NFL Week 10 coaching grades: Dolphins, Commanders ace tests; Rams, Raiders get low scores – USA TODAY


Week 10 featured the NFL’s first regular-season game in Germany, an overtime thriller in Buffalo, Mike McCarthy’s return to Lambeau Field, Jeff Saturday’s head coaching debut and concluded with the Commanders putting a blemish on the Eagles’ record.
There were eight, one-score games and three contests decided by three points or less. Seventeen teams have at least five wins and the Las Vegas Raiders and Houston Texans are the only teams with fewer than three wins at this point of the season.
How much of an influence did coaches have on the outcomes in Week 10? USA TODAY Sports examined the performances of NFL coaches. Here are their grades for Week 10:
Mike McDaniel and the Dolphins’ coaching staff has the team surprisingly on top of the AFC East through 10 weeks. McDaniel’s offensive scheme has Tua Tagovailoa playing the best football of his pro career.
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Tagovailoa passed for 285 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions, resulting in a 135 passer rating in Miami’s 39-17 win over Cleveland.
Opposing teams are having a difficult time covering Miami’s speedy playmakers and Tagovailoa is confidently delivering with accurate passes.
These three passes were some of the best throws of the week.
Tagovailoa’s 14-yard touchdown pass to WR Trent Sherfield was on a rope.
This was a dime to WR Jaylen Waddle on an out route.
On this play, Tagovailoa goes through his progressions and hits Waddle in stride.
In the win, Tagovailoa became just the second player in NFL history with at least 275 passing yards, three touchdown passes and a passer rating of 135-or-higher in three consecutive games, per NFL research.
A lot of credit needs to be given to the Dolphins for designing a scheme that gives Tagovailoa and the offense an opportunity to thrive.
The Giants’ game plan was to exploit Houston’s league-worst run defense. Saquon Barkley had a season-high 35 carries and the running back delivered in a major way. Barkley gashed the Texans for 152 rushing yards.
Most of Barkley’s rushing yards came on outside runs. These two carries of over 10 yards came on outside zone run calls.
The Giants ran the football 47 times for 191 yards and a touchdown in the 24-16 win. Their dominant rushing performances allowed them to possess the football for over 33 minutes.
The Bears coaching staff earned a C grade for the second consecutive week because the team put up a valiant effort in a loss.
Chicago produced 258 rushing yards in a 31-30 loss to the Detroit Lions. The Bears became the first team in NFL history to rush for at least 225 yards in five consecutive games. However, Chicago’s 1-4 in those games. The Bears, who are in the midst of a rebuild, haven’t been able to win games in large part because their defense has given up over 30 points in the past three contests and they’ve had a lack of execution late in games, which typically happens to young teams.  
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The Bears have the top rushing offense in the NFL. They have 2,017 rushing yards this season and are just the second team with at least 2,000 rushing yards in their first 10 games of a season since 1980, joining the 2019 Baltimore Ravens, per NFL research.
In Sunday’s loss, Chicago’s offensive line and tight ends created a wide-open hole on this read option. Fields found the open spaced and used his speed and vision to knife through the open area for a 67-yard touchdown.
Playing without quarterback Matthew Stafford, the Rams were booed at halftime after they were held to a meager 77 total yards in the first half, the fewest under coach Sean McVay, per the FOX broadcast.
The Rams finished 3 for 11 on third down in the 27-17 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. They were held to 190 passing yards and 66 rushing yards.
The Rams have yet to find a consistent threat on offense outside of wide receiver Cooper Kupp. Other receivers have a difficult time separating from coverage.
This John Wolford interception is a good example of a Ben Skowronek not creating enough separation. Wolford tried to deliver a ball in a tight window that was picked off by Cardinals safety Budda Baker.
Furthermore, the Rams have the worst rushing attack in the NFL. McVay hasn’t been able to generate a balanced offense with his personnel or play calling.
Week 10 showed that somehow the Raiders are more dysfunctional and unorganized than an Indianapolis Colts team with a novice head coach and first-time offensive coordinator.
Raiders wide receiver Davante Adams and quarterback Derek Carr were some of the many frustrated players after the team’s 25-20 loss to the Colts.
“I love Josh [McDaniels], I love our coaches. They’ve had nothing but success, way more success than I’ve ever had. I’m sorry for being emotional. I’m just pissed off by some of the things that a lot of us try and do, just to practice, what we put our bodies through just to sleep at night. For that to be the result of all that effort pisses me off,” Carr said postgame. “It pisses a lot of guys off. It’s hard knowing what some guys are doing. Like I said, just to practice, what they’re putting in their body just to sleep at night, just so we can be there for each other. I wish everybody in that room felt the same way about this place. As a leader that pisses me off, if I’m being honest.”
The Raiders were booed by their home fans after Sunday’s loss. Las Vegas has lost three straight games. They are struggling in all three phases.
Ron Rivera and the Commanders coaching staff came into Monday night with a really good game plan, and the team executed it at a high level. The Commanders pulled off the upset victory and snapped the Eagles undefeated recorded by dominating time of possession and imposingtheir will running the football. Washington possessed the football for over 40 minutes and ran the ball a whopping 49 times for 152 yards. The Commanders had the Eagles off balance and out of rhythm for most of the night.
The Bucs inexplicably called a trick play that was designed for running back Leonard Fournette to throw a pass to a 45-year-old Tom Brady. The play predictably ended in a disastrous interception.
Seahawks cornerback Tariq Woolen might not have an easier interception in his career. He’ll probably never have to cover a 45-year-old quarterback running a fade route again. That much is certain.
Luckily for the Bucs, the interception didn’t cost them the game in Germany. But Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich definitely should delete that trick play from the playbook.
Facing a fourth-and-3 from the Green Bay 35-yard line in overtime, Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy elected to go for it instead of kicking a 53-yard field goal. The decision proved to be costly as the Cowboys failed to convert on fourth down.
The Packers took over possession, and six plays later connected on a game-winning 28-yard field goal in overtime.
Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Tyler Dragon on Twitter @TheTylerDragon.

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