Not much has changed for the AFC West in week 3. The standings remain the same. Pat Mahomes is still on fire. The Raiders got melted. The Chargers are their own worst enemy and the Broncos… remain the Broncos.
Raiders @ Vikings
Vikings Win 34-14. Never count out the Vikings defense. They show up week in and week out and will give your team a hard time. The Raiders were no exception. The Vikings defense is allowing just under 16 PPG and they dominated the Raiders offense. Only 14 points were put on the board.
The Raiders were horrendous on 3rd down. Oakland only converted on three of their eleven third-down tries. This, in turn, helped create momentum for the Vikings offense. Dalvin Cook had a day with 143 total yards and a touchdown. The Vikings as a whole rushed for over 200 yards. All of these things put together results in the second straight loss for Oakland.
Player of the Game: LB Eric Wilson (11 Tackles, 2 Sacks, 2 TFL)
Ravens @ Chiefs
Chiefs Win 33-28. This was the game we had been waiting for all week. This looks like it could be a preview of a playoff matchup for years to come. Two young guns, Lamar Jackson and Pat Mahomes look to take the torch in this upcoming era for the NFL.
Jackson was not at his best on Sunday. The second-year QB completed around fifty percent of his passes and threw for zero TDs in Kansas City. He did have one rushing touchdown to contribute. Mark Ingram carried the load for this Baltimore offense as he continues to revive his career.
Pat Mahomes plays more like a machine than a man. The reigning MVP threw for three TDs, 374 yards alongside a passer rating of 132. The running back committee for the Chiefs continued to look amazing averaging 5.4 YPC with a 140-yard performance. Their defense was just enough to hold off a surging Ravens offense late.
Player of the Game: QB Pat Mahomes (3TDs, 374 yards, 132 RTG)
Broncos @ Packers
Packers Win 27-16. The Broncos continue to struggle on offense. Joe Flacco and company put up another mediocre offensive showing with only 16 points. They cannot count on their defense to do all the work for them. Although they allowed 27 points, the Broncos defense gave their offense more than enough opportunity to hang with the Packers throughout the game.
The Broncos pass protection is a large area of concern. Flacco was manhandled and sacked six times on Sunday. He threw one interception with zero touchdowns. Philip Lindsay carried the offense on his back or at least what little offense there was for him to carry. The second-year back rushed for 81 yards and a couple of touchdowns against the Pack. There is some light to show on this offense.
The Packers were perfect yet again as far as turnovers are concerned. This could have been the tipping point in the game for the Broncos who in turn gave up the ball three times. Turnovers will need to be addressed if this team wants to compete with their opponents.
Player of the Game: LB Preston Smith (5 tackles, 3 Sacks, 3 TFL)
Texans @ Chargers
Texans Win 27-20. The Chargers biggest issue facing them this season would be themselves. Dropped passes, untimely mistakes, penalties on scoring plays, etc. have all played an enormous role in the meltdown of the playoff Chargers. Philip Rivers and Keenan Allen could not have done any more. Rivers threw for 318 yards and Keenan Allen received 189 of those yards. These two need serious help. The coaching staff decided to abandon their running backs in the second half for some reason, although they have seen serious success throughout the season.
The Chargers defense was ugly and gave up big plays, but the Chargers offense is good enough to hang with any team that might challenge them to a shootout. They continue to shoot themselves in the foot and ruin every game for themselves. The Bolts were 5 for 15 on third down and only scored three points in the second half. Rivers was also sacked 5 times. This O-Line must protect an aging Rivers if they want any chance at a playoff run. Rivers put the team on his back yet again on the final drive and threw a game-tying TD pass right into the hands of Travis Benjamin but he dropped the pass yet again. The Chargers fell short offensively.
The Bolts really need to figure things out, because this is looking a lot like their 2015 and 2016 seasons where they were 4-12 and 5-11.
Player of the Game: QB Deshaun Watson (351 yards, 3 TDs, 135.8 RTG)