1. Seattle’s loss in New Orleans isn’t earth-shattering. But the fact the offense couldn’t do better than 20 points against the Saints’ terrible defense is not good for Pete Carroll’s bunch.
2. Oakland is 5-0 on the road for the first time since the 70s. That offense is very very good.
3. Ok, enough kidding around about the Browns. How many games can they pull defeat from the jaws of victory?? This looks more an more each week like a team destined to join the ’08 Lions at 0-16.
4. Atlanta has played a very tough stretch of games against playoff teams. The win over Green Bay was crucial to this team’s psyche after they collapsed last season. Might be time to really take the Falcons seriously.
5. Score zero points at home a few weeks ago against Buffalo; score 41 points against Buffalo in week 8. Safe to say Tom Brady is an upgrade over an injured rookie third stringer.
6. Kansas City did what good teams do — beat up a bad Colts team on the road, 30-14.
7. Is there a more dysfunctional team in the NFL than the Jets? But they’ve won 2 straight and the schedule doesn’t get much harder in the weeks ahead.
8. I’m done trying to figure out the Cardinals. I’m not even going to pretend to understand what’s going wrong in the desert.
9. At 2-5, I’m pretty sure Carolina’s win did not save their season; but that’s not a division that’s completely gotten away from them quite yet.
10. There goes Houston, again — doing just enough to keep fans hopeful. A home win over the Lions should not be hailed as some great victory. But now at 5-3, people will resume talking about how this is a playoff team and one of the top teams in the AFC.
11. DeMarco Murray has provided Tennessee with a ground game that is keeping them competitive. At 4-4, the Titans sit a game back of the first place Texans — don’t be surprised if this young team sticks around for a while.
12. Green Bay’s mediocre play wouldn’t really concern me too much because they’re talented enough to flip the switch at any given time — usually. What is concerning right now is that the Pack is losing to playoff teams that will probably be there in January.
13. Jamison Crowder, Jordan Reed, Vernon Davis, DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon — how does Kirk Cousins not sling it for 400-plus yards every single week??!!
14. Cincinnati is now 3-4-1 and I’m really not sure how good or bad they are. I want to say they’re better than that record — the offense has the firepower.
15. Alright, maybe Philly isn’t that great and Dallas should not have had to work so hard to win that game. But this is the NFL and that was a primetime, divisional rivalry — and if you come away with a win, it counts the same as a blowout win. Dam Prescott continues to show his moxie and Ezekiel Elliott is not playing like a rookie.
16. After back-to-back disappointing losses, the shine has come off Minnesota. The offensive line cannot protect Sam Bradford and the defensive — which has been stout — got gashed by a rookie running back at Soldier Field.
17. Rookie running back Jordan Howard showed off some of his skills on a primetime stage against one of the league’s very best defenses, going for 153 yards with the Viking defenders unable to slow him down.
18. Thank you, Indianapolis, for not bothering to show up Sunday at home in a game that was “gettable”.
19. The Jaguars are hoping a change at OC will give Blake Bortles and company a spark. This is one of the worst scoring teams in the league — after a ’15 season where the offense was one of the most explosive.
20. Denver’s defense did the job, again. No matter what’s happening (or what’s not happening) with the offense, the defense never takes a game off.
21. Getting lost in the disappointing defeat at Mile High was that Chargers second-year RB Melvin Gordon crossed the 100-yard rushing plateau — the first back to do so against that Bronco defense in 22 games. Gordon’s had a very good bounce-back sophomore season.
22. Up, down, up, down. The Bills looked like they were ready to move on the Pats after a 4-game win streak a couple weeks back. Since, they’ve gotten hammered by the Dolphins and Patriots and are back to a 4-4 reality.
23. The Saints proved that not every win they get has to be some explosive 30-plus point outburst from the offense. Sunday’s home victory over the still very good Seattle defense was driven by efficient passing and a sound run game. Hope you enjoyed it if you like that kinda thing — because it doesn’t happen too often with Drew Brees and those receivers.
24. The season has already been a success for the Eagles. They’ve found out the Carson Wentz sure appears to be their starting QB for years to come; head coach Doug Pederson has wiped the remnants of the Chip Kelly Experiment out of the building; and the team has gelled and played with some nastiness, especially on the defensive side of the ball.
25. Injuries have a way of eventually taking their toll on a team — even if the wins are still coming. Detroit found that out. Too many defensive holes to continue rolling along. It happens.
26. Tampa has proven how inconsistent they are from week to week. Many of the pieces seem to be there, but they’re not ready to be a division contender yet. Had the Bucs beaten the Raiders, I might be singing a different tune.