NFL Week 7: What was Mike Vrabel thinking?

Week 7 of the NFL season is in the rear view mirror. The defending Super Bowl champs continue to struggle with a monumental collapse. In England, what were the Titans thinking at the end of their game against the Chargers? An unexpected hero emerged for the Lions against the Dolphins and who made the plays of the week?

Sound and Fury

These are those no-name guys that come out of nowhere to put up ridiculous stat lines but immediately fade into irrelevance. These are guys that are on no one’s radar in fantasy. Hence, they’re their significant fantasy output typically helps no one.

In the Lions’ 32-21 win over the Dolphins, Matthew Stafford threw two touchdown passes. No, he is not the “sound and fury” guy, but his target on both touchdowns, Michael Roberts is. Roberts, seldom used tight end, was listed as doubtful for the game and entered with only five career receptions since the Lions drafted him in the fourth round last season. While he had a modest three receptions for 48 yards, his two touchdowns were completely unexpected and were monumental in the Lions’ victory.

WTF Moment

Clearly this goes to the Tennessee Titans in their 20-19 loss against the Chargers at Wembley Stadium in London, England. Down most of the game, the Titans mounted a 13 play, 89 yard drive at the end of the game, culminating in a 1-yard touchdown reception by Luke Stocker from Marcus Mariota with 31 seconds to play. Conventional wisdom tells you to kick the extra point and take your chances in overtime. After all, the Titans won in overtime against the Eagles earlier in the season. But no, the Titans inexplicably line up and unsuccessfully attempt to win the game in regulation. Travel across the Atlantic Ocean and don’t trust your team enough to compete and win an overtime. This qualifies for the WTF moment of the week.

Revenge Game

Although there didn’t appear to be any hard feelings when Torrey Smith was traded from the Eagles to the Panthers over the off-season, this qualifies and is particularly relevant due to the unbelievable outcome to the game. Smith had a solid game with 4 receptions for 61 yards included a couple of key receptions late in the game. He didn’t find the endzone, but helped the Panthers come from a 17-0 deficit in the fourth quarter to win, 21-17. The collapse by the Eagles was the first time they blew a 17-point four quarter lead since 1985 and only the third time in 156 instances in their history.

Best of the week

In the game between the Titans and the Chargers, Tennessee got on the scoreboard first with an opening drive field goal. It took Philip Rivers and the Chargers a blink of an eye to respond. On the first play from scrimmage, Rivers hit Tyrell Williams down the left sideline on a 75 yard bomb to put the Chargers up 7-3.

 

The Patriots remained hot, improving to 5-2 with a 38-31 win over the Bears. Cordarrelle Patterson provided a spark with the Patriots down 17-7 with a 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. With the kick return game having become less of a factor around the league, Patterson’s return was even more impressive.

In Arizona, the Broncos defense dominated the woeful Cardinals, returning two interceptions for touchdown. The first just a minute into the game was a 20-yarder by Todd Davis and the other was a 53-yarder late in the first quarter by Chris Harris, Jr to put the Broncos up 21-3. Denver never look back, pounding the Cardinals, 45-10.

Getting off to a quick start against the Jets, the Vikings’ Kirk Cousins connected with Adam Thielen with a 34-yard touchdown pass less than two minutes into the game. The ball was nearly perfectly thrown as Jets’ cornerback Darryl Roberts had excellent coverage. The touchdown set the tone of the game as the Vikings dominated, 37-17.

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