The Washington Redskins have endured a brutal start to their season, losing in each of the first five weeks with no end in sight.
With every loss, the questions surrounding Jay Gruden’s job security continued to mount, as the head coach was clearly on the hot seat.
Now it has been announced that the Redskins have finally decided to make him the scapegoat for a disappointing season.
Gruden took over as the Redskins head coach back in 2014 and spent just over five seasons at the helm. He finishes his tenure with a 35-49-1 record, having made it to the postseason one time in 2015.
While the decision to fire Gruden did not surprise anyone, the method of dismissal was, as Redskins owner Dan Snyder waited until five o’clock this morning to break the news to the coach.
Gruden spoke pretty openly about his chance of being fired after the game yesterday, with his only comment being that “If the keys work, I will keep working”
Turns out his key card has been revoked, as Gruden will no longer be coaching the Redskins.
Now the Redskins will rely on their offensive line and assistant head coach, Bill Callahan, as their interim head coach.
Callahan will try to keep things afloat for the Redskins for the remainder of the season, as they look to hire a new head coach to rebuild the franchise for 2020 and beyond.
Green Bay Packers Kick Game-Winning Field Goal to Steal MNF Win From Lions
The Detroit Lions can’t seem to catch a break this season.
After starting the year 2-0-1, the Lions played a great game against the Kansas City Chiefs last week, but ultimately lost when Patrick Mahomes led his team to a touchdown in the last minute.
Then on Monday Night Football, Detroit nearly led the game wire-to-wire against their division rival, the Green Bay Packers, before Aaron Rodgers engineered a game-winning drive of his own.
The Lions scored the game’s first 13 points, before allowing the Packers back into the game to end the first half. With just over seven minutes remaining in the first half, Green Bay scored it’s first touchdown.
They then kicked a field goal before halftime, cutting the Lions lead to 13-10.
Detroit would extend their lead once again though, kicking three field goals compared to one by Green Bay, to carve out a 22-13 lead with just over 12 minutes left in the game.
Rodgers would score the first touchdown for either side in the second half, capping off a long drive with a great pass to Allen Lazard for a 35-yard touchdown.
Lazard is a great story, as he was signed by the Packers off the Jaguars practice squad last year. He was eventually placed on the Packers practice squad too, but earned a promotion to the active roster and had a big impact on Monday.
He led Green Bay with four catches and 65 yards, while picking up the first touchdown of his career.
The Packers ended up getting the ball back and would make the most of it, kicking a walk-off field goal to win.
While the Packers won this game with a comeback, what everyone is going to be talking about is the officiating that gave them that opportunity.
In both of Green Bay’s last two scoring drives, they were bailed out on failed third downs when a penalty flag was thrown to extend those drives.
Each of the penalties was called on Lions stud edge rusher Trey Flowers, as the referees called illegal hands to the face on No. 90.
You can see that Flowers never touched the face of either lineman on those plays as they were blatant missed calls by the refs.
What makes those calls worse is that the Packers linemen who were protecting Rodgers were actually the one’s using putting their hands in the face of the Lions pass rush.
If those flags aren’t thrown, the Packers would have to convert fourth downs to keep those drives alive, instead of being handed first downs.
After the game, the media met up with Flowers to ask him about those calls. Flowers was very careful not to say anything about the officiating that would get him fined by the NFL, but his face really says it all.
On the other hand, the Packers gladly accepted those officiating gaffes, as it helped them advance to 5-1 on the season.
The Packers will face a well-rested Raiders on a short week, as Oakland is coming off a bye.
Meanwhile the Lions will play another division rival, returning home to face the Minnesota Vikings.
San Francisco 49ers Remain Undefeated After Beating the Rams on the Road
It may be time to take the San Francisco 49ers seriously as the favorite to make it to the Super Bowl out of the NFC.
San Francisco is the only undefeated team left in their conference, with the New England Patriots being the only other team in the NFL without a loss this season.
Sunday they played against the defending NFC champs, the Los Angeles Rams, and beat them in convincing fashion.
The Rams put together a touchdown on their opening drive, marching down the field with ease.
After the plays were no longer scripted though, L.A. could not do anything against the stout defense of the Niners. San Francisco held Jared Goff to just 78 yards passing and the Rams offense to a total of just 157 yards.
When it came to San Francisco’s offense, they really did not do anything that impressive. But when you have a championship-caliber defense, sometimes all you have to do is not get in the way.
Jimmy Garoppolo may not be winning an MVP this year, but if he keeps managing the game for the 49ers and gets them victories, it really doesn’t matter.
San Francisco should have no problem remaining undefeated next week, when they travel to Washington to play the lowly Redskins.
Jets Collect First Win of the Season in Sam Darnold’s Return to the Lineup
The New York Jets came into this season with high expectations after making big splashes in free agency that included revamping their defense and adding a dynamic playmaker in running back Le’Veon Bell.
They had aspirations of competing with the New England Patriots in the division, behind the play of second-year quarterback Sam Darnold. But after a narrow one-point lose in Week 1, the Jets season was derailed.
That is because Darnold was ruled out of the linuep indefinitely with mono. In the three weeks without Darnold, the Jets lost every game and looked to be heading towards another miserable season.
This week, Darnold finally returned to the lineup though and he has sparked some hope in the Jets otherwise futile 2019-20 season.
Darnold led the Jets to an early lead, scoring a touchdown on their second drive.
Then with just over three minutes left in the half, Darnold hit the type of big play that Jets had been sorely missing in his absence, connecting with Robby Anderson on a 92-yard touchdown strike.
The Jets ended up taking a 21-6 lead into the second half, as they absolutely stunned the Dallas Cowboys, who were clearly expecting an easy win.
Dallas did outscore the Jets 16-3 in the second half, but the damage had already been done and New York escaped with their first victory of the season.
You truly can’t underestimate the value of the quarterback position in the NFL, as it can completely change the fortunes of your team.
Darnold’s teammates were glowing about him after the game, as the return of the young quarterback seems to have lit a fire under the Jets.
The question is going to be if this is too little, too late, with the Jets already losing four games to start their season.
New York will get a great test next week when they play the New England Patriots. If they come away with a win in that game, we will have to start to take the Jets seriously.
On the other hand, this is another embarrassing loss for the Dallas Cowboys, who have now lost three straight games after opening the season 3-0.
The Cowboys will return home next week for a Sunday Night Football matchup against their chief division rival, the Philadelphia Eagles.
A loss in that game could spell disaster for Jason Garrett and the Cowboys.
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