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Alex Smith is back, and deserves some Madden love

The Chiefs had an offensive breakout last week against the Jets. They didn't win, but the offense looked pretty good. The Chiefs totaled 474 yards of total offense, the fifth time they surpassed 400 total yards this season. They exploded for four offensive touchdowns, after they had four in their previous four games combined. That's right, I said combined.

Alex Smith was the key to this resurgence as he looked like the guy who beat the New England Patriots in Week 1. And yes, that seems like a long, long time again. Kind of like when you see Eliza Coupe on your television and you're all, "Oh man, I miss Happy Endings and that show should have never been canceled." And then you realize that show was canceled in 2013. That's right, 2013. Sure, Alex Smith's recent drought doesn't seem like that long ago. Actually it does, mostly because I have Tyreek Hill and Kareem Hunt on my fantasy teams.

Smith had four touchdown passes (more importantly no picks) for the second time this season. The benefactors being Hill (six receptions for 185 yards and two touchdowns) and Travis Kelce (four receptions and two touchdowns). So it was pretty fun to see. Hill is one of the most electrifying people in all of football. If I ever hit the sticks, I like to use the Chiefs because of him. And seriously, if Andy Reid is really intent on giving up play calling, I'd like to throw my hat into the ring because I really like to think I know what I'm doing with the Chiefs.

One thing I would do would be to give the ball to Kareem Hunt. What's happening here? He rushed for 40 yards on just nine carries. That was a season low. So I wouldn't ding his rating or anything. You can't blame him if he's not being used properly.

All right, enough about that. Here are some players who could use a boost in the Madden ratings this week.

»Blake Bortles is starting to play pretty well. Stop laughing, I'm serious about this. Bortles passed for 309 yards and a pair of touchdowns against the Colts. And let's be honest, the Colts are out there like that kid who shows up to your house and wants to play Madden even though he hasn't played in like six years (or ever). So beating him isn't going to be one of your crowning achievements. But it's still an NFL team and Blake looked pretty great.

»We all know Josh McCown has been amazing, Robby Anderson has been the main benefactor. Or has he? Jermaine Kearse has been the most-targeted Jets receiver and he finished last week with nine receptions for 157 yards. No touchdown, but he should be moving up.

»Speaking of quarterbacks who should be starting for the Bears, let's talk Jimmy Garoppolo. And I should point out, that's not a fair statement. Mitch Trubisky can play. He's going to be a good NFL quarterback. I just know had I been running the Bears a few seasons back, I would have snagged Jimmy G to have him learn under the G.O.A.T. Jay Cutler. But instead he's the 49ers quarterback and he led the team to a win over his hometown Bears (he's from Arlington Heights, Illinois). He completed 26 of 37 and looked pretty good.

»If you follow me in regards to fantasy football, you no doubt will be familiar with my affinity for Rex Burkhead. This guy had 12 carries for 78 yards and two touchdowns. He also had three receptions for 25 receiving yards. I'm not going to tell the fine folks over at EA how to do their jobs. But I'd like to see Burkhead be a 100 overall. I think that's a somewhat reasonable request.

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