Photo by: Adrian Curiel
The NFL season is nowover halfway complete as week nine has just concluded. Let’s take a look at the best teams thus far.
The Philadelphia Eagles are the only team still undefeated with a record of 8-0. The third-year Jalen Hurts is blowing all expectations out of the water as he continues to impress each week. Hurts currently has 2,042 passing yards, 12 passing TDs, and has only thrown two interceptions which is tied for the second least in the NFL. However, Hurts is not only a threat in the air as he currently has 326 rushing yards and six rushing TDs.
Hurts’ number one option this year has been WR, AJ Brown. Brown is currently tied for 4th for the most receiving touchdowns in the league tallying sixth thus far and is top 10 in receiving yards with 718. Hurts and Brown’s hot starts combined with the number one offensive line in the NFL and a top-three team defence is why Philadelphia continues to look like a lock for the playoffs and a Superbowl favourite.
Current MVP frontrunner Josh Allen is the biggest reason the Bills are currently 6-2. Allen has had an exceptional first eight games with 2,403 passing yards, 19 passing TDs and 392 rushing yards.
But we can not ignore the fact that Allen also has some of the best offensive weapons in the game.
Stefon Diggs ranks top three in receptions, receiving yards and receiving TDs. Arguably one of the best route runners in the NFL, no one in the league has been able to find an answer for former First Team All-Pro WR.
23-year-old WR Gabe Davis has played a major role in the Bills offence this year. Leading in the NFL in yards per catch with 26.1, making him the most efficient receiver and largest threat on long passes.
Although Buffalo is a threat in the air they are also great at running the ball. RB Devon Singletary had a slow start to the season not getting as many touches as expected. However, over the last three weeks Singletary has seen the ball 39 times, averaging 4.2 yards per rush.
The Bills also acquired RB Nyheim Hines from the Indianapolis Colts at this year’s trade deadline. Hines – who was also a RB two with the Colts – will make the Bills run game more of a threat in the second half of the season.
For Buffalo it is not a question of if they make the playoffs, it is how far they will go and if they will be able to make their first Super Bowl appearance since 1994.
Unlike the Eagles and Bills, the Cowboys have had to use two different QB’s at the starting position this year.
Ranked as a top seven QB coming into the 2022 campaign, Dak Prescott had a rough start to the season breaking his thumb in the fourth quarter of week one game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The injury sidelined him for five weeks before he returned in week seven and has since averaged 228.5 passing yards and thrown three touchdowns in two games.
Prescott being out did not affect the flow of things as WR CeeDee Lamb and RB Ezekiel Elliott continued to produce with backup QB Cooper Rush manning the offence.
Lamb has scored three TDs, while accumulating 556 receiving yards and 42 receptions. Expect those numbers to explode in the second half and have one of the weaker schedules down the stretch.
Elliott has been dominant running the ball so far this season despite the Cowboys reluctance to go to him while in the red zone. Elliot is averaging just 1.6 touches in the red zone. In prior seasons he averaged just under three. That could be due to the emergence of running back two, Tony Pollard who has seen his touches go up in the past few weeks.
With Dallas having their starting QB back at full health, two viable options in the back field and WR CeeDee Lamb just getting started, could it finally be the Cowboys’ year?
Kansas City Chiefs
Patrick Mahomes has arguably been the best QB in the league over the past four to five seasons. Some thought Mahomes would struggle coming into the season after losing WR1 Tyreek Hill however Mahomes has silenced the doubters. Mahomes leads the NFL in passing touchdowns with 21, sits top three in QB rating, and has 2605 yards thrown.
KC possibly has the best TE of the generation in Travis Kelce. Kelce hit another milestone this year joining just Rob Gronkowski and Tony Gonzalez as the third TE to hit 30 games with 100 plus receiving yards. On top of that he is tied for first with seven receiving touchdowns and is top 10 in both receiving yards and receptions.
Kelce also has the best red zone efficiency for any TE in the league which is a leading reason why KC sits first in Red Zone efficiency at 76.67 per cent.
Another contributor to the Chiefs success would be their O-line. The Chiefs currently have a top 10 O-line in the NFL ranking 5th in pass protection and 10th in run protection.
The Chiefs are looking to extend their playoff streak to 8 years and get back to the Superbowl for the third time in just four years.
Runners up: San Francisco 49ers, New York Giants, Baltimore Ravens, Minnesota Vikings
Week 10 action kicks off Nov. 10 as the Carolina Panthers host the Atlanta Falcons at home. The NFL can be watched on TSN and CTV or all games can be streamed on DAZN.