2018 NFL Schedule - Weekly Grid
Did Bryant engage in just a bit of schadenfreude? His Twitter activity very much indicated that was, in fact, the case. The team released Bryant and did not replace him with a top-caliber wide receiving talent, preferring instead to sign the likes of Allen Hurns and Deonte Thompson, while drafting Michael Gallup and penciling in Cole Beasley for a big role.
Dallas also set itself up for second-guessing by releasing longtime kicker Dan Bailey, known for his consistent accuracy, in favor of Brett Maher, whose only professional experience came in the Canadian Football League. When Maher missed his only attempt Sunday, from 47 yards, Bryant was ready:. The patience of fans in South Florida is being tested, as the game between the host Dolphins and Titans has experienced multiple delays because of lightning. Having started at 1: An injured elbow was listed as the reason Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota was replaced in the third quarter by Blaine Gabbert.
Tennessee coaches, however, may have been thinking about pulling Mariota based on his performance. The final two passes thrown by the fourth-year quarterback were intercepted, at which point he had completed nine of 16 passes for just yards and no touchdowns. Gabbert promptly led a nine-play touchdown drive. Tom Brady is old, very old by NFL standards. He set the tone early, finding the magic with Rob Gronkowski on a vintage Gronk touchdown in the first quarter against the Texans.
He went on to complete 26 of 39 passes for yards and three touchdowns. A Drew Brees-Ryan Fitzpatrick shootout, just like everybody predicted.
Brees passed for yards and Fitzpatrick, playing with Jameis Winston suspended, had and four touchdowns. Before the season, Buccaneers Coach Dirk Koetter recently would not verbally commit to giving Winston his job back, but Fitzpatrick will presumably have to maintain a high level of play, something with which he has struggled throughout his journeyman career.
One of the most compelling story lines of the season concerned the return of Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, who was playing in his first regular season game in days. Luck bounced up and Williams was just plain bounced, ejected from the game. Luck completed 39 of 53 passes for yards and two touchdowns, but the result was the same as it has often been in the Luck era, with Cincinnati winning The Jaguars were forced to adjust to the loss of running back Leonard Fournette to a hamstring injury in the second quarter against the Giants.
Yeldon came on to replace him and promptly scored. Fournette had 12 carries for 55 yards when he was injured. What to make of the Giants? Eli Manning completed 23 of 37 passes for yards and Barkley had 18 carries for yards in the loss.
Mercifully, rookie Josh Allen replaced Nathan Peterman, whose Buffalo Bills had all of one first down while being blown out by the Ravens, in the third quarter. Peterman had 24 yards passing and two interceptions before he was removed and Baltimore went on to a win. Forget, for a moment, rules about what constitutes a catch. It came into play several times in the early games, with Ben Roethlisberger, Jimmy Garoppolo and Andrew Luck twice among the beneficiaries. Roughing the passer call on Myles Garrett.
Landed on Roethlisberger with his body weight. A fourth down stop turned into a touchdown the very next play. While Rob Gronkowski was mulling whether to retire, the Patriots were thinking about trading him. Say hello to male cheerleaders.
Richard Sherman predicts a work stoppage after the season. Andrew Luck tells of a snowboard accident that hurt the AC joint in his shoulder.
Biggest moments from NFL Week 1: By Cindy Boren and. Sports reporter covering national topics, as well as supporting coverage of D. She switched to full-time writing, focusing on national sports stories and issues, when she founded The Early Lead blog in Sports Bog, scouring the Web to bring readers items of interest, both serious and amusing.
He also covers fantasy football. He came to The Post in The story must be told. Latavius Murray rush to the middle for 4 yards to the SF9. Tackled by Elijah Lee. Vikings Field Goal Attempt, 3: Vikings Passing TD, Vikings Interception TD, Vikings Passing TD, 4: Logan Cooke punts for 41 yards to NYG Kaelin Clay - no return. Tackled by Kaelin Clay.
Jaguars Field Goal Attempt, Giants Field Goal Attempt, 0: Jaguars Field Goal Attempt, 7: Jaguars Passing TD, 2: Yeldon 1 yd pass from Blake Bortles Josh Lambo kick. Giants Field Goal Attempt, 9: Jaguars Interception TD, Giants Rushing TD, Tackled by Stephon Gilmore. Patriots Passing TD, Texans Field Goal Attempt, 2: Texans Field Goal Attempt, 9: Norman is one of the better cornerbacks in the NFL, and Washington has used him both shadowing top receivers and playing exclusively on the left side.
Reed leads Washington with 33 catches third among NFL tight ends for yards. He's a difficult matchup, and the Lions have struggled defending the position this year, allowing seven touchdowns. Reed is in the NFL's concussion protocol; but, if he's cleared, he could give Van Noy fits in nickel packages. Lions RB Dwayne Washington. Washington is expected back this week after missing the last two games with a sprained ankle.
The rookie seventh-round pick returned to practice last Friday and could have played against the Rams, but the Lions chose to give him a few extra days of rest in order to ensure his health. Theo Riddick hasn't practiced in more than a week because of his own ankle sprain, which means Washington could play as the Lions' lead back this week. He has shown bits of explosiveness, scoring on a kick return and a long run in the preseason, and is averaging 4. TE Jordan Reed concussion. WR DeSean Jackson shoulder.
Washington has won four straight since an start. He had two TD catches in his last game vs. Detroit with San Francisco. He has a plus rating in seven of the past nine home games. Detroit DE Ezekiel Ansah had two sacks and a forced fumble in the last meeting. These teams are about as evenly matched as you can get, but the Redskins have a lot of momentum and have figured out how to win on the road. Oakland Raiders at Jacksonville Jaguars Terrelle Pryor passed for yards and the Raiders rushed for yards, including by Darren McFadden.
In their last game at Jacksonville and then-coach Jack Del Rio , the Raiders lost after holding a lead in the fourth quarter. The Raiders are smarting on both sides of the ball after a home loss to the Chiefs and will look to re-assert a running game especially if Latavius Murray has recovered from turf toe.
Actually both teams should have the same goal: Run the ball and stay away from the costly penalties. Every week the Jaguars talk about how important it is to have a stout running game complement the passing attack. But four of the five weeks talk is all it was. Only in the Indianapolis game when they rushed for yards did the Jaguars rushed for more than 60 yards in a game. If they can't gain yardage on the ground against a porous Oakland defense that ranks third from last in the NFL in rushing yards allowed AND rushing yards per attempt, the Jaguars may not be able to run the ball on any team this year.
The Raiders rank last in total yards allowed per game yards per play heading into Week 7 of the NFL schedule. Jacksonville will make every attempt to have T. Yeldon and Chris Ivory be integral parts of the offensive game plan for Sunday. Both teams rank among the most-penalized teams in the NFL this year. Whoever can avoid the major penalties i. The Raiders have not had much success in running the ball which means a large portion of the offense will need to come from Cooper and Crabtree. Cooper, in just his second year in the league, is having an outstanding season and is second in the AFC with yards, just 21 behind Cincinnati's A.
A year ago Cooper and Crabtree combined for receptions and eight yards shy of 2, receiving yards to go with 15 touchdowns.
Ramsey had a strong second half against the Bear's Alshon Jeffery last week and came up with a big fourth down stop late in the game when he knocked a pass away from Jeffery. Colvin was also solid last week in his first week of action after missing the team's first four games due to a league-imposed suspension. Oakland defensive ends Khalil Mack and Denico Autry. How well the two Jaguars tackles contain the two Raiders defensive ends will likely go a long way in determining the outcome of this game.
Mack is one of the elite players in the league and is the cornerstone of the defense. He's a standout run defender and one of the top edge players in the game. Autry missed the offseason following a wrist injury but has been dominant since getting back on the field. Beachum missed the team's third game this year with a concussion but has been solid when he's in the lineup in protecting Blake Bortles ' blind side. Parnell has done an adequate job as well though he's been flagged for several penalties.
Keeping the two Raider defenders away from Bortles and opening holes for running backs T. Yeldon and Chris Ivory could result in a Jaguars win. Raiders TE Clive Walford. He has 15 receptions for yards and appears to be recovered from a knee injury that cost him a game in Week 4. He caught a yard pass to set up a field goal late in the first half against Kansas City but had only one other reception. Getting Walford the ball four or more times could loosen up things for the Raiders trio of wide receivers, Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree and Seth Roberts.
G Vadal Alexander ankle. That streak is tied for the fourth longest by a Raider all-time, and is the longest since Rich Gannon had a game streak spanning the and seasons.
The only two players with a longer active such streak are Andrew Luck and Aaron Rodgers , who have each thrown a touchdown pass in 14 straight games in which they played.
Jags QB Blake Bortles put together a 4-play yard drive with the Jaguars down, , with less than five minutes left to play at Chicago last week, hitting Arrelious Benn on a yard score for a lead and, eventually, the win.
That was Bortles' sixth game winning drive of his career but only his second on the road. The term "home" is problematic for both the Raiders' franchise, which may move to Las Vegas, and on the field, where their most recent loss was against long-time AFC-West foe Kansas City last week.
But these Raiders are hot on the road and if they regain a running game it should help keep their generous defense on the sideline. They last met in the season, when the Chiefs won at the Superdome That was one of only two winning efforts Kansas City had that year. The last time the teams met at Arrowhead Stadium, the Saints left town with a victory in New Orleans is in Kansas City.
They've met just three times in the last 18 seasons. The Saints top the NFL with Yet, it wouldn't be surprising to see them try to establish the run early in Sunday's game with the Chiefs. The Chiefs rank 24th in the league against the run in allowing The Saints show an ability to run the ball at times, but usually don't have to because of the passing game. This could be the perfect opportunity to boost their On the other side of the ball, the Saints are still near the bottom of the NFL stats in most defensive categories.
They rank 31st in total yards allowed While they have endured injury after injury, they allowed only seven touchdown passes after giving up an NFL-record 45 a year ago. The Saints know the key against the Chiefs is tightening up the run defense a little. The Chiefs' Spencer Ware , who has filled in nicely for an injured Jamaal Charles with yards and a 5.
Yet, the Saints may also have to contend with Charles, who continues to make his way back from a knee injury. The Chiefs have been on a roller coaster that bottomed out in a point pounding by Pittsburgh nearly three weeks ago.
But last Sunday in Oakland, the Chiefs dominated a Raiders team that was previously To maintain success, the Chiefs must present a balanced offense, giving the running game the chance to kill the clock and peck out some big plays. Drew Brees and his talented group of wide receivers can be a potent bunch. The Chiefs need pressure on Brees and the best performance of the season from their secondary.
Saints defensive front seven led by defensive end Cameron Jordan and middle linebacker James Laurinaitis. Andy Reid fields a three-headed animal with his running game thanks to Charles, Ware and West. All three have different styles and all three are very productive when healthy, not only as runners, but receivers. The Chiefs are No. New Orleans is the 26th-ranked run defense, allowing an average of The Kansas City offense only works when it's balanced and the run game can protect quarterback Alex Smith and the passing game.
Jordan and Laurinaitis both have 24 tackles on the season. Peters has 13 interceptions in 21 regular-season games with five picks in five outings this season -- getting two each in Weeks 2 and 3. Peters also had an interception in the playoffs last year, giving him a total of 14 in just 23 games. So the Saints will have to be creative to try and pick their spots in challenging Peters.
Chiefs CB Marcus Peters. In five games, Peters has five interceptions to lead the league. In 23 regular and postseason games, the second-year corner has 14 interceptions, the best start ever in the NFL. He faces quite a challenge this Sunday going up against QB Drew Brees, one of the league's most accurate and experienced passers. Brees has thrown four picks in five games, but that doesn't slow down the Saints offense and willingness to throw the ball.
Whether he sees coverage on Brandin Cooks, Willie Snead or rookie Michael Thomas, Peters will get a chance for his sixth interception; it's important that the K.
New Orleans -- Out: Kansas City -- Questionable: Smith's only victory over the Saints was in the playoffs when he threw three touchdown passes, sending San Francisco to the NFC Championship Game. He lost starts with the 49ers against New Orleans in , and Overall in those four games, Smith threw six touchdowns and five interceptions.
Chiefs are shooting for ninth consecutive win at home. These Chiefs are getting into stride and are being overlooked in conversations about top teams in the NFL, probably because they are in the same division with Denver and Oakland.
But the Chiefs could be ready for another hot streak. Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins ET, Hard Rock Stadium. Buffalo won the last meeting, The Bills swept the two games last season, have won four of the last five and are against Miami in the last four years.
Bills coach Rex Ryan called his offense "boring" this week, but it wasn't a shot at the unit. Buffalo arrives in South Florida with the league's top-ranked ground game and a plus-eight turnover margin. That is a winning formula, even if the passing game ranks 31st and lacks any real pop minus injured wideout Sammie Watkins. QB Tyrod Taylor has thrown only two picks on the season and relies on moving the chains in short-yardage situations.
The Bills are more than happy to play a field position game, which puts the onus on Miami's run defense to flip the script. However, McCoy left Wednesday's practice with a tight hamstring, leaving his status uncertain and Mike Gillislee as the potential lead back Sunday. The Dolphins' passing game has yet to get untracked under new coach Adam Gase , but the much-maligned offensive line did clear the way for RB Jay Ajayi to rush for more than yards against Pittsburgh last week.
With QB Ryan Tannehill entering with seven interceptions against six touchdowns as he has been sacked 17 times despite none last week , Miami might have to beat Buffalo at its own game.
The Bills are allowing only Miami allowed "only" rushing yards to Pittsburgh, which is well below the average of The defensive front tends to struggle with maintaining gap integrity, which is exactly what McCoy is adept at exploiting.
Buffalo enters the game leading the league in rushing, paced by McCoy's yards. Gillislee is averaging 6. Buffalo has been more physical in the trenches in winning six of the past seven meetings. Miami rushed for a season-high yards last week while not allowing a sack of Tannehill with the front five showing more cohesion. DT Marcell Dareus hamstring still hasn't made his season debut, but would provide even more depth to an already strong unit if he's able to get in on a handful of snaps.
Dolphins S Michael Thomas. He'll be tasked with replacing Pro Bowl strong safety Reshad Jones rotator cuff , a job that probably can't be done by anyone else on the roster. Thomas will have help. T Seantrel Henderson back. Lorenzo Alexander , who is playing in Williams' old role in Buffalo, has a league-high 8.
Ajayi joined Reggie Bush , Ricky Williams twice in and Lamar Smith as the only Dolphins to rush for yards in a game. McCoy's status will be a significant factor, but the Bills have a capable group of backups and this is a difficult matchup for a Miami team that needs to prove last week's strong effort by Ajayi and the run defense wasn't the aberration the season stats would indicate.
Baltimore Ravens at New York Jets After a brutal run of injuries in , the Ravens again find themselves shorthanded as they attempt to stop a three-game losing streak against a desperate opponent making a quarterback change while riding a four-game skid. Quarterback Joe Flacco has a "right shoulder issue," according to coach Jim Harbaugh , who said it's "my belief he'll be out there. Either can challenge the Jets' beleaguered secondary in the vertical passing game.
But then there is the makeshift offensive line, the ankle injury that sidelined Steve Smith Sr. It's a complicated mix, even against the Jets, who do boast a strong line that leads the way for a run defense allowing only 3.
That's the same mark for the Ravens' top-ranked run defense allowing an average of just As the Jets make the switch behind center to Geno Smith , getting production out of the gate from RB Matt Forte figures to be critical. Then again, there's a Baltimore pass defense that could be without its most feared pass rusher in Terrell Suggs biceps and is dealing with a slew of injuries in the secondary.
The Jets are minus in turnover differential, and Geno Smith's ability to hold onto the quarterback job likely hinges on at least not building that number.
Ravens TE Dennis Pitta. Harris, who missed his first game since on Monday, was seen at practice Wednesday.
Even though his coverage skills have slipped, the Jets will need Harris to try and contain Pitta, the most reliable option in the Ravens' short passing game. Harris is a better option than Henderson, whose missed open-field tackle on Cardinals RB David Johnson 's yard touchdown run Monday was the lowest light of a dim night for the Jets.
Jets WR Brandon Marshall. Marshall has 27 catches for yards and two touchdowns despite uneven quarterback play and little in the way of other proven playmakers in the passing game. Baltimore's secondary is also dealing with injuries to Tavon Young undisclosed , Jerraud Powers groin and Shareece Wright hamstring. Their status is also uncertain. Baltimore could move safety Lardarius Webb back to his original position at corner for experience.
Smith is expected to replace Terrell Suggs, who suffered a torn biceps against the Giants last Sunday. The year-old Suggs is still playing at a high level five sacks , so his absence qualifies as a break for the Jets, who need to keep a clean pocket for the turnover-prone Smith. New York Jets -- Out: The Ravens have forced 11 turnovers through six games after forcing a single-season franchise low 14 all of last season.
Flacco has been sacked 11 times over the past three games. The Ravens have dropped three consecutive games and are dealing with key injuries on both sides of the ball. The Jets have dropped four straight and are making a desperate quarterback change.
Coin flip to the Jets, who get a bit of a spark from the change under center while the Ravens try to cope with their latest slew of injuries. Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles ET, Lincoln Financial Field. Vikings lead series, The Vikings have won two straight under strange circumstances.
In , as the Leslie Frazier regime was going down in flames, the Vikings upset a playoff-bound Eagles team at the Metrodome. A week later, the Vikings were dominated at Cincinnati by a defensive coordinator named Mike Zimmer.
In , the Vikings traveled to Philadelphia for a Sunday game that wasn't played until Tuesday night because of the threat of a snow storm that never grew to the strength that was expected. That game helped Leslie Frazier eliminate the interim tag he held after stepping in for the fired Brad Childress earlier in the season. The Vikings were blitz-heavy that night, catching the playoff-bound Eagles off-guard in a upset.
The teams have met three times in the playoffs. The Eagles have won all three, including two divisional meetings and a wild-card matchup in which then-Eagles coach Andy Reid brought his No. Teammates turned opposition by the Sept. The Vikings are No. His mobility was not a major factor against the Redskins, who hemmed Wentz in the pocket with relentless pressure and exposed RT Halapoulivaati Vaitai, who allowed two sacks and numerous pressures. Wentz limits mistakes, but Bradford has made none.
The Vikings are the only offense in the NFL without a turnover. The Vikings have 19 sacks and lead the NFL with a plus turnover differential. The Vikings apply heat and don't turn it off. Getting him help -- using tight ends to set the edge protection and utilizing the ground game -- is a must for the Eagles to pull the upset.
Minnesota has 10 players on injured reserve but the Vikings' conservative approach on offense suits the game plan of letting a talented defense win games. Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon has good burst when the line creates a seam but too often he's meeting first contact behind the line of scrimmage, and averages just 3. The Eagles are struggling to get good push at the line of scrimmage and yield 4.
Eagles PR Darren Sproles. No, they won't face each other. But they could put on quite the show if their opponent's coverage units aren't attentive, aggressive and careful. Sherels has a league-high two return touchdowns and is third in the league with a He's a big reason the Vikings awoke from their slumber to win at Carolina. He'll face a year veteran punter in Donnie Jones.
Together with his coverage guys, Jones ranks 24th in net punting average at They've also given up a punt return for a touchdown.
They'll need to do better against Sherels. Meanwhile, the Vikings get Sproles, who is 10th in the league in punt return average The Vikings counter with Jeff Locke, who is having his best season. He already has 13 punts downed inside the yard line. His punts have better hang time, which has allowed the coverage unit to limit opponents to a 7. Vikings FS Harrison Smith. Wentz cruised through a start without an interception. Then he threw a damaging one near the end of the loss to Detroit.
Another loss to Washington followed, but Wentz still has seven touchdown passes to only one interception. Smith will play a vital role in coach Mike Zimmer's attempt to confuse the rookie quarterback. If the Vikings can stop the run, Zimmer's creative fronts and third-down packages increase tremendously in difficulty to decipher. Smith's instincts, savvy and speed enable him to show blitz off the edge and drop deep, or vice versa. Six Vikings share the team's seven interceptions. Smith doesn't have one, although he flat-out dropped a pick-six against the Texans.
And Wentz will have plenty to worry about, starting with the Vikings' front-seven defenders rushing him. But he better make sure he knows where Smith is at all times. Otherwise, Smith has a knack for slipping into perfect position for pick-sixes. Vikings QB Sam Bradford. Perhaps too obvious, but no one should or will look past Bradford in this game. Traded by the Eagles to the Vikings eight days before the season started, Bradford has played nearly perfect.
He sat behind Shaun Hill for a week and then posted the first four-game winning streak of his career. He leads the NFL in completion percentage Going back to last season with the Eagles, Bradford has thrown straight passes without an interception. The Eagles are with rookie first-round draft pick Carson Wentz. And they get the Vikings' first-round pick next year and a conditional fourth-rounder in But Bradford can make the Eagles regret the trade for at least one day if he goes back into Philly and plays like he has to this point in Minnesota.
WR Jarius Wright ankle. Dating to last season, the Vikings have a streak of nine games without allowing more than 18 points. Vikings S Anthony Sendejo fumble lost has the only Minnesota turnover this season. Wentz has one interception in pass attempts. Bradford has zero in passes. Unless the Eagles commit to lighting a fire with the running game to ease the strain on rookie QB Carson Wentz, Minnesota gets to with a feisty defense healthy and rested after last week's bye. Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans Colts lead series, Indy has won nine in a row vs.
Tennessee and 14 of the past The Colts are vs. Tennessee in home games and on the road. Indianapolis has posted wins in four of its last five games at Nissan Stadium, including last year's decision. Indianapolis has been consistently inconsistent through the first six games of the year, either not being able to start fast and keep the pressure on teams or not being able to close out contests when getting off to double-digit leads. Offensively, the Colts have been shooting themselves in the foot with ill-timed penalties and poor decision making.
Indianapolis' running game has shown some improvement but the inability to keep the chains moving in crucial situations continues to hamper the offensive production. As for the defense, the Colts are still searching for a consistent pass rush. Opposing quarterbacks are getting too much time in the pocket to look downfield and find secondary receivers. Tackling has also been a recurring issue, especially late in games. Indianapolis has allowed too many yards after the catch. Last week, the Titans turned to the passing game when the Browns keyed on stopping the run.
This week, they hope to get back to running the football with DeMarco Murray against a Colts defense that can be porous. On defense, Tennessee must get pressure on Andrew Luck and not allow T. Hilton to beat them with big plays down the field. Look for the Titans to try to confuse Luck as much as possible with exotic blitzes and movement, especially on third down.
Luck has been sacked 23 times and hit on 46 other occasions through the first six games. Despite the constant pressure, he still has managed to complete of passes for 1, yards and 11 touchdowns while just throwing four interceptions.
In seven career games against the Titans, Luck has connected on passes for 1, yards with 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions. He has been sacked 16 times by the Tennessee defense. Orakpo leads the Titans with seven sacks this year.
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