What can I say about NFL week 9?
No Tom Brady. Bye, not suspended again.
My Falcons showed up on a short week and spanked some divisional ass.
And Cleveland was scored on by every single member of the Dallas offense from what I could tell.
Let’s get to all the winners and losers as the second half of the 2016 season is a wrap except for Monday Night Football. I fully expect Russell Wilson to throw for 622 yards on MNF now that I have dropped him from my fantasy roster.
NFL Grown Man of the Week: Latavius Murray slashed up the Denver defense for 3 TDs on his way to a 114-yard night. Dude made fantasy owners very happy with 30 points in fake football arenas across the country.
Winner: Melvin Gordon is the highest scoring player in fantasy play so far in week 9. This kid was considered a bust in his rookie year of 2015. Given space to move this year, he has shown why he was taken in the first round by the Chargers. He racked up nearly 200 yards on the ground and another 65 receiving just for the hell of it.
Loser: The Bucs are down to using scout team running backs. I would feel sorry for them, but as long as it helped my Falcons get the win on TNF, I’ll sleep just fine. By the way, Earl Campbell wouldn’t have helped the Bucs much in this one with Matt Ryan dicing up the Tampa defense. Campbell can’t play cornerback anyway, plus he’s like 60 years old.
Winner: Mark Ingram may not be the most exciting back in the NFL. Honestly, he’s down right boring to watch most days. But throw him, or any breathing athlete, in there against San Francisco’s defense and damage will be done. The Niners gave up 158 to Ingram, who can go back to being average next week versus Denver.
Loser: Anyone who had to sit through L.A. and Carolina. These two teams do know the object is to score points right? Jeff Fisher does know he has the option to bench Case Keenum right? Carolina knows they are defending NFC Champs right?
Winner: Matt Ryan is the front runner for MVP at this point. He impressed the nation on Thursday night with 4 TD passes. Just 9 balls hit the ground out of 35 Ryan passes. The Kyle Shanahan offense looked to be a bad fit in 2015, but 2016 has been a work of art between coordinator and QB.
Loser: Blair Walsh doesn’t need me to pile on him after missing a PAT and having a FG blocked against the Lions. He’s sick of the locker room questions and wants to be left alone. He has no good answers for reporters. Well, Vikings fans are sick of him missing easy kicks and costing them big games. So he best start making them in week 10, if he is lucky enough to still be a Viking by the weekend.
Winner: The entire Dallas offense was clicking. Of course. They were playing the still winless Browns. Jason Witten, who many fans thought retired after week 2, even lit up the fantasy scoreboard. Dak had his way, and Zeke Elliot cruised to another big day before being pulled early in the 4th. The Cowboys are now tied with the Pats for best record in the league. Tony Romo should mess up this run why?
Loser: 2-6. That’s what Ben Roethlisberger’s “hero” games look like when he comes back from injury. Maybe he should take enough time to come back at 100 percent next time.
Winner: Odell Beckham JR. had a nice day versus the Eagles. He only caught four balls but took half those to the house on plays that only four or five guys would have housed. Kid is electrifying and doesn’t need any of the extra shenanigans to get noticed.
Loser: Gus Bradley is not long for NFL head coaching. He could be gone after next week. Sooner if his owner wakes up in a bad mood about Wednesday. Jacksonville has taken a major step backward from last year. They gave up big points in 2015, but at least they could pile up points on the other side of the ball. Blake Bortles has regressed and done his coach no favors.
Winner: Andrew Luck got the best of Aaron Rodgers, and it looks like the Colts are the class of their division again. Not saying much, but a healthy Luck is the difference between the putrid display of 2015 and this year’s team so far.
Loser: The Vikes have lost 3 in a row, Norv Turner left the team, and Sam Bradford looks like Sam Bradford. Fast starts do not equate into playoff runs.
Loser: Chris Boswell wraps up our loser list. This kicker had the worst onside kick attempt in history. No, really, in all of football history. I defy you to find a worse decision to one, try this soccer trick, then find worse execution of any athletic move in any sport.