Welcome to another instalment of my weekly NFL Column. My goal is to watch everything so that you don’t have to. I will present to you the best games to watch back; the craziest moments; the best individual performances and the season-long stat leaders and records. I will also be previewing the upcoming gameweek, too.
If that sounds like something you’re interested in, check in each week.
Not everybody in the UK has the ability to watch almost 20 hours of live NFL every week, but I’ll make sure you don’t miss anything you’d wish you didn’t. Without further delay…
This is what happened This Week in the NFL.
Game of the Week
If you can only watch one full game in its entirety, watch this one:
Seattle Seahawks @ Detroit Lions
No, I wasn’t expecting this either. But if a game is epic, we recommend it!
If you’re only going to watch one game, this is surely it.
No spoilers, just yet…
Alright, now that you’ve watched the highlights (which probably took a while), let’s talk about this chaos.
There were 20 total drives in this game of football. Five of those drives did not result in points being scored – and one of those was the game being iced, as the clock ran down. There were 12 touchdowns and 3 field goals.
Seahawks 48 – 45 Lions (Scorigami!!! – if you don’t know what that is, Google it. You’re welcome.)
What a game. The Seahawks offense managed to tick along very consistently throughout the game, with double-digits in every quarter. The Lions weren’t clicking as much for the first three quarters, but they were within striking distance, entering Q4 down 38-23. They scored 22 points in a respectable effort, but couldn’t quite make it happen.
Both Geno Smith and Rashaad Penny absolutely balled out in this one, and DK Metcalf returned to the form we expect from him. The Seahawks passed for 320 yards, scoring twice through the air, and rushed for 235 yards and scored 3 there.
A shoutout is deserved – and you’ll definitely be seeing more in the Individual Performers section later – for T.J Hockenson and Jamaal Williams, who both went absolutely nuts, despite the loss. You have to feel for that Detroit offense right now, they’ve scored more points than any other team in the league and they’re 1-3 with a -1 point difference.
Other games to watch back
Buffalo Bills @ Baltimore Ravens
Kansas City Chiefs @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Minnesota Vikings @ New Orleans Saints
Upset of the Week
I’ll be honest. This was a damn good week to be betting on the NFL results. I would say the only big surprise on paper came in the Monday Night Football game.
Los Angeles Rams 9 – 24 San Francisco 49ers
The one thing I will say, is that Kyle Shanahan does seem to have Sean McVay’s number, in the regular season at the very least. So, it wasn’t a huge upset, but definitely a convincing performance from a team who lost their starting QB. Deebo Samuel continued to do Deebo Samuel things, and Jimmy Garoppolo managed the game effectively in a low-scoring win.
Winners and Losers
Cincinnati Bengals (2-2)
Las Vegas Raiders (1-3)
Minnesota Vikings (3-1)
Atlanta Falcons (2-2)
Dallas Cowboys (3-1)
Seattle Seahawks (2-2)
Tennessee Titans (2-2)
New York Giants (3-1)
Philadelphia Eagles (4-0)
New York Jets (2-2)
Buffalo Bills (3-1)
Los Angeles Chargers (2-2)
Arizona Cardinals (2-2)
Green Bay Packers (3-1)
Kansas City Chiefs (3-1)
San Francisco 49ers (2-2)
Miami Dolphins (3-1)
Denver Broncos (2-2)
New Orleans Saints (1-3)
Cleveland Browns (2-2)
Washington Commanders (1-3)
Detroit Lions (1-3)
Indianapolis Colts (1-2-1)
Chicago Bears (2-2)
Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2)
Pittsburgh Steelers (1-3)
Baltimore Ravens (2-2)
Houston Texans (0-3-1)
Carolina Panthers (1-3)
New England Patriots (1-3)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-2)
Los Angeles Rams (2-2)
And then there was one. The final undefeated team is the Philadelphia Eagles. They start their campaign 4-0, after defeating the Lions, Vikings, Commanders and Jaguars respectively. Their opponents have a combined record of 7-9, but they have been consistent in each effort. Their closest call came in Week 1 against a Lions team who have been solid on offense but can’t keep their opponents quiet, where they won 38-35.
The Eagles are averaging 28.75 points per game for and 17.75 against, so it’s safe to say they’ve been comfortable in all but that Week 1 win. Philadelphia’s offense has amassed over 400 total yards in every single game this year, so far, which is incredibly impressive.
Week 5 will be their biggest test in the first half of the season, as they head to Arizona to face the 2-2 Cardinals, who have only taken losses to the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Rams. Kyler Murray is a dangerous playmaker and that team will be looking to get some momentum as their fixtures start to lighten up, so that game could be a fun watch.
Houston Texans (0-3-1)
I’m sorry Texans fans, but for what it’s worth, there’s a positive spin if you want it. They may be the final winless team, but they’re a team whose aspirations don’t begin this season, so that shouldn’t be too disturbing. If they can get the first pick in the draft, that’s a good thing, so that’s the first silver lining.
The other silver lining is Dameon Pierce. We will speak more about him very shortly, but let’s put it this way, the more young promising players you have on your team showing flashes mid-rebuild, the better. If you suck and lose all your games you get the best draft pick. But, getting the best pick while seeing good things from some of your young players is the best case scenario for a rebuilding team.
Their next three weeks are against the Jaguars (2-2), the Raiders (1-3) and the Titans (2-2), so we’ll have to see how long this winless streak continues.
Standout Individual Performers
Geno Smith, Seattle Seahawks
77% completion rate, 320 passing yards and 2 TD’s, plus 49 rushing yards and a TD.
I can’t possibly talk start this up any other way than talking about the Seattle Seahawks QB. Geno Smith has stepped up into this role, filling the void left behind by a hall of famer. He has not only done an admirable job, he’s actually outperformed Russell Wilson so far this season. This week, Smith had an incredibly professional and impactful performance, in the epic 48-45 win. He completed 23 of 30 pass attempts (77%) for 320 passing yards, finding the endzone twice. He also had a sneakily effective rushing game, going 7 for 49 and scoring on a nice scramble. The Seahawks might not exactly be contenders, but Geno Smith isn’t going down without a fight.
Rashaad Penny, Seattle Seahawks
17 carries for 151 rushing yards and 2 TD’s.
Efficiency, efficiency, efficiency. Rashaad Penny has never exactly had a workhorse volume. For context, this week’s 17 carries tied his third-most rushing attempts in a game, through 41 NFL appearances. However, while he isn’t afforded too many opportunities, he makes the most of them. In a narrow win, he put up 151 rushing yards (8.9 per carry) and scored twice. He also iced the game on the final drive. Penny is doing everything it takes to prove that he deserves more work, with no true RB1 in that locker room. This week was a good start to that process.
D.K Metcalf, Seattle Seahawks
7 receptions on 10 targets for 149 receiving yards
One last Seattle Seahawk to round it out, while we’re speaking on the subject. D.K Metcalf had himself a day, bouncing back to the version of him we know and love. Previously managing no more than 64, in Week 4 he turned 7 catches into 149 yards. He also took an iconic trip on the medical cart, because he needed to use the bathroom. What a day for D.K.
Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders
28 carries for 144 rushing yards and 2 TD’s, plus 5 receptions for 31 receiving yards.
The Las Vegas Raiders really needed a win this week. In their effort to get out from under the increasingly heavy weight of a 0 in the win column, they leant on their run game more than they had in previous weeks. In weeks 1 through 3, Josh Jacobs had 42 total rush attempts and racked up just 192 rushing yards. In Week 4, the Alabama product was handed the ball 28 times and turned those carries into 144 yards, scoring twice in the 32-23 victory over Denver. Jacobs’ fifth-year option didn’t get picked up, so he’s trying to prove himself. This week he had a career day, putting his best foot forward for a second contract.
Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
75% completion rate, 385 passing yards and 3 TD’s.
It’s always painful to have an amazing game and still lose, but Tom Brady did exactly that this week. The Chiefs offense was so ridiculously consistent, scoring 5 TD’s and 2 FG’s on 11 drives – including a one play drive to end the first half. 41 points on 10 real drives. The GOAT is great, still, but it’s tough to top that. He completed 39 of his 52 pass attempts for 385 passing yards and 3 TD’s. They put up 31 points, but it just wasn’t enough. Nevertheless it was a very strong performance.
Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
8 receptions on 10 targets for 103 receiving yards and 2 TD’s.
As part of Brady’s huge day, his number one receiver had a pretty damn good one too. He was targeted 10 times, hauling in 8 of them for 103 receiving yards. He also scored twice,
T.J Hockenson, Detroit Lions
8 receptions on 12 targets for 179 receiving yards and 2 TD’s.
What a performance. Yes, the Lions lost, but man. T.J Hockenson went ballistic this week. Through three weeks, he had caught 10 receptions for 82 yards, total. This week alone, he caught 8 more on 12 targets, producing 179 yards and scoring twice. Hockenson may not be the only receiving option in Detroit as he was two years ago, but he proved this week that he’s an incredibly reliable target. As I mentioned before, the Lions offense is legitimately playing well, their defense just hasn’t done enough.
Jared Goff, Detroit Lions
67% completion rate, 378 passing yards and 4 TD’s with 1 INT.
Tom Brady wasn’t the only QB who had a great individual game while losing, and T.J Hockenson wasn’t the only Lion who had a big day on Sunday. Jared Goff had his best game since joining Detroit, without a doubt. Outside of his pick-six to start the second half, Goff had a really good game. He completed 26 of his other 38 attempts for 378 passing yards and 4 touchdowns. In an alternative universe where the Lions defense is 20% better, this team is 4-0 right now.
Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles
27 carries for 134 rushing yards and 2 TD’s.
Speaking of 4-0, how ’bout those Eagles? Their fourth straight win came largely on the back of a big day from half back Miles Sanders. He, similarly to Josh Jacobs, hadn’t been given the ball that much, averaging just 15 carries per game. In Week 4, he rushed 27 times, resulting in a brilliant performance, with 134 yards and 2 TD’s. Philadelphia now find themselves the final undefeated team in the NFL, 4-0 and poised for an exciting matchup with the Cardinals.
Dameon Pierce, Houston Texans
14 carries for 131 rushing yards and a TD.
There’s two layers to this. There’s playing well in a loss, and there’s playing well on a bad team in their losses. Dameon Pierce has become a really nice pickup for the Texans. They drafted him in the fourth round, and he earned himself a major role by putting in work in the preseason. Even though Houston has struggled their way to an 0-3-1 start, they lost two of their games by just one score.
Vonn Bell, Cincinnati Bengals
4 solo tackles, 2 interceptions for 46 return yards.
The Cincinnati Bengals won on Thursday Night Football in a bittersweet victory against the Dolphins. Tua Tagovailoa’s scary injury stole the headlines, and it’s hard to look back at anything else from the game, but Vonn Bell deserves credit for his big game. He made four tackles, as well as getting a pair of interceptions on the night, his first two of the year. He also managed to accrue 46 return yards on his two picks.
Denico Autry, Tennessee Titans
2 solo tackles for 2.0 sacks and a forced fumble.
The Tennessee Titans had a tough start to the year, but thanks to their defensive tackle Denico Autry, they had a really good start to their Week 4 matchup in Indianapolis. He only made two tackles this week, but they were both for sacks, including a strip sack on Matt Ryan on the very first drive of the game. This killed any chance for early momentum for Indy and lead directly to the Titans first TD drive.
Stat Leaders Through Week 4
Passing Yards – Justin Herbert LAC, 1250
Passing TD’s – Patrick Mahomes KC, Lamar Jackson BAL and Jared Goff DET, 11
Rushing Yards – Saquon Barkley NYG, 463
Rushing TD’s – Jamaal Williams DET, 6
Receiving Yards – Tyreek Hill MIA, 477
Receiving TD’s – Stefon Diggs BUF and Jahan Dotson WAS, 4
Total TD’s – Jamaal Williams DET, 6
Tackles (combined) – Roquan Smith CHI, 46
Sacks – Nick Bosa SF, 6.0
Interceptions – Jordan Poyer BUF, 4
Week 5 Preview – What to watch
Week 5 Best Games
Philadelphia Eagles @ Arizona Cardinals, 9:25pm
Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens, SNF
Las Vegas Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs, MNF
Tyler’s Bold Week 5 Prediction
Let’s have some fun. Saquon Barkley will throw a passing Touchdown in London.
Week 5 Storylines
Which horses will come out on top on Thursday Night? Colts @ Broncos, TNF
Two 3-1 teams meet at the Tottenham stadium for Green Bay’s first ever London game, Giants @ Packers, 2:30pm
How will the newly promoted rookie, Kenny Pickett, do against one of the best defenses in the league? Steelers @ Bills, 6pm
Can the Detroit defense do their O a solid and keep New England to below 30? Lions @ Patriots, 6pm
Will Geno Smith continue to outperform expectations? Seahawks @ Saints, 6pm
Dak Prescott is eyeing a Week 5 return, will he be ready in time to take on LA? Cowboys @ Rams, 9:25pm
Will Philadelphia extend their undefeated streak against the team who were the last ones standing in 2021? Eagles @ Cardinals, 9:25pm
An epic Sunday Night Football matchup in the AFC North. Bengals @ Ravens, SNF
Surely a one-win Vegas can’t do it on the road at Arrowhead, right? Raiders @ Chiefs, MNF