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Hawks in the NFL - Week 16

Tight End U continues their run

NFL: DEC 24 Giants at Vikings

Week 16 and Hawks showed out again. Let’s go!

T.J. Hockenson

Look - the Vikings are perhaps the weirdest team in the league. Their defense is bottom 5 in the league, Kirk Cousins alternates awesome performances with questionable ones weekly, and they win every close game in more ridiculous fashion by the week. And our man Hockenson, despite the odd drop here or there, is right in the middle of it. This week, Hock gave them everything he could in a 27-24 barn burner of a win over the New York Giants that was won on a 61-yard field goal as time expired.

Hockenson opened the scoring for the Vikings, a 12-yard strike from Cousins.

Hockenson then reeled in a second touchdown, putting the Vikings back in front early in the 4th quarter. This is a sensational catch from Hock, his third touchdown of the year with the Vikes.

Hockenson finished the wild Vikings win with 13 receptions for 109 yards and 2 touchdowns, his best game in a Vikings uniform to date. For the year, Hockenson is now at 78 receptions for 839 yards and 6 touchdowns in total between Detroit and Minnesota. One more week of this would be great - someone might have Hock as his tight end starter in fantasy and made the final next week. One more week, please!

George Kittle

Not to be outdone in the Tight End U sweepstakes is George Kittle. He’s looking like Kittle again, you guys. He and BCB (Big Cock Brock) have a legit connection that was on display for all on Saturday as the Niners won their 8th straight, a 37-20 win over Washington. Kittle finished the game with 6 receptions for 120 yards and 2 touchdowns. Here’s the first score, an easy pitch-and-catch that would been a touchdown to Kittle or Ray-Ray McCloud III, as both were wide open and in the same spot on the field. Maybe don’t let two receivers run past you, Washington defense?

Here’s the second score. Purdy rolling to his left - I’ve seen that on a Saturday before! - and finding a wide open Kittle underneath. Kittle does the rest as San Francisco slowly choked Washington out in the second half.

After some up and down games this year, Kittle is now at 52 receptions for 713 yards and 8 touchdowns. Not bad at all. His last two weeks have been especially dominant - 10 receptions, 213 yards, 4 touchdowns.

Noah Fant

Lastly, Noah Fant found himself in the touchdown column again this week, but Seattle’s season is fading fast as they lost at Kansas City, 24-10. Fant had 2 receptions for 12 yards, but he scored Seattle’s lone touchdown of the day, a 6-yard reception in garbage time that brought the score to the 24-10 final.

Anthony Nelson and Ben Niemann

In the non-tight end division, Anthony Nelson had himself a good night against the hapless Arizona Cardinals, as the nearly as hapless Bucs remain in the playoff hunt, winning 19-16 in overtime. Nelson started the game with this free run at Trace McSorley.

Nelson finished with 4 tackles and the above sack/forced fumble. On the Arizona sideline, Ben Niemann finished with 10 tackles.


Parker Hesse also got in the box score this week, finishing with 1 catch for 8 yards. In all, former Iowa tight ends caught 22 passes for 249 yards and 5 touchdowns for the week. Pretty good.

Chauncey Golston found himself in the box score in that fun-as-hell Philly-Dallas game. He deflected a late Gardner Minshew pass on Philadelphia’s final drive as Dallas held on for a 40-34 win.

Desmond King and Christian Kirksey again looked good for Houston, who eeked out a 19-14 win over Tennessee for their second win of the year. The two combined for 10 tackles, while King had 5 punt returns for 41 yards. The biggest story in this game was the start time being moved back due to windows being blown open and multiple pipe bursts in the stadium. Iowa plays in that stadium in a few days.

Broncos Corner - oohhhhhhhh boy. Wow. My brother made the executive decision to watch this on Nickelodeon for the Slimecast. GREAT decision by him as we got to laugh at Patrick Star roasting Russell Wilson. Great viewing, 10/10, would recommend. This then got better, as the Broncos fired Nathaniel Hackett on Boxing Day after their 51-14 drubbing at the hands of the Rams. Josey Jewell finished with 10 tackles and...yeah, that’s about the only fun thing to discuss from this disaster. That’s now 7 consecutive seasons without a playoff appearance by the Broncos since they won Super Bowl 50. This doesn’t get enough run - the Denver Broncos have consistently been a playoff team since their first Super Bowl team, in 1977. Between 1977 and 2015, they went to the Super Bowl 8 times and won 3. It’s been one of the most consistent teams in the league for a generation, with incredible star power at multiple positions. Now they’re on a 7-year playoff drought and that seems like an eternity. Ownership was steady under Pat Bowlen until he passed away and the family couldn’t sort it out so they sold, and now they just made perhaps the worst trade in NFL history for a guy that’s washed up. AND they paired him with a coach that they only seemed to hire because they thought they were going to get Aaron Rodgers instead of Wilson. So things are GREAT in Denver. Also temps are in the 60s there today while I’m in Iowa and we’re just scraping the low 30s. MERRY CHRISTMAS.