NFL - Winners and Losers from Week 7

Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers passes the ball in the second half of the game against the Carolina Panthers at Lambeau Field on October 19, 2014 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Panthers 38 to 17. (October 18, 2014, Source: Joe Robbins/Getty Images North America)

Sammy Watkins

The rookie saved the Buffalo Bills with his last-second touchdown against the Minnesota Vikings. Watkins caught 9 passes for 122 yards and 2 touchdowns as the Bills won 17-16.

Ryan Tannehill

Miami’s signal caller had one of the best games of his career. He completed 25 of 32 passes for 277 yards, 2 touchdowns and a passer rating of 123.6, leading the Dolphins to a 27-14 win at the Chicago Bears.

Golden Tate

The veteran wide receiver had a great game as the Detroit Lions beat the New Orleans Saints 24-23. Tate caught 10 passes for 154 yards and 1 touchdown.

Aaron Rodgers

Green Bay’s quarterback had an almost perfect game, completing 19 of 22 passes for 255 yards, 3 touchdowns and a passer rating of 154.5. The Packers outclassed the Carolina Panthers 38-17.

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts dominated the Cincinnati Bengals in every aspect of the game and shut them out 27-0. Indianapolis had the ball for 39:43 minutes and gained a total of 506 yards (171 rushing yards and 335 passing yards). They also limited the Bengals to 32 yards on the ground and 103 yards through the air.

St. Louis Rams Special Teams

First they fooled the entire special teams unit of the Seattle Seahawks on a 90-yard punt return touchdown from WR Stedman Bailey, then they fooled them again with a fake punt to hold on to a 28-26 win over the defending Super Bowl champion.

Colt McCoy

I am not entirely sure if winner is the right term for Washington’s quarterback but Colt McCoy surpassed QB Kirk Cousins on the depth chart after Sunday’s come-from-behind win against the Tennessee Titans. It remains to be seen how this translates to playing time as QB Robert Griffin III’s return is imminent.

Denard Robinson

Jacksonville’s running back replaced the injured RB Toby Gerhart and may have won his starting job with Sunday’s performance. Against the Cleveland Browns he ran for 127 yards on 22 carries and scored 1 touchdown.

Alex Smith

The quarterback had a rock solid game in Kansas City’s 23-20 win at the San Diego Chargers. Smith completed 19 of 28 passes for 221 yards, 1 touchdown and a passer rating of 103.4.

DeMarco Murray

Murray rushed for 100 or more yards in each of Dallas’ seven games this season. In Sunday’s 31-21 win over the New York Giants he ran for 128 yards and 1 touchdown. He leads the NFL with 913 yards, almost 300 yards ahead of the second ranked running back.

Arizona Cardinals Defense

The Cardinals limited the Oakland Raiders to 220 total yards en route to a 24-13 away win. The Raiders only managed to rush for 56 yards and passed for only 164 yards. Arizona’s defense had a rather short working day, spending just 23:03 minutes on the field.

Denver Broncos

There was much more to Denver’s 42-17 win over the San Francisco 49ers than QB Peyton Manning’s historical performance. The Broncos were outstanding on the other side of the ball as well. The defense held RB Frank Gore to 20 yards and the pass rush brought down QB Colin Kaepernick six times, with DE DeMarcus Ware (3.0 sacks) and OLB Von Miller (2.0 sacks) leading the way.

New York Jets

The Jets controlled the ball for 40:54 minutes at the New England Patriots and yet they managed to lose 27-25. Their drives were rather impressive but they often lacked the threat of a touchdown. New York had to settle for 4 field goals and left QB Tom Brady & Co. with enough opportunities to avoid an upset.

Steven Jackson

Whatever happened to the once great RB Steven Jackson who had 8 consecutive 1,000+ rushing yards seasons with the St. Louis Rams before he came to Atlanta? On Sunday he ran for 22 yards on 8 carries as the Falcons lost at the Baltimore Ravens 29-7. His total yardage and yards per carry dropped considerably since joining the Falcons in 2013.

Houston Texans

Houston’s turnovers gave Pittsburgh the definite upper hand. The RB Arian Foster fumble and QB Ryan Fitzpatrick interception turned a 13-10 lead into a 13-24 in the final minute of the first half. The Pittsburgh Steelers went on to win 30-23.

NFL - Winners and Losers from Week 5

Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks runs with the ball against the Washington Redskins at FedExField on October 6, 2014 in Landover, Maryland. (October 6, 2014, Source: Rob Carr/Getty Images North America)

Green Bay Packers Pass Rush

Minnesota’s QB Christian Ponder never knew what hit him and where it came from. The Packers sacked him 6 times during the 42-10 pounding on Thursday night. ROLB Nick Perry accounted for 2.0 sacks. NT Letroy Guion and RDE Mike Daniels had 1.5 sacks each.

Travis Benjamin

Cleveland’s wide receiver sealed the come-from-behind win with two touchdown catches in the fourth quarter. Benjamin finished the game with 4 catches for 48 yards and 2 touchdowns as the Browns won at the Tennessee Titans 29-28.

Indianapolis Colts Offense

This wasn’t QB Andrew Luck’s best game but the offense surely knows how to control the ball. They were on the field for 38:43 minutes and played 80 downs. It also helped that Baltimore was rather mistake-prone when their offense finally had the ball.

New Orleans Saints Offensive Backfield

New Orleans’ passing offense was unusually unreliable against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, hence the running backs had to step it up. RB Khiry Robinson ran for 89 yards (4.2 yards per carry) and the game-winning touchdown in overtime. RB Pierre Thomas also scored 1 touchdown on one of his 4 carries and was New Orleans’ leading receiver with 77 yards and another touchdown.

Philadelphia Eagles Pressure

When you have the ball close to your own end zone you had better be very careful when playing against Philadelphia. The Eagles blocked a punt that led to a touchdown and recovered a fumble in the end zone after sacking St. Louis' QB Austin Davis.

Luke Kuechly

Carolina’s middle linebacker is always close to where the tackle’s been made. He accounted for 11 solo tackles against the Chicago Bears and had 15 tackles altogether. The defensive player of last season currently leads the NFL with 61 total tackles.

Ben Roethlisberger

Pittsburgh’s performance wasn’t spectacular against the Jacksonville Jaguars but QB Ben Roethlisberger was his usual effective self. He completed 72.2% of his passes for 273 yards, 1 touchdown and a passer rating of 103.1.

Denver Broncos

The Arizona Cardinals are certainly no pushover but the Denver Broncos made them look like they don’t even belong on the same field: The Broncos had 24 first downs versus Arizona’s 9. They rushed for 92 yards compared to Arizona’s 37 yards. The Broncos passed for 476 yards and held the Cardinals to 178 passing yards. They outclassed the Cardinals 41-20.

San Diego Chargers

The San Diego Chargers outplayed the New York Jets on both sides of the ball. They had 439 total yards (162 rushing yards and 277 passing yards) and limited the New York Jets to 151 yards (91 yards on the ground and 60 yards through the air). The Chargers also controlled the clock for 38:54 minutes en route to a 31-0 victory.

San Francisco 49ers Running Game

San Francisco’s running game kept the chains moving and enabled the 49ers to control the clock. They ran for 171 yards, with RB Frank Gore and RB Carlos Hyde accounting for 107 yards and 43 yards respectively.

New England Patriots

There are ways to beat the New England Patriots but disrespecting and humiliating HC Bill Belichick & Co. isn’t one of them. The media wrote them off and declared the end of a dynasty prematurely. The coaching staff fielded an angry and determined team and the Cincinnati Bengals never really stood a chance. QB Tom Brady passed for 292 yards, 2 touchdowns and a passer rating of 110.7. RB Steven Ridley ran for 113 yards and 1 touchdown and TE Rob Gronkowski caught 6 passes for 100 yards and 1 touchdown. The defense forced 3 fumbles and spent only 21:04 minutes on the field.

Russell Wilson

You have to give it to Seattle's 25-year old signal caller. He beat the Washington Redskins with his arm and his legs. Wilson completed 18 of 24 passes for 201 yards, 2 touchdowns and a passer rating of 127.3. He also ran for 122 yards and a touchdown.

Houston Texans Offense

The Dallas Cowboys gave the Texans every opportunity to win but Houston’s offense, with the exception of RB Arian Foster, was rather ineffective. It remains to be seen whether this loss is coming back to haunt the Texans at the end of the regular season.

Alex Henery

Detroit’s kicker missed three field goal attempts from 44, 47 and 50 yards in the second half, while the Bills came back from an 11-point deficit to win the game 17-14. By the way, Buffalo’s game winning field goal was made from 58 yards!

Steven Jackson

Atlanta’s inability to run the ball made it impossible to control the clock and thus enabling the New York Giants to come back from 20-10 down. Jackson ran for 37 yards on 13 attempts, averaging 2.8 yards per carry.

NFL - Winners from Week 4

Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers looks for a receiver against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 28, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. The Packers defeated the Bears 38 to 17. (September 27, 2014, Source: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images North America)

Larry Donnell

New York’s second-year pro has been a revelation for the Giants this season. On Thursday night he caught 7 passes for 54 yards and 3 touchdowns at the Washington Redskins. New York went on to win 45-14.

Aaron Rodgers

Green Bay’s quarterback tore the Chicago Bears apart. He completed 22 of 28 passes for 302 yards and threw 4 touchdowns for a passer rating of 151.2. Green Bay won 38-17 at the Chicago Bears.

Indianapolis Colts

The Indianapolis Colts absolutely dominated the game against the Tennessee Titans, beating them 41-17. They controlled the ball for 42:21 minutes and executed 82 plays. The running game was stuttering (2.6 yards per carry) but QB Andrew Luck was on fire, passing 41 times for 393 yards and 4 touchdowns.

Derrick Shelby

He may not play most snaps but it’s noteworthy that Miami’s third defensive end, behind DE Cameron Wake and DE Oliver Vernon, recorded 2 sacks against the Oakland Raiders at Wembley.

Matthew Stafford

Detroit’s quarterback put up great numbers despite WR Calvin Johnson seeing limited action due to an ankle injury. Stafford completed 24 of 34 passes for 293 yards and 2 touchdowns as the Lions beat the New York Jets 24-17.

Michael Johnson

You have to wonder how the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were able to win at the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-24 but DE Michael Johnson was a difference maker. His sack on Pittsburgh’s first drive caused a fumble and gave the Buccs a touchdown two plays later. The 27-year old finished the game with 5 total tackles and 2.0 sacks.

Joe Flacco

The 29-year old quarterback had a great game as the Baltimore Ravens beat the Carolina Panthers 38-10. Flacco completed 71% of his passes for 327 yards, 3 touchdowns and a passer rating of 137.4.

J.J. Watt

With a less than spectacular offense it had to be a defensive player who saved the Houston Texans. Watt had 5 total tackles and returned an interception 80 yards for a touchdown. Two weeks ago he caught his first touchdown pass at the Oakland Raiders.

San Diego Chargers Passing Offense

With a basically non-existent running game San Diego had to attack through the air and was successful. QB Philip Rivers completed 29 of 39 passes for 377 yards, 3 touchdowns and a passer rating of 130.0. WR Eddie Royal caught 5 passes for 105 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Minnesota Vikings Running Game

Last week I said that Minnesota had no running game since RB Adrian Peterson’s suspension. This week the Vikings proved me wrong. Rookie RB Jerrick McKinnon ran for 135 yards and RB Matt Asiata rushed for 78 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Vikings gained 241 yards on the ground.

San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers allowed a few mishaps in the first half but their dominance on both sides of the ball paid off in the second half. San Francisco controlled the ball for 42:17 minutes and limited the Eagles to 22 yards on the ground and 191 passing yards. RB Frank Gore (119 yards) was part of a running game that accounted for 218 yards.

DeMarco Murray

A lot of players contributed to Dallas’ 38-17 thumping of the New Orleans Saints but I’ll just keep mentioning DeMarco Murray, who now has rushed for 100 or more yards in each of the Cowboys’ games this season. On Sunday night he ran for 149 yards and scored 2 touchdowns.

Alex Smith

The 30-year old had one of the best games of his career as the Kansas City Chiefs beat the New England Patriots 41-14. He completed 20 of 26 passes for 248 yards, 3 touchdowns and a passer rating of 144.4.

NFL - Winners and Losers from Week 3

DeMarco Murray #29 of the Dallas Cowboys rushes against the St. Louis Rams in the first quarter at the Edward Jones Dome on September 21, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Cowboys beat the Rams 34-31. (September 20, 2014, Source: Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images North America)

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons bounced back from last week’s defeat at Cincinnati by thumping the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 56-14. Atlanta gained 344 yards through the air and 144 yards on the ground, while limiting the Buccs to 64 rushing yards and 153 passing yards.

Philip Rivers

The 32-year old had another great game as the San Diego Chargers won at the Buffalo Bills 22-10. Rivers completed 18 of 25 passes for 256 yards and 2 touchdown throws to WR Eddie Royal. His passer rating was 131.4.

Cincinnati Bengals Pass Protection

Has anyone noticed that the Cincinnati Bengals haven’t surrendered a single sack this season? The Ravens, Falcons and Titans all failed to bring Cincy’s quarterback down.

Detroit Lions Defense

The Lions pressured Green Bay’s QB Aaron Rodgers all game long and limited him to 147 net yards passing. They also held the Packers to just 76 yards on the ground.

DeMarco Murray

The 26-year old running back recorded his third 100+ rushing yards game of the season and currently leads the NFL with a total of 385 yards. On Sunday he ran for 100 yards and 1 touchdown in Dallas’ 34-31 win at the St. Louis Rams.

New England Patriots Defense

A strong showing was needed and the Patriots delivered. They held the Oakland Raiders to 67 rushing yards and 174 passing yards. Most importantly, DT Vince Wilfork intercepted QB Derek Carr with 51 seconds left to save New England’s hard-fought 16-9 win.

Rashad Jennings

The 29-year old Giant was unstoppable on Sunday, rushing for 176 yards and 1 touchdown in New York’s 30-17 win over the Houston Texans.

Indianapolis Colts Offense

The Colts were on fire on Sunday and beat the Jacksonville Jaguars convincingly 44-17. QB Andrew Luck passed for 370 yards and 4 touchdowns. RB Trent Richardson and RB Ahmad Bradshaw kept the ground attack rolling and accounted for 122 yards.

Knile Davis

Kansas City’s second-year running back started for the injured RB Jamaal Charles and put up amazing stats. Davis rushed for 132 yards and scored 1 touchdown as the Chiefs won at the Miami Dolphins 34-15.

Seattle Seahawks Rushing Offense

Seattle’s offense worked against the Denver Broncos because their running game with RB Marshawn Lynch and QB Russell Wilson set up the passing game and kept the offense two-dimensional throughout the entire game. Lynch and Wilson ran for a combined 128 yards and Wilson threw for an additional 258 yards.

Pittsburgh Steelers Rushing Offense

Both RB Le’Veon Bell and RB LeGarette Blount had a run over 50 yards and provided the offense with excellent field positions. At the end of the game the Pittsburgh Steelers had a total of 264 rushing yards.

Billy Cundiff

Cleveland’s kicker missed a 50-yard goal earlier in the game against the Baltimore Ravens, but what would have happened if his 36-yard field goal attempt with 7:46 minutes left to play had not been blocked? The Browns would have taken a 24-17 lead and possibly won the game instead of losing 23-21.

Minnesota Vikings Rushing Offense

Minnesota’s rushing attack is basically non-existent since RB Adrian Peterson’s suspension. In the past two games the Vikings accumulated 113 yards, with RB Matt Asiata averaging 2.8 yards per run as the main ball carrier.

Washington Redskins

The Washington Redskins blew it in the fourth quarter and handed the win to the Philadelphia Eagles. K Kai Forbath missed a 33-yard field goal and the Eagles scored a touchdown on the subsequent drive to make it 34-27. Then QB Kirk Cousins threw an interception, which resulted in a further three points for the Eagles soon afterwards.

San Francisco 49ers

Discipline is at an all-time low. Defending a first-half lead the 49ers committed one personal foul after the other, enabling the Cardinals to move across the field and score with ease as well as robbing themselves of good scoring opportunities.

New York Jets

Within the opening five minutes the New York Jets committed two turnovers and never recovered. QB Geno Smith threw an interception and SS Ryan Mundy returned the ball 45-yards for a touchdown. Rookie WR Jalen Saunders fumbled a punt shortly afterwards, which led to another Chicago Bears touchdown three plays later. Eventually the Jets lost 27-19.

NFL - Winners and Losers from Week 1

Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos and tight end Julius Thomas #80 celebrate Thomas' third touchdown reception of the first half of a game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 7, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (September 6, 2014, Source: Justin Edmonds/Getty Images North America)

Marshawn Lynch

It is hard to single out a Seahawks player as they dominated the Green Bay Packers on both sides of the ball, but RB Marshawn Lynch stood out a little bit extra. The 28-year old scored 2 rushing touchdowns and ran for 110 yards, averaging 5.5 yards per carry.

Matt Ryan

Matty “Ice” was hot on Sunday. Atlanta’s quarterback completed 31 of 43 pass attempts for 448 yards and 3 touchdowns and finished with a passer rating of 128.8, as the Falcons beat the Saints 37-34 in overtime.

Tennessee Titans

The Titans outplayed the Kansas City Chiefs on every level. On defense they intercepted QB Alex Smith three times and limited RB Jamaal Charles to 19 rushing yards. On offense they rushed for 162 yards and QB Jake Locker finished with a passer rating of 111.4, completing 66.7% of his passes for 266 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Knowshon Moreno

The Dolphins signed the 27-year old running back to a one-year deal in the offseason but Moreno is making a case for a long-term contract. The sixth-year pro out of Georgia ran for 134 yards and 1 touchdown against the New England Patriots. He is averaging 4.1 yards per carry throughout his career.

New York Jets Rushing Offense

New York’s workload split at the running back position between RB Chris Johnson and RB Chris Ivory may cause problems for many teams this season. Johnson accounted for 68 yards on 13 carries and Ivory ran for 102 yards and 1 touchdown. The Jets have the best rushing offense in the league for now, totalling 212 yards against the Oakland Raiders.

Pittsburgh Steelers Offense

The Steelers rushed for 127 yards against the Cleveland Browns and passed for an additional 363 yards. QB Ben Roethlisberger, who finished with a completion percentage of 67.6% and a passer rating of 100.7, found WR Antonio Brown 5 times for 116 yards and a touchdown. RB Le’Veon Bell ran for 109 yards on 21 carries and 1 touchdown.

Cincinnati Bengals Pass Protection

Cincinnati’s offensive line didn’t allow a single sack and enabled QB Andy Dalton to pass for 301 yards at the Baltimore Ravens.

Ryan Fitzpatrick

The 31-year old had an outstanding debut for the Houston Texans. Fitzpatrick completed 14 of 22 passes for 206 yards and threw 1 touchdown for a passer rating of 109.3.

Julius Thomas

Denver’s tight end had the probably best game of his career, catching 7 passes for 104 yards and 3 touchdowns, as the Broncos beat the Indianapolis Colts 31-24.

Matthew Stafford

Detroit’s 26-year old signal caller dissected New York’s defense en route to a 35-14 victory. Stafford completed 68.8% of his passes for 346 yards and 2 touchdowns. He finished with a passer rating of 125.3.

Carson Palmer

Carson Palmer orchestrated a 12-point comeback in the fourth quarter (well, both two-point conversions failed) to lead the Arizona Cardinals to an 18-17 win over the San Diego Chargers. On Monday night he completed 24 of 37 passes for 304 yards, 2 touchdowns and a passer rating of 108.4.

Chicago Bears Rushing Defense

The Bears ranked last in 2013, allowing opposing running backs to average 161.4 yards per game. In this season’s opener they surrendered 193 yards on the ground. Buffalo’s RBs C.J. Spiller, Fred Jackson and Anthony Dixon each rushed for 50+ yards. The Bears will find it hard to make the playoffs if they cannot stop the run.

St. Louis Rams

You knew this would be a difficult season for the Rams after QB Sam Bradford re-tore his ACL in the preseason but Saturday’s performance would put them at the bottom of pretty much any NFL power rankings. Most surprisingly, St. Louis’ defense did not get anything going against the Minnesota Vikings.

Toby Gerhart

It may be unfair to nominate Jacksonville’s running back as he sustained an ankle injury in the game, but the Jaguars could not protect their 17-point lead against the Philadelphia Eagles in the second half because Gerhart was unable to produce. He finished the game with 42 yards on 18 carries.

Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys committed 4 turnovers, which resulted in 21 points for the San Francisco 49ers. QB Tony Romo threw 3 interceptions and RB DeMarco Murray lost a fumble which CB Chris Culliver returned 35 yards for a touchdown. After 10 minutes, the Cowboys dug a hole for themselves too deep to climb out of.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers should have beaten the Carolina Panthers, who missed QB Cam Newton, but their turnovers proved costly. QB Josh McCown’s 2 interceptions and RB Bobby Rainey’s fumble led to 17 points for the Panthers.