The game between the Redskins and Dolphins wasn't supposed to be a thriller, but somehow, that's exactly what it turned into on Sunday, and for the first time in NFL history both teams might have actually come out as winners.
In a game that was billed as the Tank Bowl or the Toilet Bowl -- depending on who you asked -- the Redskins escaped Miami with a 17-16 win. Of course, this was the one game where winning wasn't necessarily a good thing. Thanks to the loss, the Dolphins are now one step closer toward earning the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 draft. Only the Redskins could disappoint their fan base by winning.
Seriously, Redskins fans wanted their team to lose this game.
The fact of the matter is that the Redskins did win, and they did it by doing exactly what Bill Callahan said they were going to do. After Callahan was promoted to interim coach on Monday, he promised to run the ball against the Dolphins and his strategy couldn't have worked out any better.
Week 6 is almost in the books and there's a lot to go over. Fortunately Will Brinson, John Breech, and Sean Wagner-McGough are here to break everything down on the latest episode of the Pick Six Podcast. Listen to the full show below and be sure to subscribe right here for daily NFL goodness.
The Redskins offense revolved around Adrian Peterson on Sunday and Peterson ended up making Callahan look like a genius with 23 carries for 118 yards. To put Peterson's performance in perspective, he had more rushing yards against the Dolphins than he had in all his other games this season combined (108).
With Peterson running the ball so well, that opened the door for the Redskins' passing offense. and Case Keenum took advantage of that with two touchdowns to Terry McLaurin, including the 33-yarder that you can see below.
The rookie receiver caught four passes for 100 yards, which helped the Redskins shoot out to a 17-3 lead. Keenum threw for 166 yards and the two scores to McLaurin.
In most cases when you get a 14-point lead against the Dolphins, you can go ahead and chalk up the win, but these Dolphins actually fought back with a huge fourth quarter. In a twist, the comeback only happened because coach Brian Flores decided to bench Josh Rosen -- which was somewhat of a surprise, because he had just said earlier this week that Rosen would be the quarterback for the rest of the season.
The good news for Flores is that the decision to bench Rosen and play Ryan Fitzpatrick paid off. Fitzmagic was on full display in the fourth quarter as Fitzpatrick led the Dolphins to two touchdowns, including an 11-yard score to DeVante Parker with just six seconds left that cut the lead to 17-16.
The most improbable part of Miami's comeback is that Fitzpatrick's two touchdown passes were the first points the Dolphins scored in the second half all season.
After Parker's score, the Dolphins went for the win on a two-point conversion, but this is the Dolphins we're talking about, so you probably already know what happened. The conversion failed and the Dolphins lost, but they kind of won because the top pick in the NFL Draft is still firmly in their sights.
For the Redskins, although they hurt their chances of earning the No. 1 overall pick, they're still not dead yet in the NFC East. Washington plays in the wackiest division in football, and if you need proof, just consider this: With the Cowboys' loss to the Jets on Sunday, the Redskins sit just two games out of first place. Although they are a long shot to win the division, crazier things have happened in NFL, so maybe Redskins fans should start rooting for wins again.
Carolina 37-26 over Tampa Bay (in London)
|The Panthers defense definitely didn't suffer from any jet lag on their trip to London. In a game where Carolina only totaled 268 yards of offense, the Panthers defense did all the grunt work in this win. Not only did they sack Jameis Winston a total of seven times in England, but they also forced seven turnovers. Former Bucs defensive lineman Gerald McCoy finally got some revenge on his old team with 2.5 sacks in a game where the Panthers pressured Winston into throwing five interceptions. James Bradberry picked off Winston two times, including an interception with under a minute left that sealed the win. Offensively, Christian McCaffrey didn't put up huge numbers (31 rush yards, 26 receiving yards), but he continued to do some serious damage with two touchdowns. The Panthers also got a two-touchdown performance from Curtis Samuel, who did his best McCaffrey impression with a rushing TD and a receiving TD. |
|Jameis Winston threw an interception on his first pass of the game in London, and things only went downhill after that for the Buccaneers quarterback. Winston almost single-handedly lost this game for the Bucs with a career-high five interceptions. Winston also lost a fumble in a game where the Bucs turned the ball over a total of seven times. Winston's first two picks led to 10 points for the Panthers and his fumble came on a drive in the first half where Tampa had driven to Carolina's 12-yard line. With the Buccaneers trying to figure out whether or not Winston is their quarterback of the future, this game was a strong argument for why they should just go ahead let him walk after the 2019 season.|
Seattle 32-28 over Cleveland
|Russell Wilson might not be putting up Patrick Mahomes-type passing numbers, but he is quietly having one of the best seasons of any quarterback in NFL history through six weeks. Wilson has been nearly perfect this season, and that perfection continued for Cleveland. In a game where the Seahawks trailed 20-6, Wilson willed his team to victory with 295 passing yards and two touchdowns. He also added another 31 yards and a touchdown on the ground. The biggest surprise in this game for the Seahawks is that Wilson didn't have to do everything by himself. The quarterback got plenty of help from a ground game that rushed for 170 yards and a defense that forced four turnovers. |
|Freddie Kitchens' popularity level in Cleveland might fall below Hue Jackson's after this loss. In a game that the Browns led 20-6 at one point, Kitchens basically coached Cleveland out of any chance to win this game with multiple bad decisions, especially in the second half. Not only did the Browns coach throw a questionable challenge flag in the fourth quarter, but goal line play-calling left a lot to be desired. Of course, Kitchens wasn't helped by the fact that the Browns turned the ball over four times, which included three interceptions by Baker Mayfield. Mayfield's 11 interceptions through six games are now the most by any Browns quarterback since 1984.|
Washington 17-16 over Miami
|Although Terry McLaurin and Adrian Peterson stole the show for Washington on Sunday, the Redskins also had an impressive performance on defense against the Dolphins. Jonathan Allen tallied two sacks while leading a Redskins pass rush that totaled five sacks in the game. The defense also came up with multiple big plays: Not only did they pick off two passes, but they stopped Kalen Ballage cold at the 1-yard line on a two-point conversion that would have won the game for the Dolphins with just six seconds left. |
|Going into Week 6 the Dolphins had yet to hold an opponent under 30 points or hold an opposing offense to under 390 yards, but they did both of those against Washington. Although that had a lot to do with the fact that the Redskins offense just isn't that good, you do have to give the Dolphins defense some credit for playing their best game of the season. This game marked the first time since Week 13 of last season that Miami held an opponent under 20 points. Offensively, the Dolphins were shut down for three quarters before Brian Flores decided to bench Josh Rosen. At that point, Ryan Fitzpatrick came in and threw for 132 yards while leading almost engineering a Dolphins comeback. |
Baltimore 23-17 over Cincinnati
|The Bengals couldn't run the ball in Baltimore and they couldn't stop the run, but they managed to keep this game close thanks to the fact that they were able to come up with key plays in all three phases of the game. The biggest play for Cincinnati came on the opening kickoff when Brandon Wilson took the ball and returned it 92 yards for a touchdown. Offensively, the Bengals got off to a slow start with just six yards in the first quarter, before picking up the pace over the final three quarters. Auden Tate almost single-handedly kept the Bengals in the game with five catches for 91 yards. As for the Bengals defense, they surrendered 269 yards, which was the most Cincinnati has surrendered in a game since 2001. |
|The Ravens got to go up against the NFL's second-worst rushing defense on Sunday and they definitely took advantage of that. Lamar Jackson literally ran circles around the Bengals defense in a game where he rushed for 152 yards, which fell just 21 yards short of tying Michael Vick's regular season record for a quarterback. Thanks in large part to Jackson, the Ravens rushing attack totals 269 yards on the ground, which was the team's second-highest total since 2012. Jackson also threw for 236 yards in the win, making him the only player in NFL history to pass for 200 or more yards and rush for 150 or more yards in the same game. |
Minnesota 38-20 over Philadelphia
|The Eagles defense put forth an embarrassing effort in this one, allowing Cousins and Diggs to to have their way against Rasul Douglas in the second quarter. A questionable head coaching day from Doug Pederson made matters worse as he tried a fake field goal attempt down 24-10, costing the Eagles three points before half. Pederson also ran a screen to Alshon Jeffery on third-and-3 at the Vikings' 21 with the Eagles trailing 24-17 midway through the third quarter, a play he previously ran twice earlier in the game for minimal yardage. Carson Wentz played well, but dropped passes plagued him and forced the Eagles quarterback to do too much at the end. Just a poor performance overall from the Eagles, especially on defense. |
|Don't think you can ask any more of the Vikings offense in this one. Minnesota gashed Philadelphia's defense all afternoon as the Vikings finished with 447 yards and averaged 6.9 yards per play. Cousins was exceptional, finishing 22 of 29 for 333 yards with four touchdowns and an interception for a 138.4 rating, his first four-touchdown game since Week 2 of the 2018 season. Cousins had the deep ball going to Stefon Diggs, who had touchdown catches for 62 and 51 yards as he finished with seven catches for 167 yards for three scores. Cousins and Diggs torched the Eagles defense throughout the day as the Vikings raced out to a 21-point first half lead, one they wouldn't relinquish. |
Eagles-Vikings grades by Jeff Kerr (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)
Houston 31-24 over Kansas City
|Houston was able to weather the initial wave of the Chiefs offense and was able to stay competitive early on. The Texans running game led by Carlos Hyde and Duke Johnson were a foundational piece in the win, while Deshaun Watson proved once again that he is a superstar in this league. Will Fuller missing multiple touchdown catches and kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn missing an extra point and a field goal is what bring the overall team grade down. |
|Kansas City came out extremely strong on their opening drive, but did seem to fall apart as the game went on. Patrick Mahomes and company were forced to punt on back-to-back drives in the fourth quarter and gave no life to a potential comeback. Penalties also killed any momentum on either side of the ball and were flagged a total of 11 times. Defensively, they had no answer for a Houston rushing attack that totaled 192 yards and three touchdowns. |
Texans-Chiefs grades by Tyler Sullivan (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)
New Orleans 13-6 over Jacksonville
|The Saints' offense really struggled early on against the Jaguars, but they were able to adjust in the second half. After making just two catches in the first two quarters, Michael Thomas made six grabs in the second half, and finished with 89 yards. It was a far cry from his 182-yard outing last week, but it was enough to get the job done. The defense played well throughout the entire matchup. Jacksonville recorded only 226 yards of total offense and was shut out in the first and fourth quarters.|
|Gardner Minshew fell flat after his 374-yard, two-touchdown outing against the Carolina Panthers last week. He passed for just 163 yards and an interception against the Saints on Sunday, and failed to get the offense into a rhythm. The Jaguars spent most of the afternoon punting and only registered two drives that lasted at least 10 plays. The defense was impressive, however, and stepped up in big moments. Usually holding your opponent to 13 points means a victory is coming your way, but the offense failed to uphold their end of the bargain.|
Saints-Jaguars grades by Jordan Dajani (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)
San Francisco 20-7 over L.A. Rams
|The 49ers didn't just win this game, they absolutely embarrassed the Rams from start to finish. The most impressive part of this win for San Francisco is that the defense continuously made big plays throughout the game against a Rams offense that used to seem unstoppable. Not only did the 49ers rack up four sacks -- including 1.5 by Dee Ford -- but they also came up with four huge fourth-down stops. The biggest of those stops came on a goal line stand in the second quarter when the 49ers stuffed Rams running back Malcolm Brown on two straight runs from the 1-yard line. The 49ers offense is still a work in progress, but they'll have plenty of time to fix things as long as the defense keeps playing as well as it did on Sunday.|
|If you want to see what disastrous looks like, all you need to do is rewatch every offensive play that the Rams ran in this game. The Rams offense looked absolutely lost on Sunday, and a big part of that is because Jared Goff couldn't handle the 49ers pressure. Goff threw for a career-low 78 yards, which is especially bad when you consider that he never had a total that low during his time with Jeff Fisher. Overall, the Rams offense only mustered 165 yards against the 49ers, which was the lowest total the team has had since hiring Sean McVay in 2017. The Rams also went an ugly 0 for 13 on third and fourth down conversions.The Rams could blame their offensive struggles on the fact that Todd Gurley didn't play, but Gurley hasn't been effective enough this year for them to use that excuse. The only reason this game didn't turn into a total blowout is because the Rams defense forced two turnovers while keeping the 49ers offense relatively in check. |
Denver 16-0 over Tennessee
|It took six weeks, but the Titans offense has finally hit rock bottom. Although the Titans have struggled on offense in multiple games this year, they've never looked worse than they did in Denver. They couldn't run the ball, they couldn't pass the ball and they couldn't protect their quarterback. The Titans offensive line surrendered a total of seven sacks in the game, which was especially bad, considering the Broncos had only totaled five sacks on the entire season heading into Week 6. The Titans did make a bold move in this game when they benched Marcus Mariota (7 of 18, 63 yards, 2 INT), and although Ryan Tannehill wasn't much better (13 of 16, 144 yards, 1 INT), he did play just well enough that that team should probably think about giving him a start in the team's next game. The Titans only totaled 39 yards on the ground, marking the first time since 2015 that they didn't rush for at least 40 yards in a game.|
|After sleepwalking through the first few weeks of the season, it appears that someone has finally woken up the sleeping giant that is the Broncos defense. One week after shutting down the Chargers, the Broncos arguably topped themselves by pitching their first shutout in nearly two years. Not only did the Broncos defense rack up seven sacks in this game -- with two each by Derek Wolfe and Demarcus Walker -- but it also forced three turnovers in the win. One of those interceptions was a third quarter pick by Justin Simmons that set up Denver's only touchdown of the game. The turnovers and sacks are a big deal for the Broncos, considering they didn't force a single turnover or tally a single sack during the first three weeks of the season. Although Denver's offense didn't do much against the Titans, the Broncos did get several big plays from the unit, including a 41-yard catch by Courtland Sutton and a 30-yard run by Philip Lindsay that set up a 48-yard field goal by Brandon McManus in the fourth quarter. Lindsay would end up rushing for 70 yards and scoring Denver's only touchdown.|
Arizona 34-33 over Atlanta
|With Dan Quinn on the hot seat, this is the type of loss that could eventually lead to his firing in Atlanta. This loss was especially ugly because Quinn calls the plays for the Falcons defense, and his unit got burned for 300 yards in the first half. The Falcons had no answers for Kyler Murray, who threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns. Despite the defensive mess, Matt Ryan almost led the Falcons back from a 27-10 deficit, but Atlanta fell short after the almost always reliable Matt Bryant missed an extra point that would have tied the game at 34.|
|The Kyler Murray Show is suddenly turning into must-see TV on Sundays. For the second week in a row, the rookie showed why the Cardinals made him the No. 1 overall pick. Not only did Murray throw for 340 yards, but he also threw three touchdown passes while completing a season-high 73 percent of his passes. Murray also rushed for 32 yards, including a game-clinching five-yard run on a third-and-5 late in the fourth quarter, which means he personally accounted for 372 of Arizona's 442 yards. A big reason Murray was so successful against the Falcons is because he put the ball in the hands of his play-makers. Murray's two favorite targets in the game were Larry Fitzgerald and David Johnson, who both caught six passes. Johnson totaled 68 yards and a touchdown while Fitzgerald finished with 69 yards. Kliff Kingsbury's offense continues to look better and better every week. |
N.Y. Jets 24-22 over Dallas
|This time, there will be no extra credit given for nearly mounting a come-from-behind win. It's the third consecutive week the Cowboys offense has struggled to put up points in the first half and dug themselves a hole they couldn't climb out of, aided by their defense failing to consistently pressure the opposing quarterback and their secondary giving up chunk plays. The only difference is this time it wasn't Aaron Rodgers, it was Sam Darnold -- a second-year QB who missed the last three games with mononucleosis. Darnold didn't look rusty at all against the Cowboys defense, but instead it was Dak Prescott and Co. -- who admittedly were without four offensive starters -- that looked out of sorts for most of the game. Even with injuries, it was the winless Jets, and a game the Cowboys should've won, even if only by a field goal. Maybe if receivers didn't drop the ball at every turn, the Cowboys might've had a chance.|
|Credit the Jets defense for taking advantage of the absence of Tyron Smith and La'el Collins, making it feel inconsequential that C.J. Mosley was absent. They were also again without tight end Chris Herndon, but they figured out how to get the job done and Jamison Crowder was a big part of it. Darnold was masterful in his return -- sans one interception -- and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams made sure Prescott remained uncomfortable down to the waning seconds when they blitzed him to force an incompletion on a two-point attempt that would've sent the game into overtime. Even as the Cowboys found a way to claw back into the game late, the Jets held. Sure, they got messy with several flags on the last Cowboys drive of the game but when it mattered, they clamped down and sent the Cowboys packing with a third straight loss.|
Cowboys-Jets grades by Patrik Walker (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)
Pittsburgh 24-17 over L.A. Chargers
|Any time you go on the road and pick up an upset win with your third-string quarterback, you get an 'A' here, and that's exactly what the Steelers did on Sunday night. Although Devlin Hodges didn't do anything spectacular against the Chargers, he played the role of game manager to near perfection, which is all Pittsburgh needed from him in this game. Hodges completed 15 of 20 passes for 132 yards and a touchdown, with seven of those completions and 78 yards going to James Conner. Of course, the real reason the Steelers dominated their game is because their defense turned into the Steel Curtain. Not only did the Steelers forced three turnovers, but they also held the Chargers to just 32 yards on the ground, marking the first time since October 2017 that they've held a team under 35 yards rushing. Devin Bush came up especially big for the Steelers with a fumble return for a touchdown and a team-leading seven tackles. Hodges now has more West Coast wins than Ben Roethlisberger. |
|Maybe the Chargers should ask Melvin Gordon to start holding out again, because ever since his return, the team's offense has fallen apart. After rushing for just 31 yards last week, Gordon was even worse on Sunday with 18 yards on eight carries. Of course, Austin Ekeler didn't have much more success, rushing five times for 14 yards. The bottom line is that the everything about the Chargers offense was a disaster on Sunday -- especially their offensive line -- and it was why they lost this game. Not only were the Chargers held scoreless for three quarters, but they also gave up a touchdown when Philip Rivers threw a backwards lateral that the Steelers returned for a score. It was an ugly performance by a team that seems to be going nowhere fast. |
Green Bay 23-22 over Detroit
|When the Lions look back at this game, they're going to be upset about two things: The officiating and their ability to convert in the red zone. Although the Lions offense was able to move the ball for most of the game, it seemed to fall apart every time it got closer to the Packers' end zone. The Lions got inside of Green Bay's 10-yard line a total of three times on Monday, but were only able to score one touchdown. The Lions offense also completely disappeared in the second half as Matthew Stafford threw for just 46 yards after throwing for 219 in the first half. The Lions defense gave up 447 yards, but it's hard to blame them for anything, considering Trey Flowers got called for two crucial hands to the face penalties that should've never been called. |
|It took six weeks, but Matt Lafleur's offense finally seems to running on all cylinders in Green Bay. Although the Packers got off to a slow start with a three-and-out on their first possession, they were basically able to move the ball at will after that. The team totaled 170 yards rushing with 104 of that coming from Jamaal Williams, who averaged a ridiculous 7.4 yards per rush. As for Aaron Rodgers, although he didn't put up big numbers (283 yards), he came through with multiple clutch throws when the Packers need them most, including a 35-yard TD pass to Allen Lazard in the fourth quarter. Mason Crosby also had a big game with three field goals, including a game winner from 23 yards out as time expired. The Packers biggest issue in this game was turnovers. Darrius Shepherd lost a fumble on a punt and then had an interception bounce off his helmet. |