NFL winners and losers from Week 8, plus Bengals-Browns predictions and weekly grades for every team
Welcome to the Halloween edition of the Pick Six newsletter!
In honor of Halloween, I’ve decided to list off the three scariest things I saw on Sunday:
- The Raiders attempting to play football
- The Steelers attempting to play defense
- Zach Wilson attempting to play the role of an NFL quarterback
- The guy who blocked a field goal with his face (Watch here)
There were also some things that were scary good, like everything that Christian McCaffrey did during the 49ers‘ 31-14 win over the Rams. Another thing that was scary good was the costume I wore for our Week 8 recap podcast, which you can check out here.
Speaking of recaps, we’ll be covering everything that happened in Week 8, so let’s get to the rundown. Also, make sure to take a nap today, because things could get crazy over the next 24 hours. Not only do we have a Monday game tonight, but the trade deadline will be coming at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
If you need more Halloween in your life, we ranked the scariest receiving duos in the NFL,.
As always, here’s your weekly reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the Pick Six newsletter. To get your friends to sign up, all you have to do is click here and then share this link with them.
1. Today’s show: Week 8 winners and losers, plus full recap
It’s Monday, which can only mean one thing: I stayed up until 3 a.m. last night recording a podcast with Will Brinson and Ryan Wilson that touched on everything you need to know about Week 8, and let me just say, it’s probably for the best that you listen. We covered all 13 games from Sunday, which means we likely spent some time talking about your favorite team.
One thing we do every week is hand out our weekly winners and losers from Sunday’s action. Here’s a look at who made our list.
- Winner: John Lynch. The 49ers GM took a huge gamble last week when he decided to make a trade for Christian McCaffrey and that gamble is already paying off. Lynch looks like a genius after McCaffrey’s performance on Sunday in a 31-14 win over the Rams where he became just the fourth player since 1970 to record a rushing TD, a receiving TD and a passing TD in the same game. McCaffrey finished with 94 rushing yards, 55 receiving yards and 34 passing yards.
- Loser: Zach Wilson. The Jets‘ 5-2 start could end up going down drain if Wilson keeps playing the way he did on Sunday against the Patriots. The second-year quarterback threw three interceptions and was a big reason why New York lost 22-17. It’s not clear if Robert Saleh would consider a QB change, but he did bump Mike White up from No. 3 QB to No. 2, which might be his way of sending a message to Wilson. If you want to know why Wilson is struggling, you can .
- Winner: Arthur Smith. Going into the season, some people thought the Falcons had one of the worst rosters in the NFL. If that’s the case, then Smith should win coach of the decade because he has his team in first place after eight weeks.
- Loser: Eddy Pineiro and D.J. Moore. The Panthers could have been in first place if not for these two. Moore was almost the hero on Sunday after catching a 62-yard TD with 12 seconds left (You can see the amazing clip here). However, Moore immediately had his hero status revoked because he got flagged for excessive celebration, which moved Pineiro’s extra point back 15 yards. Not only did Pineiro miss the 48-yard extra point, but he also missed a 32-yard field goal that would have won the game in overtime and the Panthers ended up losing 37-34.
- Winner: Nathaniel Hackett. If the Broncos had lost on Sunday, there’s a 50% chance the team would have just left him in London, but he didn’t have to worry about that because the Broncos were able to pull out the 21-17 win against Jacksonville. The most encouraging part for Hackett is that the offense took a small step forward and if it continues to improve, the Broncos could sneak into the playoff race.
- Loser: Josh McDaniels. I don’t want to say the Raiders did a 24-hour bender on Bourbon Street before their 24-0 loss to the Saints, but that’s what it looked like. The Raiders were so bad that Mark Davis had a closed-door meeting with McDaniels after the game, which doesn’t seem like a good thing. McDaniels’ first season with the Raiders has slowly turned into a disaster.
Not only did we list our winners and losers, but we also recapped every game from Sunday. To listen to today’s episode, be sure to click here. You can also watch the entire episode on YouTube by clicking here.
2. Week 8 grades: Raiders get an ‘F’ for ugly loss, Lions get a ‘C’ as second half struggles continue
Every week I team up with six of my colleagues here at CBSSports.com to hand out grades, and this week, the Raiders got the lowest grade of any team in our imaginary football school.
Here’s a look at the grades from two notable games that were played Sunday:
Saints 24-0 over Raiders (Click here for full recap)
- Raiders grade: F. The Raiders were so bad in this game that giving them an ‘F’ is an insult to the letter ‘F.’ Derek Carr got benched in the fourth quarter on a day where the offense didn’t reach Saints territory a single time while he was in the game. The Raiders’ offensive failures led to the team’s first scoreless game since 2014. This was a nightmare loss for a team that’s now 2-6 and Josh McDaniels’ first season on the job is quickly spiraling out of control.
- Saints grade: A+. The Saints ended their two-game losing streak and they did it by destroying the Raiders in every way that one NFL team can destroy another team. The defense surrendered less than 200 yards while pitching a shutout for just the fourth time since 2000. Offensively, Alvin Kamara had his way with the Raiders. Not only did the Saints running back rush for 62 yards and a touchdown, but he also added 96 receiving yards and two touchdown catches. The Saints’ 3-5 record might be ugly right now, but the good news for New Orleans is that ugly can win the NFC South title. This was the Saints team everyone thought they were going to see when the season started and if they keep playing like this, there’s no reason they can’t win the division.
Dolphin 31-27 over Lions (Click here for full recap)
- Dolphins grade: B. The Dolphins found themselves in an early 14-0 hole, but they were able to dig themselves out of it thanks to the dynamic duo of Tyreek Hill (188 receiving yards) and Jaylen Waddle (106 yards and two touchdowns), who combined for 294 receiving yards. The two made life much easier for Tua Tagaovailoa, who targeted them with 23 of his 36 passes (Tua threw for 382 yards and three touchdowns). The Dolphins were nearly unstoppable on third down, converting 8 of 12 attempts, which included two different third-and-13 conversions. One reason the Dolphins were able to win this shootout is because their defense actually showed up for the second half. After surrendering 27 points in the first half, the Dolphins pitched a shutout over the final two quarters. This team is now rolling heading into November.
- Lions grade: C. This game looked like it was going to turn into a blowout win for the Lions after they took an early 14-0 lead, but for the third straight week, this team forgot how to play football in the second half. After scoring 27 points in the first half, the Lions got shut out in the second half, which continues an ugly trend for the Lions: They’ve now been outscored 48-0 in the second half over the past three weeks. Losing close gams to good teams was good enough for last year’s Lions, but it’s not good enough for this year’s group. Dan Campbell needs to figure out to get his team playing two good halves.
As for the other 22 grades we handed out on Sunday,.
3. NFL Week 8: Overreaction or reality
Everyone on the internet loves to overreact to things, and that’s especially true when we’re talking about the the NFL. With that in mind, Jeff Kerr decided to take a look at several things that happened around the NFL in Week 8 to decide if we’re all overreacting.
Situation: The Falcons are the best team in the NFC South.
Overreaction or reality: Reality. “Granted it’s the NFC South, but some team has to win this division. Why not the Falcons? Atlanta is a surprising 4-4 and the division leader after an overtime victory against the Carolina Panthers.”
Situation: The Seahawks are the best team in the NFC West.
Overreaction or reality: Overreaction. “Seattle deserves to be in this conversation after a convincing victory over the New York Giants, but the Seahawks will have a much tougher challenge in this division. The San Francisco 49ers are figuring things out with Christian McCaffrey and the team is getting healthier. The Seahawks aren’t going away in the NFC playoff race, but they’ll have a major challenger for the division in the 49ers.”
Situation: The Eagles will make it to 10-0.
Overreaction or reality: Reality. “Philadelphia is off to a 7-0 start, the best start for the franchise since 2004 — when the Eagles went to the Super Bowl. The question is: when will this team lose? The answer is that it probably won’t happen in the next three weeks with their next three games at Houston, vs. Washington and at Indianapolis. Good chance the Eagles get to 10-0.”
There are plenty more of overreactions from Week 8 and if.
4. 10 crazy facts from Week 8
Every Sunday night, I get an email from our research department here at CBS Sports, and every Sunday, that email always includes some amazingly wild facts about the games that were just played.
With that in mind, here are 10 crazy facts about Week 8:
- Bill Belichick is now the second-most winningest coach in NFL history. The Patriots’ win over the Jets marked the 325th victory of Belichick’s coaching career, which moves him past George Halas for the second-most in NFL history. The only coach with more is Don Shula and Belichick now needs just 23 more wins to pass the NFL legend.
- Christian McCaffrey hits the rare trifecta. The 49ers running back caught a touchdown pass, threw a touchdown pass and scored a rushing TD, making him just the fourth player since the 1970 merger to have a passing TD, rushing TD and receiving TD in the same game. Before McCaffrey, the last player to pull off the trifecta was LaDainian Tomlinson in 2005.
- Derrick Henry rushes his way into the record books. The Titans running back racked up 212 rushing yards and two touchdowns against the Texans, marking the sixth time in his career that he’s rushed for at least 200 yards with multiple touchdowns. To put into perspective how impressive that is, no other player in NFL history has even done that four times. Henry also hit the 200-yard mark for the sixth time, which ties him with Adrian Pederson and O.J. Simpson for the most in NFL history.
- Eddy Pineiro joins heartbreaking club. The Panthers kicker missed a potential game-winning extra point in the final 30 seconds of regulation and he missed a potential game-winning field goal in overtime. Pineiro joins Evan McPherson (Week 1, 2022) as the only kickers this century to miss game-winners in that situation (via ESPN Stats and Info).
- Lataivus loves London. The Broncos running back scored a touchdown against the Jaguars on Sunday, which is notable, because it made him the only player in NFL history to score a rushing touchdown in London for two different teams in the same season (Murray also scored a TD while playing for the Saints in a loss to the Vikings back in Week 4).
- Kamara can do everything. Although Kamara didn’t match McCaffrey’s trifecta, he did record a rushing TD and a receiving TD in the same game for the 10th time in his career. That’s the third most in NFL history, trailing only Marshall Faulk (15) and Brian Westbrook (12). Fittingly, McCaffrey also recorded his 10th game with a receiving and rushing TD on Sunday, which means the two guys are tied in the record book.
- Happy Birthday Marcus Mariota. The Falcons QB celebrated his 29th birthday on Sunday (Oct. 30) and he did it in grand fashion. Mariota threw three TD passes AND led a game-winning drive to become just the third player in NFL history to accomplish those things on his birthday. Warren Moon did it in 1990 and Russell Wilson accomplished it in 2015.
- Tyreek on verge of breaking a single-season record. It’s not every day you see a player get close to breaking a single-season record after just eight weeks, but Hill is getting close. The Dolphins receiver finished with 188 yards, marking the fourth time this year he’s topped 160 yards. That’s tied for the second-most in NFL history trailing only Roy Green, who topped 160 yards a total of five times in 1984. Hill could break this season-long record by Week 10 if he has two big games over the next two weeks.
- Cowboys need to feed Tony Pollard. The Cowboys running back has turned into a secret weapon of sorts for Dallas. Pollard had 15 touches for 147 total yards in Dallas’ 49-29 win over the Bears and the Cowboys are now 8-0 all-time when he gets at least 15 touches in a game. Not only that, but the Cowboys have averaged 37 points per game in those wins. Maybe they need to give the Pollard the ball more often (via NFL Research).
- Jalen Hurts makes Eagles history. The Eagles quarterback has won 10 consecutive starts, which is the longest streak in franchise history. Before beating the Steelers on Sunday, Hurt had been in a tie with several other quarterbacks, including Norm Van Brocklin, Donovan McNabb, and Carson Wentz.
If you see any other fun facts, feel free to tweet them at me.
If there’s a Halloween game in the NFL, you can bet the Bengals will be playing in it. With orange and black serving as the unofficial colors or Halloween, the NFL clearly loves scheduling the Bengals for this holiday. Tonight’s game will mark the fifth time since 2000 that the Bengals have played on Halloween. To put that in perspective, the Browns will be playing on Halloween for just the second time since 2000. On the Bengals’ end, they’re 0-4 in Halloween games since 2000 with all four losses coming by one score. As for the Browns, they’re 0-1.
If you want a spooky fact for Halloween, here’s one to consider: The Bengals have lost 12 straight road primetime games, which is the longest streak in NFL history. Ending that streak won’t be easy and that’s because they’ll be playing this game without Ja’Marr Chase.
My good buddy Jared Dubin wrote our deep-dive preview for this game here at CBSSports.com, and here’s how he sees the game playing out:
- Why the Bengals can win: Even with Ja’Marr Chase out, the Bengals should still be able to move the ball through the air thanks to the presence of Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd, who both rank in the top-20 in receiving yards this year. If the Bengals air attack gets bottled up, then they can turn to Joe Mixon, who should be able to gash up a Browns’ defense that’s surrendering more than 135 yards per game on the ground. Basically, the Bengals offense might not take a huge step back just because Chase is out.
- Why the Browns can win: The Browns have won four straight games in this series and one big reason for that is because of Nick Chubb. Although he did miss one game of those four games, he rushed for a total of 319 yards on 45 carries in the other three games combined. If you’re scoring at home, that’s 106.3 yards per game and MORE THAN seven yards per carry. If Chubb gets anywhere near those numbers tonight, then you have like the Browns’ chances of winning.
If you’re thinking about betting on the game, Tyler Sullivan put together a full gambling preview (odds via Caesars Sportsbook). You can check out Sullivan’s, but if you don’t feel like clicking over, here’s one prop from both of us for tonight’s game.
- ONE PROP Tyler LIKES: Joe Burrow OVER 0.5 interceptions (+118): “With Cleveland’s pass rush headlined by Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney, I think Burrow gets pressured into an interception in this game, and at +118, the value is enticing.”
- ONE PROP I LIKE: Cade York OVER 1.5 field goals (+120) or OVER 5.5 points (-135): I was going to take an Evan McPherson prop, but those haven’t been released yet, so I’m going to ride Cade York here. The Browns kicker is averaging 2.3 field goal attempts per game this year and I think that number might actually go up tonight since the Bengals have the second-best red zone defense in the entire NFL. If the Browns reach the red zone, there’s a good chance their drive will stall, which will lead to field goals for York. I like both of these props, but I like OVER 1.5 field goals more since the value is much better.
Finally, if you’re wondering who we’re picking, here’s who we have tonight in a game where the Bengals are currently favored by three points:
Dubin’s pick: Bengals 26-17 over Browns
Sullivan’s pick: Bengals 27-24 over Browns
My pick: Bengals 27-20 over Browns
Over on our CBSSports.com picks page, our experts have made a unanimous choice with all eight picking the Bengals to win and cover.
6. Rapid-fire roundup: Cooper Kupp injures ankle
It’s been a busy weekend in the NFL, and since it’s nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you.
- Cooper Kupp suffers ankle injury in loss to 49ers. The Rams season could go from bad to worse if Kupp has to miss any time. The receiver injured his ankle in the fourth quarter at a point in the blowout loss where he probably shouldn’t have still been in. The good news for the Rams is that Kupp believes he was able to escape without “too much damage done” to the ankle.
- Browns open to trading Kareem Hunt. The Browns running back asked to be traded in August and although the team turned him down at the time, it appears the Browns . According to ESPN.com, the Browns want a minimum of a fourth-round pick in return for Hunt, who’s in the final year of his contract.
- Texans could deal Brandin Cooks. One name to watch over the next 24 hours is Brandin Cooks. According to ESPN.com, the Texans are open to dealing their star receiver before the trade deadline. Of course, there is one hold up in any potential Cooks trade and that’s the fact that he has a fully guaranteed salary of $18 million in 2023. Most teams won’t want to pay that, which means we might not see a trade get done unless he’s willing to restructure his contract.
- Relaunched XFL announces the names of its eight teams. After a brief hiatus, the Rock is bringing the XFL back in 2023. The first step in the return was announcing the name and locations of the eight teams and here they are: Arlington Renegades, D.C. Defenders, Houston Roughnecks, Orlando Guardians, San Antonio Brahmas, Seattle Sea Dragons, St. Louis Battlehawks and Vegas Vipers. If you recognize some of those names, it’s because they were used during the XFL’s most recent season in 2020.
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