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Home / frontsports / The Wolf Sports Newsletter: November 21, 2023

The Wolf Sports Newsletter: November 21, 2023


Thanksgiving is this Thursday, and things around the NFL have heated up after a tight Week 11.

 

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Joe Burrow done for the year

 

Let’s start with the unfortunate news from last Thursday night, when Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow left the loss to the Ravens with a wrist injury. He tried to throw on the sideline and was in obvious pain and discomfort—unable to finish the game—and it turns out Burrow suffered a torn ligament in his right wrist and will miss the rest of the season. For a team that’s been to the AFC Championship Game and a Super Bowl the past two years, losing Burrow is obviously a crushing blow to their title hopes.

 

 

And for Baltimore, star tight end Mark Andrews also might be out for the year due to a leg injury. But, the wide receiver group continues to come together, with Odell Beckham Jr., Rashod Bateman, and Nelson Agholor all catching touchdowns in the win over Cincy. OBJ had his first 100-yard game since 2021 in the victory.

 

 

Week 11 NFL highlights

 

The Eagles came back to beat the Chiefs at Arrowhead, 21-17. Kansas City dominated the trenches for most of the game, but their second half struggles—including two huge drops on their final drive—continued. The Chiefs (7-3) have gotten away with it thanks to the play of their defense, but they average the fewest second-half points per game in the league this season. The Eagles are 9-1 ahead of a home matchup with Buffalo.

 

 

The Bills fired offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey leading up to Week 11, and everyone seems to have understood that Dorsey was almost a fall guy for Buffalo’s poor play. However, the early returns for interim offensive coordinator Joe Brady—the coordinator of the record-breaking loaded LSU offense with Joe Burrow—were very positive, with the Bills putting up 32 points in a blowout win over division rival New York (the first time the stingy Jets defense has allowed more than 30 points this season). The Bills ran an efficient attack that didn’t play through their receivers much, and the patience eventually paid off with the longest touchdown catch in the NFL this season for Khalil Shakir (81 yards) on a Josh Allen dart with Sauce Gardner in coverage.

 

 

 

‍♂️ Following the loss, the Jets are making a quarterback change, going with veteran Tim Boyle while benching No. 2 pick Zach Wilson. Boyle entered the game against the Bills, but the unit still struggled—and it’s obviously not been an ideal situation for a quarterback. The Jets next face the Dolphins for the NFL’s first Black Friday game on Prime Video (3:30 PM ET).

 

 Despite playing a sloppy game, the Dolphins were able to beat the Raiders behind two interceptions by Jalen Ramsey, who has been tremendous in his first three games with his new club. Star rookie running back De’Von Achane left the game early in his return from a knee injury, but he avoided a serious injury and is up in the air for Week 12. Head coach Mike McDaniels said Achane was lobbying to return against Vegas, but we’ll see if they want to remain patient on a short week.

 

 

The Browns defended homefield behind stellar defense, winning a grind-it-out game against the Steelers, 13-10. Rookie quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson started for Cleveland, but the team signed former Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco late Sunday. The Browns are now 7-3, and Flacco helps provide more insurance in the quarterback room if DTR struggles and they want to try something different in the playoff race. This morning, the Steelers fired offensive coordinator Matt Canada with the group struggling this season.

 

 

Bouncing back from three interceptions, Jared Goff led the Lions to a fourth-quarter comeback against the Bears to get Detroit to 8-2 for the first time since 1962. David Montgomery scored the game-winning touchdown against his former team with 29 seconds remaining, and it came shortly after Jameson Williams caught a 32-yard touchdown with 2:59 remaining.

 

 

Other Week 11 games:

 

  • Jaguars 34, Titans 14: Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars offense broke out of their slump, with Lawrence throwing two touchdowns and rushing for two more. Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson said after the game that the defense is the unit that’s kept them in most games this season and that they haven’t gotten enough recognition.
  • Packers 23, Chargers 20: Jordan Love threw for 322 yards and two touchdowns—including the game-winner on a nice go-ball to Romeo Doubs with 2:33 in the game—in a much-needed win for the Packers to get to 4-6. Meanwhile, Chargers head coach Brandon Staley continues to be under heavy fire with his team dropping to 4-6. And star pass rusher Joey Bosa left the game with a foot sprain and is likely to hit injured reserve for LA.
  • Texans 21, Cardinals 16: Rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud had three interceptions, but he also threw for 336 yards and two touchdowns while the Houston defense did a great job of getting off the field to get to 6-4. Stroud joined Joe Burrow as the only rookie quarterbacks in league history with three consecutive games of 300+ passing yards.
  • Cowboys 33, Panthers 10: Daron Bland tied a single-season NFL record with his astonishing fourth pick-six this year, and the Dallas defense racked up seven sacks (2.5 by Micah Parsons). The Panthers feel like a broken offense right now, as has been the case all season under first-year head coach Frank Reich, who took back the play-calling in Week 11. The Cowboys are also finally putting Super Bowl-winning head coach Jimmy Johnson into the franchise’s Ring of Honor.

 

 

  • Giants 31, Commanders 19: Despite sacking him nine times, the Commanders defense could not stop Tommy Devito through the air—a theme for Washington this season. Saquon Barkley scored twice in the Giants’ third win of the year. The Commanders have lost both games to New York this season, and the question is becoming what the next regime looks like under the new Josh Harris, Mitchell Rales, and Magic Johnson ownership group.
  • 49ers 27, Buccaneers 14: Christian McCaffrey started a new touchdown streak, and Brock Purdy continues to silence the doubters by recording a perfect passer rating. Unfortunately, San Francisco suffered a big loss on defense, though, with safety Talanoa Hufanga suffering a torn ACL.
  • Rams 17, Seahawks 16: In a game the Seahawks mostly controlled, the Rams came back with ten fourth-quarter points (without Cooper Kupp, who left with an ankle injury) for their second victory against the Seahawks this year to get to 4-6 and remain in the NFC wild-card race. Seattle drops to 6-4 ahead of a Thanksgiving Night matchup with the Niners.
  • Broncos 21, Vikings 20: Russell Wilson was again clutch to help the Broncos get their fourth consecutive win to climb back to .500 in Year 1 under Sean Payton. Denver’s tackling on defense still needs improvement, but the group is playing hard and keeping them in games with their style of play. However, the Broncos lost safety Kareem Jackson to another suspension (four games) “for repeated violations of playing rules intended to protect the health and safety of players,” including lowering his helmet to hit Vikings quarterback Joshua Dobbs within two minutes of his return from his previous two-game suspension (was four but had it reduced to two).

 

Top fantasy performers in Week 11

 

  • Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence: 32.18 points
  • Giants RB Saquon Barkley: 28.0 points
  • Jaguars WR Calvin Ridley: 27.6 points
  • 49ers QB Brock Purdy: 26.72 points
  • Chargers QB Justin Hebert: 25.7 points

 

(point totals are for half PPR scoring)

 

Other Sports Updates

College football highlights (team rankings from time of matchup):

 

  • No. 4 Florida State 58, Northern Alabama 13: CFP hopeful Florida State improved to 11-0, but star quarterback Jordan Travis’ college career very sadly came to an end after a devastating leg injury in the win.
  • No. 5 Washington 22, No. 11 Oregon State 20: Michael Penix Jr. (three total touchdowns) and the Huskies survived in a challenging road environment in the Pac-12.
  • UCLA 38, USC 20: With unsubstantiated rumors about his job security swirling, Chip Kelly’s Bruins won emphatically in the Coliseum for what might have been Caleb Williams’ final college football game.
  • No. 3 Michigan, 31, Maryland 24: The Wolverines held off a comeback attempt to remain unbeaten ahead of “The Game” this Saturday at noon ET. Head coach Jim Harbaugh decided to accept his three-game suspension imposed by the Big Ten and will not be on the sidelines for the critical matchup.
  • No. 10 Louisville 38, Miami 31: The Cards handed the Hurricanes their second home loss this season, improving to 10-1 while remaining in the CFP discussion.
  • No. 17 Arizona 42, No. 22 Utah 18: The Wildcats stayed red-hot, with their fifth consecutive victory.
  • No. 9 Missouri 33, Florida 31: The trio of Brady Cook, Cody Schrader, and Luther Burden all had strong performances to help Mizzou improve to 9-2.
  • No. 19 Notre Dame 45, Wake Forest 7: Fighting Irish quarterback Sam Hartman threw four touchdowns in the comfortable victory over his former team.
  • Appalachian State 26, James Madison 23 (OT): App State ended JMU’s undefeated season at 10-0 on a game-winning touchdown by Kaedin Robinson in the first overtime period.

 

MLB awards, headlined by Shohei Ohtani becoming the only player in history to win two unanimous MVPs:

 

  • AL MVP: Angels DH/SP Shohei Ohtani
  • NL MVP: Braves OF Ronald Acuna Jr.
  • AL Cy Young: Yankees SP Gerrit Cole
  • NL Cy Young: Padres SP Blake Snell
  • AL Rookie of the Year: Orioles IF Gunnar Henderson
  • NL Rookie of the Year: Diamondbacks OF Corbin Carroll

 

⚾️ The Phillies re-signed pitcher Aaron Nola to a seven-year, $172 million contract.

 

The Athletics have officially relocated to Las Vegas after MLB approval.

 

Padres owner Peter Seidler passed away at 63.

 

 

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