PATRICK MAHOMES (Kansas City – 323 yards, six TD)
Last week, the Andy Reid effect – and some Tyreek Hill magic – played a large role in Patrick Mahomes’ outstanding numbers but this week it was all the former Texas Tech gunner. His arm is a cannon and he exploded at Heinz Field, torching Pittsburgh’s defence for half a dozen TDs.
Reid is noted as a QB whisperer and now we’re seeing why the team was so happy to move on Alex Smith. This kid is brilliant, thus far.
BLAKE BORTLES (Jacksonville – 377 yards, four TD)
In last season’s AFC Championship game, Jacksonville had New England on the ropes but Bortles – and his coaches – could not quite close. There was to be no repeat when Brady and Belichick visited the Floridian heat. With a receiving corps as unknown as Brady’s, Blake B went HAM, dropping nearly 400 passing and rushing yards on the Pats as well as four game-winning touchdowns.
Leonard Fournette will return, this defence is lights out and Bortles is improving every week – big things happening in JAX.
RYAN FITZPATRICK (Tampa Bay – 402 yards, four TD)
Fair dinkum. Fitzpatrick is a back-to-back tenant of the Fab Five. He again put up 400+ yards and 4 TD which began with a 75-yard bomb to DeSean Jackson. Philadelphia are not quite where they were when they collected the Lombardi but Fitzy made them look second-rate. He’s leading the league in passing yards and has the Buccaneers out to a red-hot 2-0 start.
Should we see Fitzpatrick in this list again next week then we might need to start talking MVP…
MICHAEL DICKSON (Seattle – 7 punts, 45.1 average)
For a punter, Dickson’s numbers are nothing special – in fact they’re very average but the Australian has taken the NFL by storm. Against the Bears he implemented a drop-kick to restart the game from a scoring play, something ESPN’s commentators were amazed with. He also attempted an on-side kick by drilling a short drop-kick at a Bears receiver. Dickson is an outstanding punter but he’s bringing in revolutionary skills to the kicking game. Coach Pete Carroll loves innovation so you get the feeling he loves the Aussie rookie.
AJ GREEN, MEL GORDON, TODD GURLEY (Three TD each)
Rarely will the Footballing Fab Five become the Fab Eight but with quarterbacks dominating and many receivers, running backs and defenders having steady but not standout games, these three men deserved a place. All three nabbed a rare feat on an NFL gridiron – scoring a hat trick of touchdowns.
Gordon had 66 total yards, Gurley 73 and Green 69, hardly huge numbers for such explosive offensive talents but churning out nine TDs combined is pretty darn good.
Green posted his trio with 13 minutes remaining in Q2, Gordon had his (two receiving, one rushing) just before halftime and Gurley waited until Q2 before scoring twice and then again just after halftime. Had he not left the game with cramps, he may well have found another score such was the beat down the Rams were putting on Arizona.