Five wildest moments from NFL Week 8: Halloween hat tricks and an ending you need to see to believe

It’s hard to believe that we are about halfway through the 2022 NFL regular season. In Week 8, Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle both exploded for 100-plus yards receiving for the Miami Dolphins, Derrick Henry broke the Tennessee Titans‘ franchise record for touchdowns and the New Orleans Saints blasted the Las Vegas Raiders 24-0, despite being underdogs. All wild events, but all did not make our list of top-five wildest moments from NFL Sunday. 

Let’s recap what was another incredibly entertaining week in the NFL. Here are the five wildest things we saw on Sunday in Week 8:

5. Zach Wilson hands out Halloween candy

As a quarterback, if you’re throwing the ball away, make sure you throw the ball away

Down nine points to the New England Patriots late in the third quarter, the New York Jets needed to get something going. Jets QB Zach Wilson rolled out to the right, and looked downfield trying to find an open receiver. With the pressure closing in, he decided to throw the ball away — but failed in doing so. 

Instead, Wilson threw it to veteran defensive back Devin McCourty. It was the second of Wilson’s three interceptions on the day, as turnovers were a big reason why the Jets had their four-game win streak snapped. 

It’s great to see how the Chicago Bears offense has taken off following its bye. If I were to tell you a month ago that Chicago would rack up 370-plus yards of total offense against the Patriots and Dallas Cowboys in back-to-back weeks, you would have laughed at me. Even with Chicago moving the ball better, the Bears still fell to the Cowboys on Sunday, 49-29.

There was a wild moment in the third quarter, when Bears running back David Montgomery fumbled. Defensive Player of the Year candidate Micah Parsons recovered the loose ball, jumping on the pigskin and shielding it with his body. At that point, all that had to happen for the play to come to an end was for Parsons to be touched down by a member of the Bears. Bears QB Justin Fields was running in his direction, but instead of touching Parsons, he jumped over him!

Parsons, realizing he had not been touched, got up and ran the fumble back for a 36-yard touchdown! I guess Fields still thought he was playing by college football rules. 

“It’s my fault for just hopping over him,” Fields said after the game, per Pro Football Talk. “I should have tackled him. I can’t remember the last time I made a tackle. So, I’ve just got to be aware in that situation and make sure he’s down.”

3. Touchdown hat tricks

There were plenty of fantasy football points scored Sunday, and if you are an owner of A.J. Brown, Alvin Kamara or Christian McCaffrey, then you woke up on Monday very happy. 

Kamara scored three touchdowns on Sunday vs. the Raiders for the hat trick, while racking up 158 scrimmage yards. Kamara now has six career games with three or more touchdowns. That’s the same amount of three-plus TD games as Edgerrin James, Walter Payton and Adrian Peterson had in their NFL careers.

As for Brown and McCaffrey, both players are playing for new teams this season and absolutely thriving. Brown caught three, count ’em, THREE touchdowns in the first half Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers for the hat trick. With his third, Brown couldn’t help but taunt the helpless defensive backs. 

Brown’s touchdown catches of 39, 27, and 29 yards made him the first Eagle to record three touchdown catches of 25-plus yards in a game since Ben Hawkins did so in 1969. Through seven games, Brown has 39 catches for 659 yards and five touchdowns. 

As for McCaffrey, he registered a different kind of hat trick. In the San Francisco 49ers‘ 31-14 victory over the Los Angeles Rams, McCaffrey became the first player since 2005 to throw, rush and catch a touchdown in a single game. His throwing and receiving touchdowns were especially impressive. 

Heinicke has been a fan favorite in D.C. for some time now, but he’s quickly becoming a fan favorite outside of Washington. The former Old Dominion star took down Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers last week, and then led a game-winning drive against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday.

The Washington Commanders were down nine points with five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. After Washington forced an Indianapolis punt following a successful Commanders field goal to trim the deficit to six, Heinicke and Co. took over with 2:39 remaining. The Commanders’ commander led the offense 89 yards down the field on nine plays, and rushed in the game-winning score himself with just 22 seconds remaining.

The drive was highlighted by this play, as Terry McLaurin, better known as “Scary Terry,” came down with a 50/50 ball against Pro Bowl cornerback Stephon Gilmore

What’s sweet is that McLaurin is from Indy, so he got up after the catch and let everyone know that this is his city. 

If you didn’t see this, then settle in. There was no doubt this was going to be No. 1 on our list of wildest moments from Sunday. Somehow, after firing their head coach, trading their star running back away and going to their third-string quarterback, the Panthers have found some juice. Carolina racked up 478 yards of total offense against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, but fell in a heartbreaking way.

After the Falcons extended their lead to six points with a late field goal, the Panthers took over with just 36 seconds remaining. Three plays into the possession, PJ Walker hit a streaking D.J. Moore down the field for what was the game-winning touchdown — a 62-yard Hail Mary. Except, it wasn’t game-winning. 

Moore was so excited that he ripped his helmet off in celebration, which drew an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. That in turn pushed the extra point back to a 48-yard try. The touchdown tied the game, but the Eddy Pineiro extra point could win it. Instead, he missed wide left.

Both Moore and Pineiro were sick with how regulation ended, but there was still overtime to right the late-game wrongs. The Falcons got the ball first, but Marcus Mariota threw an interception to C.J. Henderson five plays into the possession. Carolina took over at the Atlanta 20-yard line and needed just a field goal to win. Automatic, right?

No.

After this miss, the Falcons took over with all the momentum. The offense went 55 yards down the field, and Younghoe Koo hit the 41-yard game-winning field goal. The Panthers would have been in first place in the NFC South with a win. Instead, they suffered a brutal loss, and now have the worst record in the division.

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