SportsPulse: Have we got into the Super Bowl of the Saints-Patriots? Trysta Krick recaptures a full 9th Week that saw New Orleans and New England continue their sovereignty.
November's first weekend football was featured as salivating matchups, splitting enemies facing away in key races, and a two-game historic match from the game is best to ever play.
Here are the winners and losers of week 9:
Tom Brady: He missed the first matchup against Aaron Rodgers in 2014, but he snapped the second as well the Patriots defeated Packers, 31-17, in a match that did not respond enough to the hype. Still, it was a victory in which his connection to receiver Josh Gordon (five catches for 130 meters and a score) took the next step. That Brady and the offense struck despite not having a tight end Rob Gronkowski, running behind Sony Michel and Shaq Mason guard showed that New England is steadily improving as the year arrives. In fact, with the game tied at 17 after three quarters, Brady scored an excellent pass score of 158.3 in the fourth quarter at 6 of 6 passing through 104 yards and a touchdown. Now, the Pats are 7-2 and keep up with the top 8-1 Chiefs of the AFC.
Saints of New Orleans: An aristocratic five-year day in the red zone sparked the Saints in a huge victory with 45-35 against the previously undefeated Rams. Alvin Kamara set his career on the lead (3) before half-time. Drew Brees was a surgeon. New Orleans' defense has been strengthened and its offense – behind Brees, Kamara, receiver Michael Thomas and pioneering coach Sean Payton – may be the most dangerous in the championship. This game could well be a tiebreaker that defines the advantage of the home match at all the playoffs. And in Superdome, the Saints are close to the unstoppable.
Winners of the split games: Four of the seven early shale games were among division rivals, and in particular Steelers (over Ravens), Panthers (over Buccaneers) and Viking (over Lions) were critical to play- of. With the Bengals in the past, Pittsburgh (5-2-1) fell to the top spot. With the Saints winning the Rams to move to 7-1, the Panthers (6-2) had to keep their pace at NFC South and drive wild cards. And Minnesota – thanks to a franchise – the top ten bags against Matthew Stafford – now has the chance to claim NFC North after his bout next week when he faces the Bears star in the 11th week.
Chargers Los Angeles: They have lost two of their first three races, but have won five consecutively – having overtaken the Seahawks, 25-17, on the road – for their better start (6-2) since 2006. Quarterback Philip Rivers is effectively expanding Melvin Gordon carries the load and the defense improves every week – even without a defensive final Joey Bosa, who is injured in a foot injury. If it was not for the leaders and their hot start up to the year, more people would talk about the chargers. But do not make any mistake, it is a group that you need to worry about stretching. Now if they could only correct their plight.
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Baltimore Ravens: They have lost three in a row and four of the last five after falling their game against Steelers, 23-16. An NFL Network report suggested coach John Harbaugh could be fired soon. Baltimore's deep game, which helped him break into a hot start this season, vanished and his defense gave a steady stream of explosive games in recent weeks. Ravens can move on to Joe Flacco at the end of the 2019 season, Eric DeCosta will replace Ozzie Newsome as general manager at the end of this year, and if he changes a coaching change, he could be a rebuilding team.
Dirk Koetter: He kicked off his aggressive coach, put his alleged coach, and even went for a fake bet that failed from the Buccaneers' 26 corners line with a loss of 42-28 against the Panthers. Koetter seems to be trying to do something to cause some change, but nothing works. Traders (the second did not put his opponent and did not lose the lower part of the championship to minus-15) are still a problem, Tampa dropped to 3-5, and Keetter looks more like a head coach whose job is in risk.
New York Jets: Speaking of coaches who may be in danger of losing their job, Todd Bowles's Jets resembled homeless men in a 13-6 loss against dolphins. In particular, it is New York's offense – and the stagnation of the hilarious development of Sam Darnold – is worrying. Dolphins chose Darnold four times (one of which was returned for a TD) and prevented him from throwing a score. In the last three games, Darnold threw just two touchdowns against seven spades. His 14 interventions are the most in the NFL. It seems uncomfortable in the pocket and his races send the jets falling under the East AFC.
Protecting Redskins: They entered the 9th week in the NFL fourth place in total defense (322.4m from a game), the second in defense in the momentum (80.1m a game) and the fifth in defense (19.1 points a game). At the beginning of the third quarter of his loss of 38-14 against Falcons, Washington allowed Atlanta to eliminate all three. Falcons finished with 491 yards in total and 154 rushed. Cornerback Josh Norman took advantage of the game and Washington bamboo could be devastating. If the Cowboys win Monday night, both Dallas and the Eagles – who were on their minds – would only be a game back at NFC East.
Follow US TODAY Sports Lorenzo Reyes on Twitter @LorenzoGReyes.
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