After watching the Week 11 games, Scouts Inc. shares its 10 key observations:
1. A big step forward for Matthew Stafford: A down-to-the-wire victory over the hapless Browns doesn't mean much in the grand scheme, but watching Lions QB Matthew Stafford pull out the victory despite being in obvious pain from a shoulder injury was exactly what you want to see from a first-year franchise quarterback. The Lions lost the time-of-possession battle by a substantial margin, but Stafford made plenty of big-time throws on his way to 422 yards and five touchdowns. The trio of RB Kevin Smith, WR Calvin Johnson and TE Brandon Pettigrew accounted for 337 yards and three touchdowns.
2. Steelers find a way to lose: Jamaal Charles returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown, which amazingly marks eight straight games in which the Steelers have allowed a fumble, interception or kick return for a touchdown. Obviously this is a major problem. But they also played a very sloppy game overall and could never separate themselves on the scoreboard in the overtime loss. QB Ben Roethlisberger, who passed for nearly 400 yards with only 10 incompletions, threw the ball very well after a down game against the Bengals last week. The Chiefs deserve credit for playing very hard until the end, but Pittsburgh's mistakes made this game much closer than it should have been.