I know I went on about Deshaun Watson this week, but for a rookie, he’s definitely killing it: Nine touchdown passes in the last two weeks. Yes, the five against the Chiefs were in defeat, and he was throwing to get them back in the game, but it’s still five TD passes against the NFL’s lone unbeaten team. Watson has 12 TDs in 4.5 games, and two on the ground. Hand him the Rookie of the Year award. Now.
What has happened to Amari Cooper? You could chalk it up to EJ Manuel replacing the injured Derek Carr, but in reality, Cooper’s struggles have been a season-long thing. After an 83-catch, 1,153-yard sophomore season, he’s been ineffective this season: his last three games, he’s got 1 catch for six yards; two catches for nine yards, and one catch for eight yards. He was only targeted twice in a 30-17 loss to the Ravens.
In a game in which they were thoroughly outplayed in every aspect, the Jets managed to beat the Browns because Cleveland had three turnovers AND were inside the New York 10-yard line three times and managed to come away with zero points. The Browns had more first downs (22-14), more yards (419-212), more yards per play (6.0 to 4.2), but all that mattered was amazing ineptitude near the end zone: Isaiah Crowell fumbled an option pitch inside at the 7; Deshone Kizer threw an interception from the 4-yard line; and Crowell was stuffed on 4th down at the 4-yard line.
Last week against the Eagles offensive line, San Diego defensive linemen Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram were complete non-factors. They had zero sacks. They rebounded strong against the laughable Giants offensive line, one of the worst in the league: Two sacks apiece and looking like the best pass-rushing combo in the league. They also had three tackles for loss.
Why did Jared Goff throw 47 times against the 26th-ranked rush defense in the NFL, while Todd Gurley only had 14 carries? Goff is a promising QB, but the Rams are not winning games in which he’s throwing that many times. Amazingly, the Rams were a Cooper Kupp dropped TD pass from shocking the Seahawks. Goff was intercepted twice and fumbled once. The Rams blew a chance to open a lead in the NFC West, but now they’re tied with Seattle at 3-2.
Why did Ben Roethlisberger throw 55 times against the 32nd ranked rush defense in the NFL, while Le’Veon Bell only had 15 carries? Roethlisberger had one of the worst games of his career – five interceptions, two were returned for TDs – and the Steelers were embarrassed at home, 30-9. The Steelers won handily while Blake Bortles completed just eight passes for 95 yards.
Cam Newton played poorly through the first three games, but has rebounded strong in his last two games, which came on the road. He lit up Detroit for 355 yards passing and three touchdowns a week after throwing for 316 and three touchdowns while completing 77% of his passes. For a guy who has struggled for much of his career to hit 60% of his passes, October is off to a great start for Newton. It’s the first time he’s had back-to-back 300-yard games for the first time since the first two games of his rookie year.