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Breaking down the defining moments from all of the Week Eight matchups.
USA TODAY Sports activities

Seattle Seahawks tight finish Jimmy Graham (88) celebrates after catching a landing cross in the course of the second half towards the Houston Texans at CenturyLink Subject.(Photograph: Troy Wayrynen, USA TODAY Sports activities)

The 40 issues we discovered from Week Eight of the NFL season:

1. We will have rather a lot to say about sacks. We already knew they turned an official NFL statistic in 1982, however maintain that in thoughts — if you weren’t conscious — as you proceed studying.

2. It is time to begin fascinated by Minnesota Vikings DE Everson Griffen as a defensive participant of the yr entrance runner. He has at the very least one sack in all eight video games (solely the third participant to start out a season with such a streak) and a complete of 10.

Three. Los Angeles Chargers DE Joey Bosa turned the primary participant to succeed in 19 sacks in his first 20 NFL video games. He and teammate Melvin Ingram every have 8½, giving them an out of doors shot of turning into the primary teammates to every attain 20 in a single season.

four. Carolina Panthers DE Julius Peppers recorded his 151st profession sack Sunday. Solely Corridor of Famers Bruce Smith (200), Reggie White (198) and Kevin Greene (160) have extra.

5. Since 2011, Denver Broncos OLB Von Miller has 80½ sacks, most within the NFL in that span. He’ll face the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs on Monday evening and has eight sacks in his final six video games towards them. Good luck, Alex Smith.

6. New York Jets followers will not confuse their crew with the previous New York Sack Trade. The Jets started Sunday with an AFC-low 10 sacks. Not less than DE Muhammad Wilkerson managed to bag Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan, accumulating the primary sack among the many Jets’ vaunted group of defensive linemen.

7. The Washington Redskins have been with out three beginning offensive linemen Sunday. No shock then that the Dallas Cowboys racked up 4 sacks, together with DeMarcus Lawrence including to his NFL-high determine of 10½.

Eight. New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees accomplished his 6,000th profession cross Sunday, making him the third participant to affix an elite membership beforehand occupied by solely Brett Favre (6,300) and Peyton Manning (6,125). Brees reached the benchmark in 240 video games, 19 fewer than Manning wanted and 46 forward of Favre’s tempo.

9. A lot to the displeasure of head coach Sean Payton, Saints RB Mark Ingram misplaced two fumbles Sunday. A seven-year vet, Ingram had by no means coughed up greater than two fumbles in a season previous to this yr (he has three in 2017).

10. Nonetheless, regardless of Ingram’s butter fingers and Brees’ failure to throw a TD cross for the primary time this yr, New Orleans (5-2) stays in first place within the NFC South whereas persevering with to win in an unfamiliar manner — behind its protection. After limiting the Chicago Bears to 12 factors, the Saints have allowed 17 or fewer 4 occasions throughout their present five-game win streak.

Extra: Ezekiel Elliott carries Cowboys previous Redskins as authorized drama looms

Extra: Majority of Texans gamers kneel after proprietor Bob McNair’s ‘inmates’ comment

11. New Orleans’ Marshon Lattimore deserves critical defensive rookie of the yr consideration. He entered Week Eight because the NFL’s top-rated cornerback, in keeping with the badytics web site Professional Soccer Focus, and ended it with a game-sealing interception, his second decide in three weeks.

12. The Falcons narrowly averted a season sweep by the AFC East, outlasting the Jets 25-20. The defending NFC champs needs to be thrilled to finish the AFC portion of their schedule. Atlanta gained its first three video games, all towards NFC foes, earlier than enjoying the Payments, Dolphins, Patriots and Jets in succession.

13. Kudos to NFL Analysis for this one: Josh McCown is the primary Jets quarterback to throw a number of landing pbades in 4 consecutive video games since — look forward to it — Ray Lucas in 1999.

14. Welcome again to Panthers MLB Luke Kuechly, who returned to the sphere for the primary time since he suffered his newest concussion Oct. 12. Kuechly had eight tackles (two for losses) and an interception in Carolina’s 17-Three defeat of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Extra importantly, he survived the sport unscathed.

15. On the flip facet, Bucs QB Jameis Winston had three turnovers, and Tampa Bay’s second-ranked offense was restricted to a season-low 279 yards by Kuechly’s Panthers.

16. New England Patriots QB Tom Brady is not precisely going deep this yr, despite the fact that his 2,541 pbading yards lead the NFL. The 2-time MVP added 333 to his whole Sunday, however 166 have been collected on pbades to his working backs.

17. Keep in mind these considerations that the Patriots protection can be the reigning champs’ undoing? Time to rethink that. New England allowed 128 factors in its first 4 video games, however simply 51 over the previous 4 — all wins.

18. Chargers RB Melvin Gordon had an 87-yard TD run Sunday, 76 yards longer than any of his 13 earlier profession speeding TDs.

19. With Marshawn Lynch suspended, the Oakland Raiders rushed for 54 yards in Sunday’s loss to the Buffalo Payments. The Raiders are actually 1-Three this season after they fail to hit the century mark on the bottom. Worse, at Three-5, Oakland has already misplaced extra video games than it did in 2016.

20. JuJu Smith-Schuster is shortly turning into one of many NFL’s most fulfilling performers. The rookie receiver from USC recorded the longest cross play in Pittsburgh Steelers historical past when he raced 97 yards for a landing within the Steelers’ 20-15 win towards the Detroit Lions, turning into the primary participant in NFL historical past to attain 4 touchdowns earlier than turning 21. Even higher: He celebrated by locking up the train bike, a nod to the odyssey of his stolen bicycle final week.

21. Detroit had a downright weird evening. The Lions had 482 yards of whole offense towards the league’s top-ranked cross protection, however needed to accept 5 area objectives and have been Zero-5 within the crimson zone. A brief-yardage resolution should be discovered, because the group went 2-12 on third down.

22. With 11 factors Sunday, Indianapolis Colts Okay Adam Vinatieri tied Gary Anderson for second most (2,434) in NFL historical past. Sadly for Vinatieri, he wanted two extra to beat the Cincinnati Bengals. He is now 111 from surpbading Corridor of Famer Morten Andersen because the league’s No. 1 all-time scorer.

23. After dropping 5 consecutive video games by a area purpose or much less, the winless San Francisco 49ers have dropped their final two by a collective 53-point margin.

24. Browns coach Hue Jackson is now 1-23 in Cleveland, with 14 of these losses by double digits after Sunday’s 33-16 defeat to the Vikings in London. However Browns followers hoping for a bye week ouster are prone to be disenchanted given Jackson is scheduled for a convention name with reporters Monday.

25. On the brilliant facet, for those who’re into glbades which are 2% full, Browns rookie QB DeShone Kizer didn’t commit his 14th turnover of the season, permitting him to play a complete sport for the primary time since Week Three.

26. Spencer Drango was Cleveland’s beginning left deal with Sunday. The final particular person to man the submit not named Joe Thomas, whose streak of 167 consecutive begins formally ended Sunday after he underwent season-ending triceps surgical procedure final week, was Kevin Shaffer on Dec. 31, 2006.

27. If the season ended right this moment — it would not — the Vikings (6-2) can be the NFC’s No. 2 playoff seed, simply behind the Philadelphia Eagles and their NFL-best 7-1 file.

28. The final time the Eagles began 7-1 was 2004 — yep, the final time additionally they reached the Tremendous Bowl.

29. Nevertheless it is value noting that Eagles QB Carson Wentz, who’s on the brief record of MVP candidates, was sacked thrice and hit seven throughout his first sport with out injured Professional Bowl LT Jason Peters.

30. Because the begin of the 2016 season, Minnesota QB Case Keenum is Eight-7. The person he is filling in for, Sam Bradford, is 9-Eight over the identical interval.

31. The Jacksonville (er, Sacksonville) Jaguars made somewhat noise throughout their bye week, buying former all-pro DT Marcell Dareus, who’d fallen out of favor in Buffalo, in a commerce over the weekend. Dareus joins an imposing protection that leads the league with 33 sacks and is on tempo to interrupt the 1984 Chicago Bears’ single-season file of 72.

32. May the strikes of Dareus and, beforehand, Adrian Peterson be the harbinger of an energetic commerce deadline, which is Tuesday afternoon? Jimmy Graham, Carlos Hyde, Eric Ebron, Matt Forte, Martavis Bryant and even Calvin Johnson are among the many names which have surfaced as doubtlessly being on the transfer.

33. NFL officers are nonetheless reluctant to eject gamers for egregious unlawful hits. Whether or not you suppose Miami Dolphins LB Kiko Alonso’s concussion-inducing hit on Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco on Thursday evening was soiled or not, it was most undoubtedly towards the foundations to hit Flacco — despite the fact that he was sliding — forcibly to the pinnacle. And was it actually obligatory for Alonso, who was dedicated to hitting Flacco on a bang-bang play, to decrease his shoulder, too?

34. With a bye simply across the nook in Week 10, sitting subsequent Sunday may not be the worst concept for Flacco, who’s not solely recovering from his head harm however is on tempo for his least-productive season (6 TD pbades, 72.Three QB ranking on the halfway level) after lacking preseason with a again harm. With two TD throws and a 103.1 ranking in spot responsibility this yr, Ryan Mallett looks like a lateral transfer when contemplating he may present Flacco almost three weeks to recuperate.

35. What a distinction Ravens NT Brandon Williams makes. He is solely appeared in half of Baltimore’s eight video games resulting from foot issues, and the crew entered Week Eight final within the NFL in run protection. However Williams performed towards the Dolphins, who managed simply 45 yards on the bottom. In 4 video games with Williams, the Ravens are permitting 96 speeding yards per sport however 169.5 with out him.

36. The Ravens’ 40-Zero win was essentially the most lopsided of their 22-year historical past.

37. Houston Texans rookie QB Deshaun Watson now has 19 TD pbades, a quantity no quarterback has ever managed in his first seven NFL video games. (Kurt Warner beforehand owned the mark with 18.) Solely Watson, Peyton Manning, Marcus Mariota and Dak Prescott have 4 three-TD pbading video games as rookies for the reason that 1970 merger … and Watson now has 9 possibilities to personal that file by himself. 

38. Sadly for Watson, he was additionally picked off thrice by the Seattle Seahawks and have become the fifth consecutive rookie pbader to lose at CenturyLink Subject. The Seahawks protection hadn’t allowed a fourth-quarter TD in 2017 earlier than surrendering a pair of TD pbades within the ultimate interval. However CB Richard Sherman swiped Watson’s ultimate cross to ice the result. It was Sherman’s sixth profession sport with two INTs.

39. The Seahawks’ 33 speeding yards Sunday have been tied for his or her fewest in a successful effort since Pete Carroll turned the pinnacle coach in 2010.

40. Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott now has 413 speeding yards during the last three video games after his 150-yard outburst Sunday. However his newest spherical of jurisprudence this week will decide if he and the crew keep their momentum.

***

Comply with Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis

PHOTOS: Better of NFL Week Eight

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