"The Stack" 12-10-18
The Miracle in Miami. Kenyon Drake took a pitch and ran past Rob Gronkowski and the rest of the New England Patriots to lift the Dolphins to a miraculous 34-33 win.
The Stack is back on this Monday and boy were there some great NFL games on Sunday. Week 14 had a little bit of everything and we have reaction to it all so let’s get right to “the stack” for today, Monday, December 10th:
Jets 27 Bills 23
In a battle of rookie quarterbacks, it was Sam Darnold who got the better of Josh Allen in this one. Allen is really impressing with his legs, but he turns the ball over too much. Darnold has done that too, but he played a cleaner game than Allen and as a result, the Jets picked up their fourth game of the season.
Panthers 20 Browns 26
Cleveland Browns quarterback (and Oklahoma alum) Baker Mayfield celebrated Kyler Murray’s Heisman Trophy Saturday night (more on that tomorrow) with an impressive showing against a desperate Carolina Panthers team. He had a perfect passer rating for a while in this game and made some big plays throughout the game. Christian McCaffrey had two rushing touchdowns for the Panthers early on and then got bottled up the rest of the afternoon. The Panthers slide continues while the Browns are still alive for an AFC North title.
Falcons 20 Packers 34
The Green Bay Packers responded in a positive way after the firing of head coach Mike McCarthy. Aaron Rodgers played well. Aaron Jones ran well and the defense limited the big play ability of the Atlanta Falcons, who clearly have lost some interest in the season since their season is all but over. Interim head coach Joe Philbin gets the win in his first game.
Colts 24 Texans 21
The Houston Texans’ win steak is over at nine and it ended at the hands of the team that the Texans began their streak on. Andrew Luck was brilliant throwing for close to 400 yards. T.Y. Hilton loves playing the Texans as he had nine catches for 199 yards. It was the dumb jump offsides by Jadeveon Clowney I believe that sealed this win for the Colts who are looking like a very dangerous wild card team.
Ravens 24 Chiefs 27
What an amazing game. The Ravens played ball-control to keep the football out of Kansas City’s hands and it worked for a while. The Chiefs were up 17-10 until Baltimore rattled off two straight touchdowns to take the lead. Then things got interesting. Pat Mahomes found Tyreek Hill for 40-some yards on 4th and 9. A few plays later, they scored. The pass Mahomes threw to Hill was brilliant. Then the Ravens fumbled, but Harrison Butker missed the potential game-winning field goal for the Chiefs. No worries, though. He kicked the go-ahead field goal in overtime and then the defense came up with a stand to keep the Chiefs comfortably in the one seed in the AFC. Tough loss for the Ravens. The Chiefs have to worry though about the injuries to Hill and running back Spencer Ware. This could derail what looks like such a promising season.
Patriots 33 Dolphins 34
Game of the day without a doubt! These two teams went back-and-forth in the first half with both offenses scoring seemingly at will. The defenses stiffened up in the second half, and it looked like the Patriots had all but won when they kicked a field goal with less than 20 seconds left to put them up 33-28. Then the Dolphins pulled what has been dubbed the “Miracle in Miami” with a couple of pitches on the game’s final play. Kenyon Drake got it and ran past a few Patriots players and then finally Rob Gronkowski to get in the endzone. What a win for the Dolphins! Their playoff hopes remain alive. Once again, the Patriots fall flat in South Beach.
Saints 28 Buccaneers 14
The New Orleans Saints offense looked largely lost for much of the game until Taysom Hill’s blocked punt in the third quarter instilled new life and energy throughout the entire team. 25 straight points later, and the Saints emerged with a 28-14 win over the Bucs. One has to wonder though if there is a cause for concern with the way the offense has played the last two weeks. That needs to get solved before the playoffs hit.
Giants 40 Washington 16
So Mark Sanchez showed why he is no longer a starting quarterback in the NFL. He threw a couple of interceptions and looked absolutely awful as Washington fell into a 40-0 hole to the New York Giants who were without Odell Beckham Jr. Saquon Barkley ran for over 170 yards and two touchdowns and the defense scored a touchdown as well. Josh Johnson finished up for Washington. Again, Colin Kaepernick does not have a job, but Sanchez and Johnson do. If that doesn’t scream collusion, I don’t know what does.
Bengals 21 Chargers 26
Spirited effort by the Bengals who saw a good all-around day from running back Joe Mixon on the ground and receiving, but the Chargers were just too much. Even without Melvin Gordon, once again this team did pretty good things, but they weren’t crisp. Phillip Rivers and company know they must play better if they want to beat the Chiefs in Arrowhead Thursday night.
Broncos 14 49ers 20
I thought word coming from Denver was that the Broncos weren’t going to have a letdown even with Emmanuel Sanders going down for the year with an Achilles injury in practice during the week. Evidently things changed, because the 49ers were clearly the better team on Sunday. And memo to the Broncos (and to any other team that plays San Francisco), you might want to cover tight end George Kittle. Kittle had 210 yards receiving and a touchdown…in the first half! It’s a shame he didn’t get more in the second half, but he was almost the sole reason why the Broncos lost this game.
Lions 17 Cardinals 3
Ugly game all-around in the desert. Matthew Stafford played like crap. The Cardinals offense played like crap. Had the Lions not gotten a pick-six off of Josh Rosen, there my have been no touchdowns in this one. Nice to see Zach Zenner get the ball a dozen times and score a touchdown. Both of these teams stink and that was evident in this one.
Eagles 23 Cowboys 29
This game was not great for three plus quarters, but the fourth quarter and overtime delivered. Wide receiver Amari Cooper was fantastic for Dallas, catching three touchdowns and getting 210 receiving yards in the process. His catch that resulted in a touchdown in overtime was pure concentration. What a game. The Eagles kept answering the Cowboys, but the Eagles defense didn’t do enough to get them the win. Make that five wins in a row for the Cowboys who have a pretty good stranglehold on the NFC East.
Steelers 21 Raiders 24
Speaking of back and forth games, give credit to the Oakland Raiders who are showing that they aren’t quitting even though their season is all but complete. The way they kept bouncing back and regaining the lead against the Pittsburgh Steelers was admirable. JuJu Smith-Schuster nearly pulled off a “Miracle in Miami” of his own after getting a pitch and streaking down the sidelines. He got pushed out of bounds though and then kicker Chris Boswell slipped and his field goal attempt at the end of the game was blocked. Three straight losses for the Steelers and Big Ben had to leave the game before coming back late in the second half. All is not well in the Steel City.
Rams 6 Bears 15
What an awful game by the Los Angeles Rams. Jared Goff looked like the Jared Goff of his rookie season and the Rams offense was held in check by the vaunted Chicago Bears defense. The Bears defense forced, what, four turnovers and had a safety?! Todd Gurley couldn’t get going. Never mind that the Bears offense stunk up the joint. With that defense, they don’t need much offense. Huge win for the Bears as they get one step closer to winning the NFC North.
6-5-1 Minnesota Vikings @ 7-5 Seattle Seahawks 8:15 PM ET ESPN MNF
Big time game in the NFC Wild Card race tonight. The Seahawks are streaking having won five games in a row. The Vikings are an up-and-down team. This game is in primetime. The Vikings aren’t good in primetime. They say they want to run the ball more with Dalvin Cook. We’ll see if that actually happens. While I think they may be more talented than Seattle, they haven’t shown it much this season and on the road, I smell another L for the Vikings.
Prediction: Seahawks 24 Vikings 17
Coming up Tuesday: MNF reaction plus Heisman Trophy thoughts and more.