William Moore vs. Michael Egnew, Sheldon Richardson vs. Colin Brown, Andrew Gachkar vs. Beau Brinkley, and Aldon Smith vs. himself. Plenty going on for the non-injured Tigers this week, although not all of it was good. Let's see what happened in Week 3.
William Moore, Atlanta Falcons
Just a great, great game from Moore this week. It would be a tragedy to ignore the fact that Willy Mo has developed himself into a top safety in the league and against the Dolphins he showed how versatile of a player he can be. Five tackles, two passes defensed, and a 19 yard interception is how a safety fills up the stat line. This defense will only improve when Sean Weatherspoon makes his return to help Moore lead this defense and it's clear Spoon was missed in the Falcons' 27-23 loss to the Dolphins in Miami.
Justin Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Well the 49ers have quickly become quite the mess this year, haven't they? Injuries all over the place, drama with a player we'll talk about shortly, and two huge losses against teams they need to compete with if they want to stay in the race for the Lombardi Trophy. One thing Niners fans can count on through all of this turmoil is that Justin Smith will NOT slow down for anything. Win or lose, this guy will continue to be a beast. He got to Andrew Luck in the backfield this week and brought down four other ball carriers in the 49ers lopsided 27-7 defeat to the Colts on Sunday.
Honestly, it's reassuring to see a guy keep his head down, his mouth shut, and let his play define him. A blue collar work ethic and a clean record has helped Justin get where he's at, and there's a reason his production is increasing instead of declining. Wish this next guy would learn a lesson or two from him.
Aldon Smith, San Francisco 49ers
First things first, I completely disagree with the decision to put him on the field this week for multiple reasons. First off, when you screw up it's completely unfair for you to be able to take the field with your teammates. When you make bad decisions like Aldon, you don't deserve to line up on an NFL football field. It's a privilege, not a right. Secondly, the guy clearly doesn't have his head on right. Why put a guy with these kinds of issues weighing him down out there to try and win you a football game? If those around him care about him as much as they say they do they need to get him help as soon as he needs it, not as soon as they're finished using him.
All of that being said, I understand Aldon has a problem. If it's truly a substance addiction, I've had friends and family members struggle with various substance abuse and as enraging as it is at times you have to love them through it. You want to scream at them and get them to understand how dumb their decisions are, but if it's truly an addiction it isn't that easy. This could also very well be a young man who doesn't understand moderation. When you have millions of dollars dropped in your lap overnight before you turn 30, that will do some things to you. Regardless of what is causing these bad decisions, Aldon needs to truly take in this help he'll be receiving and turn his life around, not only because his football team needs him but because these are problems that will follow him the rest of his life.
The good news is that he's still young and will get multiple chances to fix his issues, but he will eventually run out of those chances if he keeps it up. I'm rooting for him to turn things around.
Ziggy Hood, Pittsburgh Steelers
Not a great game for Ziggy. Speaking of messes, the Steelers are in a world of trouble this season. It's weird seeing Pittsburgh be one of the worst teams in the league as most of us are used to them being an elite force year in and year out. In a down year for his team, Ziggy needed to stand out and make a name for himself as a lot of the guys around him age and begin to move on from football. Two tackles on national TV in a game you desperately need to win to gain some momentum isn't what will do that for him.
Four tackles including a sack in a 27-20 victory against an upstart Bills squad, pretty good game right? It's too bad Sheldon's sack won't be remembered much because of this play. Fred Jackson rips off a 59 yard touchdown run because of this mistake. C'MON, MAN!
Colin Brown, Buffalo Bills
As stated earlier, the Bills lost a tough one to the Jets in Week 3. I'm a little confused as to why Buffalo wouldn't let Colin Brown and the other big guys up front do their thing and pave the way for Spiller a little more, but I'm also not an NFL coach. A disappointing loss to the Jets is tough to swallow after a big win last week over the Panthers. Gotta feel for Bills fans, some of the most loyal fans on the planet.
C.J. Mosley, Detroit Lions
I know it gets old to hear this, but Mosley will continue to be a depth guy as long as he's in Detroit. Too much talent in front of him to have an opportunity to make a big splash, but continue to make tackles when you're in and you'll stick around.
Andrew Gachkar, San Diego Chargers
Gachkar some some great playing time for the Chargers this week and rewarded them with a damn good game. Six total tackles and a forced fumble is a good game for a linebacker at any level, and it's great to see a guy who has been kicking butt on special teams for the past couple years get a chance to show himself. Although it was a heartbreaking last second 20-17 loss to the Titans, Gachkar can be happy with his performance.
Beau Brinkley, Tennessee Titans
Big win for the Titans. Beau Brinkley snapped the ball for them. Good job Beau.
Michael Egnew, Miami Dolphins
Egnew recorded his first career catch for the Dolphins in their big win over the talented Falcons. Great to see him get some sort of contribution, hope he sees the field more. Good on you, Mike.
Sean Weatherspoon (Atlanta Falcons, injured)
Danario Alexander (San Diego Chargers, injured)
Brad Smith (Buffalo Bills, injured)
Chase Coffman (Atlanta Falcons)
Chase Daniel (Kansas City Chiefs)
Zaviar Gooden (Tennessee Titans)
Tim Barnes (St. Louis Rams)
Kevin Rutland (FA)
Kip Edwards (FA)
Jacquies Smith (FA)
Elvis Fisher (FA)
Brad Madison (FA)
Kenronte Walker (FA)
Kendial Lawrence (FA)
Jerrell Jackson (FA)