In an effort to avoid being "that guy," I will refrain from talking about the plethora of running backs that were injured early in their games, causing me much fantasy football consternation. Instead, we'll talk about the 'Boys bludgeoning, the Raiders reeling, and the Seahawks, well, sucking.
THE BLOWOUTS (Texans 41, Titans 7; Cowboys 34, Rams 7; Saints 62, Colts 7)
TRIUMPH: The Cowboys had rushed for just under 85 yards per game coming into this contest, for a total of 424 yards. They ran for 294 yards in this game, 253 of which came from rookie Demarco Murray. The Rams were bottom-five in the league in run defense heading into the game. Guess that wasn’t a statistical anomaly.
TRAGEDY: Arian Foster had more yards receiving (119) than he had rushing (115) in the Texans-Titans game. So did Chris Johnson – except he had 24 receiving yards. Wop wop wop.
TREND: Saints TE Jimmy Graham’s worst statistical (read: fantasy) game of this season was a six-catch, 79-yard performance against a Bears team whose defense is built to contain the big play. Absent a monstrous game that skews his statistics, he is legitimately on pace for 100 catches, 1500 yards, and 10 touchdowns.
TRAIL MIX: Murray’s 253 yards harkens me back to fellow Oklahoma alum Adrian Peterson’s record-breaking 296 yard performance in his rookie year. Also, while this is not surprising given the fact that each team was winning big, but the Texans, Cowboys, and Saints averaged 250 yards rushing.
CHIEFS 28, RAIDERS 0
TRIUMPH: Michael Bush ran 17 times for 99 yards (5.8 avg) after Darren McFadden left the game with an injury in the first quarter. Yes, Bush more than tripled any of his rushing totals this year, and he had two 100-yard games in McFadden’s absence last year, but this is DMC’s team. Don’t forget that.
TRAGEDY: The Raiders were in the bottom ten in the NFL in pass defense coming into the game, and Matt Cassel was coming out of a bye after a 4-TD game in Week 5. Not surprisingly, Cassel threw all over the lot … oh, he didn’t? What, only 2 TD? No? Then, what’d he – no touchdowns, 2 interceptions, and less than 6 yards per attempt, huh? Odd.
TREND: Darrius Heyward-Bey, much maligned due to his disappointing first two years in the league after being drafted 7th overall, has caught at least four passes for at least 80 yards in each of the last four games. This is a noticeable trend, considering he had either caught four passes or had 80 yards receiving just three times in his first two seasons.
TRAIL MIX: Twenty-four teams played in games on Sunday. Eight quarterbacks played in those games who do not have a full season of NFL starting experience (John Beck, Kevin Kolb, Cam Newton, Christian Ponder, Matt Moore, Tim Tebow, Charlie Whitehurst, Curtis Painter). Those players threw a combined 6 interceptions. The Raiders had two quarterbacks play in this game, Kyle Boller and Carson Palmer, who had combined for ten seasons’ worth of game experience. They threw 6 interceptions.
BROWNS 6, SEAHAWKS 3
TRIUMPH: Kudos to Browns kicker Phil Dawson for making two 50+ yard field goals. Yeah, that’s pretty much the only triumph in this game.
TRAGEDY: Aside from the final score, I would say that the tragedy (at least for fantasy owners) was Marshawn Lynch hurting his back in warmups and missing the game without anyone outside the stadium knowing about it until the game had already started. Maybe he could have gone into Beast Mode and gotten the ‘Hawks another couple field goals to win the game.
TREND: Opponents have run against the Seahawks 33 times per game this season (4th most in the league). The Seahawks have allowed 3.2 yards per carry this season (best in the league). Think you might want to start passing on them?
TRAIL MIX: The Cleveland Browns (3-3) have a better record than the Philadelphia Eagles (2-4), despite being in the bottom ten in the league in passing and rushing. Their secret? Their wins have come against teams who are a combined 2-17. The Eagles’ losses have come against teams who are a combined 17-8.