On September 9, 2019, in Sporting News, by Bobby Goodspeed


Thursday night football for 2019 premiered at last and what more could a die -hard football fan ask for that the Packers and the Bears going at it at Soldier Field in Chicago on a Thursday night.

What was expected to be an offensive contest between veteran Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Chicago’s Mitchell Trubisky turned out to be anything but with only 13 points being scored all evening and Green Bay grabbing the victory 10-3.

Then finally on Sunday we got the whole enchilada.  A full seven hours of NFL action on NFL Red Zone, not counting the night game, and it was fast and furious for awhile there with young Patrick Mahomes providing the most spectacular action in the early going.

The Chiefs’ quarterback had an astounding first half leading broadcasters to predict his breaking some all time records.  He did slow down in the second half but still ended up with 378 yards and 3 touchdowns, all to the speedy Sammy Watkins who finished with 9 catches for 198 total yards. Kansas City put up 40 points to the Jags 26.

In that same game, after scoring an early touchdown, the new Jacksonville quarterback Nick Foles suffered a broken collar bone when he was sandwiched between two beefy defenders while being sacked.  Foles just signed an 88 million dollar 4 year contract with the Jags!

The Panthers hosted the Rams in Charlotte in a close contest where the most outstanding player was clearly Carolina’s Christian McCaffrey who finished with 2 rushing touchdowns and 128 yards on the ground plus 10 receptions amounting to another 81 yards in the air.  Los Angeles still edged Carolina by a final score of 30-27.

While the Vikings pretty much dominated the Atlanta Falcons at home in Minnesota, the Redskins took off to an early lead against the Eagles only to have Philadelphia chip away until finally coming away with the win 32-27 at home.

There were some other good close games as well on Sunday.  The Seahawks hosted the Cincinnati Bengals as Andy Dalton led all quarterbacks this Sunday by passing for 418 yards and 2 touchdowns in a losing effort to the Seahawks 21-20.

Out in Los Angeles the Chargers had the Colts in for a visit and managed a 30-24 victory behind Phillip Rivers’ 333 passing yards and 3 touchdown passes.

Cowboy quarterback Dak Prescott threw for 405 yards and 4 touchdowns to lead Dallas to a 35-17 win over Eli Manning and his New York Giants.

After such great expectations, Baker Mayfield’s opening performance at home in Cleveland fell far short of what his Twitter fans were expecting.  Perhaps a bit too much hype and trash talk has distracted the talented new Browns quarterback from his real job.  His 285 yards passing was not bad but Mayfield threw 3 interceptions while scoring only one touchdown. The Browns were embarrassed at home by the Titans 43-13.

Down in Tampa Bay Jamis Winston also managed to throw 3 interceptions while scoring only one touchdown. Jimmy Garoppolo wasn’t a whole lot better throwing for only 166 yards, but the 49ers did come away with a 31-17 win over the Buccaneers.

The most impressive showing by any quarterback on Sunday has to have been Lamar Jackson playing for the Baltimore Ravens against the hapless Dolphins.  Granted that Miami did not put up much of a defense to overcome, but Jackson went 17 for 20, threw 5 touchdown passes and racked up 324 yards in the air.

While it does not happen very often, ties are still possible in the NFL.  The Arizona Cardinals hosted the Detroit Lions in Glendale and the two teams played to a 24-24 tie at the end of regulation play and then each team could only manage a 3 point field goal in overtime resulting in a 27-27 tie.

For the night game the Pittsburg Steelers would have been better on getting lost on route to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough the way the game turned out.  Ben Roethlisberger and company only scored one meaningless field goal in the third quarter while Tom Brady and the finely tuned Patriots put up 33 points behind Brady’s 341 yards passing and 3 touchdowns.

And we still have two NFL games on Monday night!

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