NFL Week 5

Great day of ball.

Jim Rome
October 12, 2020 - 10:37 am
Patrick Mahomes

USA Today

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I have to be straight: looking at the matchups, I did not think that was going to be an amazing NFL Sunday. Or even a great or even good NFL Sunday. Ehhhh!! I jacked that all up! 

Because, that was one hell of an NFL Sunday, wasn’t it? There were incredible moments, like this, when Alex Smith made his return for Washington against LA.

He had not played in nearly two years. And if you saw photos of his leg at any point during the surgery process, you’d have put money on the fact that he’d never play again.  He’ll play again, I would have bet that he never walked again. Would have bet that he never would have had use of that leg again; because you can use what you don’t have, and looking at those pictures, I don’t know how he didn’t lose that stick altogether. And not just my words, his as well.

As he told ESPN earlier this year, he spent an extended period of time under heavy sedation and his memory of what followed isn’t clear, but “[the] next thing I remember is waking up several weeks later faced with the decision of amputation or limb salvage at that point."

Amputation or limb salvage. Notice what not part of that equation was: putting on the pads, running around and NFL field and making plays and taking shots. But that’s exactly what happened with Alex Smith yesterday. And it was incredible to see. And truly amazing and truly inspiring.

And as great as that moment was, Dak Prescott’s injury was that bad. It was so bad that it gets its own take, but having to deal with the high of Smith’s return and the low of Prescott’s injury on the same day was too much drama.

Speaking of too much drama, how about the Houston Texans winning their first game of the year and their first game without BOB? And how about Jacksonville doing everything they could to help in that process with this play call on fourth and 1 from the Houston 8-yard line?

DUUUUVALLLLL…what are you doooooo-inngggggg?

What was worse – the call or the execution? Tie for last. 

But credit to Houston, I guess, for getting a win with their interim coach. And now, Atlanta will get the chance to do that as well, because the Falcons fired head coach Dan Quinn and GM Thomas Dimitroff after yesterday’s loss dropped them to 0-5.

I hate to see guys get fired, but in this case, it had to be done. This is a team that was going backwards. They got hammered by a rebuilding Panthers team and there is no sign of things turning around on its own anytime soon. You know Falcons owner Arthur Blank looked at his coach Dan Quinn, and then looked at Carolina’s young coach Matt Ruhle and how he has already shot adrenaline into them and that franchise even in the midst of a pandemic and thought to himself, I need to get me one of those. Just as he probably thought to himself, Quinn’s a good enough, just not a good enough coach, and Kyle Shanahan is the reason we went to the Super Bowl, not Quinn.  Speaking of the Super Bowl:

Yesterday, was also a rough day for last year’s Super Bowl teams, Kansas City and San Francisco. KC had the Las Vegas Raiders come into their house and bully them. The Raiders had lost seven straight in KC, but that ended yesterday as Derek Carr lit up the KC secondary for nearly 350 yards and three touchdowns.

Don’t let the final score fool you, that wasn’t a one-score game. Late in the fourth quarter, the Raiders were up 40-24 on the champs, and Derek Carr was outplaying the Phenom, Patrick Mahomes.   And you know Raider Mike was losing his dome and blowing up the Raider message boards.  And trying to get Mike Mayock on the phone.   

If that was surprising, then what Miami did was stunning. The Dolphins came out to the west coast and absolutely cold-cocked San Francisco 43-17. Let me repeat that again: Miami 43, San Francisco 17.

The Dolphins were up 30-7 at halftime. It was so bad, Jimmy Garoppolo was taken out of the game in the second half.

And Ryan Fitzpatrick was doing what he does, just playing sandlot ball  with his boys, running around pulling plays out his ass, and having good ol time, to the tune of 350 yards and three touchdowns. You know like he’s done on about 100 other Sundays for 100 other teams. Difference is, he had a defense to back up yesterday; one that forced three turnovers, had five sacks, and held the 49ers to under 260 yards for the game. What an incredible performance from Miami and what a disaster from the 49ers.

And no, let’s not freak out and say that Jimmy G is about to lose his job to CJ Beathard.  At least not today. G was dinged the last couple of weeks; the entire team has been ravaged by injuries and yes, they got worked by the Dolphins who had to come across the country to do so. But the Niners have a huge one this week against the Rams. A huge opportunity and a huge chance to change the conversation. So I wouldn’t be looking to smash the panic button yet with these guys. But best to know where it is, just in case.

That said, if there was a panic button to hit, the Eagles should’ve been slamming it yesterday every time the ball went to Steelers rookie Chase Claypool. He had himself a day and the Eagles had themselves a nightmare.

I don’t know. I mean, what do I know. I’ll tell you what I know! I know enough to know maybe you put a freaking body on number 11, Philly fan. That’s what I know! But Philly couldn’t stop him in the game and nobody could stop him online afterwards. He chased that with two perfect twitter posts: one that was a pic of him with Roethlisberger that read: 7/11…always open

And then one with his head photoshopped onto Tom Brady’s body with Brady holding up four fingers from Thursday night. Well played, big dude… very well played.

Speaking of playing, and more specifically, playing yourself, how about the Minnesota Vikings last night. They went to Seattle and had the Seahawks on the ropes. Actually, they weren’t on the ropes, they had the Seahawks beaten. Until Mike Zimmer made some really strange calls down the stretch.

Like kicking the extra point up four. And then going for it on fourth down when a field goal would’ve made it an eight point game.

I know the numbers and the analytics say to go for it there, but damn, that was a strange call. And that’s not a matter of Monday morning quarterbacking either. My entire text thread thumbed the exact same thing the second it happened, namely, THE HELL IS THIS GUY DOING??!  And especially when you have Russell Freaking Wilson on the other sideline.   Because you knew what was going to happen next.  And how did you know?  Because you had Russell Freaking Wilson on the other sideline.  And Russ was going to lead the Seahawks on a game-winning drive that would rip your heart out.

And that’s exactly what happened, capped off by Russell Wilson finding his guy DK Metcalf on fourth down.

Russ didn’t look like Russ for most of the game, but when it mattered most, he was there. And that set off this celebration in the locker room with old man Peter Carroll completely losing his bleep.

Oh, and one more thing. Last, but definitely not least, the Cleveland Browns are 4-1. And no, we’re not doing that junk about them having that record for the first time in 26 years. Because the past is prologue. We’re not talking about the old days with the Browns, we’re talking about the new days. We’re talking about the present.

And the present is that the Browns are 4-1 and they, and I, will be accepting your apologies right now. I would never say I told you so, but I told you so. And now you can tell me, and them, I’M SORRY. SO SO SORRY.