AllSportsNews NFL Notebook: Texans get rid of their Bill O'Brien problem after four brutal weeks

Six teams are still undefeated, a head coach is out, and COVID-19 sparks some schedule changes. A busy week in the NFL as the season hits the quarter pole.

Arizona Cardinals

- Kyler Murray threw for just 133 yards in Sunday's loss, the second-lowest total of his young career.

- The Cardinals have taken steps back since opening the season with back-to-back wins, but fear not: a Week 5 matchup with the Jets awaits.

- Following the firing of his former head coach, Bill O'Brien, DeAndre Hopkins took the high road, tweeting, "Wish bad on no man."

Atlanta Falcons

- The Falcons are one of four winless teams, at 0-4. Their next opportunity comes against the Panthers, who are riding a two-game win streak.

- Julio Jones attempted to play through a hamstring injury but didn't come out for the second half on Monday night.

- Calvin Ridley was targeted five times against the Packers but did not have a reception.

- Losing to the Packers with a limited offensive arsenal might get a pass, but a loss to Carolina in Week 5 would presumably be tough for Dan Quinn to survive.

Baltimore Ravens

- The Ravens signed Marlon Humphrey to a 5-year, $98.75 million contract extension on Thursday, making him the league's second-highest paid cornerback behind only Jalen Ramsey.

- With the win nearly in hand, the Ravens inserted Robert Griffin III against the team that drafted him - Griffin's only pass was intercepted. 

- Lamar Jackson became the quickest in NFL history to 5,000 passing yards and 2,000 rushing yards during Sunday's win.

Buffalo Bills

- The Bills are 4-0 for the first time since 2008. 

- Josh Allen exited briefly with an army injury on Sunday, but it turned out to be an issue with his non-throwing shoulder, rather than his wrist or thumb, as was initially feared. 

- Stefon Diggs is the NFL's co-leader in receiving yards, with 403. 

- Buffalo's game against the undefeated Titans has been in flux due to Tennessee's COVID-19 outbreak, but consecutive days of no positive tests is great news for this weekend.

Carolina Panthers

- Matt Rhule faced Kliff Kingsbury twice while coaching at Baylor, and the two met for the first time on NFL head coaches on Sunday.

- Robby Anderson has been a high-volume receiver in Joe Brady's offense, hauling in eight receptions against Arizona for the second time in the last three games.

- Christian McCaffrey will miss Week 5 with an ankle injury, but he is a candidate to return in Week 6, when eligible to be activated from IR.

Chicago Bears

- Nick Foles' first start with the Bears didn't go to well - Chicago didn’t find the end zone until the game's final two minutes in the team's first loss of the season.

- Allen Robinson has posted consecutive 100-yard performances, buoyed by some work in garbage-time on Sunday.

- Former Bears' lineman Kyle Long was critical of his former coach, Matt Nagy, on Twitter during Sunday's loss to the Colts. Long has not held back in voicing his displeasure with the Bears' current regime.

Cincinnati Bengals

- Joe Burrow became the first rookie in NFL history to throw for at least 300 yards in three consecutive games.

- Joe Mixon had 151 rushing yards in Sunday's win, the second-highest total of his career.

- The Bengals went back-to-back weeks without a loss for the first time since Weeks 4 and 5 of the 2018 season.

Cleveland Browns

- The Browns have put up 30 or more points in three consecutive games for the first time since 1968.

- Myles Garrett recorded his second consecutive multi-sack game and now has five sacks in his last three games. Through the first quarter of the season, he's a prime Defensive Player of the Year candidate. 

- Nick Chubb is set to miss six weeks with an MCL injury. Chubb had gotten off to an outstanding start this season. 

- Odell Beckham Jr. looked like Odell Beckham Jr. on Sunday, racking up three touchdowns, including a spectacular rushing touchdown late in the game to seal the win. 

- Jarvis Landry threw a touchdown pass against Dallas and had some fun with it on Twitter, saying Monday, "I threw 1 pass yesterday and my LAT feels like I pitched 9 innings." 

Dallas Cowboys

- Dak Prescott is unbelievably on pace for 6,760 passing yards, which would shatter the single-season record of 5,477. 

- The Cowboys' defense has been porous through the first quarter of the season, but Mike McCarthy said Monday that Mike Nolan will stay on as defensive coordinator.

- Tackle La'el Collins is having season-ending hip surgery this week.

- Things would get ugly if the Cowboys fall to the Giants in Week 5, but that can't happen … right?

Denver Broncos

- The Broncos are winless no more, and they'll gladly take the win, even against a brutally bad Jets team. 

- Vic Fangio skipped a postgame handshake with the Jets on Thursday, after New York's defense committed several personal fouls with the game effectively out of reach. Fangio told his team to go directly into the locker room and later said he was attempting to prevent confrontations.

- Brett Rypien was a mixed bag in his first NFL start, tossing three interceptions but getting the win and displaying a good connection with Tim Patrick. 

- Fangio said on Friday that Drew Lock is "50/50" to return in Week 5, but it's been reported that Week 6 is more realistic.

Detroit Lions

- The Lions have lost their last six games in which they led by double-digits. Detroit got out to an early 14-0 lead over New Orleans on Sunday.

- Kenny Golladay has 13 touchdowns in his last 18 games.

- Matt Patricia and the Lions have to sit on their 1-3 record through their bye week.

Green Bay Packers

- Robert Tonyan, who entered this season with two career touchdown receptions, had three on Monday night.

- Davante Adams was listed as questionable but did not play in Monday's win over the Falcons. 

- Allen Lazard received crushing news after his breakout performance in Week 3, as he's set to miss 4-8 weeks due to a core muscle injury.

- Aaron Rodgers is a prime MVP candidate: through four games, he's completed 70.5% of passes for 1,214 yards, 13 touchdowns, and zero interceptions.

Houston Texans

- The Texans fired head coach and general manager Bill O'Brien on Monday, a day after dropping to 0-4.

- O'Brien coached exactly 100 games in Houston, finishing with a 52-48 regular season record and 2-4 playoff record.

- 73-year-old Romeo Crennel, a former head coach in Cleveland and longtime O'Brien assistant in Houston, will serve as the Texans' interim head coach for the remainder of the season.

- The Texans are one of two AFC teams still winless through four weeks.

Indianapolis Colts

- As the Cowboys' defense flails, former Dallas assistant Matt Eberflus is thriving as the Colts' defensive coordinator. Indianapolis didn't allow a touchdown until the final two minutes on Sunday.

- Colts opponents are averaging 9.7 points/game across Indianapolis' last three games. 

- The Colts host the Browns this week in a clash between two red-hot teams on three-game win streaks.

Jacksonville Jaguars 

- Gardner Minshew threw for 351 yards in Sunday's loss to the Bengals, the second-highest mark of his career.

- D.J. Chark returned from a one-game absence with two touchdowns against Cincinnati.

- The Jaguars have fallen back to Earth after a surprising Week 1 win over the Colts, falling to 1-3 despite playing some winnable games against Miami and Cincinnati. 

Kansas City Chiefs

- Practice squad quarterback Jordan Ta'amu tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday. Strangely enough, Ta'amu had been playing the role of Cam Newton, who also tested positive this weekend, for the Chiefs' scout team.

- Travis Kelce is now 11th all-time among tight ends in receiving yards, passing Kellen Winslow on Monday.

- Patrick Mahomes has just five interceptions in his last 18 regular season games. 

- Including the playoffs, Kansas City has won 13 consecutive games. 

Las Vegas Raiders

- Jason Witten reached 13,000 career receiving yards during Sunday's loss. He's 19th on the all-time list and second among tight ends. 

- The Raiders are going through a gauntlet right now, as they're set to face the undefeated Chiefs after losses to the Patriots and Bills.

- Josh Jacobs' efficiency has dipped in his second season - he's averaging just 3.6 yards/carry through four games.

Los Angeles Chargers

- Anthony Lynn has been adamant that Tyrod Taylor will be the team's quarterback once he returns from a team-inflicted injury, but it's become painfully clear that Justin Herbert is the better option.

- Taylor's status for Week 5 is unknown - Lynn has been noncommittal, and he didn't formally rule out the veteran quarterback until the hours leading up to the Chargers' game against Tampa.

- Austin Ekeler will miss 4-6 weeks after suffering a strained hamstring, which is somewhat positive news after Ekeler was carted to the locker room. 

Los Angeles Rams

- Jalen Ramsey threw a punch at Giants' receiver Golden Tate during a postgame scuffle on Sunday.

- The Rams' defense was outstanding in the win over New York, carrying the weight during an uncharacteristically quiet day from the offense.

- It wasn't pretty, but a win is a win, and losses by both the Cardinals and 49ers give the rams sole possession of second-place in the NFC West.

Miami Dolphins

- The Dolphins own the Texans' first and second-round picks in the 2021 NFL Draft. Houston is 0-4 and fired coach Bill O'Brien on Monday.

- Brian Flores said on Tuesday that Ryan Fitzpatrick would start in Week 5, despite throwing two interceptions against the Seahawks. Fitzpatrick's hold on the starting job seems to be a week-to-week matter. 

- Byron Jones missed his second consecutive game with Achilles and groin injuries, after practicing on a limited basis last week. 

Minnesota Vikings

- Dalvin Cook is on pace for nearly 1,700 rushing yards, after a second consecutive monster performance. 

- Harrison Smith was ejected from Sunday's game after a helmet-to-helmet hit on Texans tight end Jordan Akins.

- Justin Jefferson had his second consecutive 100-yard performance on Sunday, and the rookie is now 8th in the league with 348 receiving yards.

- With Bill O'Brien's firing, Mike Zimmer is now the only one of seven head coaches hired in 2014 still standing. O'Brien, Jay Gruden, and Jim Caldwell were among the other coaches hired during that cycle.

New England Patriots

- The Patriots saw their game pushed to Monday night after it was revealed Saturday that Cam Newton tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately, no other players tested positive.

- Brian Hoyer was benched for Jarrett Stidham, who wasn't any better, against the Chiefs. To think they were the top quarterbacks on the Patriots' depth chart until the end of June…

- Hoyer and Stidham combined to finish 20-of-37 for 190 yards, one touchdown, and three interceptions in Monday's loss. 

- Chase Winovich has 2.5 sacks in his last three games as his breakout season continues. 

- The Patriots placed Sony Michel on IR with a quad injury. It's expected to be a short-term injury, but Damien Harris might've cut into Michel's workload with a 100-yard rushing performance against Kansas City.

New Orleans Saints

- Michael Thomas missed a third consecutive game due to an ankle injury, but his status is trending upward. 

- New Orleans has an extra day to get Thomas healthy for Week 5, with a Monday night matchup against the Chargers.

- The Saints' offense got back on track against the Lions, with Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray combining for 147 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.

New York Giants

- The Giants are a league-worst 12-40 since the start of the 2017 season.

- Golden Tate was at the center of a scuffle with Jalen Ramsey at the end of Sunday's game, but Joe Judge said Monday that he was defending himself and won't be disciplined.

- Devonta Freeman led the Giants in carries on Sunday, but Wayne Gallman did the most with his six attempts, rushing for 75 yards.

New York Jets

- The Jets appear to be at rock-bottom, at least until next week, and their upcoming schedule isn't favorable - after the Cardinals and Chargers, they face the Bills, Chiefs, and Patriots, who are a combined 8-1. 

- New York did not fire Adam Gase following Thursday night's loss to the Broncos, despite speculation that ownership was watching the game closely with Gase's job in mind. 

- Sam Darnold returned on Thursday after suffering a sprained shoulder, but the Jets are reportedly leaning toward having him sit in Week 5. If that's the case, Joe Flacco would get the start against Arizona. 

- Rookie tackle Mekhi Becton was said to be active only in case of emergency on Thursday with a shoulder injury, but he was quickly inserted into the game and was clearly in pain before being removed.

- Pierre Desir misplayed a ball that turned into a Jerry Jeudy touchdown in the first half on Thursday, but he went on to intercept Brett Rypien twice - once for a touchdown.

Philadelphia Eagles

- The winless Philadelphia Eagles became the first-place Philadelphia Eagles! Sunday night's win over the 49ers was enough to put the Eagles atop the NFC East at 1-2-1.

- Philadelphia's win was only the second out-of-division win by an NFC East team this season, joining the Cowboys' comeback victory over Atlanta.

- The Eagles continue to be short on healthy receivers, forcing Carson Wentz to connect with John Hightower and Travis Fulgham during the game-winning drive on Sunday.

- Pennsylvania announced Tuesday that fans will be allowed at sporting events, at 15% capacity - about 7,500 people, for the Eagles. The city of Philadelphia will have to approve fans at Lincoln Financial Field before anyone is allowed in.

Pittsburgh Steelers

- The Steelers saw their Week 4 game against Tennessee postponed due to the Titans' COVID-19 outbreak, and the game is now set to be played on October 25.

- Pittsburgh's Week 7 matchup with Baltimore has been moved to Week 8 (November 1). The division rivals will face off on Thanksgiving later in the month. 

- Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced Tuesday that sporting events are allowed to host fans at 15% capacity, which is about 7,500 people at Heinz Field. The city of Pittsburgh must approve as well, and it's unclear how quickly fans would be allowed in. 

San Francisco 49ers

- George Kittle tried to make up for lost time with 183 yards and a touchdown in his return from injury Sunday night.

- Nick Mullens was benched late in Sunday night's loss, and C.J. Beathard had a respectable finish to the game. If Jimmy Garoppolo is unable to go in Week 5, Kyle Shanahan could turn to Beathard. 

- Second-year receiver Deebo Samuel made his season-debut on Sunday after suffering a foot injury over the summer.

Seattle Seahawks

- D.K. Metcalf has been a monster through the first quarter of the season - he had 106 yards in Sunday's win and has posted between 90-110 yards in each of his four games.

- Metcalf is tied for the league-lead with 403 receiving yards.

- Jamal Adams missed Sunday's win with a groin injury, but he posted a picture of himself watching from home while wearing a helmet on Instagram.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

- Tom Brady recorded his first five-touchdown passing game since September 24, 2017. Brady didn't even have a four-touchdown performance in 2019. 

Brady has thrown four pick-sixes in his last six games, including playoffs.

- Something to watch: Brady is now only three passing touchdowns shy of the all-time record, but the record is a moving target: Drew Brees. Brees had only two touchdowns in Week 4, allowing Brady to cut the margin in half.

- Chris Godwin missed Sunday's game with a hamstring injury, as expected, but Mike Evans picked up the slack with 122 yards and a touchdown on seven receptions.

Tennessee Titans

- Nine Titans players tested positive for COVID-19, but the team had no positive tests on Monday or Tuesday, clearing the way for their facility to open on Wednesday.

- The nine players added to the COVID-19/Reserve list were Jeffery Simmons, Adam Humphries, DaQuan Jones, Kristian Fulton, Kamalei Correa, Beau Brinkley, Tommy Hudson, Khari Blasingame, and Cameron Batson.

- The Titans will be a bit shorthanded against the Bills this week, especially on the defensive side of the ball, but it'll be a key matchup of two undefeated teams.

Washington Football Team

- Terry McLaurin is a star: the second-year receiver had his second 100-yard performance of the season on Sunday and is on pace for 1,548 yards through four games. 

- Ron Rivera, battling cancer, was seen leaning on a team PR employee while heading into the locker room before halftime, but he stuck it out and continued coaching in the second half.

- Ian Rapoport reported Sunday morning that Haskins could be pulled for Kyle Allen. That didn't happen, but Haskins reportedly "must improve greatly" to hold onto the starting job.

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