OFFICIAL NEWS Week 7 recap: Ravens show off offensive fireworks, Eagles + Chiefs flirt with theirs…

Big upsets and big rookie performances defined a wild Sunday in the NFL. Matt Harmon and Scott Piankowski go game by game and provide their instant fantasy reactions and implications from all of the Week 7 action on Sunday:

1:59 – Dolphins vs. Eagles: Is ‘tush push’ hiding Hurts issues? Is Miami just a bad team killer?

17:30 – Browns vs. Colts: Can the Colts sustain two RBs all season?

28:36 – Ravens vs. Lions: Is this the Baltimore offense we dreamed of?

36:50 – Chiefs vs. Chargers: Does Rashee Rice unlock this KC offense?

45:15- Steelers vs. Rams: Did we overhype the Rams after underrating them?

50:14 – Patriots vs. Bills: Is it time for Buffalo to hit the panic button?

53:48 – Falcons vs. Buccaneers: Making sense of the Bijan Robinson debacle

59:45 – Seahawks vs. Cardinals: Did Seattle find a gem at WR? (No, not JSN)

1:04:38 – Broncos vs. Packers: Weird teams do weird things

1:08:15 – Giants vs. Commanders: Is it time for Washington to sack Howell?

1:12:30 – Bears vs. Raiders: Bagent of change… maybe hope?

A.J. Brown, and the margin for error with superstars

Let’s be real, the Eagles’ offense was not perfect on Sunday night. The unit has not looked completely cohesive in any game this season. Week 7 was more of the same, with flashes of brilliance and mind-boggling moments.

Jalen Hurts threw a pick 6 that brought Miami one of its two touchdowns on the night. He was rocky on Sunday night. He has been rocky all season. The offense appears to be trying to do too much and is too often neglectful of the easy layups it hit last season on RPOs, screens and other 2022 staples. DeVonta Smith hasn’t turned in a signature performance in many weeks. Hurts hasn’t made as many big plays on the ground. His fantasy rushing stats look great, mostly thanks to a little deodorant from the tush-push play.

And yet, through all that, Philadelphia brushes past one of the most dangerous offenses in the league and scores 31 points. All thanks to the efforts of a true superstar player in A.J. Brown.

Jackson had a near-perfect 155.8 passer rating with a beefy 13.2 yards per attempt. He scored four total touchdowns, three through the air and one on the ground. There have been mistakes but Jackson has played excellent football for stretches in 2023. Putting a performance like this into the box score will get the entire world to take notice.

Jackson distributed the ball to a variety of targets. Despite his high yardage total, no pass-catcher had more than 80 yards. The player who reached 80 was Gus Edwards, who scampered for 80 on his lone reception of the day. Nine Ravens caught a pass in Week 7. Just about all of them made a positive impact. How many seasons during Jackson’s career has Baltimore employed seven players worth considering for targets? Not many. This group isn’t perfect but when Jackson is playing outside of his mind like he was on Sunday, well, we see the results.

And let’s not get it twisted; let’s not revise history. The Detroit defense that Jackson cut up in Week 7 was a top-seven unit in EPA per play coming into the week. It was one of the stories of the season. Jackson made light work of the Lions’ efforts.

We all want results right away. The discussion and enthusiasm over Todd Monken’s impact on taking over this offense as coordinator was relentless during the offseason. If you were looking carefully so far this season, you could see the subtle signals it was working. In Week 7 it all came together. If Jackson continues to play at a high level and grows more comfortable with all Monken is asking of him, the Ravens will never look back.

The Colts have 2 starting fantasy WRs

The Colts suffered a crushing late loss in what felt like the longest game in NFL history. A few close penalty calls pushed the Browns to the goal line and they snagged the win in the end. That had to be a heartbreaking moment for the Colts and it’s worth noting that. While those of us on the outside can sit here and be excited about the silver linings, it doesn’t take away the real frustrations for the men on the field and others in the organization.

Those silver linings are still real and today it was the performance of their emerging wide receivers, Michael Pittman Jr. and Josh Downs.

Usually short-area threats, Pittman and Downs turned in chunk plays against the best defense in the NFL. Downs averaged 14 air yards per target, per Next Gen Stats and scored on a 59-yard catch and run play. Pittman checked in with 11.6 air yards per target and housed a 75-yard crossing route on a fourth-quarter reception. Gardner Minshew was far from perfect in Week 7 but he showed admirable aggressiveness we had not seen yet this season while pushing the ball against this fearsome Browns defense.

I’ve maintained that Pittman is the most underrated true No. 1 wide receiver in the NFL. We haven’t often seen it in the box score because quarterback play has been a mess but Pittman is a great player. He’s capable of handling immense volume and moves well for someone his size. The Colts can revolve their passing game around him and an accurate, functional quarterback can help show off his skills as a separator and big play threat down the field.

Downs has looked exactly as I expected him to in the NFL. He was one of “my guys” in the draft.

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