Wednesday Morning QB (NFL Week 3)

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The hectic times in the NFL are far from over but this week things seemed to steer a little bit closer to football. More charges were revealed and the commissioner held a press conference to talk about how the league plans to deal with the accusations heading forward. There is no doubt that the NFL remains in a tough spot right now as they continue to deal with the off-field issues of players making stupid decisions. Despite all of the issues the NFL is dealing with the game still went on a Week 3 in the league continued. A lot of football is still left to play and the league is hoping that the focus continues to shift to the product on the field rather than the players off of it. The football is still getting better and as the league loves to point out the parity in the league is getting that much better. That wasn’t necessarily on display in the first game of the week as the NFL pitted two teams that seemed on opposite sides of the spectrum against each other. Still with any NFL game there are no guarantees and that is what the NFL was hoping for when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons faced off. That did not end up happening as the Bucs looked terrible out of the gate. The first quarter alone saw the Falcons earn 21 points that was only extended with a second quarter that added 14 more points to the total. All the while the Bucs offence got nothing and continued to stall under Josh McCown and Mike Glennon, who replaced an injured McCown in the first quarter. The Falcons, led by Matt Ryan, went off on the Bucs and their defence while Devin Hester broke Deion Sanders’ record for most return touchdowns in a career. The performance was almost flawless by the Falcons but the story was more about the lack of fight from the Bucs. In a league where any given Sunday is a sense of pride, the loss was a sign that the difference between teams may be bigger than some expect. The Bucs looked like they were simply outclassed in the Thursday night game and it was not a good thing for the league. More so than that it seemed to bring back some terrible memories for Tampa Bay fans. The game seemed to reflect the period of the Tampa Bay “Yucks” of the 1970s. That team could be considered one of the worst teams in the history of the NFL as they could not win for anything. As an expansion team they struggled to find the right combination of players and the right funds to make them a competitive team. They struggled to get anywhere close to other teams but eventually they turned the team around. Eventually the Bucs became one of the best teams in the league and won the Super Bowl. After years of being one of the best teams they began to fall to the bottom of the league. They never touched the lack of success of the forgotten era though until now. The game on Thursday to open the week brought that era to light once again as they look like the worst team in the league and are far separate from the other teams. Along with the Oakland Raiders and Jacksonville Jaguars they are the three winless teams left in the NFL. All three of them will desperately be seeking their first wins in the coming weeks but the performance of the Bucs can say a lot about the fact that they seem closer than the rest to joining the 1976 Bucs and the 2008 Detroit Lions as the only team to never win a game in a full season.

Fifth Quarter:
(Thoughts on Week 3 in the NFL)

Continuing to Adjust
Roger Goodell called a press conference this week to discuss the changes to code of conduct in the NFL and while many expected a lot of answers the press conference simply reiterated the usual as Goodell promised to work on the issues with no real fixes

Dangerous Celebration
It is not the first time but it is the latest time as Stephen Tulloch injured himself during his Week 3 game against the Green Bay Packers as he tore his ACL during a sack celebration that will now keep him out for the season

Harrison Returns
James Harrison has had his issues off of the field with domestic violence and with no team to go to this offseason he announced his retirement from the NFL but now with limited resources on defence the Pittsburgh Steelers have taken him back in a questionable decision


Key Scores:
Atlanta Falcons 56 – 14 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
– It was not a good game as the Falcons easily beat the Bucs while Devin Hester broke Deion Sanders’ record for most return touchdowns in a career and scored three touchdowns in total on the day to walk past the Bucs

Philadelphia Eagles 37 – 34 Washington
– The Eagles are continuing to develop into a very good team and a good offence that was originally promised last year and they got through Washington despite a great performance by Kirk Cousins in the loss and his first NFL start

Baltimore Ravens 23 – 21 Cleveland Browns
– The Cleveland Browns are a better team this year and they are showing it although the results aren’t there with the last second loss to the Ravens who kicked a field goal to get by the Browns in another close game

Seattle Seahawks 26 – 20 Denver Broncos (OT)
– The last time these two teams faced off it was not a pretty sight as the Seahawks dismantled the Broncos in the Super Bowl but this time it was a different story as the Broncos fought until the end tying the game in the final minute but losing in overtime

Next Week:
Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears (Sunday September 28th; 1:00 pm ET)
– The oldest rivalry in the NFL gets underway again as the Bears and the Packers face-off with the Packers offence struggling to get going and the Bears just looking to continue to stay at the top of the division

New York Giants vs. Washington (Thursday September 25th; 8:25 pm ET)
– The Giants continue to struggle this year and they must start to do something if they hope to avoid massive changes as they take on Washington with Kirk Cousins at the helm and showing that he has what it takes to play in the NFL

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (Sunday September 28th; 1:00 pm ET)
– The Bucs need to recover from the embarrassment of their Week 3 loss to the Falcons against the Steelers who do not look like their powerhouse teams of the past but are still going to be a challenge for the Bucs to beat

New Orleans Saints vs. Dallas Cowboys (Sunday September 28th; 8:30 pm ET)
– The Saints got their first win of the season in Week 3 and are hoping to continue the trend while the Cowboys recovered from a terrible Week 1 loss to prove that they are still a team to watch in the division

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