Biggest Meltdowns of NFL Week 7
Week 7 of the NFL season has come and gone except for the Monday Night Massacre taking place tonight in Jacksonville. This weekend had its fair share of excitement, letdowns, and teams forgetting to show up at all. This week, the Colts really are that bad, the Titans may not be ready to take the AFC South, the Raiders played gracious host to the Chiefs, the Chargers spent the last two minutes trying to come up with cutting remarks for the postgame handshake, and the Church of Tebow gets founded in Miami. Come for the disappointment, stay for the sad looking athletes!
5. Things are so bad for Indy, Dan Orlovsky is seeing playing time
The winter is going to be incredibly cold and bleak for Indianapolis. The last few weeks, the Colts have been losing, but the losses have been competitive. They nearly rallied against Pittsburgh, were within a touchdown of Tampa, blew a late lead to Kansas City, and was close in the fourth quarter against Cincinnati. Surely, eventually, this team would figure it out, keep playing teams close, and sneak away with a victory. A lot of people thought maybe this would be their chance to steal one. The Saints were coming off a disappointing performance in Tampa, where Drew Brees threw three interceptions and their free agent center acquisition Olin Kreutz decided to retire on Friday. The door was open for the Colts to shock the world…but then the game started and New Orleans quickly put an end to that.
Drew Brees was throwing the ball like there wasn’t a defense on the field, finishing with 325 yards and five touchdowns, while only throwing four incompletions. That’s right, Brees threw more touchdowns than incompletions. Curtis Painter couldn’t hit water if he were falling out of a boat, and was so bad, the team turned to Dan Orlovsky…by choice. Watching this team, it’s difficult to remember that they set the record for consecutive seasons with ten or more victories, but they are doing a great job for Peyton’s bid to become the first player to not play a game in a season and win the MVP. The 62-7 demolition set franchise records for points scored and margin of victory for the Saints and points allowed and margin of defeat for the Colts. But anytime you choose to put Dan Orlovsky in, you know it’s got to be historically terrible.
4. Did you know that Arian Foster played for the Texans? The Titans forgot…
With the Peyton-less Colts floundering and winless at the bottom of the division, the AFC South was open for whoever could step up and claim it. The Jaguars are still the Jaguars, so they were already mathematically eliminated, so that left Houston and Tennessee to battle it out for AFC South supremacy, at least until Peyton comes back next year. With the resurgent play of Matt Hasselbeck, and the pieces finally seeming to come together in Houston, this game felt like a preview of who might come out on top and represent the South in the AFC playoffs. After Sunday’s 41-7 drubbing, it’s pretty clear it’s Houston’s race to lose.
Arian Foster led the Texans’ offensive clinic, rushing for 115 yards and two touchdowns while also catching 5 passes for 119 yards and another touchdown. The Texans defense put on a clinic of their own holding Chris Johnson under two yards per carry and only 18 yards on the day and intercepting Matt Hasselbeck twice. It will take an epic Houston Texan style meltdown at the end of the year for the South to go to someone other than the Texans.
3. Carson Palmer hasn’t figured out which jersey color he’s throwing to, yet. Kyle Boller has no excuse
Things fell apart quickly and completely for the Oakland Raiders against their division rival Kansas City Chiefs. The Chargers had already lost (more on that later), which opened the door for the Raiders to pull into first place in the AFC West going into their bye week. Instead, Darren McFadden left the game early with a sprained foot and the Raider quarterbacks combined to throw 6 interceptions in a 28-0 shutout loss. Carson Palmer and Hue Jackson agreed that Palmer wasn’t ready yet to handle the offense, so Kyle Boller got the start and immediately started throwing the ball to the visiting Chiefs, including a pick-six to Kendrick Lewis. After only 61 yards and three interceptions, Palmer started looking like maybe he wasn’t so unprepared, so he replaced Boller…and picked up right where he left off. Palmer finished 8 of 21 for 116 yards and 3 interceptions. The offense looked lost and impotent without McFadden, so they hope the bye week will allow him to heal up, because the team wasted a good effort by the Raider defense, who got two interceptions of their own off Matt Cassel. With the extra week, the silver and black hope Palmer picks up the offense better than he did for this game, or else Jackson’s proclamation of “greatest trade EVER” is going to get harder and harder to defend.
2. Norv Turner gets his late-game blundering in early this year
The talk leading into this game was about Rex Ryan’s statements guaranteeing that he would have had a couple Super Bowl championships if he had been hired for the Chargers job over Norv Turner several years ago. Turner fired back and the war of words was started. Apparently, the time it took Norv and the Chargers to come up with their comeback that they weren’t able to get in their two-minute drill practice in this week. The Chargers came out fast, and built a 21-10 lead at halftime. However, two interceptions by Philip Rivers and three touchdown catches by former ward of the state Plaxico Burress led to 17 unanswered points by the Jets and a 27-21 victory.
The Chargers had a chance with 1:30 to go to mount a last comeback attempt, but the urgency of the situation seemed to be lost on the Chargers offense. After a few dumpoff passes by Rivers, he ended up throwing it away on 4th down, turning it over and effectively ending the game. After the game, it turns out Rivers didn’t realize it was 4th down, and several Chargers discounted the Jets efforts saying the the Chargers beat the Chargers and New York had nothing to do with it. Those sour grapes led Rex Ryan to Ron Burgundy the visiting Chargers when he told them, “Stay classy, San Diego.”
1. The Dolphins collapse subjects the rest of us to Tebow-Elway comparison for rest of season.
Thanks a lot, Miami. For 55 minutes, it looked like the ‘Tim Tebow experiment’ would happily and quickly die away and the Broncos could draft a new quarterback of the future with their top 5 pick in the 2012 draft. Through 3 quarters, Tebow had thrown for less than 30 yards and the Broncos net passing yards totaled 2. The Dolphins were only slightly less terrible on offense, holding a 6-0 lead going into the fourth quarter. Then the Dolphins scored an offensive touchdown in the fourth for the first time this season and extended their lead to 15-0 with about five minutes to play. Tony Sparano was prepping for his first Gatorade bath of the season, until Tim Tebow remembered that the point of offense is to move the ball forward.
In the last two drives for Denver, Tebow went 9 of 14 for 120 yards, two touchdowns, and ran in a two-point conversion to tie the game and send it to overtime where Matt Prater eventually won it with a 52-yard field goal. Tebow finished under 50% on his completion percentage, but didn’t have any turnovers and was able to extend some plays and make others using his legs, rushing for 65 yards. With his rally, he ties John Elway in Bronco history for rallies of 13 points or more with two (Tebow rallied from 13 down last year against Houston). The Church of Tebow most certainly had its foundations already poured before Sunday, but the collapse of the Dolphins will undoubtedly pave the way for the walls and roof to go up post-haste. However, unless Tebow continues to pull miracles out in the fourth quarter, the Broncos will probably still be picking his replacement in top ten in next year’s draft.