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US Sports

03rd Oct 2022

Patrick Mahomes upstages Tom Brady to end controversial NFL week on a high


The Chiefs, and their star quarter-back, are heating up.

Tom Brady may have cost Patrick Mahomes his second Super Bowl winners’ ring, in early 2021, but neither the GOAT nor any other contender will stop the QB and his team if they can match the levels on display against Tampa Bay.

The fourth weekend of the NFL season saw some of the fancied and form sides show what they were about. It was a stretch of games that began with a definite Tua Tagovailoa concussion, and the QB is set to be pulled from action for a stretch.

We got the run-down on that, a couple of surprise results, and more, from David McDonnell of Smashmouting Football.

Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)

Another Sunday in the books and another footballing feast for the eyes with terrific action and close encounters right across the National Football League.

With the exception of the late, late contest between the Chiefs and the Bucs, the other 14 matches all were one-score games during the fourth quarter. There was even a point during the early kick-offs where all nine matches were one-score games in the fourth quarter at the same point in time.

Where in the world would you find this level of competition in professional sport?

The answer is, of course, is nowhere but in the NFL. It is the reason why supporters of gridiron tune in week in, week out as the action continues to deliver the goods.

Let’s start with one of the most anticipated match-ups, when Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson went head-to-head.

Bills @ Ravens 

By the beginning of the fourth quarter the game was tied 20-20, as this thoroughly entertaining contest was played out on soft ground and in heavy rain.

Both protagonists were to the fore.

Lamar Jackson helped the Ravens into an early lead when on his first drive, he took advantage of the short field, after an interception by Marlon Humphrey,  and shuffle-passed the ball to JK Dobbins for the opening touchdown. He then found Devin Duvernay with a heads-up play for another six-pointer.

At the end of the first half, Josh Allen kicked into action and led a drive which ended when he threw to Isiah McKenzie for a touchdown with 13 seconds left to make it 10-20 at the break.

Allen was immense after half time and grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck. He finished off the opening drive by taking off on a scramble to the left sideline and stepping inside the oncoming defenders for a touchdown to level the scores.

The game remained 20-20 as Lamar fired to Devin Duvernay, who brought the play up to the one-yard line. Three plays later and the Bills defence stood firm.

Then came a surprising call by Ravens coach, John Harbaugh, who turned down the chance  to take a three-point lead with the field goal and went for it on fourth down. Buffalo continued their goal-line stand as Baltimore’s 14-play drive ended with no points. Jackson’s next drive also ended in disappointment when Jordan Poyer got his second interception of the game with four minutes remaining.

Allen once again took centre stage and led his team down the field with superb quarterback play.

By the time the Bills were on the three-yard line, they had worked the clock down to three seconds remaining when Tyler Bass kicked them to victory with a field goal.

This was a terrific contest decided by small margins with great performances across both teams. It will be remembered as the biggest comeback victory of Josh Allen’s career to date as the Bills came from 3-20 down to win 23-20.

Patrick Mahomes reminds us all… again

It looked at the time to be the best quarterbacking performance of the weekend, but not to be undone, Patrick Mahomes reminded everyone what a superstar he is with a sensational performance in a packed Raymond James Stadium in the late kick off.

In doing so he gained a margin of revenge for the loss in Superbowl 55 as he tore the Bucs defence to pieces.

He started the game with touchdowns on his first three drives. On the night, he was just electric with a performance littered with jaw-dropping plays. Throughout Mahommes displayed his natural ingenuity with ball-in-hand on a level that most players could only dream of.

In my opinion, Mahommes showed a growing maturity and progression with his game management by leaning on all of his receiving core, which made the Chiefs attack unpredictable throughout. Tom Brady did well to keep the score a respectable 41-31.

It also finally put to bed for me that Kansas might struggle without the Cheetah, Tyreek Hill. If they can do this to the Bucs defence, then every other defensive coordinator on their schedule better sit up and take notice.

It’s only Week 4 and already I’m finding it hard to contain myself with the prospect of these three quarterbacks, Allen, Jackson and Mahommes, duking it out for supremacy in the AFC when knockout football returns in January.

The Tua Tagovailoa situation

The reigning AFC Champion Bengals get back to 500 with a 2-2 record after an impressive performance in front of a national audience.

Joe Burrow was born for nights like these and while the Cincinnati offence is still suffering growing pains, the offensive line gave a much improved effort from what we have seen from Week 1  through 3. They allowed only one sack all night. I don’t think I was ever concerned about the fate of the Bengals after the rocky 0-2 start.

Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa #1 of the Miami Dolphins. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images)

This Bengals team has imperfections but so did the 2021 Bengals. They aren’t going to win 13 or 14 games, but they are going to be in contention come the playoffs and Burrow tends to get better as the season goes on. His starting receiving core is still the deadliest in the league. They could do with getting more production out of Joe Mixon. After four games, Mixon is averaging a terrible 2.5 yards per attempt.

Also of note, Von Bell doubled his career interception total tonight and might just have got himself the game ball from Zac Taylor for his efforts. The Bengals now prepare themselves for a huge Sunday Night Football matchup with currently the biggest threats to their AFC North crown: The Baltimore Ravens. I cannot wait for this game!

This was a tough night for Miami. Losing a game to the reigning AFC champs on a short week, where they had to leave for Cincinnati earlier than expected due to a quicker than originally forecasted arrival of Hurricane Ian in Florida this week.

It ended their undefeated start to 2022 but this might be for the best, as the loss allows the Dolphins to keep themselves grounded and get back to the grind before their Week 5 tilt with AFC East rivals: New York Jets.

What will really hurt though, is the potential loss of starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and how it happened – a suspected double concussion in a five-day period – is a gut punch that will test the metal of rookie head-coach Mike McDaniel, who thus far has delivered beyond expectations in his first season in Miami.

For Tua, he really has taken a step forward this year and while he needs to be more accurate and cut out the interceptions on deep shots, he is playing with confidence and poise. It would be a heart-wrenching turn of events if, just as he is starting to understand how to be a productive NFL quarterback, it is ripped away by injury.

The Dolphins will have further questions to answer regarding their handling of the suspected Week 3 head injury that was reported as back injury by their medical team. Were they right to play Tua this week? I’m not qualified and am in no way connected to the team to answer that question, but I hope the people who are in this position can get the answers needed.

For now, let us wish Tua a speedy recovery and continued health.

*For more on two young gun QBs, drama at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and a round-up on the rest of Week 4, check out Smashmouting Football, and give them a follow on Twitter.