The NFL off season never seems to end. We are all excited when the season returns after six months. One thing we always forget is how fast the season goes. We have now had nine weeks in the NFL season.
Let’s have a look at how the events of the gameweek took place in week 9.
A Good Weekend For The Rams On Their Bye Week
The Los Angeles Rams lost to the Miami Dolphins in week 8 but had a bye week in week 9.
The Rams didn’t play but their division chances have been boosted without even playing. All three division rivals lost on the weekend. The San Francisco 49ers were beaten heavily by the Green Bay Packers, losing 34-17. They were 31-3 down at the start of the fourth quarter.
The Seattle Seahawks lost just their second game of the season, being beaten 44-34 by the Buffalo Bills, with quarterback Russell Wilson having his worst game of the season.
The Arizona Cardinals lost 34-31 to the Miami Dolphins in one of the games of the weekend.
This now means that in the NFC West, rather than the Rams being two wins behind Seattle, they are still one win behind and are also on the same wins as the Cardinals with the same games played.
This is huge for the Rams as this still gives them a good chance to go far in the division.
Sean McVay’s side failed to make the playoffs last season despite reaching the Super Bowl the season before.
McVay has seen his reputation lessened in recent times. Reaching the postseason in the toughest division in the league would send out a message that he is still the head coach we all thought he was.
Offensive Player Of The Week: Dalvin Cook (Minnesota Vikings)
Once again it’s the Minnesota running back that wins the award. He has been the best player of the week for a second week in a row. I was tempted to give this to Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen after he threw for 415 passing yards three touchdowns and a 81.6% completion percentage (31 from 38. However, you cannot look past Dalvin Cook.
In the 34-20 win over the Detroit Lions, Cook ran for 206 rushing yards from 22 carries (9.4 yards a carry) and two touchdowns.
Dalvin Cook is leading a charge towards MVP consideration. He has simply been excellent this season and if the Minnesota Vikings are to make the playoffs, Cook will be the reason for this.
Defensive Player Of The Week: Trey Hendrickson (New Orleans Saints)
My vote this week goes to the New Orleans Saints defensive end. The Saints humilated their division rivals the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38-3. Tom Brady suffered the heaviest defeat of his career in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ loss to the New Orleans Saints. This has had huge implications on the division. The Saints now top the NFC South ahead of the Bucs. They also have a game in hand.
Hendrickson had a great day, recording three tackles and crucially two sacks. This helped the Saints on their way to dominating Tampa Bay. This may have potentially set the tone for the rest of the season. The Saints beat the Bucs in week one, which means that Saints have the tie breaker won.
Elsewhere In The League
The Baltimore Ravens got back to winning ways, with a 24-10 win over the Indianapolis Colts.
The Kansas City Chiefs and Carolina Panthers played out a thriller, with the former taking home the win, beating Carolina 33-31 despite being 14-3 down during the second quarter.
The Pittsburgh Steelers survived a scare to remain unbeaten in their 24-19 win over the Dallas Cowboys. The Steelers were 19-9 down at the start of the fourth quarter and it was looking likely that they were going to lose in shocking fashion.
However, the Steelers turned it around with fourth quarter touchdowns from wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster and tight end Eric Ebron. If they are to go 16-0 then this game will be shown as a vital win along the way.
The Chargers once again lost in heartbreaking fashion, losing 31-26 to the Las Vegas Raiders. The Chargers thought they had won it with a touchdown on the last play of the game, before it was deemed an incomplete pass. The Atlanta Falcons finally didn’t blow a lead, despite their best attempts in doing so.