NFL Week 4 Sunday Scramble: Derrick Henry, Josh Jacobs revive AFC contenders. Panthers, Steelers in trouble

Another football Sunday is almost in the books. The Eagles went undefeated. The Raiders got their first win. Cooper Rush got another dub. And that was just a taste of Week 4, with prime-time games still underway.

Will you miss the first waves of Week 4 action? Get fully up to date with ours Sunday match, a weekly roundup of top picks and tidbits. Like the best greasy breakfast dishes at your local diner, this is meant to be one of the good stuff — from weekly MVPs and true or false narratives to a look at next weekend’s best games and hot seat contenders.

Now dig in and let’s recap:

Week 4 Prizes

AFC MVP: Titans RB Derrick Henry

Not only did Henry look like his old self running hard against the Colts, but he was also the main reason Tennessee never had to worry about its division rivals on Sunday. The Titans may have a defined offensive ceiling as a whole, but when King Henry is on, he’s still a game-changer, this time to the tune of 147 total yards and a touchdown. Josh Jacobs had a similarly impressive day in the same role for the Raiders, who beat Denver for their first win.

NFC MVP: Seahawks QB Geno Smith

Raise your hand if you had Geno on the winning end of a 48-45 shootout with the Lions entering this year. Once again, the long backup was efficient and creative from the pocket, picking Detroit’s secondary to play spoiler. Not only did he throw two scores and protect the ball while averaging nearly 11 yards per attempt, but he also scored with his legs.

Coach of the week: Nick Sirianni of the Eagles

Against the red-hot Jaguars, with old Philly pal Doug Pederson in town, Sirianni leaned into his 2021 run-game roots thanks to the sloppy weather at Lincoln Financial Field while making some aggressive fourth-down calls to set the tone . . Down 14-0 early, his team never looked worried and eventually got the “W” to improve to 4-0.

Mr. Cool of the Week: Cowboys QB Cooper Rush

All this guy does is win. No, it’s actually not true. It also looks super smooth while doing it. Dallas is 3-0 with Rush filling in for Dak Prescott this year, and on Sunday against the Commanders, he once again opened it up down the field with confidence and touch. Protects the ball. He spreads it around. Why rush (no pun intended) Dak back?

Teams of the week

  • The Seahawksthat made 71-year-old Pete Carroll jump for joy in a shootout win over Detroit
  • The Giantsbecause he improved somewhat to 3-1 resting on the legs of Daniel Jones against Chicago
  • The Jetto prove how ill-prepared the Steelers are with an upset in Pittsburgh
  • The Explosivesto survive another heartbreaking upset against the Texans
  • The Patriotsbecause he took Green Bay to overtime with Bailey Zappé playing quarterback

Fantasy Favorites

The CBS Fantasy team has you covered with the latest waiver wire recommendations, Week 5 projections and more. In the meantime, here are the guys I’d be looking at if I were you:

  • Jets WR Corey Davis: Zach Wilson hasn’t been particularly efficient, but Davis now has at least five targets and 70 receiving yards in three of the Jets’ four games, passing Elijah Moore as the WR2 along with Garrett Wilson.
  • Chargers TE Gerald Everett: Even when Keenan Allen and Josh Palmer were both healthy, Justin Herbert looked his way. He now has six targets in three games and has found the end zone in half of his starts in LA
  • The Seahawks TE will Dissly: He’s riskier because he’s so dependent on red zone production, but Geno Smith likes him in that area. He has gone over 40 yards just once this year, but has also recorded a TD in three of four games.

Right or wrong

Which developing narratives — popular or artificial — are actually valid?

Mike Tomlin’s first losing season might finally happen: His offense gets a theoretical spark with Kenny Pickett replacing Mitchell Trubisky under center, and Pickett is sure to make the Steelers incrementally better. But they have a rough schedule and coordinator Matt Canada has yet to produce an encouraging overall performance. Verdict: TRUE

The Panthers are a lost cause: Forget their Week 4 win over the Saints. Saints are abused and untrustworthy. Carolina, meanwhile, continues to spray with the ball in hand. How soon until Sam Darnold returns to QB for good? And, better yet, how long until owner David Tepper decides on the Matt Rhule regime, right? Verdict: TRUE

Broncos can rest easy with Russell Wilson improved: Their star QB certainly had better numbers against the Raiders, showing off his old arm. But Denver also lost No. 1 running back Javonte Williams to Vegas, where its defense surrendered 30+ and Nathaniel Hackett’s game once again took a while to kick into high gear. This is still an ugly team. Verdict: WRONG

On the Horizon: Week 5

We still have a few games left to wrap up Week 4, but here’s how we’ll rank next week’s best matchups:

3. Giants vs. Packers: Brian Daboll’s team was imperfect but resilient. With or without Daniel Jones, they have Saquon Barkley and a tough defense to threaten Aaron Rodgers and Co., especially on a neutral court in London.

2. Bengals at Ravens: Can Baltimore’s defense make a stop for its life? They might have to do it at home, with Joe Barrow rolling into town after a long week off and Tee Higgins opposite Ja Mar Chase.

1. Raiders of the Chiefs: Love them or hate them, the Raiders tend to make it fun with Kansas City as Derek Carr plays the perennial underdog against Patrick Mahomes. This is also under the prime-time lights on Monday night.

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