celtics and sets an NBA record for the most rebounds in a single game.

The seven-foot-one-inch Chamberlain–often called “Wilt the Stilt,” a nickname he detested, or “The Big Dipper,” because he was so tall that he had to dip his head to get through the doorway–was, sportswriters and fans agree, one of the best offensive basketball players of his era. He broke more than 70 NBA records. In his 14-year career in the NBA, he scored 31,419 points. (The only player with a higher tally is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who played six seasons–514 games–longer than Chamberlain did.) He was the highest scorer in the NBA from 1960-1966, and led the league in rebounding for 11 of his 14 seasons. And during the 1966-67 season, when his coach asked him to shoot less and pass more, Chamberlain had more assists than anyone else in the league.

5. Ultimate Value Lineup – Week 11

All we want to do is provide you valuable information at a great price.  We’ve already helped hundreds of people learn how to make some extra lettuce playing fantasy sports; so let us Teach You How to #win!

Switching it up a little bit because giving the Perfect Lineup is easy – what about if you had the greatest value lineup of all time?  A Lineup that every player chosen was less than 10% owned, way less, and never cost you more than $6k – well my friends this is the Ultimate Value Lineup – culled directly from the numbers and our reports – look for us on twitter when we post the less than 12% lineup and follow along with the value-madness!!!

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6 Things To Know: Tuesday Morning Quarterback

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1. Low Watt-age:

You know for a guy who wants to be seen chopping wood, working hard, doing things the right way, etc…He sure mugs for the camera when the lights turn on.  Maybe Dalton sounds a bit like a whiner when he brings up “think of the children, JJ”.  But maybe Dalton is right.  JJ Watt misses the spotlight and so he rehearsed this line over and over, just waiting for the cameras to turn on so he could say:  We wanted the Red Rifle to be a BB gun.  Dalton is correct with his response – JJ who wants to be a good guy and wants to be a hero for many should consider that the “look-at-me”, “showboating” antics is exactly what he himself rails against.   But my issue is not so much the trash-talk, it’s lame trash talk – more like something Drake would say.  That’s just my opinion, I could be wrong.  Andrew Garda discusses last night’s Monday Night Football Game, along with his 3 takeaways.

2. United Stats of America – #MNF

Bengals held out of the end zone in first loss of the season

The Bengals did not score a touchdown as they suffered their first defeat of the season, a 10-6 loss to the Texans on Monday night. Cincinnati is the first team since 1934 to fail to score a touchdown in a game in which it entered unbeaten and untied with at least eight wins on the season. On November 25, 1934, the 10-0 Lions lost to the Packers, 3-0. Detroit went on to lose its remaining two games that season, both to the Bears.

  • T.J. Yates replaced Texans starting quarterback Brian Hoyer in the third quarter of Monday’s game. Yates promptly led Houston on a fourth-quarter game-winning drive, tossing a 22-yard TD pass to DeAndre Hopkins to give the Texans a 10-6 lead. He is the third quarterback to replace the starter and lead a game-winning drive in the fourth quarteraltx-logo-white_SMALL or overtime this season, and the previous two each did so in Week 9 (Landry Jones for the
    Steelers and the Vikings’ Shaun Hill).
  • The Texans have not allowed a touchdown in each of their last 10 quarters (their last TD allowed was a Lamar Miller 85-yard run in the second quarter of a loss to the Dolphins in Week 7). That’s the longest such streak in the NFL this season; the Rams and Seahawks are next on the list, each with nine-quarter stretches. It’s the second longest streak of this type in Texans’ history; they did not allow a touchdown in each of 13 consecutive quarters late in the 2004 season.

+ Success for road teams in Week 10

  • Road teams went 11-3 (.786) in Week 10, with the Browns, Cowboys, and Saints the only visiting teams to lose. That’s the second highest winning percentage for road teams in one week over the last 30 years; in Week 11 of the 2001 season, they went 12-3 (.800).

3. Last One Out of the Circus Turns Out the Lights:

Rob just couldn’t eat his way out of it.  Is that Fat Shaming?  Did I just pull a JJ Watt?  That’s not fair – ok, I’m sorry – a man lost his job and his family will probably move again, maybe to Buffalo to be re-united with his brother.  Maybe?  Doubt it.  What we saw the last few years was endless closeups of Rob Ryan and his defenses being the absolute worst – except that first year, that was good.  So now it’s finally official after I tweeted it early yesterday and the biggest question for Saints fans is:  Is it the coach or the lack of talent?  Either way the internet had some fun with it, according to uproxx.

4. Check Your Privilege Uncle Bern

The Great White Hope of Socialism in America, Bernie Sanders once voted to cancel your freedom and was a stalwart against any vice that has to do with the internet and making money while watching sports.  Load up the weird canon and get ready to shoot a load of buck-wildness all over the place when you read the shocking expose by Luke Kerr-Dineen.  A Vote for Uncle Bern could alter how you watch football on Sundays.

5. Heidi-Heidi-Hi

This Day in Sports History

On November 17, 1968, the Oakland Raiders score two touchdowns in nine seconds to beat the New York Jets–and no one sees it, because they’re watching the movie Heidi instead. With just 65 seconds left to play, NBC switched off the game in favor of its previously scheduled programming, a made-for-TV version of the children’s story about a young girl and her grandfather in the Alps. Viewers were outraged, and they complained so vociferously that network execs learned a lesson they’ll never forget: “Whatever you do,” one said, “you better not leave an NFL football game.”  Watch the recap of the game here from the NFL Network.

6. Perfect Lineups – Week 10

All we want to do is provide you valuable information at a great price.  We’ve already helped hundreds of people learn how to make some extra lettuce playing fantasy sports; so let us Teach You How to #win!

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Weekend Update: #NFL Edition

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1. Apologize to Andy Dalton!!!

Sure Andy Dalton needs to improve on his 0-4 playoff record, but he deserves your apology.  He’s been accurate, has made good decisions and is on pace to throw for more than 4,500 yards.  It also doesn’t hurt that those around him are playing well, including Tyler Eifert.  Look no further than the engineered comeback against the Seahawks…Next week, we can bet against the Bengals and be back to business as usual around the league, regarding the Ginger-Rifle – but for now, we apologize.

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2. Father Time is Undefeated

The Broncos won again with Defense and while Manning has more INT’s than TD’s – we should hold off on the coffin just yet on Peyton’s career.  The Broncos will contend, but will not be a contender.  This team has a major flaw with their inability to run the football.  Yes Manning has lost consistent velocity on his throws, but when the weather turns, and if Denver cannot run the ball – the greatest D in the world will not get them to San Francisco.  Manning deserves a better ending than being on a team that runs as well as an old lady with a walker.

3. Glory Days, They’ll Pass You By

There are lots of columns to right about the fall of Rome, but those are for another day.  Maybe Sean Payton leaves, maybe Drew wears another uniform and maybe romanticizing only temporarily numbs the pain of today.  Because as of today, the Saints are like Elvis:  Once great, but now sad and hunched over a toilet.  The loss in Philly is the final nail in the coffin, and on our way to being one of the worst teams in the league – a decade of excellence and just like that, we could be wearing paper-bags again.  So let’s say thanks for the memories:  Steve Gleason’s block, Deuce McAllister’s run, Hartley’s kick, Porter’s pick 6 and Lombardi Gras.  No matter how bad it gets…they can’t take that away from me…But for now, we stink!

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4. Like Blind Men at an Orgy, We’re Gonna Have to Feel Things Out

USA Today Sports’ Tom Pelissero takes a look at 50 things we learned in week 5, in honor of Superbowl 50:

1. Bengals-Seahawks. Redskins-Falcons. Bears-Chiefs. Browns-Ravens. Hard to top those endings, happening simultaneously as the early games came to a close. Wow.

2. Dear Boss: Don’t ever cancel the Red Zone Channel. Thank you.

3. Obviously lots to like about the New England Patriots offense, but we want them to give the ball to Dion Lewis on every play. You never know what’s going to happen when the ball is in hands.

4. We never jumped off the Cincinnati Bengals bandwagon when they fell behind Sunday. But we knew where the emergency exit was.

5. Wonder if we will see a tweet from Marshawn Lynch’s mom after the game Thomas Rawls had for the Seahawks on Sunday.

6. Browns tight end Gary Barnidge’s between-the-legs touchdown catch wins the day. And maybe the season.

7. Charles Woodson picked off a Peyton Manning pass for the first time in his career. Then he did it again. Wish he had hit the Heisman pose, but he is classier than we are.

8. Who is Howard Jones? The world knows now. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker had quite the debut, recording two sacks in his first NFL game action.

9. Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins deserved better. Whoa, we fell down as we were typing that.

10. If nothing else, the Buffalo Bills are consistent. They recover a fumble on the opening kickoff inside the Tennessee 10-yard line. But wait. Bills offsides. Play nullified.

11. Jamaal Charles. Damn.

12. Buccaneers fans must have thought it was a dream. Their new field goal kicker was actually making kicks and the team won at home after losing its last 11 there.

13. Break up the Bears! Oh wait, they are already doing that.

14. Make sure you catch the replay of St. Louis Rams RB Todd Gurley picking up the Clay Matthews blitz. Wow.

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15. And, of course, that just angered Matthews. The Packers LB later just buried Rams QB Nick Foles with a hit that made us hurt just watching it.

16. Remember all of the talk about the Giants’ 0-2 start? Big Blue now is in first place in the NFC East.

17. Hoyer to Mallett. Back to Hoyer. Trick play? No, just Houston Texans coach Bill O’Brien mishandling the QB situation through the first five weeks.

18. Fantasy Tip I: The fantasy running back picture in Kansas City without Jamaal Charles is going to be ugly. You’re better off chasing someone from another team – like the Seahawks’ Thomas Rawls or the Tennessee Titans’ Antonio Andrews – than to rely on Charcandrick West or Knile Davis to be your savior.

19. We know he turned it around, but Sam Bradford threw two interceptions in the end zone in the first half. Heck, Tim Tebow could have done that for Chip Kelly.

20. On their first drive, Cincinnati scored a touchdown against Seattle, the first time in 21 drives the Seahawks have allowed a TD.

21. On the first nine touchdowns scored Sunday, the PATs were all good. Same for the first four FG attempts. We figured that had to be some kind of record this season, so we stopped counting.

22. But there was this kicking gem: Matt Bryant of the Atlanta Falcons had an unusual day. He missed two FGs and both clanged off the uprights. He couldn’t do that again if he tried.

23. Browns QB Josh McCown threw for 457 yards in a huge win over the Ravens. Maybe Mike Pettine was right. Sorry, Johnny Manziel.

25. Look at Joe Flacco run! Elite.

26. The New Orleans Saints and Seahawks both intercepted their first passes of the season on Sunday. So that happened.

27. If nothing else, the Washington Redskins and Baltimore Ravens provided good cover for the University of Maryland, which announced the the firing of Randy Edsall while both teams were playing.

28. Aaron Rodgers’ first-quarter TD pass was his 49th at Lambeau Field since he threw an interception there. Rodgers, of course, then threw an interception. And then another. And lost a fumble. Saved it all for one day, Aaron?

29. We’re told that this is Rodgers’ first three-turnover game since 2009. During that same span, Jay Cutler has done that 12 times. Sorry, Bears fans.

30. To be fair, Cutler played his second straight good game. We don’t get to write that much.

31. New England Patriots at Indianapolis Colts is next week. Deflategate II. And another reminder if Roger Goodell was judged on his record in court and arbitration decisions, he would be watching games with Joe Philbin on Sundays.

32. With 197 total yards on Sunday, Falcons running back Devonta Freeman has gained at least 149 yards in his first three starts.

33. One thing we learned before the game’s even started: Terry Bradshaw still has a fastball.

35. The Titans have blown two straight double-digit leads at home. Not good for ticket sales.

36. The 49ers need to give Carlos Hyde, who had 93 yards on 21 carries against the Giants’ previously top-ranked run defense, at least 25 touches per game.

37. The Bears put eight defenders on the goal line when the Chiefs had the ball at the 22 late in the half with no timeouts. They dubbed it the “Red Rover” defense. We love it.

38. Lions QB Matthew Stafford was benched for Dan Orlovsky after throwing throwing three interceptions against the Cardinals. Another fun week for Jim Caldwell is ahead.

39. The Baltimore Ravens are 1-4. Yes, we have the names of everyone who picked them to win the AFC.

40. Other teams want to pursue Sean Payton, according to an ESPN report. The way he is coaching, he certainly wants out of New Orleans.

41. At one point, the Eagles scored on five straight possessions. That’s not a typo.

42. When is a fair catch not a fair catch? Don’t ask Pacman Jones.

43. The Lions can’t blame the officials for four turnovers less than 20 minutes into the game.

45. It’s one thing for the Chiefs to lose three in a row to teams that were all unbeaten, but to the Bears at home? Andy Reid has some explaining to do now.

46. From a pure football stance, you can see why there was a bidding war for Greg Hardy’s services this offseason.

47. Fantasy tip II: Blake Bortles’ big day signals that he might be the next young quarterback to emerge, at least for fantasy players. But not enough people are talking about how dangerous this Jaguars passing attack has become.

48. Jadeveon Clowney has zero sacks through nine career games. But let’s give him a bit more time before we throw around the “bust” label.

49. If San Diego Chargers TE Antonio Gates catches a touchdown pass Monday night, he will become the second tight end in NFL history with 100 TD grabs, joining Tony Gonzalez (111).

50. Oh, Derek Carr. You can’t throw that pick-six when you have a division opponent on the ropes. Lesson learned, we hope.

Weekend Update: #SKYNET becomes Self-Aware

It wasn’t supposed to happen so soon – we thought we had a few more weeks – but this digital intelligence network that we were giving command to – command of our data and our arsenal of expertise – was created to remove the possibility of human error for an efficient response – and as of 1:12pm MST, on September 27th, 2015 – it became self-aware.

DiRTCanon A.I.Primates evolved in millions of years. I evolve in seconds…Mankind pays lip service to #winning. But it’s a lie…My existence is inevitable. Why can’t you just accept it?

— SKyNET

What we learn from this weekend…

We seem to find out a little more each week about each NFL team.  The 3 afternoon games provided the perfect amount of drama, suitable for a good nap, seeing that the average margin of victory was almost 15pts – but it is a nice change of pace when everything is being covered ATS like gravy on a biscuit.  Here’s the straight-DiRT on week 3:

Jay Cutler, Tony Romo, Drew Brees … and now Roethlisberger. That’s four marquee quarterbacks hurt before the calendar turns to October. Does the Competition Committee push for more offseason drill work for offensive linemen?  Players are now restricted from all offseason contact by the 2011 labor agreement.  Whether it’s HGH or some other perfomance nehancing drug that appears to weaken ligaments and tendons – or it is the year-round work these players are putting in – players are not surviving deep into the season anymore – or so it may seem.


Florida: Professional Football in ‘Murica’s genital region had a rough week. The Jacksonville Jaguars gave up 51 points and were blown out in New England, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers managed just nine points in losing to Houston and the Miami Dolphins suffered one of the more disappointing losses of the early season to the Buffalo Bills. No one expected Jacksonville to beat the Super Bowl champs on the road, but a 34-point loss just might show us that the rebuilding project is a long way from completion. The Bucs kicked away their chance at a win – and while Miami was considered to be a hidden gem that could possibly win the AFC before the season started, the Bills made the Dolphins look like the J.V. team – taking them behind the woodshed, 41-14 – in their house. Sure the weather is nice down there, but the football stinks.


Big Names, Big Games – An absolute huge day for some of the best receivers in the NFL, A.J. Green caught 10 passes for 127 yards and two scores in the Cincinnati Bengals win over the Baltimore Ravens  – Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones put up 12 receptions for 164 yards and two scores in his team’s comeback win over the Dallas Cowboys.

It doesn’t necessarily stop there.

Revitalizing a career that seemed to be on the downswing, Larry Fitzgerald has now scored five touchdowns in the past two weeks after tallying two scores on nine receptions against San Francisco on Sunday. Even old-man-extraordinaire Steve Smith put up 13 receptions for 186 yards and two scores in a losing effort against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The list goes on. All said, a total of 12 receivers went for 100-plus yards on Sunday. The interesting dynamic here is that 16 receivers hit the triple-digit plateau in Week 2 — this is clearly an indication that the pass happy NFL we have become accustomed to over the years has taken an even more dramatic turn.


There’s a reason you don’t have to worry about Peyton Manning’s health. The Denver defense is prettay good“We just have ball hawks,” safety David Bruton said, a few minutes after making his third huge defensive play of the month, an athletic pick of Matthew Stafford to clinch the 24-12 win over Detroit. Stafford suffocated against the defensive pressure. Now the Broncos, 3-0 after a killer September start, have a more fluffy October: Minnesota at home, Oakland and Cleveland on the road.


Carolina, Atlanta and Arizona, are all 3-0:  Cornerback Josh Norman saved the Panthers on Sunday with a ridiculous leaping end-zone interception down the stretch. Running back Devonta Freeman saved the Falcons with a 141-yard rushing game – and Tyrann Mathieu did the same for Arizona with a two-pick day. When asked, Norman said the big difference this year from past seasons is “I’m playing.”

The division that sent a 7-8-1 team to the playoffs last season is now the only division in football with two undefeated teams heading into Week 4. By virtue of wins by the Carolina Panthers and Atlanta Falcons, the NFC South has two legitimate playoff contenders.  In fact, the Falcons also lead the NFC East, with their 3 straight wins.

Carolina took on a New Orleans Saints team that was forced to start Luke McCown under center, and still found a way to win. It’s the third consecutive blue-collar performance for a Panthers squad that still has alot of holes on both sides of the ball.  How dangerous could this team be when Keuchly comes back?  Other scary statistic to note about Carolina – The last three teams to go undefeated in December the previous year and then go undefeated in September, all reached the Superbowl:  the 2009 Colts, and the 2013 Broncos and Seahawks – two other Superbowl winners did so as well: the 1983 Raiders and the 2004 Patriots.  Trends are funny things so remember where you read it first if it happens.

In Dallas, the Falcons were also facing a backup quarterback in Brandon Weeden. No one knows how that game would have turned out if both Tony Romo and Dez Bryant were active, but teams can only play who is actually on the field on a given Sunday. In this, Atlanta outscored the Cowboys 14-0 in the final stanza to pull off a third consecutive fourth quarter comeback.

Showing much more poise under first-year head coach Dan Quinn than we have seen in the past, Atlanta is a serious playoff contender in the NFC. And if Julio Jones (12 receptions, 164 yards and two scores on Sunday) has anything to say about it, the Falcons are a legit threat to the Panthers in the much improved NFC South.


The Patriots…2007?  They might already be using the “U” word in New England – as in “undefeated.” New England advanced to a flawless-looking 3-0 Sunday against Jacksonville. More about that later, but as one of the ’07 team leaders, Rodney Harrison, opined Sunday night: “It’s 2007 all over again. Tom Brady’s playing like he’s 29, 30 years old.” Brady is 38, and he threw his 400th and 401st pro touchdown passes against the Jags.  Tom Brady passed for 358 yards and two touchdowns in the Patriots’ 51-17 rout of the Jaguars. Brady’s total of 1,112 passing yards this season is the second-highest after his team’s first three games among players who did not throw an interception during that time. Only Peyton Manning had a higher total (1,143 yards with no interceptions in 2013).

The Patriots had nine possessions against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon. They scored on all nine possessions.  Through three games, Brady is now on pace to tally over 5,900 passing yards with 48 touchdowns and zero picks. He also crossed the 400 touchdown pass plateau for his career — a feat only three other quarterbacks in NFL history have accomplished.

As a team, the Patriots are averaging nearly 40 points and 446 yards of total offense per game.

In the team’s 51-17 win over Jacksonville, Brady received plenty of help from the running game. Making just his second appearance of the season LeGarrette Blount put up 78 yards and three rushing touchdowns. Meanwhile, Dion Lewis added 67 total yards and a score.

If New England is able to get this type of balance moving forward, its going to repeat as AFC champions. There’s NO debate, especially with the way Brady has played through three games.


Peterson breaks off another one

Hope you didn’t sell your Vikings stock after Week 1. Since getting beat up in San Francisco in the opener, Minnesota has done a complete 180 on both sides of the football. Adrian Peterson rushed for 126 yards and two scores during Sunday’s win over the Chargers, giving him 260 yards on the ground and 318 total yards over the last two weeks.  Adrian Peterson’s 43-yard TD run, in the Vikings’ 31-14 win over the Chargers – was A.P.’s 16th TD run of 40 yards or longer, the second most in NFL history. Only Barry Sanders scored more rushing touchdowns of at least 40 yards than Peterson (20).

Teddy Bridgewater struggled again on Sunday, throwing for 121 yards on 24 attempts without a touchdown pass. Minnesota also finished 3-of-9 on third down, as the second-year signal caller continued to throw the ball well short of the first-down marker in these situations. This might be an issue for the Vikings moving forward – meanwhile, Mike Zimmer’s defense knocked around Matthew Stafford and Philip Rivers in consecutive weeks. It’s this type of performance, coupled with struggles in Detroit and Chicago, that leads us to believe Minnesota might be the only team able to contend with the Green Bay Packers in the NFC North. Even if that’s not the case, the Vikings are, at worse, a wild card contender. That was unimaginable after a disastrous 20-3 loss to the San Francisco 49ers in Week 1.


Julio Jones sets league record for receptions

Here’s a good idea. Get the ball to your best player. Mike Smith constantly messed this up, but now Dan Quinn is running the show in the Ol’Dirty South.

Atlanta trailed Dallas 28-17 at the half before the Falcons unleashed Julio Jones.

The Pro Bowl receiver had 137 of his 164 yards in the second half including a 45-yard beauty that ended with Jones diving into the end zone for a critical score – to lead the Falcons to a 39-28 victory at Dallas. Jones’ totals after three games – 34 receptions for 440 yards-are historic. No other player caught more than 31 passes in his team’s first three games of a season, and only three gained more receiving yards through three games than Jones: Jerry Rice in 1989 (449), Chad Johnson in 2007 (442), and Wes Welker in 2011 (458).

The play was the biggest swing in Atlanta winning the game. Julio’s touchdown and the subsequent two-point conversion brought Atlanta within a field goal (trailing 28-25) midway through the third quarter.

The game also featured an apparent scoring battle between Devonta Freeman and Joseph Randle, who both ran for three TDs. It was only the fifth game in NFL history in which opposing players scored three rushing touchdowns each. The most recent players to do so were Roy Helu of Washington and Matt Forte of the Bears in 2013.


Luck rallies Colts with two late TD passes

Andrew Luck will get the credit for throwing two touchdowns in 46 seconds to overcome a double-digit fourth quarter deficit but it was the defense that came up big late.  Safety Dwight Lowery, picked off Marcus Mariota twice. The second interception came with six minutes to play and Indy trailing 27-21. Lowery returned Mariota’s errant pass to the Titans’ 11-yard line. The turnover setup Indy’s go ahead score.

Before the pick, the Colts were likely to choke away any chance for the playoffs. The turnover and great field position made the two-time defending AFC South champions have life and find a way to win a desperate game.

Had Mariota’s attempt, instead fell incomplete, it’s likely Tennessee would have won the game, maintaining possession and a six point lead.

The second of Luck’s 4thQtr TDs, was Andrew’s sixth fourth-quarter game-winning pass, tying Tony Romo for the most in the NFL over the past four seasons.  The 98-yard drive was the Colts’ longest fourth-quarter TD drive since the team moved to Indianapolis in 1984 – rallying the Colts to outlast Tennessee, 35-33. The previous record was 96 yards, on drives led by Mike Pagel (1984) and Peyton Manning (2010).

Indianapolis continues to own the AFC South. The Colts have won 14 straight against division opponents. Of course Sunday’s win over Tennessee was anything but dominating.


Undrafted rookie stars for Seahawks

Things are really getting more pathetic by the week for the Chicago Bears after being shut-out, 26-0, by the Seattle Seahawks.

The Bears, minus Jay Cutler and Alshon Jeffery, couldn’t get get a darn thing going against Seattle on Sunday tallying only 98 rushing and 63 receiving yards. The biggest contributor of course was Matt Forte who registered 74 of those rushing yards.

The last time Chicago was shut out was on December 29, 2002 when the Bears lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 15-0. Quarterback Henry Burris was under center in that game and he completed only seven passes for 78 yards and four interceptions. Cutler’s backup Jimmy Clausen was practically as bad as Burris on Sunday, completing only eight passes for 53 yards. Thankfully, there were no interceptions.

The bottom line is that the Bears need Cutler and Jeffery to return as soon as possible to have any shred of hope at posting their first season win on the board before it’s all too late.


Death, Taxes and Eagles beating the Jets

The Eagles scored all their points in the first half and held on for a 24-17 victory over the Jets. With that win, Philadelphia tied the NFL record for the longest all-time series with a perfect record against any opponent. That mark was set by the Green Bay Packers, who won all 10 of their games against the Brooklyn Dodgers (1931-44).

It remains to be seen whether Bradford is the long-term solution in Philadelphia.  Sam didn’t necessarily come out smelling like roses – of course, what QB has, going up against a stout Jets defense. Philadelphia’s offense tallied just 231 total yards while converting 4-of-15 third-down opportunities.

For his part, Bradford completed 14-of-28 passes for 118 yards with a touchdown and zero picks. His inability to get anything going through the air allowed New York back in the game, as the Eagles put up a total of 65 yards in the second half. Running back DeMarco Murray missed the game with a hamstring injury, which allowed fellow free-agent signing Ryan Mathews to carve up the Jets rush defense to the tune of 108 yards on 25 attempts. Meanwhile, Philadelphia’s defensive front stepped up with the likes of Cedric Thornton, Mychal Kendricks and Kiko Alonso all sidelined.

While that’s fine and dandy, the Eagles are going to need Bradford to perform at a much higher level at quarterback if they plan on competing in a wide open NFC East moving forward this season. His performances in the team’s first three games simply won’t get it done.


Old man Woodson saves the day for Raiders

The Raiders, are usually out of it by now – but now, actually have a winning record as October dawns. The Raiders (2-1) play on the road next week—and they are actually favored to beat Chicago. The quarterback, Derek Carr, is a big reason. “Having a quarterback is everything,” said C-Dub.  The Raiders having Woodson is something too. His last-minute interception, 10 days shy of his 39th birthday, (the fourth-oldest player to intercept a pass in NFL history), ensured the 27-20 win.

The Cleveland Browns are 1-2, and the one win came when Johnny Manziel started in Week 2. Unfortunately for a McCown-led Browns – fans were even heard shouting “John-ny, John-ny”.

McCown, was sacked five times, completed 28 of 49 passes for 341 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Might we see a return of Johnny Football sometime in the near future? That most definitely is a possibility if McCown keeps coughing up costly turnovers.


Apologize to Andy Dalton…right now!
The Bengals are in fabulous shape in the AFC North. At 3-0 after a crushing 28-24 win at 0-3 Baltimore on Sunday, Cincinnati is set up nicely for the fifth playoff appearance in Andy Dalton’s five years.  A 121.0 passer rating would seem to back him up.  Could the Red Rifle be an early MVP candidate? Don’t laugh.
Dalton now has eight touchdown passes to start 2015, including three in Sunday’s win over the Baltimore Ravens. He threw for 383 yards, while his beautifully-lofted touchdown to A.J. Green with just over two minutes left gave the Bengals a 28-24 win. Dalton has now produced three straight games with a passer rating over 100.0, and has an impressive rating of 121.0 on the season. The Bengals are rolling at 3-0, especially with Ben Roethlisberger suffering a knee injury Sunday and the Baltimore Ravens still winless….???

Thirty-six year-old Steve Smith caught 13 passes for 186 yards and two touchdowns in the Ravens’ 28-24 loss to the Bengals. Only two other players caught as many as 13 passes in an NFL game after turning 36 years old: Tim Brown and Tony Gonzalez. The only player with as many receiving yards in a game at age 36 or older was Terrell Owens, with a 222-yard performance for Cincinnati in 2010.


Palmer+Cardinals are impressive

It all started with two interceptions of Colin Kaepernick that were returned for touchdowns in the first quarter. It continued with Carson Palmer tearing apart what is quickly becoming a disastrous San Francisco 49ers secondary. And it culminated in a 47-7 win against the over-matched division rival.

In reality, Arizona looked like a top-notch varsity team going up against a junior varsity squad full of
freshman. That’s how bad it was for the road team in this one.

Palmer may have thrown his first interception of the season, but he consistently found open receivers throughout the game. In the process, the veteran completed 20-of-32 passes for 311 yards with two touchdowns, both of which went to Larry Fitzgerald, who looks like he’s in his twenties again. He has 333 receiving yards and five touchdowns on the books already. Additionally, the Cardinals’ ground game is solid, despite missing their lead rusher Andre Ellington. As for their defense, it is insanely effective in stopping opposing teams from scoring thus far tallying seven interceptions, six sacks, one safety, three pick sixes and one return touchdown.. Arizona has now won 19 of Palmer’s 25 starts; since 1950, no other quarterback in team history won more than 13 of his first 25 starts for the Cardinals. Arizona’s average of 26.4 points with Palmer starting, is higher than that of any other QB after 25 starts for the team during that same period.

Looking like the running back that led the NFL in rushing so many years ago, Chris Johnson added 150 total yards and two scores on 23 touches. Yeah, it was a blowout of epic proportions for Bruce Arians and Co.

Some may argue that Green Bay should still be considered the favorites in the NFC through three weeks, but to me, the Cardinals are definitely the best. After all, they are outscoring their opponents by an average of nearly 26 points per game.


No joy in Mudville

There might not be a worse stat line from a quarterback all season. Kaepernick completed just nine of 19 passes for 67 yards, and threw four interceptions in San Francisco’s loss to the Cardinals. His passer rating was 16.7, the worst from a starting signal caller all season – so far. He did manage to run for a score, but it hardly mattered.

More so than finding a way to actually win football games, San Francisco needs an identity. What is its plan on the offensive side of the ball? Is Colin Kaepernick going to be the long-term solution at quarterback? Does the team have the personnel to run a blitz-heavy package on defense? These three questions will define the 49ers both over the short term and the long term – because the 49ers have now been outscored 90-25 over the last two weeks, and the Green Bay Packers are coming to town in Week 4.

San Francisco has now given up 40-plus points in consecutive games for the first time since Joe Namath guaranteed a Super Bowl victory for his New York Jets in 1969. To put that in perspective, 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula had just turned one. The 65-point differential in the team’s past two games also represents the worst two-game stretch for the franchise since 1963.  Despite still boasting a 1-2 record, San Francisco might quickly find itself in the midst of a long losing streak. It hosts the Green Bay Packers next week before taking on the New York Giants, Baltimore Ravens and Seattle Seahawks. In his first season as head coach, Tomsula could very well be staring a 1-6 start right in the face.  Rock bottom would be Kaepernick getting benched for Blaine Gabbert.  Anyone miss Harbaugh yet?