Another 16 games played, another 799 points scored, Week 3 of the NFL season is in the books, which means it’s time to pick out the most impressive performances on the offensive side of the ball.
One of the nominees makes a repeat appearance from last week and many more before it, another is in the midst of a bounce-back season, while the third is beginning to emerge as one of the league’s upper-echelon pass catchers. But who was your Offensive Player of the Week? Read about the nominees and cast your vote at the bottom of the page.
Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots
Yes, of course it’s Tom Brady. The 18-year veteran clearly doesn’t take losing very well, as he continued to respond to the Patriots’ Week 1 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in fine style. After being reduced to just one healthy wideout during Week 2, Brady’s receiving corps was back to full strength on Sunday, and he used them to full effect.
By the end of the game, he had 378 passing yards, five touchdowns to three different receivers, plus a two-point conversion to complete the 40th fourth-quarter comeback of his career. In the two games since that Week 1 defeat, he now has a completion percentage of 74.3, going for 825 yards, eight touchdowns, and zero interceptions. Doesn’t get much better than that.
Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams
After a terrible year in 2016, many thought Todd Gurley was going to be a one-and-done guy, forever failing to live up to the promise he showed in his debut season, in which he ran for over 1,100 yards and ten touchdowns. He started off slowly this season, but in Week 3 he ran riot over the San Francisco 49ers, breaking a streak of 20 games without a 100-yard rushing performance.
Not only was Gurley effective on the ground against the 49ers, dashing in for two scores, he also did damage through the air, making five catches for 36 yards and a touchdown. With three touchdowns on the day, he doubled his total for the season to six, thus matching his total for the entirety of 2016.
Stefon Diggs, WR, Minnesota Vikings
For a decade, the Minnesota Vikings offense revolved around one person: Adrian Peterson. Since his departure in the offseason, that offense, now under the guidance of offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur, has undergone a total redesign, centred around the receiving duo of Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen. Together, the pair put up 271 yards on Sunday, but it was Diggs who led the way with 173 yards and two touchdowns on eight catches.
With only two-and-a-half minutes played in the second half, Diggs already had the second most receiving yards in a game by anyone in the 2017 season, but by then the game was won and quarterback Case Keenum was able to use other weapons in his arsenal of receivers, leaving Diggs stranded on 173.
Special mention must go to Keenum, of course, who is in only his second week starting under center for the Vikings in place of the injured Sam Bradford. After a week when he managed just 167 passing yards against the Steelers, he more than doubled that against the Buccaneers this week, finishing with a QB rating of 142.1, the second-highest of his career.
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