Tuesday, November 15, 2011

NFL Week 10: Tuesday Takeaways

We are now ten weeks into the NFL season and I'm getting carpel tunnel trying to keep up with all of the records that being broken (or on pace to be broken). Meanwhile, why didn't you bet the New England Patriots Sunday night? And LaDainian Tomlinson (pictured) did something in that game that deserves noting. It's all covered in The Source's Tuesday Takeaways.

1) I've written about this before, but watching Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald succeed without QB Kevin Kolb should be concerning for Arizona. On Sunday, Fitzgerald had a huge game, catching 7 passes for 146 yards and 2 TDs, all from back-up QB John Skelton. The Skelton to Fitzgerald connection has proven to be quite reliable, at least more than Kolb to Fitzgerald. In seven games with Skelton at QB (5 in 2010, 2 in 2011), Fitzgerald has 42 catches for 598 yards and 4 TDs. In the seven games with Kolb throwing to him, Fitzgerald has 34 catches for 603 and 2 TDs. The Cardinals paid a lofty price to land Kolb so benching him probably isn't in the plans. However, if the Cardinals keep losing with Kolb (1-6) and winning with Skelton (4-3), expect the pressure on Kolb to rise like the Arizona heat.

2) Another topic I write about often (as does everyone else) is Packers QB Aaron Rodgers' assault on the NFL record books. The Green Bay QB is the top passer in the NFL, and the the numbers aren't even close. Rodgers added another 4 TD passes on Monday night against the Minnesota Vikings, giving him 28 TDs on the season. Rodgers also is closing in on an NFL record for most consecutive games with at least two TD passes. Currently, Rodgers is on a nine game streak with at least two TD passes. The NFL record is 13 consecutive games held by Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. Add it to the list of records Rodgers will likely break this season.

3) Speaking of touchdown streaks, Saints QB Drew Brees continued his march towards an NFL record on Sunday. Brees' second quarter TD pass to Jimmy Graham against the Atlanta Falcons ran his streak to 37 consecutive games with a TD pass. Brees moved ahead of Brett Favre on that list, but he still trails Johnny Unitas, who threw a TD pass in 47 straight games.

4) Another streak worth noting is the Vikings inability to win a division game. Minnesota's 45-7 loss on Monday night to the Green Bay Packers was their ninth straight NFC North loss dating back to last year. The nine straight division losses is a franchise record for the Vikings, who have two more games to try and break the streak (@Detroit 12/8 and vs. Chicago 1/1). Sidenote: The Vikings are two seasons removed from going 5-1 against NFC North teams (finished 12-4 in 2009). 

5) When oddsmakers installed the New York Jets as one-point favorites on Sunday night against the New England Patriots, we all should have run to place our bets on the Pats. The Patriots, losers of two straight games (Steelers and Giants) heading into that Jets game, never lose three games in a row. From 2002-2011, the Patriots have played 147 games without enduring a three-game losing streak. That streak will continue after the Pats defeated the Jets 37-16. While that streak sounds impressive, it's still a (very, very) long way from breaking a record. From 1980-1999, the San Francisco 49ers went 287 games without a three-game losing streak.

6) Jets RB LaDainian Tomlinson's 60-yard performance on Sunday night against the New England Patriots didn't warrant a second-look, but he did accomplish an impressive feat in the process. Tomlinson moved ahead of Detroit Lions great Barry Sanders on the all-time yards from scrimmage list. Tomlinson now has 18, 206 yards from scrimmage in his career, which is 16 yards more than Sanders (18,190). Tomlinson now trails Jerry Rice (23,540), Emmitt Smith (21,579), Walter Payton (21,264) and Marshall Faulk (19,154).

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