Bills seek revenge against the Chiefs, Cowboys and Eagles' streak on the line

By Sports Desk October 14, 2022

The NFL season is well under way, with Week 6 set to mark the point where over a third of the regular season has been played.

Playoff hopes are starting to rise and crucial games are on the horizon, with the Minnesota Vikings looking to provide a further boost against a Miami Dolphins side that have lost their rhythm after a perfect start.

Elsewhere, revenge is on the cards for the Buffalo Bills against the Kansas City Chiefs, who have shattered their dreams in back-to-back seasons, while there is plenty on the line in the NFC East contest between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Dallas Cowboys.

With a wealth of entertainment on offer, Stats Perform has crunched the Opta data to preview this weekend's contests.

Minnesota Vikings (4-1) @ Miami Dolphins (3-2)

After starting the season 3-0, the Dolphins have suffered back-to-back defeats by 12 and 23 points respectively, becoming only the second team in the Super Bowl era to start a campaign 3-0 but then lose their next two games by at least a dozen points – the other being the 1994 Chiefs.

However, the Dolphins have won their last three games against NFC teams by double-digit scores, marking the first time they have had such a streak against the NFC since a five-game stint from 1978 to 1979.

With quarterback duo Tua Tagovailoa not expected to return this weekend and Terry Bridgewater out due to concussion, rookie Skylar Thompson looks set to make his first career start against the Vikings and will need help from Tyreek Hill, who is the only player in NFL history with at least 7,000 receiving yards, 7,000 rushing yards and 700 punt return yards in his career.

The Dolphins' clash with the Vikings could go down right to the wire, with Minnesota having trailed with less than five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter and come back to win in each of their last three matches for the first time in their franchise history, as well as being the first time any team has done so since the Lions in 2014.

The only team in NFL history to have such a comeback in four straight games was the Denver Broncos in 2011, led by quarterback Tim Tebow.

Buffalo Bills (4-1) @ Kansas City Chiefs (4-1)

The Chiefs have ended the Bills' season in each of the last two campaigns, including a 42-36 overtime win in the divisional round in 2021. In the last eight meetings, including the post season, Kansas City are 6-2, but one of those losses came at home in Week 5 last season.

Patrick Mahomes continues to be the leading man for the Chiefs, with the 30-29 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders last week marking the 40th time the Chiefs have had a game with at least 30 points since he became full-time starter in 2018. The only other team with more than 30 such games is the New Orleans Saints (35).

A tough test against the Bills defense awaits, however, with Buffalo allowing just three broken tackles this season, only the Washington Commanders having fewer (2). In contrast, the Chiefs' defense has allowed 12 broken tackles, only Houston and Las Vegas (both 15) having more.

Offensively, the Bills head to Kansas City on the back of a 38-3 triumph against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 5, marking their second win by at least 34 points this season, having beaten the Titans 41-7 in Week 2. Only in 1992 and 2021 have they had multiple such wins in a season (twice in each).

Dallas Cowboys (4-1) @ Philadelphia Eagles (5-0)

For the first time, the NFC East rivals will face off with both teams entering the contest on the back of a single-season winning streak of at least four games, and the Cowboys have a historical edge after three consecutive wins by a margin of 20 or more points.

The Cowboys have held each of their five opponents so far this season to 20 points or under for the first time since 1972, while only two teams in the last 10 years have done so in six straight games to start a season – the 2013 Chiefs (9) and 2019 New England Patriots (8).

Keeping Jalen Hurts and the Eagles offense at bay will be a stern test though, with Hurts setting an NFL record by becoming the first QB to have a five-start span, at any point, where he passed for 250+ yards per game, rushed for 50+ yards per game, rushed for 5+ touchdowns and went undefeated.

From the first five games of the season, the Eagles have averaged 400+ yards of offense and have not lost a single fumble during that span.


The Los Angeles Rams host the Carolina Panthers on the back of a 22-10 home defeat to the Cowboys in Week 5, with all three of their losses this season seeing the Rams score 10 or fewer points and lose by at least 10 points. From 2017-2021, they only had five such games.

The Arizona Cardinals head to the Emerald City boasting a strong record against the Seattle Seahawks, sitting 6-3 in the last nine road games. That is tied for the best record by any teams with at least two games played in Seattle since 2013 (Atlanta and New Orleans both 2-1).

The Cleveland Browns face the Patriots, having led at the start of the fourth quarter in all five games so far this season. However, they sit 2-3 (.400) in comparison to the rest of the NFL, which combines for 51-15-1 (.769).

Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady is tied with Charlie Conerly for most career passing touchdowns against the Steelers (29 each), who he faces in Week 6. With one more, the Steelers would become the fifth team Brady has thrown at least 30 TD's against – joining the Colts, Jets, Dolphins and Bills.

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    Seattle claimed their third-straight victory in dominant fashion as the Seahawks’ defence monstered the New York Giants en route to a 24-3 win.

    The Seahawks sacked Giants quarterback Daniel Jones 10 times and came away with two interceptions, including a 97-yard pick six to rookie Devon Witherspoon.

    The visitors opened the scoring at the end of the first quarter, Geno Smith finding DK Metcalf in the end zone on a six-yard reception.

    New York were able to cut the gap through a 55-yard field goal from Graham Gano.

    But the Giants’ offence was no match for Seattle’s defence and did not look like scoring again from there.

    Seattle found the end zone again just before half-time and Witherspoon’s third-quarter score ultimately sealed the 21-point victory.

  • Colts' Taylor to come off PUP list, could play in Week 5 Colts' Taylor to come off PUP list, could play in Week 5

    The Indianapolis Colts could be getting a big part of their offence back for Sunday's game against the visiting Tennessee Titans.

    The Colts will activate Jonathan Taylor from the physically unable to perform list this week, and depending how he looks in practise, he could be on the field for their next game.

    Indianapolis' first practise of the week is Wednesday, and it will mark Taylor's first of the season after he was placed on the PUP list at the start of training camp while recovering from ankle surgery.

    Colts coach Shane Steichen told reporters on Monday that Taylor is excited to rejoin the Colts and get back to work.


    The ankle injury wasn't the only issue this offseason for Taylor, as the 2021 NFL rushing champion had been mired in a contract dispute and had requested a trade.

    Taylor, the runner-up for the NFL's Offensive Player of the Year in 2021, is entering the final season of his rookie deal and is scheduled to earn $4.3 million in 2023.

    The fourth-year pro ran for a franchise-record 1,811 yards in 2021, but was slowed by injuries last year and was put on the PUP list earlier this summer as he recovered from ankle surgery that ended his 2022 campaign in December.

    Ankle issues limited Taylor to 11 games last season, which he finished with 861 rushing yards and four touchdowns while averaging 4.5 yards per attempt.

    Taylor averaged 5.5 yards per carry during his sensational 2021 season in which he also tied for the NFL lead with 20 total touchdowns while playing in all 17 games.

    He'll be joining a 2-2 team that got No. 4 overall pick Anthony Richardson back in Sunday's 29-23 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Rams after the rookie quarterback suffered a concussion in Week 2. 

    Without Taylor in the fold, Zack Moss has emerged as the team's No. 1 running back, and has rushed for 280 yards with a touchdown through three games.

  • Damar Hamlin: NFL return after cardiac arrest ‘meant everything’ Damar Hamlin: NFL return after cardiac arrest ‘meant everything’

    Damar Hamlin said his return to the NFL “meant everything” nine months after suffering a cardiac arrest on the pitch.

    The Buffalo Bills safety collapsed during a game in Cincinnati on January 2 and had to be resuscitated before being rushed to hospital.

    Hamlin was cleared to resume his career and made his first NFL appearance on Sunday in the Bills’ 48-20 victory over the Miami Dolphins.

    He told a post-match press conference: “That moment meant everything to me.

    “I think it was more about proving something to myself than anything else, showing myself that I have the courage, I have the strength, I’ve got the pride, all those words, in me.

    “To go through something so dramatic and be able to come back from it and to be able to still do what I love at the highest level in the world is amazing.”

    Hamlin was the last player to emerge from the tunnel prior to the match and ran the length of the field before removing his helmet and soaking up the acclaim of the crowd.

    Hamlin could be in the Bills’ side next Sunday when they travel to London to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

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