Quarterback is unquestionably the most important position in football, but at least two teams in the NFL are trying to win without one. Sure, there’s someone under center for the Chicago Bears and Jacksonville Jaguars, and yes, they occasionally throw passes, but both teams are aiming to throw as infrequently as possible.
It was exactly what the Cowboys failed to do in their 42-17 loss to the Broncos. Denver’s game plan was to force Dak Prescott to pass, and the Broncos were able to lock in on that because they completely shut Elliott down. It’s much more difficult for defenses to contain this balanced Dallas offense.
Elliott’s 219 combined yards — 147 rushing, 72 receiving — and three touchdowns were the most he’d had in a single game as a pro. His stat sheet doesn’t tell the whole story, though:
All four of Jacksonville’s wins have been by at least 20 points. To put that in perspective, the team had three such wins over the previous seven seasons.
And the Jaguars feel like they should be 5-1. They gave up 17 points on three special teams blunders in a 27-17 home loss to the Los Angeles Rams in Week 6. Two weeks before that, they gave up 17 points on three running plays totaling 177 yards in a 23-20 overtime loss at the New York Jets. Those included a 75-yard TD run in which defenders failed to touch Bilal Powell when he fell to the turf.
84.0 percent. The AFC East might look closer than ever in the standings, but FPI still indicates the Patriots are the clear favorites to win the division. It’ll take some big efforts from the Bills, Dolphins or Jets to top the team that has won 14 of the past 16 division titles.
86.4 percent. Carson Wentz leads the NFL in passing touchdowns (17) and already has surpassed his TD total from last season (16). He also has led the Eagles to their best start since 2004 and has given them the best chance of winning the NFC East.