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NFL Week 5 overreactions: Cowboys’ Dak Prescott’s brutal harm stuns sports activities world
SportsPulse: The sports activities world watched in shock as Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott was carted off the sphere with a brutal ankle harm. Mackenzie Salmon reacts to that and all the most important storylines from Week 5 within the NFL.
The 32 issues we discovered from Week 5 of the 2020 NFL season:
1. Greatest story of Week 5: Washington QB Alex Smith. He performed soccer Sunday for the primary time in 693 days – the period of time that had handed because the horrific damaged leg he suffered Nov. 18, 2018, an harm that almost value Smith his life as a result of post-surgical infections and subsequent operations he endured. I’ve coated Smith just a few instances through the years, together with the 2005 draft – my first on the NFL beat – when he was the No. 1 general choice. He is at all times been unfailingly well mannered, stylish and insightful – whether or not in particular person or over the telephone. That features the time he took my name about getting changed by Colin Kaepernick within the 49ers’ lineup after Smith misplaced his job within the wake of a concussion regardless of his 6-2-1 report and 104.1 QB ranking. It is good to see good guys end first … even when the WFT and Smith suffered a beating from the Rams. Not less than he was in a position to stroll away from it.
1a. Smith was sacked six instances Sunday after changing injured Kyle Allen. Can we maintain this man just a bit higher, Washington guys?
2. Worst story of Week 5: Cowboys QB Dak Prescott. The compound ankle fracture he suffered Sunday did not initially seem fairly as unhealthy as Smith’s harm two years in the past. However, Prescott was hospitalized and scheduled to have surgical procedure for what gave the impression to be a really critical harm – one which left him in tears as he was carted from the AT&T Stadium turf. Since coming into the league in 2016, Prescott – he entered Sunday on tempo to shatter the league’s single-season report for passing yards – has by no means missed a recreation. This is hoping he makes a really speedy restoration … and nonetheless will get the contract he is earned in 2021 as soon as his franchise tag expires. As unhealthy as 2020 has been for all of us, not many have had a worse 12 months than Prescott, who misplaced his brother Jace to suicide in April.
2a. Hopeful signal: Prescott’s brother Tad tweeted from the hospital Sunday night, Dak smiling in a mattress beside him, that his sibling will “be again STRONGER than ever.” Let’s hope.
3. Second-worst story of Week 5: COVID-19. Whereas trying again on the first quarter of the 2020 season just a few days in the past, I famous what a pleasing shock it had been that the NFL and its gamers had, largely – and with out the advantage of a bubble – managed to maintain the coronavirus pandemic at bay given just one recreation by way of the primary 4 weeks needed to be postponed. Everybody – the league, the gamers, their households – nonetheless deserves copious credit score for that and the dangers they take whereas entertaining the remainder of us. However the previous week has been a stark reminder that COVID-19 cannot be taken without any consideration because it more and more impacts the league’s groups and schedule, together with the elimination of Broncos-Patriots from the Week 5 schedule.
3a. Let’s hope the NFL can use latest occasions as a teachable second whereas attempting to avert a league-wide breakout of the virus. Nonetheless, with NFL HQ now furiously transferring video games across the calendar in an effort to guard the integrity of the 17-week common season, it is price questioning how for much longer a schedule teetering like a Jenga tower can survive.
3b. In case you need assistance monitoring the widespread adjustments the league introduced, right here they’re (sorted by group):
► Payments: Host Chiefs Oct. 19 as an alternative of Oct. 15.
► Broncos: Bye strikes from Week 8 to Week 5, at Patriots in Week 6, host Chargers in Week 8, host Dolphins in Week 11.
► Chargers: Bye strikes from Week 10 to Week 6, host Jaguars in Week 7, at Broncos in Week 8, at Dolphins in Week 10, host Jets in Week 11.
► Chiefs: At Payments Oct. 19 as an alternative of Oct. 15.
► Dolphins: Host Jets in Week 6, bye strikes from Week 11 to Week 7, host Chargers in Week 10, at Broncos in Week 11.
► Jaguars: At Chargers in Week 7, bye strikes from Week 7 to Week 8.
► Jets: At Dolphins in Week 6, bye strikes from Week 11 to Week 10, at Chargers in Week 11.
► Patriots: Bye strikes from Week 6 to Week 5, host Broncos in Week 6.
4. Participant of Week 5? Increase your hand for those who predicted it will be rookie Steelers WR Chase Claypool (good, no arms). The second-rounder from Notre Dame – he ran a 4.4-second 40-yard sprint on the scouting mix regardless of his 6-4, 229-pound body (Claypool is listed at 238 now) – had a breakout efficiency in opposition to the Eagles with 116 yards from scrimmage and 4 TDs, the primary Pittsburgh participant to seek out the tip zone 4 instances in a recreation since … Roy Jefferson in 1968. Claypool turned the third rookie extensive receiver to attain 4 instances in a recreation and first since Buffalo’s Jerry Butler in 1979. Claypool was the first Steelers rookie with a receiving and dashing TD in the identical recreation since … Franco Harris in 1972. Guessing he will not be getting many extra questions on doubtlessly switching to tight finish.
5. Via Sunday’s video games, residence groups have been 38-36-1 this season.
6. After beating the Colts, the Browns are 4-1 for the primary time since 1994 … when Invoice Belichick was their coach.
6a. Should you did not assume Cleveland was for actual, take into account the 32 factors and 385 yards the Browns held on Indianapolis have been probably the most the Colts’ top-ranked protection had surrendered in both class this season.
7. The Seahawks improved to 5-0 for the primary time in franchise historical past Sunday night time, turning into the primary 5-0 group of 2020. Buffalo may be a part of them Tuesday.
7a. Seattle’s Russell Wilson threw three extra TD passes, giving him 19 for the season and placing him on tempo for a report 61. #VoteRuss2020.
8. The Steelers are 4-0 for the primary time since 1979 (and likewise pulled it off in 1978). They received the Tremendous Bowl in each these years.
9. The Bears are 4-1 for the primary time since 2012. They missed the playoffs that 12 months.
10. Tom Brady was 5-0 in opposition to Chicago whereas he was in New England. He is now 0-1 in a Tampa Bay uniform.
10a. Bears QB Nick Foles is 2-0 in opposition to Brady after Thursday’s triumph. That different win got here in Tremendous Bowl LII, when Foles was the sport’s MVP. Thursday marked the primary time that two quarterbacks who met in a Tremendous Bowl confronted off once more in numerous uniforms.
11. RB David Montgomery scored the Bears first dashing TD of 2020, making them the ultimate group to attain on the bottom. Subsequent? Chicago is in search of its first factors within the third quarter, the one time nonetheless shut out in that interval this season.
12. Seems to be just like the Raiders have hit on the correct method because it pertains to competing with the reigning champion Chiefs: Load up by yourself weapons relatively than attempt to comprise Kansas Metropolis defensively. Las Vegas, with its array of offensive skills, outgained Ok.C. 490-413 in Sunday’s 40-32 upset. Two of the Raiders’ latest first-round picks – RB Josh Jacobs (2019) and WR Henry Ruggs (2020), each from Alabama – mixed for 203 yards and three TDs at Arrowhead.
12a. However give the Las Vegas D credit score it is not often earned this 12 months after it restricted the Chiefs to eight second-half factors.
13. Possibly Kansas Metropolis’s sudden setback should not come as a complete shock given the calendar now reads October. QB Patrick Mahomes is 10-0 with 32 TD passes and nil INTs in September however 6-4 (22 TDs, 8 INTs) in October.
13a. In 15 video games in opposition to AFC West foes, this was solely Mahomes’ second defeat.
14. The Chiefs’ league-best 13-game profitable streak, together with playoffs, was snapped.
15. The 101-yard kickoff return for a TD by the Colts’ Isaiah Rodgers is the longest play within the league this season.
16. The Panthers are in some way undefeated (3-0) with out All-Professional RB Christian McCaffrey. Exceptional, if unheralded, begin by rookie coach Matt Rhule and Co.
17. The Falcons are 0-5 for the primary time since 1997. Dan Quinn and GM Thomas Dimitroff received loads of rope whereas attempting to make this work … however reducing the twine now could be merciful.
18. Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald, a close to surefire first-ballot Corridor of Famer, is on tempo for 394 receiving yard this season. His lowest output in his first 16 seasons was 734 yards in 2018.
18a. Cardinals OLB Chandler Jones, maybe a Corridor of Famer sooner or later, is on tempo for one sack this season … as a result of his season is over, per experiences, after he suffered a torn biceps Sunday.
19. Bucs WR Mike Evans, Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill and Vikings RB Dalvin Cook dinner have scored touchdowns in each video games this season.
20. Pittsburgh > Philadelphia (we hear voting is an enormous difficulty in Pennsylvania, so good to at the least see this debate settled).
21. The Rams went 4-0 in opposition to the NFC East this 12 months. We might suggest relocating to Raleigh … as a result of “Raleigh Rams” sounds good, they usually may run this division for the following decade.
22. The 49ers are 0-3 at residence this season however 2-0 in New York (technically New Jersey). Just like the Rams … go east, younger males.
23. As I attempt to keep away from offending Payments Mafia (once more), “Downstate New York’s” two groups, the Jets and Giants are a mixed 0-10 for the primary time. Possibly they need to transfer to the West Coast.
24. Trying ahead to some Tuesday night time soccer and watching your group, Payments followers. Assuming the sport is definitely performed, Buffalo-Tennessee would be the solely Week 5 contest that includes two unbeaten squads.
25. Dolphins Ok Jason Sanders 19, San Francisco 17.
26. Miami scored as many as 43 factors for under the third time within the final quarter century, and the group’s first such incidence since 2015.
27. Congratulations to Texans interim boss Romeo Crennel. At 73, he surpassed Corridor of Famer George Halas because the oldest coach in league historical past. Houston, which fired coach/GM Invoice O’Brien final week, responded Sunday with its first win of the season, a 30-14 drubbing of Jacksonville.
28. Washington gained 108 yards (simply 2.1 per play) Sunday, the ninth-fewest for one group up to now decade.
29. Bengals QB Joe Burrow (183 passing yards, INT) regarded like a rookie for the primary time this season in Cincinnati’s 27-3 loss at Baltimore. Burrow was totally upstaged by Ravens rookie LB Patrick Queen, his former LSU teammate, who completed with a game-high 9 tackles, a 53-yard rating off a fumble return and a sack of Burrow. Queen stated previous to the sport that the aggressive duo typically had a heated relationship whereas competing for the Bayou Bengals.
30. The Ravens have rushed for at the least 100 yards in 28 consecutive regular-season video games. Solely three groups because the 1970 merger have had an extended run.
31. All-galaxy Rams DL Aaron Donald notched the second four-sack recreation of his profession Sunday … a fairly impolite option to welcome Smith again to the gridiron. Quadruple-team that man, Washington?
31a. Value noting that Donald’s teammate, LB Troy Reeder, collected the primary three sacks of his profession. They’re simply the fifth pair of teammates to mix for at the least three apiece since 1982, when sacks turned an official NFL statistic.
32. If the season ended at this time – it would not – the Raiders and Panthers would turn into the first-ever No. 7 seeds within the new 14-team playoff bracket.
Observe USA TODAY Sports activities’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis
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