Thoughts From Sunday’s Action in the National Football League

Chiefs and Broncos
I expect the Chiefs to play better in two weeks when the host the Broncos.

I’ll get this off my chest right away. The officiating in the Denver-Kansas City game Sunday night was embarrassing yet it’s exactly what the league offices want. If you watched the first half of the Broncos 27-17 win over previously unbeaten Kansas City then you should know what I’m talking about. There were at least a half dozen defensive holding or defensive pass interference calls in that half and while some were legitimate, some were not.

It didn’t stop there though. You probably heard that the Chiefs’ vaunted pass rush was held without a sack and that Peyton Manning had nary a grass stain on his uniform. Much of the credit is going to the Denver offensive line but how about a tip of the hat to the referee and umpire? The offensive holding that took place and was never called was further proof that the National Football League wants offense plain and simple.

This game comes on the heels of the NFL floating an idea to protect the quarterback even more b7 2017. At what point does it end? Are we headed for just nothing more than a 7-on-7 drill? It’s obvious the NFL wants to increase viewership through offense which also means fantasy football players benefit as well.

I’d have a lot more respect for the league if they just came clean and said this is exactly what they are going for but I’m not going to hold my breath.

Brooks' hit on Brees was about as borderline as it gets.

The NFC West is just another week or two away from being claimed by Seattle who moved to 10-1 on the season with a convincing win over Minnesota Sunday. That might not really be the story though as San Francisco has now dropped into a tie with Arizona at 6-4. The two teams have one meeting remaining and that’s in the final week of the season.

The 49ers played about as well as you can in the SuperDome Sunday without actually winning. They dropped a very difficult 23-20 game to the Saints and it wasn’t without controversy. As New Orleans drove for the tying field goal, Niners linebacker Ahmad Brooks caught Drew Brees high around the shoulder and neck area. Brees fumbled and it was recovered by the Niners.

The flag came out however and Brooks was hit with a personal foul. The Saints got a new life and took advantage of it. Right now, San Francisco is looking at nothing more than a wild-card because Seattle isn’t going to fall apart down the stretch. The problem is that the 49ers could be competing with as many as six teams for one of those two wild-card spots.

Their schedule looks favorable as they have games left with St. Louis, Tampa Bay and Atlanta plus a home game with Seattle who could be resting players by then for all we know. Regardless, the Niners have work to do if they hope to return to the playoffs.

If you needed any more proof that a quarterback is vital to a team’s success then look no further than Green Bay. The Packers have lost three straight (most recently Sunday against the Giants) without Aaron Rodgers and can expect to be without him at least one more week which is a home game against Minnesota.

Speaking of the Giants, they are now 4-6 after starting 0-6 on the season. They are by no means out of the NFC East race either as Philadelphia sits at 6-5 and the Cowboys are just a game in front of them at 5-5. New York split the season series with the Eagles and they have a game remaining with Dallas on Sunday at MetLife Stadium. Don’t count the G-Men out just yet.