Sunday’s NFL Week 10 action saw some very good performances. It also saw disastrous outings from multiple below-average teams.
That included the New England Patriots opening the day in Germany by putting up six points in a 10-6 loss to the Indianapolis Colts. The afternoon late also saw the Los Angeles Chargers’ defense struggle big time in a loss to the Detroit Lions.
On the other end of the spectrum, the San Francisco 49ers ended their three-game losing streak by dominating the Jaguars in Jacksonville by the score of 34-3. Meanwhile, the conference rival Dallas Cowboys laid into a bad New York Giants team. These are among the biggest winners and losers from Sunday’s NFL Week 10 action.
Winner: Brock Purdy returns to glory
A lot was made of Purdy’s struggles during San Francisco’s three-game losing streak ahead of its Week 9 bye. The sophomore signal caller had thrown five interceptions during that span after not being picked off during the 49ers’ five-game winning streak to open the season.
Apparently, getting a week off was the tonic that Purdy needed. He was absolutely brilliant in San Francisco’s blowout 34-3 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in NFL Week 10. That included Purdy completing 19-of-26 passes for 296 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions. The dude was on a roll with the rest of his team.
Now, through his first nine starts as a sophomore, Purdy is on pace for 4,400 passing yards to go with 28 touchdowns and nine interceptions. That seems pretty darn good.
Loser: Los Angeles Chargers’ Brandon Staley must be on hot seat
One week after this unit held the New York Jets to a mere six points, the Chargers’ defense was back up to its old tricks at home against the Detroit Lions on Sunday.
Los Angeles yielded a whopping 23 first downs and 533 yards of offense. Detroit’s rushing attack went for 200 yards on 31 attempts, including a 75-yard touchdown from David Montgomery.
By virtue of this 41-38 loss to Detroit, the Chargers find themselves at a pedestrian 4-5 and out of the AFC Playoff picture right now. They are also giving up 24 points per game. As a defensive-minded head coach, Staley is the most to blame for this. Will it lead to his seat getting hotter?
Winner: Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys roll Big Blue
Dallas found itself as 17.5-point home favorites against the Giants in NFL Week 10. It made sense given New York’s injury issues at quarterback with Daniel Jones (ACL) and Tyrod Taylor (ribs) sidelined. Tommy DeVito didn’t stand much of a chance in their stead.
But this is why you play the game. After shutting out New York 40-0 on the opener, the ‘Boys were back at it Sunday. They won by the score of 49-17 with Dak Prescott going off for north of 400 yards and four touchdowns.
When all was said and done, Dallas had tallied 32 first downs and 640 total yards of offense. Brandin Cooks (nine receptions, 173 yards) ad CeeDee Lamb (11 receptions for 151 yards) were dynamite. Meanwhile, Dallas’ vaunted defense held the Giants to a mere 172 total yards. Heck, the Cowboys had more points at halftime (28) than the Giants had total yards (27). Talk about utter domination.
Loser: Jordan Love, mistake waiting to happen
Love and the Packers ended their four-game skid last week, defeating the Los Angeles Rams by the score of 20-3. The hope was that they had turned the corner. Unfortunately, this wasn’t close to the story during NFL Week 10.
Love threw two more interceptions in the 23-19 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Both came late in the game and with Green Bay driving inside Pittsburgh’s 20-yard line.
That’s just a brutal way to go down. It’s also the continuation of major turnover issues on the part of Love this season. Over the course of the past six games (five losses), the youngster has turned the ball over a whopping nine times. That’s not putting your team in position to win.
Winner: C.J. Stroud has the “it” factor
How good was Stroud in Houston’s upset win over the Cincinnati Bengals during NFL Week 10? The rookie from Ohio State completed 23-of-39 passes for 356 yards with two total touchdowns and one interception. But it was all about his calm mentality as Houston drove down the field for the game-winning field goal.
That final drive saw Stroud complete 3-of-4 passes for 54 yards, including a 22-yard strike to Noah Brown with 14 seconds remaining to set up the winner.
What Stroud has done thus far this season is nothing short of extraordinary. Not only is he the hands-down Offensive Rookie of the Year, Stroud is making a statement to be in the NFL MVP conversation. He’s now 4-1 against winning teams this season. Just incredible.
Loser: Washington Commanders drop heartbreaker
Sam Howell connected with Dyami Brown on a 35-yard touchdown with 52 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter to tie things up against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.
That’s when Washington’s defense failed to step up with the game on the line. Geno Smith led Seattle down the field 50 yards on seven plays in just 52 seconds, culminating in a game-winning field goal from Jason Myers as time expired.
This loss is going to haunt head coach Ron Rivera and Co. Instead of moving to 5-5 on the season and remaining very much alive in the NFC Playoff race, Washington is 4-6 and likely just playing out the string. Just brutal.
Winner: Mike Evans leads Tampa Bay Buccaneers surge
Tampa Bay finds itself just a half game out of first place in the pedestrian NFC South after Sunday’s 20-6 win over the hapless Tennessee Titans. Said game was defined by big play after big play from future Hall of Fame wide receiver Mike Evans.
Despite dropping an easy touchdown Sunday, Evans was brilliant in acting the part of Baker Mayfield’s top target. He caught six passes for 149 yards with that touchdown. Even at 30 years old, Evans is showing no signs of slowing down.
Loser: Cincinnati Bengals defense comes up small
Cincinnati entered NFL Week 10 amid a four-game winning streak that saw its defense give up a total of 68 points. For some reason, this unit just did not have it against C.J. Stroud and the Houston Texans on Sunday.
The Bengals yielded 544 total yards of offense and 28 first downs in the 30-27 loss. It also came up small with the game on the line en route to allowing Houston to walk this one off with a field goal. Those 544 yards represent the most Cincinnati’s defense has given up since all the way back in September of 2019. Craziness.
Winner: Myles Garrett spearheads Browns latest win
Down 14-0 early Sunday against the division-rival Baltimore Ravens, things were not looking good for Myles Garrett and the Browns’ defense. That’s when they turned things around in a big way. This included a pick-six from Greg Newsome of Lamar Jackson with the game pretty much on the line in the fourth quarter.
Cleveland would go on to win the game by the score of 33-31 after Deshaun Watson led it down the field 58 yards, resulting in a Dustin Hopkins 40-yard field goal as time expired. Meanwhile, Garrett pressured Jackson six times while tallying 1.5 sacks as the Browns’ defense turned things around in the second half.
Loser: Mac Jones just isn’t it
Talk about another putrid performance from New England’s offense in an ugly 10-6 loss to the Indianapolis Colts during NFL Week 9. The team has now scored 10 points or less three times this season. Meanwhile, Mac Jones found himself benched for a third time this season. This time, after he threw pretty much a game-ending interception with the Pats driving for the potential lead.
“It was a terrible throw. Practiced it, hit it in practice, snugged the throw, and I knew where to go. I just didn’t do it. Didn’t do it right,” Jones said after NFL Week 10.
Head coach Bill Belichick would not commit to Jones as the starter for Week 12 against the New York Giants after the quarterback put up a miserable performance in front of fans in Germany.