Week 8 of the the NFL season is in the books! Here’s a rundown of how all the Arizona Wildcats in the league performed. (Note: This list does not include Reggie Gilbert and Jace Whittaker who are members of the Arizona Cardinals’ practice squad.)
Rob Gronkowski, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Gronk reeled in a touchdown pass for the third straight week as the Bucs beat the Giants 25-23 on Monday night for their third straight win. (See the pattern there?)
The three-yard, third-quarter grab was the 93rd time Gronk and Tom Brady have connected in the end zone:
Gronk had three other catches, finishing the night with four grabs for 41 yards. It’s the fourth straight week he’s had 40 or more receiving yards. It will be interesting to see if his production changes when the controversial Antonio Brown joins the receiving corps.
Nick Foles, Chicago Bears
Foles helped the Bears force overtime after they were trailing 23-13 early in the fourth.
He threw a touchdown to Darnell Mooney in the flat to cut the lead to 23-20 with 3:32 left. The Bears then got a stop and Foles led the them into field goal range in the final seconds and Cairo Santos drilled a 51-yarder.
However, the Saints prevailed in overtime, 26-23.
For the game, Foles went 28 for 41 for 272 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Chicago has lost two straight after starting 5-1 and our friends over at Windy City Gridiron are questioning Foles’ place as the starter:
I’m not sure there was one objective Bears fan who looked at the Foles acquisition and thought he was the long-term answer. I also don’t think there were many fans who believed he was actually a legitimately good NFL quarterback. Even so, we were told that he knew that offense and that his familiarity within it and the coaches was why they chose to give up a fourth round pick and guarantee him over $20 million over signing another cheaper free agent option.
So far, I’ve seen a veteran quarterback’s confidence within the offense and his personnel shrinking by the snap. Over the past two games Foles is getting hit more behind a makeshift offensive line. In turn, he’s not setting his feet and panicking more in the pocket, leading to more sacks. Because of this, his accuracy is becoming an issue, as is his decision making.
Heading into 2020, I was very adamant that Mitchell Trubisky was not the answer and shouldn’t be starting. While I still feel this way, it’s becoming harder for the team to justify playing a veteran that is quickly looking more and more like Trubisky on a weekly basis without the athleticism.
Nick Folk, New England Patriots
It’s not Folk’s fault, though. He made field goals from 33 and 43 yards and has not missed a kick of any kind since Week 2.
J.J. Taylor, New England Patriots
Taylor was active for the first time Week 3, but still did not see any snaps. That was a bit of a head-scratcher to Alex Barth of 985TheSportsHub.com:
“He was a healthy scratch the last two weeks, and hasn’t seen the field since Damien Harris returned,” Barth wrote. “The Patriots customarily take things slow with rookie running backs, so it’s not completely out of character, but usually every player is on the gameday roster with purpose, even in a special teams role.”
The Patriots are 0-4 since reducing Taylor’s role.
Will Parks, Philadelphia Eagles
Parks has his best game of the season, tallying five tackles including two for a loss. He took over at safety when Jalen Mills went down with an injury.
Ironically, it could be Parks’ last game in an Eagles uniform:
Philly’s own Will Parks was the last player left on field pregame. He went to the Eagles logo midfield and touched it. It’s been rumored he could be had in a trade before deadline Tuesday pic.twitter.com/sdysBgAgUj— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) November 2, 2020
Dane Cruikshank, Tennessee Titans
Despite coming away with an interception last Sunday, Cruikshank was inactive for Tennessee this Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Titans, who started the season 5-2, lost to Joe Burrow and the Bengals 31-20 for their second straight loss.
Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles, San Francisco 49ers
The Niners have a ridiculously long injury list, and DFF was added to it Sunday when he suffered a hamstring injury covering the opening kickoff. It’s a shame he went down because he was set to start at linebacker in place of the injured Kwon Alexander.
It remains to be seen how severe DFF’s injury is, but he did not participate in Monday’s practice leading up to the Niners’ Thursday Night showdown with the Packers.
Seriously, though, look at San Francisco’s injury list: