Week 8 is the first in which we've come as close as possible to average combined performance for road teams. It wasn't great, but it wasn't terrible, either. Visiting squads won six of 13 games on Sunday, but even a few of those were ugly.
It took the Atlanta Falcons a major collapse and one final, crushing penalty to surrender a 21-point lead that at times seemed insurmountable for the Detroit Lions to notch Sunday's first road win. Seattle needed a beautiful strike from Russell Wilson to Luke Willson to complete a 13-9 comeback win over the Panthers in Charlotte. It was a productive drive at just the right time, but that doesn't erase the fact that Seattle had a horrid day offensively. I'm sorry, Wilson.
With that being said, we still had a few diamonds in the rough on Sunday. Here are your most outstanding away from home.
Greatest on the Road ...
Arian Foster, Houston Texans
So much for Foster being past his prime.
The Texans' running back once again looks like the undrafted back out of Tennessee with a chip larger than the Astrodome -- or whatever is left of it -- on his shoulder. He's quick, powerful and he looks so smooth running the football.
Tennessee is bad -- we're all well aware of this -- but Foster took care of business from the outset. Tied 3-3 midway through the second quarter, Foster took a zone handoff and cut back before accelerating across and down the field toward the pylon, outrunning three defenders and hurdling another before crossing the goal line for Houston's first touchdown of the afternoon.
Foster's 151 yards and two touchdowns powered a Texans rushing attack that chewed up 212 yards on the ground. The back also caught four passes out of the backfield for 22 yards and another touchdown. Essentially, Foster was Houston's offense on Sunday, while JJ Watt and Co. made sure Titans rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger learned to respect the football game, not his selfie game.
What's more impressive is Foster's recent run. The running back who consistently wound up in the headlines for his on-field performance two seasons ago is suddenly back to his old form, which made him a top fantasy pick and made the Texans instant contenders, despite shoddy quarterbacking from Matt Schaub. This time around, Houston is led by Ryan Fitzpatrick, who will never be Peyton Manning but is doing the best he can to help the Texans win games. Foster's increased production plays a massive part in Houston's winning percentage, and with performances like Sunday, it looks like the Texans aren't going away anytime soon, whether at home or on the road.
Also considered ...
Sammy Watkins, Buffalo Bills
Buffalo swapped first-rounders with Cleveland in 2014 and traded its 2015 first-round pick to the Browns in order to move up and take Watkins with the No. 4 pick, and for a while, it looked like it might have been a reach. Then Watkins fully recovered from a preseason rib injury and has scored three touchdowns in the last two games.
If it weren't for the hustle of converted Jets safety Saalim Hakim -- and the immaturity of Watkins -- the rookie wideout would be on a two-touchdown-per-game tear in the last two contests. One less score doesn't make it any less impressive, though, and Watkins capped Sunday with a per-catch average of 52.3 yards. Those are numbers I put up when I play Madden -- not when I watch Bills/Jets on a Sunday afternoon in October.
Anthony Barr, Minnesota Vikings
Three cheers for a defensive player making an appearance!
The rookie linebacker recorded eight tackles, sacked Tampa Bay quarterback Mike Glennon once and then stepped up for a rare walk-off win.
A mere seven seconds into the overtime period, Glennon connected with Austin Seferian-Jenkins on a short pass. Barr closed in on Seferian-Jenkins, stripped the ball out of the big tight end's hands, stayed on his feet despite the science of physics telling him otherwise, scooped up the ball and blazed down the sideline for a walk-off fumble recovery returned for a touchdown. It was an absolutely stunning turn of events and very 2014 Buccaneers-ish of Tampa Bay.