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NFL Week 7 Recap (Part 2)

Aaron Ranson


Nov 2, 2022


Sunday 4 O’clock Games


 


Houston Texans @ Las Vegas Raiders


The Houston Texans have their eyes on the draft. After a 1-3-1 start to the season, the Texans and their new general manager, Nick Caserio, seem to be all in on tanking, with hopes of landing a high draft pick. The 2023 draft includes many prized quarterback prospects and although Davis Mills has been a pleasant surprise the last two years, upgrading at the most important position in sports has to be a priority. Even still, it is not in the DNA of professional athletes to lose on purpose, no matter how much management might want them to, and the Texans have been competitive in most of their games this season. The Raiders on the other hand, are in the midst of a seemingly inadvertent tank. They made big offseason moves and traded away high valued draft picks in the offseason, but are still just 1-4 through five games. The teams seemed to know their roles in this one, as Las Vegas was definitely playing to win.


 


The Raiders started off the game with a 50-yard field goal from Daniel Carlson, which represented the only offence of the first quarter. The aforementioned Davis Mills would strike next, at the 11-minute mark of the second quarter, finding Chris Moore for a 13-yard touchdown, and giving his team a 7-3 lead. After a turnover on downs for the Raiders, the Texans extended their lead to 10-3 courtesy of a 55-yard boot by Kaimi Fairbairn. The final drive of the half was capped off by a 26-yard strike from Derek Carr to Mac Hollins, tying the game at 10 going into the break. Josh Jacobs would highlight the third quarter with his first of three touchdowns on the game, he also added 143-yards on the ground throughout, continuing his superb season. Mills would score his final points of the game on a 25-yard third down pass to Phillip Dorsett, giving the Texans a 20-17 lead. Jacobs would then score consecutive rushing touchdowns on Vegas’ next two drives, and with the score 31-20, Davis Mills would throw all hopes of a comeback away, with a pick six to Raiders safety Duron Harmon. Las Vegas is now 2-4 on the season and will need to stack together some wins if they have any hope of making the playoffs this year. The New Orleans Saints will be their next test. Houston will go back home for a week eight division game against the Tennessee Titans.


 


Final Score:    (2-4) Las Vegas Raiders 38


                        (1-4-1) Houston Texans 20


 


New York Jets @ Denver Broncos


If the NFL was predetermined before the season started, an outside observer might think these two teams grabbed each other’s scripts. The Broncos were supposed to be the team to finally challenge the Chiefs in the AFC West, while the Jets were expected to retain their position as the basement dwellers of the AFC East. Instead, New York looks like one of the most exciting young teams in football, and the only team Denver seems to want to beat is themselves.


 


You can’t mention the Jets exciting young core without talking about Breece Hall. The top running back taken in the 2022 NFL draft is having a phenomenal start to his season, proving why his stock was so high. It didn’t take long for Hall to make his mark on this game, he took a 62-yard run to the house on just the second drive of the first quarter. Unfortunately, he went down with a season ending ACL injury shortly after, a devastating blow to an otherwise positive outing for the Jets. The Bronco’s would add a rushing touchdown of their own to close out the first quarter, a two-yard rush by newly acquired back Latavius Murray. However, Brandon McManus’ missed extra point attempt kept the lead with the Jets, 7-6. However, McManus would redeem himself at the end of the second quarter, this time splitting the uprights on a 44-yard boot that put the Broncos up 9-7. Just before the half was over, New York would get themselves into field goal position, and convert, for the third lead change of the game. The final two quarters would see Denver held off the scoreboard, the Jets coach Robert Saleh showing why he is regarded as one of the best defensive minds in football. Greg Zuerlein would tack on two more kicks, and the Jets move to 5-2 after a rather uneventful victory.


 


Final Score:    (5-2) New York Jets 16


                        (2-5) Denver Broncos 9


 


Kansas City Chiefs @ San Francisco 49ers


Patrick Mahomes had something to prove after that home loss to Buffalo. It was unfortunate for Niners fans that their team had to be next on the schedule, because I don’t think any team could’ve contained the superstar quarterback in this one. He threw for 423 yards and three touchdowns, and the Chiefs found paydirt six times throughout the 60 minutes. MeCole Hardman accounted for three of those touchdowns, catching one and running in two more. It also seems that Juju Smith-Schuster has found his rhythm in the offence, having another stellar performance to follow up his breakout game against the Bills. Juju put up a game high 124 receiving yards along with a fourth quarter touchdown.


 


The whomping may leave a bad taste in Niner’s fans mouths, but the addition of Christian McCaffery just three days before this game gives them something to look forward to. Arguably the best dual threat back in the NFL, his dynamic playmaking ability mixed with Kyle Shanahan’s creative offensive schemes could prove lethal once McCaffery has time to settle into his new situation. We’ll see if over the next week he can learn the playbook and pay dividends in their next matchup against the Los Angeles Rams. The Chiefs take this dominant performance into their bye week and we’ll see them play next in week nine against the Titans.


 


Final Score:    (5-2) Kansas City Chiefs 44


                        (3-4) San Francisco 49ers 23


 


Seattle Seahawks @ Los Angeles Chargers


They just keep doing it. People keep writing off Geno Smith and the Seattle Seahawks. How many times can they beat the oddsmakers in Vegas before everyone realizes that they might just be a good team? Geno Smith continues his 10th year breakout season, and rookie Kenneth Walker is well on his way to Offensive Rookie of the Year honours, slashing the Chargers defence for 163-yards and two touchdowns on the ground. Marquise Goodwin also added two scores through the air.as the Seahawks cruised to an easy victory. The talented Chargers defence looked lost throughout the game, unable to keep pace with the high tempo offence of Seattle. To add insult with injury, JC Jackson went down with a potentially season ending knee injury, and Mike Williams suffered a high-ankle sprain that is predicted to keep him sidelined for a minimum of four weeks, creating two giant voids in their secondary and receiver rooms. The lone bright spot for Los Angeles is the electric play of Austin Ekeler, who will undoubtedly pick up extra reps on passing downs now that Williams is out. Ekeler had 127-yards and two touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough to challenge the Seattle lead, that was never really in danger throughout the game. Both teams are now at 4-3 on the season, but despite identical records, the narratives going into week eight are vastly different. The Chargers have a bye week that will allow them to reassess what they may need to do at the November 1st NFL trade deadline to address the mounting number of injuries. The Seahawks look to continue their Cinderella season at home against the scorching hot 6-1 New York Giants.


 


Final Score:    (4-3) Seattle Seahawks 37


                        (4-3) Las Angeles Chargers 23


 


Sunday Night Football


 


Pittsburgh Steelers @ Miami Dolphins


The Miami Dolphins have yet to lose a game with Tua Tagavailoa as their starting quarterback. This is a welcomed stat for Dolphins fans because after missing three games with a concussion, Tua was back behind center for their Sunday Night matchup against the Steelers. The Dolphins signal caller picked up right where he left off before his injury, marching the Phins down the field and finding Raheem Moster on a screen pass for a nine-yard touchdown. Jason Sanders would tack on another six points for Miami with two field goals before the end of the first quarter, opening up a 13-point lead.  Second quarter belonged to the Steelers as they clawed their way back to make it a three-point game on the backs of a Chris Boswell 45-yard kick and a beautiful toe tap touchdown in the corner of the end zone by George Pickens. The Final points of the game came as time expired in the first half when Jason Sanders sent another kick through the uprights, this time from 47- yards out.


 


The last two quarters of the game were marked by defensive brilliance and offensive blunders, by both sides. Javon Holland sealed the win for Miami late in the fourth, when he picked off the Kenny Pickett in the redzone, his third interception of the game. Miami remains undefeated with Tua as the starter, and will look to continue that streak in week eight in Detroit. The Steelers will take the short drive down the Lincoln Highway to take on the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles.


 


Final Score:    (4-3) Miami Dolphins 16


                        (2-5) Pittsburgh Steelers 10


 


Monday Night Football


 


Chicago Bears @ New England Patriots


I just can’t figure out the New England Patriots. One week they look like peak dynasty Patriots and the next week they look like, well, the Chicago Bears. The Bears do actually seem to be on the rise however, as they try to determine if 2021 11th overall draft pick Justin Fields is their answer at quarterback. Chicago sports one of the league’s top rushing offences, with the three-headed monster of David Montgomery, Khalil Herbert and Justin Fields giving opposing defensive lines fits all year. Monday saw that rush attack amass 243-yards against a top-rated New England defence, munching up the clock and making it very difficult for the Patriots offence to get into a rhythm.


 


The Bears jumped out to a 10-0 lead before the Pats knew what hit them. Mac Jones made returned from an ankle injury and the slow start to this game only intensified the pressure on Bill Belichick to give rookie backup quarterback Bailey Zappe control of the offence. After going 3/6 passing and delivering a brutal interception that led to a Bears score, Belichick made the move. Zappe honoured his coaches trust in him with a 30-yard touchdown to Jakobi Meyers on his first drive. On the subsequence series, Justin Fields was picked off by the Patriots, handing the ball right back to Zappe with prime field position. This time it was Rhamondre Stevenson who found paydirt, vaulting New England into the lead for the first time in the game. The Bears didn’t go away quietly though and scored 23 unanswered points to close out the victory. The two-drive push by Zappe would prove to be the only gas New England’s attack had in the tank, as the Bears trounced the Pats and further complicated the rarity that is a QB controversy in Foxboro. Justin Fields is finally showing signs of being the guy, and will try to carry this signature win into a week eight matchup with the Dallas Cowboys. The Patriots will head to Metlife stadium for a division game against the New York Jets.


 


Final Score:    (3-4) Chicago Bears 33


                        (3-4) New England Patriots 14


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