In this Oct. 27, 2019, file photo, New York Jets head coach Adam Gase, right, talks to quarterback Sam Darnold (14) on the sideline prior to the start the first half of an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, in Jacksonville, Fla. The Jets are enduring a tough season under first-year coach Adam Gase and young quarterback Sam Darnold they hope will be the foundation of long-term success. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)
New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) drops back to pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Steven Ryan)
In this Nov. 3, 2019, file photo, Washington Redskins head coach Bill Callahan, left, talks with quarterback Dwayne Haskins before an NFL football game in Orchard Park, N.Y. The Redskins at the bye week of a lost season are a team without a definitive answer at quarterback, answers to questions on offense and defense and a visible organizational plan for the future. Callahan has repeatedly set the expectation at winning the next game and said hes receiving no direction from the front office on how to develop young players for the next few years. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus, File)
Washington Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins (7) hands the ball off to running back Adrian Peterson (26) during the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) When the New York Jets take the field on Sunday, the Washington Redskins could see a glimpse into their future.
It's not pretty, but it's progress.
The Jets are enduring a tough season under first-year coach Adam Gase and young quarterback Sam Darnold they hope will be the foundation of long-term success. It's a reasonable blueprint for the Redskins, who this week named first-rounder Dwayne Haskins their starting quarterback and could hand the coaching reins next season to someone with more say over personnel than the previous regime.
This meeting between New York (2-7) and Washington (1-8) is Haskins' first game as the full-time starter and a step toward following the Jets' lead.
''You drafted him as a high first-rounder, and you've got to figure out what he brings to the table,'' Redskins right tackle Morgan Moses said. ''We all know it's a business and obviously we have an interim head coach in (Bill) Callahan, and so, if he's going to be the head coach or whoever's going to be the next coach, you've got to figure out what this kid has.''
Unlike the Jets, who started Darnold immediately after drafting him third in 2018, the Redskins have been cautious about throwing Haskins in the deep end after selecting him 15th in April. Since-fired coach Jay Gruden and Callahan leaned on veteran Case Keenum instead.
Perhaps that's because Haskins, despite all his tools at his potential, didn't flash the same NFL-ready look as Darnold did coming out of college. Washington's coaching staff got an up-close look at Darnold during joint workouts at training camp in the summer of 2018, and he looked prepared to get the nod right away.
''I thought he was ahead of the game,'' Callahan said. ''I thought he was mature, he understood the game, he knew where to go with the ball, his decision-making was good and it's only getting better.''
Darnold still has plenty of growing pains. Before beating the Giants last week, he threw nine interceptions in his previous four starts. And Giants rookie QB Daniel Jones - taken nine spots ahead of Haskins at No. 6 - has eight interceptions to go along with 15 touchdowns since taking over as the starter in Week 3.
Haskins has four interceptions and no touchdowns in three appearances, including his first NFL start Nov. 3 at Buffalo, but that's part of the process the Redskins are now diving into.
''Mistakes, it's going to happen, especially when you're a young guy at the quarterback position,'' Washington running back Adrian Peterson said. ''You're going to make mistakes. Look at both guys in New York. They have had a lot of mistakes - way more mistakes than our young guy. The way that you keep that respect with the veteran guys is coming out, being on point and executing your stuff. That's what he's been doing. We're going to continue to ride with him.''
GASE IN PLACE
Jets chairman and CEO Christopher Johnson gave Gase a vote of confidence earlier in the week, saying he'll remain coach not only through this season but for next season, too.
Gase was hired last January after three seasons in Miami and has a career regular-season record of 25-32 as a head coach.
Johnson cited the various injuries to key players this season, including 14 starters who have missed a total of 53 games, as a major reason for the struggles. He also insisted he believes in Gase being the right coach to help Darnold progress, and stability is a key for a young quarterback.
''It's absolutely important, but that's not why I'm keeping Adam, but it's certainly a component,'' Johnson said. ''Changing systems year after year is just a disaster, for a young quarterback, especially.''
The Redskins aren't just getting a look at their QB of the future but also the guy they hope is their running back for years to come. Second-year back Derrius Guice is set to play for the first time since injuring his right knee Week 1 and will make his home debut after missing all of 2018 with a torn ACL in his left knee.
''It's great to have him back,'' Callahan said. ''I know he's itching to get back on the field and work and play. He's worked well the last two weeks and you can see his maturity and his maturation process only get better. I think the rehabilitation process takes you through that, puts you inward a little bit mentally and really take inventory about where you're at and how important the game is so that when those opportunities come back up again you take full advantage of those.''
Jets safety Jamal Adams had the best game of his young career last week against the Giants, a performance that earned him AFC defensive player of the week honors.
Adams had a team-leading nine tackles, two sacks, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery that he returned 25 yards for a touchdown after he ripped the ball out of Giants quarterback Daniel Jones' hands.
Adams, who made the Pro Bowl last year in his second season, joins Donnie Abraham (2004), Erik McMillan (1989) and Darrol Ray (1980) as the only Jets players to return a fumble and an interception for a TD in the same season. Adams had a 61-yard INT return at New England on Sept. 22.
''He may talk a lot,'' linebacker Jordan Jenkins said with a smile, ''but if he keeps doing that, I can deal with it.''
The Jets have been stingy in run defense this season, holding opponents to 3.01 yards per carry - the lowest mark in the NFL. That's after the Giants' Saquon Barkley managed just 1 yard on 13 carries last Sunday, the worst game of his career.
New York also leads the league with 69 tackles for no gain or negative yards, according to Radar360. The next closest team is Tampa Bay with 53.
''That's what we do best: stop the run,'' nose tackle Steve McLendon said. ''It doesn't stop there. The work never stops. Like I always say, the gym is always open, so you (have) to keep working.''
Seattle Seahawks kicker Jason Myers missed his first kick in four weeks when he missed an extra point in Seattle's Sunday night loss to the Rams. Myers' missed kick came after a pick-six by Quandre Diggs, and while it hurts to see any missed chances at points, Seattle's offense was so pitiful that the miss proved inconsequential. Myers has been money since his meltdown against the Bucs, and hopefully this will just be a minor blip. He did drill both field goals he attempted in the game, so maybe that'll help keep his confidence up and keep him focused.
Seattle Seahawks free safety Quandre Diggs continued to turn fans into believers by snagging a pair of interceptions, including a pick-six, in Seattle's loss to the Rams. Both of Diggs' interceptions came on back-to-back possessions, and he now has three interceptions, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery in just four games. The Seahawks Defense certainly wasn't at its best on Sunday night, but with the offense doing it zero favors, it put up a pretty strong performance. Also of note, one-handed feel-good story Shaquem Griffin continues to be a revelation since he moved into a more pass-rushing role. He's given a huge boost to Seattle's pass rush as of late.
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver D.K. Metcalf was targeted six times on Sunday night, and he hauled in all six passes. That's the first time in his career that he's caught every pass thrown his way, and it further accentuates the growth he's had as a receiver this season. Unfortunately, Seattle lost the game and Metcalf was held without a touchdown, but improved catching is a wonderful bit of growth for the rookie. Metcalf now sits at 783 yards receiving on 50 catches, and he's been able to score five touchdowns. For a guy who was thought to just be a workout warrior, it's been quite the impressive rookie campaign.
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett caught four passes for 43 yards on Sunday night against the Rams, but he's clearly still hampered by the combination of the serious shin contusion and flu. Lockett seemed to struggle to get open on critical downs, and Russell Wilson was forced to turn to less dependable options for some throws. Lockett's connection with Wilson is famous, so it's logical to conclude that the injury/illness are still affecting his play. It's unclear if the coaching staff will address it in any way or continue to run him out there, but the Seahawks will need him completely healthy if their offense is resume the high-flying act it was at the start of the year.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson had a rough night on Sunday when he was one of many players on the team who struggled. Wilson took five sacks and failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time this season. The shellacking by the Rams came to a head on third downs when it felt like Wilson was bombarded by defensive lineman from the moment the ball was snapped. With Seattle moving to 10-3, the team will be trying to bounce back and officially punch their ticket to the playoffs when they face the Carolina Panthers next week. Hopefully, they can have more energy and focus in Charlotte than they had in LA.
Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson was able to rack up 91 scrimmage yards on Sunday night, but like the rest of the Seattle offense, he was unable to find the end zone. Carson was forced to pick up the slack after backfield-mate Rashaad Penny went down with a significant knee injury early in the first quarter, but offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer seemed uninterested in leaning on Seattle's run game. Carson only carried the ball 15 times, his second-fewest times in the last 10 games, even though he was averaging more than five yards per carry. Hopefully, the team will get back to giving him the rock next week when they head to Carolina.
Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny looks to be lost for the season after suffering a knee injury in Sunday night's loss to the Rams. Head coach Pete Carroll told the media that Penny sprained his ACL at the end of his first play of the night, and while the team doesn't know how serious it is just yet, Carroll ominously described it as "significant." Penny had just started to live up to his billing, stepping up huge in two straight games, but this injury will be yet another setback for the young running back. With Seattle almost guaranteed a playoff spot, perhaps there's a chance the youngster could come back for some postseason football, but it depends on what the team finds out in the next few days.
Los Angeles Chargers fullback Derek Watt is easily the least-known member of the trio of NFL brothers, but he got on the board on Sunday when he hauled in a one-yard touchdown against Jacksonville. Watt is one of a number of bruising fullbacks that have appeared in the league in the last couple years as the position has undergone a resurgence, but this was his first time being the man to haul the rock over the goal line. Watt them followed it up with a solid end zone celebration of a dog being let off its leash, and it's a sure thing that he had many a celebratory phone call with the family after the game.
Los Angeles Chargers kicker Michael Badgley knocked through the only field goal try he had all day, but it turned out that it wasn't much needed. The Chargers walloped the Jaguars for 45 points, topping their last two performances combined, and Badgley found himself drilling extra points all day instead of field goals. Badgley knocked six extra points through without incident, and his 40-yarder was no sweat either. Badgley has now made seven of his last eight kicks from within 50 yards, and he hasn't missed an extra point all season. He's not going for any records, but he's still been one of the best kickers in Chargers recent history.
Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa hadn't recorded a sack in over a month coming into Sunday, but he took care of that problem. Bosa dropped Gardner Minshew twice in his team's throttling of the Jags, and he also did a beautiful job of holding running back Leonard Fournette behind the line of scrimmage by his ankle on what could have been a big gainer. Bosa was a wrecking crew up front, regularly ending up around the ball, and the Chargers Defense dominated the Jaguars. They only allowed 10 points, and their offense took care of the rest. It was the smallest point total they held an opponent to since Week 4.
Los Angeles Chargers tight end Hunter Henry was one of a host of players to catch touchdowns against the Jaguars on Sunday, and his was the easiest of the bunch. For some reason, Jacksonville completely lost track of Henry late in the second quarter, and he caught a pass from Philip Rivers where he was so wide open that no defenders were even on the screen on the broadcast. A couple small secondary members met him just before he reached the goal line, but Henry easily ran through the tiny would-be tacklers. The touchdown was Henry's fourth of the season, and he continues to be a very productive member of the offense when healthy.
Los Angeles Chargers tight end Virgil Green got in on the action in the team's steamroll of the Jacksonville defense on Sunday. Green got the honor of putting the final nail in the coffin when he caught a wide-open touchdown pass from Tyrod Taylor early in the fourth quarter. It was Green's first regular season touchdown catch since the first week of October in 2018, though Green did haul one in during the team's playoff game against the Patriots last year. Green is much more well known for his blocking prowess, so this TD was a surprise gift to the ninth-year pro.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen caught five of his passes sent his way on Sunday, tallying up 83 yards in the team's massive win over the Jaguars. Allen snagged a quick pass over the middle and led defenders on a long foot race to rack up a 45-yard gainer at one point. His 83 yards was the most receiving yards he's recorded in a game in over two months, and while he was held out of the end zone once again, it was good just to see him break free on a couple of routes. The 45-yarder was also Allen's longest single catch this season. He'll have a tougher matchup next week when he faces the stout Vikings Defense, but he's only been held to less than five catches once in his last six games. He should find a way to get his.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams didn't see a lot of chances on Sunday, but he fought to make his couple of opportunities count. With the team already up by 21 points late in the third quarter, Williams' number got pulled when Philip Rivers lofted a deep ball to the end zone on a long third down. Williams snatched at the ball and tumbled to the ground with both arms securely hanging on to it. Only problem was that the Jacksonville defender had both his arms around it too. The officials ruled that the catch was good, and Williams had officially broken his touchdown drought with his first of the season. Williams' only complication is the assortment of weapons available to Rivers on his offense. Otherwise, Williams is everything a team could want in a star receiver.
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Tyrod Taylor saw his first extended action on Sunday night as he was called upon to close out the thrashing the Chargers were delivering in Jacksonville. Taylor took full advantage, tossing his first touchdown of the year to tight end Virgil Green. Taylor completed three of five passes in his quarter of play, and he looked comfortable and relaxed in the pocket. Taylor has been in the news recently as a possible insert if Philip Rivers were to be benched for poor play, but Rivers has turned it around just in time. That said, Rivers is scheduled to be a free agent at the end of this season, so there's an outside chance Taylor could find himself in a starting role next year.
Los Angeles Chargers running back Austin Ekeler stole the show in Jacksonville as he single-handedly routed the Jaguars Defense. Ekeler finished the night with 101 yards rushing on just eight carries and 112 yards receiving on four catches. He's the first player this season to rack up 100+ yards in both disciplines in the same game, and he made highlight reels across the country by gashing through the defense on every opportunity. His money moment came when he caught a pass at his own 14-yard line, two yards behind the line of scrimmage, and didn't stop running until he reached the opposite end zone, completely untouched along the way. Ekeler's playmaking ability is unmatched, even if he isn't officially the starter.
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers celebrated his 38th birthday with some flair as he demolished the Jaguars. Rivers set a new personal best with an 84-yard touchdown pass (86 yards of which was provided by Austin Ekeler), and he finished with 314 yards on just 16 completed passes. Rivers has had more than his fair share of rocky performances this year, but he's also completed more than 65% of his passes and is on pace to have the third-most prolific season of his career, yards-wise. Rivers isn't a superstar anymore, but he's still not quite ready for the trash heap.
Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon wasn't the talk of the town after Sunday's game against the Jaguars, but he was still productive for fantasy owners. Gordon only touched the ball 17 times in the team's rout of Jacksonville, but it was enough to get him a touchdown. He combined for 84 total scrimmage yards, and he averaged more than 4.6 yards per carry on the ground. It wasn't a whole lot compared to Austin Ekeler's ridiculous performance as his counterpart, but Gordon still held up his end of the bargain. Expect a tougher time next week against Minnesota, but Gordon should still be one the key players in the game.
San Francisco 49ers kicker Robbie Gould knocked in two field goals and six extra points in Week 14 against the New Orleans Saints. The Niners offense was on fire with 48 points on Sunday and Gould benefited, punching in all his opportunities. Gould played the hero in the waning seconds with a walk-off 30-yard field goal to clinch the victory for the road Niners. Back from his lengthy quadriceps injury, Gould is a fine kicking option down the fantasy stretch.