The 7 Most Effective Offensive Players From Week 6
Week 6 gave us some great multi-touchdown games from many players. It was a solid week across the board for numerous players, and we get to see a repeat All-NEPer. There’s even a few lesser-known receivers who broke loose on Sunday. Let’s see who the Week 6 All-Net Expected Points (NEP) team consists of after a great week in the NFL.
Joe Flacco, Quarterback, Baltimore Ravens
Have yourself a day, Joe Flacco. Well, actually that should read, “have yourself a first quarter." Flacco came out on fire, slinging the rock Sunday afternoon against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the first quarter alone he threw four touchdown passes. What’s even more impressive was how crazy-efficient he was during that time. In the first quarter, Flacco was averaging a touchdown pass every three pass attempts. Had the Ravens not called back the dogs, Flacco, and the Ravens offense, could have set records with the way they were clicking.
Like I said, the Ravens scaled back a bit after their red-hot first quarter, and Flacco proceeded to throw only one more touchdown, which came early in the second quarter. He finished Sunday with five touchdown passes. And what kind of five-touchdown day would it have been if he didn’t find Steve Smith Sr. for a deep ball at least once? Flacco finished with a Passing NEP of 29.94, which is now the highest single-week performance this year, beating out Andrew Luck’s Week 4 outing.
Matt Forte, Running Back, Chicago Bears
Matt Forte has basically been the only “Top-4” running back to live up to his early first-round bill. He’s also been mighty effective for the real-life Bears these past few weeks and finally played well enough to find himself on the weekly All-NEP list. Forte rushed 17 times for 80 yards and 2 scores. He also added 10 catches for 77 yards. With another game of double-digit receptions, Forte now not only leads all running backs, but all players in the NFL with 46 receptions. His day was good enough for a Rushing NEP of 5.81 and a Total NEP of 10.51.
Forte didn’t find the end zone until later in the game, as he scored his first touchdown with about five minutes left in the third quarter. With the game tied at 13, Forte took the inside hand-off, from five yards out, and plunged into the end zone. His second was much of the same and came on a drive in which Forte converted two third-downs, including the touchdown run.
Arian Foster, Running Back, Houston Texans
For the second straight week, Arian Foster earned All-NEP honors. In a game that looked like another Thursday Night Football blowout - in favor of the Indianapolis Colts - Foster put the team on his back and was determined to try and remedy this. His first score came midway through the second quarter, and pulled the Texans within 10 points of the Colts. On a great run, Foster wove in and out of holes on his way to the 12-yard score. His second touchdown came from a little closer and gave the Texans only a one-score deficit to overcome.
The Texans came up short, but Foster did not. He ended Thursday with 23 touches, 141 total yards and 2 rushing touchdowns. His night earned him a Rushing NEP of 3.05 and a Total NEP of 3.62. He’s now worked his way up to 13th in Rushing NEP among running backs with at least 35 carries.
T.Y. Hilton, Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts
T.Y. Hilton has historically owned the Houston Texans over his short career, and that trend did not end Thursday night. Hilton went off, catching 9 passes for 223 yards and a score – higher than his average of 6 catches, 122 yards and 1.2 touchdowns against this team.
Hilton was very effective in this game and converted on third-down three different times. He also had 4 receptions that went for 30 or more yards, including his touchdown toward the end of the third quarter. This touchdown gave the colts a 13-point lead and would prove to be the game-winner as J.J. Watt had another pick-6 in the fourth quarter bringing the Colts’ lead back down to 6.
He finished Thursday with a freakishly-high Reception NEP of 19.81, which is now the highest single-week mark for a wide receiver this season. He’s now fourth among receivers in Reception NEP.
Andre Holmes, Wide Receiver, Oakland Raiders
Andre Holmes only caught four passes on Sunday, but he definitely made the most of them. On just the third play, Holmes caught his first touchdown of the game. On a 3rd-and-7 in Raider territory, Holmes used Chargers rookie cornerback, Jason Verrett, as a natural pick on Brandon Flowers at the line of scrimmage. He then proceeded to race downfield, beating Flowers up the seam, and catch the 77-yard bomb from Derek Carr.
His second touchdown was from much, much closer, but was also much, much more important. With 10 minutes left in the game, and the score tied at 21, Holmes caught a 6-yard touchdown pass from a rolling-out Carr.
Three of Holmes’ four catches were either a third down conversion and/or a touchdown. That’s a big reason for his high Reception NEP of 13.43.
Jordan Cameron, Tight End, Cleveland Browns
Like Holmes, Jordan Cameron didn’t catch very many balls on Sunday, but the ones he did catch were big-time plays. Cameron only caught 3 passes this week, but they went for 102 yards and a touchdown, good for a Reception NEP of 9.21. His touchdown came on 3rd-and-2 with about 10 minutes left in the first half. On play-action, Brian Hoyer stepped up and delivered the deep bomb to Cameron, who was streaking up the middle of the field.
Cameron made the most of his opportunities, as 2 of his 3 catches went for over 50 yards. The tight end, who has been battling injuries this season, finally showed flashes of what we saw from him last year. The Browns and their fans hope this is a sign of things to come, seeing as the team, not just Cameron, was clicking on all cylinders in a blow-out victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Brandon LaFell, Wide Receiver, New England Patriots
Surprisingly this is the first Patriot to make this list all season (surprising, considering the preseason hype, not in-season performance). Not only is he the first Patriot, he is not Rob Gronkowski, he is not Tom Brady, he is not even Shane Vereen. Nope the first All-NEP honor for the mighty New England Patriots belongs to free agent signee, Brandon LaFell.
LaFell caught two touchdowns against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. His first came on 3rd-and-12 from 18 yards out. His second was a 56-yard strike from Brady, during which he broke a tackle down the sideline and flipped into the end zone. LaFell is having himself a solid year in New England and earned a Reception NEP of 12.75 this week. He is now in the top-35 among all receivers in terms of Reception NEP.