NFL

Brady's Bucs and Rodgers' Packers both 3-4 after latest upsets

By Sports Desk October 23, 2022

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' dismal season plumbed new depths as they remarkably lost 21-3 to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday.

Tom Brady's Bucs had slipped to 3-3 with last week's unexpected defeat to the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the team now have a losing record for the first time since the legendary quarterback lost his 2020 debut. Only in 2002, when he missed the playoffs, had Brady previously had a losing record at the end of Week 7.

This reverse was perhaps even more surprising than the Steelers upset, as P.J. Walker, Carolina's third-choice QB, led a Panthers team who had traded away star running back Christian McCaffrey this week.

Following that trade with the San Francisco 49ers, Steve Wilks, the interim head coach since Matt Rhule's October 10 firing, insisted: "There's no such thing as tanking when it comes to myself and the guys in that locker room."

The Panthers backed up that statement by dominating Brady and the Bucs, who were held to three points or fewer for the third time in their three seasons together. A Brady offense had three points or fewer only twice in his entire New England Patriots career.

The Bucs were scoreless through three quarters, in which time Carolina scored two touchdowns – Walker with a 20-yard completion to DJ Moore, before Chuba Hubbard, with just six carries through six weeks alongside McCaffrey, ran in from 17 yards.

Ryan Succop's field goal at the start of the fourth quarter was not to set the stage for a dramatic turnaround, as Walker's 29-yard pass to Tommy Tremble completed the job.

Rodgers also loses once more

Brady's fellow veteran Aaron Rodgers also dropped to 3-4 as the Green Bay Packers lost for the third week running, beaten 23-21 by the Washington Commanders.

The Packers have suffered three straight defeats for the first time since 2018, with Rodgers unable to rally late on after a first half in which he had only 47 passing yards – his second-lowest career mark after 15 or more attempts before halftime.

Dak back but defense dominates

Dak Prescott returned from injury as the Dallas Cowboys beat the Detroit Lions 24-6, although the victory owed more to running back Ezekiel Elliott and the team's defense than their QB. Prescott threw for 207 yards and a TD, as Elliott ran in for a pair of scores while Jared Goff was sacked five times and picked off twice.

Joe Burrow, the Cincinnati Bengals' QB, was far more influential as he threw for 481 yards and three TDs in a 35-17 win against the Atlanta Falcons. That yardage ranks third in a regular season Bengals game all-time, although the 525-yard record already belongs to Burrow (v Ravens, 2021).

The Tennessee Titans' Derrick Henry enjoyed a record-setting performance in victory over AFC South rivals the Indianapolis Colts, rushing for 128 yards. He has 1287 career rushing yards versus the Colts, the most of any Titan against any one team.

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