1. I know the Bears defense pushes them past the Packers as the best team in football. The defense has scored seven, yes 7!, touchdowns in eight weeks. That's amazing. The NFL record is 9, by the way. Mix in 25 sacks, 17 interceptions, and 14 forced fumbles, and this defense is on pace to be the best ever. Jay Cutler, Matt Forte, and Brandon Marshall can do enough on offense to make them a serious Super Bowl contender.
One of my favorite plays of the week was the entire offensive line pushing Forte into the end zone on his touchdown. (Trying to get video.)
Also, for what it's worth, my top 4: Bears, Packers, Texans, and the Falcons.
2. I know the NFC North is easily the best division in football. It helps having the two best teams in football in the same division but combined, these four teams are 10 games over .500. The next closest division is two games over the mark (NFC West). Every team has a positive point differential. No other division has more than two teams that can say that. This is going to be an exciting final eight weeks.
3. I know the Colts are an actual threat to make the playoffs. As I wrote four weeks back, Andrew Luck is the real deal. With the Chuck Pagano situation adding another element of motivation, the Indianapolis Colts have a one game lead in the AFC Wildcard race. After all that has gone on in Indy, I have to think there is a large population of this country rooting for them to keep the leg up.
4. I know Doug Martin is not Ray Rice 2.0. He's better. He's got 486 yards and six touchdowns in the last two weeks. BEAST.
5. I know this clas sof rookie quarterbacks just keeps getting better. Ryan Tannehill and RGIII both lost today but things look promising for the Dolphins and Redskins. Russell Wilson led the Seahawks to another home win, moving Seattle into a tie for the second NFC Wildcard spot. Even Brandon Weeden had the Browns ahead of the Ravens in the fourth quarter before another inevitable collapse.
6. I know it was a bad week for Vegas as favorites have gone 10-2 so far this week. I'm sure Darren Rovell or Chad Millman will have some numbers tomorrow about how much gamblers won.
7. I know I liked Mike Tomlin's fake field goal a lot better than I liked Les Miles' fake field goal.
Down 20-17 with 11 minutes left in the 4th quarter, Pittsburgh faked a 20-yard gimme field goal. Tomlin knew even if they didn't convert the fake, they would have the Giants pinned deep in their own territory. They were stuffed on their attempt, but the Steelers forced a three-and-out and scored the go ahead touchdown on the next drive on their way to a 24-20 game. Smart gamble.
On the flip side, everyone in Louisiana knows Miles loves trickery on special teams. Couldn't have been more predictable. I also think Miles made a huge mistake when he green-lighted a fied goal attempt with under two minutes left in the fourth quarter instead of trying to make a first down on 4th-and-6 from the Bama 28. They win the game if they convert. Back to the NFL...
8. I know the Jaguars have the least hope of any franchise in football. Blaine Gabbert needs to be put out to pasture. Without MJD, this team has zero hope.
9. I know I liked/like: the Redskins throwback uniforms, especially the helmets; Reggie Wayne's touchdown celebration when he gave a fan a high-5; Torrey Smith's spin moe on the way to the end zone; CJ2K's speed; Eric Decker's hands.
10. I know I didn't/don't like: next week's slate of games which only pits two teams with winning records against each other; fans chanting Heeee-ath after Heath Miller catches a pass, I can understand Cruuuuz or Kuuuhn but why Heath?
11. I know the Eagles will beat the Saints tomorrow night, 34-30, as Michael Vick saves his job on national television. Philly's offense has been a joke. They have actually scored fewer points than the Chiefs, albeit in one less game. Fewer. Points. Than. The Chiefs. Unfortunately for the Saints, they give up 50 yards per game more than the next closest team. Their defense is historically terrible. It's only a matter of time before Vick and LeSean McCoy figure things out
"11 Things I Know I Know" is my feeble attempt to trump the
untrumpable SI.com's Peter King and his "10 Things I Think I Think" is
my favorite article each week.