Many teams dynamics shifted after football ended on Sunday night and we still have a game left to play (albeit one between the Titans and Colts). We will certainly be touching on these in the podcast but here are some things that really stood out to me.
Aaron Rodgers getting hurt removes the Packers from the Super Bowl conversation in my opinion. No disrespect to Brett Hundley but the 3rd year QB isn’t prepared to take a team with a hurt oline (both tackles), banged up running back group (between Montgomery and Williams) and an average defense to the playoffs. Rodgers was able to because he’s one of the best quarterbacks of all time as far as skill goes and the team is built around him making his superhuman plays on a weekly basis. Without him it evens out the NFC North and we could see a team like the Vikings or Lions in the playoffs, not to mention it will have benefits for wildcard teams as well.
Deshaun Watson is leading the NFL in touchdown passes, which is insane because he is a rookie and ALSO wasn’t even the starting quarterback in week 1. However Watson quickly passed by Tom Savage and is now making all 11 teams who drafted before the Texans look silly. The Browns, 49ers, Jets and Jaguars would all be in much better places if they took a flier on the Clemson QB. Maybe Dabo Swinney was on to something when he said “if you’re passing on Deshaun Watson you’re basically passing on Michael Jordan”.
Are the Giants better without Ben McAdoo calling plays or were the Broncos just overmatched on offense? McAdoo relieved himself of play calling duties after the Giants fell to 0-5. He was never able to get Brandon Marshall involved and the offensive line has been a mess all season. With their offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan at the reigns the Giants were able to upset the Broncos (and thousands of people who had picked them in their survivor league) as they proved that they weren’t going to lose every game this season. They actually got a boost from Evan Engram and their defense finally showed that it belonged in the conversation with the other greats in the league. Janoris Jenkins has been a ballhawk all season and if the Giants want to continue to win without Odell, Marshall and Sterling Sheppard they will need more games like this from their defense.