October 9, 2020 | 9:34am
Nick Foles and the Bears entered this Week 5 “Thursday Night Football” matchup as field goal home underdogs to Tom Brady and the Buccaneers.
Foles and Brady had met in Super Bowl 52 when both quarterbacks were members of different teams. The Eagles defeated the Patriots by a score of 41-33, and Foles was named the MVP of the game.
Both teams entered this matchup with 3-1 records. The game was a nail-biter to the very end and was ultimately decided by a late, 38-yard field goal. The Bears won 20-19 and move to 4-1, while the Buccaneers drop to 3-2.
Here are six things you need to know for fantasy football:
1. Tom Brady falters in two-minute drill in Super Bowl 52 rematch versus Nick Foles
Brady has been renowned for his two-minute drill in clutch situations throughout his 21-year NFL career, but he was unable to pull off the come-from-behind win this time. With the Buccaneers trailing by one point and 1:13 remaining in the game, Mike Evans was able to get a quick first down. Brady then missed to Evans, Rob Gronkowski and Cameron Brate and even appeared to lose track of downs. The drive ended as a turnover on downs, quelling the Buccaneers’ three-game win streak.
The six-time Super Bowl champion finished with an underwhelming 25 completions on 41 attempts for 253 yards and one touchdown, which is bad news for anyone who started him this week. He should bounce back next week against the Packers at home.
Foles completed 30 of 42 passes for 243 yards, one touchdown and one interception by cornerback Carlton Davis. He remains a low-end start in two-quarterback leagues.
2. Ronald Jones II dominates Tampa backfield over rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn
Jones made the most of his chance to shine on primetime with Leonard Fournette and LeSean McCoy both hobbled with ankle injuries. He had 17 carries for 106 yard and three catches for 19 yards.
Vaughn had the chance to step up amid injuries to the Buccaneers’ rushers, but saw zero carries all evening and caught two of three passes for five yards. He fumbled inside the two-minute mark in the second quarter which was recovered by linebacker Robert Quinn. The turnover occurred at the Tampa 27-yard line and resulted in a Chicago touchdown to tight end Jimmy Graham to close out the half.
Vaughn — the Buccaneers’ 2020 third-round pick — was also injured on the play and did return to the game. It’s clear head coach Bruce Arians doesn’t trust the rookie, especially in light of ball security issues. Jones truthers (of which there are many) can finally rejoice. Vaughn isn’t startable in any format.
3. Allen Robinson II continues to produce in spite of questionable quarterback play; Anthony Miller barely featured
You have to feel for Robinson, who has spent his entire career catching passes from Chad Henne, Blake Bortles, Mitch Trubisky and now Foles. The 2014 second-rounder led the team in targets and caught ten of 16 for 90 yards. His talent and volume keep him in the low-end WR1 tier.
Miller saw just four targets all evening and caught all four for 28 yards. He has struggled all season with drops and inefficiency and his target share continues to drop with rookie Darnell Mooney emerging as the No. 2 option. Miller is a low-end WR4/5 and not start-worthy except in the deepest of leagues.
4. David Montgomery has good night in spite of difficult matchup
Montgomery faced his second straight difficult matchup opposite the Buccaneers’ defensive line, which held the Chargers’ running backs to a combined 1.65 yards per carry in Week 4. He finished with ten carries for 29 yards and a touchdown. He was also Brady’s second-most targeted player behind Robinson and ahead of Miller and caught seven of eight targets for 30 yards.
Montgomery has little to no competition for touches with Tarik Cohen done for the year. His rushing efficiency was a bit disappointing, but his volume — especially in the passing game — is encouraging and should continue. He remains a low-end RB2.
5. Mike Evans leads Buccaneers in targets, scores for fifth-straight game
Evans — who entered this game as questionable with an ankle injury — reeled in yet another touchdown and is on pace to score 19 touchdowns. He finished with five catches on nine targets for 41 yards and one score.
He could cool off once Chris Godwin recovers from his hamstring injury, but it’s clear that Brady likes targeting the towering, 6-foot-5 wideout in the end zone. He remains a WR2 with upside in light of injury concerns.
It was Tyler Johnson, the Buccaneers’ 2020 fifth-round pick, who actually led the team in receiving yards and caught four of six targets for 61 yards. The rookie could be an interesting name to watch if Godwin remains sidelined.
6. Rob Gronkowski and Cameron Brate see identical targets after O.J. Howard injury
Howard went down with an Achilles injury in Week 4 and is out for the season, leading many to believe Gronkowski would emerge from this three-headed tight end time share. He split targets with Brate and caught three of six targets for 52 yards, while Brate caught five of six targets for 44 yards. It’s disappointing for anyone with stock in Gronkowski, whom many thought would quickly ascend to TE1 status in light of his relationship with Brady heading into the season. He remains outside the top-12 tier at the position.