Shakespeare famously wrote that something was rotten in the state of Denmark. I’m here to tell you that something is rotten in Buffalo and San Fransisco. The plights of the Bills and the 49ers, along with a handful of other storylines, dominated Week 7. Here they are:
Top Takeaways from NFL Week 7
What’s the matter with the 49ers?
Yes, it was a road game in primetime on Monday Night Football, but it was against a Vikings team led by the primetime-challenged Kirk Cousins. The Niners were coming off a loss in Cleveland, and a banged-up Christian McCaffrey was healthy enough to suit up. This should have been a layup; they were favored by seven points in the game.
Maybe I’m being a bit reactionary and premature, but there’s a reason no “Mr. Irrelevent” has ever really done anything in the league. Could the braintrust of John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan have botched the QB position again? First, they trade up giving away valuable draft capital to snag Trey Lance, and then, as Brock Purdy seemingly emerges, they dump Lance to the Cowboys … for nothing.
Now, Purdy has come back to earth, and the clock has struck midnight. The book is out on him, with more and more tape every week, and he’s looking less than superhuman. I have a bold suggestion, one they should have entertained three years ago when he was a free agent: Give Tom Brady a call! His “ownership” of the Raiders has hit a snag, and I’m sure he’s still in game shape. This team is so close to winning a Super Bowl, and has been for a few years now, all they need is a QB … and unfortunately Brock Purdy isn’t it. It was a nice story while it lasted, but on the eve of Halloween, he has turned into a pumpkin.
What’s the matter with the Bills?
Unlike the 49ers, the Bills do have a QB. Josh Allen is truly one of the top five elite QBs in the league, but there is something going on in Buffalo. Despite being part of the best QB/WR tandem of the last few years, Stefon Diggs never seems satisfied, content, or happy with his role. Anytime the ball is going elsewhere or off the mark, he’s complaining.
The team is now 4-3 and could very easily be 3-4 if it weren’t for a questionable ending against the Giants the week earlier. If the playoffs began today, they would barely make it in as the No. 7 seed.
Even a blind squirrel can find a nut
The New England Patriots won a very crucial game for them. They are now 2-5 and heading to Miami. By season’s end, this win over Buffalo may not prove to be that amazing, against what is starting to look like an underachieving Bills team.
Even if the Pats do lose this week, they are heading into a soft patch which has them playing the Colts and Commanders. If they can string a couple wins together, they could make it a bit interesting in New England, but this team isn’t going anywhere in the long run. All this win did was keep the frustrated fans at bay … at least for a week.
The Lions were de-clawed
Someone had the Lions as the No. 1 team last week … gulp …it was me! I did ask the question, do the Lions have a tough road game EVERY week? Apparently, the answer is yes. It wasn’t surprising that the Lions left Baltimore with a loss. What was surprising is that they were thoroughly annihilated. They were never in this game, losing 38-6.
The Lions face off against a very beatable Raiders team next Monday at home. This is where good teams brush off the loss and bounce back with a big win. This week’s game will say volumes as to the kind of team the Lions are; after a surprising win by the Vikings over the 49ers, their division lead has shrunk to two games.
Are the Ravens the best team in the NFL?
The Ravens are sitting at 5-2, and realistically, both Kansas City and Philadelphia sitting at 6-1 are better, but a case can be made for the Ravens. They handily beat the previously one-loss Lions, and have their dynamic QB Lamar Jackson playing like his former MVP-self. And, as great as their offense is, the Ravens are currently the only team in the league whose defense hasn’t allowed 100 poitns.
Are the Jaguars the best team in the NFL?
Similar to the Ravens, the Jaguars are sitting at 5-2 and are playing a solid brand of football on both sides of the ball. They went to London 1-2 and have now won four games in a row, with only Kansas City having a longer current winning streak (six games).
They have the QB in Trevor Lawrence, the RB in Travis Etienne, the TE in Evan Engram, and the WRs in Christian Kirk and Calvin Ridley. And they have the perfect HC in Doug Pederson, who’s been there before. The defense is a tad suspect, but they should have enough to at least win the division and get at least one home game … the question is, will it be in Jacksonville or London?
The Chiefs and Eagles are right where they belong
There are two 6-1 teams in the league, and they are the two teams that faced off in last year’s Super Bowl. The cream is rising to the top. The Chiefs have won six games in a row, and the Eagles just won a signature game against the high-flying Dolphins, beating them rather handily.
With the Bills faltering in the AFC and the Bengals only sitting at 3-3 outside the playoffs at this time, it’s looking like the Dolphins and Ravens are the only potential speedbumps for the Chiefs on their way to another Super Bowl apperance.
With the Lions looking like the Lions on Sunday and the 49ers looking rather pedestrian the last two weeks, it’s also looking like everything is opening up for the Eagles to make a return trip to the Super Bowl. We may see what could be a very entertaining rematch.
The Colts got robbed
It’s an annual theme, and it’s a common one, but it has to be said. The officiating this year has been downright awful. And with the heavy influence of sports gambling, these games need to be beyond reproach. The Colts were flat-out robbed on Sunday in Indianapolis. In their last drive, the Browns needed a TD to take the lead, and penalty after penalty was called to keep the drive going. One pass interference call was so egregious that the pass was literally at the back wall, completely uncatchable. Something is going to have to be done, or the integrity of the game will absolutely be called into question.
A nice start for the Bears rookie QB
He wasn’t great, but for his first NFL start, Tyson Bagent played the right kind of game and managed it perfectly. He completed 21 of 29 passes with a TD and no interceptions. He only threw for 162 yards, but he did just enough to open up the running game. The team ran for 173 yards, with D’Onta Foreman getting two TDs on the ground. The Bears are only 2-5 and going nowhere this season, but with Justin Fields on the shelf, it would be a nice problem to find another QB to develop.
Atlanta RB Bijan Robinson wasn’t listed on the injury report but was definitely ailing with an illness, only touching the ball once this week. For the Browns, QB Deshaun Watson started the game despite his wonky shoulder. After a big hit that forced him to leave the game under concussion protocols, he was cleared but did not return. And possibly most alarming was Jalen Hurts’ knee injury against the Dolphins. He finished the game and is seemingly alright, but there were many nervous moments in Philly. After the game, he was asked if he was ok, and he responded, “I hope so.” Losing him would be a devastating blow for Philly’s Super Bowl aspirations.