Cardinals 24, Dolphins 21: Great signs from Ryan Tannehill despite loss.
It's hard to ever feel good about a 1-3 record, but there's plenty of things going right for the Dolphins. In their second consecutive loss that required extra time to decide, Ryan Tannehill threw a key interception in overtime that gave the Cardinals field position near mid-field.
The mistake by the rookie proved costly and Jay Feely ended the game with a 45-yard field goal seven plays later, giving the Dolphins their third loss of the season. A loss that will again leave Miami fans with a bad taste in their mouth, but looking past that, there are some very good things to hang their hat on.
Namely, the performance of Tannehill. While the rookie threw two interceptions, including a very costly one in overtime, he was very decisive as he picked apart one of the NFL's best defenses and avoided fairly consistent pressure from the Cardinals' defensive line. He finished 26-of-41 passing with 431 yards through the air and one touchdown in what was the best Week 4 performance of the three NFL quarterbacks in Florida.
While four turnovers was a costly stat for the Dolphins, also difficult to overcome were the number of plays the team ran for negative yardage. Tannehill was sacked four times and that hurt, but another four negative runs by Reggie Bush cost the Dolphins an additional 19 yards.
The negative plays often stunted drives that began very successfully and didn't allow the Dolphins to translate 480 total yards of offense (183 yards more than the Cardinals) into more than 21 points.
Redskins 24, Buccaneers 22: Is Josh Freeman on the hot seat in his fourth season?
In Week 3 the Buccaneers had a truly terrible offensive performance as they managed to gain only 166 yards of total offense and the Tampa Bay receivers were completely shut down by the Dallas Cowboys defensive backs. The good news for the Bucs is that in Week 4, the receivers looked much better and were able to help the team get over 300 yards of total offense.
The bad news? Josh Freeman.
For a quarterback in year four, he certainly doesn't look like he's made enough progress to inspire the Buccaneers to put their full faith in him. Yes, he absolutely has a cannon of an arm that made him the first-round pick in 2009, and he used that big arm to bring the Buccaneers back late in the game, but the 21-3 hole dug by the team had a lot to do with his inaccuracy across the middle of the field and hesitance in the pocket.
With every reason to have a better season than last year, he has seemingly regressed and doesn't resemble the decisive quarterback that had the NFL's No. 6 quarterback rating and led the Buccaneers to a 10-6 record in 2010.
Now with a 1-3 record, the seat for Freeman may be getting warm as he's not the reason the Buccaneers are losing, but he's not exactly helping them either.
Hmm ... what did the Jaguars do well in their Week 4 loss to the Bengals? Well, to be frank, absolutely nothing.
They were thoroughly outmatched on both sides of the ball and were demolished by a team that shouldn't have been nearly as successful as they were against the Jags.
Andy Dalton is an accurate quarterback with a strong future, so it's not surprising that he was able to connect with a tremendously talented wide receiver like A.J. Green as often as he was – especially considering the Jaguars often had 32-year old Rashean Mathis, fresh off an offseason that included recovering from ACL surgery, trying to stay step-for-step with the 24-year old phenom receiver.
What was concerning for the Jaguars defense was the complete lack of a pass rush for a fourth consecutive week and continued struggles to stop the run. Yet, as much as the Jaguars' defense struggled, the performance by the offense was even worse.
Against a defense missing four cornerbacks, including both of their starters and leaving just three active for Sunday's game, the Jaguars' receivers were once again unable to find any separation. The issues were compounded by the fact that the left guard position was absolutely terrible with Eben Britton and Mike Brewster both filling the role. Five of the six sacks of Blaine Gabbert came from that spot.
The consistent pressure destroyed any semblance of a deep passing game. While Gabbert was able to complete over two-thirds of his passes in a game for the first time in his career, he couldn't break the 200-yard mark and managed to lead the Jaguars to just 10 points.
Things for Jacksonville will need to change fast or there will be massive changes for the team yet again.