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Cal in the NFL: Week 7

Our winningest week yet!

New York Giants v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Well, They Played

These guys will show up on the stat sheet but may have not had the greatest of contributions in their respective games.

  • Lorenzo Alexander and the Buffalo Bills got crushed by the Los Angeles Chargers by a score of 37-5 this past Sunday. Alexander recorded a single tackle in the loss.
  • The New Orleans Saints were able to pick up a 24-23 victory against the Washington Redskins this past Sunday. Despite the win, Cameron Jordan had a lackluster performance with just two tackles.
  • The woes continue for Detroit Lions’ receiver Marvin Jones Jr., as he had just 29 yards on three catches (four targets). The Lions did manage to pick up a 32-21 win over the Miami Dolphins.

Solid Performances

Some solid, albeit unspectacular, performances from our former Bears contributed to some big wins for their respective teams.

  • DeSean Jackson struggled to get much going through the air on Sunday, catching two of four targets for just 25 yards. However, he did run for eight yards on two carries, taking one of them for a touchdown that proved to be crucial in a 26-23 overtime win over the Cleveland Browns.
  • Our other Buccaneers representative, punter Bryan Anger, also had a solid performance in the win. Anger’s 46.8 yard per punt average on his four punts was a new season high for him. He did pick up his first touchback of the season, but he also had one punt inside the 20, his sixth of the year.
  • Once again, the Los Angeles Rams didn’t ask Jared Goff to do much in a game that would end up being a blowout victory. This week, it was a 39-10 win over the San Francisco 49ers. Goff completed 18/24 passes for 202 yards and two touchdowns in a win that improves the Rams record to 7-0 on the season.
  • Alex Mack and the Atlanta Falcons picked up a 23-20 win over the New York Giants on Monday Night Football. Mack and the rest of the Falcons offensive line had an okay game, allowing three sacks but blocking well enough for Matt Ryan to throw for 379 yards on the day. The running game, on the other hand, didn’t have quite as much success, averaging 3.3 yards on their 20 carries.

Stars of the Week

The top performances from Week 7.

  • The Los Angeles Chargers picked up a close 20-19 victory over the Tennessee Titans this past week. Continuing a theme on the year, Keenan Allen had a performance that won’t necessarily pop out at you on that stat sheet, but that doesn’t mean you can undermine its significance. He operated as Phillip Rivers’ safety blanket during the game, catching all five of his targets for a grand total of 72 receiving yards.
  • On the defensive side of the Chargers’ win, defensive tackle Brandon Mebane had six tackles. He is now 22nd in the NFL among all defensive linemen with 22 tackles on the season.
  • I finally couldn’t resist putting Mitchell Schwartz in the stars of the week. The Kansas City Chiefs had yet another dominant offensive blowout victory, this time coming by a score of 45-10 over the Cincinnati Bengals. While it definitely is hard to give a single offensive lineman such a high grade for a single game, this ranking more reflects me finally giving him the recognition he deserves for the season he has been putting together. His amazing play this season even prompted Bleacher Report to call him the best right tackle in the league. So yeah, he is definitely deserving of a spot on this list.

Player of the Week

  • Giorgio Tavecchio, K, Atlanta Falcons

Aaron Rodgers was on a bye, Jared Goff had a boring performance, and no one else truly stood out as far as individual performances go this week. That is unless you count kickers! Giorgio Tavecchio was brought on by the Atlanta Falcons this past week to be an injury replacement for Matt Bryant, and now you can add Tavecchio to the list of players that Raiders’ coach Jon Gruden should have kept. Tavecchio showed exactly why he belongs in the NFL, converting both of his extra points and converting field goal tries of 40 and 50 yards before hitting a 56-yarder that put the Falcons up by two scores (Odell Beckham would score with 5 seconds left in the game to make it a 23-20 final, so feel free to call this a game winner if you want). This was truly a great performance, especially for someone’s first game of the season, and for that I could not ignore him.

So that is the story of how a kicker won our player of the week. None of us should feel ashamed, either.

Week 7 In Recap

  • Despite it being one of our poorest weeks in terms of individual performances, it was our winningest week of the season, as our Cal players went 10-1 on the week!
  • The average scores of those games favored us as well, giving us a 26-20 win.

Season Record: 60–35–2

Weekly W/L Record: 5-0-2

Pythagorean Win-Loss: 5–2

Bears Record: 4–3