NFL recap: Analyzing the Unlikely Heroes of Week 3

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By: Michael Porter

With the NFL season in full swing, all 32 teams have their eyes set on one goal: a Super Bowl championship. Entering Week 4 of the still relatively young season, there is still plenty of time for teams to either rise or fall in the standings. Some of the more notable names in the league have gone down with early season injuries that have a massive effect on each game that is played by their team. It is easier to analyze how strong a team is based on how they perform without their stars, and Week 3 proved that.

Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones silenced his critics in his Week 3 NFL debut. Jones showcased his accuracy with 2 passing touchdowns, and displayed his mobility as he added two more touchdowns on the ground. Behind their new quarterback, The Giants surged to an unlikely 32-31 comeback victory over the opposing Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

With franchise icon and future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees going down with a thumb injury, all eyes in New Orleans were on backup quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater delivered for the Saints as he took down a tough Seattle Seahawks team in his 2019 season debut behind 2 passing touchdowns.

The Carolina Panthers were another team who entered their Week 3 matchup without their QB1. As former league MVP Cam Newton watched from the sidelines, his backup Kyle Allen dazzled the Arizona Cardinals with 4 passing touchdowns against zero interceptions. Running back Christian McCaffrey helped the cause tallying 154 rushing yards and a touchdown on a whopping 24 carries. Allen’s heroics came at a perfect time as the Panthers earned a much needed first victory of the season.

While the aforementioned backup QBs were able to get the job done in Week 3, the same can not be said about Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph. With the news that starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will miss the entire season with an elbow injury, Rudolph was named the starter for Week 3. He responded with an underwhelming performance against the opposing San Francisco 49ers. Rudolph completed just 51.9% of his passes and threw an interception for the second straight contest. It will be interesting to see how the reeling Steelers club solidifies their quarterback situation moving forward.