@Bengals_fan_21 kaaya is a franchise qb something the jets need there wont be a better qb coming out not even close hes a perfect pro style qb and if you watch any of his game tape hes a safer pick then any other player coming out
One team had everything to play for, trailing its divisional leader by just one game. The other, well out of the playoff race, was taking part in a meaningless contest. By the way these teams performed, you'd think the Lions were the former, but that was not the case. Detroit absolutely dominated this game, from start to finish. It was better on both sides of the ball, while Jim Caldwell and his staff coached circles around Chip Kelly, who will undoubtedly call his real-estate agent this weekend and ask for available homes in either Southern California or Louisiana.
There were reports heading into this contest that Kelly lost the locker room, and the Eagles certainly played as if that were the case. They looked completely lost on defense, blowing tons of coverages and missing countless tackles. The defensive scheme was horrible as well. Coordinator Billy Davis had his cornerbacks play well off the Detroit receivers, and he also made the mistake of having rookie Eric Rowe, who was on the field in place of an injured Nolan Carroll, cover Calvin Johnson one-on-one with no safety help. Rowe, consequently, was beaten like a drum, yet Davis made no adjustments.
Kelly's offense, meanwhile, continued to be a mess. His decision to bring back Mark Sanchez this past offseason was a head-scratcher at the time, especially when he traded for the injury-prone Sam Bradford. It was obvious that Sanchez would start a handful of games this season, and based on what Kelly saw at the end of the 2014 season, I don't know why he would let that happen. Sanchez is even worse than he was last year, thanks to a depleted arsenal. Jeremy Maclin, LeSean McCoy and some of the offensive linemen are no longer around. Thus, it shouldn't be a surprise that Sanchez is barely having any success behind a poor offensive line while throwing to bums like Riley Cooper, Josh Huff and Miles Austin. It's astonishing that Austin is even on an NFL roster; let alone serving as a prominent player in an offense. That's how bad Kelly's mismanagement has been.
Sanchez's final numbers don't look too bad - 19-of-27, 199 yards, two touchdowns and a lost fumble - but most of his yardage and one of his scores came late in the game when the Lions stopped trying. For a better barometer of how Sanchez performed, take a look at his first-half numbers, when he was 8-of-14 for 106 yards and a touchdown.
It's hard to just blame Sanchez for this, however. He wasn't terrible, but he just wasn't good enough to compensate for the ineptitude of the other players. It didn't help that stud left tackle Jason Peters was helped off the field during the opening drive. His absence was felt instantly, as Lane Johnson was flagged for a face mask, forcing a long field goal that doinked off the upright. Johnson also allowed a blind-side sack and fumble in the third quarter.
Sanchez's leading receiver was Jordan Matthews, who caught three passes for 60 yards and a touchdown. However, the score came very late in garbage time. Matthews dropped a pass in the third quarter, but that was a result of a brutal, but legal hit.
Excluding Matthews and someone named Trey Burton (2-49), no other Eagle had more than 21 receiving yards. Cooper (2-16) was barely a factor, while disappointing rookie Nelson Agholor (2-15) was flagged at one point for taking off his helmet following a first-down conversion.
It wasn't surprising to see DeMarco Murray struggle again. Murray was awful, managing just 30 yards on 14 carries. Murray, who tripped on the turf a couple of times, can't really blame the blocking for this. The Eagles, quite simply, are using him incorrectly. Kelly continues to utilize Murray as an East-West runner, which is not the proper way to use him. This has been painfully obvious to everyone, save for Kelly, it seems. McCoy was such a better fit for this offense. Ryan Mathews is the better option as well, but he couldn't play because he has yet to pass concussion protocol.
As for the Lions, they actually began very dubiously, despite what the final score may say. Their first offensive snap was a penalty for not being aligned properly. Matthew Stafford then threw behind Calvin Johnson, and that was followed by an Ameer Abdullah drop. It appeared as though this was going to be yet another long Thanksgiving afternoon for the Lions, but the team completely turned things around after that. In fact, Stafford led six consecutive scoring drives that featured five touchdowns and a field goal.
Stafford was on fire, putting together one of the best games of his career. He went 27-of-38 for 337 yards and five touchdowns despite seeing his targets drop four passes. Stafford was battling a defense that didn't seem to have any sort of sensible game plan, but he was still amazing.
I still can't believe that the Eagles allowed a second-round rookie to cover Johnson without safety help. Megatron responded with eight catches for 93 yards and three touchdowns. He also should've drawn pass interference in the end zone on one occasion, but the flag wasn't thrown for some reason.
Stafford's other two touchdowns went to Golden Tate (7-50) and Theo Riddick (5-62). The latter was constantly open in the middle of the field, as it seemed as though Philadelphia had no idea that he could catch passes. Tate, meanwhile, dropped a pass, but was terrific otherwise.
No Detroit runner posted great numbers, but the Lions ran the ball very well, ripping off at least four yards on most of their carries, which constantly set up Stafford in second-and-short situations. Abdullah, who dropped a ball, managed to gain 63 yards on 16 carries. Joique Bell (7-25) bulldozed into the end zone on one occasion. He also dropped one pass.
Panthers 33, Cowboys 14
The Panthers told the media that they were disrespected by the fact that they were underdogs against a 3-7 opponent. It seemed like they were genuinely more excited to play on Thanksgiving heading into this game, and that was definitely the case. It seemed like they needed this victory more than Dallas did, despite the fact that the Cowboys have to win most of their remaining games to claim the weak NFC East.
Carolina's defense was completely dominant. Tony Romo was supposed to be the savior to lead the Cowboys to victory, but the Panthers picked him off thrice. The first occasion occurred on the opening drive, less than a minute into the game. Romo was pick-sixed by Kurt Coleman on a telegraphed pass to Jason Witten. Romo threw another interception returned for a touchdown - this time, Luke Kuechly snatched the obvious ball. Romo's third pick was an underthrown heave to Witten.
The Panthers limited Romo to 11-of-21, 106 yards and the three picks. Making matters worse for the Cowboys, Romo appeared to re-injure his collarbone on a crushing hit. Matt Cassel entered the contest and was effective - 13-of-19, 93 yards, one touchdown - albeit in garbage time. The truth of the matter is, if Romo is out again, the Cowboys are completely finished, even if the Giants lose to the Redskins on Sunday. On the other hand, if New York prevails, Dallas should be done regardless. Three back with five games to go is just too daunting to overcome.
As for Carolina's offense, Cam Newton didn't have to do very much because Romo was turning the ball over the entire evening. Newton's numbers don't look great - 16-of-27, 183 yards; 12 carries, 45 rush yards, one touchdown - but he played much better than his stats indicate. He made a number of important third-down conversions. He began with a strike to Greg Olsen on a third-and-10 through a tight window. He later hit Jerricho Cotchery with a dart to move the sticks on a third-and-17. On the same drive, which culminated in a touchdown, thanks to a Dallas unsportsmanlike penalty on a made field goal, Newton found Cotchery again on a third-and-10. Cotchery avoided a tackle to pick up the first down. Newton plunged into the end zone a couple of plays later.
Only two Panthers accumulated at least 70 receiving yards. Those were Cotchery (5-73) and Olsen (5-70). The latter could've had a better fantasy outing, but he dropped a touchdown.
Jonathan Stewart had a disappointing performance from a fantasy perspective, gaining 68 yards on 21 carries. Newton vultured a rushing score in the third quarter.
Moving back to the Cowboys, I already posted Romo's horrific stat line. Romo simply couldn't connect with Dez Bryant. He targeted Bryant four times in the opening half, but the dynamic wideout couldn't come up with a single reception until after intermission, thanks to an overthrow to Bryant for a potential big gain. Bryant ultimately finished with two grabs for 26 yards.
Cole Beasley was the only Cowboy receiver who didn't disappoint; he logged six receptions for 44 yards and a garbage-time touchdown. Terrance Williams (4-39) and Witten (4-36) were ineffective.
Darren McFadden struggled to find running room against Carolina's elite ground defense. McFadden was limited to just 11 yards on 10 carries, but he at least helped his PPR owners with four catches for a team-leading 45 receiving yards.
Packers XX, Bears XX
Texans XX, Saints XX
Falcons XX, Vikings XX
Bengals XX, Rams XX
Colts XX, Buccaneers XX
Giants XX, Redskins XX
Raiders XX, Titans XX
Chiefs XX, Bills XX
Jets XX, Dolphins XX
Jaguars XX, Chargers XX
Cardinals XX, 49ers XX
Seahawks XX, Steelers XX
Patriots XX, Broncos XX
Browns XX, Ravens XX
For more thoughts, check out my updated NFL Power Rankings, which will be posted Tuesday morning.