Kansas City Chiefs

Reviewing former Oregon State QB Matt Moore's journey to the NFL

Reviewing former Oregon State QB Matt Moore's journey to the NFL

There are numerous Pro Beavs in the NFL, but quarterback Matt Moore will be the most important one in the coming weeks.

After Patrick Mahomes dislocated his kneecap during Thursday Night Football against the Denver Broncos, Moore thrust into action. He threw for 117 yards and a touchdown in relief of Mahomes to lead the Broncos to a 30-6 victory. 

Mahomes’ exact timetable for his return remains a mystery, but most believe it will only be a couple of weeks. In the meantime, Moore will start in his first NFL game since the 2017 season. 

Let’s review how he got here:

College

Moore began his college career at UCLA playing sparingly before transferring to a junior college. After a season in JUCO, he commited to play at Oregon State, where he’d see immense success, highlighted by a 10-win season and a victory over No. 3 USC. 

Carolina Panthers

Following his senior season, Moore declared for the 2007 NFL Draft, where he was not selected. He was courted by the Dallas Cowboys and Carolina Panthers, but chose to play for the Cowboys since they only had two quarterbacks. The Cowboys later cut Moore with hopes of adding him to the team's practice squad, but the Panthers claimed him off waivers.

In Carolina, Moore began as the third-string quarterback but after injuries to Jake Delhomme and David Carr, Moore got an opportunity to play. His first completion was a 43-yard pass to Keary Colbert. On Dec. 16, 2007, Moore started his first game as a Panther against the Seattle Seahawks throwing for 208 yards in the win. Moore would finish out the season as the Panthers starting quarterback going 2-1. 

Moore missed the 2008 season after breaking his fibula in the Panthers preseason finale. In 2009, he played sparingly, before starting the last five games and winning the starting job for the 2010 season. The Panthers later spent a second-round pick on quarterback Jimmy Clausen (Notre Dame) and the two players would trade off starting quarterback duties before a shoulder ended Moore's season in Week 9. 

Miami Dolphins

Moore would spend the next seven seasons playing for the Miami Dolphins, primarily as backup quarterback. He started some games in relief of the starter, but never solidified the starting gig for good. 

His most notable action came during the 2016 season when Ryan Tannehill suffered a sprained MCL and ACL. Moore would replace Tannehill following the injury and lead a game-winning drive against the Arizona Cardinals. He would finish out the season as the starter since Tannehill never recovered in time. Moore’s season would end after losing the lone playoff start of his career 30-12 in Pittsburgh during the Wild Card round. 

Moore would play one more season for Miami before spending the 2018 season away from football.

Kansas City Chiefs

Following an injury to backup quarterback Chad Henne, the Chiefs signed Matt Moore to backup Patrick Mahomes. Now after Mahomes’ injury, Moore will once again be starting in the NFL. 

MORE ON THE BEAVERS:

Beavers defense has a dominating performance

Beavers react to their win, Luton credits their "fight"

Social media reacts to the Beavers' win over Cal

Oregon State fan favorite Matt Moore steps up big for Kansas City Chiefs

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Oregon State fan favorite Matt Moore steps up big for Kansas City Chiefs


The Chiefs were dealt a tough blow on Thursday night when reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes left the game due to injury. 

With 10 minutes left in the second quarter, Mahomes attempted a quarterback sneak for a first down. The Chiefs converted but lost Mahomes in the process. In the pile of bodies, Mahomes got his leg twisted up under him and the result was a dislocated knee cap.

With the Chiefs up 10-6, in trotted former Oregon State Beavers quarterback Matt Moore.

Moore had attempted just one pass all season, but now had to lead to Chiefs to victory on the road - he did just that. 

Moore went 10-19 on the night for 117 yards and touchdown, and in doing so helped the Chiefs snap a two-game losing streak. 

Social media, especially Beavers fans, loved seeing Moore get the job done:

After the game, it was reported that Mahomes will likely be out for three weeks, if not more. So now the Chiefs will turn to Moore again. 

In the span of two months, Moore has gone from semi-retired free agent, to the back-up for the MVP, to starter for the Kansas City Chiefs. That's quite the jump for Moore who has not started an NFL game since Week 11 against the Patriots in 2017, and did not play at all in 2018. 

Over his 12-year career, Moore has played in 51 games, starting 30 of them, and has passed for 7,055 yards and 46 touchdowns. 

[WATCH MOORE'S POSTGAME INTERVIEW HERE]

Moore was one of the top-rated quarterbacks coming out of high school in 2002 and eventually chose to attend UCLA. He spent two seasons with the Bruins before leaving the program. He enrolled at Oregon State in 2005 and spent his final two years of college football as the Beavers starting quarterback. 

In 2006 he led the Beavers to a 10-4 record and a victory over Missouri in the Sun Bowl. In his two seasons at OSU, Moore passed for 5,733 yards and 29 touchdowns.

But the Moore-Oregon State connection doesn't stop there. Prior to the 2018 season his younger brother Nick Moore, also a quarterback, transferred from Eastern Washington and joined the Beavers. Moore, a redshirt sophomore, has yet to play for Oregon State. 

 

BREAKING: Seahawks DE Frank Clark traded to Kansas City

BREAKING: Seahawks DE Frank Clark traded to Kansas City

Frank Clark gets his long-term deal. 

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, the Seattle Seahawks have reportedly traded Clark to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for a 2019 first-round pick, a 2020 second-round pick and an exchange of third round picks. 

Clark reached a five-year year deal worth $105.5 million with $63.5 million guaranteed, per Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network

Seattle will now have the 21st and 29th picks in the 2019 NFL Draft on Thursday, as well as second rounder for next year. 

Clark, who has spent the last four seasons with the Seahawks, is coming off his best year in Seattle. The soon-to-be 26-year-old defensive end recorded 13 sacks in 2018, starting 16 regular season games. He also had 41 tackles, three forced fumbles, two fumble recoverings and 10 tackles for loss last season. 

More analysis to come from our Seahawks Insider Aaron Fentress. 

Would you be surprised if the New England Patriots win in Kansas City on Sunday?

Would you be surprised if the New England Patriots win in Kansas City on Sunday?

Who do you take: rookie, MVP candidate Patrick Mahomes or arguably the G.O.A.T of the NFL, Tom Brady? Will the New England Patriots reign of terror on the AFC finally come to an end this Sunday in the AFC Championship game? Get your popcorn ready and claim your spot on the couch soon, because this will be a good one between the visiting Patriots at the Chiefs.

Only time will tell… Rob Parker of Fox Sports 1 joins the Brian Noe Show to discuss the upcoming AFC Championship matchup between the Patriots and the Chiefs. 

“I would be very surprised because the Patriots have lost their last three AFC Championship games on the road,” says Parker. “They do not perform when they have go on the road and get it done…”

Kickoff time set for 3:40 PM (PT) at Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri. 

Rapid Reaction: Three quick takeaways from Seattle’s win over Kansas City

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Rapid Reaction: Three quick takeaways from Seattle’s win over Kansas City

While you were trying to avoid awkward Christmas conversations with family members you haven’t seen in four years, you may have snuck into another room to find the Kansas City Chiefs at the Seattle Seahawks on this brisk, December evening in CenturyLink Field. On full display under the Sunday Night Football lights, young gun-slinger and ketchup-loving Patrick Mahomes yet again made impossible throws while searching for that playoff home-field advantage. On the other side of the ball, Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks have been flirting with that NFC Wildcard spot for a few weeks now.

Something had to give. And it did in Seattle’s favor. Wilson, Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett came up huge in the final four minutes of the game with incredible catch after incredible catch to seal the deal.

The Seahawks (9-6) defeat the Chiefs (11-4) 38-31 and officially open their Christmas gift of an NFC playoff berth.

Here are some quick thoughts from our reporters on scene….

FINAL BOX SCORE: Chiefs 31, Seahawks 38

Aaron Fentress, NBCSNW Seahawks Insider: Seattle was more physical than Kansas City on both sides of the ball and did just enough to hold QB Patrick Mahomes II to under 300 yards passing for just the fifth time this year. The Chiefs’ inability to stop the run is going to prevent them from reaching the Super Bowl.

Aaron Fentress, NBCSNW Seahawks Insider: Seattle got by far its best win of the year and once again the Seahawks made it happen with the running game racking up 210 yards on the ground. That type of rushing attack is going to make the Seahawks dangerous in the playoffs. However, the spectacular play of wide receiver Doug Baldwin, especially in the fourth quarter, ultimately won this game for Seattle. 

Ashley Young, NBCSNW Football Coordinator: Last week at San Francisco, the Seahawks piled up the penalties like holding off on doing your laundry until you get to mom’s house for Christmas break. Or like when the first leaves fall after a 40 mph wind storm. It was bad. Sunday against the Chiefs was a different story: Seattle committed just three penalties for 20 yards. Much better. It is much easier to find a flow in football without shooting yourself in the foot with penalties. 

Next Up: In the final game of the regular season, the Seahawks (9-6) host the Arizona Cardinals (3-12) at 1:25 PM (PT) next Sunday at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Washington.

Kansas City Chiefs no-looking their way into the playoffs

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Kansas City Chiefs no-looking their way into the playoffs

When you think of a chess match in terms of NFL teams, Kansas City vs. Baltimore did not disappoint. Rookie quarterback vs. rookie quarterback.

Patrick Mahomes is breaking all the rules. Throwing late back across the field, holding the ball to losely in his hands while he is scrambling, no-look passes, but still proving he is scrapy and can build drives late in the fourth quarter when his team needs him most. 

Late in the fourth quarter, Mahomes and the Chiefs had a 4th & 9, down 24-17. Trying to build as much time as possible, Mahomes scrambled right and blades of grass before hitting the sideline white chalk, heaves a huge throw down the middle of the field right on target to speedy (and very much injured) Tyreek Hill, who battled through a leg injury late in this game. This set up a game-tying 24-24 touchdown with under a minute to go. 

Despite the Chiefs' defensive line coming up HUGE with a strip sack on Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson to set up a game-wining field goal that was missed right, overtime was more of Mahomes Time. 

Mahomes lead a 75-yard opening field-goal drive to go up 27-24 in overtime. In the end, it was more of the defense that stepped up for Mahomes and the Chiefs hanging onto the lead and clinching a playoff berth.

Next up the Chiefs (11-2) host the Los Angeles Chargers (9-3) on Thursday Night Football. 

 

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll reacts to Rams-Chiefs Monday Night shootout

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Seahawks coach Pete Carroll reacts to Rams-Chiefs Monday Night shootout

Like most of the football-loving world, Seattle coach Pete Carroll watched Monday Night's offensive explosion between Kansas City and the Los Angeles Rams with admiration for the back-and-forth contest that featured a seemingly endless amount of big plays. 

The Rams won 54-51 in the third highest scoring game in NFL history. 

“Some really good defensive coordinators on those staffs too, I want you to know that, that were coaching ball last night," Carroll told reporters Tuesday during his weekly press conference. "The offenses were just crazy – it was crazy. There was some huge defensive plays in that game, but there was so much offense and just so much explosion in all. It was as good a game as I can remember seeing. It reminds you like the old AFL games back in the day, it was just such a shootout. It was amazing.”

The NFL has seen a rise in scoring this season led by Kansas City (9-2), the Rams (10-1) and New Orleans (9-1). Some of that is because of the fleet of hot young quarterbacks in the league, led by Kansas City's Pat Mahomes II and the Rams' Jared Goff, along with elite veterans like Drew Brees of the Saints and Indianapolis' Andrew Luck, who is having a career resurgence after a shoulder injury sidelined him last season. Another reason is the seemingly endless number of rule changes over the years that have benefited the offense. This, of course is nothing new. The NFL has been sweeting the rules to benefit offenses for decades. 

“Yeah, I’ve said it before that it certainly has – this was the whole idea," Carroll said. "But I don’t think that’s the reason. I think it’s just ball continues to evolve in the throwing game, it continues to evolve, the level of the play of the quarterback position continues to evolve. Even when you look at Drew Brees, he’s maybe having his best year ever, you know, and he’s been playing for forever."

Indeed, offenses have evolved. More receivers are on the field more often and defensive backs can't touch them to make it more difficult to get open.

"The most difficult part for the defenses is there’s just no hands – you can’t grab anything at all," Carroll said. "That used to be somewhat allowed, but that’s a stricter part of it and you saw a lot of penalties last night just – illegal hand stuff, guys trying to stay with people. So that’s, that’s part of it.”

Carroll said there's no doubt the changes are designed to create a more wide-open game. 

"It’s trying to make the game as explosive and exciting as possible," Carroll said. "Offense really does that for a lot of people. Protecting players too there has been a factor as well. It’s all fine, you know, it’s just the way it is. It’s relative and we’re coached and officiated the same, so it doesn’t matter.”

So where does Seattle fit in all of this? The Seahawks have an elite quarterback who has at times been known to light up the scoreboard as he did in the second half of the 2015 season when over seven games he threw 24 touchdown passes with just one interception. However, Seattle is all about running the football - the Seahawks lead the NFL in rushing - and playing defense. That strategy almost resulted in upset wins over the Rams, who won 33-31 at Seattle and 31-25 at home against the Seahawks. 

Seattle hosts Kansas City on Dec. 23. 

"I don’t mind being different at all," Carroll, who ran a traditional pro-style offense in college at USC, as well. "I didn’t mind it when we were in college either. We weren’t spreading out and doing all the stuff that other people were doing. We were running a pretty balanced attack back in the day and ran for a lot of yards (with) a lot of big time running backs. I think it’s a great way to play."

Kansas City WR De'Anthony Thomas placed on injured reserve

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Kansas City WR De'Anthony Thomas placed on injured reserve

Kansas City wide receiver De'Anthony Thomas was placed on injured reserve over the weekend and is out for the season with a leg injury. 

Thomas was reportedly stepped on during last Thursday's practice, fracturing his leg in the same place where he fractured his leg at the end of the 2017 season. 

Thomas, drafted by Kansas City in 2014, has three receptions for 29 yards and a touchdown this season, but made several big plays on special teams, including a 48-yard punt return, a fumble recovery and forced a fumble.

 

Injury news for De'Anthony Thomas, undefeated Chiefs

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Injury news for De'Anthony Thomas, undefeated Chiefs

Former Oregon Ducks and now Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver De’Anthony Thomas is reported to have fractured his leg during practice on Thursday.

According to Chiefs’ Vice President of Sports Medicine and Performance Rick Burkholder, Thomas “first fractured this leg during a game back on Dec. 31st, 2017. He had emergency surgery in Denver and had a rod put in his leg. That rod is still in his leg. Yesterday at practice, he had what we all consider a freak accident where he got stepped on from behind and refracturued his leg.”

Burkholder continues, “All indications right now are that he won’t need anything done with the rod, he won’t need surgery, and he’ll heal up on his own, but he’ll need some time to heal up.”

You can watch the full press conference HERE

Thomas’ timetable for return is still up in the air.

Thomas has spent most of his skills with the special teams unit, but has also been utilized for his speed at wide receiver with Kansas City.

The Chiefs (5-0) travel to face Tom Brady and the New England Patriots (3-2) this week in Foxborough.

NFL Week 2 Power Rankings: Kansas City on the rise

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NFL Week 2 Power Rankings: Kansas City on the rise

Typical NFL.

Just when you believe one thing to be true, it turns out to be a lie. How else does one explain Pittsburgh escaping Cleveland with a tie, Tampa Bay scoring 48 points at New Orleans with Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback and 33-year-old Adrian Peterson rushing for 96 yards and a touchdown for Washington?

Gotta love it. 

One of the biggest takeaways from the weekend, however, was the play of Kansas City with second-year quarterback Pat Mahomes II running the show. He displayed his rocket arm by tossing four touchdowns in a 38-28 win. We will see what he does this week at Pittsburgh. But at least for one week, Kansas City appeared wise to trade Alex Smith to Washington and allow the Mahomes era to get underway. 

Now for the Week 2 rankings with a little help from some emojis: 

 

1. LOS ANGELES RAMS

 

Previous ranking: 1.

Last week: Won 33-13 at No. 25 Oakland. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😎. Strong start for the Rams. 

This week: Vs. No. 31 Arizona (0-1). 

Betting line: Rams minus 10. 

Fentress says: The Rams started slowly at the Raiders but took advantage of a very mediocre Oakland  QB, Derek Carr, who threw three interceptions, one taken to the house by CB Marcus Peters. QB Jared Goff threw two touchdown passes and RB Todd Gurley rushed for 108. Good start on the road for my Super Bowl pick. 

 

2. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

Previous ranking: 3.

Last week: Won 27-20 at home against No. 18 Houston.   

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 👨. Old man Tom Brady just won't quit. 

This week: At No. 5 Jacksonville (1-0). Rematch of last season's AFC Championship game. 

Betting line: Patriots minus 2. 

Fentress says: We might just witnessed the emergence of WR Phillip Dorsett, son of HOF RB Tony Dorsett. The ultra fast Dorsett caught seven passes for 66 yards and a touchdown. He had 12 receptions all of last season. 

 

3. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

Previous ranking: 4.

Last week: Won 18-12 at home over No. 8 Atlanta. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🏆. The Eagles let their banner and trophy fly. 

This week: At No. 19 Tampa Bay (1-0).  

Betting line: Eagles minus 3.  

Fentress says: I'm still of the mind that quarterback Nick Foles' performance in the Super Bowl was more happenstance than a sign that he could become a franchise quarterback. Thursday's win over Atlanta helped confirm that theory. The Eagles need Carson Wentz back in a hurry. Give the defense props for repeatedly shutting down Atlanta in the red zone. 


 

4. MINNESOTA VIKINGS

 

Previous ranking: 6. 

Last week: Won 24-16 at home against No. 21 San Francisco. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 💪. Defense looked as strong as ever. 

This week: At No. 7 Green Bay (1-0) 

Betting line: Packers -3. 

Fentress says: The Vikings' defense picked up there it left of last season against the 49ers. QB Kirk Cousins looked solid. 

 

 5. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

 

Previous ranking: 7.

Last week: Won 20-15 at the No. 22 New York Giants. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😐. Nice win, but this team wants the Patriots. 

This week: At No. 2 New England (1-0). 

Betting line: Patriots minus 2. 

Fentress says: Jacksonville won an ugly game at the New York Giants with defense and QB Blake Bortles playing within himself. They will nee more than that to win at the Patriots but must be quite motivated to do so after what happened last season.  

 

 6. CAROLINA PANTHERS

Previous ranking: 8.

Last week: Won 16-8 over No. 16 Dallas. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🙁. The team won, but looked very lethargic on offense. 

This week: At No. 9 Atlanta (0-1).   

Betting line: Falcons minus 5. 

Fentress says: Carolina's defense did a number on Dallas, holding the Cowboys to 232 total yards.  But Carolina's offense was also very ordinary and tight end Greg Olsen left the game injured.  

 

 7. GREEN BAY PACKERS 

Previous ranking: 10.

Last week: Won 24-23 over No. 15 Chicago.

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😌. GB had to be quite relieved to steal that game from the Bears. 

This week: Vs. No. 4 Minnesota (1-0).

Betting line: Packers minus 2 1/2.

Fentress says: QB Aaron Rodgers put together a very impressive come back against Chicago at home after briefly leaving the game with a knee injury.  Minnesota, with that defense, is a different animal. Rodgers said he will play at Minnesota despite knee swelling and pain. 

 

8. KANSAS CITY

Previous ranking: 13. 

Last week: Won 38-28 at No. 12 Los Angeles Chargers. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🤗. KC fans are beaming about QB Pat Mahomes II. 

This week: At No. 11 Pittsburgh (0-0-1).

Betting line: Steelers minus 5 1/2.

Fentress says: Mahomes went off on the Chargers with four touchdown pass. What does that mean? Is he a future great, or was that just one of those nights when everything went right? We will know more after he and KC visit Pittsburgh. Or, will we? The Steelers almost lost to Cleveland. 

 

 9. ATLANTA FALCONS

Previous ranking: 9.

Last week: Lost 18-12 at No. 4 Philadelphia. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😩. Losing at the Eagles the exact same way that they did in the playoffs has to be painful. 

This week: Vs. No. 6 Carolina (1-0).  

Betting line: Falcons minus 5. 

Fentress says: It was absolutely amazing to watch quarterback Matt Ryan and the Falcons demonstrate that they learned absolutely nothing from last season's playoff loss at Philadelphia and proceeded to lose virtually the exact same way. The good news is that Ryan got wide receiver Julio Jones 10 receptions. The bad news is that their red zone woes continue. 

 

 10. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

 

Previous ranking: 2.

Last week: Lost 48-40 at home to No. 31 Tampa Bay. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😫. The defense got worn out by Tampa Bay, of all teams. 

This week: Vs. No. 30 Cleveland (0-1) 

Betting line: Saints minus 8 1/2.

Fentress says: The Saints defense showed improvement last year and then came out and gave up 48 points to Tampa Bay led by QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. Really?  

 

 11. PITTSBURGH STEELERS

 

Previous ranking: 5.

Last week: Tied 21-21 at No. 32 Cleveland. 

Record: 0-0-1.

Defining Emoji: ☹️ . It was Cleveland. Cleveland. ☹️

This week: Vs. No. 8 Kansas City (1-0).

Betting line: Steelers minus 5 1/2.

Fentress says: Let's forget about the fact that the Steelers almost lost to the Browns and focus on running back James Connor, who battled back from cancer, to rush for 135 yards and three touchdowns on 35 carries in place of holdout Le'veon Bell.

 

 12. BALTIMORE RAVENS

 

Previous ranking: 14. 

Last week: Won 47-3 at home over No. 29 Buffalo. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🕵️. Do we detect a Ravens team on the rise?

This week: At No. 15 Cincinnati (1-0), Thursday night.

Betting line: Ravens minus 3. 

Fentress says: The Ravens destroyed Buffalo, looking strong on defense while getting a good game from QB Joe Flacco

 

13. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS

Previous ranking: 12. 

Last week: Lost 38-28 to No. 13 Kansas City.  

Record: 0-1. 

Defining Emoji: 😒. Same 'ol Chargers. Teases. 

This week: At No. 32 Buffalo (0-1). 

Betting line: Charges minus 8. 

Fentress says: Sunday's loss was so typical Chargers. QB Philip Rivers threw for 424 yards and three touchdowns but the team couldn't stop a young Mahomes and a crucial fumble on a punt return in the fourth quarter killed.

 

 14. CHICAGO BEARS

 

Previous ranking: 15. 

Last week: Lost 24-23 at No. 10 Green Bay. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😧. That loss one will hurt for a long time. 

This week: Vs. No. 20 Seattle (0-1). 

Betting line: Bears minus 4. 

Fentress says: OLB Khalil Mack lived up to the hype with a pick-six, sack and forced fumble. But, in the end, the Packers are still the Packers and the Bears remain the Bears. Allowing QB Aaron Rodgers to win the fourth quarter 21-0 to steal that game will haunt Chicago for some time. 

 

 15. CINCINNATI BENGALS

 

Previous ranking: 17. 

Last week: Won 34-23 at No. 23 Indianapolis.  

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😺. This very happy Bengals team has loads of potential. 

This week:  Vs. No. 12 Baltimore (1-0), Thursday night. 

Betting line: Ravens minus 3. 

Fentress says: The Bengals overcame adversity on the road to win. That's a good sign for a team that has lacked character in the past. 

 

 16. HOUSTON TEXANS

 

Previous ranking: 18. 

Last week: Lost 27-20 at No. 3 New England.  

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😐. Losing a close game at New England is somewhat of a positive. 

This week: At No. 22 Tennessee (0-1). 

Betting line: No line. 

Fentress says: There were more positives than negatives in this one. QB DeShaun Watson didn't play particularly well but the Texans battled back from an early deficit to make a game out of it. 

 

 17. DALLAS COWBOYS

 

Previous ranking: 16.

Last week: Lost 16-8 at No. 8 Carolina. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😮. WR Dez Bryant called out Dallas on Twitter after that showing on offense. 

This week: Vs. No. 25 New York Giants (0-1).   

Betting line: Cowboys minus 3. 

Fentress says: The Cowboys' offensive looked pitiful with Dak Prescott attempting to throw to wide receivers Allen Huns and Deonte Thompson. RB Ezekiel Elliott will routinely get bottled up if Prescott can't make some plays. Dallas gained just 232 yards in the game. l

 

 18. DENVER BRONCOS

Previous ranking: 24. 

Last week: Won 27-24 at home over No. 19 Seattle. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🚅. LB Von Miller moves around the edge like a high-speed train. 

This week: Vs. No. 28 Oakland (0-1). 

Betting line: Broncos minus 4. 

Fentress says: Denver got a nice win over a decent Seattle team and QB Case Keenum proved to be quite good in the win despite three interceptions thrown. Undrafted rookie free agent running back Phillip Lindsay is a perfect compliment to Royce Freeman.

 

 19. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

 

Previous ranking: 31.

Last week: Won 48-40 at No. 2 New Orleans.  

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 🏴‍☠️. They came, they saw, the pillaged. 

This week: Vs. No. 3 Philadelphia (1-0). 

Betting line: Eagles minus 3. 

Fentress says: Quarterback Jameis Winston might not have a job when he returns from suspension in three weeks. Ryan Fitzpatrick thew for 417 yards and four touchdowns against the Saints to help the Bucs put up the most points in an opener in the Super Bowl era. Wow! 

 

 20. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS

 

Previous ranking: 19.

Last week: Lost 27-24 at No. 24 Denver.  

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😕. More of the same for the Seahawks. 

This week: At No. 14 Chicago (1-0). 

Betting line: Bears minus 4.

Fentress says: Seattle couldn't run the ball and QB Russell Wilson was sacked six times. Sounds like the 2017 Seahawks. But, there were some positives in a close loss. Seattle must figure out how to block Chicago's Khalil Mack better than it did Von Miller, who had three sack against Seattle. 

 

21 MIAMI DOLPHINS

 

Previous ranking: 27, 

Last week: Won 27-20 over No. 11 Tennessee. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😅. Smiling but tired after 7-hour game due to weather delays. 

This week: At No. 23 New York Jets (1-0). 

Betting line: Jets minus 1. 

Fentress says: RB Frank Gore, 35, gave the team 61 yards on nine carries. Not bad. QB Ryan Tannehill wasn't great, but two touchdown passes in his first game in two seasons was a good start. 

 

 22. TENNESSEE TITANS

Previous ranking: 11.

Last week: Lost 27-20 at No. 27 Miami. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 🤕. QB Marcus Mariota is banged up and and tight end Delanie Walker went on IR with a season-ending broken ankle with ligament damage. All bad. 

This week: Vs. No. 16 Houston (0-1). 

Betting line: No line. 

Fentress says: The Titans lost a very winnable game despite facing injuries and performing horribly. What's really scary for Tennessee is that not it faces a divisional opponent with Mariota's status in doubt and his best target on the shelf. 

 

23. NEW YORK JETS

 

Previous ranking: 30. 

Last week: Won 48-17 at No. 20 Detroit.  

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: ✈️ 💣🦁💥. Yep, the Jets dropped a bomb on the poor Lions. 

This week: Vs. No. 21 Miami (1-0). 

Betting line: Jets minus 1. 

Fentress says: Fourth-year coach Todd Bowles had his defense humming (four interceptions) and the offense looked at least solid with rookie quarterback Sam Darnold at the helm. Maybe the Jets' commitment to Bowles is about to pay off. 

 

 24. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

 

Previous ranking: 21. 

Last week: Lost 24-16 at No. 6 Minnesota. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 🤔. I thought QB Jimmy Garoppolo was the next superstar QB?

This week:  Vs. No. 29 Detroit (0-1).

Betting line: 49ers minus 3 1/2. 

Fentress says: Garoppolo is all the rage but he and the 49ers were brought back down to earth after Minnesota picked him off three times. . But we can't be too hard on them. Minnesota will do that to many QBs this season. The good news is the defensive ends, Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner both played well. 

 

 25. NEW YORK GIANTS

 

Previous ranking: 22. 

Last week: Lost 20-15 at home to the No. 7 Jaguars.

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😟. Saquon Barkley and Odell Beckham gets you 15 points? Well, it was the Jaguars' D. But still...

This week:  At No. 17 Dallas (0-1). 

Betting line: Cowboys minus 3. 

Fentress says: Rookie RB Saquon Barkley looked legit while racking up 106 rushing yards and a touchdown against the mighty Jagars' defense. I'd say that this was one of the most quality losses of the week. 

 

26. WASHINGTON

Previous ranking: 28. 

Last week: Won 24-6 at No. 26 Arizona. 

Record: 1-0.

Defining Emoji: 😬. Washington has to to be surprisingly pleased with RB Adrian Peterson. 

This week: Vs. No. 27 Colts (0-1). 

Betting line: Washington minus 5 1/2. 

Fentress says: QB Alex Smith looked solid. The defense dominated. But the real story for Washington was RB Adrian Peterson, who rushed for 96 yards and a touchdown. Smith needs a running game to be effective. But I can't buy Smith and Peterson leading this team into the playoffs. 

 

 27. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS

 

Previous ranking: 23.

Last week: Lost 34-23 at home to the No. 17 Bengals.  

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 👌. Colts lost but at least Andrew Luck played well. 

This week:  At No. 26 Washington (1-0). 

Betting line: Washington minus 5 1/2. 

Fentress says: Luck appeared to be fully back after throwing for 319 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. His new tight end, Eric Ebron looked good. But a suspect defense blew a lead against the Bengals. 

 

 28. OAKLAND RAIDERS

 

Previous ranking: 25. 

Last week: Lost 33-13 at home to the No. 1 Rams. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 💼. Coach Jon Gruden has a lot of work to do. 

This week: at No. 18 Denver (1-0). 

Betting line: Broncos minus 4. 

Fentress says: The Raiders need QB Derek Carr to be special and he simply isn't. Not yet and certainly not Monday night. Fixing Carr is up to Gruden, who must find a way to help Carr get the ball to WR Amari Cooper, who had just one reception for nine yards on Sunday. 

 

 29. DETROIT LIONS

 

Previous ranking: 20. 

Last week: Lost 48-17 at home to No. 30 New York Jets.  

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 🐱. That's a kitty, FYI. Not a lion. Get it?

This week: At No. 24 49ers (0-1). 

Betting line: 49ers minus 3 1/2. 

Fentress says: QB Matthew Stafford threw four interceptions against the Jets. Keep in mind that during the previous two seasons, Stafford never threw more than 13 interceptions in a given season. Once again the Lions' running game has issues. Just 39 yards on 15 carries against the Jets. 

 

 30. CLEVELAND BROWNS

 

Previous ranking: 32. 

Last week: Tied 21-21 with No. 5 Pittsburgh at home. 

Record: 0-0-1.

Defining Emoji: 😏. "Yeah, maybe we're not that bad, after all." - Browns fans. 

This week: At No. 10 New Orleans (0-1). 

Betting line: Saints minus 8 1/2. 

Fentress says: The Browns broke their 17-game losing streak without winning. That's an amazing trick. But I'll say this: If oft-troubled WR Josh Gordon, remains on the field, the Browns will certainly win a handful of games this season. 

 

 31. ARIZONA CARDINALS

Previous ranking: 26. 

Last week: Lost 24-6 at home to No. 28 Washington. 

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 🙄. Just put Josh Rosen out there and see what happens. Sheesh! 

This week: At No. 1 Rams (1-0).

Betting line: Rams minus 10. 

Fentress says: New coach Steven Wilks has his work cut out for him. But this team isn't this bad. Just 213 yards of offense? Really? There is enough offensive firepower to allow the Cardinals to play better next week. They will still lose, but they could play better. 

 

 

32. BUFFALO BILLS

 

Previous ranking: 29. 

Last week: Lost 47-3 at No. 14 Baltimore.    

Record: 0-1.

Defining Emoji: 🆘. Self explanatory. 

This week: Vs. No. 13 Los Angeles Chargers (0-1).  

Betting line: Charges minus 8. 

Fentress says: I felt guilty last week ranking a 2017 playoff team at No. 29. Then the Bills went out and got crushed by a decent, but not great Ravens team. Quarterback Nathan Peterman, who threw two interceptions, now has a career 25.7 passer rating. Just throw rookie QB Josh Allen out there and let whatever happens, happen.