Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/17/14
No passing of the torch here: just a handshake Some things never change, but a lot of things do. There was not a passing of the torch from Tom Brady to Andrew Luck on Sunday, as the Patriots dominated the Colts in every sense of the word.  The Pats’ 59-24 stomping of Indianapolis showed the NFL that Foxboro is still not a place any team wants to travel come January. But it was the Patriots’ defense as opposed to their offense that made a statement in this game, returning two Luck interceptions for touchdowns. The Patriots are a contender once again; that hasn’t changed.  But several contenders find themselves in jeopardy because of a change at quarterback. The Steelers, Bears, 49ers, and Eagles all suffered injuries to their starting QBs, and it could spell disaster for all of them. Or will it? Backup QB Colin Kaepernick filled in for a concussed Alex Smith on Monday night against Chicago and ran up the score on that formidable Bears defense.  Kaepernick led his team on a 32-7 romp of Chicago, prompting head coach Jim Harbaugh to say the 49ers will start “the hot hand” at QB. Meanwhile, across from Kaepernick, Bears backup Jason Campbell struggled mightily, throwing for just 107 yards.  Campbell also threw two interceptions and was sacked six times. 5.5 of those sacks came courtesy of Aldon Smith, a Monday Night Football record. The fill-ins for the Steelers and Eagles were much more Campbell than Kaepernick.  Byron Leftwich, playing for an injured Ben Roethlisberger, came out with guns blazing but sputtered in the end. Leftwich began the game by leading the Steelers on a two-play touchdown drive that was capped off by his own 31-yard touchdown scamper. And that was about all Pittsburgh got from Leftwich, who was able to put only three more points on the board in a 10-13 loss to the Ravens.  Leftwich not only lost the game, but suffered broken ribs to boot.  He likely won’t play on Sunday for the Steelers, who now call on veteran Charlie Batch to keep their postseason hopes alive. In Philadelphia, the fans finally got what they wanted in QB Nick Foles.  After weeks of crying for Michael Vick to be benched, I’m sure Eagles fans are eating their words now.  Foles got his first NFL start and fell flat on his face in a 31-6 drubbing at the hands of the Washington Redskins.  The Eagles are now the cellar dwellers in the NFC East at 3-7. One quarterback changed his play in a dramatic way this week, throwing for the second-most yards in a game in NFL history.  That quarterback, Houston’s Matt Schaub, hadn’t thrown for 300 yards in a game all season until he chucked for 527 yards and five scores against Jacksonville this week.  Schaub got more than a little help from his star wideout Andre Johnson, who reeled in 15 of Schaub’s passes for a whopping 273 yards.  Johnson was the hero of the game, taking a screen pass 48 yards for the game-winning score in extra time.  Johnson’s 273 yards were good for the 9th-best game all time in terms of yardage. Schaub also became the only NFL quarterback with multiple games of 497 yards or more. Schaub and Johnson’s heroics lifted the Texans past the Jaguars, running their record to 9-1. Also improving to 9-1 were the Atlanta Falcons, who, like the Texans, were tested by a lesser team.  Arizona gave Atlanta a good fight, but the Falcons overcame five Matt Ryan interceptions to win 23-19. Change continues to take over the NFL, bringing about questions of playoffs, home-field advantage, and Super Bowl runs. Can the Bears win without Jay Cutler?  Can the Steelers do so without Ben Roethlisberger? Even with injuries, are the Ravens a contender? The Texans and Falcons are the best teams in their respective conference in terms of record.  Are they contenders or pretenders? Where will Andy Reid coach next year?  What about Sean Payton?  It certainly seems Reid will be ushered out of Philly, but will Payton leave New Orleans?  Rumor has it that Jerry Jones wants to fill a dump truck with hundreds and drive it over to Payton’s house. Only time, and not my speculation, can answer these pressing questions. I’ll only offer this bit of advice I once heard. “Times, they are a-changin.”   Follow me on twitter @ScottPeceny
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Larry Bird jokes about pose of Dominique Wilkins’ statue

Barry Switzer urged Cowboys to draft Murray with great quote

SF Giants file brief in support of gay marriage to Supreme Court

Jay Cutler available to teams in trade

Brian Hoyer praises Johnny Manziel for checking into rehab

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Dockett: I would have signed with Cardinals for less money

Report: Darrelle Revis' decision to come down to Patriots, Jets

Maurice Jones-Drew announces his retirement from NFL

Ndamukong Suh is biggest prize, risk in free agency

Associated Press will have 'robots' writing game stories

Jaworski on Winston: 'I would not take him at that No. 1 pick'

WATCH: Craig Sager emotional in warm welcome back to TNT

Likeliest landing spots for Ndamukong Suh

Tigers pitcher Alfredo Simon drives a chrome Mercedes

WATCH: Ronda Rousey breaks guy's ribs who doubts her ability

Michelle Beadle’s campaign to be cast in ‘Sharknado 3′ pays off

Ten teams who have tightened the belt

Dodgers will have a tough time dumping Andre Ethier

Brian Cashman: Derek Jeter should be final Yankees captain

Tom Brady, Rory McIlroy to play round at Augusta National

No one knows who will win the 2014-15 NBA MVP

Giants TE on plane that slid off runway in New York

TSN to stop airing tweets after trade deadline debacle

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Larry Bird trash talks Dominique Wilkins’ statue

Likeliest landing spots for Suh

Jay Cutler available to teams in trade

Ronda Rousey breaks guy's ribs

Ten teams who have tightened the belt

Mayweather waited for Pacquiao to get old, right?

Maurice Jones-Drew announces his retirement from NFL

Ndamukong Suh is biggest prize, risk in free agency

AP will have 'robots' writing game stories

Manning officially returning to Broncos

No one knows who will win the MVP

Pop rips notion of NBA Finals in July

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.