Welcome to another installment 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:
New York Jets @ Denver Broncos
I always look for games to recommend in this segment where you’ll be locked in from the first snap to the last. This week the battle between the Jets and the Broncos fit that bill. It wasn’t the prettiest game but it was fun! So, go watch it!!
Other games to watch back
Philadelphia Eagles @ Los Angeles Rams
Kansas City Chiefs @ Minnesota Vikings
Upset of the Week
Jacksonville Jaguars 25 – 20 Buffalo Bills
This weekend’s London game was a hard-fought battle between probably the best pair of teams that we’ve ever seen face off on British soil. Both teams have legitimate postseason hopes battling it out at the Spurs stadium. I was lucky enough to be there and it was an impressive performance from Jacksonville.
The Buffalo fans travelled, doing their best to make it a road atmosphere for London’s favourite team. But, that wasn’t enough of an advantage to outweigh the Jags’ extra week staying here.
Trevor Lawrence and Calvin Ridley’s connection was absolutely popping off, especially on key third downs. Travis Etienne was the star of the show, though. His balance and ability to break through arm tackles and bodies was unreal.
Etienne carried the ball 26 times for 136 rushing yards and 2 TD’s – which he wasn’t happy about, as he’s facing himself in fantasy this week! – and an additional 48 yards through the air.
Josh Allen and the Bills offense didn’t wake up in the first half, and by the time they were acclimated and comfortable, it was too late. Allen underthrew Stefon Diggs twice, on one he was able to catch it but he had to stop so he couldn’t get the score, and on the other it was intercepted.
A.J. Epenesa balled out but it wasn’t enough to stop Jacksonville from staying in front. To add insult to injury, star linebacker Matt Milano broke his leg in the first half.
Jacksonville only put up 25 points, but they were able to quiet the Bills for just long enough to hold on to the win.
San Francisco 49ers
Winless Watch! (AKA the race for Caleb)
The last team standing! There’s still a long way to go, guys, but at least for now the Carolina Panthers are currently in the driver’s seat for the first pick of the draft. How long will their winless streak last? Check in again next week to find out!
Winners and Losers
Chicago Bears (1-4)
Jacksonville Jaguars (3-2)
Atlanta Falcons (3-2)
Detroit Lions (4-1)
Indianapolis Colts (3-2)
Miami Dolphins (4-1)
New Orleans Saints (3-2)
Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2)
Philadelphia Eagles (5-0)
Cincinnati Bengals (2-3)
New York Jets (2-3)
Kansas City Chiefs (4-1)
San Francisco 49ers (5-0)
Las Vegas Raiders (2-3)
Washington Commanders (2-3)
Buffalo Bills (3-2)
Houston Texans (2-3)
Carolina Panthers (0-5)
Tennessee Titans (2-3)
New York Giants (1-4)
New England Patriots (1-4)
Baltimore Ravens (3-2)
Los Angeles Rams (2-3)
Arizona Cardinals (1-4)
Denver Broncos (1-4)
Minnesota Vikings (1-4)
Dallas Cowboys (3-2)
Green Bay Packers (2-3)
Teams on Bye
Cleveland Browns (2-2)
Los Angeles Chargers (2-2)
Seattle Seahawks (3-1)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-1)
Standout Individual Performers
DJ Moore, WR, Chicago Bears
8 receptions on 10 targets for 230 receiving yards and 3 TD’s.
The Chicago Bears hadn’t had anything to cheer about in their 0-4 start, but DJ Moore gave the fans something to cheer about this week. Just a week removed from the viral discussion where he agreed with an opponent that Chicago weren’t using him right, he showed how good he really is. Justin Fields’ favourite weapon saw 10 targets and caught 8 of them for a whopping 230 receiving yards and a hat-trick of TD’s.
Ja’Marr Chase, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
15 receptions on 19 targets for 192 receiving yards and 3 TD’s.
He’s back!!! To say that the Bengals offense hasn’t been firing on all cylinders yet this season would be an astronomical understatement. However, this week was personal for Ja’Marr Chase. Last week after a tough loss, he told the journalists after the game “I’m always open… I’m always f****** open.” This week he proved it right. He caught a career-high 15 receptions on 19 targets, for 192 receiving yards and 3 TD’s. Then, in an iconic move, he tweeted: “7/11”.
Zack Moss, RB, Indianapolis Colts
23 carries for 165 rushing yards and 2 TD’s, plus 2 receptions for 30 yards.
Fantasy football players around the world rejoiced as the ink on Jonathan Taylor’s new contract dried. A superstar who would have been a first-round pick if not for the question marks around when he would actually debut this season. This week he was on the active roster for the first time and people were rightfully excited. But it wasn’t Taylor who had the big game. His ‘backup’ Zack Moss absolutely balled out, again. On 23 carries he put up 165 rushing yards, finding the end zone twice. Maybe next week, JT fans.
Breece Hall, RB, New York Jets
22 carries for 177 rushing yards and a TD, plus 3 receptions for 17 yards.
Speaking of running backs that fantasy owners are excited about, Robert Saleh made the announcement this week that Breece Hall’s limited workload was a thing of the past. It’s wise to be sceptical when coaches talk about how many touches they’re going to give someone, but he wasn’t lying. After 10, 4, 12 and 6 rush attempts respectively through the first month, Hall was handed the ball 22 times in Denver this week. He made good use of the volume, recording 177 yards on the ground and scoring his first touchdown of the season.
Travis Etienne, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
26 carries for 136 rushing yards and 2 TD’s, plus 4 receptions for 48 yards in London!
Don’t you just hate it when you’re playing against yourself in fantasy football and you have the best game of your career!?
Travis Etienne did just that as he wowed the London crowd this week in an impressive victory over Buffalo. The third-year back put up 136 rushing yards on 26 rush attempts – the second most he’s ever had in his young career -, while also finding the end zone twice for just the second time since he was drafted 25th overall in 2021. I think that he was joking when he suggested he was upset about his performance costing him a week in fantasy, because it looked like he was having a blast, from my seat!
Tyreek Hill, WR, Miami Dolphins
8 receptions on 9 targets for 181 receiving yards and a TD.
If you had to guess a player that would make it into my ‘standout performers’ segment each week, I would wage that Hill would probably be in your first three guesses. Every week he seems to dominate. This time out was no different. Tua targeted him 9 times, connecting 8 times for a ridiculous 181 receiving yards and a score in their comfortable 31-16 win over the Giants. Their connection continues to evolve and they show no signs of slowing down. The Dolphins, this week, surpassed the ‘Greatest Show on Turf’ for the most yards of offense in the first five weeks of a season ever. Hill’s role is as big as anyone’s in that impressive record.
Jason Pinnock, S, New York Giants
4 solo tackles, a forced fumble and a 102-yard TD!
As I just said, the Giants struggled to hang with Miami when it came down to the big moments this week. However, there was one specific play on which they were absolutely electric. During the second quarter, while it was still very close, safety Jason Pinnock intercepted Tua in the end zone and returned it for an epic 102-yard pick-six.
George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers
3 receptions on 4 targets for 67 receiving yards and 3 TD’s.
Sometimes it’s easy to overlook tight ends in this segment, but this week George Kittle made it easy for me. On top of his stellar blocking, which you can rely on every week, this week’s matchup with their arch-rival Dallas Cowboys seemingly sparked some extra determination from Kittle. He was fired up in this one, and it showed, as he turned his three receptions into the first hat-trick of his career.
The T-shirt he wore under his jersey was a nice touch, too.
A.J. Epenesa, DE, Buffalo Bills
2 solo tackles and 2 assists including 2.0 Sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
While Travis Etienne was the brightest star in the London game on Sunday, it would be rude to ignore the efforts of A.J. Epenesa. The Bills offense wasn’t firing, so it put a lot of pressure on their D. Epenesa was the best player on said defense, recording two sacks on his two solo tackles, as well as a pair of assists. He forced and recovered a fumble, too, but it wasn’t quite enough.
Trey Hendrickson, DE, Cincinnati Bengals
2 solo tackles and 2 assists including 2.5 Sacks and a forced fumble.
The Cincinnati Bengals made quite the announcement of their return this weekend, especially through the offensive domination of Ja’Marr Chase, in particular. However, it would be disrespectful to ignore the defensive efforts of Trey Hendrickson. The Bengals defensive end wreaked havoc in the Arizona backfield. He made 4 combined tackles, 2 solo and 2 assists, with most of those coming on Josh Dobbs, resulting in 2.5 Sacks.
Zach Sieler, DT, Miami Dolphins
6 solo tackles and an assist including 2.0 Sacks.
I always enjoy getting the opportunity to show love to a player who I genuinely didn’t know by name before the week started. The player I have discovered this week is Dolphins defensive tackle Zach Sieler. This week, he was very involved in both the run game and in Miami’s pass rush. He made 6 solo tackles, had one assist and recorded 2.0 Sacks in their win.
Stat Leaders Through Week 5
Passing Yards – Tua Tagovailoa MIA, 1614
Passing TD’s – Kirk Cousins MIN, 13
Rushing Yards – Christian McCaffrey SF, 510
Rushing TD’s – Christian McCaffrey SF and Raheem Mostert MIA, 7
Receiving Yards – Tyreek Hill MIA, 651
Receiving TD’s – Stefon Diggs BUF, Tyreek Hill MIA and D.J. Moore CHI, 5
Total TD’s – Christian McCaffrey SF and Raheem Mostert MIA, 8
Tackles (combined) – Zaire Franklin IND, 69
Sacks – T.J. Watt PIT, 8.0
Interceptions – 4 tied at 3.
Week 6 Preview – What to watch
Teams on Bye
Green Bay Packers (2-3)
Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2)
Week 6 Best Games
Dallas Cowboys @ Los Angeles Chargers
Seattle Seahawks @ Cincinnati Bengals
San Francisco 49ers @ Cleveland Browns
Tyler’s Bold Week 6 Prediction
Jimmy Garoppolo will throw two interceptions as Bill Belichick shows his prodigy whose boss.
Week 6 Storylines
Who will take home the W from the final London game of the year? Ravens @ Titans, 2:30pm
Can Kansas City pile on to Denver’s painful start to the season? Broncos @ Chiefs, TNF
Will Minnesota finally get themselves back on track with a road win? Vikings @ Bears, 6pm
Seattle return from their bye to take on a rejuvenated Cincinnati team. Seahawks @ Bengals 6pm
An elite offense vs an elite defense, who will come out on top? 49ers @ Browns, 6pm
Tuck rule revenge game or Josh McDaniels revenge game, your choice. Patriots @ Raiders, 9:05pm
A high flying Detroit team travel to Tampa Bay who have had a strong start. Lions @ Buccaneers, 9:25pm
A prime time battle of New York. Giants @ Bills, SNF
Dallas’ defense look to bounce back against a very good offense in their second-straight prime time game. Cowboys @ Chargers, MNF