This weekend the NFL had one of the most entertaining weeks in recent memory. So which of these top headlines made this week in the NFL unforgettable?
Patriots In The Middle Of Another Miracle
It’s early December 2018. The New England Patriots are playing their division rival, the Miami Dolphins. The Miami Dolphins do the impossible and win a multiple lateral walk-off game, the first in NFL history. This game would later be known as the Miami Miracle.
Fast forward four years later, and the Patriots find themselves in the same territory, this time on the offensive side of the ball. Rhamondre Stevenson lateraled the ball back to Jakobi Meyers on the game’s final play as time expired. Jakobi Meyers would then heave the ball 10 yards behind him to a waiting Chandler Jones. Chandler Jones would stiff-arm Mac Jones and take the ball into the end-zone for a walk-off.
Truly one of the wildest things I have ever seen in a football game. This is one of those events where you know where and who you were with; watching this live, my jaw completely dropped. Bill Belichick afterward was NOT impressed, saying, “we need to be more aware of situational football.” The players were very apologetic and took the blame in their interviews after the game.
A Colts Bad Record Breaker
Poor Matt Ryan, Matt Ryan finds himself on the wrong side of the record books again. On Saturday, the Colts took on the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings were down 33-0 with under nine minutes left in the third quarter. However, Kirk Cousins and the Vikings would end up storming back and winning the game. This is now the largest comeback win in NFL history, passing the Buffalo Bills when they came back down 32 points in the 1992 AFC wild-card game against the Houston Oilers.
The Vikings became one of two teams in 1,550+ regular-season or playoff games to trail by 30 or more points since 1930. More familiar territory for Matt Ryan to top; he now is the quarterback for the largest lead given up in the regular season and the longest lead given up in the playoffs. Matt Ryan was the quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons when they gave up a 28-3 lead with just over two minutes left in the third against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
Jaguars Stun The Cowboys
Think the weekend couldn’t get any crazier? Think again. The Dallas Cowboys traveled to Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars in a massive game for the Cowboys to get closer to top seed in the NFC. The Cowboys got out to a 27-10 lead with just under five minutes left in the third quarter.
The Jaguars would score a touchdown to make it a ten-point game, and then Prescott would throw an interception leading to another Jaguars touchdown. Jacksonville would eventually come back and force overtime, where Dak Prescott would throw an interception that was taken into the end-zone for a pick-six.
With the loss, the Cowboys have nearly taken themselves out of consideration for the one seed and a first-round bye. Now they will battle the Vikings for, at the very least, some home-field advantage throughout the playoffs; the Dallas Cowboys have clinched a playoff spot already.
The Top Dogs In The NFL
Last but not least, we will discuss the top teams in the league and how their weekend went. My power rankings would be; the Chiefs, Bills, Eagles, 49ers, and Bengals. Of course, these rankings can and will likely change when the season ends. The Chiefs got into a surprising nail-biter with the Houston Texans, going into overtime. The Chiefs will be extremely tough to beat, especially at home in the playoffs.
The top team in the AFC, Buffalo Bills, had a fantastic game in the frigid temperatures. The forecast indicated we could see snow during the game on Saturday; at the very end, we did see heavy snow. Because of the cold, people questioned the Miami Dolphins’ ability to play in cold temperatures. However, they did surprisingly well, losing to the Bills by only three. I am nervous about the Bills’ defense moving forward, but that offense is as potent as they come.
The Eagles had a rough Sunday struggling at the Chicago Bears. The Eagles struggled to move the ball, leading them to run Jalen Hurts 17 times. The news came out on Monday that Jalen Hurts’ status is in doubt because of a sprained shoulder. However, he should be back for the playoffs and ready to compete for a Super Bowl.
The 49ers played on Thursday Night against the Seahawks, and they found ways to win. With Brock Purdy under center, the 49ers have not skipped a beat; Jimmy Garoppolo should be available by playoff time. If Jimmy G does not return, the 49ers will move down my list until that announcement; I have them at 4.
The last top dog I have is the Bengals. As a Steelers fan, I’m not too fond of this, and biases aside, I don’t love this pick. Joe Burrow is good, but he could be better. I witnessed him with my own eyes turn the ball over five times against the Steelers during Week 1. And somehow, this offensive line got worse in the off-season. Burrow has done the unthinkable with an underwhelming offensive line, so you must put the Bengals at the top. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if they had a first-round exit.
This was the best week as entertainment for the NFL season. I also want to point out that NFL games on Saturday are fantastic. Because college football is usually on Saturday, they do not schedule games then, but it is electric having the highest level of football on three days in a row.
With three weeks remaining, the top teams will be battling for the best seed in the playoffs. I can’t believe this regular season is already coming to an end. Enjoy it while it lasts!