Fifteen games are in the books for Week 3. What plays will we remember? Marc Sessler chooses the five runs that defined Sunday's action
Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles was a ghost in Week 2, vanishing from the lineup in the second half with what coach Romeo Crennel described as knee soreness. The fantasy-football-obsessed among us waved red flags over Jamaal's return from last season's torn ACL, but then Sunday happened. Charles exploded for 233 yards, looking every bit the player he was in 2010 and then some. We were warned his speed wouldn't return for months, if ever, but try telling that to the New Orleans Saints, who failed to catch Charles on this 91-yard frolic into the end zone.
Oakland Raiders running back Darren McFadden was set free last season when Hue Jackson shifted away from Tom Cable's zone-blocking scheme to a power-running style of offense that allowed the fifth-year veteran to use his natural gifts. McFadden's been injury-prone in recent years and he's playing behind an average line, but when he turns it on, he's among the game's more dangerous backs. McFadden set the tone early against the Pittsburgh Steelers' defense with this 64-yard touchdown gallop. Take a look.
Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said he wouldn't shy away from building his offense around Robert Griffin III, and he proved it Sunday. In a tight loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Griffin unveiled Washington's triple-option offense. He's obviously at home running these plays, but RG3 took a pounding from the defense, and we question how long Shanahan will allow his young passer to run head-on into the enemy. Griffin is already one of the game's most electric performers on the ground, and he isn't afraid to go into the belly of the beast, as shown on this 2-yard scoring burst.
Maurice Jones-Drew's nasty, summer-long holdout is a thing of the past. The Jacksonville Jaguars leaned heavy on MJD last season and they did it again in Sunday's dramatic win over the Indianapolis Colts. MJD's 28 carries for 177 yards squelched any questions about what sort of football shape he's in. Case in point: This 59-yard scoring run that helped Jacksonville pull the game back into focus. Nobody does it better.
Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder hasn't found his way onto many top 5 lists during his short NFL career. We've been watching from afar and mentioned his progress in the days leading up to Sunday's stunner over the San Francisco 49ers. Maybe he's not performing Superman dances in the end zone ala Cam Newton, but this second-year passer was efficient and found ways to extend the play against a 49ers team that might have overlooked this opponent. Here's Ponder skirting through eleven San Francisco defenders for the 23-yard score.
We can't list them all, but these were our favorites from Sunday. What were yours?
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