At the start of the season, NFL analysts raved about the Cowboys’ offense. Meanwhile, their fans were bullish about their chances of making it all the way to the Super Bowl. Roll on a few of the wildest weeks in the history of the league, and they’re looking at a very different picture. Barely able to win a game, injuries have decimated their offense.
Star left tackle Tyron Smith will miss the rest of the year. It’s a major blow to their hopes of making an impact this year because he’s one of their truly elite players and is sitting on a $97 million contract. Then Dak Prescott suffered a gruesome ankle injury in a win over the Giants. Meanwhile, a whole host of other players from their roster are out with injuries. It’s been a dreadful start after such optimism.
Postponed games have become an endless threat to NFL games. Competition protocols have resulted in thousands of tests taking place every week. Thankfully most of these are negative but the few that test positive create chaos. The Patriots vs. Broncos game in Weel Five was postponed until a later date due to multiple positive test results.
First, Cam Newton tested positive – more on him later. Then Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore suffered the same fate. All in all, a total of four players failed the tests. This resulted in both the Patriots and Broncos receiving a Week Five bye in order to keep everybody safe. However, this is the new normal and could happen with any game.
It’s been a crazy 2020 for Newton. First, he emerged from purgatory to replace Tom Brady in New England. It made a lot of sense for Bill Belichick because he was a free agent and still has an excellent pedigree. But it was also a case of the last-chance saloon for the former Panthers’ star. His fall from grace since his NFL MVP in 2015 was stark.
But it’s been good so far. He has settled in well with the Patriots and added a new dimension to their offense. While the team as an entity is definitely weaker than the great Pats’ sides of the past decade, his contribution is valuable. We saw this even clearer when he was absent because of a positive test. The Kansas City Chiefs were too good for the Patriots without him. It looks like a decent match.
Let’s forget about outside distractions for a moment and focus on pure football. Texas has provided two meltdowns this season but Houston’s is definitely the worst. After bizarrely allowing Bill O’Brien to go full Emperor Palpatine and take control of the franchise as GM and head coach, it all ended in tears. However, tears of despair turned to relief after they finally fired him.
It’s been one of the wildest runs in recent NFL history. After losing their first four games of the season they finally got a Week Five win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. That was a damning indictment of O’Brien because he wasn’t there anymore. From wacky trades to shocking in-game tactical decisions, it’s been a wild ride for long-suffering Texans’ fans.
First of all, nobody likes wearing a mask. They’re uncomfortable and make your face hot. But you grin and bear it because it’s the right thing to do. If you don’t, it’s irresponsible. Now let’s multiply the implications of that by a thousand and apply it to an NFL franchise defying league protocols. That’s right, we’re talking about the Tenessee Titans and the wildest shutdown so far as they brazenly ignored the rules.
Titans’ players and staff didn’t wear masks around their training facilities as required. Furthermore, they organized public training sessions instead of going home when there were infections at their training center. There is already talk of taking away draft picks as punishment or even suspending head coach Mike Vrabel and GM Jon Robinson. It’s been an embarrassing episode for the Titans in an uncertain time.
This was a real threat to NFL teams and their hopes of making the 2020 postseason. In particular, the Titans will worry about this after their alleged antics as stated above. The NFL seriously considered the introduction of forced forfeits if teams violate their safety protocols. Not in their wildest imaginations could they have thought they were going to get away with this drivel. There has never been a forfeit in the modern era of the league.
You have to go back to 1921 when the Rochester Jeffersons and Washington Senators resulted in a forfeit. However, with a tight schedule and more games at risk of postponement, forced forfeits, or at least the threat of them will definitely be a stick used by the NFL. If one does happen, it will be one of the wildest incidents in NFL history.
We’ve already discussed Josh Allen’s emergence as a genuine star quarterback. But the good news for the Bills Mafia goes beyond that because their franchise returned to the playoffs. They made it as far as the AFC Championship game for the first time since 1994. Of course, this meant that there were many videos on the Internet of their fans attempting the wildest celebrations in the NFL.
There are multiple reasons why Buffalo has regenerated. First of all, Sean McDermott deserves all of the respect in the world for his job in New York State. Meanwhile, the Bills also benefited from sitting stable in a weak division. The Patriots and Dolphins are still transitioning while the Jets were dire. This was a massive opportunity for the Bills to become the dominant force in the East.
It looked like the Chiefs were an unstoppable force on a run to back-to-back Super Bowls. After putting a beating on the Bills, all they had to was overcome Tampa. They had already defeated the Bucs in the regular season. But injuries to key players left them decimated. At one point there were even question marks about Patrick Mahomes after he suffered a concussion.
Then, a horrible story emerged involving Britt Reid, son of Chiefs’ head coach Andy, and a Kansas City coach in his own right. Police arrested him on a DUI charge after he left a young girl in a coma following a collision. Furthermore, the Chiefs made the strange decision not to travel to Tampa early and instead trained at home all week. It was one of the wildest and most chaotic weeks ever.
Tampa’s Super Bowl victory was one of the wildest in recent history for many years. First of all, the Kansas City Chiefs were supposed to be an invincible force. But they looked ordinary against the Buccaneers as Patrick Mahomes proved that he is human. The most surprising thing about this game was not that the Bucs won, but that they cruised to victory in such a nonchalant fashion.
Meanwhile, all of the statistics add up to make this even crazier. Bruce Arians became the oldest head coach ever to win a Super Bowl. Furthermore, Tampa became the first team to win a Super Bowl in their home stadium. Then there are all of Brady’s individual accolades. This was an exceptional and unlikely victory but one that every neutral fan wanted to see.
The spotlight was on Brady all season after his move from New England. Many expected him to fail because of his age and the challenges of learning a new system. But instead, he won an unprecedented seventh Super Bowl ring. To put this into perspective, he has more rings than any single NFL franchise in their history. That is quite simply stunning and there will never be anybody like him again.
Brady even won MVP honors for his performance in the game. His efficient display was in stark contrast to Patrick Mahomes who had easily the worst game of his career. After a tough start to life in Tampa, Brady made it all the way to the winners’ podium and proved that he doesn’t need Bill Belichick to win. It’s one of the wildest stories in the history of professional football.
The wildest thing about this season is that we actually have a season. Of course, the NFL was always going to go ahead, because money talks. If it meant creating a bubble in the Saudi Arabian desert or moving the league to the moon you have to feel like they’d do it. A suspended season would be devastating. Even now it looks like they will lose up to $4 billion in revenue. Imagine how bad it would be if it didn’t go ahead?
Now the biggest question is whether or not they will be able to complete the season. We’ve already seen postponed games but that can’t be infinite. There may come a moment where the NFL has no choice but to adopt a truncated format when it comes to the playoffs. These are unprecedented times and this is one of the wildest seasons in memory.