Full10Takeaways – Week 11

By Lawrence Vos (@NFLFanInEngland)

Bite Size NFL news from Week 11 
  • Oakland Raiders rookie fourth round DT Maxx Crosby had a monster 4 sacks against the Bengals to move up to joint 9th in the NFL and 3rd amongst rookies.
  • Sam Darnold had 4 TD passes for the New York Jets in their 17 point win against the Redskins, his first 4 TD day in his 20 game career.
  • Talking of the Redskins they managed their first TD since the 3rd Q against the Dolphins on October 13, thanks to second year RB Derrius Guice.
  • The Atlanta Falcons won their second game in a row whilst only allowing their opponents to get a single-digit score (this week 3 against the Panthers).
  • Minnesota’s 4 point win against Denver is the first time since 2014 a team has come back from 20 or more points at half-time to win a game.
  • With 788 rushing yards Ravens QB Lamar Jackson is ALREADY 7th in the all-time rushing yards gained by a QB in a season. He needs 252 in 6 games to get the crown.
  • Patriots WR Julian Edelman tossed the 2nd TD pass of his career to beat the Eagles. Edelman is one of 15 non-QBs to have a career perfect passer rating.
  • And a final historic appetiser – One former NFL non-QB leads the NFL all-time in passing yards (350), passing touchdowns (9) and interceptions (6) – take a bow Walter Payton. 

What everyone’s tucking in to

Steelers (5-5) @ Browns (4-6) 

The Steelers were on a four-game win streak, and the Browns were in danger of their entire season imploding as we went into this TNF divisional matchup. It was a torrid affair for the eyes, as Pittsburgh QB Mason Rudolph looked dreadful even before WR Ju-Ju Smith Schuster went out with concussion.

This was an old fashioned brutal game that was personified by a hit dished out by Browns safety Damarious Randall on WR Dionte Johnson that caused blood to come out of his ear. The hit could be justified as not a complete head hunt, but what followed was indescribably common assault. The Browns, who rode the storm of an ugly contest were 14 points up as the Steelers mounted a final meaningless drive.

With 14 seconds left Mason Rudolph threw a short pass that gained 11 yards, then all hell broke loose. Rudolph was drilled by DE Myles Garrett. Rudolph then tried to remove Garrett’s helmet and failed. Garrett then managed to remove Rudolph’s helmet and then five seconds later cracked Mason on the top of his skull with the black and gold lid. Steelers C Mike Pouncey reacted immediately and kicked Garrett whilst he was on the ground, pinned to the end-zone by Steelers G David DeCastro. To top it off Rudolph still vocalising his displeasure was knocked to the floor by Browns defender Larry Ogunjobi.

I’ve been watching the NFL since 1985 and I cannot recall an ending like this. Garrett, Pouncey and Ogunjobi were ejected from the game and soon after all received bans, Garrett suspended indefinitely, to definitely include any involvement with the 2019 NFL season.

Using a fist to punch someone in the face is bad enough, take the Andre Johnson Cortland Finnegan fight (Week 12 2010) as an example. A helmet did get ripped off but it was thrown away, to effectively level the playing field.

On Thursday night Myles Garrett used Rudolph’s helmet as a weapon to cause harm. This was not an accident, this was done with intent, albeit with red mist clogging up the former #1 overall pick’s ability to behave rationally.

This insanity has been unpicked by former players, journalists and fans across the globe. Garrett has already broken a quarterback’s leg (Trevor Siemian) this season, but he was not known as dirty. Now he will have the helmet hit follow his career…..that’s when he gets one back. 


Texans (6-4) v Ravens (8-2) 

Billed as the matchup between the two most exciting dual-threat quarterbacks on the NFL (sorry Josh Allen you are a respectable third) this was supposed to be a classic high scoring contest coming down to who had the ball last. Instead we got one team on fire and one team on ice.

Despite a non-scoring first quarter this was not going to be the Houston Texans day as their first three drives ended on a turnover (fumble lost), a failed fourth down attempt and a punt. After an equally frustrating first period Lamar Jackson woke up and went 5-5 including the opening score to the lesser spotted Seth Roberts. From that point on the Ravens flicked a switch that they didn’t turn off until the fourth quarter.

The Ravens got a second TD, LJax to TE Mark Andrews to take a 14-0 lead at the half. When Jackson threw his third TD pass on the opening drive of the third quarter, to RB Mark Ingram II, it was effectively game over.

One play of note in the second half was Lamar’s 39 yard dash on a 2nd and 1. Another entry in the Baltimore QBs MVP application form. The Ravens finished with 263 yards rushing, thanks in part to a 63 yard TD rumble by Gus ‘the mini bus’ Edwards in the late stages. 


Chiefs (7-4) v Chargers (4-7) in Mexico

Philip Rivers saw his season committed to the grave in a country the celebrates the Day of the Dead, as Mexico hosted the final International regular season game of the season. Four interceptions, including one in the end-zone, on a potential game-tying pass was a microcosm of another failing season for a Chargers team that on paper has talent throughout.

The Chiefs Patrick Mahomes was not en-fuego in the air, but some chunky RPO (run pass option) plays yielded chain moving first downs precisely when they were needed. Veteran KC RB LeSean McCoy, who carries the ball in the same way a granny would after collecting a seeded bloomer from their local bakery, was able to take his loaf into the end-zone. He was also targeted 6 times, hauling in 4-28 to outpace KC’s number one WR Sammy Watkins (2-26). Big respect to L.A. RB Austin Ekeler who had 8-108 in the air. His 65 catches only trails leading pass catcher WR Keenan Allen by 5 pigskins.

The Chiefs are still atop the AFC West, and undefeated in the division, but the rather stinky breath of the Oakland Raiders is fresh in the face of those in red and white as the pirates trail by one game and are on a three-game win streak.


Something to finish us off…

Matty Ice cracks top 10 

With his seventh 300+ passing game of the 2019 under his belt Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan moved to number 10 in the all-time regular season passing charts.

The man he happened to pass has a bronze bust in the NFL and CFL Hall of Fame – Mr Warren Moon. Moon in fact has a Super Bowl winners ring, as a Seahawks broadcaster, earned 13 years after he was enshrined in Canton.

Ryan himself will tip over 50,000 yards by the end of this season, having reached 49,383 since his 2008 rookie campaign. Ryan has started 183 games in his career, having missed his first start in since 2009 just a few weeks ago. An absolute model of professionalism, Ryan is Hall of Fame worthy with 313 career TDs and just 142 interceptions. Don’t expect Ryan to run, but be instead mildly surprised that he has darted for 1,225 yards on the ground and 9 scores.

Four Pro Bowls, one All Pro appearance, one NFL MVP and one Super Bowl played is not the most impressive CV of all time, but anyone who reaches 50,000 passing yards, which Ryan will, likely by Week 14, deserves a moment of praise. 

Power to the Rankings!

In Today’s podcast, TIm, Lee and Rob argue about the differences in their NFL Power Rankings.

Why is Rob low on Kansas? Why is Lee high on the Redskins? Why is Tim loving the Panthers?

Before that we mull over the season ticket announcement fallout fracas along with some other NFL news.

Steve Raynes from Kickers Matter tackles the quiz as we near the end of the champion of champions playoff. Rob has a surprise for Tim and Lee and we announce some super guests for next week!

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Where Do They Go From Here? Vikings

After our divisional season review podcasts, we are now looking to the future and asking where each franchise goes from here. We put ourselves in the chair of being GM or the owner and going over what moves we would make in order to win a Superbowl, make the playoffs or just regain some pride…

Today we take a look at the Minnesota Vikings.

Don’t forget to check out the NFC North podcast where we talked to Paul Berryman who plays for the Dunfermline Kings and asked for his thoughts.

How Did Last Season Go?

Comparing to most recent previous seasons, this season was nothing short of a disaster.

After getting to the Championship game in the 2017 season and “upgrading” at the QB position, the Vikings fell well short of expectations which would’ve been to appear in the Super Bowl. Dalvin Cook could not stay healthy again and there were more holes in the o line than a extra large cheese grater. There were more than eyebrows raised when Buffalo came in to town in week 3 and annihilated them in the first half.

Firing their OC John DeFillippo midway through the season, which showed how happy they were with the way the team were playing on offence.

That said, apart from that, not really any surprising results in the season, with all their other losses coming to teams who made the playoffs so it’s fair to say the winners’s schedule could be as much to blame as any other excuses.

Bottom line is that there was no January football for Minnesota thus, a failure of a season.

Housekeeping

Minnesota pick at 18, 50 and 81 within the top 100 and are 2nd worst in terms of cap space available at the time of writing.

Outgoings

Anthony Barr, Sheldon Richardson and Latavius Murray are the most notable names on the Free Agency market. Oh, and Trevor Siemian. Silly me.

Incomings

Due to the lack of cap space, I’m not sure we’ll be troubled too much by the Entrance door apart from the draft. Depth on the offensive line is an obvious need as well as a bit or two on defence to cover the departures. They will need to replace Latavius Murray due to Cook’s unreliability in terms of staying on the field too.

Wouldn’t be surprised to see Minnesota take a Tight End in the draft considering the talent in the 2019 class.

Outlook for Next Year

Looking at the landscape of the division, the outlook is a murky one.

The schedule will ease up slightly but have a difficult away schedule including visits to Dallas, Los Angeles Chargers, Kansas City and Seattle to add on top to their divisional away trips to Lambeau and Soldier Field. As always, a lot will come down to the divisional games, where the Vikings went 3-2-1 last season.

I’m not sure how much more Cousins can improve from last season after passing for over 4000 yards, 30 TDs and 10INT.

Prediction

They will need to be more effective on the ground behind an improved Offensive line and have a healthy Dalvin Cook to play January football next season. That said, I’m not convinced Green Bay are totally right at the moment so the chances are there for 2 teams to come from the North for the playoffs next season. Minnesota Vikings to be one of those teams. If they can sort out their line issues, they could quite easily take the division title back.

Fantasy Football

Kirk Cousins – later round QB, low QB 1/QB2

Dalvin Cook – 2nd Round , mid/low RB1

Adam Thielen – 3rd Round, WR2/ WR1 upside

Stefon Diggs – 3rd Round, WR2 / WR1 upside

Kyle Rudolph – just no.

9 Disappointing Fantasy players in 2019

Hey everyone, it’s my newest blog from the fantasy world!

Week 9 is in the books and today we are looking at the top 9 (with 9 weeks completed, get it?!) disappointing Fantasy Players so far. You have probably got in your own minds some players that haven’t performed on your team and you are thinking you will never ever play those players again dropping them in disgust. We all have those cursed players but you know in a year or so you may just be tempted and cast your eye over them. It happens every year!

Imagine this, you get the first overall pick this year and opt for Le’Veon Bell and then follow that pick up with LeSean McCoy and then you hit Gronk… Yep, I’d be pretty mad too… That happened to my pal and he has been playing catch up ever since… sad times *evil laugh*.

Anyway, let’s get a bit more cheerful and continue on in our quest of mediocrity or just down right stinkers, in no particular order my top nine players that have been disappointing in 2018 season* in the standard scoring format.

  1. Matt Stafford in at number one currently ranked at 20 of QBs – he has scored over 20 points on two occasions and despite quite a porous defence, the Lions are still attempting to get a run game going. Fumbling and being sacked (10 TIMES this past week against the Vikings) are creeping in the game repertoire and it’s not a good look fantasy wise.
  2. Running Back Lamar Miller (RB22) has only posted up 3 weeks of over 10 points and being the only real running threat, this should be more. With Deshaun Watson slinging the ball like he does though we can’t really blame poor Lamar for this lack of production, the Texans just have better options out wide.
  3. Mr Consistent, consistently bad, Keenan Allen is next with just 3 games over 10 points and one touchdown this year. Woof. And he is not worth trying to pick up for the run ‘just in case’ he has a tough run of fixtures to round off the year.   
  4. Kyle Rudolph makes the list despite the TE friendly QB in Kirk Cousins. Rudolph is not getting the looks even with a weakened Vikings Running game, although admittedly the return of Cook will strengthen that. But this means that Kirk might not be throwing as much and Rudolph will lose the shine on his red nose even more.
  5. Gronk gets on the list, a great first outing and then disappointment. Niggling injuries admittedly have hampered production but what I don’t get is why he says ‘he is good to go’ when clearly he is not and the stats show that. 1 touchdown this season and in a weakened TE field, Gronk is ranked 11th. Just awful.
  6. Larry Fitzgerald (apart from the last two weeks) hasn’t produced averaging around 3.5 points per game to week 7. This is just isn’t very fantasy friendly.
  7. Mark Ingram, probably a harsh inclusion being suspended for 4 games but his 5th game offered so much promise with 2 TDs and we all thought he was back… but after that, the following three games have shown us that Kamara is the number 1 in the backfield and that is hugely disappointing to those that stashed him in rounds 4/5 of the draft.
  8. Russell Wilson has been another I think could be considered a little disappointment this year. He just doesn’t seem to have that impact that he used to and is not rushing as much. Maybe I am being a little harsh, but his biggest week has been 23 points and only topped 20 points two other times and these were marginally. Think the magic has been lost.
  9. I am a Skins fan but I’m putting the whole Skins offense on this list. All apart from Peterson who has shown flashes of brilliance. There is not one offensive weapon that you can rely on to produce. Personally, I can’t wait to see Derrius Guice there, we need him and could be a great fantasy player next year… That concludes the list! This also is not to say that the above players won’t have a great last few games but to this point they may have burnt you, I apologise on their behalf. 

    Which player has disappointed you most this season? Let us know! 

    *This list doesn’t include Le’Veon Bell, that would be too obvious. I hope he find it in his heart to apologise to the millions who spent their first pick on him.

Let me know of any players I have missed by getting in touch on Twitter @ScottfMackay or maybe get in touch with the podcast @full10yards where there is currently a free Larry Fitzgerald jersey to be won!