Week 6 saw some teams get themselves back into the race of their respective divisions, with impressive performances by the Steelers and Texans. The defending Super Bowl champs are looking like they may start taking control back of the NFC East. Oh, and the New England Patriots and Tom Brady? Well, they went up against one the best offences in the NFL and proved that Brady and the Pats are still the measuring stick of the league.
Let’s get started!
Philadelphia 34-13 NY Giants
With the defending Super Bowl Champion Eagles struggling to start the year with a 2-3 record, the weight put on a match-up with the division rival Giants was astronomical. They couldn’t afford to drop to 2-4 with the Giants right behind them in the division. The NFC East has been wide-open through five weeks and the winner of the game would cover exceptional ground in the race.
Philadelphia would score first on the road. Kamu Grugier-Hill picked off Eli Manning on the Giants first drive of the game. Three plays later, Carson Wentz would find Alshon Jeffery for the 13-yard touchdown pass and the 7-0 lead.
Following a Giants field goal, the Eagles would add another TD after a good punt return by DeAndre Carter gave them possession at the Giant’s 44-yard line. Six plays later Corey Clement would take the ball in from one yard out for the 14-3 lead.
Rookie sensation Saquon Barkley gave his best Barry Sanders impersonation bouncing off, and hurdling over defenders left and right in the first half. The Giants, however, were only able to put up another field goal.
Carson Wentz, on the other hand, found ways to get into the end zone. After a Giants field goal, Wentz hit Nelson Agholor for a 58-yard gain to the New York 10-yard line. On the next play, Wentz found Zach Ertz for the TD and 21-6 lead. The Eagles would add a field goal before the end of the half for the 24-6 halftime score.
Philadelphia added to their lead in the second half with a third quarter TD. They went on a 12-play drive to open the half capping it all off with a 1-yard TD pass from Wentz to Jeffery for the 31-6 lead. The Giants, however, would finally get into the end zone with a massive 50-yard TD run by Saquon Barkley, trimming the Eagles lead down to 31-13.
The Eagles continued to dominate as they shut out the Giants for the remainder of the game on their way to a 34-13 victory. This game was one-sided almost from the beginning with Philadelphia dominating New York with a smothering defence. They held the Giants to just 17 first downs with a 3rd down efficiency of 4/14 while piling up 4 sacks.
New York did put up 147 rushing yards, but their only real offence came from Saquon Barkley who continues to shine both on the ground and through the air. Philly’s offence which has struggled a bit in comparison to last year was able to make the big plays when needed and hope that this game can be a springboard for them to get back on track.
PHI: C.Wentz: 26/36 279YDs 3TDs W.Smallwood: 18CAR 51YDs N.Agholor: 3CAT 91YDs
NYG: E.Manning: 24/43 281YDs 1INT S.Barkley: 13CAR 130YDs 1TD 9CAT 99YDs
Pittsburgh 28-21 Cincinnati
A division matchup between the Bengals and Steelers kicked off with some standings implications at hand. Cincinnati was sitting atop the AFC North with a 4-1 record while the Steelers found themselves at the bottom at 2-2-1. However, a win for Pittsburgh would them right back into contention for the division title.
Could they finally over-come the absence of Le’Veon Bell and put together an offence that could compete with the high-powered one that Andy Dalton and AJ Green have put together?
The Bengals would strike first with an 11-play 54-yard drive ending in seven points. After finding AJ Green for a 19-yard gain, Dalton would then hit Tyler Boyd along the goal line who made a diving catch for the 2-yard TD and 7-0 lead.
Pittsburgh would answer with a touchdown drive of their own. It took 10 plays for Ben Roethlisberger and company to move 85 yards. The drive was led by James Conner who ran for a total of 32 yards on the drive. It all ended in a 1-yard TD run by Conner for the 7-7 tie.
The Steelers added another seven points before the half, with a minute left in the second quarter. Roethlisberger would hit JuJu Smith-Schuster on a 29-yard pass, where the receiver came up with an acrobatic catch over the defender while both parties fought for the ball. After review it was determined Smith-Schuster made the catch, giving the Steelers possession at the 1-yard line. James Conner took it the rest of the way for the TD and the 14-7 lead.
Cincinnati responded quickly, with a 45-yard kick return by Alex Erickson to the Cincinnati 49-yard line. Five plays later Dalton drove his offence down the field ending the drive with a 14-yard TD pass to Tyler Boyd in the corner of the end zone for his second score of the game and the 14-14 tie at the half.
The Bengals would get great field position to open the second half with Erickson returning the kickoff to the 49-yard line once again. The drive, however, would result in a three-and-out. The Steelers then took possession and James Conner took off for a 25-yard run down to the 1-yard line. It looked like Conner rolled into the end zone on the tackle but was ruled down. Mike Tomlin opted not to challenge the play and Pittsburgh would be stopped on three straight plays forcing them to settle for the field goal and 17-14 lead.
Pittsburgh then added another three points after Roethlisberger hit Antonio Brown for a huge 48-yard gain. Cincinnati would counter those three points with a touchdown. Dalton took the team down the field for 61 yards before Joe Mixon ran it in from 4 yards out for the narrow 21-20 lead.
With just over a minute left in the game, Roethlisberger showed some vintage Big Ben by taking the team all the way down the field for 72 yards in 7 plays. He would hit Antonio Brown on a short slant, and Brown took off for the 31-yard TD giving the Steelers the 28-21 lead with five seconds left.
Dalton would throw up the Hail Mary but it would be incomplete resulting in the Steelers victory. Pittsburgh blew the AFC North wide open with this impressive victory. For a team that looked lost at times over the first five weeks they and specifically their offence looked like a solid unit in this one. They came together and made plays when needed to pull out the last second come-from-behind win.
PIT: Roethlisberger: 32/46 369YDs 1TD J.Conner: 19CAR 111YDs 2TDs J.Smith-Shuster: 7CAT 111YDs A.Brown: 5CAT 105YDs 1TD
CIN: A.Dalton: 26/42 229YDs 2TDs J.Mixon: 11CAR 64YDs 1TD A.Green: 7CAT 85YDs
Buffalo 10-13 Houston
This battle between two AFC teams with records of 2-3 featured teams coming off big wins in Week 5. The Texans were coming off an exciting OT win over the Cowboys last Sunday night while the Bills snuck out a one-point victory over the Titans. Both teams sat in third place in their respective divisions but could make some headway with a win in this one.
Houston would take advantage of a muffed punt by the Bills giving them possession at the Buffalo 29-yard line. Five plays later DeShaun Watson would find DeAndre Hopkins at the goal line for the 13-yard TD pass and a 7-0 lead.
The Texans would add a field goal taking a 10-0 lead into halftime. DeShaun Watson opened the second half having his pass tipped up into the air and intercepted by Lorenzo Alexander. Luckily for Watson and the Texans, the turnover only resulted in a field goal and the 10-3 score.
Later in the quarter, Josh Allen would take a hit from Jadeveon Clowney and come up favouring his right arm. He would leave the game, being replaced by Nathan Peterman. The ensuing drive would stall and Stephen Haushka kicked a 52-yarder for the 10-6 score.
The Bills then took possession back after sacking Watson on the following drive. The hit would force a fumble which was recovered by the Bills in Texans’ territory. Five plays later Peterman would find Zay Jones for the 16-yard TD and 13-10 lead.
On 2nd and 15, Watson would hit DeAndre Hopkins for a 24-yard gain. Watson then threw a deep ball to Will Fuller in the end zone, which fell incomplete. But Buffalo was called for pass interference placing the ball at the 1-yard line.
Houston would be stopped on three straight plays forcing them to settle for the field goal and the 13-13 tie with 1:34 left in the game. On the ensuing drive, Peterman was picked off by Jonathan Joseph who took it back 28 yards for the pick-six and the 20-13 lead.
Peterman would then be picked off by Kareem Jackson with 25 seconds left sealing the win for the Texans. Both teams played a rough game, but the Texans got lucky coming out with the win. Watson was sacked seven times and threw two interceptions while the team fumbled the ball three times.
Both teams totalled just over 200 yards of total offence, and if not for Nathan Peterman coming into the game for the Bills the outcome may have been different. This puts the Texans in contention with the top teams in the AFC South, all at 3-3.
HOU: D.Watson: 15/25 177YDs 1TD 2INTs D.Hopkins: 5CAT 63YDs 1TD
BUF: J.Allen: 10/17 84YDs N.Peterman: 6/12 61YDs 1TD 2INTs L.McCoy: 16CAR 73YDs
**J.Allen leaves with elbow injury
LA Rams 23-20 Denver
The Rams have been one of the top teams in the league with a high-firing offence and a stifling defence. They were one of two remaining undefeated teams at 5-0 coming into Denver. The Broncos were sitting in third place in the AFC West at 2-3 but have shown some flash through five weeks of the season.
The Denver defence isn’t what it once was but it still has some pieces capable of getting to the quarterback so it would be interesting to see if they could throw Jared Goff off his game.
The Rams would strike first after a 44-yard pass from Goff to Brandin Cooks. LA would add a 26-yard Cairo Santos field goal for the 3-0 lead. The Rams then marched back down the field with a big run by Todd Gurley and a 28-yard pass to Robert Woods. Santos kicked another field goal for the 6-0 lead.
Case Keenum would then hit Emmanuel Sanders for what looked like a 43-yard TD. After review, it was determined he was down at the 1-yard line. To make things worse for the Broncos, Sanders was called for unsportsmanlike conduct for a TD celebration, which pushed the ball back to the 16-yard line.
LA would stop the Broncos on three plays forcing the Brandon McManus field goal and a 6-3 score. The Rams would then get the ball back into the end zone lead by Todd Gurley. Gurley ran for 45 yards on the drive including a 10-yard run into the end zone for the 13-3 lead which was carried into the half.
The Rams looked to put this one away a little over halfway through the third quarter. On an 8-play 62-yard drive, Gurley would score on the 1-yard TD run giving the Rams the 20-3 lead.
But don’t count the Broncos out just yet. After Keenum threw an interception to John Johnson, Goff would also be picked off by Darian Stewart giving Denver the ball at the LA 22-yard line. On the ensuing drive, Keenum would hit Sanders for the 22-yard TD and the 20-10 score with 1:34 left in the third quarter. The Rams would then miss a 47-yard field goal attempt on their following drive.
Keenum cut the lead down to just a touchdown after hitting Courtland Sutton for a 41-yard gain down the sideline, the Broncos would add a field goal for the 20-13 score.
The Rams added a field goal of their own for the 23-13 lead with just over three minutes left. And it’s a good thing they did. The Broncos would go on a 9-play 52-yard drive aided by some penalties. Keenum would find Demaryius Thomas who made a beautiful toe-tapping TD grab in the back of the end zone for the 23-20 score.
Denver failed to convert the onside kick allowing LA to run the clock out and win the game by three points. The Rams dominated through most of the game putting up 444 yards of offence and out-rushing the Broncos 270 yards to 60. But Denver came back late and almost found a way to win this game. Between the close game with the Seahawks and this one, the Rams defence has definitely shown some holes despite the team improving to 6-0 on the year.
LA: J.Goff: 14/28 201YDs 1INT T.Gurley: 28CAR 208YDs 2TDs R.Woods: 7CAT 109YDs
DEN: C.Keenum: 25/41 322YDs 2TDs 1INT E.Sanders: 7CAT 115YDs
Kansas City 40-43 New England
Not much of an introduction needed for this game. This was the most anticipated game of the week with the undefeated 5-0 Kansas City Chiefs travelling to Foxboro for a match with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offence has been the best of the league up to this point, lighting it up left and right. They would come in to face the greatest QB of all time and a Pats defence that has been relatively great this year.
Both teams would feel each other out through much of the first quarter while exchanging field goals for the 3-3 score. On the Chiefs drive following a Stephen Gostkowski field goal, Patrick Mahomes threw one over the middle only to have it picked off by Dont’a Hightower who took it to the 1-yard line.
On the Pats first offensive play after the interception, Sony Michel took it the rest of the way for the 10-3 lead. The Chiefs would answer with a five-play drive that ended in a 43-yard field goal from Harrison Butker and the 10-6 score.
Brady and the Pats marched down the field for 75 yards in 10 plays. With Kansas City only sending three to rush Brady, he had enough time to find Julian Edelman for the 17-yard TD and 17-6 score.
The Chiefs would add a field goal while the Pats went on a 7-play 37-yard drive ending in a Sony Michel TD run and the 24-9 halftime score. Kansas City jumped back into the game on the opening drive of the second half. On a 3rd and 2 play, Mahomes would roll out to his right and rifle a bomb to Kareem Hunt down the sideline for the 67-yard TD pass and the 24-16 score.
After both teams exchanged field goals Tom Brady would be sacked by Reggie Ragland who forced a fumble on the hit. Allen Bailey came up with the recovery giving the Chiefs the ball at the New England 29-yard line.
Four plays later Mahomes hit Tyreek Hill for the 14-yard TD over the middle cutting the Patriots lead down to one point and the 27-26 score. New England would add another field goal for the 30-26 lead. But on the following kickoff, Tremon Smith took it 97 yards to the New England 3-yard line, just being stopped before the end zone.
Three plays later Mahomes would float one out to Tyreek Hill for the TD and the 33-30 lead. It wouldn’t last long however with New England marching back down the field on their next drive. They would move 75 yards in seven plays, with 70 of them coming through the air.
After finding Chris Hogan for a 19-yard gain, Brady would run the ball in himself from four yards out for his 19th career rushing TD and the 37-33 lead with five minutes left. On the play rookie linebacker Breeland Speaks looked to have Brady wrapped up for the sack but let go in an attempt to avoid a roughing the passer penalty.
After the Pats forced a three-and-out they would take possession back and add a field goal for the 40-33 lead with three minutes left in the game. But just hold on! On the following drive, Kansas City tied the game. Mahomes would find Hill again, and on what was a blown coverage in the Pats secondary, Hill took it 75 yards for the TD, tying the game at 40-40.
But the GOAT is the GOAT for a reason. Brady would hit Rob Gronkowski for a 39-yard gain setting up Stephen Gostkowski for the 28-yard field goal which he would kick right down the middle for the 43-40 win.
The Patriots continue to be the bar that is set around the league for everyone else to measure up to. Brady went toe to toe with the hottest QB in the league right now and handed Kansas City their first loss of the season in a shootout. This game was everything everyone could have hoped for and will possibly be a taste of a future AFC Championship game.
NE: T.Brady: 24/35 340YDs 1TD S.Michel: 24CAR 106YDs 2TDs R.Gronkowski: 3CAT 97YDs
KC: P.Mahomes: 23/36 352YDs 4TDs 2INTs K.Hunt: 10CAR 80YDs 5CAT 105YDs 1TD T.Hill: 7CAT 142YDs 3TDs
**T.Brady becomes first QB with 200 wins
Tampa Bay 29-34 Atlanta
M.Ryan: 31/41 354YDs 3TDs J.Jones: 10CAT 143YDs/J.Winston: 30/41 395YDs 4TDs 2INTs P.Barber: 13CAR 82YDs A.Humphries: 3CAT 82YDs
LA Chargers 38-14 Cleveland
P.Rivers: 11/20 207YDs 2TDs 1INT M.Gordon: 18CAR 132YDs 3TDs T.Williams: 3CAT 118YDs 2TDs/B.Mayfield: 22/46 238YDs 1TD 2INT D.Ratley:6CAT 82YDs
Chicago 28-31-OT Miami
B.Osweiler: 28/44 380YDs 3TDs 2INTs F.Gore: 15CAR 101YDs A.Wilson: 6CAT 155YDs 2TDs/M.Trubisky: 22/31 316YDs 3TDs 1INT T.Gabriel: 5CAT 110YDs T.Cohen: 7CAT 90YDs 5CAR 31YDs 1TD
**R.Tannehill unhealthy scratch, B.Osweiler gets start
Arizona 17-27 Minnesota
K.Cousins: 24/34 233YDs 1TD 1INT L.Murray: 24CAR 155YDs 1TD A.Thielen: 11CAT 123YDs 1TD/J.Rosen: 21/31 240YDs 1INT C.Kirk: 6CAT 77YDs
Indianapolis 34-42 NY Jets
S.Darnold: 24/30 280YDs 2TDs 1INT J.Kearse: 9CAT 94YDs/A.Luck: 23/43 301YDs 4TDs 3INTs M.Mack: 12CAR 89YDs
Seattle 27-3 Oakland
R.Wilson: 17/23 222YDs 3TDs 1INT D.Baldwin: 6CAT 91YDs F.Clark: 2.5scks 2FF/D.Carr: 23/31 142YDs M.Lynch: 13CAR 45YDs
**From England **A.Cooper leaves with head injury **D.Carr injures shoulder, stays in game
Carolina 17-23 Washington
A.Smith: 21/36 163YDs 2TDs A.Peterson: 17CAR 97YDs /C.Newton: 27/40 275YDs 2TDs 1INT D.Funchess: 5CAT 74YDs 1TD
Jacksonville 7-40 Dallas
D.Prescott: 17/27 183YDs 2TDs 11CAR 82YDs 1TD E.Elliott: 24CAR 106YDs 1TD C.Beasley: 9CAT 101Yds 2TDs/B.Bortles: 15/26 149YDs 1TD 1INT T.Yeldon: 8CAR 41YDs
Baltimore 21-0 Tennessee
J.Flacco: 25/37 238YDs 1TD 1INT A.Collins: 19CAR 54YDs M.Crabtree: 6CAT 93YDs 1TD/M.Mariota: 10/15 117YDs
**BAL totals 11 sacks
San Francisco 30-33 Green Bay
A.Rodgers: 25/46 425YDs 2TDs D.Adams: 10CAT 132YDs 2TDs J.Graham: 5CAT 103YDs M.Valdes-Scantling: 3CAT 103YDs/C.Beathard: 16/23 245YDs 2TDs 1INT R.Mostert: 12CAR 87YDs M.Goodwin: 4CAT 126YDs 2TDs
BYE: Detroit, New Orleans
1.Chiefs (5-1) 2.Chargers (4-2) 3.Broncos (2-4) 4.Raiders (1-5)
1.Patriots (4-2) 2. Dolphins (4-2) 3.Jets (3-3) 4.Bills (2-4)
1. Titans (3-3) 2.Jaguars (3-3) 3.Texans (3-3) 4.Colts (1-5)
1.Bengals (4-2) 2.Ravens (4-2) 3.Steelers (3-2-1) 4.Browns (2-3-1)
1.Rams (6-0) 2.Seahawks (3-3) 3.49ers (1-5) 4.Cardinals (1-5)
1.Washington (3-2) 2.Eagles (3-3) 3.Cowboys (3-3) 4.Giants (1-5)
1.Saints (4-1) 2.Panthers (3-2) 3.Buccaners (2-3) 4.Falcons (2-4)
1.Bears (3-2) 2.Vikings (3-2-1) 3.Packers (3-2-1) 4.Lions (2-3)