Monday Morning Quarterback: The Good, The Bad Of Week 8
Green Bay PackersMinnesota Vikings
Aaron Rodgers was once again superb. He was accurate from start to finish as he completed 24-of-29 passes for 285 yards with two TDs and he did not throw an interception.
Christian Ponder was much better than he has been in most of his recent starts, but the Vikings were not in this game in the second half. Ponder completed 14-of-21 passes for 145 yards and while he did not throw an interception, he was unable to throw any TD passes on a day when Adrian Peterson was held to 60 yards rushing.
Denver BroncosWashington Redskins
The Broncos were involved in a dogfight for three quarters before they exploded for 31 points in the fourth quarter. Peyton Manning threw three interceptions, but he completed 30-of-44 passes for 354 yards and four TDs.
Robert Griffin III had a tough game against the Broncos, completing 15-of-30 passes for 132 yards with one TD and two interceptions. He left the game with a knee injury (left), but it does not appear to be a serious injury.
Arizona CardinalsAtlanta Falcons
Carson Palmer has been troubled by interceptions throughout the year, but he avoided them against the Falcons. Palmer threw for 172 yards and he threw TD passes to Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd.
The disaster continues for the Falcons as they continue to lose winnable games. Much of that has to fall on Matt Ryan’s shoulders because the threw four interceptions against the aggressive Arizona secondary.
Oakland RaidersPittsburgh Steelers
Terrelle Pryor started the game with a bolt of lightning as he ran for a 93-yard TD early in the first quarter. While he did not have a great passing day – just 88 yards and he was intercepted twice – he gave the team the jolt it needed to beat the Steelers.
No matter what was said before or after the game, the Steelers were looking past the Raiders and ahead to next week’s game against the Patriots. Ben Roethlisberger threw just one TD while tossing two interceptions and that’s not enough.
Cincinnati BengalsNew York Jets
Andy Dalton came through with the kind of game that head coach Marvin Lewis has been looking for since the start of the season. Dalton threw five TD passes and just one interception as the Bengals dominated from the start.
Geno Smith was overmatched against an excellent team playing at the top of its game. Smith threw two interceptions that were both returned for touchdowns.
New York GiantsPhiladelphia Eagles
Eli Manning has had a miserable year, but he showed that his team can win when he doesn’t turn the ball over. Manning threw for 246 yards and he did not throw an interception. While it would have been nice if he could have thrown a TD pass, he refused to turn the ball over.
It’s turning out to be quite disastrous for Chip Kelly in his first year as head coach. He thought Michael Vick would be able to return to the lineup and contribute, but the quarterback suffered another hamstring injury. Rookie Matt Barkley did not throw an interception, but he could not lead his team against a vulnerable New York defense.
New Orleans SaintsBuffalo Bills
In a year dominated by Peyton Manning, Drew Brees had the quarterback performance of the day as he riddled the Bills’ secondary and threw five touchdown passes. Brees completed 26-of-34 passes for 332 yards.
Thad Lewis was under pressure from the hard hitting New Orleans defense. The Bills’ quarterback couldn’t handle it because he fumbled three times and also threw one interception. You can’t beat a team like the Saints at the Superdome when you can’t control the football.
New England PatriotsMiami Dolphins
After an ineffective first half, Tom Brady came on in the second half and led his team to 24 points in the third and fourth quarters. Brady got the Pats’ comeback started with his 14-yard TD pass to Aaron Dobson in the third quarter.
Ryan Tannehill had a good start as the Dolphins took a 14-point halftime lead. However, when the Patriots came with pressure in the second half, Tannehill lost his edge and threw two interceptions. Tannehill needs to find a way to hold up against a good team. He’s not there yet.
Cleveland BrownsKansas City Chiefs
A sharp game from Alex Smith, who completed 24-of-36 passes for 225 yards and two touchdowns. Once again, Smith did not make big mistakes as he did not throw an interception. Jason Campbell did an excellent job in the starting assignment for the Browns, throwing for 293 yards and two touchdowns.
The Chiefs won the game but they couldn’t put any distance on the lowly Browns. Smith might have wanted to push the ball downfield a bit more, but he is restrained in this offense. Still, it’s tough to argue with a perfect 8-0 record.
San Francisco 49ersJacksonville Jaguars
Colin Kaepernick is back on top of his game as he ran for two touchdowns and passed for another. While he threw for just 164 yards, he appears to be sharp and confident once again.
Chad Henne is not a bad quarterback and he had a decent game, completing 22-of-35 passes. However, that’s not enough when you play for a troubled team like the Jaguars. Jacksonville needed a heroic performance from its quarterback and Henne could not deliver.
Detroit LionsDallas Cowboys
Just one of the more remarkable games for the Lions as they were able to mount a desperation comeback that culminated with Matthew Stafford’s touchdown reach in the waning seconds. Stafford threw for 488 yards and took advantage of Calvin Johnson and the holes in the Dallas secondary.
A very strange day for Tony Romo, who threw three TD passes and was not intercepted once. However, he was not on top of his game in the first half and he completed just 14-of-30 passes.
Carolina PanthersTampa Bay Buccaneers
Cam Newton continues to play consistent football and the Panthers are becoming one of the most improved teams in the league. Newton completed 23-of-32 passes for 221 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. He also ran for 50 yards and a touchdown.
Mike Glennon tried to carry the Bucs offense and he completed 30-of-51 passes, but he just was not capable of making big plays against Carolina’s aggressive defense.