Week 6 in the NFL – Who’s Hot and Who’s Not?

We are just over a quarter of the way into the NFL season, so I thought I would briefly chat about the NFL.

Who’s hot?
In my opinion, the Houston Texans are probably the best team in football. They have a fantastic offense run by Matt Schaub, who is playing really solid football. They have a fantastic running attack in Arian Foster. Andre Johnson may be the best receiver in the NFL. Their defense is incredibly solid. Although they’ve recently lost Brian Cushing, Bradie James will be an adequate backup.

The Atlanta Falcons and the San Francisco 49ers are probably vying for that second spot. They’re both very solid on offense and on defense. The Atlanta Falcons seem to have a more explosive offense. The San Francisco 49ers have a much more suffocating defense. The only reason I can’t give a nod to the 49ers above the Atlanta Falcons is their inexplicable loss to the Minnesota Vikings. That was a head scratcher. Of course, they made up for the loss by destroying the New York Jets and absolutely spanked the Buffalo Bills.

I would like to give honorable mentions to the New England Patriots and the New York Giants. Tom Brady is having another tremendous season. The Patriot defense seems to be much improved over last year’s debacle. The New York Giants, who looked absolutely awful against the Dallas Cowboys in week one, have managed to put together a pretty solid season up until now. Eli Manning may be playing his best football. The thing that is going to hold the New York Giants back is their defense. Specifically, their secondary.

Who’s not?
Who is the worst team in the National Football League? Cleveland Browns? Oakland Raiders? Tennessee Titans? The New Orleans Saints? In the year 2012 the NFL has truly achieved parity. Every team, including those just mentioned. has a few superstars. Now, you have to have an outstanding coach who’s going to put his players in excellent positions so that they can make plays and excel. The New Orleans Saints have an interim coach who is exactly that – an interim coach. Sean Payton was an elite coach. The New Orleans Saints miss him dearly.

Dallas Cowboys
As most of you know, I’m a huge Dallas Cowboys fan. A friend of mine, also a Cowboy fan, came up to me the other day and predicted that the Dallas Cowboys were going to win against the Baltimore Ravens this week. I asked him which Dallas Cowboys he was talking about. The Baltimore Ravens are trying to figure out who they are. Are they a dominant defensive team that happens to have a good offense or are they an offensive team that happens to have a good defense? As I see the game playing out in my mind, I’m having a hard time coming up with a scenario in which the Dallas Cowboys walk away with a victory. The Baltimore Ravens are very good in the pits. Their offensive line is pretty good. They’re solid. Their defensive line is tremendous. The Dallas Cowboys have issues on their offensive line. They cannot block. They cannot pass block and they cannot run block. I would love to see the Dallas Cowboys come away with a dominant victory. For that matter, I would love for them to figure out how to come away with a W by hook or crook but I just don’t see it. I suspect the game will be close at halftime but Tony Romo will get beat up. Unless the Dallas Cowboys defense is able to force turnovers, I see the Cowboys losing this one.

Do you love the NFL? What games are you watching? Who’s the best? Let me know.

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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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