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Ten Thoughts on the NFL

Check out my Thoughts on the NFL this week and be sure to play along in the comment section with a few Thoughts of your own.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

1) Last week I wrote that I wasn't buying the Atlanta Falcons as a top echelon team just because they were undefeated, and now that they dropped a game to the previously 1 win New Orleans Saints, I think they'll start to fall back to the pack in the NFC South

2) But the other undefeated NFC South team, the Carolina Panthers, went onto Seattle and came back to beat the Legion Of Boom 27 to 23. Carolina was led by quarterback Cam Newton's stellar 4th quarter of 12 for 15, 162 yards, 1 TD, and a 133.9 passer rating. Prior to the final quarter, Newton was 8 of 21, for 107 yards and 2 interceptions (15.5 passer rating).

I know Seattle is struggling with just 2 wins, but that's still a tough place to play. Time will tell if the Seahawks can bounce back and get on a roll, but for now, it looks like an impressive win by the Panthers.

3) Speaking of impressive wins, Andy Dalton and the undefeated Cincinnati Bengals just keep on rolling, this time over the Bills in Buffalo.

Sure the Bills were without their #1 QB, but I don't think it would have slowed Dalton and his offense down.

Insert your yeah-buts here.

3a) The 6-0 Denver Broncos are winning in spite of Peyton Manning, who leads the league in interceptions. Their defense is just playing so good right now with 4 defensive TDs. I still think Manning has to learn how to Ortonize his game just a bit, so Denver can stay with the ranks of the undefeated.

3b) The Green Bay Packers win again, setting up a week 8 Sunday Night Football battle of the undefeateds when they visit the Broncos.

In an odd scheduling quirk, unblemished Green Bay, Denver and Cincinnati all have a bye on week 7. The other bye team this week, the struggling Chicago Bears.

3c) The New England Patriots got revenge on the Indianapolis Colts for tattling on their deflated balls, and the Pats are now scoring an impressive and league leading 36.6 points per game.

4) And if you watched the Sunday Night Football game, you'll know what the following video is in reference to.

If you somehow missed the most idiotic play in the history of the NFL, then imagine the above, but for reals.

5) How in the world did Landry Jones lead the Pittsburgh Steelers to a win over the Arizona Cardinals? Or more importantly, how did the Cardinals D not fluster a guy seeing his first NFL action?

6) The Miami Dolphins sure looked like a different team under the leadership of new interim head coach Dan Campbell.

Then again they were facing the Tennessee Titans.

But if Campbell can keep the Dolphins respectable, he may win over ownership with his passionate brand of smash mouth football, and end up having the team remove the interim label.

7) So is Colin Kaepernick back to being good now?

In the last two weeks, the San Francisco 49ers QB put up 602 yards passing with 4 TDs and no picks.

8) Bears' fans grew accustomed to Brandon Marshall praising his teammates by calling them the best around, or calling them future Hall Of Famers, so when he called his New York Jets' teammate Chris Ivory, the best running back in football, many just rolled their eyes and figured it was Brandon being Brandon.

But then Ivory followed up his 29 carry, 166 yard, 1 TD performance again the Dolphins, with a 20 carry, 146 yard, 1 TD, 3 catch for 50 yards day against Washington.

Ivory may not be the best back in the game today, but he's in the middle of a very good stretch.

8a) Marshall is playing some good football for the Jets too.

9) I don't think anyone wants to win the NFC East.

The Giants couldn't capitalize last night when the Eagles tried giving them the game. The Cowboys are struggling through some injuries and the Redskins are gonna Redskin themselves all year.

9a) Sticking with the Redskins, I thought this find from SB Nation was very interesting.

By now we all know that Washington head coach Jay Gruden wants nothing to do with Robert Griffin III as his QB, and instead chooses to go with Kirk Cousins at the position, even though Cousins has a career 24-27 TD-Int ratio, with a career 4.3 interception percentage.

And Gruden has an interesting way of critiquing his QBs in the media. After Cousins threw 2 picks on Sunday, Gruden talked about the wind.

"Yeah I don't know. I'll have to look at the film. Like I said - also, it was little windy. But, and also, [there was] a lot of pressure on him. There's a lot of things going on pre-snap that he's got to deal with, getting the formations and protections and all that. You know last week the Jets had about 15 cover-zeroes [all-out blitzes] against Miami, so we're always looking out for those and making sure he's aware of those. They played pretty vanilla today, and I think he hurried in some throws he didn't have to, or maybe he did. But I'll have to look at the film. But overall, you hate to pin this game on Kirk."

It was windy, he was pressured, he has pre-snap things he has to deal with, the Jets' vanilla D confused my little buddy, yada, yada, yada...

Now compare that coddling to what Gruden said about RGIII last year when he threw 2 picks against the Buccaneers.

"Robert had some fundamental flaws. His footwork was below average. He took three-step drops when he should have taken five. He took a one-step drop when he should have taken three on a couple occasions and that can't happen. He stepped up when he didn't have to step up, and he stepped into pressure. He read the wrong side of the field a couple times.

" ... it's not even close to good enough to what we expect from the quarterback position."

Last year during RGIII's crappy season, he finished with a 86.9 passer rating. So far, this year Cousins' passer rating is 77.4.

10) If Kyle Long isn't your favorite current Chicago Bear, then he has to be in your top 5.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">I played like dog shit today. Missed blocks, holding penalties. You should never hear my name. Sorry Chicago. You deserve great</p>&mdash; Kyle (@Ky1eLong) <a href="">October 19, 2015</a></blockquote>

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The above tweet came after the Bears lost on Sunday to the Lions.

Long gets it.

What jumped out to you the last week surrounding the NFL?