What do you expect when a team averaging 30.8 ppg (Ravens), and a defense allowing a league low 22.4ppg (Seahawks) heading into Week 6 face each other? How about a combined 17 TDs, 7 INTs & a fumble-recovery for good measure? This game had a combined score of 119 points. Heading into this game, the Seahawks had only scored 126 point on the season. Both teams were absolutely bonkers! Maybe we should have seen this coming, as very early on in the game, the Seahawks attempted a deep pass which was in the hands of Ammar Jessa… but just like Alshon Jeffrey, it slipped through his fingers and ended up with Shoaib Mamdani for an easy touchdown. It was TD-galore in this game with 5 players with at least 2 receiving TDs. It’s a testament to these QBs who do a wonderful job spreading the ball around.
The final score of the game was 63-56, but that has to be a shocking final. The Seahawks had 6 turnovers in this game (5 INTs, and 1 Fumble loss)! You’d have to think if they did a better job taking care of the ball, they may have had this game with ease. The Seahawks are the only other team besides the 1st place Lions to have a positive Pt. differential – which makes you think they’re a better team than their record (1-4-1). The Seahawks were glad to have Abuzar Abbas in this one as he had 4 receiving TDs to lead the team in that category this week, and earn himself the offensive player of the week.
The Ravens welcomed back Ammar Jessa who had 2 interceptions this game, and while he had minimal impact on offense, his teammates picked up the slack this week. Ahsan Raza had 3 TDs, while Hussein Champsi and Ali Merali combined for 14 catches and 4 TDs. Muhammad Ali also chipped in with a TD and 2 interceptions. Hisham Ali had the deep ball working but he didn’t need it much as the Ravens worked with a short field on a number of occasions. Hisham Ali now has the second most passing TDs in the league at 29.
We previewed this last week, and mentioned that we expected this game to be intense. The Patriots were coming off being shut-out by the Seahawks (who just gave up 63 pts in Week 6), and they had a mid-week practice to improve their play. It was a mixed bag for the Patriots in this game, as they came out with unmatched aggression early in the game as Mehdi Nasser picked off Said Samater. The Raiders continued playing man defense, as they have elite speed, and have played man defense on just about every team in the league. In a second consecutive week, Khizer Jamal continued to struggle against man defense going 18/32 with 3 passing TDs, 2 INTs and 3 sacks. Khalil Najarali had his best offensive output of the season with 4 receptions and 1 TD. Farhan Ratansi had 7 receptions and 2 TDs; this is the 3rd consecutive week where Farhan has led his team in receptions.
While the Patriots did a great job defensively early in the game, the situation changed once Taha Ali arrived, and changed the dynamic of the game. Taha Ali and Ammar Dayani both had 5 receptions and a TD each. They have worked well together getting each other open, and getting their teammates open. Said Samater was 14/23 this game, but it wasn’t entirely on him. Early on, his team didn’t do him any favours with the drop routinely putting their QB in a tough position on 3rd and 4th down. Said was able to keep the damage to a minimum as he only had one interception this game (leading the league with 11 interceptions). The star of the game for the Raiders was Mohamed Railey. He was a demon on the defensive side of the ball, playing the corner, and rushing the QB at various points in the game – ended with 2 sacks, 3 flag grabs and 3 pass deflections. The Raiders continued their streak of winning every other week, this could be good news for the Seahawks.
The Panthers were undefeated in their last 3 games, and they were a confident bunch heading into this game facing the 1st place Lions. The Panthers allowed 56 points in their first meeting to the Lions, since then their defense has improved. The Panthers were allowing 21ppg in their last 3 games heading into Week 6, and whatever defensive strategies they had, went out the window in this one. The Lions methodically picked them apart early and often in this one scoring 42 points. QB Kumail Meghani continues his torrid pace and is now averaging 4.5 TD for every interception (1st in the league). Asghar Molu is also enjoying a career season, currently on pace for 30 TDs (his career high is 18 set back in 2017). The Lions have 5 players in the league with at least 5 TDs (only team in the league), and sit comfortably in first place at 5-1-0 with a +69 point-differential.
The Panthers might be a matchup-based team this year, as the Lions are one team that have handled them comfortably in Weeks 1 & 6. They will now face the Patriots who also put up 56 points in their first matchup. The Patriots might be salivating over this matchup as their offense has gone dry in the last couple of games. The lone bright spot for the Panthers continues to be Alla Al-Salem who had 7 receptions and 2 TDs. Danial Ali had an unusually quiet game with 1 reception – the Panthers won’t be able to win against the top teams without their top players performing better. The Panthers don’t lack confidence even after this defeat, as Muzammil Rizvi exclaimed “See you in the Finals!” after the game.
See you in the Finals! – Muzammil Rizvi