This week’s college football slate was, on paper, supposed to involve instant classics and somewhat tightly contested games. That proved not to be the case as the higher-ranked teams dominated the lower- ranked teams, with exceptions in the Florida versus Kentucky game and Stanford versus Oregon game.
Starting with one of the two upsets of the week, the unranked Kentucky Wildcats beat the ninth-ranked Florida Gators. Although the Gators outgained them in the air and on the ground, the Wildcats had 115 penalty yards which contributed to their 7-point win.
Then, in the Oregon versus Stanford game, the No. 3 Oregon Ducks were narrowly beaten 31-24 in an overtime game that could’ve gone either way.
No. 1-ranked Alabama crushed the 11th-ranked Ole Miss Rebels behind a dominant run defense and superb rushing attack. Alabama’s running back rushed the ball 36 times, racking up 171 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns.
No. 2 Georgia showed why they have one of the best teams in the nation, dominating the No. 7 ranked Arkansas Razorbacks 37-0. Arguably the best defense in the nation shut out the Razorbacks and held them to a mere 162 total yards of offense.
The No. 6 Cincinnati versus No. 10 Notre Dame game had significant impacts on the rest of the season’s college football playoff. Cincinnati quarterback Desmond Ridder proved to be the difference-maker in the ballgame, throwing for 297 yards and 2 touchdowns. With Notre Dame not being in a conference, this drops their chances to make the playoffs and boosts Cincinnati’s case since they are in a weaker division.
In professional football, the NFL saw a week of upsets, broken records and bittersweet reunions. After both New York teams started 0-3, the Jets and the Giants were able to squeak by the Tennessee Titans and New Orleans Saints, respectively.
Jets rookie quarterback Zach Wilson was able to secure his first victory as a professional, while Giants quarterback Daniel Jones continued his season of impressive play by throwing for 402 yards for the first time in his career while adding 2 passing touchdowns and 27 rushing yards.
Another impressive upset was the Arizona Cardinals’ road victory against the Los Angeles Rams. Both teams came into the game undefeated and looked to take control of the NFC West.
Arizona and early-season MVP candidate Kyler Murray came out with poise and aggression as they defeated the Rams 37-20. The Cardinal’s running backs had a day to remember as Chase Edmonds rushed for 120 yards while James Conner scored 2 touchdowns for his team. After four weeks, Arizona looks like a Super Bowl contender.
On NBC’s “Sunday Night Football,” Tom Brady returned to New England for the first time after leaving behind a two-decade-long dynasty to play for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brady was met with applause from Patriot fans and the organization played a video tribute to him on the jumbotron.
Regardless of the sentimentality, Brady and the Bucs came to play as they defeated New England 19-17. A completion to wide receiver Mike Evans in the first quarter was enough for Brady to pass quarterback Drew Brees for the most passing yards in NFL history.
The Buccaneers will continue their Super Bowl defense next week when they will take on the Miami Dolphins.
A version of this article appeared on p. X of the Oct. 7, 2021 print edition of the Daily Nexus.