The New England Patriots’ worst home loss of the Bill Belichick era. Statement wins by both the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns. Sunday’s Week 7 NFL action provided us with a whole heck of a lot to look at.
The day concluded with the Arizona Cardinals coming out on top over the Seattle Seahawks in an epic NFC West battle. It also included America’s Team with another brutal performance under an embattled first-year head coach.
These are among the top takeaways from Sunday’s Week 7 NFL action.
NFL Week 7: Dallas Cowboys prove to be a lost cause
The writing should have been on the wall heading into Week 7. Dallas found itself with an even spread against a Washington Football Team that had lost five consecutive outings. Once Dak Prescott went down with a season-ending injury, it became apparent that any hopes of contention were overblown in Big D.
That came out in droves during Sunday’s Week 7 NFL action. A lifeless Cowboys team dropped the outing by the score of 25-3. Andy Dalton went down to injury after a brutal hit from Washington linebacker Jon Bostic. Towards the end of the game, Cowboys players were seen shoving one another on the field.
At 2-5 on the season, Dallas might be only a half game behind Philadelphia in the NFC East. With that said, Mike McCarthy and Co. are completely toast. It should lead to speculation about McCarthy’s future in Dallas following the 2020 season. Heck, unnamed players are already speaking out against him publicly.
NFL Week 7: Aaron Rodgers’ rebound performance in Packers win
Aaron Rodgers entered last week’s game against the Buccaneers having thrown a total of six interceptions since the end of the 2017 season. That’s why it was so shocking to see the MVP candidate struggle by throwing two interceptions in a blowout 38-10 loss. Taking on a bad Houston Texans team in Week 7, Rodgers had a chance to turn it around big time.
Boy, did he. The future Hall of Fame quarterback completed 23-of-34 passes for 283 yards with four touchdowns and zero interceptions in a blowout 35-20 win. A total of 13 of those completions went to stud receiver Davante Adams, who finished the afternoon with nearly 200 yards and two touchdowns. Minus that one bad performance against Tampa Bay, Rodgers and these Packers look legit. Sunday’s win over Houston is just the latest example of this.
Related: NFL Week 8 schedule, predictions
NFL Week 7: Bills’ ugly win raises more questions than answers
Josh Allen and the Bills started the 2020 NFL season by winning four consecutive games. The third-year quarterback looked like a legit MVP candidate. Then, something changed. Buffalo headed into Sunday’s game against the hapless New York Jets having lost two consecutive outings. That span saw Buffalo’s previously stout defense give up 139 and 245 rushing yards, respectively.
Sunday’s game against the Jets was more about the Bills’ inability to get into the end zone. Buffalo scored six times, all field goals, in an ugly 18-10 win. New York showed itself to be competitive for pretty much the first time all season. Ageless wonder Frank Gore averaged 5.5 yards per attempt. More than anything, that has to be what’s troublesome for Sean McDermott’s squad with games coming up against the Patriots, Seahawks and Cardinals ahead of a Week 11 bye.
NFL Week 7: San Francisco 49ers appear to be back
Following Week 5’s blowout loss to the Miami Dolphins, questions were rightfully raised about the defending NFC champs. Dealing with a plethora of injuries, the 49ers stood at 2-3 on the season and were facing a brutal seven-game stretch. Then, like clockwork, Jimmy Garoppolo and Co. came to play big time in an upset win over the Los Angeles Rams in Week 6.
As road underdogs against the Patriots Sunday afternoon, the 49ers took it to New England by the score of 33-6. It represented the most-lopsided home defeat of Bill Belichick’s tenure with the Patriots. All said, San Francisco outgained its opponent, 467-241. Sure injuries remain a major theme in Northern California. In no way does that mean we should discount the 49ers heading into a huge Week 8 outing with the Seahawks. They remain very much in the conference title conversation heading into the midway point of the season.
NFL Week 7: Statement win for the Pittsburgh Steelers
Ben Roethlisberger threw three interceptions. Pittsburgh almost blew a 27-7 lead against what was then an undefeated Tennessee Titans team in the game of Week 7. When all was said and done, the Steelers came out with a narrow 27-24 in Nashville.
This wasn’t the prettiest affair for Mike Tomlin’s squad. The team committed eight penalties and turned the ball over three times. Despite this, the Steelers were able to move to 6-0 on the season. That’s primarily because the new iteration of the Steel Curtain pressured Ryan Tannehill to the tune of six quarterback hits. These Steelers are loaded on both sides of the ball. They will be heard from in the AFC moving forward. Sunday’s less-than-perfect performance adds a new dimension to this.
NFL Week 7: Signature moment from Baker Mayfield?
His Cleveland Browns were down 34-31 with just over a minute left against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. Mayfield got the ball at Cleveland’s 25-yard line after a touchback. Could he lead the Browns to a huge victory without injured star receiver Odell Beckham Jr.?
It was early in the game that OBJ suffered what now appears to be a serious knee injury on a play that resulted in an interception. Mayfield started the afternoon 0-for-5 passing. What followed could very well end up being a defining moment for the embattled signal caller.
Mayfield completed 4-of-5 passes on that final drive, including a game-winning 24-yard touchdown to rookie receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones. He did so without both Beckham and injured stud running back Nick Chubb. Now at 5-2 on the season, the Browns are off to their best start since 1994. Mayfield himself was not even born then.
NFL Week 7: Seattle Seahawks’ impressively bad loss
Russell Wilson and Co. headed into Sunday night’s Week 7 contest with the Arizona Cardinals at 5-0. Wilson himself has been playing at an MVP level en route to leading Seattle to nearly 34 points per game. Unfortunately, the Seahawks’ defense was also giving up 27 points per game. This led directly to four consecutive one-score victories.
That was, once again, the case Sunday night. Seattle put up 572 total yards of offense and 33 first downs. However, the team’s defense couldn’t be bothered to stop Kyler Murray. Meanwhile, Wilson threw a shocking three interceptions. That included pretty much the game-ending pick in overtime, leading directly to a Cardinals walk-off 37-34 win.
At this point, we really do have to wonder whether Seattle’s defense will be a detriment to the team’s hopes of winning the NFC. This unit gave up 31 first downs and 519 total yards of offense. Add in Wilson’s turnover issues, and it led to the Seahawks’ first loss of the season. A brutal loss at that.
NFL Week 7: These aren’t the same old New England Patriots
When Cam Newton led New England to a Week 1 win over Miami in his debut with the team, a narrative was thrown our way. Regardless of who is under center with the Patriots, Bill Belichick will continue to field a winning team. In the five games since, that has proven to be a false narrative. New England has actually lost four of five following a brutal 27-point defeat at the hands of the 49ers in Week 7.
Newton has now thrown five interceptions against zero touchdowns since returning from COVID-19. All said, Patriots’ quarterbacks have tallied three passing scores compared to 11 interceptions in six games this season. It has the team on the brink of irrelevance heading into a huge Week 8 date with the AFC East-leading Buffalo Bills. Will Belichick have an answer?