NFL Week 4 Recap: The COVID Outbreak Begins

Story posted October 6, 2020 in Sports, CommRadio by Jakob Schnur

Week 4 of the NFL season turned out to be one of the most interesting yet. There were a ton of close finishes, multiple games postponed and a head coach already fired. Without further ado, let’s recap this wild week of NFL action.

The biggest news of the week is definitely the COVID-19 outbreak that has begun to hit the league. Both the Tennessee Titans and New England Patriots had their games postponed due to members of each organization contracting the virus, most notably, Patriots quarterback Cam Newton.

In other news, after an 0-4 start to the season, the Houston Texans have decided to fire head coach/general manager Bill O’Brien.

To start off the week, the winless Denver Broncos played the winless New York Jets on Thursday Night Football. Despite Broncos quarterback Brett Rypien throwing three interceptions, including one that was returned for a touchdown, Denver was able to get its first victory with a score of 37-28 on the back of Melvin Gordon’s 107 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

In what was probably his best game as a Tampa Bay Buccaneer so far, Tom Brady completed 65% of his passes for 369 yards and five touchdowns in a 38-31 victory over the Chargers. However, the biggest story of the game was the impressive performance of rookie quarterback Justin Herbert. He went toe-to-toe with the greatest quarterback of all time and competed until the end, throwing three touchdowns and two deep passes that are among the best throws we’ve seen so far this season.

Speaking of rookie quarterbacks, first overall pick Joe Burrow collected his first win as a Cincinnati Bengal against Gardner Minshew and the Jacksonville Jaguars. For the third straight week, Burrow threw for over 300 passing yards, but the real difference-maker in this matchup was Joe Mixon. Mixon rushed for 151 yards and two touchdowns while also picking up a receiving touchdown in Cincinnati’s 33-24 victory.

In a high-scoring affair, the Cleveland Browns pulled off an upset against the Dallas Cowboys, defeating them by a score of 49-38. The Dallas defense had no answer for Odell Beckham Jr., as he had his best game yet in a Cleveland Browns uniform, scoring three total touchdowns, including a 50-yard touchdown run that sealed the game late in the fourth quarter. 

Another week meant another Seahawks win, as Seattle pushed its record to 4-0 in a victory over the Miami Dolphins 31-23. While this was probably Russell Wilson’s worst game of the season, it wasn’t a poor performance by any means, as he threw for 360 yards and two touchdowns, continuing to prove why he should be this year’s MVP.

The primetime matchup on Sunday night featured two teams riddled with injuries in the Philadelphia Eagles and the San Francisco 49ers. Even with Deebo Samuel and George Kittle returning to the 49ers’ lineup, the Eagles defense took over this game, forcing three turnovers and scoring on an interception by linebacker Alex Singleton. Philadelphia got its first win in a 25-20 victory.

In the first of Monday night’s two games, Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Cam Newton-less New England Patriots 26-10. Mahomes threw two touchdown passes in the victory, including one to Tyreek Hill, marking his fourth straight game with a receiving touchdown.

In the final game of the week, the Green Bay Packers won their fourth of the year, beating the Falcons 30-16. Even without his top targets in Davante Adams and Allen Lazard, Aaron Rodgers gave a phenomenal four-touchdown performance, three of which were to tight end Robert Tonyan.

Week 5 is set up to be a great one, as only six teams remain unbeaten, and we await more news on the recent COVID-19 cases.

 

Jakob Schnur is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email jks6463@psu.edu.