The 2016 NFL Season is in the books. No need to fret. The 2017 NFL Season officially begins in March. But, before even thinking about this coming NFL Season, it’s time to look back my 20 Awesome 2016 NFL Moments from this past season. Check it out!
20 Awesome 2016 NFL Moments
Bill Belichick Smiles After Super Bowl LI
Even the gruff Bill Belichick had to smile after his quarterback led the Patriots to an amazing 34 to 28 win over Atlanta in Super Bowl LI. At first, it appeared as if Belichick wasn’t going to smile. I also remember him turning away from the camera before turning his never-ending frown upside down. But, there it was…a smile from Bill Belichick. Check out Gruff Bill holding his smile for an eternity (at least for him!) during an interview with ESPN.
Doug Baldwin Throws a TD Pass to QB Russell Wilson
With the score Seattle 16 and Philadelphia 7, it sure felt like the Eagles had a shot to get back into the football game. Then, at the 7:31 mark of the 3rd Quarter, Doug Baldwin tossed a beautiful 15-yard TD pass to QB Russell Wilson. Seattle would eventually go on to win its third straight. Although nobody knew it at the time, it was only Week 11, the win over the Eagles all but assured that Seattle was going to win the NFC West Division.
Patrick Peterson Gets a One-Handed Interception Against Buffalo
With Buffalo up 10 to 0 in Week 3, Arizona needed a big play from its defense. Peterson provided one by snagging a long Tyrod Taylor pass for an interception. It was one of the most spectacular interceptions you’re ever going to see in an NFL game. Unfortunately, Arizona QB Carson Palmer threw 4 interceptions that day. The Cardinals lost 18 to 33.
Jets Run the Old Hook and Ladder Play Versus the Rams
— NFL (@NFL) November 13, 2016
One of the worst matchups of the regular season had the L.A. Rams traveling to battle the New York Jets in the Meadowlands. The lone Jets score was a lateral. QB Bryce Petty passed it to WR Brandon Marshall. Marshall lateraled it to RB Bilal Powell who marched into the end zone for a 4-yard TD. One would think that such a play might swing momentum to the Jets’ side. Nope. NYJ not only missed the kick on Powell’s TD, they allowed the Rams to kick two more field goals and ended up losing 6 to 9.
Ezekiel Elliott Dominates the Steelers
Dallas Cowboys versus Pittsburgh Steelers is one of the great NFC versus AFC rivalries in the NFL. In Week 10, Ezekiel Elliott did his impersonation of Tony Dorsett by pummeling the Steel Curtain for an incredible 114 yards and 2 TDs from 21 carries. His second TD was the game winner, a 32-yard romp through a hole the size of Ohio with 9 second left in the fourth quarter.
Antonio Brown Scores 3 TDs Versus the Colts
It’s incredible how teams know that Steelers’ QB Ben Roethlisberger is going to throw the football to Antonio Brown…but defenses never do anything to stop it. Brown single-handedly punished the Indianapolis Colts on Thanksgiving Night this season. In the first quarter, he caught a 25-yard pass from Big Ben for a TD. In the second quarter, Brown caught a 33-yard pass from Big Ben for a TD. Then, just to prove that he truly couldn’t be stopped, in the fourth quarter Brown caught a 22-yard pass for yet another TD. He only caught 5 of 6 targets for 91 yards. But, 3 of the 5 catches went for touchdowns.
Mike Evans Catches the Football with One-Hand
Although the score was Atlanta 33 to Tampa Bay 14, and there was only 1:40 left in the 3rd Quarter, Tampa WR Mike Evans showed why he’s become one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. He knew he was going to take a hit, which he did, but he still managed to rise high up into the air to catch the pass, get both feet down, and hang on to the ball. Evans did this even though the Bucs were pretty much done. That’s called having guts.
Oakland Starts Off the Season by Going for 2 Versus New Orleans
— NFL (@NFL) 11 de septiembre de 2016
Oakland had its best season in a long time. The Raiders started out their winning ways in Week 1 when head coach Jack Del Rio decided to go for the 2-point conversion and win versus the New Orleans Saints in the Super Dome. QB Derek Carr passed it to WR Michael Crabtree for the win. The Raiders went 12 and 4 in the regular season. Only an injury to Carr derailed Oakland’s Super Bowl dreams this season.
Odell Beckham Jr. Game Winner Versus Baltimore
In Week 6, the Giants desperately needed a win. NYG had lost its preceding 3 games. Without a win, even sniffing the playoffs was going to be difficult. The Giants faced a tough Baltimore Ravens team that had let Odell Beckham Jr. catch an Eli Manning pass for a TD in the third quarter. Odell couldn’t do it again, could he? Uh…yeah, he could. With the score Giants 20 and Ravens 23, Eli Manning threw a 66-yard strike to Beckham Jr. Well, it was more like a 10-yard pass and a 56-yard run, but it didn’t matter. The Ravens had given up a long TD from Eli to Odell for the second time in a half. This time, the TD pass happened with 1:24 left on the clock, and it being 4th and 1. The Giants won 27 to 23.
Chiefs Fake Punt Run for TD versus the Falcons
FAKE PUNT ALERT!
— NFL (@NFL) 4 de diciembre de 2016
In Week 13, the Kansas City Chiefs were in a dog fight with Oakland and Denver for the AFC West Division while Atlanta was trying to keep pace with Seattle for the second seed in the NFC Playoffs. Chiefs versus Falcons was an important game. It turned on Albert Wilson’s 55-yard fake punt run for a Kansas City TD. The Chiefs beat Atlanta 29 to 28 in that game.
Odell Beckham Jr. vs Josh Norman
The rivalry was particularly heated in Week 3 when the Giants hosted the rival Washington Redskins. Odell caught 7 passes for 121 yards. But, Norman and the rest of Washington’s defense kept the Odell out of the end zone. Not only that, but Washington beat the Giants 29 to 27. Here are some Odell versus Josh highlights from that Week 3 game.
Denver’s Amazing Blocked Extra Point Win over New Orleans
After review, the call of the field stands.
— NFL (@NFL) 13 de noviembre de 2016
The Saints’ Drew Brees threw an amazing 32-yard TD pass to WR Brandin Cooks with around 1:35 left in the 4th Quarter. The score was 23 to 23. All the Saints needed to do was kick the extra point to take a 24 to 23 lead. Broncos’ safety Justin Simmons leaped over the center to block the kick. Broncos’ safety Will Parks rushed it back for 2-points. Suddenly, the score was Denver 25, New Orleans 23. What’s sad for Saints’ fans is that since the score happened on an extra point try, New Orleans had to kick off to Denver. That effectively ended the game.
Aaron Rodgers’ Final 7 Games of the Regular Season
State Farm Insurance spokesperson Aaron Rodgers made an unbelievable run for the league NFL MVP in Green Bay’s final 7 regular season games. Rodgers’ TD to INT ratio in those 7 games was an unreal 18 to 0. His QB ratings were 115, 116.7, 108.9, 150.8, 87, 136.6, and 126. The 87 doesn’t look great, but so what? Aaron didn’t throw a pick in that game, and Green Bay beat their historic rivals, the Chicago Bears, 30 to 27 at Soldier Field. In Week 16, Rodgers dominated Minnesota’s defense with 347 passing yards, 4 TD passes, and a rushing TD. Check out the highlights.
Matt Ryan Dominates NFL Defenses
The NFL MVP deserved the award. Although Tom Brady proved that he’s the greatest quarterback in history in Super Bowl LI, Atlanta QB Matt Ryan was great from Week 1. It’s hard to argue with 38 TD passes to only 7 interceptions, a 69.9% completion percentage, 4,944 passing yards, a 117.1 QB rating, and a Super Bowl berth. I think his best game was in Week 9 at Tampa Bay where he threw for 344 yards when completing 73.5% of his passes. He also threw 4 TD passes in that game.
The Rams Return to L.A.
The Rams returned to Los Angeles in 2016. The season turned out to be a disaster, but in Week 2, versus the rival Seattle Seahawks, the L.A. Rams won. It was Los Angeles’s home opener. Now that the Chargers are moving up the PCH to play in Los Angeles, La La Land has gone from having no NFL teams to suddenly having two NFL teams.
Dak Prescott Becomes the Man in Big D
Dak’s emergence as a viable starting QB in Dallas is huge. The Cowboys are a young team on offense and defense. If Prescott stays healthy, his rookie season in 2016, where he completed 67.8% of his passes, and threw only 4 interceptions, could go down as one of the most important moments in Dallas Cowboys’ history. The Cowboys remain America’s Team. The NFL is stronger when the Cowboys are good. Here some of Dak’s highlights from his rookie season.
KC’s Eric Berry Returns to Atlanta to Face the Falcons
— NFL (@NFL) 4 de diciembre de 2016
The last time that Berry, an Atlanta native, was in the Athens of the South, he was there to receive chemotherapy. In Week 13, Berry returned to Atlanta to face the Falcons. He had one of his better games. Berry has come back from cancer to be one of the best safeties in the NFL. It’s impossible to not make Berry’s return to Atlanta one of the more awesome moments of the 2016 NFL Season.
Julio Jones’ 300-Yard Game
Julio had arguably the greatest game for a wide receiver in NFL history when he caught 12 of 15 targets for 300 yards and a TD. It was only Week 4. Atlanta was at 2 and 1. The Falcons were +2.5 home dogs in the Georgia Dome against the defending NFC Champion Carolina Panthers. Jones and Ryan put the NFL on notice that Atlanta was a team to be dealt with. Julio’s performance was one of the more incredible that I’ve ever seen from any single player in the NFL.
Julian Edelman Makes the Greatest Catch in NFL History
For my money, Julian Edelman’s unbelievable catch in Super Bowl LI was the greatest, most important, catch of all time. The reason is because a) it happened in a Super Bowl and b) it led to the Patriots tying the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.
Tom Brady Kneeling After Super Bowl LI
Awesome moments happen every NFL season. But only one quarterback in the history of the NFL has ever won 5 Super Bowls. That quarterback is Tom Brady. Not only has Brady won 5 Super Bowls, but Brady led his team back from being down 3 to 28 in Super Bowl LI to win his 5th Super Bowl. That’s how incredible Terrific Tom is. To me, Brady kneeling after the Patriots OT win, surrounded by media, is the most awesome, poignant, moment of the 2016 NFL Season.