Week 7 of the NFL season brought us more lopsided scores than close games, and some huge games with playoff implications — such as the Cowboys’ victory over the Eagles, the Colts’ win over the Texans, and the Ravens’ win in Seattle. Many teams or individuals failed to get the job done during the week and were big disappointments.
Here’s a look at the 10 biggest disappointments of Week 7.
Melvin Gordon, RB, Chargers
The way this game went, Chargers fans are probably feeling the team may have been better off had Gordon never returned from his holdout. Gordon had just 32 yards on 16 carries. He fumbled twice, including one at the goal line to lose the game. He’s averaging just 2.25 yards per carry since his return. Worse, he’s taking valuable carries away from Austin Ekeler.
The Bears got Mitchell Trubisky back in their 36-25 loss to the Saints, but it didn’t serve as a big improvement over Chase Daniels. The game started with a safety on Chicago’s first possession, then a punt, and then a lost fumble in Bears territory. It was a 12-10 game in the second and then Chicago went totally silent. They had punts on five of their next six possessions and lost a fumble on the other. 17 total rushing yards and two lost fumbles is not a formula for success. It’s no surprise Trubisky got booed as a “welcome back” from the fans.
At least one member of the Philadelphia Eagles is frustrated with the way things have been going for the team offensively this season, but head coach Doug Pederson is a bit puzzled by the specific complaint that surfaced this week.
In an appearance on “NFL Live” Thursday afternoon, ESPN’s Josina Anderson said an anonymous Eagles player vented his frustrations to her about the team’s offense, noting that it needs to be simplified and Carson Wentz has to know when to hit his checkdowns.
“One of the things that they said is: ‘We need to make bleep simpler. Sometimes you just need to handle what is manageable.’ They said: ‘Even Peyton Manning knew when to check it down,'” Anderson revealed, according to Brandon Lee Gowton of Bleeding Green Nation.
Pederson was asked about that quote on Friday, and he told reporters it is the first time he has ever heard of a player complaining that the ball needs to be checked down more. He also said his offense is not all that complicated.
Doug Pederson said this is the first time he’s heard anyone complain that there should be MORE check downs. (As said in the anonymous ESPN report). #Eagles
— Zack Rosenblatt (@ZackBlatt) October 18, 2019
Pederson: I’ve seen the comments. Check down might not be there. Lotta factors, not on QB. You don’t like to have anonymous guys. I’m not a smart guy and I can figure out the offense. It’s not that complicated.
— Les Bowen (@LesBowen) October 18, 2019
As Anderson noted during the ESPN broadcast, Wentz has completed just 38 percent of his passes when throwing the ball 15 yards or further downfield. He also has three interceptions on those throws, which is tied for third most in the NFL. In contrast, Wentz has nine touchdowns and zero interceptions on passes that travel 10 yards or fewer downfield.
The Eagles are 3-3 and have been inconsistent through the early part of the season, but they rank ninth in the NFL with 26.8 points per game. While they’re just 20th with 349.3 total yards per game, the results haven’t exactly been awful.
Of course, Wentz is no stranger to criticism from unnamed sources within the Eagles organization. Pederson is probably more annoyed that stories like that keep coming out than he is with the actual complaint.
Carson Wentz missed several plays before halftime of the Philadelphia Eagles’ Sunday night game against the Atlanta Falcons after taking a big hit that led him to receive a concussion check.
Wentz took a big hit on a third down pass attempt with 1:51 left in the half that went incomplete.
Carson Wentz just 6-15, 47 yards, 2 INTs. QB Rating 8.9
Something is not right with him. He is way off on his throws. Maybe from this hit earlier?#Eagles
— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) September 16, 2019
Philly forced a punt and got the ball back, but it was backup Josh McCown who entered the game at quarterback. Wentz was in the medical tent on the sideline and reportedly checked for a concussion.
McCown stayed in for the first six plays of the possession. Wentz must have been medically cleared to enter the game because he ran in when Philly had a second down with 13 seconds left. He threw a pair of incompletions before Philly kicked a field goal to enter halftime down 10-6.
Wentz looked terrible in the first half. He went 6/16 for 47 yards and two interceptions.
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- Carson Wentz
Expectations are high for many NFL teams and players entering the season. Some players, though, can dream of more than just leading their team to a Super Bowl. A select few are favored to win the MVP award, recognizing a season of individual greatness.
This award usually goes to a quarterback, and it usually goes to someone on a winning team. Neither of these are prerequisites, of course, but they’re simply the most likely outcome. So which five players are the early favorites to claim the award? Here are some names to consider.
5) Baker Mayfield, QB, Browns
Mayfield’s rookie year made everyone salivate over his ceiling. It’s only a matter of question whether he can reach it. In his first NFL year, he threw 27 touchdowns and 14 interceptions with 3,725 yards passing. The addition of Odell Beckham Jr. has led to greater expectations of the Browns this year, and Mayfield will be looked to as a leader. If the Browns do what many believe they are capable of, Mayfield could shoot to the forefront of the MVP debate in his second season.
4) Carson Wentz, QB, Eagles
Health will be vital for Wentz, who hasn’t played 16 games since 2016. He may well have won an MVP in 2017 if not for a season-ending injury. The Eagles should be contenders again in 2019, and Wentz has shown that as long as he’s healthy, he’s capable of putting up huge numbers. Despite two injury-plagued seasons, he’s hit 3,000 yards both times. If he can play all 16 games, 4,000 yards and 40 touchdowns are within the realm of possibility. Those are MVP-like numbers.
3) Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers
Rodgers played through a knee injury most of last season and was not his usual accurate self. Though he threw for 25 touchdowns and just two interceptions, his 62.3 completion percentage was his second-lowest career mark since taking over as the Packers’ starter. Green Bay stumbled to a 6-9-1 season that cost Mike McCarthy his job. Now it’s up to Matt LaFleur to bring out the best in Rodgers and see if the quarterback can return to the MVP form he displayed in 2011 and 2014. We’re envisioning a major improvement from last season.
2) Drew Brees, QB, Saints
Brees actually posted the worst numbers of his Saints career last year, falling short of 4,000 yards for the first time. He would’ve made it had he played in all 16 games, and he still threw 32 touchdowns, suggesting that the magic is not gone. The Saints are going to be talented as ever, and they’ll lean heavily on Brees to move the offense. There’s every chance he returns to the 4,000-yard plateau while throwing a ton of touchdown passes.
1) Patrick Mahomes, QB, Chiefs
After he delivered 5,097 yards and 50 touchdowns passing last season, expectations are sky high for Mahomes in 2019. If he can do anything close to that again while leading the Chiefs to the playoffs and beyond, he has every chance of winning the award again. There’s no reason he can’t — while some regression may be inevitable, he has all the tools to be elite and the weapons around him to put up truly outrageous stat lines. For now, Mahomes is the favorite to retain his MVP award — it will take some effort and probably a step back on his part for someone to take it from him.
Carson Wentz and Nick Foles still have love for each other despite no longer being teammates.
Wentz’s Philadelphia Eagles faced Foles’ new team, the Jacksonville Jaguars, during a preseason game on Thursday night. Before the game, the two quarterbacks shared a nice embrace.
Carson Wentz and Nick Foles together again.pic.twitter.com/niMkhINBiW
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) August 15, 2019
Wentz and Foles were teammates on the Eagles the past two seasons. Wentz was in the middle of a possible MVP campaign in 2017 before tearing his ACL. Foles replaced him, went 2-1 in the regular season, and then led the team to a Super Bowl win over the Patriots, sparking somewhat of a controversy over who should be the team’s starter. The talk continued last season after Foles went 4-1 as the team’s starter in the regular season and led them to a playoff win over the Bears.
Even though there may have been some outside chatter about a quarterback controversy, there seems to be nothing but love between the two men, which is the sense we got most of the way.
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All eyes will be on Carson Wentz during Philadelphia Eagles training camp this year as the quarterback looks to show he is fully healthy from a back injury that cut his 2018 season short, but an exchange he had with a fan on Friday reminded us that there are much more important things in life than football.
Wentz had an opportunity to meet an 11-year-old fan who has had numerous health issues, and to say the interaction between the two was heartwarming would be an understatement. The boy, who has undergone 12 surgeries in his life, was overcome with emotion, and he could be heard telling Wentz “you’re my hero.”
Special moment between Carson Wentz and Giovanni Hamilton, an 11 year old who has gone through 12 surgeries in his life. Wentz is his hero. pic.twitter.com/y4eeBwWHsL
— Tim McManus (@Tim_McManus) July 26, 2019
If you want to know why sports are important, look no further than Giovanni Hamilton. The 11-year-old has had it more difficult than many of us could ever imagine, and it’s clear Wentz and the Philadelphia Eagles play a huge role in his life. Good on Wentz for taking the time to meet with him.
- Carson Wentz
The NFL has been a quarterback’s league for many years now, and teams typically go as far as their QB will take them. For franchises like the New England Patriots, that is a comforting feeling. For others like the Denver Broncos who are facing uncertain situations at the position, it leaves fans not knowing what to expect.
Like every season, there are going to be quarterbacks who exceed expectations in 2019 and those who fall well short. Here are several we believe could leave fans disappointed this upcoming season.
1. Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers
Garoppolo is working his way back from ACL surgery, which is never easy. Like we have seen countless times with quarterbacks in the past, he will likely have to work through some rust no matter how healthy he is. It should also be noted that Garoppolo was not playing all that well before he got hurt last year, as he had just five touchdown passes and three interceptions in three games.
The 49ers were linked to both Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. this offseason because they have serious question marks at the wide receiver position. They tried to address that by drafting former South Carolina star Deebo Samuel in the second round, but the questions remain. Between the time off and the inexperience around him, Garoppolo may have trouble living up to his massive contract in 2019.