According to OverTheCap.com, the Colts are projected to have $87 million in cap room for 2018, the third most in the NFL. They’re projected to have a top-five pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. They’re starting a quarterback, Jacoby Brissett, who has proven worthy of offseason trade interest, meaning the Colts could use him as bait to acquire more draft picks or quality starters. They’re in a position to let first-year GM Chris Ballard rebuild a roster with the luxury of having a star quarterback already in place.
Matt Bowen, NFL writer: No. Hightower’s versatility and leadership skills will be missed initially for a defense that has struggled to play consistently this season. And that should be expected. But it’s also another opportunity for the Patriots to thrive in an adverse situation. Bill Belichick and his staff will massage the scheme to hide the weaknesses of Kyle Van Noy, David Harris and others who step into this role.
Domonique Foxworth, senior writer at The Undefeated: Yes. Before Hightower’s injury, the defense was this team’s weakest link. But there was some hope that they could be good enough. Now most of that hope is gone. Given the current state of their defense, finding ways to compensate for losing their most versatile defender will be a nearly impossible. But then again, so was coming back from being down 28-3 against the Falcons.
That pattern is echoed across nearly all statistics, with the share of yards receiving for young players jumping from 37 percent to 48 percent; touchdowns rising from 41 percent to 51 percent; yards passing going from 22 percent to 32 percent; and tackles increasing from 39 percent to 48 percent as players on rookie contracts get more responsibility.
I think that mentality has changed over the years, too, said Bills linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, who entered the league as an undrafted player in 2005. Because before you got in this league, no matter how good you were unless you were like a first-rounder, if you were a rookie, (coaches) didn’t trust you, didn’t like you. And I think that mentality has changed.
Six weeks after authoring what seemed like his signature play, against the same team the legs, instincts and resilience to escape danger Wentz pulled off a third-quarter play to surpass that, eluding traffic just long enough, leaping while getting hit, and squeezing off a pass to Corey Clement on the edge of the end zone that would’ve been tough to complete under semi-normal conditions.
All the Randall Cunningham/Donovan McNabb/Michael Vick comparisons were dusted off, deservedly so. And one quarter later, they all got replaced.
This time, he didn’t throw, just ran. But a tiny percentage of players ever the aforementioned Eagles predecessors, maybe Steve Young, maybe Roger Staubach could have been expected to get away from all the pass rushers around him and take off for 17 yards.
The Falcons’ offense is officially in disarray. They don’t know when to pass or run, or whom should do the pass-catching or running. Steve Sarkisian’s play-calling has caused Matt Ryan to regress. It’s good that Dan Quinn’s young, fast defense keeps playing better. They’ll find a way to score enough to squeak by the low-flying Jets.
Chuck Pagano is on the brink of losing the team for good. T.Y. Hilton, their best offensive player, is losing his mind. The defense looks lost against everything the opponent does. The Bengals have done plenty of their own bungling with coaching and offense, but they are trustworthy enough to take care of business against lesser foes with Andy Dalton in a non-primetime game at home.
The Chargers and the Patriots are two of the league’s hottest teams, but Philip Rivers is the QB more likely to be cooled off here. New England will be able to run better in this matchup, setting up big downfield shots to Rob Gronkowski and Brandin Cooks. Rivers won’t be able to keep up after the Patriots contain Melvin Gordon.
There weren’t many style points in Minnesota’s field-goal fest with Kai Forbath on Sunday, but it added up to a dominant home victory over Baltimore despite a shorthanded offense. The Vikings can keep rolling with a game against the Browns in England next on the schedule.
No. 3 seed Rams (5-2): First place, NFC West. The train keeps rolling for LA with Sean McVay. This is unlike any offense Jeff Fisher had under his staff. After losing to Seattle, the Rams need to follow the Seahawks’ lead and not step into a Giants trap on a long road trip.
This is just something that is just common sense and I think the more open dialogue that we have together, the more communication that happens in collaboration, the easier it is for us to work together with community partners to make our communities safer and to make them a better place, York said.
Moving forward, York, the Niners and the law enforcement organizations hope to get more professional sports teams on board with their cause as well as seek support from other community organizations around the country.
And while Thursday’s announcement has little to do with the protests taking place during the national anthem, 49ers safety Eric Reid expressed pride in the fact that the Niners are continuing to take a leading role in creating change for the better.
The Raiders expended a ton of offensive energy in desperation mode against the Chiefs, and not even a long week will help them much with this long, tough follow-up road trip. Expect Tyrod Taylor and LeSean McCoy to help keep the Buffalo train rolling, while Derek Carr and his receivers will be parked more into place.