Studs and Duds

NFL Studs and Duds: Week 16

We all made it through week 16. Well, only some people at least. All of the playoff teams in the NFC are decided, the only thing that can change is the NFC North champion which will be decided Sunday night between the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers. Also, the number 1 seed is still up for grabs, If the Cardinals win and the Panthers lose, the Cardinals will steal the number 1 seed from Carolina. It’s nice having a general outlook on the playoff picture in the NFC a week before the season ends, especially since all of the teams are locked in. On the other hand, the AFC still has some work to do in week 17. In order for the Steelers to go to playoffs, they must defeat the Browns and hope Rex Ryan can beat his former team, the Jets. If the Patriots win against Miami, then they will claim the number 1 seed in the AFC. If New England loses, then that opens the door for the Broncos to claim that spot if they beat the San Diego Chargers. The Colts have a very long 10-part equation which gives them a very slim of chance of winning the division. The Texans have the AFC South pretty much locked up, they control their own destiny at this point. If Houston wins, they are in the playoffs.

I think the Jets should receive a lot of credit this week considering the circumstances. If they didn’t defeat the Patriots in overtime, then their chances of making the playoffs would almost be non-existent. The fact that the Jets stepped up to the occasion against the division leading Patriots, who were boasting an impressive 12-2 record and a number 1 seed in the AFC, is impressive and deserves all of the recognition and credit in the world.

The Eagles have officially fired Chip Kelly. The sports world has been shocked since the news broke that the third year coach out of Oregon was fired one game before the season ended. Kelly tallied 26 wins and 21 losses in his three year stint in Philadelphia, which is a very decent start to a coaching career. What got him fired was that he took over the Eagles organization and brought in specific players to bring the Eagles to the playoffs. His plan didn’t exactly work out and Philly couldn’t even bring themselves to win their disastrous division. It was a great (almost) three years for the Oregon coach but as we learn time and time again, never make a guarantee that you can’t follow through on. R.I.P. Philadelphia Eagles Chip Kelly, you may be missed. 2013-2015.

Now, on to more important matters. The studs and duds of the NFL in week 16. These players either performed at levels that exceeded expectations or failed to meet them last week. Stats alone are sometimes not enough to put a particular person in this article, it can be a variety of different things. These things include performance in prime time, pressure, or how that person helped fuel or bring down their team to a loss. So here they are, the studs and duds of the NFL.

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Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins: Jordan Reed is one of the leagues most versatile and talented tight ends. His career has been riddled with injuries before and even missed two games earlier this season due to injury. Fortunately for him, Sunday was one example of why he should be mentioned as one the leagues elite at the position. Reed would put up monster numbers against the Eagles defense. The Redskins tight end would reel in 9 of his 11 targets to gain 129 yards and also add on 2 touchdowns. Reed continues to get numerous looks from quarterback Kirk Cousins and the duo seem unstoppable as they just clinched the Redskins their first division title since 2012. Likely to be rested next week before the playoffs, Reed probably won’t produce too much next week against the Dallas Cowboys.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, New York Jets: Ryan Fitzpatrick has been a very consistent quarterback for the Jets this season. He has also acquired  a large fan base along the way, sporting his grizzly beard throughout the season. It was his performance on Sunday that put him in the category as a top 10 quarterback. Against the 12-2 Patriots, Fitzpatrick was 26 for 41, threw for 296 yards and threw for three touchdowns. These are not stats that jump off the page at you but it’s how he led his team to victory under the circumstances that landed him as a stud this week. The Jets are desperately fighting for that last playoff spot with the Steelers. They were also facing arguably the best team in the NFL who also happens to be in their division, they faced the Patriots and eventually went to overtime where he led his team down field and score the winning the touchdown. It was a great week for Fitzpatrick and it didn’t go unnoticed.

Tim Hightower, New Orleans Saints: Sunday, Hightower proved that he can take over for injured Mark Ingram. Hightower would rush the ball on 27 attempts and use those carries to good use, piling on 122 yards on the ground, which averages out to 4.5 yards per carry. The Saints RB also added 2 touchdowns  on the day against the Jaguars. Hightower was also utilized in the passing game as well. He had 3 receptions that went for 47 yards. The Saints season may be over but they earned a much needed win against a thriving Jaguars team and it was helped in part from the California native. Hightower has had his share of fame in the NFL and also experienced his downs in his career but he may have found something that can get him back on track as a starter in the NFL.

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Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers: Just like I mentioned last week, Newton would not appear in this article because of his continuous and consistent elite playing ability week to week, but I also mentioned that he would only appear in this if he was a dud. This week, he was in fact, a huge and major disappointment. Newton posted his worst numbers of the season. He was 17/30, threw for 0 zero touchdowns and only threw  for 142 yards against the division rival Falcons. He did rush the ball 7 times for 46 yards and even rushed for a touchdown on the first drive of the game. That was his only highlight of the game, and if you think those stats look bad, here is how his final drive of the game went. The Panthers were working from behind with time running out in the 4th quarter and Newton took a sack and fumbled the ball that was recovered by the Falcons to inevitably, end the game, and end the Panthers perfect season. Cam and the Panthers are still 14-1 but I’m sure they will not forget the embarrassing play they produced on Sunday against Atlanta.

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers: Yet, another disappointing week for an elite QB. Roethlisberger had arguably the worst game of the season in the Steelers week 16 loss to the Ravens. Completion wise, he had a decent day, 24 for 34, but the veteran quarterback would not throw a single touchdown and would give away two interceptions to the Ravens shaky defense. Even worse, Big Ben barely threw for 200 yards, only throwing for 215 on the day. It was the 2nd to last week of the season and the Steelers needed to win on Sunday to give themselves an even better chance at making the playoffs as a wildcard. The Jets, who won on Sunday, have the edge on the Steelers now since Pittsburgh lost and now control their own destiny next week. The Steelers now have to hope that the Jets lose their season finale and that they win their final game against Cleveland. Roethlisberger needed to step up this week and because he didn’t, the Steelers may miss out on the playoffs this year. Ben Roethlisberger is undoubtedly a dud this week.

Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: It’s hard to believe that a running back who scores a touchdown can find himself a dud for the week but on Sunday, that was exactly the case for Tampa Bay RB Doug Martin. The “Muscle Hamster” started the game off very well with a four yard touchdown run, but didn’t do that much afterwards. the fourth year running back rushed the ball a total of 17 times for 49 yards, a measly 2.9 yards per carry. He was only available in the pass game once for one reception that would go for 6 yards. Unfortunately, Martin would fumble the ball twice that would both be recovered by the Bears. The Bucs only lost by 5 points and losing two possessions that quickly in the game was detrimental to the Buccaneers  on Sun day. Martin is a fantastic running back and this game was a mere bump in the road on the season. Fortunately, Tampa Bay was out of playoff contention already and this game didn’t mean too much to the Bucs season. Martin landed as a dud this week and as we have seen before, it is very easy to bounce back from a bad week.

Make sure you check out the guys over on The Andrew Powell Show presented by FanDuel which is LIVE Monday to Friday 8:00-10:00 PM ET  only on FOX Sports Radio and iHeartRadio!

*Comment down below any opinions, suggestions or questions you may have about the article. Also include who you would put in your list of studs and duds. Thank you for reading this article and be sure to share it with your friends.*

 

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NFL Studs and Duds: Week 15

Fifteen weeks down, two to go and there are many topics to talk about as we depart week 15 and head to week 16. Right now there are tight division races being played that still haven’t been decided yet. The Broncos and Chiefs have become the most interesting division foes going at it for the division title. The Chiefs are now only one game back from first place in the division. It seems like the Texans are going to run away with the division now that they defeated the Colts in Indianapolis. The Pittsburgh Steelers are two games back in the AFC North of the Cincinnati Bengals and if the Steelers win their last two games and the Bengals lose their last two games then the Steelers will probably be the AFC North champions. The ugly division race in the NFC East is finally starting to clear up. The Redskins can clinch the division with a win on Saturday against the Eagles, Philadelphia just needs to win their last two games to win the division and the Giants need to win their last two games and the Redskins to lose their last two to win that mess of a division. Very quickly, I think it should be noted that this is the first time in Houston Texans history that they defeated the Colts in Indianapolis. That’s pretty extraordinary. All the credit in the world to the Texans and the season they are having right now.

Now, we move to the studs and duds of week 15 and it’s important to keep in mind that these players don’t have to be particularly the best performer of the week or the worst. These players exceeded their weekly expectations or fell very very short of what was expected of them. So, with out further adieu, here they are!

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David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals- What can be said about David Johnson besides, “Wow”. The rookie from Northern Iowa had a career day on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles. He had 29 carries that would go for 187 yards and 3 touchdowns. Johnson averaged a whopping 6.4 yards per carry. The rookie also added 42 receiving yards on 4 receptions. He also showed his dominance as a runner by proving that he can run well with in space and break tackles as well. It’s hard to believe that this young star was slated as the third string running back at the beginning of the year, although he has shown that he can perform well as a pass catching running back throughout the season. This bright young star has a big future ahead of him if he keeps up this type of play. Regardless if Chris Johnson or Andre Ellington come back from injury, the Cardinals backfield should be stacked from here on out and should have no worries going into the playoffs.

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers- It should come as no surprise that Cam Newton is in this article as a stud, he should be in it every week, but what I try to achieve in this article is dominance as well as exceeding expectations. If expectations are high and the player does good, what is there to write about? That being said, Cam Newton is a more than deserving candidate as a Stud this week with the performance he gave on Sunday against the Giants. Newton completed 25 of his 45 pass attempts that would go for 340 yards and 5 touchdowns. He would also rush for a season high 100 yards on 8 carries, which averages 12.5 yards per carry. Cam Newton WILL win the MVP award this year and with that being said, I will more than likely leave him out of this article for the rest of the season unless he is a dud (which is unlikely) or if he happens to completely go off and accumulate 6+ total touchdowns in a week.

Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins- Kirk Cousins, like I had mentioned in other articles, is a hit or miss type of player who is able to either shine on the field or have a disastrous outing. Week 15 was a week that the young quarterback would shine. Cousins would complete 22 of his 28 passes and throw for 319 yards. He found the end-zone 4 times, 2 of which to tight end Jordan Reed, and would not throw any interceptions. It wasn’t just his arm that was on fire on Sunday, Cousins also rushed 3 times for 11 yards and 1 touchdown, increasing his total touchdowns on the day to 5. In the middle of a tight division race, Cousins has definitely stepped up and is about to lead his team to a division title. His teammates have trusted him to lead the offense and he has done so very well. He has a chance to clinch the NFC East division title on Saturday against the Eagles.

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Buck Allen, Baltimore Ravens- It pains me to see that just two weeks ago, Javorius “Buck” Allen, was a stud and now he is a dud. It’s fitting that he is a dud this week considering the high expectations he has set for himself the past couple weeks. On Sunday against the Chiefs, Allen rushed the ball 4 times for only 18 yards and even lost a fumble. He failed to have a reception in the game and failed to reach the end-zone. It was even decided that Allen would be benched for most of the game and let Terrance West play most of the snaps. Allen has a lot of potential to be good which means he will probably be able to redeem himself next week, but for now Buck will unfortunately remain a dud.

T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts- It had seemed like that after last weeks 132 yard game and the 2 touchdown performance two weeks before that, that T.Y. is finally settling in with Hasselbeck at quarterback. This past Sunday proved otherwise. Hilton was targeted 5 times and caught 3 passes for just 29 yards. It has been a very rough year for Hilton, although he’s been fairly consistent, he hasn’t had a lot of breakout type of games this year and I’m sure that T.Y. is really missing Andrew Luck right about now. Until Luck comes back from injury, it should come as no surprise if Hilton has a bad week.

Chris Ivory, New York Jets- Ivory has been a very solid running back this year, nothing too spectacular, but he has filled the role of a starting running back quite well for the New York Jets. His match up against the Cowboys on Saturday seemed like he could’ve gone off and had a field day but that was not what happened in Dallas. Ivory posted a stat line that could be argued, was one of his worst games of the year. He rushed the ball  13 times and only produced 37 yards out of it and adding on a 5 yard reception. Ivory is more than capable of turning things around, after setting the bar so high for himself in the preseason and his inconsistent hit or miss games, this performance was just bad enough to land him as a dud for the week.

**Comment down below any opinions, suggestions or questions you have about the article. Also, comment any studs or duds that you noticed from week 15 that didn’t quite make the list this week.**

 

NFL Studs and Duds: Week 14

Another week down and three more to go. At this point in the year, who could’ve guessed the division leaders right now? Now, there are always the obvious teams like the Patriots, the Broncos or the Packers but even in the NFC North, the Vikings were going into this week leading the division. Some of the teams I’m talking about are the teams in the NFC East all tied for first (Redskins, Eagles, Giants), the top 3 teams in the AFC South which consists of the Jaguars being a game out of first place held by the Colts and the Texans. It should also be noted that the Jaguars have one of the best high powered offenses in the NFL. The Jags just put up 51 points against the Colts and now it seems like they have a legitimate shot at winning the division. The AFC West, which is only a two game lead at this point, separating the 10-3 Denver Broncos and 8-5 Kansas City Chiefs. At the beginning of the season, it had seemed like the Broncos were going to run away with the division but the Chiefs, starting the season 1-5, have found a groove and have won a whopping seven games in a row. It’s not like the Chiefs have played nobody in those seven games, the Chiefs have gone 4-0 in division games and have beaten the Steelers, Bills, and Lions during that span.

The Panthers are still undefeated and it does not seem like anyone is going to stop them. they are 13-0 and there is a very high chance that they can maintain a perfect season heading into the playoffs. The rest of the teams that they will play include the New York Giants, Atlanta Falcons (Who they just beat 38-0), and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Some may argue that the Panthers have had a schedule that is considered a cake walk but how can you argue with a team that have not lost a regular season game dating back to November 30th of last season. The Panthers have been 17-0 in regular season games since then. Say what you want, 13-0 is still 13-0.

What’s happening in Denver? It’s nothing to be too alarmed about but people should take notice. Before I discuss the Broncos further it would help if I said that this year in the NFL has been a very bizarre one at the least and match-ups have continued to trick and fool us again and again. Like this one. So, how do the Broncos go from upsetting the Patriots perfect season a couple weeks ago at home, to losing an embarrassing game to the Oakland Raiders? Statistically, the Broncos won that game but one part of the stat line can make or break a game for a team and that is the turnover category. The Broncos turned the ball over twice against the Raiders and failed to score a single touchdown with what some Denver fans may say was a revamped offense now that Osweiler is starting at QB. Like it was stated above, don’t be alarmed about this loss but don’t be surprised if the Broncos drop another game like this one.

Now, on to the main topic of this article, the studs and the duds. Just remember that sometimes a stud may be on a losing team and a dud may be on winning team, not likely, but it happens. These players either performed at an elite level or gave an embarrassing output this past week.

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Khalil Mack, Oakland Raiders: It is rare that you will find a defensive player in these types of articles so Khalil Mack would’ve had to have performed so great this week that he was the player everybody was talking about Monday. In fact, he did perform great this week, excellent perhaps. Mack recorded 7 total tackles against the Broncos on Sunday and 5 sacks. You read that right, 5 sacks. On one of his sacks, he forced QB Brock Osweiler to fumble the ball and force a safety on the play and bring the Raiders within 3 points of tying the game. They wouldn’t stay down for long, four minutes later, Derek Carr eased a pass to tight end Mychal Rivera for a touchdown to put Oakland up 15-12 and eventually win the game. The Raiders season is just about finished considering the playoff picture for the AFC, but this has been a successful season for the Raiders and it should be noted that this is a team to watch out for in 2016.

Doug Baldwin/ Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks: It’s not that I have ignored Baldwin these past couple of weeks, I’ve just been praising the way Russell Wilson has been producing on offense. Baldwin has 8  receiving touchdowns in the past three weeks, including Sunday. This is an insane amount of production that everyone figures won’t last that long but after Sunday I just had to pay tribute, not only to Baldwin, but to his fellow teammate Tyler Lockett. On Sunday, both receivers combined for 12 receptions and totaled 186 passing yards, which is 15.5 yards per reception. The duo also combined to score 5 touchdowns against the Ravens. This Seattle team is rolling through to the playoffs and if Wilson and his receivers can continue this streak, there’s no telling what might happen in the playoffs. Remember, sometimes it’s not the best teams who move on, it’s whoever is hottest.

Eli Manning, New York Giants: There was no quarterback better on Monday than Eli Manning. This is because there was only one another quarterback to compare to, but the argument can be made to say that he was a top 3 quarterback this week and the numbers he produced against the Dolphins is convincing. Manning was an outstanding 27/31 passing, which is an 87% completion rating. Those 27 completions ended up falling for 337 yards and 4 touchdowns. It should be noted that he also spread the ball out well, completing his passes to eight different players on Monday. His stats aren’t the only element of his game that landed him as a stud for the week, it is the way he is leading his team through the final part of the season. A lot of people, including me, didn’t believe the Giants could win any of their last four games but now they have one win with three to play including next week against the undefeated Panthers. Can Eli Manning play spoiler this season? It might be possible.

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Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys: What can be said about Dez Bryant this week? Not much, in fact, he was targeted only five times and recorded one reception for nine yards. This isn’t the only the game that Bryant has failed to meet expectations. In eight games this season, Bryant has been held under 65 yards receiving seven times and only has two touchdown receptions.One of those touchdowns was a desperation toss up type play that was bobbled around for a second and it fell into his hands. His season high in catches so far this season is a disappointing 5. Since the foot injury and Tony Romo’s two collarbone injuries, this whole season has been a dud for the all-pro wide receiver and will likely stay the same until next season.

Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos: Brock Osweiler completed 35 passes on Sunday for 308 yards. You’d expect hearing that stat line and believe that Sanders probably had some decent numbers on the day. That was definitely not the case this week. Sanders caught a total of 2 passes for just 17 yards. He was outperformed by 5 of his fellow teammates in the passing game including the backup running back Juwan Thompson who filled in for C.J. Anderson this week. That’s not all, he also muffed a punt that would lead to the Raiders scoring a game winning touchdown in the opening of the fourth quarter. Surely, Sanders can easily bounce back from this performance, but for now he’ll be a dud for the week.

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons: Well, it’s about time I got to Matt Ryan. The veteran quarterback has been struggling the past few weeks including his performance against the Panthers on Sunday. He completed 22 of his 34 passes for 224 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. It’s not just Ryan either that has been struggling. Remember that one guy who was the running back for the Falcons 5 weeks ago? His name is Devonta Freeman and he has been quiet since his week 10 BYE. Ryan can be to blame because without a consistent quarterback, it is very difficult to get the rest of the offense going. Matt Ryan is a true top 10 quarterback who’s veteran experience can help his team get better and with a better offensive line, the Falcons offense will prosper.

*Comment down below any opinions, suggestions or questions you have about the article. You can even put your studs and duds from this week as well! Share and stay tuned for next week!*

NFL Studs and Duds: Week 13

What have we learned in week 13? We learned that the NFC East continues to be up for grabs and terrible. The Giants and the Redskins losing and the Eagles and the Cowboys winning keeps the division race tight with a three way tie for first place at 5-7 and the Cowboys just a game out of first place. We learned that the New England Patriots are, in fact, vulnerable. Lastly, we all learned that Ben Roethlisberger is a monster when he’s healthy.

Before we get to the good and the bad among the players of the NFL, like last week, I will retort some of the teams who performed really well this week or, really bad this week. Reminder, these teams and players are listed on here because they either performed higher or lower than what was expected of them this week.

Philadelphia Eagle fans, rejoice! The week I write about the Philly defense as a dud, they go out the next week in Foxborough and absolutely shock the sports world by defeating the 10-2 Patriots, 35-28. The defense and special teams accounted for 3 total touchdowns, acquiring a blocked punt, an interception that was returned 99 yards, and a returned punt, all for touchdowns. The Philadelphia defense and special teams were in the spotlight but the offense made some key drives for 2 touchdowns including a drive that was kept alive towards the end of the game by a crucial 3rd down catch by Riley Cooper to keep the Patriots offense off the field and find their way to a victory. Over their past few games the Seahawks have absolutely dominated their opponent on the field. The past three games the Seahawks have outscored their opponents 106-50 and during that span, QB Russell Wilson has thrown for 879 yards and a touchdown to interception ratio of  11:0. The Seahawks are on fire and now they went from out of playoff contention early in the season to having a legitimate, but small, chance of winning the division.

I will address the Detroit Lions first because they played the Thursday game this week and it is truly  amazing how fast a game can change in the NFL. Once up by 20, the Lions quickly saw their playoffs hopes vanish as the Packers beat the Lions in Detroit, 27-23. What makes the Lions situation worse, is that they lost on a desperate and unlikely 61 yard hail mary touchdown from Aaron Rodgers to lose in dramatic fashion. The San Diego Chargers haven’t been much of a threat this year. They are 0-3 in their division and their three wins have come against three below average teams (Lions, Jaguars, and Browns). How can they be a disappointment this week if they played the 10-2 Broncos? Well, They’re continued poor play this season is something to write about. They are ranked in the bottom in almost every defensive category, they’re run game is non-existent, and they lost Pro-Bowl WR Keenan Allen. The only part of their game that has been somewhat good this season has been the passing game led by Phillip Rivers, but even Rivers has been inconsistent this season. On Sunday they had a chance to get that much needed win against a surging Broncos team in San Diego that can fuel their season and help them improve as a team, but they end up producing 272 total yards of offense that accounted for a lone field goal in a 17-3 loss against the Broncos.

Now, the part that we care about the most. Who played above their expectations and maybe even helped their team get a win? Who played below average and suffered as their team lost? Well, here we go. First here are the studs of Week 13.

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Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers: You’re probably asking yourself “Why is Newton in this article? He’s always supposed to play well”. You’re probably right as he is in line to win MVP this season but the way he’s been playing lately has been a sight to see. Newton pulled his team together to defeat the Saints in a high scoring affair, 41-38. His highlight of the night was a touchdown pass to Jerricho Cotchery with 1:05 left in the game to put them ahead and ultimately win the game. This week, he was 28/41 passing for 331 yards and 5 touchdowns with 1 interception, including, 10 rushes for 49 yards. This is Newtons second 5 touchdown game this season, in fact he did the same thing two weeks ago against the Redskins. If Newton continues this style of play he will definitely be the league MVP.

Javorius “Buck” Allen, Baltimore Ravens: Although the Ravens suffered a loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, “Buck” Allen had a career day in Miami. Allen rushed the ball 17 times, recorded 63 yards on the ground and averaged 3.7 yards per carry. It wasn’t what he did on the ground that was so impressive, it was his ability as a pass catcher that got the attention. Allen had 12 receptions that went for 107 yards and a touchdown. Allen has filled in quite nicely following the absence of Justin Forsett and his performance on Sunday proved that he can handle all starting running back abilities.

DeAngelo Williams, Pittsburgh Steelers: I’m sure the Steelers don’t mind that Williams has replaced the injured Bell for the rest of the season. Including his performance against the Colts this week, as a starter this season in six games, Williams has acquired 591 rush yards and 209 receiving yards and totaling 6 touchdowns. Against the Colts he had 26 carries for 134 yards, averaging an elite 5.2 yards per carry. He also tacked on 5 receptions for 31 yards. His continued run of dominance has landed him as a Week 13 stud.

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Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers: For the most part, Philip Rivers has had a good year but in two of his last three games he threw for 0 touchdowns, 1 interception and less than 205 passing yards. He did play a stellar Broncos defense this week but when you add in that he was playing a division game at home, 202 yards and throwing a pick-6 is embarrassing considering the potential that the offense has. Rivers was 18/35 passing this week and has labeled himself a dud for the week.

Todd Gurley, St. Louis Rams: In each of his first four games this season, Gurley rushed for over 125 yards and scored 3 touchdowns during that span. Since then, not so much. In his past  five games he hasn’t even eclipsed 90 rushing yards despite getting over 20 touches in two of those games. This week against the Arizona Cardinals he only managed 9 carries for 41 yards and did not record a catch. His output hasn’t been terrible lately but his performance this week at home was something that he, as well as all of us, would like to forget about. Until he can prove himself against Detroit next week, he will be a dud for Week 13.

Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings: Bridgewater was supposed to have a breakout season this year and thus far has only recorded a few solid outings. Over his past two games, Bridgewater has thrown for a mere 292 yards, 0 touchdowns and 2 interceptions during that span. You can almost guess how he did against Seattle, completing 17 of his 28 pass attempts for 118 yards and 1 interception. If you add in that the Minnesota failed to score any points on Sunday, it is fair to say why Teddy has found himself as a dud this week.

**Comment any opinions, questions or suggestions down below and be sure to check in next week for a new NFL Studs and Duds for Week 14**

NFL Studs and Duds: Week 12

Week 12 of the NFL brought us a lot disappointing and satisfactory performances that we won’t forget this season. It seemed like a stab in the heart to be a fan rooting for the Cleveland Browns because when you root for the Browns you expect nothing more than a couple wins a season and a search for a franchise quarterback, actually, all of us are waiting to see that. But the loss suffered Monday night in Cleveland was something no one thought could’ve happened but if any team could find a way, it’s the Browns. Any NFC East fans out there? There should never be a response when this question is asked and in week 12 there should be no argument. Although the Redskins beat the Giants 20-14, the Cowboys and Eagles lost to the Panthers and Lions by a combined score of 78-28. Don’t let the 28 points fool you, half of those points were scored in garbage time as both teams’ fates were sealed fairly early in each game. And with Romo out for the season, the Cowboys playoff hopes are slowly dwindling.

On a positive note, the Denver Broncos exceeded expectations of resorting to a backup quarterback and beat the Patriots 30-24 on a walk-off run by C.J. Anderson in Denver. Hats off to the Houston Texans winning their 4th consecutive game with a 24-6 win over the Saints, and creating a two way tie for first in the AFC South with the Colts. The Minnesota Vikings are leading the NFC North by a game over the Packers, in week 12. Their consistent play has driven them atop the division with the Packers dropping 4 of their last 5, two of them at Lambeau Field. It was quite a scare that the 49ers put on the Arizona Cardinals but it was the Cards who came out with the 19-13 win in San Francisco. The Cardinals were highly favored to win but the 49ers defense stepped up, containing Arizona’s passing to 267 yards and rushing to 70 yards. Despite squeaking out the win, the Cardinals remain one of the hottest teams in the NFL riding a nice 5 game win streak and hope to keep it going in St. Louis against the Rams.

Now, on to the players who rose to the occasion. These players were powerhouses for their team. Win or lose they went out on the field and performed like Pro-Bowlers.

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C.J. Anderson, Denver Broncos: This season hasn’t been in Anderson’s favor but that all changed Sunday night in Denver. Anderson rushed the ball 15 times for a season high 133 yards and two touchdowns, one of which sealed the game and secured Denver a win, is my first stud of the week. Averaging 7.5 yards per carry Sunday, Anderson seemed to resemble his 2014 Pro Bowl self with a handful of breakaways including a 48 yard run and complete dominance on the ground. Will he keep this hot streak going or will he return to his average self like he has so far this year.

Jarvis Landry, Miami Dolphins: Although the struggling Dolphins suffered a loss Sunday afternoon, Landry had a day to hang his hat on. Landry had season highs in receptions (13) and receiving yards (165) including a touchdown against the Jets. Landry was all over the highlight reel which consisted of a 40 yard reception where he burned the Jets corners. On the same drive, Landry topped it off with a 5 yard touchdown reception. Landry has been fairly consistent this year and is never a bad option in the passing game but what he showed Sunday was outstanding.

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks: In an offensive shootout in Seattle, Russell Wilson tore up the Pittsburgh defense through the air. Wilson boasted 5 touchdown passes for 345 yards which are both season highs. He also completed 21 total passes on 30 attempts for  a 70% completion rating. Wilson has had a down year, respectively, averaging 1.3 passing touchdowns per game before Sundays victory over the Steelers. He showed signs of improvement against the 49ers the week before but really showed his true colors this week winning 39-30.

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Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos: Sealing the victory against the Patriots was enough to make Thomas’ night but his stat line was another story. Thomas was targeted 13 times Sunday night and only managed to bring in 1 reception for 36 yards both season lows. Granted, the weather conditions were not ideal but that didn’t stop fellow teammate Emmanuel Sanders to shine and reel in 6 catches for 113 yards. A night of miscues and dropped passes was the story for Demaryius and is what landed him as one of the duds of the week.

Philadelphia Eagles’ Defense: What can be said about the Eagles defense? Their past two games they surrendered 90 points combined to two below average offenses (Buccaneers, Lions). The Lions have been streaking lately but this was an unexpected output on offense. The Eagles surrendered 951 yards in both games combined and only producing one turnover in the mix. To make matters worse was that Calvin Johnson completely tore apart their secondary with 93 yards and 3 scores and the week before, Doug Martin rushed for 235 yards and made a total mockery of Philadelphia’s defensive line. They could probably be considered worse than a dud but they will sit here for now.

Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints: Future Hall of Famer Drew Brees did not perform how a future resident in Canton should. The veteran would throw for 228 yards on 44 pass attempts, completing 25. He would record 0 touchdowns and throw a lone interception against the fairly vulnerable Texans secondary. Brees and the Saints could not get anything going on offense and the entire team has continued to struggle on both sides of the ball. Although the Saints offense has had its moments this season, this is a  very inconsistent Drew Brees that we are not used to seeing. Brees is more than capable of a bounce back  but for now he is a dud for the week.

 

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