Winners and Losers in Week 3 of the 2020 NFL Season
The NFL football season is like a roller coaster ride, but it is a long one, and there is time for redemption when things go wrong. On the other side of the coin, laughter can sometimes to turn to sorrow in a matter of days.
Each week, I look at some of the winners and losers, but they are passing snapshots. Everything can change in the blink of an eye, and that’s one of the great things about the game.
Winner – Nick Foles
The Chicago Bears came back to score a comeback victory over the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday with Mitchell Trubisky watching from the sidelines. Trubisky has been on the hot seat since last year, and his time as the starter may have finally expired.
It had to be a comeback victory because of the poor performance that was turned in by Trubisky. He completed 13 of 22 passes for 128 yards with a touchdown pass and an INT. That doesn’t sound too good, but the performance on the field was worse that it would appear to be on paper.
Bears coach Matt Nagy turned to veteran signal caller Nick Foles in the third quarter, and he threw for 188 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Bears to the unlikely victory.
All things considered, there’s a good chance that Nick Foles will take over the starting role, and that makes him one of the big Week 3 winners.
Losers – New York Football Fans
New York is arguably the most important city in the world, but when it comes to NFL football, the Big Apple is pretty rotten. Fans of the Jets and the Giants have suffered through hard times over recent years, and things are not getting any better in 2020.
Both teams are 0-3, and the performances that they turned in on Sunday were pretty ugly. The Giants lost at home to the Niners by a score of 36-9, and the Jets were crushed by the Colts 36-7 in Indianapolis.
The Empire State clubs are in particularly bad places because both teams have invested in young quarterbacks that are really not panning out. Giants signal caller Daniel Jones went 17 for 32 passing with no touchdowns and one interception. Jets signal caller Sam Darnold was 17-29 for 168 with a TD and three picks.
Rebuilding is fine, but when you may have to rebuild a rebuilding project, you are in a really in bad way. New York football fans are among the losers of Week 3, and we can only expect more of the same.
Winner – Rams Running Back Darrell Henderson
In Week 1 against the Cowboys, Malcolm Brown was the starting running back for the Rams. Brown carried the ball 18 times for 79 yards and two touchdowns, and he looked pretty good doing it. Darrell Henderson got just three carries in that game, and they went for a total of six yards.
The following week, Henderson covered 81 yards of real estate on 12 carries, and he scored a touchdown. Brown carried the ball 11 times for 47 yards, and he did not reach paydirt.
This week, Henderson was clearly the top dog, and he took full advantage of the opportunity to play the RB 1 role. He eclipsed the century mark with 114 yards on 20 carries, and he scored a touchdown. Malcolm Brown registered 19 yards on seven carries which equated to a dismal 2.7 yards per carry average.
Henderson emerged from Week 3 as the apparent go-to back for the Los Angeles Rams, so he is a clear-cut winner for the time being.
Losers – Viewers of Bengals vs. Eagles Game
The Bengals and the Eagles stumbled their way to a 23-23 tie in Philadelphia on Sunday, and it was one of the most forgettable games in recent NFL history. This being stated, if I had to name a winner between these two losers, it would definitely be the Bengals.
Cincinnati is a young team that is not built to win right now. They are starting overall top draft pick Joe Burrow, and he completed 31 of 44 passes with two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Running back Joe Mixon is just 24 years old and he’s coming off two 1100-plus rushing yard seasons, and rookie second-round selection Tee Higgins is starting to emerge.
On the other hand, Philadelphia won the Super Bowl at the end of the 2017 season, and they have made the playoffs in each of the last two years since then. They are not in the same place on the developmental path, so they were losers during Week 3, and the franchise itself appears to be on a downward spiral.
Winner – Cowboys Wide Receiver Cedric Wilson
Cedric Wilson was the 218th pick in the 2018 draft, and he was waived last year by the Cowboys. When no one picked him up, they cut him. He did land a spot on the practice squad and his woes continued when he has put on the injury list in December.
He made the team this year but he was only on the field for a few plays during the first two weeks. In Week 3, his fortunes changed.
He was in the huddle for 29% of the offensive plays, and he made a lot out of his limited time on the field. The resilient Wilson snared five of seven targets for 107 yards and two touchdowns in a losing effort.
I don’t know if he earned himself more playing time, but I do know that he is one of the Week 3 winners in my book.
Losers – Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons were ahead of the Chicago Bears 26-10 when the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game began. Chicago fought their way back to finish on top when Week 3 winner Nick Foles pulled off his heroics, but it was a very bad loss for the Falcons.
In Week 2, Atlanta blew a 29-10 halftime lead over the Dallas Cowboys, so this is the second consecutive collapse for the Falcons. When you snatch defeat from the jaws of victory two weeks in a row, you wind up getting dubious distinctions like this one.
Winners – Kansas City Chiefs
It was billed as a Monday night clash of the titans, a game for the ages…but it turned out to be a mismatch. The defending Super Bowl Champions from Kansas City outclassed the Baltimore Ravens 34-20, and Patrick Mahomes made it look easy.
The Ravens defense had no answers for Andy Reid’s creative play calling, and Mahomes executed the game plan to perfection. On the defensive side of the ball, the Chiefs pretty much eliminated the Ravens passing game and they kept the ground game manageable.
I know that it’s too early to make this kind of statement, but I’ll do it anyway: The Chiefs may be even better than they were a year ago, and that should scare the rest of the NFL.
These are a few of the winners and losers from NFL Week 3.
I’ll be back next week with my Week 4 observations, and in the meantime, you might like to visit our NFL betting picks section for our predictions for the upcoming games.