NFL

NFL Week 10 – Interesting Matchup Statistics, News and Notes

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We are now officially in the second half of the NFL season.

Entering Week 10, there are plenty of story lines to keep close attention to as the New England Patriots, Cincinnati Bengals and Carolina Panthers all look to remain unbeaten.

Rex Ryan returned to New York and the Detroit Lions are currently holding the rights to the first-overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.

Below are some interesting morsels for each matchup in Week 10.

 

Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Baltimore Ravens 

Jaguars: Blake Bortles has thrown 11 touchdown passes over the last four games which matches his entire rookie total from last season. Unfortunately, he has thrown seven interceptions over that four-game stretch and that ranks second worst in his career. Last year from Weeks 5-8, he threw eight interceptions.

Ravens: The Ravens enter Week 10 with no Steve Smith and it leaves a giant hole in the passing game. Kamar Aiken should assume the leading role for the most targets by quarterback Joe Flacco. Smith led the team with 73 targets before tearing his Achilles. Aiken was second with 44 targets, and should see his production increase, especially with Ravens making no attempt to address the position before the trade deadline.

 

Cleveland Browns vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

 Browns: Last season the Browns finished 7-9 and were competitive. While the focus was constantly on the quarterback position and Johnny Manziel, the defense kept Cleveland in each and every game. Currently, the Browns are 2-7 and rank 30th overall in points allowed and are allowing 27.4 points per game. Last season, they ranked ninth-overall and allowed 21.1 points per game.  It appears that quarterback isn’t the only issue in Cleveland, just the one that gets the most attention.

 Steelers: “When this week was on the schedule you knew you had to step it up,” said Jerome Bettis regarding the Baltimore Ravens. That feeling was once reserved for Pittsburgh’s Week 10 opponent the Browns. “The key to a rivalry is not the physicality of the game. The key to a great rivalry is when you go into the game you don’t know who is going to win.”

Since 1994, the Steelers lead the series with the Browns, 33-6, and the hottest ticket in town has became the ticket you give away so you can rake leaves in Western Pennsylvania.

 

Carolina Panthers vs. Tennessee Titans

Panthers: If you pay attention to the Panthers offense, it is easy to identify Greg Olsen as the team’s leading receiver. Can you name the second leading pass catcher in the Panthers offense? Unless you are Cam Newton or offensive coordinator Mike Shula, it will be difficult.  Ted Ginn Jr. is second on the roster with 21 catches as Olsen leads the team with 37.

Titans:  Rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota has thrown four touchdown passes in two of his first six games. Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino needed 19 games to reach the same mark.

 

Chicago Bears vs. St. Louis Rams

Bears: The Bears started the season 0-3 and looked like they were well on their way for picking first in the 2016 NFL Draft. They were outscored by 69 points over that three-game span, but have since buckled down defensively to go 3-2 in their last five games. More importantly, their last five games have been decided by 12 total points.

Rams: Tavon Austin has eight games to add to his career-high touchdown total (6). With eight games remaining, Austin has already surpassed his previous career high (5) and in doing so is making a modest impact in the formerly anemic St. Louis Rams offense.

 

Dallas Cowboys vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cowboys: Dallas has a lot of obstacles to overcome to get back into the NFC East division race (2-6) and regain the form they had last season when they won the division. One thing that looks reminiscent to last season is the current ground game. Darren McFadden has two 100-yard games over the last three games and the Cowboys are using him like they did DeMarco Murray last season by feeding him the football early and often, as McFadden has carried the football 76 times over the last three games. It is the first time in his eight-year NFL career he has had 20 or more carries in three straight games.

Buccaneers: Coaches hate turnovers and rookie quarterback had four of them in the teams Week 4 loss to the Carolina Panthers. Since that time, Winston has not thrown a single interception, going four games without giving up the ball to the opposing defense.

 

Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers

 Lions: The Lions didn’t have the opportunity to lose last weekend because they were on a bye. Detroit should be well on their way to 1-8 this weekend as they head to Green Bay to take on the Packers. Detroit is 1-24 over their last 25 games at Lambeau Field. The last time they won in Green Bay was on December 15, 1991.

Packers: Aaron Rodgers was not a happy camper last Sunday with his Packers dropping their second straight game. Rodgers does not lose often, especially in succession, and the last time he has lost three in a row was in 2008.

 

Miami Dolphins vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Dolphins: This is a little nugget I was very happy to come across when scouring the stats. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill is 1-5 after playing the Buffalo Bills, regardless if the Dolphins won or lost the game.

Eagles: Ryan Mathews is the offensive MVP so far, but still is stuck behind DeMarco Murray who has received nearly double the carries. Mathews has 67 carries for 409 yards and Murray has 106 for 390 yards.

 

New Orleans Saints vs. Washington Redskins

Saints: No one does it better than the Saints in allowing points to their opponents. New Orleans is generous in allowing a league high 268 points this season.

Redskins: DeSean Jackson had his first catch of the season last week versus the New England Patriots as he finished with three catches for 15 yards. Expect a different outcome this weekend against the Saints. The last time Jackson faced New Orleans (2012), he caught three passes for 100 yards and one touchdown for the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

Minnesota Vikings vs. Oakland Raiders

Vikings: The Vikings share an identical record with the Green Bay Packers at 6-2. Nothing else to add because it is pretty remarkable that the Vikings are tied for first place in the NFC North after eight games. Great job Coach Zimmer!

Raiders: The last time the Oakland Raiders were 5-4 was in 2008. Currently, the team is 4-4 and aiming to avoid a losing record. The Raiders are showing signs of improving and knocking off a quietly strong Vikings team would be a huge win.

 

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Chiefs: Alex Smith has more rushing yards (202) than C.J. Spiller (86) and Joique Bell (99) combined. Not exactly a ground breaking comparison, but is surprising to think that Smith is the NFL’s 53rd most successful rusher.

Broncos: Demaryius Thomas leads the Broncos with 61 catches, but only one has resulted in six points. Arizona Cardinals tight end Troy Niklas has caught three balls all season and two of those passes resulted in touchdowns.

 

New England Patriots vs. New York Giants

Patriots: The Patriots are 0-3 in their last three games against the New York Giants. Giants head coach Tom Coughlin definitely has his mojo going when he faces Bill Belichick.

Giants: Eli Manning is 5-6 overall in Week 10 over the course of his NFL career. He is 1-4 over his last five games in the 10th week of the NFL season.

 

Arizona Cardinals vs. Seattle Seahawks

Cardinals: The all-time series is tied at 16 games a piece. The Cardinals are 3-7 over their last ten games against the Seahawks.

 Seahawks: Expectations for tight end Jimmy Graham will be hard to achieve in the Seattle offense. It is no secret the Seahawks are a run-first and run-heavy oriented team. Graham does lead the team in catches (38) and tied for the team lead with two touchdown catches. Considering the circumstances, he is maximizing his opportunities in his new offense that requires him to block a lot more.

 

Houston Texans vs. Cincinnati Bengals

Texans: Running back Arian Foster and quarterback Brian Hoyer have the same exact yards per carry (2.6). Foster tore his Achilles and was placed on IR, ending his season. He’ll turn 30 next August and has not played a full 16-game schedule since 2012.

Bengals: Giovani Bernard has not started a game this season. That honor goes to Jeremy Hill with eight starts in eight games. Bernard is the teams leading rusher (511 yards) and leads the team in yards per carry (5.6). Hill has 344 rushing yards and is averaging 3.3 yards per carry. Bernard has also made his presence felt in the passing game with 21 catches compared to Hill’s five.


About Bo Marchionte

Bo Marchionte

Bo Marchionte is an NFL writer for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade. His background includes being staff for the Texas vs. The Nation All-Star game as a talent evaluator for player personnel along with an internship scouting with the Toronto Argonauts and Winnipeg Blue Bombers for the Canadian Football League. Bo’s draft background includes working for the NFL Draft Bible and currently owns and operates College2Pro.com. He has done radio spots on NBC, Fox Sports and ESPN and their affiliates in different markets around the country. Bo covers the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Panthers along with other colleges in the northeast.