Heroes – Eddie Lacy (105 RuYd, 27 ReYd, 2 TD), Jordy Nelson (66 ReYd, 1 TD), Randall Cobb (34 ReYd, 1 TD), Davante Adams (11 ReYd, 1 TD), Aaron Rodgers (156 PaYd, 3 TD), Matt Asiata (72 RuYd),
Zeroes – Christian Ponder (222 PaYd, 1 TD, 2 INT), Jerick McKinnon (24 RuYd, 22 ReYd)
The Packers jumped out to a 28-0 halftime lead and never looked back, with most of the Packers’ offensive starters being benched late third quarter with such a big lead. Eddie Lacy bounced back from a less-than-stellar start to his season as he picked up 91 of his yards between the tackles against the Vikings, where during his previous four starts this year he only averaged 37 yards. The real story, however, was the way the Packers’ defense stepped up with a TD, two INTs and six sacks on the night putting Aaron Rodgers and the offense in a great position to perform without pressure. Rodgers was able to complete 9-of-13 passes on Thursday for 116 yards and two TDs when the Vikings sent a standard pass rush.
Panthers – 31 (3-2), Bears – 24 (2-3)
Heroes – Cam Newton (255 PaYd, 9 RuYd, 2 TD), Greg Olsen (72 ReYd, 2 TD), Philly Brown (22 RuYd, 4 ReYd, 79-yard Punt Return TD), Chris Ogbonnaya (24 RuYd, 1 TD), Matt Forte (61 RuYd, 105 ReYd, 1 TD), Jay Cutler (289 PaYd, 22 RuYd, 3 TD, 2 INT), Alshon Jeffery (97 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Kelvin Benjamin (38 ReYd), Darrin Reaves (35 RuYd, 16 ReYd), Brandon Marshall (44 ReYd), Martellus Bennett (17 ReYd)
The Panthers were down by 14 points in the second quarter, but two TD passes to tight end Greg Olsen helped push the Panthers to victory over a Bears club that has had a difficult time holding a lead. While Jay Cutler had solid stats on Sunday (including a 10-yard rushing TD) he threw two costly interceptions, along with a lost fumble, that turned the momentum the Panthers way. The Panthers points in the fourth quarter came off two of the Bears turnovers. Cam Newton erased his early first-half struggles as he threw for 72 yards and a TD in the final drive before halftime.
Browns – 29 (2-2), Titans – 28 (1-4)
Heroes – Brian Hoyer (292 PaYd, 3 TD, 1 INT), Ben Tate (123 RuYd), Taylor Gabriel (95 ReYd), Travis Benjamin (48 ReYd, 2 TD), Jim Dray (25 ReYd, 1 TD), Justin Hunter (99 ReYd, 1 TD), Kendall Wright (47 ReYd, 2 TD)
Zeroes – Terrence West (31 RuYd), Isaiah Crowell (19 RuYd), Shonn Greene (36 RuYd)
Brian Hoyer certainly played the hero on Sunday facing the Titans as he led the Browns to a 25-point comeback win. This is the second 20-plus point comeback by Hoyer this season, although this one turned into a win for the Browns. Travis Benjamin was the main benefactor of Hoyer’s play as he scored on a 6-yard TD pass with just 1:09 left in the game. The loss by the Titans was the worst by a home team ever during an NFL regular season game.
Eagles – 34 (4-1), Rams – 28 (1-3)
Heroes – Jeremy Maclin (76 ReYd, 1 TD), Riley Cooper (33 ReYd, 1 TD), LeSean McCoy (81 RuYd), Austin Davis (375 PaYd, 3 TD), Brian Quick (87 ReYd, 2 TD), Kenny Britt (68 ReYd, 1 TD), Zac Stacy (42 RuYd, 36 ReYd)
Zeroes – Zach Ertz (39 ReYd), Tavon Austin (33 ReYd)
Austin Davis threw for almost 400 yards, but it wasn’t enough as the Eagles defense and special teams helped the club with 14 points of their own. LeSean McCoy had 24 carries for for 3.4 yards-per-carry, which isn’t anything special, although it certainly was better than his previous two-game production where defenses kept him from deciding the game. You can chalk some of the Eagles’ success on the ground in Week 5 (145 total rushing yards) to the return of tackle Lane Johnson from suspension.
Giants – 30 (3-2), Falcons – 20 (2-3)
Heroes – Andre Williams (65 RuYd, 18 ReYd, 1 TD), Odell Beckham, Jr. (44 ReYd, 1 TD), Rueben Randle (33 ReYd, 1 TD), Julio Jones (105 ReYd), Antone Smith (83 ReYd, 1 TD), Devonta Freeman (38 RuYd, 44 ReYd), Steven Jackson (37 RuYd, 37 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Victor Cruz (22 ReYd), Larry Donnell (0 ReYd), Roddy White (26 ReYd), Devin Hester (16 ReYd)
The Falcons have had a rough time of it on the road over their last two games, in which part could be blamed on a banged-up offensive line. The Giants rush defense made some very timely plays while Eli Manning played turnover-free football, as he took advantage of rookie Odell Beckham, Jr. for a 15-yard fourth quarter TD pass. It was Beckham’s first NFL game after struggling from hamstring issues the first four weeks of the season. Interesting game stat: Julio Jones was targeted 11 times in the first half of the contest.
Saints – 37 (2-3), Buccaneers – 17 (1-4)
Heroes – Drew Brees (371 PaYd, 2 TD, 3 INT), Khiry Robinson (89 RuYd, 8 ReYd, 1 TD), Pierre Thomas (35 RuYd, 77 ReYd, 2 TD), Travaris Cadet (19 ReYd, 1 TD), Vincent Jackson (144 ReYd), Louis Murphy (35 ReYd, 1 TD), Bobby Rainey (21 RuYd, 21 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Jimmy Graham (36 ReYd)
The Saints got an overtime tackle-breaking 18-yard rushing TD from running back Khiry Robinson to beat the Buccaneers on Sunday afternoon. The Bucs had a 31-20 fourth quarter lead but couldn’t keep Drew Brees and company from tying the game to send it to overtime. Brees took advantage of his running backs in the passing game as he threw for 104 yards on 12-of-15 passes, while going 8-of-8 for 60 yards and one TD on screen passes in Sunday’s overtime win.
Cowboys – 20 (4-1), Texans – 17 (3-2)
Heroes – Tony Romo (324 PaYd, 2 TD, 1 INT), Dez Bryant (85 ReYd, 1 TD), DeMarco Murray (136 RuYd, 56 ReYd), Terrance Williams (71 ReYd, 1 TD), Arian Foster (157 RuYd, 15 ReYd, 2 TD)
Zeroes – Ryan Fitzpatrick (154 PaYd, 1 INT), Andre Johnson (58 ReYd)
The Cowboys have improved their division-leading 4-1 record (tied with the Eagles) with excellent all-around play, although they continue to ride running back DeMarco Murray and the rushing game as they ran on 22-of-32 first-down plays including 93 of Murray’s 136 rushing yards. Tony Romo continues to perform well under pressure as he completed two major passes, one for a 37-yard overtime pass to Dez Bryant that set up the game-winning field goal. Ryan Fitzpatrick couldn’t get anything going in the game, even with Arian Foster’s dominant performance. Interesting game stat: Tony Romo has five INTs on the year, four of which were targeted to Dez Bryant.
Bills – 17 (3-2), Lions – 14 (3-2)
Heroes – Dan Carpenter (58-yard last-second field goal), Sammy Watkins (87 ReYd), Fred Jackson (49 RuYd, 58 ReYd, 2-Pt Conv.), Kyle Orton (308 PaYd, 1 TD, 1 INT), Golden Tate (134 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – C.J. Spiller (8 RuYd, 25 ReYd), Reggie Bush (13 RuYd, 30 ReYd), Calvin Johnson (7 ReYd), Matthew Stafford (221 PaYd, 1 TD, 1 INT)
Dan Carpenter hit a last-second 58-yard field goal to beat the Lions in Detroit on Sunday. It was the Lions sixth loss by three points or less since the start of the 2013 season, as the Bills defense was able to keep Matthew Stafford at bay with six sacks and only allowing one TD pass. Calvin Johnson left the game early in the third quarter after aggravating his ankle injury, while Reggie Bush also injured his ankle and did not finish the game.
Colts – 20 (3-2), Ravens – 13 (3-2)
Heroes – Andrew Luck (312 PaYd, 2 TD, 2 INT), T.Y. Hilton (90 ReYd), Dwayne Allen (59 ReYd, 1 TD), Ahmad Bradshaw (68 RuYd, 17 ReYd), Reggie Wayne (77 ReYd), Justin Forsett (42 RuYd, 55 ReYd, 1 TD), Owen Daniels (70 ReYd)
Zeroes – Trent Richardson (37 RuYd, 10 ReYd), Joe Flacco (235 PaYd, 1 INT), Lorenzo Taliaferro (18 RuYd), Torrey Smith (38 ReYd), Steve Smith, Sr. (34 ReYd)
Colts quarterback Andrew Luck didn’t have a spectacular day, but he did pass and rush for one TD each in the victory over the Ravens on Sunday. The Colts defense came up big, while Luck managed the clock efficiently even though the Colts turned the ball over four times (two INTs, two fumbles). One of those turnovers was by Ahmad Bradshaw, with the Colts giving him the bulk of the RB rushes (15 out of 24) while Trent Richardson snagged the rest. Joe Flacco was sacked four times by the Colts defense and was under pressure or sacked on 26 percent of his dropback pass attempts.
Steelers – 17 (3-2), Jaguars – 9 (0-5)
Heroes – Le’Veon Bell (82 RuYd, 36 ReYd), Antonio Brown (84 ReYd), Josh Scobee (3 FG)
Zeroes – Heath Miller (46 ReYd), Markus Wheaton (17 ReYd), Blake Bortles (191 PaYd, 2 INT), Toby Gerhart (9 RuYd, 20 ReYd), Allen Hurns (26 ReYd), Allen Robinson (51 ReYd), Storm Johnson (27 RuYd)
Rookie Blake Bortles had a rough afternoon against the Steelers. You have to figure it’s part of the growing process, although the Steelers defense played very well after losing last week to the Buccaneers as they held the Jaguars under 250 total yards on the day. If there’s one positive to take away for the Jaguars, their defense played surprisingly well considering their rough patch of games and points allowed this year.
Broncos – 41 (4-1), Cardinals – 20 (3-1)
Heroes – Peyton Manning (479 PaYd, 4 TD, 2 INT), Demaryius Thomas (226 ReYd, 2 TD), Emmanuel Sanders (101 ReYd), Julius Thomas (66 ReYd, 2 TD), Andre Ellington (32 RuYd, 112 ReYd, 2 TD)
Zeroes – Montee Ball (7 RuYd), Drew Stanton (118 PaYd), Larry Fitzgerald (57 ReYd), Michael Floyd (7 ReYd)
The story: Peyton Manning is good. I guess we all knew that already, as Manning and Demariyus Thomas both had superhero games against the Cardinals on Sunday. Thomas broke a franchise record with 226 yards receiving, while Manning, the future Hall-of-Famer, threw his 500th career TD pass and also tallied a career-high with 479 yards passing. Montee Ball left game early in the third quarter with a groin injury and may not return for a few weeks. Drew Stanton and the Cards never really threatened the Broncos, although Andre Ellington had a superb game as a receiver out of the backfield.
49ers – 22 (3-2), Chiefs – 17 (2-3)
Heroes – Frank Gore (107 RuYd), Phil Dawson (5 FG), Stevie Johnson (9 ReYd, 1 TD), Jamaal Charles (80 RuYd), Travis Kelce (15 ReYd, 1 TD), De’Anthony Thomas (17 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Michael Crabtree (16 ReYd), Knile Davis (6 RuYd), Dwayne Bowe (42 ReYd)
Colin Kaepernick took advantage of the Chiefs when they sent five rushers or more as he went 6-for-10, throwing for 129 yards when being blitzed. Frank Gore was successful on the ground as he ran of over 100 yards as he averaged 4.8 yards per carry before taking any sort of contact, while the 49ers relied heavily on kicker Phil Dawson after not being able to punch their drives into the end zone aside from a Stevie Johnson TD pass. The Chiefs were not able to capitalize when given the chance and were a bit too conservative in their play calling.
Chargers – 31 (4-1), Jets – 0 (1-4)
Heroes – Philip Rivers (288 PaYd, 3 TD, 1 INT), Branden Oliver (114 RuYd, 68 ReYd, 2 TD), Antonio Gates (60 ReYd, 2 TD)
Zeroes – Eddie Royal (40 ReYd), Keenan Allen (25 ReYd), Geno Smith (27 PaYd), Chris Ivory (44 RuYd), Chris Johnson (24 RuYd)
Philip Rivers continues to answer his detractors questions as he and the Chargers destroyed the Jets with efficient offensive production, while rookie Branden Oliver ran and caught passes totaling 182 yards. The Chargers offensive line opened up holes for Oliver against the Jets rush defense, which was league best coming into Week 5 (63.3 YPG). Antonio Gates made his presence known again as he caught two red zone passes for touchdowns. The Jets quarterbacks, Geno Smith and Michael Vick, only had one on-target pass that traveled more than 10 yards downfield although it was actually intercepted.
Patriots – 43 (3-2), Bengals – 17 (3-1)
Heroes – Tom Brady (292 PaYd, 2 TD), Stevan Ridley (113 RuYd, 1 TD), Rob Gronkowski (100 ReYd, 1 TD), Shane Vereen (90 RuYd, 18 ReYd), Tim Wright (85 ReYd, 1 TD), A.J. Green (81 ReYd, 1 TD), Mohamed Sanu (70 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Julian Edelman (35 ReYd)
The Bengals never really had a chance in this game as Tom Brady and the Patriots came out of the gate with a 10-play, 80-yard TD drive that ate up five minutes of the clock. They also had 156 rushing yards before contact, which created successful play action plays for Brady. The Bengals turned the ball over three times with three lost fumbles. The Patriots defense, most notably Darrelle Revis, kept A.J. Green in check until Revis left the game with injury.
Thanks for tuning in and I’ll see you for Week 6! And, don’t forget that you can catch me on Twitter @TheRolyPolyBoy