Sacked coaches, benched quarterbacks, coronavirus outbreaks and Tom Brady pulling a JR Smith...
It's been a wild and unpredictable week in the NFL, and we're here to take shots at the biggest headlines in this week's collection of Intentional Fouls.
Tom has a deflating loss to the Bears
Last night's ugly matchup between the Bears and Bucs came out with an unexpected loss for the Bucs—mostly because Tom Brady forgot it was fourth down.
As expected, the Internet showed up Friday morning ready to clown the best quarterback of all time, speculating as to whether the 43-year-old is still (mentally) in it to win it. Has Father Time come for Father Tom?
Honestly, probably not. Brady's one of the best deep throwers of 2020, and that's with an offense that still hasn't clicked like New England clockwork. With Chris Godwin sidelined, Mike Evans nursing an injured ankle and injuries dotting the offensive roster, the Bucs are struggling when they have the talent to be a leading NFL team.
But none of that excuses Tom's faux pas on that crucial fourth down—how the hell did he not know what was going on? It's impossible to imagine not knowing the down on a game-changing play, and especially for someone who's been playing the game almost as long as Justin Herbert's lifespan. Maybe he was too caught up in the moment, or maybe he was trying to get one over on the refs to compensate for the 100+ yards lost from penalties.
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While Tom didn't deny his forgetfulness and opted for the usual "we've got to execute better" in his postgame presser, Bruce Arians straight-up lied and said that Tom knew it was fourth down. Everyone knew that if anyone can do it in 1:30, it was Tom—but in the words of RoJo, the Bucs beat themselves.
Belichick is deliciously evil, but is he capable of biowarfare?
The NFL COVID Outbreak has finally arrived, and it came straight for the jugular of the team you love to hate: the New England Patriots.
Before anyone yells out, "Cheaters!", the fates are actually conspiring against the dynastic team this time: quarterback Cam Newton missed a key Chiefs matchup due to COVID, and now shutdown corner Stephon Gilmore tested positive for the debilitating illness.
https://t.co/CLrVeCzqPD— The Gilly Lock (@The Gilly Lock)1602094512.0
In one week, the Patriots have lost the best players on their offense and defense, and it was clear on Monday that the Patriots could have easily won that Chiefs game if Newton was healthy.
But before Gilmore left the field and discovered his diagnosis, he hugged Patrick Mahomes after the game, which begs the question: Did Bill Belichick do this on purpose to wipe out the unstoppable Mahomes for a few weeks?
Of course not, but it's hilarious to think that Belichick could do something this evil...or, at least, the NFL could try to punish him for doing this "intentionally."
Meanwhile, there's a full-on outbreak on the Titans, where nearly half their roster has tested positive so far at 23. Apparently, the Titans haven't been exactly following COVID protocol, which could result in severe punishments by the league in order to set an example.
Despite Gilmore's recently positive test, there are no new tests reported for the Titans or Patriots, and both teams are scheduled to play their Week 5 matchups. But if this coronavirus/injury trend continues, few teams will have all 22 active players standing by the end of the season—not even Bill can outsmart his way out of that.
Bill O'Brien finally sacked for the dumpster fire that is the Houston Texans
Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Just as power-hungry Bill O'Brien sought to slurp up play calling duties on an 0-4 Texans, he was finally fired this week, meaning that someone thought he was worse than Dan Quinn and Adam Gase.
But O'Brien is worse than Quinn or Gase, if for nothing other than his secret plot to take over the entire Texans organization. That's right: O'Brien proclaimed that the offensive coordinator would be calling plays for the first three games of the season, which is a weird thing for the head coach to state because… of course the OC calls the plays. The whole point of his statement was so that when the Texans lost back-to-back to three of the NFL's toughest teams, O'Brien could swoop in and pick up the play calling duties as well, knowing full well that no one could survive those games after he traded away their most valuable passing asset, Deandre Hopkins, in March.
Texans Trade DeAndre Hopkins www.youtube.com
It gets worse: apparently JJ Watt called out BOB for his coaching ability and started a player revolution that ended up getting the head coach fired.
A source tells me that JJ Watt and Bill O’Brien had a heated exchange on the practice field the week of the Steeler… https://t.co/wDH1avNqLS— John Granato (@John Granato)1602089653.0
Bill tried to emulate his former boss, Bill Belichick, but if we've learned anything over twenty years, it's this: no one can be Bill Belichick, not even a Bill that's frequented the playoffs. As former Patriots defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel steps up and becomes the new oldest head coach in NFL history, Week 5 will offer a glimpse into how the once-lofty Texans will hobble through the rest of the year.
The Washington Team is doing the most in 2020
It's been a whirlwind few months for the Washington Football Team, an NFL franchise that is doing its best to salvage a reputation that went up in flames when their creepy, illegally-taken cheerleader footage scandal leaked.
The next thing they're doing to salvage their reputation? Sending Dwayne Haskins to the back ahead of Week 5 as they promote former Panthers QB Kyle Allen to starter.
The Dwayne Haskins Experience: 🔸 Get drafted 15th overall by a HC on the hot seat 🔸 Play for three HCs in 13 games… https://t.co/Ew41uOLvd9— Kimberley A. Martin (@Kimberley A. Martin)1602077621.0
Haskins hasn't been the best QB by any means, but he's also on an incredibly dysfunctional team that's still in flux—not to mention he stands behind a bottom five offensive line unit while taking orders from a new offensive coordinator.
Pat McAfee Reacts To Dwayne Haskins Being Benched By The Washington Football Team www.youtube.com
If you don't think that a team can make the difference for a quarterback's career, just look at Andrew Luck's tragically short run due to a lacking offensive line, the brilliant Tony Romo's shortened career due to the exact same issue, or how Sam Darnold is now tripping over himself the way Mark Sanchez used to run into butts.
NFL: Denver Broncos at New York Jets Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Well guys it’s all come full circle for my guy Sam Darnold... last year he saw Ghost & this year he got sacked by o… https://t.co/6IO7mYHmDw— Ryan Clark (@Ryan Clark)1601607498.0
Maybe Haskins isn't it, but it's equally possible that he's a young quarterback that hasn't been developed properly and had a chance to thrive in Washington. Whether Haskins stays on this Football Team or joins another, here's to hoping that the quarterback is able to keep his NFL dreams alive and show his true capabilities, whatever they may be.
Sometimes I hate it here https://t.co/3ggfriITG1— Joe cardoso 📝🎙🗣 (@Joe cardoso 📝🎙🗣)1602279128.0
Sometimes I hate it here https://t.co/3ggfriITG1— Joe cardoso 📝🎙🗣 (@Joe cardoso 📝🎙🗣)1602279128.0
Last week we bet big on the Pack and Aaron Rodgers going off on the Rams D, and oh boy did it ever pay off.
Divisional Round Vibe Check (3-1)
Aaron Rodgers soared high above his over/under for yards, while easily slicing and dicing up the Los Angeles defenders. Aaron Donald was just below his usual, healthy, game-wrecking self, and it definitely makes you think this one would've been closer had he been 100%. It also has to make you wonder what's wrong with the Seattle Seahawks. How have they managed to waste Russell Wilson this badly? At least, they have their eyes on a bright future for him. Yikes.
The Bills came through in a big way against the Baltimore Ravens, but not how anyone had predicted. Defense was the name of the game when anyone with an All-22 subscription was calling for a shootout of epic proportions. Sure, I lost on a couple special overs that had this game getting into the sixties, but Josh Allen still brought me to the promised land of profits.
Each Friday, FindBet will preview the week's DFS slate, highlighting players that are priced well on DFS sites, as well as some contrarian plays that can push your team to the top of the leader board.
Most NFL DFS games have you putting a team together with players from a certain slate of games. It could be just Sunday 1:00 PM games, or it could be every game that is slated for the week. Once the last game that has eligible players is over, the final payouts are made according to how many fantasy points each team scored. Each player is worth a certain dollar amount, and you have a cap of $60,000 to build your team with. You have to have 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE, 1 FLEX (RB, WR, or TE) and 1 DEF.
The general scoring rules include (6) points for each rushing and receiving touchdown, (4) points for each passing touchdown, (0.1) points for each rushing and receiving yard gained, (0.04) points for each passing yard, and also (0.5) points for each reception. There are other scoring opportunities for defenses. Let's take a look at players we like in the first round of the NFL playoffs this weekend.
Sunday's NFL Playoff action featured six teams who don't like each other at all.
All these games were played between teams who had played each other at least once during the regular season. If you thought those games in the regular season were intense, Sunday's playoff matchups upped the stakes even more.
The Chicago Bears even replicated a dubious feat from their regular season matchup, as one of their wide receiver Anthony Miller was ejected after throwing a punch at C.J. Gardner-Johnson. The New Orleans cornerback also got into the head of Chicago wide receiver Javon Wims in the November matchup, causing Wims to get ejected in that game after he threw a punch at Gardner-Johnson.