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#pounditThursday, November 26, 2020

5 biggest disappointments of NFL Week 4

Mike McCarthy

After some questions about how much of a schedule the NFL would play in Week 4, a mostly full slate of games went ahead on Sunday. The schedule was slightly reduced, but there was no shortage of excitement and drama. There was also plenty of disappointment, too, as some teams and players with high expectations fell flat.

Here are five big disappointments from NFL Week 4.

Dallas Cowboys

What is happening in Dallas? Nothing good, as they got absolutely torched by Baker Mayfield, Odell Beckham, and the Cleveland Browns. Turnovers played a huge role — the Cowboys fumbled on back-to-back drives in the second quarter, setting up short touchdown drives for Cleveland both times. The big concern is a “soft” defense that gave up 508 yards and 49 points to the Browns, even as the offense produced at a high level. The Cowboys are now 1-3, and their season needs to turn around quickly.

Detroit Lions

The Lions have had a double-digit lead in all three of their losses this year. Even when they’re up, it’s started to feel inevitable that things will turn on them. That happened again on Sunday against the Saints. The Lions jumped out to a 14-0 lead. Then the Saints scored 35 unanswered points. Matt Patricia appears incapable of turning things around, and the team can’t play 60 full minutes. A coaching change feels inevitable.

Kenyan Drake, Cardinals

The Cardinals were generally disappointing on Sunday, losing to a Panthers team without Christian McCaffrey. Drake is definitely a concern at this point, though. He was expected to be the lead back in an explosive offense. Instead, he has one touchdown and was held to 35 yards on 13 carries Sunday. Part of that was the game script going against him, but it continues a string of underwhelming performances from the running back.

Nick Foles, QB, Bears

Perhaps Foles leading the Bears to a comeback win last week raised expectations too high. He was poor on Sunday against the Colts, throwing for a modest 249 yards with an interception. His lone touchdown came in garbage time, and was too late to make any difference in the outcome. Foles hasn’t actually won a start since 2018. He remains a superior option for the Bears than Mitchell Trubisky, but he’s still not a leading NFL starting quarterback.

Houston Texans

The dire predictions some made when DeAndre Hopkins was traded away in exchange for David Johnson are coming true. The Texans’ offense is a mess. Deshaun Watson doesn’t know what to do, his offensive line is not protecting him, and Johnson has not looked like his old self any more than he did in Arizona. The Vikings have been brutal defensively this season, but the Texans still only came up with a modest 386 yards. That’s not good enough, and it suggests that it wasn’t just tough opposition that was causing the Texans to go winless.

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