Photo via CBS Sports
Week 5 of the NFL season has concluded, albeit a day later than usual. Due to positive COVID-19 tests from the Tennessee Titans, they had to play their game against the Buffalo Bills on Tuesday night. After a wild and chaotic week in the NFL, here are my takeaways from Week 5 as we transition into Week 6.
- Jerry Jones needs to pay Dak Prescott
Everyone in the NFL community came together in support of Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback Dak Prescott as he suffered a gruesome season-ending ankle injury Sunday against the New York Giants. It was devastating to see in part because Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones has refused to give Dak a long-term contract.
This offseason, he was given the franchise tag and now, suffered a season-ending injury without a long-term contract or guaranteed money after this season. Jones got heaps of criticism after the injury and for good reason. Dak has proven himself to be the franchise QB and he doesn’t have a future set in stone with the team as the possibility of him leaving the Cowboys is possible.
There are two options for Dak going forward: accept a one-year contract to increase his value after his injury or Jones should do the right thing and give Dak a long-term contract. Dak has given everything for the franchise and it’s time for Jones to take care of Dak when he needs it now.
2. Stop sleeping on the Tennessee Titans
It is mind boggling to me how a team who finished last season 7-3 after switching QBs and made the AFC Championship game was overlooked as an AFC contender and by some, even a playoff team. Ryan Tannehill has thrown 36 touchdowns and seven interceptions with 3,971 yards since taking over as the Titans’ starting QB Week 7 of last season. The Titans have gone 13-4 with him as the QB, yet the Titans are an afterthought in the big picture of the championship chase.
This came to afront Tuesday night as despite not practicing the past two weeks, they throttled the previously undefeated Buffalo Bills 42-16 as Tannehill threw three more touchdowns without wide receivers Adam Humphries and Corey Davis and ran for another. While Derrick Henry has been a huge reason for the Titans’ success, Tannehill has been just as vital. The Titans should not be counted out in the Super Bowl discussion as they are for real. It would not surprise me if the Titans face the Kansas City Chiefs again in the AFC Championship game.
3. The Las Vegas Raiders are dangerous
The Chiefs were easily the best team the first four weeks of the season and after demolishing the Baltimore Ravens 34-20 on Monday Night Football, 16-0 seemed like a possibility. However, the Raiders came into Arrowhead Stadium at Kansas City and ended those possibilities along with their 13-game winning streak.
The Raiders were explosive on offense, gaining 490 total yards as Derek Carr hit Henry Ruggs III and Nelson Agholor on deep touchdown passes. They only turned the ball over once and were aggressive on defense, slowing down the Chiefs’ offense in the second half. They played a great game and head into their bye week looking to heal up as wide receiver Bryan Edwards has been out and left tackle Trent Brown and Ruggs have dealt with injuries. Once they return to action, expect them to be a tough out going forward.
4. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers need discipline
Last season, the Cleveland Browns were a major disappointment in large part due to their vast amount of penalties. They were undisciplined and often hurt themselves with untimely penalties. This season, the team whose been sabotaging their chances with penalties the most has been the Buccaneers.
They lead the NFL in penalties with 42 and are second behind the New Orleans Saints in penalty yards with 410. In their 20-19 loss Thursday Night to the Chicago Bears, 12 penalties were accepted for 114 yards, some of which killed promising drives and extended Bears drives. Tom Brady must wish he was coached by Belichick this season as the New England Patriots did not pick up a single offensive penalty until the fourth quarter of their 26-10 Week 4 loss at Kansas City. If the Bucs are going to be taken seriously, they must cut down on the penalties.