What a week that was! We were treated to one of the most exciting endings to a game, right here in our own backyard. I was a great advert for the sport.
83,000 UK football fans were glued to their Wembley seats as the Lions fought back from the brink. Matt Stafford said it was the most emotional he’s been around a game – just keep them coming.
If you kept Big Ben Roethlisberger on your bench you must be reeling. The QB completed a whopping 40 of 49 passes for a career-high 522yds and six TDs in the Steelers’ 51-34 win over the Colts. He joined Roger Staubach and Tom Brady as just the third signal-caller in the Super Bowl era to win at least 100 games from their first 150 starts. Big Ben appears to be in total sync with Antonio Brown, who had ten receptions for 133yds and two touchdowns. I had Heath Miller on my bench. To be fair he’s done nothing all season, but his seven receptions on eight targets saw him claim a season-high 112yds + TD in that Colts win, clocking him 20.20 points in the process.
The rookie wideout, Sammy Watkins, had another big day. He had three catches on six targets for 157 yards and a touchdown on Sunday as his Bills side defeated the disappointing Jets 43-23. The Jets, who saw Percy Harvin start his first game, pulled Geno Smith at the end of the first quarter after he threw interceptions on three consecutive possessions. Enter Michael Vick. He didn’t do much better with one pick and two lost fumbles. Coach Rex Ryan said after the game, “Let me tell you, I’m getting sick and tired of the losing, that’s for sure”. They’ve now lost seven in a row for the first time since 2005 and Week 9 doesn’t get much easier for them with a trip to KC.
The Chiefs are unlucky to be in their division. Alex Smith is having a strong season, he completed 24 of 28 passes, in Week 8, for 226yds in Sunday’s 34-7 win over the Rams. Jamaal Charles lived up to his 1st Round pick once again, clocking up 23.70 points for me as he rushed for 73yds from 13 carries and four catches on four targets for 44yds. He’s my only standout RB, although I’ve waivered Carlos Hyde in time for Week 9. It’s difficult to see past the Broncos and Chargers in the AFC West, though.
Drew Brees and the Saints kept their play-off hopes alive in their impressive 44-23 win over the in-form Packers. Brees completed 27 of 32 passes for 311yds and three touchdowns. The QB enjoys the primetime spotlight. He lead the the Saints to points on eight of their nine competitive drives, including a run of four consecutive touchdowns in the second half. It was his best performance this season and Brandin Cooks also had his first big game since Week 1. He caught six of seven targets for 94yds and a touchdown. They’ll be primetime again on Thursday, so Saints fans will be hoping for more of the same.
Yet again we saw another standout performance from J.J. Watt. The DE had three tackles, two sacks, one batted pass and forced one fumble in Sunday’s win over the Titans. He’s up to seven sacks for the season, including five in the past three games. He’s one of my most consistent performers and deserves to be amongst the front runners for this year’s MVP.