Highlighting the most important, bizarre and historic stats from this week in the NFL.
Numbers and statistics are a huge part of measuring performance and marking milestones in the NFL. With that in mind, Athlon Sports rounded up the most intriguing, important, historic and bizarre stats from Week 4 of the season.
There have now only been two NFL regular season games without any punts after Green Bay and Chicago combined to keep their punters off the field in Week 4. The other came Sept. 13, 1992 when Buffalo and San Francisco did not punt in a game that featured 1,118 yards of total offense combined. An AFC Divisional matchup between Kansas City and Indianapolis (2004) is the only playoff game with zero punts.
J.J. Watt's 80-yard interception return for a score against Buffalo made him the first player in NFL history with 35-plus sacks, a receiving touchdown (Week 2 this year) and an interception touchdown return in his first four seasons.
Indianapolis' quarterback Andrew Luck completed 70.7 percent of his passes (29 of 41) for 393 yards with four touchdowns and one interception for a 123.3 passer rating in the Colts’ Week 4 win over Tennessee. Luck, who last week completed 79.5 percent of his passes for 370 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 140.4 rating, is the first player in NFL history to post consecutive games with at least 370 passing yards, four or more touchdown passes, a completion percentage above 70 percent and one or no interceptions.
With a punt return for a touchdown (Darren Sproles), a blocked punt return for a touchdown (Brad Smith) and an interception return for a touchdown (Malcolm Jenkins) against San Francisco Sunday, Philadelphia became just the second team in NFL history to pull off such a trifecta. In NFL history, teams that had three returns for TDs in a game were 71-1-1; the Eagles lost 26-21.
New Orleans was shutout in the first half for just the third time (2007, 2011) under head coach Sean Payton when Dallas took a 24-0 lead into halftime Sunday night. The Cowboys won 38-17.
Dallas' DeMarco Murray became the fourth running back in NFL history with 100+ rushing yards and 1+ rushing touchdown in each of the team's first four games, and the first since Dallas' Emmitt Smith did so in 1995. Jim Brown (1958) and O.J. Simpson (1975) are the other two. Brown stretched the streak to six games, while Simpson pushed it to five.
Rookie quarterbacks Blake Bortles (Jacksonville) and Teddy Bridgewater (Minnesota) made their first NFL start in Week 4. Along with Derek Carr (Oakland), three rookies have started at quarterback this season. It marks the fourth consecutive season (2011-14) in which at least three rookies started at quarterback in a September game. That is the longest such streak in the Super Bowl era.
With their 41-17 victory against Tennessee in Week 4, the Indianapolis Colts have won eight consecutive games within the AFC South. It is the longest active streak in the NFL.
Over Philadelphia's first nine possessions of its Week 4 game against San Francisco, the Eagles collected just five first downs on 37 plays. They picked up six first downs on 15 plays on their second-to-last drive of the day, which was halted on a fourth-and-goal pass play from the 2 for a potential game-winning TD pass. Philly finished with 213 total yards of offense, which is the second lowest under Chip Kelly, and 22 rushing yards, which is the lowest by any team this season entering Monday night's game.
Entering Week 4, Philadelphia was the best second-half team in the league with a +50-point differential while San Francisco was the worst at -49, including zero points in the fourth quarter. The 49ers outscored the Eagles 13-0 in the second half, including three points in the fourth quarter.
Since opening up with a 17-0 halftime lead in Week 1 against Philadelphia, Jacksonville has been outscored 152-41. The 0-4 Jaguars have scored 21 of those points in the first half.
With Green Bay's 38-17 win against Chicago in Week 4, the Packers posted the franchise's 700th regular-season win. They joined the Bears as the only two franchises to achieve 700 wins. Chicago has 732.
Aaron Rodgers needed the fewest attempts in NFL history to reach 25,000 passing yards when he accomplished the feat in Week 4. He hit the mark in 3,065 attempts, besting Kurt Warner's 3,076.
Baltimore's Steve Smith had seven catches for 139 yards and two touchdowns against Carolina, his old team, in Week 4. The 429 yards he has this season are the most ever by a 35+ year-old player through the first four games of the season. In addition, Smith is the Panthers' all-time leading receiver (12,197) and became the second player in NFL history to have 100+ receiving yards in his first game against a franchise for which he had 10,000+ yards. He joined Torry Holt.