Monday Afternoon Quarterback

Joe WillettSenior Writer IOctober 13, 2008

What a horrible, horrible Sunday of NFL football.  Maybe I'm biased, because I'm a Bears fan, but that's just me.

I cheered with 11 seconds to go, and then Mike Brown made a mistake in coverage and let Roddy White get to the sidelines with one second left in the game. My heart was broken, but that was just one last-second finish that left some teams stunned and others jumping for joy.

The Miami Dolphins had their third straight victory all but complete from trick plays, like lining up Chad Pennington at receiver, then giving him the ball to throw to a wide open receiver for the touchdown.

However, Matt Shaub was back, and as the fourth quarter neared its end, ran a quarterback draw on the goal line to steal the victory from the grasp of the Dolphins, taking the Texans off the list of teams that don't have a win.

Another team that left that list of teams yet to win was the St. Louis Rams.  They looked to be down and out against the Washington Redskins; at least until they were set up for an easy field goal.

Then again, that easy field goal was made less easy when the Rams were hit with a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that made a 33-yard field goal a 48-yarder. Regardless, Rams kicker Josh Brown knocked it through the uprights for a 19-17 win.

The Lions were winless heading into their contest with the surprisingly bad Minnesota Vikings.  Why were the Lions winless, well it's because of plays like Dan Orlovsky running out of the back of the end zone completely on accident.

They looked like they were headed for a win, however, until Vikings kicker Ryan Longwell launched a 26-yard field goal with just seconds remaining in the game.  The Lions took a shot at the endzone but lost the game and stayed win-less.

Both the Cardinals and Cowboys had plenty of wins entering their game in Arizona Sunday afternoon.  J.J. Arrington started the game off right, returning the opening kickoff 93 yards to give the Cards an early 7-0 lead.

They led by 10 with 3:21 left when the Cowboys started the comeback.  Marion Barber made a couple moves on a simple check down and took it 70 yards to make it a three-point game at the two-minute warning.

With just seconds left, Tony Romo was attempting to spike the ball, but a Cardinals player was injured and couldn't get to the line of scrimmage in time.  The penalty cost the Cardinals five yards and made a 57-yard attempt a 52-yarder.

"I think we were about 60 yards offsides on the play," Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said.

Cowboys kicker Nick Folk barely made it past the uprights, and clearly didn't have the five yards to spare.  However, the Cardinals blocked a Cowboys punt in overtime and returned it all the way back for a touchdown, winning the game in overtime.

It was the first time in NFL history that a game ended on a blocked punt being returned for a touchdown.  Also, in overtime, Tony Romo broke his pinky and is out for four weeks, although there are whispers he may seek a second opinion.


In the rest of the NFL...

Peyton Manning appears to be back, throwing for 271 yards and three touchdowns against the stingy Ravens defense.  In that game, rookie Joe Flacco had just 30 fewer yards, but substituted an interception for each touchdown of Manning's.

The Patriots suffered a big defeat Sunday night at the hands of the Chargers, 30-10. Matt Cassell didn't appear up to par, completely missing a wide open Randy Moss for what would have been a touchdown.  Philip Rivers was spectacular, with over 300 yards and three touchdowns.

The Jaguars may have saved their season against the Broncos, winning 24-17.  David Garrard was clutch. He ran for a late first down on a third down, helping to ice the game, and he seems to be back to his old self, with one touchdown no interceptions.

We all though JaMarcus Russell was getting better, and I mean that completely in reference to his horrible performances becoming just bad ones, but he returned to his awfulness against the Saints with just 159 yards, no touchdowns, and a 40.1 QB rating in a 30-3 rout by the Saints.

The Seahawks had an early 10-3 lead, but scored just one more touchdown in a 27-17 loss to the Packers.

Jeff Garcia solidified that the quarterback position was his by playing mistake-free football in a 27-3 rout of the Panthers.


What to Look for Tonight

One of just two unbeaten teams plays tonight, as the undefeated Giants take on the 1-3 Browns on ESPN.

I completely expect Plaxico Burress to make this a statement game by putting up at least 20 fantasy points.  I don't just expect it, but I desperately need it.

The Browns have been a disappointment this season, not even playing close to expectations, where the Giants have been a surprise, playing way above expectations.



I'm Joe W.

Joe also writes for, a basketball fan's site.