In Week 8 of the NFL, we got some real tricks and some real treats.
The tricks? The Baltimore Ravens fooling us into thinking they’re a contender right now. The Giants, 49ers, and Bills. Hue Jackson and Todd Haley getting the boot. Well, maybe that’s a treat.
The treats? The Texans jumping into the AFC South lead, James Conner prompting “Le’veon who?” calls, and Mitch Trubisky dressing up as Mike Ditka.
Let’s take a look at the Winners and Losers from Week 8 of the 2018 NFL season:
Cleveland Browns fans – Better late than never, right? Browns fans rejoice! You have been freed of Hue Jackson, who in his two plus seasons in Cleveland brought you 3 wins and 36 losses, which is the worst record for a head coach with any one team in NFL history. Oh, and you’re also free of Todd Haley, so let’s get someone in there that can help groom Baker Mayfield.
Houston Texans – Don’t look now, but the Houston Texans are here to stay. After losing their first three games, the Texans are now atop the AFC South after rolling off victories in each of their past five games.
Kansas City Chiefs – The Broncos have certainly given Pat Mahomes and the Chiefs a challenge in both games, but Kansas City handled business with ease. They remain atop the AFC and in firm control of their playoff destiny in the AFC West.
James Conner – Le’Veon who? James Conner has certainly made the most of his opportunity in replacing Le’Veon Bell as he’s scored nine total touchdowns, including becoming the first Steelers player with three consecutive games scoring at least two touchdowns.
Seattle Seahawks – This is why you don’t win or lose the Super Bowl in the first month of the season. After a rough 0-2 start, the Seattle Seahawks have jumped out to 4-3 record and look like legitimate playoff contenders.
Carolina Panthers – Norv Turner might be the best thing to happen to Cam Newton. And the Panthers are one of the dark horses in the NFC right now quietly doing their job, which finds them sitting pretty at 5-2 (second in the NFC South) and in prime playoff position.
Ryan Fitzpatrick – Fitzmagic has returned! And that’s all thanks to Jameis Winston and his incredibly honest play — where he had another multi-turnover game. Fitzpatrick relieved Winston in the third quarter where he completed 11 of 15 passes for 194 yards and two touchdowns. And Fitzmagic gets the start this week! Heeeeeee’s back!
Indianapolis Colts – The Colts might be sitting at 3-5, but there are good things happening in Indianapolis. The Colts’ offense has scored 30 plus points in three straight games and seems to be close to putting all the pieces together as a team.
Adam Vinatieri – Who says kickers don’t get love, too? Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri overtook Morten Andersen as the NFL’s all-time leading scorer after Sunday’s game. Vinatieri has scored 2,550 points in his career, and he will no doubt become the third kicker inducted into the Hall of Fame.
New Orleans Saints – The Saints are a legitimate Super Bowl contender and one of if not the best team in the NFC. But who’s surprised when Drew Brees is playing lights out and your offense is firing on all cylinders? The Saints sit at 6-1 with a game against the undefeated Rams coming up this weekend.
Adam Thielen – Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but Adam Thielen had another 100-yard receiving game in a losing effort against the Saints. Thielen tied Calvin Johnson’s record by eclipsing 100 receiving yards for the eighth consecutive game. Oh, and he set the record for most 100-plus-yard games to start a season. Keep doing you, Adam.
Mitch Trubisky – Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky had a little early Halloween fun when he arrived to Soldier Field on Sunday dressed as Bears legend Mike Ditka — sweater, shades, and all. Oh, and he also turned up to his postgame press conference “dressed as a legend.” All I’ve got to say is, That’s my quarterback.
Hue Jackson & Todd Haley – While the Browns certainly are winners in this case, Hue Jackson and Todd Haley are out of a job following a rough start to the 2018 campaign. Even their Hard Knocks performances couldn’t save them. Expectations are greater for the Browns than they’ve been in awhile. So 2 wins isn’t gonna cut it.
Jameis Winston – Can we all agree now that Jameis Winston is not the future in Tampa? While he’s made some special plays as a Buc, he’s had more bad than good and cost his team more games than he’s won them. In four games this season, Winston has tossed 10 interceptions. And Sunday was enough. He was benched for Ryan Fitzpatrick, who lit it up in relief. Not to mention Fitzpatrick gets the start this week.
Ty Montgomery – Any chance you have to give Aaron Rodgers the ball with 2 minutes to score, you give it to him. Unless you’re Ty Montgomery, who instead of taking a knee (as told) decided to run the ball out and fumbled, giving the ball back to the Rams. Now, I don’t see anything wrong with what Montgomery did. But then again, I’m a Bears fan and this benefited me greatly.
Jacksonville Jaguars – The Jaguars were losers before they lost to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. When it London…get drunk and try to get out of a $50,000 bar tab? Several Jags players were out clubbing at 4am on Saturday and got into a brawl over not paying for their tab. Millionaires. Couldn’t pay their bar tab. Huh.
New York Giants – This isn’t the start the Giants envisioned. Or the play. New York sits at 1-7 after another loss that makes you wonder if Eli Manning will survive the season. Well, the good news is you currently hold the first pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.
Coliseum Grounds Crew – I know it was a busy weekend for Los Angeles sports, but who thought it was a good idea to simply paint the Rams logo over the USC logo from the previous night? Bad call, grounds crew. Bad call.
Baltimore Ravens – This is why I’m not entirely convinced of the Ravens as a contender right now. They jumped out to a hot streak but how dropped three of their last four games. Oh, and they’re currently outside the AFC playoff race.
San Francisco 49ers – Things continue to get even worse for the hapless 49ers. But I mean, maybe you’re a winner because, as of now, you hold the second overall draft pick in the 2019 draft.
Buffalo Bills – Oh, the Bills. How bad can it get from here? Well, now Derek Anderson is hurt. Get ready for Nathan Peterman against the Bears on Sunday.