Week 3 has come and gone and boy were there some surprises. It was fun, it was chaotic, and we’re going to tell you the 5 things we learned from the latest week of NFL football.
5. Baker Mayfield is the new King of Cleveland.
Forget Sam the Savior, King Baker is the real deal, and probably the only person that can take the Rookie of the Year away from Saquon Barkley. Baker entered the game late in the 2nd quarter on Thursday night against the Jets, and conducted a historic comeback for the city of Cleveland. Going 17-23 for 201 yards and posting a 100.1 QBR, Baker is the sole reason the Cleveland Browns are sitting at a record of 1-1-1. The bigger question is how is he going to do moving forward. On Monday, coach Hue Jackson announced that Baker will be starting this coming Sunday on the road in Oakland. Will Baker be a one-hit wonder, or do the Browns finally have their man under center?
4. The NFC South might be the best division in the league.
The Saints, Falcons, Panthers, and Bucs (!!!) all look like teams that can easily contend with the likes of the Rams, Vikings, and Eagles for the NFC crown. At the rate that these teams are playing, it’s a shame one of them isn’t going to make the playoffs. The Saints are 2-1, with one of the most prolific offenses in the league today; however, their defense is horrible, ranking literally dead last in points against. But when you have weapons like Drew Brees, Michael Thomas (who is on pace to set the single-season receptions record), and Alvin Kamara at your disposal, you can’t be too worried about defense. The Panthers are sitting at 2-1, and lead the league in rush yards, averaging 166 per game. Christian McCaffrey has found his stride in this offense, Cam Newton is clicking on all cylinders, and they boast a top 15 defense, even without Thomas Davis. Atlanta is in last place in the division, at 1-2; however, they had the defending Super Bowl champions beat in week 1, and just this past week lost a thriller to New Orleans in overtime. The big problem with Atlanta is the injury has bitten them hard. Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen are both out for the year, and Devonta Freeman has been sidelined with a bruised knee. But people like Calvin Ridley (who caught 3 touchdowns last week, including a 75 yarder) have stepped up big time in their absence. If Atlanta can ever get healthy, that offense could be lethal. Then there’s Tampa Bay. The Bucs, who are sitting at 2-1, were projected to be one of the worst teams in the league this year. Their starting quarterback, Jameis Winston, is serving a 3 game suspension, and they opened up with games against New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh, easily 0-3. Enter Ryan Fitzpatrick. The journeymen out of Harvard is averaging 400 yard per game passing, first in the league. The team is averagin 34 points per game, 3rd in the league. This is truly magical. However, Jameis is coming back, and coach Dirk Koetter has a decision on his hands. Does he go with the franchise QB in Winston, or does he let the FitzMagic run it’s course?
3. Jimmy GQ is out for the year.
On a more somber note, our favorite off-season quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo is out for the year after tearing his ACL in the game against the Chiefs. Now, this is rough for 49ers fans, who thought they might have a shot at a Wild Card berth, but now, it’s back to better luck next year. CJ Beathard is your fearless leader now, Niners fans, and oh yeah, Richard Sherman is also out for multiple weeks with a leg injury. Not a fun time playing Mahomes-Mania, who by the way, also won the game taking his Chiefs to 3-0. We’re not jumping to conclusions or anything, but…#MahomesForMVP.
2. The LA Rams may just go 16-0.
We knew coming into this season that the Rams were going to be good. They were good last year, then went and brought in Aqib Talib, Marcus Peters, and Ndamukong Suh to go alongside Aaron Donald on the defensive side of the ball, and brought in Brandin Cooks on offense. Now, this team is lethal. They’re 3-0, have scored over 30 points in every game, and have allowed over 15 just once. That’s good. With Philadelphia looking to have a Super Bowl hangover, and the Vikings losing to the Bills, the NFC looks to be the Rams’ for the taking.
1. It’s officially time to panic in New England.
Miami is 3-0. Buffalo just beat the Vikings 27-6 with a Rookie QB in Josh Allen, and the Jets have Sam the Savior. New England is 1-2, Rob Gronkowski just revealed that he threatened to retire in the offseason, Tom Brady actually is playing like he’s 41, and the defense is ranked in the bottom half of the league. Oh, and they just lost to the Lions, 26-10, who lost to Sam Darnold and the Jets, who just lost to the Cleveland Browns, so simple math says Browns>Patriots. But really, New England is in trouble. There’s no playmakers on offense, aside from Brady and Gronk. Gronk actually looks like he’s lost some of his power and is struggling to hold on to balls. Brady has nobody to throw the ball to, and is struggling to get rid of it in time. Julian Edelman is still suspended for PED use, and Josh Gordon seems to be the saving grace. This may be the end of the Patriots dynasty. (But hey, Le’Veon Bell is available.)