- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner1 hr ago
It only took a fortnight for Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones to downgrade Brandon Weeden from the most "gifted passer" in football history to merely a "limited" quarterback who isn't a difference-maker.
Two days after Weeden completed all seven of his passes to finish off a 20-10 win over the NFC East rival Philadelphia Eagles after starting Cowboys QB Tony Romo went down with a broken collarbone in Week 2, Jones could barely contain himself while raving about his backup in an interview with 105.3 The Fan.
“This quarterback Weeden can drive the ball down field,” Jones said. “He’s a thing of beauty on throwing a football. His passing motion and his arm, frankly, you won’t see a more gifted passer, power, accuracy, the entire aspect of it. If he can basically prepare, be the starting quarterback, come in and execute and keep his head right, then I feel good about Weeden.”Sun, Oct 4Dallas20 - 26New OrleansGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner8 hrs ago
They love their football in Texas and they take it seriously, all the way up to the guy in charge of the state.
Gov. Greg Abbott, from his verified personal Twitter feed, sent an angry tweet immediately after the Dallas Cowboys lost their second straight game by allowing a long New Orleans Saints touchdown in overtime.
*#%>¥! @Cowboy defense. More porous than the Texas border.
Abbott is clearly a big sports fan, as he was congratulating the Houston Astros for making the Major League Baseball playoffs and Texas Rangers for winning the AL West on Sunday. But Abbott's good mood didn't last through the night. Not when the Cowboys lose, especially the way they lost in overtime.
Others around the state were probably peeved too, they just aren't big-name politicians who would think to compare Dallas' defense to the state's border on Twitter.
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- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner9 hrs ago
Drew Brees hit a couple notable career throwing marks on Sunday night, passing for his 5,000th career completion and his 400th touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys. The former set his team on the winning path, and the latter won the game for the Saints in overtime, 26-20.
There was a time, not so long ago, when New Orleans-Dallas would have been must-watch television. Brees vs. Tony Romo, among so many others, made The Big Easy vs. The Big D one of the year's great showdowns. But Romo is on the sidelines. Brees is a weak-armed shadow of his former self, at least for the moment. The game ended on a high note for Brees, but the overwhelming message is clear: These are two teams that don't scare anybody.
Brees, who had been limited in action because of injuries sustained earlier this season, threw completion No. 5,000 to Josh Hill in the first quarter for a go-ahead touchdown, No. 399 on his career list. He would finish 33 of 41 for 359 yards and two touchdowns against a depleted and inexperienced Dallas defense.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner9 hrs ago
This is why it makes sense to take a look at the past schedule in the NFL, and not just the standings.
A lot of people were anointing the Arizona Cardinals as one of the best teams in football after three weeks. They had defeated the New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears and San Francisco 49ers, arguably the three worst teams in the NFL.
The Cardinals don’t look like one of the best teams in the NFL anymore. The St. Louis Rams came into Arizona and won 24-22. The Rams never trailed. The Cardinals weren’t blown out or anything — they out-gained the Rams 447-328 and had a chance to win in the last two minutes but turned it over on downs — but they also didn’t look all that dominant either.
The Cardinals aren’t a bad team, but are they one of the absolute best? Maybe not. The Rams’ offensive line hasn’t been able to block well all season, but it helped rookie Todd Gurley gain 144 yards in the second half. Nick Foles isn’t a great quarterback, but he completed 16-of-24 passes for 171 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions against Arizona. The offense that everyone was so excited about didn’t score a touchdown until late in the fourth quarter, when the Rams were up 24-15.Sun, Oct 4St. Louis24 - 22ArizonaGame Recap
- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner11 hrs ago
Did you miss any of the Week 4 action in the NFL? We've got you covered. Here are five plays you shouldn't miss from Sunday's games:
Three's a Crowder
The Washington Redskins made some terrific catches in traffic in their comeback win over the Philadelphia Eagles. You might have seen the game-winning catch to Pierre Garcon in the final minute. But did you catch the grab Redskins rookie Jamison Crowder made amid three Eagles defenders? Watch as Kirk Cousins dials up the pass in a crowd.
Another rookie showcase
Eagles rookie Nelson Agholor was a standout at USC and a first-round pick, but his ascension has been a bit slow with the offense struggling in Philly. However, Sam Bradford showed he still can throw deep, and Agholor rewarded him with a terrific, one-handed grab for 45 yards. It's a start, right?
Nothing against the Crowder and Agholor catches, which were actual catches. But we want to spotlight what went down as an incompletion. Why? Because Odell Beckham Jr. was involved. Watch Beckham climb the ladder, do his Spiderman impression, make a grab that rivals his rookie-year gem and ... who cares if he was out of bounds? This is insane.Sun, Oct 4Philadelphia20 - 23WashingtonGame Recap
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner12 hrs ago
Look, we get it: playing football is tiring work. But perhaps the field of play is not the best place for a nap, am I right?
Stedman Bailey of the St. Louis Rams had just scored on a pass from Nick Foles to help the Rams to a victory over the Arizona Cardinals, and decided to offer up his own celebration: a quiet, respectful nap. Technically, it should have drawn a flag, since you're not allowed to use the ball as a prop or go to the ground in celebrations—an asinine rule that has no real purpose other than to quash fun.
Fox Sports rules analyst Mike Pereira believes it will cost Bailey $8,681 for his little nap, and if the NFL does levy that fine, Rams fans should start a Kickstarter to pay the fine:
There's a reason they "play" this "game"...it's supposed to have at least a tiny measure of fun. Don't fine Bailey, NFL. Let the man catch some shuteye in peace.
Listen to Yahoo Sports' Grandstanding podcast for more NFL coverage:
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner13 hrs ago
After losing to the Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals by a combined score of 90-25 the last two weeks, the San Francisco 49ers had to make a Week 4 statement against the visiting Green Bay Packers.
They made a statement, all right.
Actually, it was a Packers player who made the defining statement of San Francisco's 2015 season, yelling in the direction of 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick after a negative yardage play. If my ears aren't deceiving me, the microphones pick up this gem of a diss: "You ain't no Russell Wilson, bro."
There was once an argument whether the Seattle Seahawks quarterback or Kaepernick was the NFL's best young quarterback not named Andrew Luck. Wilson ended the debate by defeating the 49ers on his way to a Super Bowl title in the 2013 season and making a return trip to the championship game last season.Sun, Oct 4Green Bay17 - 3San FranciscoGame Recap
- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner13 hrs ago
Even for the Cleveland Browns, this was bad.
Josh McCown had a terrific game in Week 4 . Rookie Duke Johnson was great. The special teams were excellent ... that is, until the penultimate snap.
The Browns rallied from eight points down to tie the game with just over two minutes left and appeared to be heading to overtime against the San Diego Chargers when kicker Josh Lambo missed a 39-yard field-goal attempt.
But ... Browns. Tramon Williams was offsides on the attempt, giving the Chargers a second chance. Do you even have to ask if Lambo made it? Of course he did, from 34 yards out and with zero seconds on the untimed kick, and the Chargers won in the most Browns way imaginable.
It was another heartbreaking loss for a franchise that has made a lifetime of them, and it undercut the performance from McCown, who proved some doubters wrong in this one. He hit Gary Barnidge on the final touchdown, and the McCown-to-Taylor Gabriel two-point conversion tied it up.Sun, Oct 4Cleveland27 - 30San DiegoGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner13 hrs ago
When you draft a player in the top 10, he needs to be a big impact guy.
Did the St. Louis Rams discover a pair of them on Sunday, in a 24-22 upset over the previously undefeated Arizona Cardinals?
We all figured running back Todd Gurley would emerge as one when he was healthy, and that day was Sunday. Gurley had 2 yards on four carries in the first half, then ended up with his first career 100-yard game in the second half alone. His two first-down runs in the final two minutes sealed the victory. The Rams didn't rush Gurley back from an ACL injury suffered last season at Georgia. Gurley was still the 10th pick of the draft despite the injury because of the talent he flashed against the Cardinals. He ended up with 146 rushing yards. No need to worry any more about how many carries Gurley might get; on Sunday he showed he's ready to be the Rams' featured back. Probably for many years to come.
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner15 hrs ago
Three weeks ago, new Eagles running back DeMarco Murray told reporters in Philadelphia, "The only thing that matters is wins. Not yards, not records, none of that stuff. You know, at the end of the day, it’s that one column, and that’s wins and losses." After yet another loss, Murray added a caveat to that statement.
Murray believes more carries would result in more yards and more wins, or at least that's what he seemed to suggest after a 23-20 loss to the Washington Redskins on Sunday. Here's what Philadelphia Inquirer beat reporter Zach Berman relayed from the locker room after the Eagles fell to last place in the NFC East:
Is DeMarco Murray getting enough touches? Murray: "No, I'm not. I don't think I am."...Said he knew what he signed up for, but expected more