Drew Brees threw four interceptions — two returned for touchdowns by a defensive lineman named David Bowens less than a week after Brees' second son, Bowen, was born — and it wasn't even the oddest thing to happen during his team's game. That's just a hint of how absurd today's slate of early games was.
Virtually wherever one looked at the eight 1 p.m. games today, there was something that made head-scratching a necessity. Let's run down the weirdness.
Ravens vs. Bills: Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for four touchdowns, one to Steve Johnson, a third-year receiver from Kentucky who had 158 yards, or more than he had ever had in any two other NFL games combined. The Bills looked like an NFL team for an entire game, and came back from a ten-point fourth quarter deficit to lose in overtime.
Saints vs. Browns: Brees threw four picks, his most since September 2007. The Browns successfully executed a throwback on a punt return and a fake punt that saw their punter run for 68 yards. The defending Super Bowl champs lost to the Browns, who were being quarterbacked by a rookie.
Bears vs. Redskins: The teams combined for nine turnovers. DeAngelo Hall tied an NFL record with four interceptions. (Some of the interceptions were really cool-looking!) A Graham Gano field goal bounced of the rim of the top of the left upright, which led Donovan McNabb to switch from elation to deflation very quickly and hilariously. This was the game Fox sent its best color commentator, Troy Aikman, to announce. I haven't even covered half of the oddities.
Titans vs. Eagles: After building a 19-10 lead, the Eagles gave up 26 unanswered fourth-quarter points and lost 36-19. Kenny Britt ended up with a monster day — seven catches for 225 yards and three touchdowns — after making just three catches in the first three quarters.
(Shotgun) B.Roethlisberger up the middle for 2 yards, TOUCHDOWN. Miami challenged the touchback ruling, and the play was REVERSED. (Shotgun) B.Roethlisberger up the middle to MIA 1 for 1 yard (C.Clemons). FUMBLES (C.Clemons), declared dead at MIA 1. 2nd part of review was not able to determine who recovered the ball.
If that sounds confusing, it totally was. We'll have video of the explanation shortly.