NFL Game Recaps: Week 6, 2023

Travis Kelce




NFL Game Recaps of previous weeks and seasons can be found via links at the bottom of the page.


Chiefs 19, Broncos 8
  • This was an incredibly sloppy game. Both teams committed turnovers in the first half, while the Chiefs failed to seize control because of some goofy play-calls. Russell Wilson tossed an early interception because he didn’t see Nick Bolton, while Patrick Mahomes was picked at the goal line when he carelessly threw the ball up for grabs.

    The Chiefs repeatedly stalled in Denver territory, settling for a bunch of field goals. It seemed like it was 16-0 forever until the Broncos were granted a free set of downs deep in Kansas City territory because of a bogus roughing-the-passer penalty. Wilson finally got on the board by hitting Courtland Sutton for a touchdown on the next play to trim the margin to within eight.

    For the first time since the opening quarter, the game was in doubt for the Chiefs. Mahomes, however, hit Rashee Rice for a 28-yard pass on a third-and-2 to move into field goal range. Harrison Butker drilled a 52-yard field goal to give the Chiefs an 11-point lead with two minutes remaining, putting the game out of reach for Denver.

  • Mahomes had a sloppy start to this game, but finished the night with a 75-percent completion rate and 300-plus passing yards. He went 30-of-40 for 306 yards, one touchdown and the pick. He also scrambled six times for 31 rushing yards.

  • Mahomes didn’t waste any time delivering passes to Travis Kelce, who reached 100 receiving yards by halftime. He hauled in all nine of his targets for 124 yards. He limped off the field late in the game, but it didn’t look overly serious. The only other Chief with more than 36 receiving yards was Rashee Rice, who snatched all four passes thrown to him for 72 yards.

  • Isiah Pacheco ran well, but didn’t do so enough. He rushed for 62 yards on 16 carries. He did a lot in the passing game, reeling in all six targets for 36 receiving yards.

  • As for the Broncos, the bleak stats match the underwhelming play. Kansas City’s front dominated, making it impossible for Denver to move the ball. The Broncos failed to accumulate 200 net yards.

    Wilson didn’t have much of a chance in the pocket, taking four sacks. He ended up 13-of-22 for only 95 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions, with the second pick coming off a deflection. He scrambled four times for 31 rushing yards, but all of those runs came when it was too late. Wilson needs to consider running more earlier in games.

  • Sutton was Denver’s leading receiver with four grabs for 46 yards and the near-covering touchdown. He was the only Bronco with more than 16 receiving yards. Jerry Jeudy (3-14) will likely be traded soon.

  • Javonte Williams looked good in his return from injury. He rushed for 52 yards on 10 carries. Denver would love to lift the restrictions of Williams just as the Jets did with Breece Hall, but that doesn’t seem to be wise.


  • Ravens 24, Titans 16
  • The Ravens prevailed in this game to improve to 4-2, but they must re-think their offensive strategy when they venture into the red zone. Baltimore moved the ball with ease in this contest, but repeatedly stalled deep in Tennessee territory. Justin Tucker drilled six field goals, though an extra point of his was blocked.

    While defenses can take credit for performing well while backed up on their own goal line, this was not the case in this game. The Ravens were completely responsible for their own futility. Despite having so much success aerially in between the 20s, the Ravens would almost always turn to the ground game in the red zone, which didn’t make any sense, especially in this matchup. The Titans excel versus the rush, but can’t stop the pass, so why did Baltimore run so much in crucial situations? The one time the Ravens didn’t go into this running shell, they scored their lone touchdown when Lamar Jackson hit Zay Flowers in the end zone. Despite this, the Ravens continued to be overly conservative in the red zone. Had they battled a competent offense, they would have lost.

  • And it wasn’t like Jackson wasn’t playing well either. Jackson made just a couple of mistakes in this game. He fired an interception on an overthrow and missed a wide-open Odell Beckham Jr., but was otherwise excellent. He went 21-of-30 for 223 yards, one touchdown and the pick. He also scrambled 13 times for 62 rushing yards.

  • The stats can tell you how ineffective the Baltimore ground attack was. Jackson led the team in rushing, outpacing Gus Edwards (16-41) and Justice Hill (8-35). The two backs failed to convert multiple third-and-short situations.

  • Flowers ended up with six catches for 50 yards and a touchdown. He trailed only Mark Andrews, who had four receptions for 69 yards.

  • As for the Titans, Ryan Tannehill was knocked out of the game with some sort of ankle injury in the fourth quarter. Malik Willis took over and led the Titans into the red zone, thanks to a 48-yard Tyjae Spears reception, but stalled near the goal line. Unlike the Ravens, the Titans didn’t bother running deep in Baltimore territory. Someone needs to tell these teams what their strengths are, apparently.

  • Willis was 4-of-5 for 74 yards, but took some bad sacks. He supplanted the miserable Tannehill, who was just 8-of-16 for 76 yards and an interception where he stared down his receiver.

  • The Titans didn’t run the ball enough with Derrick Henry, who rumbled for 97 yards and a touchdown on just 12 carries. He broke free for a 63-yard gain on Tennessee’s sole touchdown drive.

  • Spears led the Titans in receiving even though his 48-yard reception was his only catch. Nick Westbrook (3-25) was next. DeAndre Hopkins (1-20) was a huge disappointment, though he drew two interference flags, one of which was a bad call.


  • Vikings 19, Bears 13
  • Both the Vikings and Bears struggled mightily on defense throughout the season, so many expected some offensive fireworks in this game. Inexplicably, the two teams engaged in a defensive slugfest. Neither team logged more than 200 net yards until the third quarter, and both squads combined for 5-of-15 third-down conversions in the opening half. The two quarterbacks each were responsible for interceptions that occurred as they were being hit.

    Speaking of hits, Fields took a crushing one while trying to escape pressure in the third quarter. He was knocked out with a wrist injury, forcing someone named Tyson Bagent into the game as a replacement. It was quickly apparent that Bagent was not ready for regular-season action because he lost a fumble on a strip-sack on his very first snap. Jordan Hicks scooped and scored, giving the Vikings a 19-6 lead in a game that didn’t have a margin of more than six points for either team prior to that play.

    The Bears actually had a chance to win the game in the final minutes. Bagent, who had completed most of his passes after the fumble (10-of-14, 83 yards), lobbed a horribly underthrown pass, which was intercepted.

  • It’s unclear how long Fields will miss with his wrist injury, but perhaps it’s for the best. The Bears can now concentrate on obtaining the top two picks of the 2024 NFL Draft, which will give them Caleb Williams and a haul for many other draft choices from a team wanting to trade up for Drake Maye. Fields went 6-of-10 for 58 yards and an interception. He scrambled eight times for 46 rushing yards.

  • Kirk Cousins didn’t do too much better than Fields, going 21-of-31 for 181 yards and a touchdown. His “interception” was credited as a lost fumble, but it was still a similar turnover to the one Fields suffered. It was clear that Cousins was not the same quarterback as we’ve seen when he has Justin Jefferson at his disposal.

  • With Jefferson missing, no Viking logged more than 50 receiving yards. T.J. Hockenson led the way with six grabs for 50 yards, while Jordan Addison caught three passes for 28 yards and a touchdown. He was guilty of a drop. K.J. Osborn snatched four passes for 48 yards. He recorded those stats in the opening half with some big catches in the second quarter, but couldn’t do anything following intermission.

  • Alexander Mattison couldn’t get anything going either. He managed only 44 yards on 18 carries. He at least caught four passes for 28 receiving yards.

  • The Bears had two players who outgained Mattison on the ground, with Fields being one of them. The other was D’Onta Foreman, who rumbled for 65 yards on 15 carries. He split touches with Darrynton Evans (9-32) in the first half before taking over after intermission.

  • It was no surprise that D.J. Moore paced Chicago in receiving. He caught five passes for 51 yards. Darnell Mooney (2-48) was the only other Bear with more than 12 receiving yards.


  • Bengals 17, Seahawks 13
  • It was unclear if Joe Burrow was fully recovered from his calf injury after he defeated Arizona last week. Burrow certainly seemed like he was trending in that direction, but in a one-game sample size, it wasn’t completely clear if he was back to his former self.

    After this game, Burrow’s health is a bit more in doubt. Cincinnati really struggled to move the ball in this game after some early success, as Burrow went back to throwing mostly checkdowns. The team mustered only 214 net yards of offense, as it was outgained by about 170 yards. The Bengals were especially dreadful offensively in the second half, generating just 52 net yards following the break. It looked for a while that the Bengals would blow their lead, but Seattle’s offense had something to say about that.

    The Seahawks had great success moving the chains in between the 20s, but constantly bogged down in the red zone. Mistakes were made otherwise as well. This includes a Geno Smith interception that was thrown into double coverage. Smith also didn’t see a wide-open D.K. Metcalf for a touchdown, prompting the receiver to express his frustration. Metcalf would eventually miss some time with an injury as well, further causing problems for Seattle’s offense.

    Despite all of this, the Seahawks were in position to win at the very end. However, a poor play-call and immense pressure from the Bengals’ front caused some incompletions for Seattle to end the game.

  • Burrow did not finish with the most promising stat line despite battling a Seattle defense that often struggles versus the pass. Burrow went 24-of-35, but for only 185 yards. He threw two touchdowns, but was also intercepted on an underthrown pass. As mentioned, he tossed tons of checkdowns, especially early in the game, though he did manage to complete his first 10 passes.

  • Burrow’s touchdown went to Tyler Boyd, who caught all seven of his targets for 38 yards. He trailed only Ja’Marr Chase on the receiving list, with Chase catching six balls for 80 yards. Tee Higgins (2-20) did almost nothing in his return from injury.

  • It was no surprise that Joe Mixon struggled against Seattle’s stout run defense. Mixon mustered only 38 yards on 12 carries. He dropped a pass on third down.

  • Kenneth Walker had more success running the ball than Mixon, which was also not a surprise. Walker gained 62 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries. He got off to a hot start in the first half with 46 yards and a score, but didn’t do much following intermission.

  • Smith eclipsed 300 yards, but hurt his team with two interceptions. He was 27-of-41 for 323 yards and the pair of picks. He’s lucky he wasn’t intercepted on another occasion when he carelessly threw the ball up for grabs in the third quarter.

  • With Metcalf missing some action, Tyler Lockett led the team with six catches for 94 yards, including a 36-yard reception that gave the Seahawks a chance to win at the end. He also drew an interference flag in the end zone to set up a Walker touchdown. Metcalf logged four catches for 69 yards.


  • Browns 19, 49ers 17
  • There is only one NFL team that has gone completely undefeated, so there’s no shame in losing a game, especially one on the road versus a team with a top defense. However, this defeat was especially painful for the 49ers, and not just because their quarterback suffered the first loss of his career. This result saw several key players suffer injuries, which could adversely impact San Francisco moving forward.

    It all started when Trent Williams had to leave the game. Deebo Samuel was injured soon after that. Williams eventually returned, but Samuel never did. Christian McCaffrey was then knocked out with an oblique. By the fourth quarter, the 49ers had a skeleton crew offense.

    Despite this, Brock Purdy and Brandon Aiyuk put the team in position to win with a field goal. All Jake Moody needed to do was drill a 41-yard field goal. This seemed easy enough, as Kyle Shanahan settled for the kick by running out the clock at the end. Moody missed, however, giving the Browns the upset victory.

  • Cleveland’s defense deserves all the credit for this win. Phillip Walker made some clutch throws in the fourth quarter, including one where he fit the ball through a tight window on fourth down, but nearly threw the game away with a pass that was almost picked. It’s unclear what Walker was thinking, given that he was in position for the decisive field goal. The pass fell incomplete, but the added 40 seconds allowed the 49ers to have a chance at the end.

    walker barely completed half of his passes, going 18-of-34 for 192 yards and two interceptions. The first pick was especially ugly, with Walker flinging a side-armed throw while staring down his receiver. The second interception was nowhere near the receiver, and it set up a San Francisco touchdown. Walker was incredibly lucky that he wasn’t picked on numerous other occasions.

  • Despite the poor moments, Walker outgained Purdy by a wide margin. Purdy failed to complete half of his passes, going 12-of-27 for only 125 yards, one touchdown and an interception. The matchup was too difficult to overcome in most instances, given the depleted supporting cast. Despite this, Purdy still put his team in position to win at the end, but his kicker let him down.

  • Speaking of that depleted supporting cast, Christian McCaffrey scored once again. He rushed for 43 yards on 11 carries, but scored aerially with his three catches going for nine receiving yards.

  • Despite accumulating just nine receiving yards, McCaffrey was third on the team in receiving. Aiyuk was his usual self with four catches for 76 yards, which includes a great play he made on the final drive. Aiyuk had a chance for a big gain earlier in the game, but Purdy missed him. Jauan Jennings (2-26) was the only other positive producer, as George Kittle caught only one ball for a single yard. Deebo Samuel didn’t catch a single pass.

  • Amari Cooper was the game’s leading receiver. He caught four passes for 108 yards, making a couple of great plays to give the Browns a chance to prevail. David Njoku and Kareem Hunt, both of whom caught three passes for 24 yards, were next on the receiving list. Njoku appeared to score a touchdown, but the play was negated by a hold.

  • Speaking of Hunt, he and Jerome Ford ran well on the 49ers. Ford dashed for 84 yards on 17 carries, while Hunt tallied 47 yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts.


  • Dolphins 42, Panthers 21
  • For a while, it seemed like the Dolphins’ one-loss record was in jeopardy, with Miami potentially losing a completely embarrassing game in which it was favored by more than two touchdowns. The Dolphins actually trailed by two touchdowns in this game, with the Panthers scoring twice quickly. Bryce Young went up and down the field repeatedly versus Miami’s poor defense. The Dolphins, meanwhile, could do nothing on offense, going three-and-out repeatedly.

    It didn’t take very long for reality to set in for the Panthers, however. Miami’s offense finally got on track, with Tua Tagovailoa hitting his receivers in stride once more. The running game, meanwhile, was completely dominant. And as for Carolina’s offense, the unit didn’t score a single point following its 14-0 start. The Panthers’ third touchdown came on a Mike White pick-six in garbage time that appeared to cover the spread for Carolina before Miami scored another touchdown at the end of regulation.

  • Tagovailoa finished 21-of-31 for 262 yards and three touchdowns. He rebounded from his slow start to torch Carolina’s hapless defense. If he hadn’t been pulled early, he could have easily eclipsed 300 passing yards.

  • Tyreek Hill notched more than half of Tagovailoa’s passing yardage. He caught six balls for 163 yards and a touchdown, which featured a celebration in which he grabbed someone’s cell phone and filmed himself doing a back flip. He was penalized for this, and he later suffered what appeared to be a hamstring injury at the end of a long catch-and-run. This was just a cramp, however, as Hill was able to return to action.

    Elsewhere in the Miami receiving corps, Jaylen Waddle was the only other Dolphin with more than 20 receiving yards. Waddle secured seven of his nine targets for 51 yards and a touchdown.

  • Raheem Mostert had a monstrous performance. He rushed for 115 yards and two touchdowns on just 17 carries, fully taking advantage of Carolina’s horrendous run defense. He scored a third time aerially, catching three passes for 17 receiving yards.

  • As for the Panthers, Bryce Young had a respectable stat line, going 23-of-38 for 217 yards and a touchdown. However, he barely did anything after the first two drives. His second-half stats were just 9-of-18 for 76 yards.

  • It was no surprise that Young threw mostly to Adam Thielen, who recorded 11 catches for 115 yards and a touchdown. He was the only Carolina player with more than 26 receiving yards.

  • Chuba Hubbard had a strong performance as a replacement for Miles Sanders. He rushed for 88 yards and a touchdown on 19 attempts. It was surprising that he didn’t do much in the passing game, catching only one ball.


  • Jaguars 37, Colts 20
  • The Jaguars were in a bad spot entering this game. They adjusted their body clocks to London time as a result of being in England for two weeks. They had to fly back four hours westward to play a contest against a foe they had beaten already, all before battling a team with a winning record on the upcoming Thursday night.

    However, no one told the Jaguars this. Their defense dominated their former quarterback, as Gardner Minshew sabotaged a potential upset with two turnovers in the opening half. Minshew gave the Jaguars a quick score by losing a fumble on a strip-sack where he held the ball forever. Minshew then was intercepted near the end zone on an overthrow, negating a potential score. The result of this was a 21-6 Jacksonville lead heading into the locker room.

    The ugliness continued after intermission. The Colts got a stop and a big play to move inside Jacksonville territory, but Minshew heaved an ugly duck that floated helplessly to a Jaguar safety. This set up a field goal to give Jacksonville a three-score lead.

  • With Minshew imploding, Trevor Lawrence didn’t have to do much. He went 20-of-30 for 181 yards, two touchdowns and an interception that occurred late in the game. The pick gave the Colts some life, but they just continued to self-destruct.

  • With Lawrence not doing much, the pass-catchers felt it in the box score. Christian Kirk led the team in receiving with three catches for 49 yards and a touchdown. Evan Engram was next with seven grabs for 41 yards. Calvin Ridley (4-30) was a big disappointment.

  • Travis Etienne was the only Jaguar who had a big fantasy performance. He rushed for only 55 yards on 18 carries, but he scored two touchdowns. He also caught three passes for 28 receiving yards.

  • The Colts, meanwhile, were able to accumulate some garbage stats in the second half. Michael Pittman Jr. was able to benefit most, catching nine of his 14 targets for 109 yards. Kylen Granson was next on the stat sheet with three grabs for 67 yards.

  • Minshew also had his stats padded at the end. He went 33-of-55 for 329 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Make no mistake, however, Minshew was primarily at fault for Indianapolis losing this game.

  • The Indianapolis runners also did well at the end. Zack Moss (7-21) scored a touchdown, while Jonathan Taylor mustered only 19 yards on eight carries. However, Taylor caught five passes for 46 receiving yards, while Moss hauled in six passes for 38 receiving yards.


  • Texans 20, Saints 13
  • It was bound to happen sooner or later. C.J. Stroud entered this game without throwing a single interception, setting the record for most passes without a pick in a career. The Saints came into the game with the third-ranked EPA defense, so naturally, it didn’t take very long for Stroud to toss his first interception on a telegraphed throw. After 191 passes, Stroud finally threw a pick.

    Except, the interception didn’t hurt the team at all. Astonishingly, the defender who came away with the interception lost a fumble, giving the Texans a free set of downs. Stroud continued the drive and eventually hit Dalton Schultz for a touchdown to take the lead. This was one of many successful drives Stroud had in the first half, as he established a 17-7 lead in the second quarter.

    The Texans didn’t do much offensively in the second half with only three points following intermission. The Saints had success moving the chains in the 20s, but constantly stalled inside the red zone. This includes a missed 29-yard field goal when the score was 20-13. This whiff ultimately didn’t matter, as Derek Carr had four consecutive incompletions from the Houston 24-yard line on the final possession of the game.

  • Despite his hot start, Stroud was incredibly cold in the second half. It didn’t help that Dalton Schultz dropped a touchdown, but Stroud was just 3-of-10 for 58 yards following intermission. The Saints’ defense finally came alive, but it was too late. Stroud ended up 13-of-27 for 199 yards, two touchdowns and the aforementioned pick.

  • With Tank Dell sidelined with a concussion, Nico Collins and Schultz were the only Texans with more than 37 receiving yards. Collins led the way with four grabs for 80 yards. He also drew an interference flag. Schultz logged four receptions for 61 yards and a touchdown, but he should have scored twice.

  • Dameon Pierce was benched in this game after he mustered only 34 yards on 13 carries. Devin Singletary was better, dashing for 58 yards on 12 attempts.

  • Alvin Kamara was the game’s leading runner with 68 yards on 19 carries. He caught seven passes as well, picking up 36 receiving yards in the process.

  • Carr posted a pretty stat line, but constantly threw because he was behind. He also struggled in the red zone, so don’t read too much into the numbers. Carr was 32-of-50 for 353 yards, one touchdown and an interception on the final play of the game.

  • Carr’s touchdown went to Rashid Shaheed, who caught two passes for 85 yards. Only Chris Olave (7-96) beat Shaheed in the Saints’ box score.


  • Redskins 24, Falcons 16
    By Charlie Campbell – @draftcampbell

  • EDITOR’S NOTE: Does Arthur Smith know that Bijan Robinson was drafted in the top 10? If not, could someone tell him? Robinson has received equal or fewer carries compared to Tyler Allgeier the past two weeks!

  • Washington got a victory to improve to 3-3, but Falcons head coach Arthur Smith made a lot of questionable decisions to assist the Redskins coming away with the road win. Smith struggled to get play called in an orderly fashion to avoid delay of games, went for some suspect fourth downs, as well as a weird two-point conversion. Once again, Smith did not sufficiently utilize his elite playmakers of Kyle Pitts, Drake London and Bijan Robinson. Desmond Ridder played poorly, and his trio of interceptions cost the Falcons dearly. If Ridder and Smith don’t show vast improvement in the second half of the season, Atlanta has to consider firing Smith and finding an upgrade for Ridder.


  • Washington took the opening drive down the field, but a Grady Jarrett sack helped snuff out the possession and force a field goal. Atlanta took its opening possession down the field, with Ridder ripping the ball through the Washington secondary, using London before Pitts (4-43-1) made a superb catch in the back of the end zone to put Atlanta up 7-3. After trading some punts, Jamison Crowder returned a punt 61 yards to the Falcons 11. A few plays later, Sam Howell tossed a short touchdown pass to Antonio Gibson. After a fourth-down stop by the Washington defense, Howell converted a fourth down with his legs and then hit Curtis Samuel for a seven-yard touchdown to go up 17-7.

    The Falcons got moving by using Pitts and a swing route to Robinson for a gain of about 25, but the drive stalled, leaving them to settle for a field goal. Calais Campbell’s 100th career sack killed a Washington drive to keep the score 17-10 at halftime.

    On the first possession of the third quarter, Ridder had a miscommunication with his receiver, which led to an interception from Kendall Fuller, who returned it inside the Atlanta 30-yard line. A few plays later, Brian Robinson took a screen 24 yards for a touchdown to put Washington up 24-10.

    The Falcons got back in the game early in the fourth quarter with a short touchdown toss to tight end Jonnu Smith. After a quick Redskins punt, Atlanta crossed midfield with London making a leaping grab and Robinson pounding the the middle. A critical roughing-the-passer penalty gifted Atlanta a first down. But on third-and-goal, Ridder threw a terrible pass that floated right to Benjamin St-Juste for an interception.

    The Atlanta defense forced a three-and-out, so Ridder got another shot with 3:28 remaining close to midfield, but the drive went four-and-out. Smith could have pinned Washington deep with three time outs, and the 2-minute warning to set up good field position with a three-and-out. Instead, the Falcons got the ball back with one time out left inside their own 10-yard line and just under two minutes.

    Ridder quickly started the possession by completing a few passes to London and then hit Mack Hollins for 18 yards. Smith’s horrible game management came in to play again, with the Falcons having to use their final timeout right after they spiked the ball because Smith did not get the play in on time and they had to avoid a delay-of-game penalty. On the ensuing play, Washington linebacker Jamin Davis intercepted Ridder to clinch the road win.


  • Howell completed 14-of-23 passes for 151 yards and three touchdowns.


  • Brian Robinson ran for 33 yards on 11 carries.


  • Terry McLaurin had six catches for 81 yards.


  • Ridder completed 28-of-47 passes for 308 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions.


  • Bijan Robinson ran for 37 yards on 13 carries and had five catches for 43 yards. Tyler Allgeier (13-51) received the same number of carries as Robinson.


  • London had nine receptions for 125 yards.



  • Lions 20, Buccaneers 6
    By Charlie Campbell – @draftcampbell

  • EDITOR’S NOTE: Shame on me for going against the Lions. Please forgive me, Dan Campbell!

  • While the offense of the Lions has received a lot of acclaim, their defense dominated Tampa Bay to lead them to a 3-0 record on the road this season, adding this victory to the impressive road wins at Kansas City and Green Bay. Detroit held the Bucs to just 2-for-12 on third down and allowed only 13 first downs, none of them coming from rushing. After David Montgomery got hurt, Jared Goff and Amon-Ra St. Brown picked up the slack to carry the Detroit offense. The Lions have now improved to 5-1, but the Buccaneers maintained their spot in first place in the NFC South thanks to the Falcons, Saints and Panthers all losing in Week 6.


  • Early in the first quarter, the Lions got in position to strike first after defensive back Will Harris caught a deflected pass that gifted Detroit the ball inside the Tampa Bay 15. The Lions, however, had to settle for a field goal. After trading a number of punts, Tampa Bay had good field position, and Baker Mayfield found Trey Palmer for a gain of 21 yards. The drive stalled, and Tampa Bay settled for a game-tying field goal. Detroit moved down the field shortly afterward with a 19-yard screen pass to Montgomery and a 21-yard completion to Josh Reynolds (3-50). The Lions scored a 27-yard touchdown thanks to a fantastic block by backup running back Craig Reynolds that sprung St. Brown down the sideline. The defenses were playing well, leaving the score at 10-3 at halftime.

    Detroit opened the third quarter by popping a screen to Reynolds for 28 yards, but Lions kicker Riley Patterson missed a 52-yard field goal attempt. Mayfield promptly connected with Chris Godwin and then Mike Evans for 41 yards, but a pass interference on Evans forced Tampa Bay into field goal that cut the Detroit lead to 10-6.

    After David Montgomery (6-14, 1-19) went out with a rib injury, the Detroit passing attack of the Lions had to pick up the slack, which they did with Goff lofting a bomb to Jameson Williams for a 45-yard touchdown. After a Bucs punt, the Lions put together a field goal drive to go up 20-6 early in the fourth quarter. Detroit had a 7-minute drive produce no points, but eating up that much time essentially put the game out of reach for Tampa Bay. In the final few minutes, the Bucs moved the ball into Detroit territory, but the Detroit defense slammed the door.


  • Goff completed 30-of-44 passes for 353 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions.


  • St. Brown dominated the Tampa Bay secondary, catching 12 passes for 124 yards and a touchdown. He made some clutch third-down conversions.


  • Mayfield was 19-of-37 for 206 yards and an interception. The Lions harassed him consistently, but he had a number of missed opportunities for game-changing plays that fell incomplete. Twice, Mayfield had receiver Trey Palmer running wide open deep down the field, and each time Mayfield overthrew him. Mayfield also had Mike Evans wide open in busted coverage deep down the field on his first-quarter interception, but Mayfield didn’t see Evans all alone downfield.


  • Once again, the Buccaneers had no ground offense. Rachaad White led them with only 26 yards on seven carries.


  • Godwin (6-77) and Evans (4-49) were held in check by the Detroit defense.



  • Raiders 21, Patriots 17
  • The Patriots had been terrible leading up to this game, but they were at least battling the worst team on their schedule thus far. They had gone against the Eagles, Dolphins, Jets, Cowboys, and Saints, five teams with a combined 19-9 record. The Raiders, by comparison, were just 2-3 and came into this game ranked in the bottom six of most metrics. If the Patriots were going to rebound, it would be in this game.

    Instead, the Patriots struggled in all facets. Defensively, they had problems stopping both Jimmy Garoppolo and Brian Hoyer, who replaced Garoppolo when the starter hurt his back. Garoppolo and Hoyer went a combined 20-of-32 for 264 yards, one touchdown and an interception, which was thrown by Garoppolo as a result of Davante Adams getting hit as the ball reached him. It’s truly amazing that Bill Belichick’s prized defensive unit looked so helpless versus Hoyer, who was 6-of-10 for 102 yards.

    Offensively, the Patriots had issues moving the chains against one of the worst defenses in the NFL. Mac Jones was inconsistent in moving the chains and had one of the worst interceptions you’ll ever see. He threw late across his body and behind his intended target, prompting Tony Romo to say, “This is just a horrendous throw.”

    Jones eventually put together a couple of scoring drives, drawing to within two. He made a rare great throw to DeVante Parker deep downfield, but Parker dropped the ball. Jones was then guilty of a delay-of-game penalty and then took a sack in his own end zone for a safety. That put the margin from two to four, which resulted in a brutal beat for anyone who had bet New England +3.

    Jones was 24-of-33 for 200 yards and the ugly interception. This, sadly, was one of his best games of the year. He clearly is not the answer and must be replaced next offseason.

  • The only productive Patriot was Kendrick Bourne, who caught 10 passes for 89 yards. Mike Gesicki was next with three grabs for 28 yards. Hunter Henry, who had one catch for seven yards before getting hurt, was guilty of a holding penalty to negate an Ezekiel Elliott long touchdown.

  • Speaking of Elliott, both he and Rhamondre Stevenson scored touchdowns. Stevenson had more carries, 10-7, and more yards, 46-34, but he also got hurt and missed some action before returning.

  • The leading rusher in this game was predictably Josh Jacobs, though the Raider back couldn’t find much running room outside of an 18-yard burst. He had 77 yards on 25 carries.

  • The Raider tight ends were active early in the game. Michael Mayer led the Raiders with five catches for 75 yards. Jakobi Meyers caught five passes for 61 yards and a touchdown. Adams (2-29) was a mere distraction, as Belichick schemed to shut him down.


  • Rams 26, Cardinals 9
  • It’s hard to believe, based on this final score, that this game was very much in doubt for the Rams in the third quarter. The Cardinals actually entered the second half with a 9-6 lead. The Rams had issues moving the chains prior to intermission. Part of the problem was that they had 15 passes compared to three runs. Matthew Stafford saw plenty of pressure in the pocket from Arizona’s underrated pass rush.

    The Rams changed their offensive philosophy in the third quarter. They ran the ball on nearly every play to start, which proved to be very effective because Arizona could do nothing to stop the run. Kyren Williams, who had two carries for four yards by the break, finished with 158 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries.

    With Williams trampling the defense, Arizona’s offense began to sputter. Joshua Dobbs, who is normally careful with the football, began to implode as he tried to make a comeback. He threw an interception that was way behind his receiver, and he was later strip-sacked. Arizona didn’t score a single point following intermission.

  • Stafford threw just nine passes in the second half, giving him an underwhelming stat line: 15-of-24, 226 yards, one touchdown. He had no chance behind his offensive line in the first half, so the Rams had to make the adjustment to going run-heavy.

  • Despite Stafford’s limited production, Cooper Kupp had a huge performance with seven catches for 148 yards and a touchdown. He was the only Rams player with more than 30 receiving yards. Puka Nacua was limited to four grabs for 26 yards.

  • As for the Cardinals, Dobbs went 21-of-41 for 235 yards and the two aforementioned turnovers. He helped his fantasy owners with seven scrambles for 47 rushing yards, but he had a disappointing showing overall.

  • Dobbs threw to Marquise Brown more than anyone else, but Brown converted just four of his 11 targets for 34 yards. He finished behind Michael Wilson (3-62) and Trey McBride (4-62) on the stat sheet.

  • Everyone assumed that Emari Demercado would take over for the injured James Conner. Instead, it was Keontay Ingram and Darrell Williams. Ingram just barely outgained Williams, 40-36, on two more carries (10-8).


  • Jets 20, Eagles 14
  • The Jets have a habit of frustrating elite quarterbacks at home. They defeated Josh Allen at home, then forced Patrick Mahomes into his worst performance of the season. They faced Jalen Hurts without their top two cornerbacks, yet it didn’t matter because the result was the same.

    Hurts had a miserable performance in Philadelphia’s first loss of the season. He threw three interceptions, though the first one wasn’t his fault; Dallas Goedert had the ball knocked out of his hands, and it flew into the arms of Quinnen Williams. Hurts’ second interception was the result of him being hit as he threw, but he and his receivers had some major gaffes in between. For example, Hurts overthrew A.J. Brown for a potential touchdown, while DeVonta Smith dropped what should have been a big play. D’Andre Swift lost a fumble.

    Hurts’ third interception was the real killer. Up 14-12, the Eagles were tasked with keeping the chains moving to milk the clock. Hurts’ priority was taking care of the ball, but he didn’t do so. He stared down his receiver while releasing the ball off his back foot. The pass was picked, and the Jets took advantage with an 8-yard Breece Hall touchdown to give them the victory.

    Hurts finished 28-of-45 for 280 yards, one touchdown and the three interceptions. He was able to rush for eight yards for 47 yards and a touchdown to help salvage his fantasy performance, but his performance overall was poor – although predictable, given how Allen and Mahomes performed in this same location.

  • Brown was the only Eagle play-maker who didn’t screw up. He caught seven passes for 131 yards, becoming the first Eagles receiver to ever record 125-plus receiving yards in four consecutive games. He should have enjoyed an even better performance, but Hurts overshot him on a deep pass. Smith logged just five receptions for 44 yards. Goedert (5-42) was responsible for an interception.

  • The Eagles couldn’t run the ball at all outside of Hurts. Swift was limited to only 18 yards on 10 carries. He did well as a receiver out of the backfield with eight catches for 40 receiving yards and a touchdown, but he lost the aforementioned fumble.

  • As for the Jets’ offense, they didn’t get much out of Zach Wilson, but the young quarterback didn’t commit a turnover, which is the most important thing. Wilson went 19-of-33 for 186 yards. He took a terrible sack in the red zone and made some other minor mistakes, but he didn’t truly cost his team.

  • Both Garrett Wilson and Hall had nice games. Wilson seemed to suffer an early injury on a non-contact play, but was able to return to action eventually. He caught eight of his 12 targets for 90 yards. Hall, who scored the game-winning touchdown, rushed for 39 yards on 12 carries, but did some damage as a receiver out of the backfield with five catches for 54 receiving yards.


  • Bills 14, Giants 9
  • Rich Eisen said the Bills looked like they were sleepwalking in their loss to the Jaguars in London. This was understandable, given that they were playing a 9:30 a.m. game against a team that had adjusted their body clocks. What is inexplicable is that the Bills would continue to perform this way in a matchup at home following a loss on national TV.

    The Bills looked like they were still playing early in the morning in this game, as they made a number of mistakes to trail 6-0 in the third quarter. Stefon Diggs was guilty of an early drop, while Gabe Davis lost a fumble. Josh Allen was then picked off a deflection. The discombobulated Bills recorded just 142 net yards of offense in the opening half against one of the worst defenses in the NFL.

    Buffalo eventually awakened in the second half, as Allen was able to engineer a couple of scoring drives. He had a chance to ice the game, but missed an open target on third down, giving the Giants one more chance. Tyrod Taylor, starting in favor of Daniel Jones, drove down the field to the 1-yard line. He had one final play on an untimed down following a pass interference, but overshot Darren Waller to preserve Buffalo’s undeserved win amid controversy that a Buffalo defender interfered with the tight end.

  • Allen had a horrible performance by his standards, going 19-of-30 for 169 yards, two touchdowns and the interception. For some reason, he barely ran, scrambling just twice for 11 rushing yards. Allen took a hard hit in the second quarter that had him enter the medical talent for a concussion test, but he was cleared rather quickly.

  • Despite the early drop, Diggs reached the century mark on the dot, catching 10 passes for 100 yards. Davis disappointed with three catches for 21 yards despite being second on the team in receiving.

  • The Bills were able to run well with James Cook, who dashed for 71 yards on 14 carries. Fellow running back Damien Harris suffered a horrible-looking back injury that had him forced to the hospital.

  • As for the Giants, Tyrod Taylor did a solid job in place of the injured Daniel Jones, who went 24-of-36 for 200 yards. He also scrambled five times for 24 rushing yards. Taylor made a horrible mistake prior to the half when he optioned to a running play with no time remaining just shy of the goal line. Had he just settled for the field goal, the Giants may have been in a position to win or tie with a kick at the end.

  • Saquon Barkley’s return to action helped spark the Giants. He rushed for 93 yards on 24 carries. He caught four passes, but was able to gain only five receiving yards.

  • Darius Slayton paced the Giants in receiving with four grabs for 69 yards, followed by Wan’Dale Robinson (8-62). Waller made five catches for 43 yards.


  • Cowboys 20, Chargers 17
  • Both the Cowboys and Chargers are notorious for blowing games that they should win, so this was a battle between teams to see who could screw up less frequently.

    We saw some errors early, like when a Joshua Palmer touchdown was negated by an ineligible player downfield. However, the fun began in the second half. Justin Herbert overthrew Keenan Allen for what should have been a deep touchdown. The Chargers then had another drive ruined by a holding call, turning a third-and-1 opportunity into a third-and-11 dilemma. The Cowboys ended up forcing a punt, but Jalen Tolbert pounced on the ball like some sort of buffoon, giving the Chargers a free possession. Herbert finally took advantage by hitting Gerald Everett in the end zone to tie the game at 17.

    The Chargers had a chance to retain possession by forcing Dallas into a third-and-19, but they bailed the Cowboys out with a holding call. Dallas then screwed up by blowing a chance to go up by a touchdown, with Dak Prescott overthrowing a wide-open Tony Pollard in the end zone. The Cowboys were still able to kick a field goal, giving the Chargers one last opportunity.

    In Charger-fashion, this final opportunity amounted to nothing. Herbert took a sack and then was intercepted to give the Cowboys the victory.

  • Aside from the whiff to Pollard and a couple of misses involving Michael Gallup, Prescott played a solid game overall. He went 21-of-30 for 272 yards and a touchdown. He also scored a second time on the ground, rushing seven times for 40 yards.

    Prescott was the better quarterback in this game at least, though he faced the softer defense. Herbert had some great moments, but made too many mistakes and errant throws to cost his team another victory. Herbert went 22-of-37 for 227 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He also did some work on the ground with six scrambles for 20 yards.

  • The leading rusher in this game, if Prescott is excluded, was Pollard, who rushed for only 30 yards on 15 carries. Pollard, however, made a huge play in the passing game with a 60-yard reception in which he was just barely taken down in the red zone. Pollard caught six balls for 80 receiving yards. As mentioned, he should have scored an aerial touchdown, but Prescott overshot him.

    Ekeler, meanwhile, didn’t have any sort of success on the ground. He mustered only 27 yards on 14 carries. He naturally was a factor in the passing game, recording four catches for 35 receiving yards.

  • The leading receiver between these teams was CeeDee Lamb, who converted all seven targets thrown his way for 117 yards. Cooks (4-36) scored Prescott’s sole touchdown. Meanwhile, Gallup (3-24) saw the most targets with 10, but he and Prescott weren’t on the same page on several instances. Still, Prescott missed him for a big gain on one occasion.

    Allen led the Chargers in receiving with seven grabs for 85 yards and a touchdown, but could have put together a much bigger night. Palmer (4-60) and Ekeler were the only other Chargers with more than 20 receiving yards. Quentin Johnson didn’t record a single catch on two targets.


  • For more thoughts, check out my updated NFL Power Rankings, which will be posted Tuesday morning.



    Fantasy Football Rankings - May 23


    2025 NFL Mock Draft - May 21


    NFL Power Rankings - Feb. 22


    NFL Picks - Feb. 12








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