The Opening – While I was busy living my best life in Disney World, I was not able to post a Week 2 Not So Monday Morning Thoughts. I will be releasing these every Tuesday or Wednesday with all of my reactions from the week, commenting on major wins, losses and storylines. As well as keeping you updated with how right or wrong I am. Hopefully more of the former.

Hotard Huddle Podcast RETURNS. Stay tuned as I, along with a guest, will record weekly podcasts with only NFL talk for now. Another episode coming at you this Thursday!

As per usual, start this off with the Weekly Picks.

  • Cardinals (-7.5) Win
  • Cowboys (-3.5) Win
  • Seahawks (-2) Loss
  • Bucs (Even) Loss
  • Saints (+2.5) Win

Season Record: 5-10…certainly better than the last 2 weeks.

Justin Tucker Holy Shit

It’s no secret that Justin Tucker is THE best kicker in football bar none. In my opinion, he is the best kicker of all time even over the great Adam Vinatieri. He just added to an already stellar resume and legacy by booting an NFL record 66 yarder for the win against the Lions. It seems absurd to start a weekly recap with a damn field goal. However, watching that live the second they lined up for it, I just had a feeling it was about to special. It sure as hell was. So much drama in one kick. The fact it bounced off the crossbar in the right direction made it that much better.

Watch here: Justin Tucker 66 Yarder

tHe CoNtRoVeRsY: Of course people are cooking up their bullshit about the kick should have never happened. Watch and pay attention to broadcasts more often please. Yes, the play clock on the broadcast hit 0 before the snap on the prior play. However, that doesn’t mean there was definitely a delay of game. Broadcasts do have errors with play clocks, game clocks, LOS and yards to go. I wouldn’t say often, but often enough to notice. The only people who know the actual clock are the officials on the field. So chill the hell out.

It’s Only Week 3

Often times early in the NFL season, we have overreactions to wins and losses. Fans and talking heads alike start making rash assumptions about what the landscape is about to look like. I talked about this a few years ago. So I will simply copy and paste the same notion and analysis I wrote in 2019.

The first quarter of the NFL season is nothing more than an extended version of the preseason. Although the data is outdated, the notion remains.

Heading in to Week 3 of 2018
Bengals 2-0 (missed playoffs)
Dolphins 2-0 (missed playoffs)
Seahawks 0-2 (made playoffs)
Saints 1-1 (Loss to bad Bucs team)
Patriots 1-1 (Loss to bad Jags team)

Heading in to Week 3 of 2017
Saints 0-2 (made playoffs)
Ravens 2-0 (missed playoffs)
Lions 2-0 (missed playoffs)
Broncos 2-0 (missed playoffs)

Trey Wingo said it best, “Understand the trade off NFL teams are making with the new normal of preseason: Teams are deciding rusty and healthy is better than ready and injured.”

As a result, bad teams look good. Good teams look bad.

Mahomes v Herbert is THE next best rivalry in the NFL

I was completely enamored with Justin Herbert last season. He was my definitive rookie of the year. The more I watched the more I loved. He spent so many games running for his life and showing off his BIG and ACCURATE arm. The fact he is in a division with Patty Mahomes is even better. They had their first face off in Week 3 and it lived up to all the hype with Herbert getting the dub with the second year starter outshining the best QB in football right now. Do we really only get to watch this matchup twice per year? Boo.

The CHASE YOUNG BUST TRAIN ROLLS ON

If you are a frequent reader, I wrote a pre-draft analysis on Chase Young being a bust for only having one thing to get sacks, a great first step because of his freakish athleticism. I compared it to having only 1 pitch in baseball. It won’t fly. Even funnier, some Washington Football Team fan boys found it and tried to poo poo on me before I unloaded on them on Twitter eventually getting blocked by some. I intend to re-stoke the fire against those mouth breathers because fuck em.

Sure, Young won DROY last year. But he wasn’t great compared to other edge rushers over the years. He generated only 24 pressures with 7.5 sacks. It’s good, but not great. Other rookie seasons were as follows…

  • Panthers Brian Burns – 7.5 sacks and 23 pressures *Note – he only played 27% of the defensive snaps*
  • Chargers Joey Bosa – 10.5 sacks and 80 pressures
  • 49ers Nick Bosa – 9.0 sacks and 45 pressures
  • Broncos Bradley Chubb – 12.0 sacks and 36 pressures
  • Steelers TJ Watt – 7.0 sacks and 33 pressures

Here we are 3 weeks into Young’s second season and he has…

5 pressures with no sacks. For good measure, he is currently tied for 43rd in total pressures. Among those with 1 pressure, 161 have at least .5 sacks. Oh and the defense he is “leading” is currently ranked as follows…

  • 29th Points Per Game (30.7)
  • 26th Rush Yards Per Game (125.0)
  • 29th Pass Yards Per Game (307.0)
  • 31st Total Yards Per Game (432.0)
  • 3rd in Total Pressures (40) – Young is 4th on the team
  • 18th in DEF DVOA

What a game changer for a defense. GTFO.

Cowboys – The Most Fun Team to Watch in the NFL

Love them or hate them, they are fun as hell to watch. The offense is a well oiled machine and the defense looks much improved thanks to younger players like Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs. After week 1 and the way they played against Tampa, I was impressed. They edged out a very good Chargers team last week. They absolutely shit on the Eagles. I am waiting for a Cowboys like meltdown. Until it happens, I will enjoy the show and buy the hype on them at least. It is nice to see Dak Prescott under center again and he looks damn good after that gruesome injury last year.

Rams v Bucs

In the undoubted game of the week, the Rams put the hurting on the Bucs in this one. Again, let’s not overreacted and count the Bucs out. Sounds like familiar territory and shades of Brady in New England. It was certainly a good showing and win for the Rams who are a legitimate threat in the NFC after grabbing Matthew Stafford. This is hands down the best team he had around him. Much like Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs unlocked each other last year, Stafford unlocked Sean McVay’s offense as much as Sean McVay unlocked Matthew Stafford.

If we get a rematch of this one in the NFC Championship, I may shit my pants for it.

One of the cool moments was after the game, the amount of respect and love Tom Brady and Jalen Ramsey have for one another is incredible.

While I obviously can pour on the Brady love fest. I mean, I am thrilled to draft him 93rd overall in fantasy as he is the number one fantasy QB. Approximately, 8 others were taken before him. Enough about the GOAT. I want to take a brief moment to talk about Jalen Ramsey who after a roller coaster few years in Jacksonville is finally back at the top of the class as far as corners go. That Rams defense is great thanks to him and of course Aaron Donald.

I took a dive into Ramsey since joining the Rams…

  • 27 Games
  • 81/140
  • 57.8 Comp %
  • 855 Yards Given Up
  • 6.1 YPA
  • 31.7 Yards Per Game
  • 2 Touchdowns Given Up
  • 3 Interceptions
  • ONLY 5 Missed Tackles

Eli Manning is Reaching National Treasure Territory

As if the Manning MNF broadcasts couldn’t get any better, Eli Manning decided to double flick off the camera impersonating a 9-year-old Eagles fan who once did it it to him. What a power move. This is commonplace in professional wrestling, but certainly not on the ultra conservative broadcasts we are so used to seeing. GIVE ME MORE OF THIS!

Week 4 Power Rankings

  1. Los Angeles Rams (3-0)
  2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1)
  3. Arizona Cardinals (3-0)
  4. Buffalo Bills (2-1)
  5. Dallas Cowboys (2-1)
  6. Los Angeles Chargers (2-1)
  7. Green Bay Packers (2-1)
  8. New Orleans Saints (2-1)
  9. Kansas City Chiefs (1-2)
  10. Las Vegas Raiders (3-0)
  11. Baltimore Ravens (2-1) –
  12. San Francisco 49ers (2-1)
  13. Cleveland Browns (2-1)
  14. Seattle Seahawks (1-2)
  15. Carolina Panthers (3-0)
  16. Tennessee Titans (2-1)
  17. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-2)
  18. Miami Dolphins (1-2)
  19. Cincinnati Bengals (2-1)
  20. New England Patriots (1-2)
  21. Denver Broncos (3-0)
  22. Philadelphia Eagles (1-2)
  23. Minnesota Vikings (1-2)
  24. Indianapolis Colts (0-3)
  25. Washington Football Team (1-2)
  26. Chicago Bears (1-2)
  27. Detroit Lions (0-3)
  28. Atlanta Falcons (1-2)
  29. Houston Texans (1-2)
  30. New York Giants (0-3)
  31. New York Jets (0-3)
  32. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3)

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