Minnesota Vikings: Dalvin Cook, RB
The Vikings fall short once again as they traveled to Baltimore to face to the No.1 ranked team in the AFC. Minnesota played an electric game with a 98-yard kick return, zero sacks allowed, and two interceptions but couldn’t find the uprights in overtime losing 34-31.
Dalvin Cook led the Vikings backfield in a matchup where the second rusher was basically nonexistent. The Pro Bowl running back concluded the game with 110 yards on 17 carries and 12 yards on three receptions. He had a 6.47 average rush which is the highest this season. The Vikings now fall to 3-5 and haven’t found much success on the road with a 1-3 away record.
Los Angeles Rams: Jalen Ramsey, CB
The Rams lost their first game in over a month to the extremely hot Tennessee Titans. Their defense seemed to be playing catchup throughout the whole game with two vital interceptions thrown by Mathew Stafford.
Jalen Ramsey went head to head with young star A.J. Brown as things got chippy just minutes into the game. Ramsey read the play perfectly and jumped right at the cut, securing his third interception of the season in the first quarter. He paired that interception with one tackle for loss and three solo tackles, holding the Titans receiver to 42 yards on the evening. The Rams move on to Week 10 to face division rivals San Fransisco 49ers in what should be a comfortable bounce back game.
Carolina Panthers: Brian Burns, DE
Carolinas trouble continue as they fall to 4-5 in a relatively competitive division. They are now sitting at last place in the NFC South with a gut wrenching 24-6 loss to the New England Patriots.
The Panthers had to rely on Brian Burns and the defense to get them back in the game after QB Sam Darnold threw for three interceptions. Burns found the gap yet again and finished the ball game with one sack, one QB hit, one tackle for loss, one forced fumble, and five total tackles. Despite the monster game from Burns and players like Stephon Gilmore having a big impact the Panthers couldn’t find the end zone and didn’t have any success on offense.
Los Angeles Chargers: Derwin James, SS / Asante Samuel Jr., CB / Dustin Hopkins, K
The Los Angeles Chargers creep into first place in the AFC West after a crucial win against the Philadelphia Eagles. FSU alum Dustin Hopkins was the hero of the match with a game clinching field goal to end the fourth quarter after just two weeks with the team.
Hopkins and the Chargers head back to L.A. with a 27-24 victory feeling comfortable as a two game home stand awaits. Safety Derwin James didn’t deal with a star studded receiving room for the Eagles but he had his hands full with rookie DeVonta Smith and running back Jordan Howard. James had five tackles on the night and played a shorter game with the linebackers up front.
Rookie Asante Samuel Jr. was inactive as he was evaluated for a concussion last week and was not cleared under the NFL’s protocol.
Baltimore Ravens: Devonta Freeman, RB
The Ravens close out yet another tight win against the Minnesota Vikings at home. Baltimore found themselves in overtime for the third time this season and despite crucial mistakes late in the game they were able to seal the win with arguably the best kicker in football, Justin Tucker.
Veteran Devonta Freeman was the lead back anchoring the Ravens run game to 247 yards. Freeman finished the contest with 79 yards on the ground while plugging in six with a receiving touchdown late in the second quarter. He’s been more active in the pass catching realm, lining up on the outside for key targets in the offense. The Ravens stay on top of the AFC North with a comfortable two game lead, heading into the next two weeks to face back to back teams under .500.