Texans 13, Jaguars 10Houston continued its undefeated season against teams from Florida, an impressive streak that might actually mean anything if the Texans weren't 0-6 against every team not from Florida this year.
"If only we had the Buccaneers on the schedule," head coach Gary Kubiak wished aloud, "we just might be able to finish the season 4-12." On the plus side, even without Tampa Bay in their future, the Texans have already impressed fans and experts with their third win, which is—paradoxically—four more than anyone predicted they'd have.
Steelers 38, Saints 31Now that the season is half over, the Steelers have decided to start playing football. Willie Parker drew comparisons to "Frenchy" Fuqua—which, to clarify for non-Steeler fans, is a good thing—running for 213 yards and two touchdowns. The single game total was equal to about one third of what he got in the entire first half of the season combined.
"All part of the plan," laughed Parker. "We just have to save our energy and when the playoff come around and everyone else is tired... we POUNCE!" Parker's extended plan involves putting all the Steelers into cryogenic freezers and thawing them just before the playoffs begin. When it was pointed out the Steelers would end the season 3-13 by virtue of forfeit under his plan, Parker shrugged and dismissed critics. "So we'll be a wild card. We won it all last year as a wild card too."
Broncos 17, Raiders 13Oakland committed a bunch of penalties that completely blew their shot at winning this game, including one really stupid one that almost handed the win to Denver. I didn't watch the game or bother reading any recaps, but I've seen the Raiders play before and feel pretty safe that my summary is accurate. Just looking at the score, I'm also willing to go out on a limb and say Jake Plummer threw a few interceptions that kept Oakland in the game, but the Broncos defense stepped up and held of the silver and black to secure the victory.
Go ahead, prove me wrong.
Panthers 24, Buccaneers 10When last these two teams met, Tampa Bay quarterback Chris Simms was tackled so hard his spleen exploded like an overripe pumpkin dropped from a fifth story window. Monday night, his jealous teammates did everything they could to join him and leave this 2-7 nightmare.
"Whenever I ran a route across the middle, I tried to keep my ribs exposed," receiver Joey Galloway explained, raising his arms over his head to demonstrate, "and when I wasn't running routes across the middle, I ran across the middle anyway... and called the safeties' mothers rude names."
Ravens 27, Titans 26Steve McNair's triumphant return to Tennessee was capped by an impressive game-winning rally from 19 points down to give Baltimore its best start in team history. The former Titan's three touchdown passes reminded many fans of a time when their team didn't suck major ass week in and week out.
Capitalizing on the good feelings generated by McNair's return, former Titans tight end Frank Wychek convinced a cashier at the Piggly Wiggly to accept his "Buy Two, Get One Free" coupon for Irish Spring, despite its having expired October 31st.
Seahawks 24, Rams 22Someone outside of St. Louis and the Pacific Northwest noticed these two teams were playing one another, with Seattle hoping to help lock up the NFC West. Noticed, but didn't necessarily care. The Shaun Alexander/Matt Hasselbeck-less Seahawks posted their second straight win and took a two game lead in the division, though without those stars in the lineup, not many have noticed.
"Aw," groaned one of the few fans to pay attention to the game, "Josh Brown only kicked one field goal? And it wasn't even a very long one! He only got me six points in my fantasy league. I knew I should have started Rian Lindell!"