Belichick’s fourth-down call highlights one of the top storylines in football

Nathan Stacken

Nathan Stacken

Hello and welcome to another edition of the Stack Attack, where I list the top five stories and storylines in the NFL. Let’s get right to it.

1. The best game of the season, maybe ever.

The game on Nov. 15 between the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts was another battle in the best current rivalry in the NFL. And what a game it was. The Colts trailed by 17 points in the fourth quarter and rallied back to win the game when Peyton Manning found wide receiver Reggie Wayne in the end zone with 13 seconds left to win the game 35-34. A back-and-forth game – it was great. Even if you are just a casual sports fan or football fan, it was hard not to watch this game. Which leads me to?

2. Bill Belichick’s blunder

The sports world is buzzing about Belichick’s decision to go for the first down on fourth-and-two. Oh yeah; he was on his own 28-yard line, and Manning was on the other sideline. Why would you want to give Manning a short field to work with? Seventy yards is tough enough to stop Manning from, let alone 30. The Patriots didn’t make it, and the Colts scored on the ensuing possession. Regardless of whether the Pats converted the fourth down or not, it was still a terrible call, and one that people will question for a long time.

3. Chris Johnson is the best running back in the NFL.

With all due respect to Adrian Peterson, Johnson has overtaken him as the best running back in the NFL. Johnson had 132 yards rushing and 100 yards receiving on Nov. 15 against the Bills. He now has 1,091 yards rushing this season and is on pace for over 1,900 yards this season, not to mention that he has nine total touchdowns. He is the sole reason that the Tennessee Titans are even worth watching this season.

4. The Cincinnati Bengals are leading the AFC North.

I’ll give you a few minutes to let that sink in ? ready? Hard to believe that we are even talking about the Bengals at this point in the season, let alone talking about the fact that they are leading the AFC North, a division with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens. All the Bengals did on Nov. 15 was go into Pittsburgh, a tough place to play, and beat the Steelers at their own game by being the more physical team. The defense is better, and they’re balanced on offense. This team now has the confidence going into the playoffs that they can win anywhere, and that is a scary thing.

5. 30 down, two to go.

There are still two undefeated teams in the NFL: the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts. The last time two teams were undefeated this late in the season was 1990 when the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers were each 10-0. It seems safe to say that at least one of these teams will play in the Super Bowl.