Buffalo, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati all kicked game winning field goals as time ran off the clock. Washington scored a last minute touchdown in a wild back and forth game with Chicago.
But the coup de grace was the game between New England and the Jets, which went into overtime when the Patriots got a last second field goal. The teams traded punts in the extra period, and then the Jets managed a drive into field goal range.
It was no gimme, however, it was a 56 yarder that would have tied Nick Folk’s career high. He missed it, and New England was set to get the ball on about their own 40, needing just 25 yards or so to try a game winner of their own.
The Patriots’ Chris Jones was called for unsportsmanlike conduct. A newly instituted rule at the beginning of this season outlaws a player from pushing his own player from behind into the pile on a field goal try to attempt to get penetration.
In over 400 field goal attempts this season, this was the first time this penalty has been called.
The call handed the Jets the game. Leave it to the NFL to have the first call on a new rule be a game deciding penalty in overtime.
Congratulations to the Bears’ Devin Hester. Already the career leader in punt return TD’s, Hester brought his 13th back for a TD Sunday, tying him with Deion Sanders for 19 career return TD’s (punts, kickoffs or INTs). There’s simply no one better.
This Week’s Sucked And Won: Atlanta Falcons ball carriers. RBs Jacquizz Rodgers and Jason Snelling and QB Matt Ryan gained 18 yards on 18 carries on Sunday. That’s good enough to beat Tampa Bay, but basically no one else.
The Patriots have had plenty of bad news to deal with, losing multiple key players on defense and losing their game with the Jets on a controversial call, but one piece of good news is that TE Rob Gronkowski is back in a big way. Gronk caught 8 balls for 114 yards on Sunday, leading the team. Given New England’s woeful receiving situation, they need him in the worst way.
Shocking realization of the week: The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t won a home game in over a year, last doing so on September 30, 2012.
Should we just start calling the Indianapolis Colts the Dragonslayers? Three of their five wins have come against Seattle, San Francisco and Denver, all of which are on anyone’s list of the top half dozen or so teams in the NFL this season. No team has a more impressive collection to wins than the Colts.
Tony Romo just became the surprising answer to a trivia question, as he is now the all-time career leader in passing yards through his first 100 starts. Romo tops a list that includes Peyton Manning, Dan Marino and Kurt Warner. Pretty nice company.
This Week’s Great But Lost: Calvin Johnson, WR (DET). Megatron is back. He caught 9 passes for 155 yards and 2 TDs on Sunday, in a game that featured two of the game’s best wide receivers: the Bengals AJ Green caught 6 passes for 155 and 1 TD on the winning side.
Week 7 of the NFL may have shaken up the playoff race in more ways than just wins and losses on the field. The Bears lost Jay Cutler and Lance Briggs for six weeks to injuries. The Rams’ Sam Bradford is out for the year. Ditto the Colts Reggie Wayne and the Bucs Doug Martin. And there were plenty more injuries to key personnel around the league. You’ll need a scorecard to figure out who’s still operating with a full complement next week.
How do division rivalries affect game outcomes? When Dallas met Philadelphia on Sunday, it represented two of the top 5 scoring offenses in the NFL going up against the last ranked defense and third worst defense in the league. The game was no score fest however. During a 3-0 first half, the MVP of the game was probably Eagles punter Donnie Jones who kept stalemating Dallas on field position. The Cowboys finally won 17-3, making this the lowest scoring game of the week.
Thursday Pick: Carolina (-5.5) @Tampa Bay (5Dimes)
Can anyone take Tampa Bay at this point? Not against red hot Carolina, whose defensive front has been wreaking havoc on opposing offenses. And especially not now that Cam Newton has managed to string together two decent games. Panthers should roll here.
Carolina Panthers 27 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 17
“If I see him on the street, I’m gonna bust him in the f**king mouth.” – Panthers WR Steve Smith, objecting to St. Louis CB Janoris Jenkins taking his trash talk too far.
“You’re talking about two plays in the whole game. That guy played a great football game. Two plays in the whole game. He’s one of the best players in the NFL.” – Dolphins OL coach Jim Turner, defending RT Tyson Clabo, who surrendered two key sacks to Mario Williams in Sunday’s loss to the Bills.
“We made that play up. My mind went blank and I’m just glad Alex was able to execute the play and score.” – Chiefs RB Jamal Charles, on a 5 yard TD run by Alex Smith that was the result of his running the wrong way on a read option play.
“Any questions about Le’Veon Bell today?” – Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, calling out reporters who slammed Bell last week. The Steelers RB came back with a big game against Baltimore.
“Grittiest football team that I’ve ever been around my entire life.” – Colts coach Chuck Pagano, after his team knocked off the undefeated Broncos.
“I’ve said it all along, Philip is the wheels on our tank with what he brings to the table as a leader and as the quarterback of this football team.” – Chargers TE Antonio Gates, on QB Philip Rivers. (Tanks have wheels? Really?)