Every week, we’ll go through some of the best and worst of the notable Sunday performances and plays. Here they are for Week 10.
Offensive Player of the Week: Russell Wilson, Seahawks
After weeks of languishing in mediocrity, Seattle’s offense opened up against the Patriots at Foxborough on Sunday night and helped the team secure one of the biggest wins in the NFL this year. The reason for that outburst was Russell Wilson, who had his best game of the season.
Wilson completed 25 of 37 passes (67.6 percent) for 348 yards and three touchdowns (all to Doug Baldwin). His passer rating of 124.6 and Total QBR of 89.7 were excellent and he led key drives when the Seahawks needed them. The 31-24 victory moved the Seahawks to 6-2-1 and has them looking like the top challengers to the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC.
Wilson’s rebirth this week came at exactly the right time. The schedule opens up for Seattle over the next few weeks as the team hosts Philadelphia, travels to Tampa Bay, then welcomes Carolina to Century Link Field before taking on the Packers at Lambeau Field. If the Seahawks can rack up a few wins they could lock up the NFC West and challenge for home-field advantage in the postseason.
Defensive Player of the Week: Eric Berry, Chiefs
Berry made a huge, game-changing play this week when he intercepted an errant Cam Newton pass in the fourth quarter and returned it 42 yards for a touchdown. That score and the ensuing two-point conversion cut the Chiefs’ deficit from 17-6 to 17-14. They eventually topped Carolina 20-17.
No play this week caused a bigger momentum swing. Berry finished the week with nine tackles, two passes deflections and that all-important pick-six. The 27-year-old safety appears back to his All-Pro form.
Most Impressive Rookie of the Week: Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys
Elliott is currently my leading contender for MVP, as the Cowboys are 8-1 and have relied heavily on him to get there. This week he put Dallas over the top in the game of the year so far against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Elliott rushed for 114 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries (5.4 yards per carry) and added 95 yards and another score on two catches. His 209 total yards and three scores were the difference for the Cowboys as they topped Pittsburgh 35-30.
So far on the season Elliott has 1,005 rushing yards and nine scores on 198 carries (5.1 ypc) and another 250 yards and a touchdown on 18 receptions. He has gone over 100 yards five times in nine games this year, has topped 90 twice and had 83 in another game. The kid is just so good, so consistent and so versatile. It’s really incredible what he’s done as a rookie.
Hottest Seat of the Week: Mike McCarthy, Packers
After three-straight losses and a 4-5 record after 10 weeks, Packers fans are demanding change. McCarthy has been Green Bay’s head coach since 2006 and has been wildly successful. He has won six NFC North titles and a Super Bowl in 2010. But despite a ton of talent and an elite quarterback, the Packers have fallen below expectations over the past few years.
The 2016 season has been a disaster in Green Bay and three losses in a row has the natives restless. Losing on the road to the Falcons 33-32 can be understood, but falling to the Colts at home (31-26) and then the Titans (47-25) in consecutive weeks is unacceptable.
After a long, successful stint under McCarthy the Packers may just need a new voice at the top. This is his 11th season in charge and things have clearly gotten stale.
Randy Fasani Award: Philip Rivers, Chargers
It was a really bad week for Rivers. He was under constant pressure but that isn’t an excuse for being so off with so many throws. He completed just 23 of 44 passes (52.3 percent) and while he did throw for 326 yards and three touchdowns, he also had four interceptions. One of those errant tosses was a pick-six that won the game for Miami late in the fourth quarter.
The Chargers fell to the Dolphins 31-24 and Rivers would be the first person to tell you he was the reason why. His quarterback rating of 61.4 and Total QBR of 42.4 fell well below his standards. The Bolts are currently 4-6 and appear headed to yet another disappointing record. For the 34-year-old Rivers it might be time to demand some changes from the team. He can’t continue getting beaten up every week behind a horrendous offensive line.
*The Randy Fasani Award is given weekly to the NFL quarterback who turns in the worst performance. Fasani is the award’s namesake because he had one career start and turned in a 0.0 passer rating. That makes him the worst starting quarterback in NFL history.
Cam Newton Outfit of the Week:
This one wasn’t as bad as we’ve usually seen. This is sort of late-70s casual, but I really want Jason Whitlock to start weighing in on Cam’s hat and outfit choices. If only I knew someone who worked closely with Whitlock…
Mike McCoy Update:
Let’s just say I hope the above image is a shot of him running out of the stadium and my life forever. He’s still awful. Fire him please.
Bill Belichick Is Confused GIF of the Week:
You only make this face when you have zero idea what Pete Carroll is thinking going for two after a touchdown put his team up by seven.
Larry Fitzgerald Is Not Human, Exhibit No. 5,328:
No human could survive landing on its neck like that, let alone go back into the game. Just more evidence Fitzgerald is a cyborg. Like Maeve Millay, he’s clearly impervious to pain now.
Cam Newton Celebration of the Week:
That’s the exact celebration I do whenever I get Final Jeopardy right.
Best Play of the Week: Jameis Winston, Buccaneers
How on Earth…? Chicago’s entire defense should just retire after that play.
Worst Play of the Week: Blake Bortles, Jaguars
With apologies to the Butt Fumble, I think that may be the worst play of the century.
TFW you realize the 2016 election is finally over:
TFW you find out who won: