Former Bears Week 10: Tavecchio, Jordan stake their claim

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Giorgio Tavecchio

The new and improved Atlanta Falcons placekicker has finally found a home in Georgia after frequenting several other practice squads and backup roles throughout the early stages of his career. Going undrafted in 2012, Tavecchio had to wait five years to see out his first full season with the Oakland Raiders, only to be released by the team last season.

Tavecchio showed up in Atlanta last month after starting kicker Matt Bryant fell to injury, instantly becoming the starter in Week 7. Since then, he has made every one of his 13 field goal and extra point attempts. Although his efforts weren’t enough last Sunday after a 28-16 loss in Cleveland, Tavecchio’s dependency will continue to better Atlanta’s chances of making the playoffs for the third-straight year.

 

Cameron Jordan

Jordan is continuing his dominance over opposing offensive lines, earning another sack in the New Orleans Saints’ 51-14 rout of the Cincinnati Bengals. Even though the Saints captain has seen a slight dip in form from last season, Jordan remains an integral part of the league’s leading rushing defense.

He comes up against defending champion Philadelphia Eagles in Week 11, a team that ranks in the middle of total offense and defense this season. Jordan has three sacks and 10 tackles in two career games against the Eagles, and he hopes to maintain that same production as his team looks for a first-round bye in the playoffs.

 

Jared Goff

It was only a matter of time before Goff entered the MVP conversation this season. He threw for a customary 318 yards, completing 28 of 39 attempts for two touchdowns to lead his Los Angeles Rams to victory against the Seattle Seahawks.

Goff is second in total passing yards this season, narrowly behind Sunday opponent quarterback Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs. With two of the best passers in the league on hand, a low-scoring game is almost certainly out of the question. Kansas City’s defense ranks 31st in yards allowed, while the once-threatening Rams defense has allowed at least 27 points in each of its last three games.

 

Aaron Rodgers

His name is Aaron Rodgers, and he wins when he wants. The 4-4-1 Packers bulldozed through the Miami Dolphins 31-12 in Week 10 after rushing for nearly 200 yards, tallying six sacks and throwing two touchdown passes. Rodgers didn’t break 200 passing yards and was still able to lead his team to victory, highlighting Green Bay’s successes on defense and in the run game.

Although the Dolphins were a less than formidable opponent, the Packers will use this game as a launchpad to try and salvage their season. Rodgers travels to Seattle to play the Seahawks tonight for the ninth time in his career. With a win, Green Bay could put serious pressure on its division rivals in the NFC North, the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears, as the season nears its end.

Spencer Golanka writes for Bear Bytes, the Daily Californian’s sports blog. Contact him at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at @sgolanka.