It’s Week Four so of course it’s time for the NFL to start getting weird. Even before 1 PM, we had confusion as to who was actually starting at quarterback for multiple teams and a cartoon football game in London. Then the games actually kicked off and all hell broke loose. As always, we’re here with a couple of takeaways from the weekend action to try to help make sense of it all. Here are five hot takes for you fresh off the presses!
Bill Belichick Is On The Hotseat
The Patriots have a huge problem here. They have a legendary and revered coach that would be incredibly difficult to fire. But that might be what they need to do - not to win more games, but to lose them. Bill Belichick is a good enough coach that he can win games vs. rookie QBs and backup QBs which is all he has done as of late (as Chad Graff points out, his last three wins have come against Colt McCoy, Teddy Bridgewater/Skyler Thompson, and Zach Wilson). That’s not helping anyone. This team honestly needs to tank and tank hard to get a shot at a potential franchise QB like Caleb Williams or Drake Maye because it’s become fairly clear that Mac Jones just isn’t it. And that just might not in Bill Belichick’s DNA.
De’Von Achane Is No Fluke
One game can be a fluke. Jonas Gray once had four touchdowns in a game against the Colts then was released a few games later. So there was always the possibility that the four touchdown game for Achane in Week Three against the Denver Broncos was an anomaly. Achane came out fairly quickly this week to show that is not the case as he ran for over 100 yards and two scores while also catching three of five targets.
Plus, this was in a game where the Dolphins offense struggled in a 48-20 loss to the Bills. With his explosive speed, Achane doesn’t need every carry to deliver devastating results and he’s looking like a guy that needs to be in your lineup every week.
C.J. Stroud Is A Franchise Quarterback
I know it’s early but I have personally seen enough. The Texans as a whole might not be ready to compete for a championship right now but I believe they have found the guy that’s going to lead them when that time comes. The stats back it up through four games as Stroud has thrown for 1,212 yards, six touchdowns, and no interceptions with a quarterback rating of 100.6. And the film backs it up with seemingly effortless throws like this touchdown pass to Nico Collins from yesterday’s game. Texans fans have to be feeling pretty good about their second overall pick.
The Broncos Defense Is Historically Bad
And that’s true no matter how you look at it. They have failed the eye test every step of the way. They are obviously getting crushed in the box score - I mean, they let up 70 points last week. Statistically, it’s not much better as quarterbacks in back-to-back weeks now have started the games completing their first SIXTEEN passes. Plus, the advanced metrics, like DVOA, suggest they have had the worst four-game start of any defense ever. I’m not sure if the return of safety Justin Simmons is going to turn all that around so this is a team we should be targeting in DFS on a weekly basis.
Joe Burrow Is Not Okay
Derrick Henry threw a touchdown pass yesterday. Devin Singletary threw a touchdown pass yesterday. Joe Burrow did not. And, if you are a Bengals fan, you almost have to HOPE that it’s the calf injury that is causing him to struggle. Because it’s an even worse problem if it’s not. Outside of Week Two, he has struggled to get the ball to Tee Higgins in any meaningful way. And Ja’Marr Chase told reporters that he is always open, so clearly, he thinks the quarterback should be sending the ball his way. The problem now is that the team is 1-3 so the idea of letting Burrow take a week off to rest up is likely out the window at this point. They can’t afford to lose too many more games.