Thursday August 14 th, 2008
Pittsburgh 21, Buffalo 24
Both starting quarterbacks (Ben Roethlisberger, and Trent Edwards) made little mistakes, both going 9 for 11 with 100+ passing yards, while Byron Leftwich made his first appearance in Pittsburgh black and gold. Buffalo’s Edwards has made a strong campaign for the starting job so far, and Dick Jauron would be a fool to start Losman over Edwards come week 1.
Carolina 13, Philadelphia 24
Jake Delhomme made his anticipated return from Tommy John surgery, completing 9 of 14 passes in the process. But, Kevin Kolb, and Tony Hunt stole the show. Kolb jump-started a Philadelphia scoring-spurt late in the fourth quarter with 33-yard toss to Greg Lewis for their first score of the evening with 6:41 to play. Just 30 seconds later Philly added a 40-yard field goal to that, cutting their deficit to just three points. Four short minutes later, Hunt ran for a 51-yard TD to take the lead for good. Philly added injury to insult with a Justin Roland 74-yard interception returned for a TD after Carolina’s Matt Moore attempted a last-minute scoring drive.
Friday August 15 th, 2008
Adimchinobi Echemandu, and rookie running back Darren McFadden ran for 44 yards on six carries in his second NFL game. But, Tennessee’s third-string QB, 26-year old Ingle Martin, lead a late scoring drive. The scoring drive was capped by a game-winning 33-yard field goal hit by John Vaughn as time expired. Tennessee came out on top, despite Vince Young’s early struggles, finishing 4 for 13, with 37 yards passing.
The much-anticipated Brett Favre debut finally happened on Saturday night in New York. Favre’s first TD pass as a Jet came with five minutes to play in quarter number one. Favre threw a short 4-yarder to rookie TE Dustin Keller, who finished with 2 catches for 26 yards, and 1 TD. But, Washington’s rookie QB Colt Brennan led a last-minute scoring drive which ended with a 33-yard TD toss to Jason Goode. Washington held off the eager Jets 13-10.
Tarvaris Jackson left the game early with a sprained MCL, but Gus Frerotte, and Brooks Bollinger picked up where he left off, throwing for 132 yards, and a TD. Baltimore’s rookie RB Ray Rice, and second-year QB Troy Smith tore up the turf, running for a combined 112 yards, and a TD (6-yard run by Rice in 1 st QTR). As a team, Baltimore ran for 7.9 yards per carry, but turned the ball over twice, with 6 penalties. Minnesota took the 8-point victory in the end, but suffered a huge blow when T-Jack went down.
Matt Leinart led the team with 62 passing yards, and one TD pass, leading Arizona to the 10-point victory. But, Kansas City saw some positive out of 24-year old QB Tyler Thigpen. Thigpen attempted a majority of the Chiefs’ passes for 174 yards, including a last-second TD pass to Sergiori Joachim from 14 yards out. Arizona came out on top with no turnovers and just 3 penalties all game.
Travis Minor scored the game’s only TD, when he ran for a three-yard score late in the third quarter. Nate Kaeding’s two first quarter field goals proved not enough. Marc Bulger threw for 2 interceptions, and completed just 7 of his 14 pass attempts, but the Rams’ offense dominated anyway. They outgained San Diego 309-203, and accumulated nearly twice as many first downs (21-11).
Steve Slaton ran for his first career NFL TD early in the fourth quarter. The TD put Houston on top for good. Both starting quarterbacks had great games stat-wise. Matt Schaub completed 14 of 16, and Drew Brees 12 of 17. Both teams defenses struggled to stop the opposing offense from scoring.
Jay Cutler had a fantastic game for the second consecutive week. This time, Cutler completed 16 of his 20 passes for 178 yards, and a TD pass to his favorite receiver, Brandon Marshall, in the second quarter. Denver controlled the ball for 33 of the 60 minutes of play, and had no turnovers with just 6 penalties. On the other side of the ball, Denver’s defense allowed just 70 yards on the ground to the Cowboys as rookie RB Felix Jones saw just 3 carries for 17 yards. Third-string Dallas QB Richard Bartel threw the game’s only interception to Denver’s rookie CB Jack Williams from Kent State. Kicker Matt Prater, taking over for Jason Elam, was the difference, kicking three field goals through the uprights in the third and fourth quarter of play.
Aaron Rodgers’ second game as the new Green Bay QB didn’t go as well as expected. Rodgers completed 9 of 16 for 58 yards, and failed to conduct a drive resulting in a TD in his quarter of play. San Fran’s QB J.T. O’Sullivan gained some ground in the Niners’ QB race by going 8 for 17 for 154 yards, a TD, and an INT in San Francisco’s big 34-6 victory on Saturday. The 49er defense sacked Green Bay’s quarterbacks six times, and recovered three of their fumbles…Things aren’t looking too good in Green Bay right now. Rodgers better step up his game when September rolls around.
Brandon Coutu booted a 36-yarder through the uprights for an instant win. The field goal was his fifth of the game, an impressive night for Coutu, as he outkicked Chicago’s Pro Bowl kicker, Robbie Gould. Former Cleveland Brown QB, Charlie Frye, was the only Seattle QB to take snaps in the entire game, and he ended up throwing 3 interceptions. Luckily, rookie RB Justin Forsett had a big game (15 carries for 136 yards, 1 TD, 9.1 YPC), and Coutu’s leg helped save Frye in the end.
Sunday August 17 th, 2008
Chad Johnson for the remainder of the preseason. Johnson landed awkwardly on his shoulder after going for a Carson Palmer throw in the first quarter. Johnson may not be 100 percent come opening weekend, which is a big blow to this high-powered offense. They were already playing without Pro-Bowl WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Cincinnati’s Ryan Fitzpatrick, and Jeff Rowe attempted to make up for the early Palmer mistakes, but failed as Jon Kitna, and Drew Stanton each threw for a TD pass in Detroit’s win.
Tom Brady, who was back in Massachusetts nursing his latest injury, and it showed. New England turned the ball over 3 times throughout the 60 minute game, and the Bucs were even able to score a TD on defense. New England QB’s—Kevin O’Connell and Matt Cassel—combined to go 12 for 25 for 118 yards passing, and 1 INT. Tampa outgained the Pats 295-174, and won the game by 17 points.
Chad Johnson suffered a sprained shoulder in Cincy’s 27-10 loss to Detroit on Sunday. Johnson will sit out the remainder of the preseason.