We nearly didn’t have a week four but in the end, things fell our way and another fantastic week of football is in the books.
Just a month into the season, Houston said enough is enough for head coach/general manager Bill O’Brien and he was removed from his position following his team’s home loss to what was an 0-3 Minnesota unit.
Between the white lines, we saw much of the same as unbeaten powerhouses – Green Bay, Kansas City and Seattle as well as comeback kids Pittsburgh and the new leaders of the AFC East, Buffalo.
Here are the six things that caught our eye in week four of the NFL…
BYE BYE BILL… WHO’S NEXT?
Bill O’Brien traded DeAndre Hopkins away – mistake. Houston has the largest payroll of any team in the NFL, with O’Brien also the team’s general manager – error. The Texans lost to the 0-3 Vikings at home – bye bye Bill.
O’Brien makes way. Defensive end JJ Watt said ‘something needs to change’ after the loss to Minnesota and team brass acted swiftly.
The question is, who’s next? Falcons coach Dan Quinn only just survived the axe last season and Atlanta is also 0-4 with some gut-wrenching losses.
Adam Gase surely has to be in some trouble whilst first-year coach Mike McCarthy would not want to drop too many more games otherwise Jerry Jones may just overreact.
We’ve mentioned Aaron Rodgers in this column before but they way he is playing at the moment requires circling back.
Rodgers’ form had been waning for two seasons but he has begun 2020 in utter kill mode.
His latest masterpiece was a shredding of Atlanta’s awful defence, when he ripped them for 327 yards and 4 touchdowns – and he was seemingly always in second gear.
And, in frightening news for the rest of the NFL, his clearcut No. 1 target, DaVante Adams, is yet to return from a hammy strain.
Look out league!
Tennessee succumbed to COVID-19 with multiple players and staff testing positive to the dreaded virus.
That meant their clash with Pittsburgh was cancelled, then Cam Newton dropped a bombshell when he announced he’d tested positive as well.
Minnesota, Kansas City, New Orleans and Detroit are other teams directly or indirectly affected by virus fears.
I was concerned I’d be waking up early Monday morning to a postponed season. Those fears were not realised but you do get the feeling a league wide shutdown will happen at some point.
THE BROWNIES ARE BALLING
Cleveland are 3-1. I repeat, Cleveland – yes, the Browns – are three wins and just one loss.
Nick Chubb, the team’s workhorse back, will miss some time through injury but Kareem Hunt is a more than ample replacement.
Odell Beckham Jr blew up against Dallas, recording 81 receiving yards and two touchdowns plus 73 rushing yards from just two carries, including a 50-yard jet-sweep TD.
Baker Mayfield is playing controlled football. His numbers are far from eye-popping but the only numbers that matter in Cleveland are 3 and 1.
RAMSEY & TATE BLOW UP
In an ugly scene at SoFi Stadium in California, Rams corner Jalen Ramsey and Giants wideout Golden Tate exchanged blows before a wild all-in brawl ensued.
It was later revealed that Ramsey and Tate came to blows because of some off-field matters between the two. Matters which have nothing to do with football. It’s hard to be blaming Tate for what he did and Ramsey is entitled to hold his ground.
All in all, just ugliness that we could do without.
RAMPAGING ROOKIE RECEIVERS
Entering the recent NFL Draft, experts noted the depth and talent at wide receiver. The best wideout in college football had to return to school (Ja’Marr Chase, LSU) but the group of pass-catchers ready to jump to the league was big and good – real good.
Chase’s LSU team mate, Justin Jefferson, leads all rooks for yardage with 348 through four games whilst Dallas’ CeeDee Lamb is 13th among all players with 308 yards.
Jerry Jeudy has proven his worth despite QB woes in Denver and fellow Alabama stud Henry Ruggs has shone at times. Former Clemson Tiger, Tee Higgins, has outplayed his more experienced team mates with 117 yards and a pair of scores in his past fortnight.
It’s proving to be a deep and competent group, adding plenty to Fantasy Football leagues across the globe.