1. Adrian Peterson Is Still The Best Running Back In The NFL

26 carries, 203 yards, a touchdown, 7.8 yards per carry.

Those were Adrian Peterson’s final numbers in yesterday’s game. At age 30, he leads the NFL in rushing yards with 961. He leads the NFL in rushes of 20 yards or longer. He leads the NFL in yards after contact. He basically leads the NFL in almost every rushing category this season.

He looks explosive, nimble, and younger than a typical 30-year-old running back. He’s the definitive leader of the 7-2 first place Minnesota Vikings. He is by far the best running back in the NFL, and it’s not even close. No matter the matchup, Adrian Peterson get’s the job done.

 

 

  1. The NFC East Is WIDE Open

Yesterday, with losses for the Giants and Eagles, the NFC East doesn’t have a team with a record above .500. The Giants, Eagles, and Redskins all have records of 4-5, while the Cowboys sit at 2-7, having lost seven straight.

The race for the NFC East crown is wide open. At times the Eagles, Giants, and Redskins have all looked like the best team in the division. Prior to this week, the Eagles looked like they were rolling, but after a disappointing loss to a bad Miami Dolphins team, I really don’t know what to think about them.

The Redskins held the Saints to 14 points yesterday. The same Saints team who had exploded over the last month, leading the NFL in points scored and total yards during that span.

The Giants continue to blow 4th quarter leads. Yesterday, they blew a 10 point 4th quarter lead to the Patriots. It was the third time this season the Giants blew a game due to poor clock management during the final two minutes. Yesterday, they had the ball in the red zone down by one point with 2:30 left in the game. They should have run out the clock, but instead, they decided to run three consecutive pass plays, leaving the Patriots enough time to drive down the field for a game winning field goal. Their poor clock management continues to fascinate me, as historically, the Giants have been a team relatively good at managing the clock in late game situations.

I have no idea who is going to win the NFC East. I will not be shocked if any of these teams, including the 2-7 Cowboys, win this division.

 

  1. The Jaguars Are The Colts’ Biggest Threat To Win The AFC South

At 3-6, the Jaguars are just one game behind the Colts for first place in the division. In my opinion, the Jaguars are much better than their record says they are. In four of their six losses they have outplayed their opponents. They have two dynamic receivers in Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns, a terrific gun slinging young quarterback in Blake Bortles and an emerging up incoming defense.

With an easy remaining schedule combined with the fact that Andrew Luck could be out anywhere from four to eight weeks, the Jaguars have a legitimate chance at winning the AFC South.

 

  1. I’m Convinced Ben Roethlisberger Is Part Cyborg

The guy wasn’t even supposed to play this week, but he still managed to come in for an injured Landry Jones and throw for 379 yards and three touchdowns. On top of that, Roethlisberger looked terrific in the pocket. He was elusive, avoiding the Browns’ pass rushers and routinely made deep throws look easy.

A week ago, it looked Roethlisberger had blown out his foot (I’ve never seen a foot bend the way his foot did). A week later he’s torching the Browns secondary. Roethlisberger is unlike anything we have ever seen. He is by far the toughest quarterback we have ever seen play this game.

 

  1. It’s Time For Peyton Manning To Walkaway

5-20, 35 yards, four interceptions.

On a day in which we should have been celebrating the greatness of Peyton Manning we were left wondering, “Have we seen the last of Peyton Manning?”

Outside of one game against the Packers, Manning has been one of the worst quarterbacks in the league this season. He’s thrown at least one interception in every game this season. In five of those nine games, he’s thrown two or more interceptions. His touchdown to interception ratio through nine games is the worst since his rookie season, his throws look off, he looks tired, and he routinely makes mental mistakes that a year ago he wasn’t making.

After being benched yesterday, his backup, Brock Osweiler, threw for more yards in his first five attempts than Manning had all game. Now, I’m not saying that the Broncos should bench Manning if he is healthy enough to play (According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Manning has a torn plantar fascia in his foot) in favor of Osweiler, but I think it’s safe to say that after nine weeks, Manning is officially washed up, and because of that, the Broncos, even at 7-2 can kiss their championship aspirations good bye.

 

Sean Mason

Spark Sports NFL Analyst

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