The effects of a lockout promised some unpredictable results and that is exactly what week 3 brought us as elite teams like the New England Patriots and New York Jets stumbled and last season's poor teams like the Buffalo Bills and Detroit Lions stayed undefeated for the season. Check out this week's results!
Buffalo Bills 34 defeated New England Patriots 31 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4BSjE3zZuE Quick Analysis: The Patriots started this game like they have been all season, quickly putting up 21 unanswered points. However, at 21-7, you knew this was just going to be an odd day when, as the Patriots drove into the Bills red zone to further add to their lead, QB Tom Brady threw a regulation pass to RB Danny Woodhead which landed right in the arms of the DB Bryan Scott. Brady went on to throw four interceptions for the day, the final one off another tipped pass which was returned for a touchdown that gave the Bills the lead. Player of the Game: Drayton Florence (Bills). Comes up with the big interception in the final quarter and returns it for a score giving the Bills their first win over the Patriots since 2003.
Carolina Panthers 16 defeated Jacksonville Jaguars 10 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gw-FEjSYc_c Quick Analysis: Rookie QB Cam Newton didn't stun anybody with his stats from this game, but he will accept 158 passing yards and 1 TD every game if it means a win. His opposite number, Blaine Gabbert sparked a strong second quarter from the Jaguars, but it was not enough to prevent Newton from achieving his first NFL win. Player of the Game: Greg Hardy (Panthers). He was constantly pressuring the rooke Gabbert recording a sack in the win.
San Francisco 49ers 13 defeated Cincinnati Bengals 8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_Q4P-rldMg Quick Analysis: A dour contest in Cincinatti gave the 49ers their second win of the season. The teams were locked at 3-3 at the end of the third quarter, before the 49ers finally recorded a touchdown thanks to RB Kendall Hunter. Player of the Game: NaVorro Bowman (49ers). Got through a lot of work in this one registering 7 tackles and assisting on 4 more.
Cleveland Browns 17 defeated Miami Dolphins 16 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55wCaF0sFUY Quick Analysis: The Dolphins finally got to leave Miami, but they still couldn't pick up the win despite leading by 6 in the final minute of the game. The Dolphins' inability to find the end zone hurt them in the end as they had to settle for 3 FGs. Browns' QB Colt McCoy made just enough big plays in the final quarter to steer his side to victory. Player of the Game: Colt McCoy (Browns) threw for 210 yards and 2 touchdowns but was most impressive on the team's final drive which went 80 yards to give the Browns the lead with 43 seconds remaining.
Detroit Lions 26 defeated Minnesota Vikings 23 (OT) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxyYsnYJu1I Quick Analysis: Football seemed to be returning to normality as the Vikings went into the halftime sheds up (sheds up? - editor Dom) 20-0 against the perennially poor Lions, but this new Lions team didn't fold. QB Matt Stafford steadied the ship in the second half finding receiver Calvin Johnson twice for touchdowns to send the game into overtime. A 40 yard completion to Johnson in overtime set up Jason Hanson's FG to keep the Lions undefeated. Player of the Game: Calvin Johnson (Lions). Provided a target for Stafford to hit and did his job when the ball came his way.
New Orleans Saints 40 defeated Houston Texans 33 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEnjG_k68W8 Quick Analysis: The Texans' offense had no problems moving the ball throughout the game giving Houston a 2 point lead going into the last quarter. However, they had to settle for 4 FGs over the duration of the match, nor could they stop Drew Brees and the Saints' attack as New Orleans came back to win the high-scoring encounter. Player of the Game: Drew Brees (Saints). Although Brees threw 2 interceptions, his three TDs were the difference between the two sides.
New York Giants 29 defeated Philadelphia Eagles 16 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5xnN4pcQtI Quick Analysis: The Giants started quickly to lead 14-0 at the end of the first, but had surrendered the lead to the Eagles by the end of the third quarter. The Eagles looked likely for their second win of the season before QB Michael Vick went down with a hand injury. The Giants capitalised on the Eagles' misfortune by scoring two more touchdowns in the final quarter. Player of the Game: Eli Manning (Giants). The passing yards won't blow you away, but his 4 TDs gave the Giants the big win over their divisional rivals.
Tennessee Titans 17 defeated Denver Broncos 14 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6aVlzGDedI Quick Analysis: A 10 point second quarter from the Tennessee Titans was enough to overcome the loss of WR Kenny Britt and hang on for the win. The Broncos actually led going into the final quarter, but Titans' QB Matt Hasselbeck found TE Daniel Graham in the final minutes to keep the Titans equal first in the AFC South. Player of the Game: Nate Washington (Titans). Stepped up in the absence of Britt to score a TD and finish with 92 receiving yards.
Oakland Raiders 34 defeated New York Jets 24 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhEJjlX18Ko Quick Analysis: The Oakland Raiders were playing the part of a pesky team that you knew the Jets would eventually defeat. However, the longer the game went, and the longer the Raiders hung around, the better they became. At 17-17, late in the third quarter, the Raiders surprised the Jets with Denarius Moore's 23 yard WR reverse touchdown and then pounded another one in 43 seconds later to stun the fancied Jets. Player of the Game: Darren McFadden (Raiders). Huge game against the Jets' renowned defence - 171 rushing yards and 2 TDs.
San Diego Chargers 20 defeated Kansas City Chiefs 17 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzFmZQxjwdE Quick Analysis: What should have been a comfortable win for the explosive Chargers turned into a nailbiter as the winless Chiefs fought back from a 10 point deficit to get within a FG of their divisional rivals. The Chargers' defence came up with the big interception on the Chiefs' final drive to hang on for the unimpressive win. Player of the Game: Ryan Matthews (Chargers). Popped up everywhere as he rushed for 98 yards, scored 2 TDs and had four receptions to top it off.
Baltimore Ravens 37 defeated St Louis Rams 7 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEwzx0ZYt-A Quick Analysis: Possibly the only game to go to script saw QB Joe Flacco throw three TDs to rookie receiver Torrey Smith in the first quarter which blew the winless Rams out of the game. The Rams finally picked up a touchdown in the third quarter, but this was not nearly enough to get within striking distance of the Ravens. Player of the Game: Torrey Smith (Ravens). The rookie must think this NFL thing is pretty easy after his first three receptions ever were all touchdowns.
Green Bay Packers 27 defeated Chicago Bears 17 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAU9aI1HZyg Quick Analysis: Packers' QB Aaron Rodgers has been unstoppable in the first quarter of games this season and it was that explosive start that was the difference between the two sides. The Bears really matched the Packers through the remaining quarters, but couldn't quite overcome the start by the Packers nor disrupt Rodgers' chemistry with TE Jermichael Finley who scored three TDs on the night. Player of the Game: Morgan Burnett (Packers). Made a couple of really good defensive plays at Safety and picked up two interceptions.
Seattle Seahawks 13 defeated Arizona Cardinals 10 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPuA6NofXhk Quick Analysis: Neither of these sides put up points like the Patriots or Bills, but Cardinals' QB Kevin Kolb made a highlight touchdown pass in the second quarter when he scrambled out of the pocket and fired a pass for receiver Larry Fitzgerald who completed the score. This was as good as it got for the Cardinals who failed to hold out the Seahawks' QB Tarvaris Jackson when he ran into the end zone to give the Seahawks the lead in the third quarter. Player of the Game: Leroy Hill (Seahawks). 8 tackles and a sack as the defence hold the Cardinals to 10 points.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 16 Atlanta Falcons 13 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0nUhAwzy5E Quick Analysis: The Buccaneers jumped out to an early lead as QB Josh Freeman rushed for a touchdown in the second quarter, but it was the defence that really rattled the rival Falcons. Tampa Bay forced 3 turnovers and sacked Matt Ryan 4 times on the night and then held off the fourth quarter comeback by 'Matty Ice' to move ahead of the Falcons in the NFC South. Player of the Game: Adrian Clayborn (Buccaneers). Recorded one of the aforementioned sacks, forcing a fumble.
Pittsburgh Steelers 23 defeated Indianapolis Colts 20 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnwwxasVYb8 Quick Analysis: Continuing the wacky trend of the weekend, the Colts, through great pressure by DEs Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney, somehow found themselves in front of the out-of-sorts Steelers. The Steelers continued to make mistakes in the second half, but eventually the Colts lack of production out of QB caught up with them as the Steelers finally took back the lead on Troy Polamalu's touchdown from a fumble. The game had one more twist in it as the Curtis Painter drove his side down for an equalizing score in the final minutes of the game, but the Steelers held their nerve to set up the game winning FG as time expired. Player of the Game: Dwight Freeney & Robert Mathis. The two DEs combine for 3 sacks as they do all they can in the absence of Peyton Manning to put the Colts in a position to win.
Dallas Cowboys 18 defeated Washington Redskins 16 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETsmj-dWkho Quick Analysis: A day for the kickers saw 9 FGs kicked in Monday Night Football. The sides kicked 3 FGs each in the first half before the Redskins decided to do something different and score a touchdown in the third quarter, but it wasn't quite enough for the previously undefeated Redskins as Cowboys' kicker Dan Bailey nailed a 40 yarder in the final two minutes to give the Cowboys the win. Player of the Game: Dan Bailey (Cowboys). Kickers don't usually get much recognition, but this is why they are important as he scores all the Cowboys points without missing a shot.