Week five in the NFL left just one team unbeaten. That lone 5-0 team also separated itself from the League as the best defense known to mankind.
Yes, Minnesota’s defense has to be considered above even the defending Super Bowl Champion Denver Broncos.
The Purple People Eaters were not the only winners in week five. There were plenty of individuals that stood out as we get into the meat of the regular season.
Let’s dive into the winners, and the losers who make the winners look all that much better.
NFL Grown Man of the Week: The entire Vikings defense has to get credit for being the most dominant force in week five. Brock Osweiler tasted four sacks, and the Texans managed just 59 yards on the ground in this no-contest.
Winner: Shady McCoy went off for Buffalo like he did back in the day as an Eagle. He is still capable of games like these, but they are not as frequent of course. Not many backs can get you 150 yards on just 18 carries, even on their best day.
Loser: Cleveland quarterbacks past, present, and future. The winless Browns have gone through four QBs in five weeks due to injuries. And number five, Charlie Whitehurst, got banged up versus the Patriots as well. So who knows what average Joe the team will run out there in week six.
Winner: Tom Brady had a big day in his return. Of course he did. He’s Tom Brady. The narrative has been that he would come back full of piss and vinegar, in order to give the middle finger to Goodell for the suspension. The fact is Tom Brady plays all out, no matter what. DeflateGate may have pissed the guy off, but this type game was gonna happen anyway. He was playing the hapless Browns after all.
Loser: Will Fuller has been a pass-catching sensation this year. But the rookie wideout met his match versus the Vikes and only wound up with one catch for four yards. Welcome to the NFL rook.
Winner: Martellus Bennett snagged two touchdowns from Tom Brady, and the big tight end appears to be a nice compliment to Gronk. We could see another year of double threat tight ends from the Pats like they had back before Aaron Hernandez decided to start murdering folks, allegedly.
Loser: Denver’s rookie quarterback Paxton Lynch had a rough start to his NFL career. He went down with six sacks at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons. And his Broncos tasted defeat for the first time this year.
Winner: Vic Beasley of the Falcons did what the ATL has begged for since he first suited up for Arthur Blank’s club. He got after the QB with reckless abandon, making life miserable for Paxton Lynch. Beasley finished with 3.5 sacks.
Loser: The NFL is worse off for the four games missed by Tom Brady. No matter what spin the League puts on DeflateGate, it was a waste of money and time. It also robbed NFL fans of four games from one of the greatest of all time. I’m just glad the situation is over.
Winner: Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman are dual beasts out of the backfield. These two Atlanta runners can beat you on the ground and in the air. They made it look easy against the second best defense in the League on Sunday. They accounted for 285 total yards and both Falcons’ touchdowns.
Loser: The Miami Dolphins are terrible. Is Ndamukong Suh still on this team? And if so, does he still play defense? They made Marcus Mariota look like Russell Wilson and gave up 121 yards to DeMarco Murray, as the Fins dropped to 1-4.
Winner: Larry Fitzgerald had a typical big game in primetime on TNF, even with a backup tossing the ball around. He and David Johnson ran over the 49ers defense to account for 24 points on the night. Cards fans won’t get too amped for a win over the woeful Niners, but 2-3 is better than 1-4.
Loser: Carson Wentz finally knows how it feels to throw a pick in the NFL, and how a loss feels. His Eagles got clipped by Detroit in a close one, where the rookie played well once again, but turned the ball over late in the game.
Winner: The talking heads got what they wanted on Sunday when Ezekiel Elliott got off for Dallas. He has been slowly improving each week, and he had his best game as a pro this week. He trounced Cincinnati’s defense for 8.9 yards per carry on the way to 134 rushing yards.
Loser: Holders should never be mentioned in any form of sporting news. Unless they screw up in a big way. So congrats to San Diego’s holder, who cost his team the chance to tie the game up late. All you have to do is catch a short snap and hold the ball for the damn kicker! Too much to ask for Mr. Drew Kaser out of Strongsville, OH. Kaser also helped his team out with a booming punt of 16 yards in this loss.