Five Trade Destinations that Make Sense for N’Keal Harry

Heading into his third year in the NFL, N’Keal Harry’s agent has requested that the New England Patriots find him a new home. Los Angeles-based lawyer and NFL Agent Jamal Tooson gave the following statement about the former first-round pick’s trade request, first reported by NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo:

For the record, I came up covering N’Keal Harry, first as a high school standout, and then later as a star receiver at Arizona State University. While Patriots fans are understandably upset at the idea that anyone would ask to be moved from their storied franchise, the trade request actually makes sense. Bill Belichick’s post-Tom Brady offense ranked tied for last in TD passes, 31st in completions, 30th in passing yards, and 27th in points per game. They return the same offensive coordinator in Josh McDaniels, and WR coach in Mick Lombardi, and in all likelihood, Cam Newton will take the majority of the snaps under center this year as 2021 first round draft pick Mac Jones develops.

In his first two years in New England, N’Keal Harry has battled injuries, and struggled to find a consistent role in the Patriots offense when he’s on the field. As his agent alluded to in his public comments about the trade request, Harry desires to be used as a downfield threat. To many Patriots fans, they see a receiver that struggles to create separation off the line of scrimmage, and so continuing to try and make use of him on shorter routes seems to be counterintuitive.

While Pats fans might be upset at Harry’s early production, and at the idea that he’s request a trade heading into his third season, if they don’t believe he’s going to ultimately fulfil their expectations, why wouldn’t they be behind the idea of attempting to get some compensation in return for finding a more fitting offense?

On N’Keal Harry’s end, it makes sense to attempt to position himself as a necessary offensive weapon on a team with a thriving (or at the very least, average) offense. It’s going to be increasingly difficult for N’Keal Harry to earn a second contract on a team whose wideouts from the 2020 season ranked 28th in total targets, and one of only three teams in the NFL without a single wide receiver on the roster to average over six targets per game (Eagles, Raiders).

Whether there’s a market for N’Keal Harry isn’t in question, what remains to be seen is just how motivated Bill Belichick is to finding a new home for Harry whilst seeking fair compensation in return. Assuming the Patriots do move N’Keal Harry, here are five trade destinations that make the most sense:

1. The Kansas City Chiefs

Any wideout would jump at the chance to play alongside Patrick Mahomes, as well as in an Andy Reid offense. What makes this a potentially great fit is that the Chiefs actually have a need for a bigger-bodied receiver after losing Sammy Watkins in free agency to the Baltimore Ravens. They have Marcus Kemp, Jody Fortson and Gehrig Dieter as developmental guys, so you know they have a desire to play a bigger wideout alongside speedy-but-diminutive threats Mecole Hardman and Tyreek Hill. N’Keal Harry could make an already unstoppable offense even more dangerous, but as Charles Goodman of Chiefs Wire pointed out, the $1.4 million and $3.2 million cap hits over the next two years might be a tough pill to swallow unless they believe Harry is going to pan out.

2. The Los Angeles Chargers

Justin Herbert likes big receivers, and isn’t afraid to take risks downfield. While adding N’keal Harry would likely be more of a depth play in 2021, as Mike Williams and Keenan Allen are firmly entrenched as the top two receivers on the Chargers roster, one has to wonder if the Chargers plan on breaking the bank to keep Williams and Allen paired together beyond 2021. The dynamic duo is scheduled to make a combined $31 millions this season, and with Williams on the cusp on unrestricted free agency, and Allen due another $66 million in 2022-2024. Harry could give the Chargers the option of spending their money elsewhere in the 2022 offseason, while giving him some of the more mild weather that he thrived in as a collegiate standout.

3. The Jacksonville Jaguars

Urban Meyer likes big athletes with five-star pedigrees, and N’Keal Harry certainly has that going for him. The Jaguars are putting their franchise in the hands of a rookie QB in Trevor Lawrence, and the best thing they can do for him is surround him with as much talent as possible right out of the gate. The Jaguars have the resources and the cap room to make this happen without even breaking a sweat, and the capital with the fans to mark any risk that doesn’t pan out in the early going as a well intentioned experiment (for reference, see Tim Tebow).

4. The Green Bay Packers

Could one man’s trade request be the cure for another? Aaron Rodgers’ much-chronicled battle with the Green Bay front office has dragged on far longer than any Packers fan is comfortable with, but it looks like they’re ready to hang on to Rodgers no matter how hard the future hall of famer makes the lives of every single suit in that organization. Certainly adding one former first round pick at wide receiver isn’t going to cure all of the internal ills they have going on over there, but even if adding N’Keal Harry doesn’t tempt Aaron Rodgers to squash his many beefs and attempt to put together another MVP season in 2021, Jordan Love is going to need more weapons on the outside anyway.

5. The Denver Broncos

You might be looking at the Denver Broncos being included on this list and saying to yourself “why would N’Keal Harry want to go to a team that’s equally unsettled at the quarterback position?” Well, fellow class of 2016 5-star wideout Jerry Jeudy is a Denver Bronco, and one thing the Denver Broncos made sure to do was give him tons of opportunities to succeed. Jeudy was second in targets among rookies in 2020 despite being eighth in receptions. Through their growing pains, the Broncos at least made sure to take plenty of shots. The other thing I find appealing about this Broncos offense is the way Vic Fangio makes use of 6-4, 212 WR Tim Patrick. After two forgettable years in Denver, Patrick had 51 receptions and 6 touchdowns in 2021. That’s exactly the type of development and career rehabilitation N’Keal Harry needs.

Andy Reid needs a Super Bowl Victory to Cement His HOF Legacy

Is this the season Andy Reid changes his legacy?

At 61 years old, with 21 years of head coaching experience, his teams experienced incredible regular season success. Of 21 season with the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs, he only missed the playoffs six times. Most recently, with Kansas City, their regular-season records include:

  • 11-5
  • 9-7
  • 11-6
  • 12-4
  • 10-6
  • 12-4
  • 12-4

His teams won 10 division titles and they had an overall 61.8-percent winning percentage. But, even with all of the wins, his teams have still fallen short of the big game. Andy Reid is largely looked at one of the greatest coaches to never win a Super Bowl. He’s been called out for poor clock-management, letting his foot off the gas and losing in critical games. His 12-14 playoff record hangs over any of his feats. And he’s ridiculed for it every, single season.

But, with a Super Bowl victory, he can change all of that and vault himself into a new category of NFL coaches.

Andy Reid’s coaching tree is already better than Bill Belichick’s

Everyone knows Bill Belichick’s success with the New England Patriots is otherworldly. However, his coaching tree produced very few winners. In a recent article by Matt Lombardo of NJ Advance Media, he compared in detail the differences between Andy Reid and Belichick’s legacy of head coaches. In comparison, Reid’s successors are far better in comparison:

Belichick’s Coaching Tree

  • Combined Record: 281-330-1
  • Playoff Appearances: 8
  • Super Bowl Titles: 0

Reid’s Coaching Tree

  • Combined Record: 350-307-1
  • Playoff Appearances: 19
  • Super Bowl Titles: 2

Even without a Super Bowl title himself, Andy Reid’s success lives through his coaching tree. Although, if Reid, Patrick Mahomes, and the Kansas City Chiefs win this year’s Super Bowl, his legacy will boom.

Andy Reid, Offensive Genius

With respect to Philadelphia and Kansas City’s scouting, drafting and signing, Andy Reid’s coached so many offensive powerhouses. It takes only a second to think of incredible playmakers from the Eagles and Chiefs. Donovan McNabb, Brian Westbrook, LeSean McCoy, Terrell Owens, and DeSean Jackson highlight his years in Philadelphia. While Patrick Mahomes, Jamaal Charles, Tyreek Hill, and Travis Kelce are huge in Kansas City.

But, even without the superstars, he’s gotten the most out of every running back and receiver on his teams. He even made Alex Smith look like an NFL MVP. Regardless of the players available, Reid’s teams put up points. 13 of his 21 teams ranked in the top-10 of offensive points per game in their respective seasons. Additionally, nine of them ranked in the top-six in scoring offense.

Now, with Patrick Mahomes at the helm with Travis Kelce, Tryreek Hill, Damien Williams, Mecole Hardman, and Sammy Watkins to utilize, Reid’s offense is at full force. This offensive power was on display in their 51-31 win against the Houston Texans. With a Super Bowl victory, Andy Reid’s genius will be immortalized.

Reid is too good to not have a ring

In his two decades of experience, Andy Reid amassed 207 wins, 10 division titles, and one Super Bowl appearance. In terms of head coaching success, Reid ranks seventh all-time in regular-season wins. Don Shula, George Hala, Bill Belichick, Tom Landry, Curly Lambeau, Paul Brown and Marty Schottenheimer each join him in the 200-plus win club.

Despite his exceptional company, he is the only one of them without an NFL title. This Super Bowl victory would vault him into the discussion of a future Hall of Fame coach.

Andy Reid has the wins. He’s known as an offensive genius. Any layman can name countless elite players from his teams. All he needs is two more wins to get the respect he deserves.

Best Pac-12 NFL Players: Week 7 Offensive Standouts

Best Pac-12 NFL Players: Week 7

Huge Performances from Pac-12 NFL Players in Week 7

Marvin jones California Golden bears Best Pac-12 NFL Players: Week 7
Marvin Jones has come a long way since Cal

While the Oregon-Washington game was the most exciting game of the weekend, our Pac-12 alumni showed up in Week 7 of the NFL. The best Pac-12 NFL players were clearly Aaron Rodgers and Marvin Jones. They unleashed their abilities in full strength. No one could stop them and we couldn’t get enough. Who else joined them this week?

Best Quarterback Performances

Aaron Rodgers – Cal – Green Bay Packers

Against the Oakland Raiders, Aaron Rodgers went full God-mode. He dismantled them in every way possible for a quarterback. Rodgers finished with this stat line:

  • 25 of 31 (80.65-percent completion percentage)
  • 429 Passing Yards
  • 5 Passing Touchdowns
  • 1 Rushing Touchdown

With a game like that, it’s no wonder that Rodgers notched his first perfect-Passer Rating of the season. It was a vintage performance from the Cal product and it’s why he is one of the best Pac-12 NFL players of all time.

Matt Moore – Oregon State – Kansas City Chiefs

Wow. Talk about composure and stepping up. Somehow, even though Matt Moore hasn’t played since 2017, he sealed the win for the Kansas City Chiefs. With the loss of Patrick Mahomes to a dislocated knee, fans were panicking. But, calm and collected, Moore displayed exactly what teams need from a backup quarterback. He threw for a modest 117 yards, no interceptions and dropped a dime to Tyreek Hill for a touchdown.

Without Moore on the team, they’d be tempted to trade for a potential quarterback bridge until Mahomes gets healthy. But, like New Orleans and Teddy Bridgewater, the Chiefs have it covered.

Best Wide Receiver Performances

Marvin Jones – Cal – Detroit Lions

Even though he was up against the Minnesota Vikings defense, Marvin Jones erupted for four touchdowns. Four! It’s rare for an NFL receiver to get three touchdowns in a game, let alone four.

He was unstoppable. Uncoverable. On 13 targets, he caught 10 for 93 yards and 4 scores. To the delight of fans’ eyes, Jones had himself a game.

Best Tight End Performance

Rhett Ellison – USC – New York Giants

Now, this isn’t one of those Pac-12 NFL tight end games for the record books. But, Rhett Ellison had one of his better performances. He caught both targets for 33 yards and a touchdown. In a tight loss to the Arizona Cardinals, those were needed receptions.

Especially considering how inconsistent and poor Daniel Jones was playing. Hopefully, Ellison can find the end zone again this season. But, at least he joined the ranks of other Pac-12 NFL greats this week.

Disagree with our Pac-12 NFL List?

If you disagree with this list or want to add anyone else in, comment or Tweet at us.

Rehabilitation and Redemption Part 1: Kareem Hunt’s NFL Second Chance

Kareem Hunt signed by the Cleveland Browns

Kareem Hunt has officially been signed by the Cleveland Browns. The former Kansas City Chiefs Running back was released in December amidst a domestic abuse scandal. He is currently on the NFL exempt lists and will not be eligible to play until the NFL completes its investigation and makes a decision on his punishment. As with many scandals in sports, it is a bigger deal when there is video evidence vs accusations. In this case, there is a video of the running back shoving and kicking a woman in a Cleveland hotel. It is clear that Kareem Hunt was in the wrong, and he even stated that he was. But does he deserve a second chance? Should Cleveland be the one to give him that chance? The answer is a resounding yes.

The NFL has historically turned a blind eye to domestic abuse until the league was embarrassed by the punishments handed down in the Ray Rice and Josh Brown cases. The league then instituted a new Domestic Violence Policy. The new policies state that players involved in sexual assault or domestic violence incidents will receive a six-game suspension for a first offense and atheoretical lifetime ban from the NFL for a second offense. Kareem Hunt missed the final five regular-season games of 2018 and will likely be suspended for the first six games of 2019 in accordance with the policy. He will have to attend counseling.

NFL Players Are Not Bad Guys

NFL players are arrested at a far lower rate than the general public. So why does the twitter mob often demand players never work again? Doctors, lawyers, judges, and people law enforcement all have an element of morality attached to their job description. However, when they run afoul of the law they are given second chances. The NFL is full of is flawed human beings, just like the rest of society. Some of them have made mistakes or had accusations of impropriety against them if caught on tape may have ended their careers. Ray Lewis, Michael Vick, Ben Roethlisberger, Adrian Peterson, Brett Favre, and even Peyton Manning have had scandals either in college or the NFL.

But, if a player is surrounded by public controversy, the path to redemption for these players is complicated. In this digital age, this has become much more apparent. Tweets are viewed and screenshot before they can be deleted. Every phone has a quality camera and people demand transparency. Compounding this are angry, public outcries by the social media mob. People rightfully want our society to be better. There have been large-scale, public activism in recent years such as the #MeToo, #BlackLivesMatter, and #MAGA movements strongly fueled by the power of social media. When a player like Kareem Hunt is caught on video making a critical mistake, he is screwed. Hunt has to now choose to do one of the following: Be like Richie Incognito or Be like Tyreek Hill.

Which Road Will Kareem Hunt Take

The case of Richie Incognito is a fascinating one. He played in the NFL as an offensive guard for 11 seasons, started 151 games, and made the Pro-Bowl four times. Incognito was talented. But he also caused a lot of trouble. A lot. After making his first Pro-Bowl in 2012 and winning the 2012 Good Guy Award, Incognito was a well-respected veteran. That all changed quickly. In 2013, when Incognito was asked to “toughen up” teammate Jonathan Martin, he took to bullying and threatening Martin. When Martin missed voluntary practices, Incognito threatened him and his family, while also using racial slurs we should never repeat or tolerate. After listening to the recording, the Dolphins suspended Incognito for three months. Then following review of the Martin exchanges and additional racial slurs used towards an assistant trainer, the Dolphins suspended Incognito for the entire 2014 season.

Missing an entire season due to threats and using the N-word doesn’t sound like a scenario that would play out well. But it almost did. Remember that Incognito was talented and the league needed quality offensive lineman. He was signed by the Bills and made the Pro Bowl with them for three consecutive seasons from 2015-2017. In a 2016 interview with Colin Cowherd, he said: “You learn from it, you move on”. However, Incognito did not learn as much as he needed to. In 2018, he threw a tennis ball and a dumbbell at another gym patron in a Life Time Fitness. He was later arrested for disorderly conduct and threatening funeral home employees when he was making arrangements for his father’s funeral. The police found two Glocks, three rifles, and a suppressor in his truck. Incognito managed to extend his career a few more years due to quality play and talent, but lacked the personal growth and changed needed for sustained success.

Change is Possible

In contrast to Incognito is Tyreek Hill. In 2014, Hill was dismissed from Oklahoma State because of graphic, domestic abuse involving his then-pregnant girlfriend. The police report states that “… the two got into an argument and he threw her around like a ragdoll, punched her in the face, sat on her and repeatedly punched her in the stomach, and choked her.” He was sentenced to three years of probation, anger management, a year-long batterers program and required to undergo a domestic-abuse evaluation. But while his fault was large, he took the necessary steps towards rehabilitation.

Hill completed his three years of probation, his anger management, and batterers programs, and also added community service into his life. His case was expunged. He is now engaged to Crystal Espinal, the same woman he abused, and they have a three-year-old son. Hill also earned an NFL Players Association’s Community MVP weekly award in 2018. Would Hill have been afforded this ability to change if his abuse was caught on camera? Unlikely. Nevertheless, it shouldn’t matter whether a crime is caught on video or not. Each player should be afforded a second chance to change and be redeemed.

This path of redemption for Kareem Hunt can be found in Cleveland. The team’s general manager, John Dorsey, was the general manager for the Kansas City Chiefs when they drafted Tyreek Hill amidst his controversy. He also drafted Antonio Callaway last season. Dorsey is willing to take risks on players if they can change and take steps towards growth. Dorsey also knows Kareem Hunt. He drafted him before departing from Kansas City to Cleveland. He clearly believes in Hunt.

Trust in Cleveland Browns GM John Dorsey

“My relationship and interaction with Kareem since 2016 in college was an important part of this decision-making process but we then did extensive due diligence with many individuals, including clinical professionals, to have a better understanding of the person he is today and whether it was prudent to sign him,’’ Dorsey said in a release. “There were two important factors: one is that Kareem took full responsibility for his egregious actions and showed true remorse and secondly, just as importantly, he is undergoing and is committed to necessary professional treatment and a plan that has been clearly laid out.”

Hunt has the general manager backing him and now all he has to do is gain the trust of the public. Luckily for Hunt, he is a Cleveland native. Hunt was born and played football through high school in Willoughby, Ohio before playing for the University of Toledo (also in Ohio). By playing near his hometown, he will have the support of his friends and family. Hunt also appears to be following in Tyreek Hill’s path. In an ESPN interview, Hunt said, “[The Chiefs] pretty much said we love you, everybody cares about you, and just we have to let you go. It was a tough conversation,” He added, “And the Chiefs did what was right. I made a poor decision and I’m willing to take full responsibility.” If he, unlike Incognito, is able to learn from his actions and move forward, he has the chance to find success.

Last, although it’s unfortunate that it comes down to it, Hunt is a very good player. When athletes perform well, they are generally accepted back into fandom quicker. Their controversies can dissolve more and more with each win. According to PFF, Hunt was the 9th-best running back in 2018 and the 3rd-best running back in 2017. He led the league in rushing and forced missed tackles in 2017. Playing for an up and coming offense in the Browns, the dual-threat Hunt can be utilized and find success.

Don’t Move the Goal Posts

What Kareem Hunt did is inexcusable and should never happen. But it is also inexcusable to deny someone the chance to move forward. How long do we have to put up with this outdated idea that someone’s mistakes need to follow them for life? Growth and redemption should be afforded to all. With each mistake, we have the chance to grow, learn, and impact others in a positive way. Each of us has the ability to own up to our own mistakes. Apologize, and take the steps necessary to change for the better. So we should accept and encourage others to do the same, regardless of if they were caught on video or not.

Rehabilitation and Redemption Part 2: Virginia Politicians, Megyn Kelly, Blackface

Former Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes Looks Like the MVP with Chiefs

QB Patrick Mahomes Chiefs

Patrick Mahomes looks like an NFL MVP in his first season as a starter with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Since his time as a quarterback with the Texas Tech Red Raiders, Patrick Mahomes has been demonstrating that he has a cannon for an arm that’s worthy of top recognition. Unfortunately, the Tech defense couldn’t find a rhythm in his time there. And while the Kansas City Chiefs’ defense has its own issues, Mahomes has consistently proven why the “system” conversation experts insist on having every season needs to be replaced with praise for inventiveness, grit, and resourcefulness.

With Mahomes being Texas Tech’s top overall pick in program history, and Baker Mayfield taking the first-round spot last year, it’s started another debate on how “system quarterbacks” are fitting in the League. While teams throughout the league from the Rams to the Chiefs are embracing a more avant-garde approach to schematics, perhaps Mahomes’ performance throughout the 2018 season should provide a glimpse into what offensive coordinators should be looking for while updating their playbooks and personnel.

For Patrick Mahomes, however, record after record broken this season, he not only padded his statistics en route to the League MVP title, he also made his supporting cast like tight end Travis Kelce (1,336) appear goliath on the field. With production increases all around, it’s impossible to overlook Mahomes as the leading candidate for the prestigious award.

Mahomes has accounted for 5, 097 passing yards and leads the league with 50 touchdowns. His 8.8 yards-per-pass almost guaranteed a first down on every snap, and while he trails Ben Roethlisberger for No. 1. in the AFC in passing, Mahomes’ YPP averages 1.4 yards more than Roethlisberger’s.

Many of the experts believe the MVP race is between Mahomes and New Orleans Saints’ quarterback Drew Brees. Brees ranks 13th in the NFL in total passing, at 3,992 yards, 32 touchdowns, and a game average of 266.1 yards. If we’re comparing stats solely, league-wide, Mahomes is still the second-best passer in the league.

Mahomes has made throws into windows so tight the reception probability was exceptionally narrow, but if you watched him at Texas Tech, those throws were the standard, making Mahomes one of the most prolific quarterbacks in program history. Now, those improbable throws are turning Mahomes into a one-man highlight reel, and making pundits question every negative thing they’ve said about “system quarterbacks.” Instead, it’s made people begin to understand that every offense that a quarterback develops in is its own “system,” and that it’s become a buzzword to diminish innovation.

Patrick Mahomes throws off balance, he stares down the soul of defenders while connecting with his receivers. He throws oddly angled sidearm passes and evades tackles as only a Big 12 quarterback could. What’s more, Mahomes is only 23 and only has a full season under his belt. He has only shown us the beginning of what he’s capable of, and as the Kansas City Chiefs continue to build the team around him and his progression, the NFL could be witnessing the next Tom Brady-type legend emerge.

Mahomes certainly has had a season for the record books, but his play has elevated him into the levels of Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. He was named on Friday to the 2018 NFL All-Pro team, along with Kelce and wide receiver Tyreek Hill, and even broke fantasy football history by posting the greatest fantasy season by a quarterback, with 417 total points.

If the NFL MVP award is truly given to the player who was most valuable to the League, then Patrick Mahomes is it, and it’s not even close. He’s not a prototypical player, and when he took over when Alex Smith was traded last season, it was viewed as the biggest gamble in Andy Reid’s head coaching career. That gamble has paid off, and now Mahomes is consistently outplaying league veterans and rewriting the rules.

T. J. Houshmandzadeh made a case for Mahomes against Drew Brees saying that the NFL MVP shouldn’t be a “lifetime achievement award because it’s a disservice to Patrick Mahomes,” and even dovetails to the contributions Brees has had at defense compared to Mahomes, who has to turn the burners on to compensate where the Chiefs’ defense has lacked this season.

The NFL MVP Award will be selected on February 2, and it’s clear that it’s already becoming one of the most polarizing pre-Super Bowl debates, which could dominate post-season discussions. When Mahomes hit 5,000 yards, he joined an elite group of professional quarterbacks and became the first player ever to throw for 5,000 yards in a season in college and in NFL. To say his talent and electric performances aren’t deserving of the League’s most prestigious award is disrespectful to the sport.

Regardless of the outcome, it’s clear with players like Baker Mayfield and Mahomes and coaches like Reid and Sean McVay, the “system” is here to stay.

Five Up Five Down The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL teams week 13

NFL Week 13 Rankings

Five Up Five Down The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL teams week 13 is where we rank the five best and five worst teams in the NFL. Anybody can list the best teams. It takes real skill to sort through the mess that is the bottom of the league. Week 13 has already kicked off with the Cowboys getting a huge win over the Saints! What did we learn from Week 12? We missed the Chiefs and Rams in action, Vikings gots a must win over the Packers, Colts are good but do we believe in them just yet and the Texans keep winning! Do you like that? Does your team sadly qualify for worst teams for Week 13?

Leave a comment, share, and email us: ImMad@UnafraidShow.com.

5 UP: The 5 Best NFL Teams Week 13 

1. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (10-2) Last Week: 1st

The Saints lost a close one to the Cowboys 13-10 in Dallas. Drew Brees had a bad game, and the offense was put to sleep by an inspired Cowboys defense.  I am going to leave New Orleans in the first position for two reasons.  One, they beat the Rams and two the defense continues to get better every week.  This is what puts them ahead of the Rams and Chiefs no matter if they have two loses. I have said this all along of New Orleans starts playing defense like they did last year then the rest of the league is in trouble.  New Orleans gets a nice bounce-back team in the Bucs next week in Tampa. Call me out all you want the Saints are a better football team then the Chiefs and Rams because the defense is starting to put it together.

2. LOS ANGELES RAMS (10-1) Last Week: 2nd

The high powered Rams are back in action after enjoying a week off. The Rams were fun to watch in a 54-51 win over the Chiefs, but that defense is still a concern. Good news for the Rams they will get veteran CB Aquib Talib back which should help the porous secondary out immensely.  Jared Goff (3,547 yards 26 TD’s) and Todd Gurley (1,043 Yards 13 TDs) are the kingpins of what has become an unstoppable machine. The Rams will face the struggling Detroit Lions (4-7) in the Motor City and lead the all-time history between the two teams, 43-41-1. LA is a strong 10 point favorite versus the Detroit but this could be one of those trap games we shall see.

3. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (9-2) Last Week: 3rd

The Chiefs created history!  First team to lose a game scoring over 50 points. It was a fun game to watch but also a reminder that the defense still is swiss cheese. Patrick Mahomes II had six touchdown passes and over 400 yards passing, but it was those three costly interceptions that cost them the most. He will learn from it and is on his way to being the league’s MVP.  The Chiefs barely lost to the Patriots and Rams on the road, which makes them a trendy choice to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. It’s sort of sad that they won’t be playing this Sunday enjoying the Bye Week. This week Kansas City will be in Oakland (2-9) and should exploit the Raiders horrible defense.  The Chiefs are 14.5 point favorites and have an all-time advantage between the two AFC West rivals, 63-53-2.

4. CHICAGO BEARS (8-3) Last Week: 4th

Chase Daniels will get his 2nd straight start this week as the Bears are in New York to battle the mystery that is the Giants (3-8).   This team has yet to be behind at halftime all year. The defense ranked 4th overall is superior creating points on turnovers which they would like to do for the 3rd straight week. Khalil Mack should get serious consideration for defensive player of the year.  Jordan Howard (536 yards rushing) could have his first big week against a Giants team struggling to stop the run. Bears are 3.5 favorites to get another road win over the New York Giants. Chicago has a huge advantage between the two teams in head to head, 33-23-2.

5. HOUSTON TEXANS (8-3) Last Week: Unranked

Eight straight wins!   Remember when we all had Bill O’Brien on the firing block?  Now the Texans have taken advantage of a weak schedule, but the play of Deshaun Watson (2,807 Yards 20 TD’s 101.8 QB Rating) has people excited and worthy of this team in the #5 spot.   Lamar Miller has put up two straight stellar weekends which had added to the weapons the Texans have offensively.  The defense is getting better now ranked #7 overall in the league.  This could be a very dangerous team with all the high priced talent moving in the right direction. The Texans will look to make it nine straight as the Cleveland Browns  (4-6-1) come to H-town.  Texans lead the all-time series (6-3) and are 5.5 point favorites to beat Baker Mayfield and the Browns (Last played last year a 33-17 win by the Texans with Watson throwing 3 TD passes).

Closing in on the top 5 this week:

New England Patriots (8-3), LA Chargers (8-3), Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3-1)

5 DOWN: The 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 13 

28. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (3-8) Last Week: Unranked

What a disaster!  This was my Super Bowl pick in the AFC and the season has gone straight in the garbage can with seven straight loses.  Blake Bortles has proven he is not a franchise QB and why the team did not go out and get an Eli Manning or someone at the trading deadline is inexcusable.  Hey Jalen Ramsey what are you saying right now?  This is not the defenses fault, ranked 5th overall but the offense has been brutal since the loss of   OT Cam Robinson (Torn ACL) and losing Marqise Lee before the season really has shown.  The Jags will look to avoid an 8th straight loss in a row vs. the red-hot Colts (6-5) at home with Cody Kessler as the starter.  Vegas likes the Colts on the road as 4 point favorites. Indy will be after the clean sweep this year after winning the first affair 29-26 and have a 23-12 lead in the series between the two AFC South teams.

29. N.Y. JETS (3-8) Last Week: Unranked

The season started with promise, and now we can hear the clock ticking on Todd Bowles and his coaching life. Sam Darnold looks like he will play against the Tennessee Titans this Sunday but why put him in harm’s way. He has shown enough now the franchise needs to build around him with a new Head Coach. Not everything has been horrible for gang green, as the play of Jamal Adams has stood out.  The Jets will be in Tennessee this Sunday to battle the Titans (5-6).  Currently, Vegas has the Titans as eight-point favorites and Tennessee leads the all-time series 24-19-1.

30 SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (2-9) Last Week: 30th

Its been a lost season for San Francisco.  Coach Shanahan has done an excellent job of keeping this team fighting. Unfortunately for the 49ers, they play in Seattle this week a place of horrors for them 4-13 at Century Link Field. The fun part of the week has been Richard Sherman taking shots at Russell Wilson all week.  This game could get ugly in a must win for Seattle (6-5). The Seahawks are 10 point favorites and are 24-15 all-time versus  San Francisco which includes a nine-game winning streak between the NFC West combatants.  The 49ers last beat Seattle in 2013 (19-17) and have won only once in the last 12 match-ups (1-11).  The best thing for the 49ers is to keep losing and get the first pick in the NFL Draft.

31 OAKLAND RAIDERS (2-9) Last Week: 31st

One of the worst seasons in Oakland Raiders history continues to roll on in its shambolic state. All the excitement of Jon Gruden being back working with Derek Carr.  Before the season kicked off, Khalil Mack was moved and from that moment on, the year spiraled out control.   They lost to a rookie QB Lamar Jackson in an uninspired effort. This week the Raiders woeful 25th ranked defense will have to figure out how to stop the 3rd ranked offense and leading MVP Candidate Patrick Mahomes.  I am guessing a brutal double-digit loss and the Chiefs could score 50 points on the Silver Black sieve-like defense.

32. ARIZONA CARDINALS (2-9) Last Week: 32nd

They got schooled by the Chargers, and the worst offense in the NFL has no hope of getting better this year.  Josh Rosen will continue to take his lumps, and this week it will be in Green Bay (4-6-1) to take on the Packers.  One has to wonder what the Cardinals are going to do this off-season with the front office and coaching staff.  Packers lead the all-time series 45-25-4 and are 14 point favorites to knock off Arizona with an angry Aaron Rodgers. One of the best games between the two franchises was in 2016, the NFC Divisional Playoffs which the Cards won in OT 26-20.

Teams that are knocking on futilities door:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7),  Detroit Lions (4-7), N.Y. Giants 3-8

Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down: The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 14.

Five Up Five Down: The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 12

Unafraid Show NFL Rankings Week #12

Five Up Five Down The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL teams week 12 is where we rank the five best and five worst teams in the NFL. Anybody can list the best teams. It takes real skill to sort through the mess that is the bottom of the league. Week 12 has already kicked off with the Bears, Cowboys, and Saints all enjoying Thanksgiving with big wins! What did we learn from Week 11? The Steelers are serious contenders in the AFC even without a franchise RB, Colts are better then we think, and the Chiefs and Rams are the most exciting teams in football! Do you like that? Does your team sadly qualify for worst teams for Week 12?

Leave a comment, share, and email us: ImMad@UnafraidShow.com.

5 UP: The 5 Best NFL Teams Week 12 Gobble, Gobble!

1. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (10-1) Last Week: 1st

Drew Brees, is not going to win the MVP but he should. The Saints destroyed the Falcons yesterday and continue to roll past everyone they face. Drew Brees put up big numbers again in what has been a perfect season (3,135 Yards 29 TDs 2 int 127.3 Rating). What is more disturbing for those is the Saints are starting to play excellent defense. If they continue to play like they have the past two weeks, then all other teams are in trouble. The Saints are like the perfect deep fried Cajun Turkey. It melts in your mouth, and you always want seconds on Thanksgiving.

2. LOS ANGELES RAMS (10-1) Last Week: 3rd

Coach McVay is the most exciting play caller in the game. The Rams were fun to watch in a 54-51 win over the Chiefs, but that defense is still a concern. Jared Goff (3,547 yards 26 TD’s) and Todd Gurley (1,043 Yards 13 TDs) are the kingpins of what has become an unstoppable machine. The only thing slowing down this team is the Bye Week on the schedule. These Rams are those amazing sweet potatoes that a Thanksgiving Dinner cannot be without.

3. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (9-2) Last Week: 2nd

The Chiefs created history!  First team to lose a game scoring over 50 points. It was a fun game to watch but also a reminder that the defense still is swiss cheese. Patrick Mahomes II had six touchdown passes and over 400 yards passing, but it was those three costly interceptions that cost them the most. He will learn from it and is on his way to being the league’s MVP.  The Chiefs barely lost to the Patriots and Rams on the road, which makes them a trendy choice to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl. It’s sort of sad that they won’t be playing this Sunday enjoying the Bye Week.  Oh! The Chiefs are that amazing gravy that makes everything pop and is a fan favorite.

4. CHICAGO BEARS (8-3) Last Week: Unranked

It’s time to stand-up and recognize the Chicago Bears. A 23-16 day victory in Detroit for Thanksgiving with Chase Daniel at QB is impressive. This team has yet to be behind at halftime all year. The defense is just superior creating points on turnovers and won the game with an INT returned for a score the second straight game they have done that. They are the mashed potatoes that are always a strong choice to be the 2nd best item on your Thanksgiving plate.

5. PITTSBURGH STEELERS (7-2-1) Last Week: Unranked

The Steelers are in Denver this week after one of the most impressive comebacks in team history overcoming the Jaguars on the road. Big Ben was awful in the first half of that game, but he came on and led the team to what he described as the best comeback of his career. The Steelers will be on the road challenging the Denver Broncos (4-6) who are coming off a big win over the LA Chargers. Pittsburgh is like that consistent Pumpkin Pie you want to devour on Thanksgiving Day with extra whipped cream!

Closing in on the top 5 this week:

New England Patriots (7-3), Houston Texans (7-3), LA Chargers (7-3).

5 DOWN: The 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 11 The Turkeys of the NFL

28.BUFFALO BILLS (3-7) Last Week: 28th

I kind of look at Buffalo as the cranberry sauce on a Thanksgiving Day table. You look at it but have no interest in it. The Bills will be looking for two in a row with Matt Barkley at the helm. As bad as the offense has been most of the year, the defense is a respectable two overall allowing just 302 yards a game. The Bills will host Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7) who are trying to recover from a devastating loss against the Steelers.

29. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (3-7) Last Week: Unranked

Tampa is that dessert that your Aunt brought over for Thanksgiving that looks good but tastes awful. The Bucs are hopeless trying to defend the field of play. They rank 27th in the league in yards given up. Combine that with the uncertainty at the QB position with Fitzpatrick and Winston back again throwing brutal interceptions its a recipe for disaster. I will be shocked if Head Coach Dirk Koetter survives this season. The Bucs have so many offensive weapons but will be lucky to win 1 or 2 more games. Tampa will host the (2-8) San Francisco 49ers.

30 SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (2-8) Last Week: 29th

The 49ers, due to injuries, are the stuffing that is ok, but you avoid putting on your plate during Thanksgiving. This team will put up a fight but most likely will come up short due to a lack of healthy players. The 49ers will play the (3-7) Buccaneers in Tampa

31 OAKLAND RAIDERS (2-8) Last Week: 32nd

Well, the Raiders are peas you never eat on Thanksgiving. It’s been a gross season though they pulled out a win in Arizona that saw Jon Gruden and Derek Carr get into it often. Oakland is probably better off losing every game from here on in, but they won’t even do that right. The Raiders will be in Baltimore to battle the Ravens (5-5).

32. ARIZONA CARDINALS (2-8) Last Week: 30th

Brussel Sprouts! The Cardinals are the worst team in the NFL right now and the last thing you would pick to eat on Thanksgiving. It’s hard to watch this team from the coaching and the hopelessness of the offense which is ranked dead last in the National Football league. This season cannot end fast enough as the Cardinals will travel to LA to battle the (7-3) Chargers.

Teams that are knocking on futilities door:

N.Y. Jets (3-7), Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7), Detroit Lions (3-7).

Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down: The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 13. Be blessed and safe during this Holiday Season.

Five Up Five Down The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 11

5 Worst NFL teams week 11

Five Up Five Down The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL teams week 11 is where we rank the five best and five worst teams in the NFL. Anybody can list the best teams. It takes real skill to sort through the mess that is the bottom of the league.   Week 11 is hours away from kicking off in Pittsburgh on this crunchy groove Thursday. What did we learn from Week 10? The Saints offense is insane in the membrane.  Chiefs and Rams continue to roll, which makes this weeks match-up must-watch TV.  The Raiders are horrible, and the Jets should really be embarrassed!  Does your team sadly qualify for worst teams for Week 11?

Leave a comment, share, and email us: ImMad@UnafraidShow.com.

5 UP: The 5 Best NFL Teams Week 11

1. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (8-1) Last Week: 2nd

This team got a terrific defensive performance that held the Bengals to 14 points on the road. The Saints still give up 23.6 a game and 376.2 yards a game, which still needs improvement and ranks 20th, but last Sunday is something to build on.  Drew Brees and Michael Thomas did it yet again as the Saints electrifying offense put up 51 points against Cincinnati. New Orleans has the highest scoring offense in the game averaging 36.7 and 6th overall in the NFL. The Big Bayou will welcome the Philadelphia Eagles to town. Saints are heavy nine-point favorites. In the 30 previous meetings between the two franchises, Eagles have a 17-13 lead with the most recent match-up coming in 2015 (Eagles win 39-14).

2. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (9-1) Last Week: 3rd

They didn’t destroy the Cardinals, which I thought was going to happen, but the Chiefs still put up 26 points in an impressive win. Patrick Mahomes II kept it going but was mortal with only 249 yards which snapped his 300-yard streak. The Chiefs still rank 31st in total team defense which is a major concern especially this week against the Rams. Kansas City has the #1 point differential in the NFL with +113 points.  The Chiefs travel to LA to battle the (9-1) Rams in a Monday night contest that was slated to play in Mexico City. The two teams combined are 18-2. Rams are 3.5 favorites, and in the 11 meetings between the two sides, Chiefs have a 7-4 record with the last meeting being in 2014.

3. LOS ANGELES RAMS (9-1) Last Week:  4th

The Rams scored 36 points but barely beat Seattle once again. LA has the #1 offense in the NFL averaging 448 yards a game and the 3rd most points at 33.5.  Jared Goff and Todd Gurley both had huge days which is nothing new for them. The defense is still a concern ranked 23rd in the NFL. In a weather break, the Rams get a home game in LA (fires withstanding) due to field issues (rain destroyed the field in Mexico City) on Monday night. This could be a preview of SB 53 in Atlanta. Rams could clinch a playoff spot with a win.

4.LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (7-2) Last Week: 5th

The Chargers have won 6 straight games, and the defense keeps getting better and better. Here is the good news. Joey Bosa practiced this week for the first time since week 1. The trifecta on offense of Philip Rivers (2,459 yards 21 TD  4 Int 67% 115 QB rating), Melvin Gordon (672 Yards 5.38 AVG. 7 TD’s), and Keenan Allen(53 Catches 687 yards 2 TD’s)  are producing big numbers. I have said this all along this team could be the most complete in the NFL ranking 11th in Offense and 12th on defense. The Chargers will welcome the Denver Broncos (3-6) to town. Broncos lead the all-time series 65-51-1 with both teams splitting last year. The Chargers will be 7 points favorites this Sunday.

5. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (7-3) Last Week: 1st

Well, prosperity did not last long for the Patriots who looked like a banged-up team in Tennessee and lost 38-24.  Fortunately for the Pats, they get a bye week perfectly placed to allow Gronk, Julian Edelman, Sony Michel, and many more to heal-up. New England might have an issue with an offensive line that looked overmatched for the first time since early in the year. New England will return on the 25th, with the perfect get well card, a battle versus the (3-7) N.Y. Jets.

Closing in on the top 5 this week:

Houston Texans (6-3), Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2-1), Chicago Bears (6-3), Washington (6-3)

5 DOWN: The 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 11

28. BUFFALO BILLS (3-7) Last Week:  30th

What a great week the Bills had.  They throttled the Jets on the road and cut Nathan Peterman. It was like Christmas came early for Bill fans! The Bills will enjoy a week off and have turkey and the carryover of the team’s 3rd win of the year. Somehow Matt Barkley looked like Jim Kelly but then again the QB play was so bad that anyone would have looked competent over Derek Anderson and Nathan Peterman. Buffalo ranks 31st in offense but an NFL respectable 7th overall on defense. The Bills will have a chance at another win as the sinking Jaguars come to Buffalo on the 25th of November.

29. NEW YORK GIANTS (2-7) Last Week: 31st

For what its worth, the Giants got a gutsy win on the road on a game-winning drive late. Eli had 3 TD passes with no turnovers, and OBJ had a big night. The defense is still 25th in the NFL, and it just doesn’t seem like Pat Shurmur is Head Coach material. The dysfunction on this team is still evident. Whether Giants fans want them to tank or not, New York has another winnable game this Sunday against the defensively inept Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-6) at home. Giants will be 1.5 point favorites and have won 14 of the 21 contests between the two franchises (Tampa won last year 25-23).

30. ARIZONA CARDINALS (2-7) Last Week: 28th

If only they could play the 49ers for 16 games, a perfect season would be in store!  The Cardinals were respectable in Kansas City. It’s quite apparent they will be offensively challenged all year long, ranking dead last in the NFL. David Johnson did have a good game by his standards (98 yards on the ground and 85 through the air), but Josh Rosen throwing 2 more interceptions looks every bit as an unpolished rookie can look. The Cardinals have a very winnable game at home against the worst team on our list, the 1-8 Oakland Raiders. The Cards are 4 point favorites, and in nine meetings between the two franchises, the Raiders have won 5 and the Cardinals 4. This is my nomination for the early Turkey Bowl (3-15) record between the two squads.

31. SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (2-8) Last Week: 29th

They played another solid game but came up short against the Giants.  Nick Mullens had 2 big interceptions which offset a terrific performance from Matt Breida who had over 100 yards on the ground.  Say what you will about the record, this team comes to play no matter who is healthy or who is not which is a credit to Kyle Shanahan. The 49ers will enjoy an off week and return on the 25th playing the Buccaneers in Tampa.

32. OAKLAND RAIDERS (1-8) Last Week: 32nd

When your QB throws the ball away on 4th down, you realize what a train wreck this season has been.  The one positive is all the first round picks they have stockpiled. That’s it.  Is Jon Gruden the man you want leading this franchise forward? The team ranks 23rd on offense and 24th on defense which actually is better than I thought. How happy is Khalil Mack in Chicago and Amari Cooper in Dallas? A commitment to chaos seems to be the Raiders way. Vegas are you ready for this trash?

Teams that are knocking on futilities door: 

N.Y. Jets (3-7), Jacksonville Jaguars (3-6), Detroit Lions (3-6)

Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down: The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 12.

Five Up Five Down: The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL Teams Week 10

Worst NFL teams week 10

Five Up Five Down: The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL teams week 10 is where we rank the five best and five worst teams in the NFL. Anybody can list the best teams. It takes real skill to sort through the mess that is the bottom of the league.   Week 10 is hours away from kicking off in Pittsburgh on this crunchy groove Thursday. What did we learn from Week 9? The Saints offense with Drew Brees and Michael Thomas is unstoppable, Patriots, with major injuries and mediocre three-quarters of play, can still beat you by 14 points, The Oakland Raiders are the laughingstock of the league, and Jason Garrett might actually be on borrowed time. Does your team sadly qualify for worst teams for Week 10?

Leave a comment, share, and email us: ImMad@UnafraidShow.com.

5 UP: The 5 Best NFL Teams Week Ten

1. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (7-2) Last Week: 4th

As the legendary Boston band Aerosmith would sing, the train kept a rolling all night long in Week #9 win versus the Packers.  It seems like an eternity since that embarrassing loss in Detroit, and they are now winners of 6 straight. I figure I’ll get some heat and be very unpopular that I put New England in the number one spot with two losses, deal with it. They are better than anyone right now. It wasn’t pretty versus the Packers, but they beat them by 14 when the clock struck 00:00. Tom Brady (2,494 Yards 17 TDs 7 Int 97.6 QB Rating) is still the best at getting everyone involved, and his comfort level with Josh Gordon ( 5 catches 130 Yards TD) is growing. Cordarelle Patterson (11 carries for 61 Yards 1 TD) was converted into a “Big RB” and looked like a playmaker a typical Patriots move that works. Julian Edelman is the best do everything guy in the NFL.

The Patriots defense made Aaron Rodgers look mortal, which is another reason for all other teams in the NFL to be concerned. Defensive end Trey Flowers caused constant pressure vs. a beleaguered Packers offensive line. Bill Belichick is the master at getting it right. He sculpts whatever the talent he has into a cohesive, reliable defensive unit. Alex Cora brought the World Series trophy to Gillette Field.  Will it be any surprise if Bill Belichick brings the Lombardi Trophy to Fenway in April? No! The Patriots travel to Tennessee to take on the feisty Titans (4-4) and former teammate Malcolm Butler.  Mike Vrabel a former longtime Super Bowl-winning (2 TD catches in SB) Patriots LB is the Tennessee Titans Head Coach. The Pats will be 7 point favorites and hold a 26-15-1 record against the Titans/Oilers franchise.

2. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (7-1) Last Week: 3rd

Oh, the Saints went marching into the end zone a lot this past Sunday afternoon in the marquee match-up of the day. They hung the first loss on the Rams ledger by outscoring LA, 45-35.  Drew Brees and Michael Thomas might be the most lethal combo in the league. With Mark Ingram back healthy with the combination of Alvin Kamara, it’s just not fair to try and stop that running duo. The offensive line does a fantastic job of creating time and space for Brees and the running backs. New Orleans just signed WR Dez Bryant to add to an embarrassment of riches.

The defense is still the teams Achilles heel. Only nine teams have given up more points. The Saints D ranks 28th in the red zone. The good news for the Saints is the Chiefs and Rams are equally as inept at stopping opposing teams. In fairness to the Saints, they have suffered some injuries but if they want to be favorites to win the SB in Atlanta that D has to shore up some gaping holes in the secondary that Eli Apple will not cure.   Sean Payton’s crew has now beat the Ravens, Vikings, and Rams in consecutive weeks. It’s the simple reason why I leapfrogged them over KC.  This week is another tough test going to Cincinnati to take on the (5-3) Bengals. The Saints are 4.5 favorites over the Bengals, but Cincy leads the series 7-6.

3. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (8-1) Last Week: 2nd

Chiefs fans might be unhappy with me. Hey, you still have the best barbecue in the nation and time to move up our Unafraid rankings. Sure the Chiefs are 8-1 and just blew out the Cleveland Browns, and they get moved from two to three in my weekly rankings? What the heck am I thinking? I’m just more impressed with the Patriots and Saints. Chiefs have big wins (Steelers, Chargers, Jags, Bengals) but they still have major defensive concerns giving up 226 points. Good news for the defense, safety Daniel Sorensen was activated from the IR.

The offense is just playing Madden 19 on the easy level with a league-leading 101 point differential. Patrick Mahomes II is just insane with what he is doing (2,901 yards, 29 TD’s 7 INTs 116.7 QB Rating) though his consecutive 4 TD passes streak ended he has now thrown for 300 yards in 8 straight games. He is that good.  Travis Kelce has been a stud all year long (51 catches 741 yards 6 TDs). Kareem Hunt has also been playing at an All-Pro level and torched the Browns (17 Att 91 yards 2 TD’s 5.4 AVG). The Chiefs have the (2-6) Arizona Cardinals coming to town which should be another blowout win. The Chiefs are 18.5 point favorites (the Biggest spread of the year), and KC has won 8 out of the 12 contests with one ending in a tie between the two squads.

4. LOS ANGELES RAMS (8-1) Last Week:  1st

Oh, how the mighty have fallen!  From first to fourth in a brutal knockdown. I have preached all year long that the defense will be the downfall for Los Angeles. They skirted defeats to Minnesota, Denver, Seattle, and Green Bay with below average defensive display. Is Aaron Donald one of the best defensive players in the league? Yes, he is, and you could argue the best, but the LB core Dante Fowler or no Dante Fowler and that secondary is a sieve. Will Talib’s return help? It should, but what the heck has happened to Marcus Peters? Wade Phillips has to improve the defense if the Rams want to get back to the top spot in our rankings.

The offense once again put up some big numbers. Jared Goff led a massive comeback with a tremendous performance (391 Yards 3 TDs 70% and a 115.7 QB Rating). Todd Gurley was shut down and held to 68 yards vs. the Saints, but Brandin Cooks was a monster with 114 yards and TD. Why is Brandin Cooks on his third team in three years? What a player! The roadblock to Atlanta and SB 53 for LA could be the play of the defense. Rams will be home to Seattle (4-4) this week. The first meeting between the two teams was close; a 33-31 Rams NFC West win in October. Los Angeles are heavy favorites at 11.5 points, but Seattle has a 23-18 advantage in the all-time series.

5. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (6-2) Last Week: 5th

The Chargers went up to Seattle, and they balled. LA both defensively and offensively did what they needed to win in a 25-17 victory over the red-hot Seahawks. Melvin Gordon was special and ran for 113 yards. Keenan Allen looked like a top 10 Wide Reciever hauling in 6 catches for 124 yards. This offense led by Philip Rivers has so many weapons and will get better when Tight End Hunter Henry returns in December. Sure they are not seeing a lot of people show up at the StubHub Center, but this offense should be drawing more fans into those empty seats!

Why I think the Chargers could be the most complete team in our top 5 and my darkhorse SB entrant is because of the defense. They have only allowed 180 points this year. Joey Bosa is closing in on a return which led to an ESPN analyst to take an ill-advised swing at him. This unit is loaded with playmakers and a stout secondary. If you haven’t recognized Desmond King and what he is doing at the CB position check this out! The Chargers get to travel North with a divisional showdown against the woeful Oakland Raiders (1-7). LA is a strong 10 point favorite and beat Oakland 26-10 earlier this year. The Silver and Black do lead the all-time series 63-53-2.

Closing in on the top 5 this week:

Carolina Panthers (6-2), Houston Texans (6-3), Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2-1)

5 DOWN: The 5 Worst NFL Teams Week Ten 

28. ARIZONA CARDINALS (2-6) Last Week: 28th

Arizona did not move down or up our rankings due to enjoying a Bye Week. The Cardinals have two wins both against the equally inept San Francisco 49ers. Sam Bradford was released, which makes you wonder why he was even signed in the first place.  2018 has been a complete failure. You have to wonder if the Coach and GM won’t be getting a pink slip at the end of the year. One must feel for the future HOFer Larry Fitzgerald. You were hoping for a better year, but the Cardinals are falling apart at the seems. Do you miss Bruce Arians yet?

When you talk Worst teams NFL week 10, Arizona must be brought up. Cardinals rank 32nd in offense, and the defense is not far behind in being woeful. Josh Rosen continues to learn (1,072 yards 10 TDs 12 INTS). as well as be more accurate. The Cardinals after the Bye Week have to figure out a way to slow down the most prolific offense in Kansas City (8-1) as Patrick Mahomes II looks to make it 9 straight games throwing for over 300 yards. I see a colossal blowout in the making.

29. SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (2-7) Last Week: 32nd

Well, for a team completely devastated by major injuries everywhere, how refreshing was Nick Mullins last Thursday evening.  He put up a brilliant performance against the Oakland Raiders in a 34-3 win the 49ers second of the year.  One must wonder if the team should tank it yet could Mullins change that philosophy? Let’s temper the appearance with the fact the Raiders have the 2nd worst defense in the NFL. One guy who always shows up is Greg Kittle another gigantic performance (4 catches 108 yards with a TD).

The defense was impressive as well against the Raiders. They collected eight sacks and were constantly disrupting the running game. It was the best performance of the year from the defense that was spearheaded by Cassius Marsh and Deforest Buckner. San Francisco will get a chance to build on its successful performance on Monday Night against a struggling N.Y. Giants (1-7) team at home. The 49ers are 3 point favorites at home, and the series is dead even at 20 games apiece.

30. BUFFALO BILLS (2-7) Last Week:  29th

Oh, Nathan Peterman strikes again!  If you can select a fantasy defense off of the waiver wire going up against Peterman, do it. Let’s now role the interceptions reel.  What’s really crazy is Peterman has 11 INTs in his last 95 passes, whereas Aaron Rodgers has 11 interceptions in his last 993 pass attempts. It’s simply ugly. The Bears thrashed Buffalo 41-9. It was a forgettable game in what is turning into a forgettable season. It’s surprising that the Bills have two wins this year (Tennessee and Minnesota should be ashamed) and I think that Buffalo should just go all out tank mode.  Why put Josh Allen back in behind an offensive line that is simply horrendous?  He could get seriously hurt and has been sacked 21 times even with his mobility.

Buffalo has a short road trip to New Jersey as they take on the (3-6) N.Y. Jets. The Jets are favored by 7.5 points, but the Bills lead the all-time series against there AFC East rivals 61-54.

31. NEW YORK GIANTS (1-7) Last Week: 31st

Good news, the Giants didn’t lose or fall to 32nd in the rankings.  Though the Cowboys are gaining ground in whacked out franchise mode N.Y. Giants are still #1 in dysfunction. It’s such a messed up situation, I don’t know where to start! I thought with all the moves this team made in the offseason they were going to compete in the NFC East and be a playoff team. Lord was I wrong! Pat Shurmur looks lost, Eli looks like he should be in a retirement home, OBJ should be frustrated, and that offensive line with the high priced addition of Nate Soldier is a pile of dog crap. The Raiders at least realized it needed to tear it down.  The Giants didn’t do anything at the trade deadline, which was a big mistake.

The off-season for this franchise is going to be critical and the teams most important. When watching a Giants game, other than Barkley, you wonder why a total rebuild has not already begun. The Giants will face the 49ers on Monday Night. Eli will start versus the 49ers, which just makes you wonder does this organization get it. The combined record of these two proud franchises is (3-14).  Shouldn’t the league be able to flex this turkey bowl?

32. OAKLAND RAIDERS (1-7) Last Week: 30th

Laughingstock, unwatchable, miserable. Add a derogatory word, and it works describing the Silver and Black’s 2018-19 season. This is the worst team in the NFL.  How happy is Khalil Mack in Chicago to be out of this mess?   Jon Gruden, are we tanking yet? Well, they should.  Actually, the Raiders really need to tank next year as well to get Tua.  I don’t even know where to begin when you lose 34-3 to a (1-7) 49ers team its ugly. Derek Carr was sacked eight times, and nothing about the Oakland Raiders looked competitive last Thursday night.

The franchise should start prepping draft needs and continue unloading players in the off-season and be in full rebuild mode. Oakland will face the red-hot Los Angeles Chargers (6-2) at home this Sunday.  Expect the team to be dealing with its eighth loss of the year. The Silver and Black are the leaders of the worst teams NFL week 10.

Teams that are knocking on futilities door: 

Cleveland Browns (2-6-1), N.Y. Jets (3-6), Dallas Cowboys (3-5)

Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down: The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 11.

Five Up Five Down: The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL Teams Week Nine

5 Worst NFL teams Week nine

Five Up Five Down: The 5 Best and 5 Worst NFL Teams Week nine is where we rank the five best and five worst teams in the NFL. Anybody can list the best teams. It takes real skill to sort through the mess that is the bottom of the league.   Week nine is hours away from kicking off in Santa Clara. What did we learn from Week 8? The Rams can win the close games. Saints are better than we all think, Jameis Winston is not long for the NFL, and the Seahawks are better than we thought they would be. Does your team sadly qualify for worst teams for Week 9? Give us your take who should be on the list and who shouldn’t.

5 UP: The 5 Best NFL Teams Week Nine

1. LOS ANGELES RAMS (8-0) Last Week:  1st

The Rams proved that they even need luck once in awhile beating a very game, Green Bay Packers team at home. A Field Goal followed by a late fumble kept the perfect season alive. Jared Goff threw for 3 TD’s, and Todd Gurley ran for 114 yards and 81 yards. (800 yards 11 TD’s 4.7 Avg.) The Rams will need to tighten up the defense on the road against the New Orleans Saints (6-1). The Saints are the biggest threat and best opponent that LA has faced this year. The Saints are currently favored by one point, but the Rams lead the all-time series, 41-33.

2. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (7-1) Last Week: 2nd

Kansas City keeps rolling along, and Patrick Mahomes II keeps making big plays. Mahomes II threw for 4 TDs and 300 yards (2,526 Yards 26 TD’s 6 INT 115.3 Rating) in another big division win over the Denver Broncos. The defense is never going to be top 10 worthy, but they make key stops on 3rd down.  Kansas City should have more success this Sunday when they challenge the Cleveland Browns (2-5-1). The Chiefs are 8.5 favorites and hold a slight lead in the head to head matchups 12-11-2.

3. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (6-1) Last Week: 4th

Call it revenge but the Saints exorcized the Minnesota Vikings Miracle with a big 30-20 win on the road. The score could have been higher if a few players caught passes instead of bad drops. This team is rolling through its toughest stretch. I still have concerns with that defense, but like the Chiefs, that high octane offense covers a lot of pimples. No rest for Drew Brees and crew the next challenge will be the unbeaten Los Angeles Rams (8-0) at home. Sean Payton talks about this matchup and a chance for the Saints to claim the top spot in the NFC.

4. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (6-2) Last Week: 5th

Who’s the hottest team right now? Might be the Patriots. As the leaves fully turn and the winter weather rolls in the Patriots are getting closer to taking their spot as the best team in the NFL. With the Red Sox winning the World Series it’s now up to the Patriots to add to the City of Champions. Sony Michel will be back, and the defense only allowed 6 points last week. Tom Brady does what he does best, beating Buffalo. Now we get the showdown that we have all been waiting for, Aaron Rodgers vs. Tom Brady. It’s an opportunity for Tom to let everyone know, who is still the best QB in the NFL. Aaron already has said who he thinks the best Quarterback in the NFL is.  Patriots are 6 point favorites over Green Bay (3-3-1) at home. Packers lead the all-time series 6-5.

5. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (5-2) Last Week: Unranked

The Chargers enjoyed a Bye Week after a dramatic win in London. They will have a huge test coming up this Sunday against Seattle. Philip Rivers is playing at a high level (2,008 Yards, 17 TDs 3 INT 117.8 RTG). Head Coach Anthony Lynn thinks better days are ahead, “We definitely have a lot of improvement and things we can focus on and get better at,” Lynn said. “Seven games, we’re not there yet. But I do feel like the guys are moving in the right direction.” That’s a very dangerous thought since this team has Super Bowl talent at every position.

Joey Bosa and Melvin Gordon, the team’s two best players might be back.  This is my team to watch as the 2nd half of the NFL season takes place. The LA Chargers will travel to the Emerald City to battle the red-hot Seahawks (4-3) and will be 1.5 point underdogs. Seattle leads the all-time series 26-24.

Closing in on the top 5 this week:

Washington Redskins (5-2), Carolina Panthers (5-2), Seattle Seahawks (4-3)

5 DOWN: The 5 Worst NFL Teams Week Nine

28. ARIZONA CARDINALS (2-6) Last Week: 32nd

The Cardinals got a reprieve and doubled up against the 49ers. They have two wins both against San Francisco who unfortunately can’t play every week. 2018 has so been a complete failure. One must feel for the future HOFer Larry Fitzgerald. You were hoping for a better year, but the Cardinals are falling apart at the seems. Do you miss Bruce Arians yet? Cardinals rank 32nd in offense, and the defense is not far behind in being woeful. Josh Rosen continues to learn (1,072 yards 10 TDs 12 INTS). as well as be more accurate. The Cardinals can’t lose this week they are on a Bye week so they might be safe from sinking in the rankings for now.

29. BUFFALO BILLS (2-6) Last Week:  28th

It was nice to see Thurman Thomas get his due at halftime during the Pats vs. Bills game on Monday Night. What was utterly unpleasing to the eyes was watching Derek Anderson trying to play QB with an Offensive Line that is the worst in football. First of all, Derek should be golfing somewhere enjoying retired time and now Bills fans you will get Nathan Peterman. Peterman! What does that guarantee? A chance to finish the season as the worst team in the NFL.

Enjoy the Buffalo wings and the commissioner in April saying, “With the first pick the NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills select! Great move Buffalo getting rid of Tyrod Taylor. Buffalo will most likely lose to the Chicago Bears (4-3) at home this Sunday. Chicago will be 10 points road favorites and have won 7 of the 12 contests between these two teams.

30. OAKLAND RAIDERS (1-6) Last Week: 29th

The Raiders should be in full tank mode sorry Jon Gruden your commitment to excellence is in question. On a positive note, the team realized it needed to tear it down. Derek Carr played better on Sunday (244 yards 3 TD’s), but it was not enough to combat what is a horrible defense that yielded 461 yards in a brutal 42-28 loss to the Colts at home. Let’s face it Khalil Mack will not walk back through those doors but all picks acquired from getting him better be used on defense. Oakland will have a chance to win tonight as they battle the 49ers in Santa Clara. The Raiders are 2.5 underdogs, but they do lead the all-time series 7-6.

31. NEW YORK GIANTS (1-7) Last Week: 30th

They might not be ranked 32nd in our rankings yet, but they are #1 in dysfunction. It’s such a messed up situation I don’t know where to start. I thought with all the moves this team made in the offseason they were going to compete in the NFC East and be a playoff team. Lord was I wrong. Pat Shurmur looks lost, Eli looks like he should be in a retirement home, OBJ should be frustrated, and that Offensive Line with the high priced addition of Nate Soldier is a pile of dog crap. The Raiders at least realized it needed to tear it down, what the Giants did was sit pat.

The off-season for this franchise is going to be critical and the teams most important. When watching a Giants game other than Barkley, you wonder why a total rebuild has not already begun. The Giants are mercifully off this week.

32. SAN FRANCISCO 49ers (1-7) Last Week: 31st

As much as I wanted to put the Giants here and those in New York wanted me to do so, the 49ers on paper and in results are the worse team in Football. It wouldn’t have been the case, but when you lose so many players to injuries, it was bound to happen. They should tank and get the top pick in the draft. With Kyle Shanahan, John Lynch, and a healthy Jimmy G this organization will be on the verge of big things soon. 49ers get a chance to climb out of the 32nd ranking tonight by beating the Raiders at home. They will be hoping to move out of the label of being the worst team in the NFL for week nine.

Teams that are knocking on futilities door:

Indianapolis Colts (3-5), Cleveland Browns (2-5), N.Y. Jets (3-5)

Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down: The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 10.