Bit of a shorter post this week, mainly because I watched a whopping 5 minutes of football last week. But here are a few tidbits that I found interesting last week, as well as a few teams that are surprising this year.
Surprise of the Year #1:
As most fans are aware of, the NFL has placed a “point of emphasis” on several penalties this year, and they have seemed to be entirely too frequent. I was absolutely shocked when I saw the actual difference from this year to last: Games are averaging 17 penalties this year, as opposed to 14 last year. That’s it? 3 penalties a game? I can live with that. But maybe not Percy Harvin, who managed to score 3 TD’s on Monday night only to have all 3 called back by penalties.
Stat of the Week #1:
Despite starting the season 0-2, through 5 games the Colts were leading their division and the #3 seed in the AFC.
Stat of the Week #2:
DeMarco Murray is the league in rushing, #2 in the league is 210 yards behind him
Stat of the Week #3:
Every team in the AFC North is at .500 or above (Bengals, Ravens, Steelers, Browns)
Stat of the Week #4:
Peyton Manning has been in the league for 17 years, and just had his career high in passing yardage
Stat of the Week #5:
The Colts are 8-0 on Thursday night football since 2006, and 7-0 on the road in these games
Stat of the Week #6:
3 teams that have had multiple starting QB’s would be in the playoffs if they started today (Car, Ari, and Buf)
Stat of the Week #7:
J.J Watt has a receiving TD, INT return, and Fumble Return for a TD this season through 6 games. He has equaled or outscored players such as Jamaal Charles, Jimmy Graham, Alfred Morris, Frank Gore, A.J Green, and LeSean McCoy.
Stat of the Week #8:
Very interesting stat that CBS brought up last night, comparing Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck. In Manning’s first 37 games, he was 19-18 (or a .513 winning percentage). I wondered aloud whether a team would stick with a QB with that same winning percentage. And if they didn’t, they would be missing out on the best QB of all time. Let’s make a quick list and compare those to Peyton: Vince Young through 38 games was 26-13 (.667). Mark Sanchez was 22-15 (.594). I’ve heard the same thing about Tom Landry, that he started off extremely slow but then became one of the best football minds in the game. But there’s not much patience in today’s league.
If the playoffs were to start today:
San Diego, Arizona, and Cincinnati would all have 1st round byes
For the Record:
We’re through Week 5, and there are no unbeaten teams left
I feel like I talk about some Peyton Manning milestone nearly every week. But congrats on your 500th TD pass. We were in Denver ironically for the occasion, and had to run inside due to cheering to witness the occasion (well, the replay at least). He’s only 6 away from beating Favre’s record, so you can expect another similar post in a couple weeks, or possibly next week…
Surprise of the Year #2:
Bill Belichick and Tom Brady are notorious for rarely, if ever, losing back to back games. Well they got absolutely trounced on national TV by the Chiefs 2 weeks ago, and then had an uphill battle going against one of the last undefeated teams. Not only did they manage to sneak a win, but they put on a trouncing of their own, winning 43-17. They are indeed a confusing team this year.
Quick Hits: Surprises
- The Giants started off the season 0-2 (not surprising), but have since won 3 straight games over decent teams.
- After limping into the playoffs last season, the Chargers are the #1 seed in the AFC, with only a 1 point loss in Week 1 and a 4 game winning streak. They’re even ahead of the Broncos in their divison!
- The Cowboys have had a similar run, losing their first game and going on a 4 game winning streak. This was the season Jason Garrett had to win, and it’s looking like a 4th straight season of 8-8 won’t happen unless there’s an epic collapse.
Games of the Week:
Wow, great slate of games this week!
Bills vs New England: Fight for the division lead
Lions vs Vikings: Healthy Bridgewater at home against a slightly struggling Lions team
Panthers vs Bengals: Great defensive battle with strong offenses behind them.
Steelers vs Browns (3 pt game Week 1): Could be a cool rematch with the Browns taking control
Cowboys vs Seahawks: Cowboys have a legitimate shot at winning, despite playing in Seattle
Giants vs Eagles: Huge division matchup between teams with winning records
Reader Comment of the Week:
FFMQB (this time Father of Friday Morning Quarterback) made a very interesting comparison this past week in response to my Rant #2. Hope Solo, the U.S Women’s soccer goalie, was arrested on June 21st for domestic violence charges. She hit both her nephew and her sister, and there is 911 audio of part of the incident. Yet she’s still taking the field. Bit of a double standard. Even previous Bears GM Jerry Angelo came out and said that teams/NFL looked the other way on “hundreds and hundreds” of incidents in the past.