NFL News & Analysis

NFL Week 7 Team of the Week & Awards

With seven weeks of NFL action in the books, the Cincinnati Bengals sit atop the AFC while Arizona Cardinals lead the NFC — just as everyone expected.

Now that the first run of PFF analysis has been finalized and made available in PFF's Premium Stats, we get to fill you in on this week’s top performers. Here, we present PFF’s Team of the Week and player awards from Week 7 of the 2021 NFL season.

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QB: Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders
RB: D’Ernest Johnson, Cleveland Browns
WR: A.J. Brown, Tennessee Titans
WR: Ja’Marr Chase, Cincinnati Bengals
TE: Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons
Flex: Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams
LT: Kolton Miller, Las Vegas Raiders
LG: Joel Bitonio, Cleveland Browns
C: Jason Kelce, Philadelphia Eagles
RG: Alex Cappa, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
RT: Michael Onwenu, New England Patriots


DI: Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams
DI: Maliek Collins, Houston Texans
Edge: Jason Pierre-Paul, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Edge: Jonathon Cooper, Denver Broncos
LB: De’Vondre Campbell, Green Bay Packers
LB: Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers
CB: Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams
CB: Rasul Douglas, Green Bay Packers
S: Kevin Byard, Tennessee Titans
S: Adrian Amos, Green Bay Packers
Flex: Joejuan Williams, New England Patriots

Co-Offensive Player of the Week & Co-Rookie of the Week: TE Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons

The 6-foot-6, 240-pound tight end has produced an elite PFF grade in each of his last two outings, and his 93.5 grade from Week 7 is one of the best marks from any player in the 2021 season.

Pitts hauled in three contested grabs, generated 4.94 yards per route run and turned five of his nine targets into a gain of 15 or more yards in Week 7. And of those 15-plus-yard receptions, four came against press coverage on the outside. To give you an idea of how rare that is, the only other rookie to have four such catches in a single game in the last decade was … Ja’Marr Chase, also in Week 7 of the 2021 season.

The rest of the league’s tight ends have only six such receptions against press out wide this season, and now the Falcons rookie has five by himself for the year.

Co-Offensive Player of the Week & Co-Rookie of the Week: WR Ja’Marr Chase, Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati looks like this year's “worst-to-first” team after handling the Ravens on the road to improve their record to 5-2 and step into first place in the AFC North. Several factors have gone into this rapid improvement, but the X-factor has been the connection between quarterback Joe Burrow and star rookie Ja’Marr Chase

The No. 5 overall pick has bolstered the Bengals’ deep passing game — a major area of weakness last year — and is fresh off his first 90.0-plus receiving grade. He hauled in five receptions of 15-plus yards for the game, and one of those was just a basic five-yard slant to move the sticks on third-and-short that Chase somehow turned into an 82-yard touchdown.

Biggest Game-Changing Moment: Ja’Marr Chase‘s 82-yard touchdown against Baltimore

This was the beginning of the end for the Baltimore Ravens in Week 7. It bolstered Cincy’s win probability from 48.5% to 73.9%, and that would only rise as the game went on.

The rookie wide receiver now has 19 explosive receptions of 15-plus yards for the season, four more than any other rookie wide receiver through the first seven weeks of a season since 2006. If he continues at this pace, Chase is bound to break many other PFF rookie records.

Defensive Player of the Week: CB Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams

The star defensive back was targeted four times on 36 coverage snaps this past Sunday, and he allowed just nine yards and zero first downs overall. He also notched two passing stops and made one of the game's biggest plays with a red-zone interception late in the fourth quarter. 

It was a fantastic play on the ball, but Aaron Donald gets the assist for the INT for being too quick for Detroit left guard Jonah Jackson and getting pressure on Jared Goff.

Ramsey has now earned two elite coverage grades this season, marking the second time in his career he accomplished that feat in a single season. Now, he’s the highest-graded corner in the NFL, though I don’t think that will surprise anyone.

Offensive Line of the Week: New England Patriots

New England’s offensive line went into their division rival’s stadium and absolutely destroyed the New York Jets’ defensive front, emerging from the contest as the highest-graded unit of Week 7.

The Pats' linemen paved lanes in the ground game, helping New England's backs to 2.9 yards before contact per attempt, the second-best mark of the week. They also surrendered just five pressures as a whole on 44 pass-block snaps for the second-lowest pressure rate allowed for the week.

Everyone contributed to this strong day up front, too, as every starting offensive lineman graded above 70.0 for the game.

Secret Superstar of the Week: CB Rasul Douglas, Green Bay Packers

Green Bay signed Douglas out of necessity just a few weeks ago because injuries had ravaged the cornerback room and they were in dire need of players who could fill in and hold their own.

Douglas had a so-so debut as a Packer in his Week 6 win over Chicago, but he provided the reliability Green Bay needed at the position this past weekend against Washington.

Douglas turned in a career-high 88.3 PFF grade against the Football Team. He was called (questionably) for one DPI penalty, but that was the only negative of the day. Douglas allowed just one catch for four yards across 39 coverage snaps while breaking up a pass and recording a passing stop. Along with that, the corner came across the field on a reverse to force a fumble:

Play of the Week: Cincinnati Bengals right guard Jackson Carman‘s big-time block

Second-round rookie Jackson Carman got off to an underwhelming start to his career, as his 40.5 PFF grade was the third-lowest mark among guards entering Week 7.

Carman had his fair share of lows in Baltimore, but his highs were enough to carry him to the highest grade of his four starts in Cincinnati. His best play of the day came when he took Brandon Williams for a 10-yard ride before tossing him to the ground, setting up a 46-yard rushing touchdown from Samaje Perine to put the game on ice:

The rookie still has a lot to work on within his game, but this showed why he ended up a top-50 pick. One of Carman’s listed strengths in the 2021 PFF NFL Draft Guide was that he “carries 330-plus pounds easily, a naturally massive dude who can still move.” The first-year guard showed that on this play. 

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