Andy Dalton, Bengals show they belong among AFC elite; more Snaps

Monday October 28th, 2013

• Maybe it was a salute to the recently deceased Titans owner Bud Adams, but I doubt it. In Oakland's home win over Pittsburgh, Raiders defensive coordinator Jason Tarver was captured flipping the bird to the officials after a personal foul penalty on Oakland cornerback Mike Jenkins, and I'm sure the league will take note of his gesture and be in communication this week.

The always colorful Adams was fined a few years back by the league after flipping off some fans with a double-bird. Ex-Titans defensive coordinator Chuck Cecil earned a $40,000 fine from the NFL in 2010 for letting his temper get the best of him and flashing an illegal hand signal to the officials.

• The debate on whether the Raiders need to take a first-round quarterback next spring, or stick with the still-developing Terrelle Pryor, isn't likely to die down after Oakland's 21-18 win over the Steelers.

Pryor was spectacular with an NFL-record 93-yard touchdown run on the first snap of the game, but he failed to match that production all night in the passing game. He was just 10-of-19 throwing the ball, for a measly 87 yards, with two picks and a 25.4 passer rating.

How exactly did the Raiders win?

FARRAR: Pryor starts game with longest QB run in history

• It's a great sign that Denver showed the resiliency to score on five-of-six possessions after falling 14 points behind Washington in the third quarter of the Broncos' 45-21 win. But we knew Peyton Manning and Co. could light up the scoreboard.

The better development was probably linebacker Von Miller strip-sacking Washington's Robert Griffin III, with Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe recovering and setting up a field goal that put Denver up 10 points. Miller making an impact play in his second game back in the lineup is a boost the beleaguered Broncos defense needed.

• It's silly to get too caught up in the Giants' modest two-game winning streak, even if they do reside in the awful NFC East. But facts are stubborn things, and the reality is New York still has plenty to play for this season, even at 2-6 nearing the midseason. With Dallas leading the division at 4-4, a two-game deficit with eight games to play isn't overly daunting.

And let's not forget, the Giants defense that has been so ridiculed this season has now gone 10 quarters without allowing a touchdown. That's the longest streak in franchise history since 2005. New York also broke its eight-game road losing streak, beating an Eagles team that had largely dominated the Giants just three weeks ago at MetLife Stadium.

• What an embarrassment of riches the Saints passing game enjoys. Drew Brees threw five touchdown passes in New Orleans' 35-17 beatdown of the visiting Bills, and the only drama was which Saints receiver was more open?

Brees completed 26-of-34 passes for 332 yards, and I didn't even think he was at his sharpest. He found rookie receiver Kenny Stills for scoring bombs of 69 and 42 yards, mixed in a couple of touchdowns to all-world tight end Jimmy Graham (who played pretty well with a partially torn plantar fascia) and also fed a touchdown to returning receiver Lance Moore. All told, Brees connected with 10 Saints' receivers.

And to think New Orleans started sluggishly, and only had 64 yards of offense with roughly five minutes remaining in the first half against the Bills.

• The Jets may never win two in a row again. They've alternated wins and losses in all eight weeks of this season, and haven't put a winning streak of any kind together since Weeks 13-14 of last season, when they beat Arizona and won at Jacksonville.

• That looked like a walkthrough practice for the 49ers against the out-manned Jaguars in London. I'm sure Jim Harbaugh, taking a page from John McKay's best material, probably told his players to take postgame showers if they were needed. It is, after all, going to be a long flight home.

Maybe Jacksonville playing in London for four consecutive years will work after all. As one press box veteran noted Sunday, the Europeans used to love Jerry Lewis, so slapstick does tend to play well across the pond.

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