The Payments had their finest season of the century final 12 months. A 9-7 file allowed them to sneak into the playoffs for the primary time since 1999, ending the longest drought in main North American sports activities.
The one stumble was a weird episode in the midst of the season after they abruptly benched their beginning quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, and went with the rookie Nathan Peterman, who promptly threw 5 interceptions within the first half.
So it got here as a shock when the Payments traded Taylor after the season, and it was an utter shock after they introduced that their starter this 12 months … can be Nathan Peterman.
It was a kind of strikes that each informal fan and sports activities radio caller mentioned was a horrible choice. However generally informal followers and sports activities radio callers are completely proper.
Peterman was atrocious once more on Sunday, finishing 5 of 18 passes for 24 yards and a couple of interceptions. And the Payments, a playoff group final season, misplaced to the Baltimore Ravens, 47-Three.
In his horrific sport final season, Peterman had an adjusted yards per cross determine of minus-11.36, the worst by any quarterback all 12 months. On Sunday, he was higher, type of, posting a minus-Three.67. However that was nonetheless simply the worst of the week within the N.F.L.
The detrimental quantity means, in principle, the Payments would have been higher off if Peterman had merely taken a knee on each passing down.
By the N.F.L.’s quarterback score system, Peterman was truly worse on Sunday, dropping from 17.9 in his 2017 debacle to the minimal rating, Zero.
Within the third quarter, trailing by 40-Zero, Payments Coach Sean McDermott lastly gave up on the most recent Peterman experiment and benched him for the rookie Josh Allen, who was a bit of higher, in opposition to largely reserve Ravens: 6 for 15 for 74 yards. Allen’s adjusted yards per cross determine, whereas not spectacular, was at the very least a optimistic quantity: four.93.
The issue for the Payments and their followers are these are the group’s solely choices; Buffalo traded A.J. McCarron to the Raiders on Sept. 1. (Right here’s the compulsory reminder that Colin Kaepernick stays obtainable.)
“I’m going to take a look at every thing,” McDermott mentioned of the quarterback scenario after the sport. “It’s too early to go a method or one other.”
Wanting on the different finish of the quarterback desk, the perfect efficiency of the week got here from an unlikely supply: Ryan Fitzpatrick threw 4 landing passes and posted a 17.75 adjusted yards per try determine for the Buccaneers. That’s the identical Fitzpatrick who was the Payments starter from 2009 to 2012.
So what occurred to the Payments on Sunday? Whereas Peterman was forgettable, he mustn’t get all of the blame for a 44-point loss. The offensive line, which had a number of newcomers, supplied him with little time. His receiving corps was shaky. (The Payments regarded like they might have used Deonte Thompson, who left as a free agent for the Cowboys.)
A working sport? LeSean McCoy had 22 yards on seven carries. The Payments had 10 penalties for 100 yards. And the secondary, which had been thought of a energy, was burned repeatedly. Vontae Davis, a projected starter at cornerback, was a scratch, apparently a wholesome one.
Subsequent up for the Payments is a house sport in opposition to the Chargers. The Payments are 7½-point underdogs, the most important margin for any dwelling group subsequent week. It might be an extended season.