NFL Week 6: Over & Under Reactions

By Steve Moyse

Week 6 was a week of ‘lasts’ in the NFL. The last NFL UK game of 2023, the last week in which an undefeated team takes the field and the last time anyone doubts the healing powers of dolphins – thank you Aaron Rodgers.

Before the Eagles and 49ers can redeem themselves in Week 7, let’s break down this week’s over and under-reactions.

Overreaction: Brock Purdy can’t do it without McCaffrey and Samuel

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To start 2023, Brock Purdy continued to prove why the ‘Mr Irrelevant’ nickname really doesn’t suit him.

Through the first 5 weeks, he had an average passer rating of just under 120 and hadn’t thrown a single interception, all while leading the 49ers to a dominant 5-0 start – he was practically unstoppable.

That was until Week 6.

After losing superstar playmakers Christian McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel to injury, with All-Pro LT Trent Williams battling through an injury of his own, Purdy had his worst performance to date as the 49ers lost 19-17 to the Cleveland Browns.

The internet immediately blew up; “Purdy can’t do it without elite talent around him”, “he collapsed when the team needed him”, “he’s nothing more than a system QB” etc.

But let’s breathe for a second.

No matter who you are, if Myles Garrett is in your face on every single play and your safety valves are suddenly taken away, you’re going to struggle. There’s no game plan or adjustment that prepares you for that level of adversity and yet Purdy still would have secured the win, if not for a muffed Game-winning FG.

So before we overreact, let’s see how Purdy plays going forward, should McCaffrey and Samuel be forced to miss time.

Overreaction: Josh Allen will lead the Bills to Super Bowl Glory

Josh Allen’s ability to make something out of nothing, be it on the ground or through the air, is something that only a handful of QB’s have ever been able to do. Pair that with a supporting cast of; Stefon Diggs, Gabe Davis and James Cook and, on paper, you have a team that’s Super Bowl ready.

However, there’s a big difference between being Super Bowl ready ‘on paper’ and in reality.

While Allen’s somewhat unpredictable playing style has an undeniable impact on the Bills’ weekly performance, it does make building a game-plan considerably more difficult.

Now, against the weaker Defenses this hasn’t been an issue – he even put up a perfect passer rating (158.3) against the Dolphins. But against the better Defenses, Allen comes undone incredibly quickly – turning the ball over 6 times in just 3 games against the Jets, Commanders and Giants.

What’s more, Allen’s style has a habit of getting him injured. It did last season, massively effecting his performance, and it has this season – sending him to the Blue Medical Tent against the Giants.

With injuries across the roster and a number of tough Defenses still to play, Allen will need to find a balance between reliability and improvisation, if he hopes to make his first Super Bowl appearance.

Under-reaction: Jared Goff's MVP-level play

Rams’ QB Jared Goff and Lions’ QB Jared Goff feel like two completely different players. Yet many seem incapable of separating the two and seeing Goff’s performance in 2023 for what it really is – MVP calibre.

Through 6 weeks, Jared Goff has over 1600 yards for 11 TD’s and only 3 Interceptions, with an average passer rating of 105.1.

To put that into context, this season Goff is better than Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts in all 4 categories and better than Josh Allen in 3 of 4. In fact, Tua Tagovailoa is currently the only QB in the entire NFL to beat Goff in at least 3 of those categories.

I am very aware of Goff’s limitations athletically. However, when you put up numbers like those, while leading your team to their first 5-1 start to a season since 2011, you deserve to be a lot higher than 8th in the MVP race.

As he continues to go from strength to strength, it will soon be impossible not to give Goff the recognition that he deserves.

Under-reaction: Jakobi Meyers has been a steal

The Las Vegas Raiders couldn’t believe their luck when the Patriots chose to move off of Jakobi Meyers this Off-Season, quickly signing the 5th year man to a 3 year $33million deal.

While the signing has proved to be one of the most commendable of the year, Meyers continues to fly under-the-radar.

After 6 weeks of the 2023 season, Jakobi Meyers has more receptions than Mike Evans, more receiving yards than Deebo Samuel and more touchdowns than Davante Adams. In fact, Meyers has more touchdowns than Adams despite having 5 less Red Zone targets.

With the 3-3 Raiders just starting to get into a rhythm, expect Jimmy G to continually put Meyers in a position to show off the elite skillset that has led to his numbers thus far – because it really is an elite skillset. As Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman said; “He could separate a lot. He could run routes. He was tough in the run game…” What more could you want?

I think it’s time we all give Jakobi Meyers a little bit more love, in 2023.

Under-reaction: Jalen Hurts vs pressure

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After throwing 3 Interceptions this Sunday, including one to Tony Adams that secured the win for the New York Jets, Jalen Hurts has faced a lot of criticism for his performance. Criticism that, while understandable, has stopped Hurts getting the credit he deserves for multiple moments of magic.

The Jets’ Defensive Line completely dominated the Eagles’ Offensive Line this week, resulting in Hurts being pressured 20 times – the most in his last 36 starts.

However, his unparalleled ability to avoid the rush meant that, despite recording a pressure on 40% of drop-backs, the Jets D were only able to sack Hurts twice all game. To quote Mark Sanchez; “They can’t get this guy to the turf. Jalen Hurts; what is he? Like a salmon covered in Vaseline…this guy’s just too slippery!”

If it wasn’t for Hurts repeatedly needing to escape a rapidly collapsing pocket, his confidence in his O-Line would likely have been considerably greater come the latter stages of the game – potentially resulting in a very different outcome.

Feature Image Credit: ESPN

Steve Moyse

NFL Analyst

Steve Moyse is a Writer, Podcaster and long suffering New York Jets fan. Stay tuned with his content via Twitter – @steve_moyse