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Wednesday, November 3, 2010
How I See It: AFC East Stock Watch

By Tim Graham

NFC Stock Watch: East | West | North | South AFC: East | West | North | South

FALLING

1. Jets' receiving corps: A headline Monday in the New York Post read "Receivers drop dead." Drops aren't an official stat, but reports had the Jets dropping anywhere from six to nine of Mark Sanchez's passes in a 9-0 home loss to the Packers. Both of Sanchez's interceptions were accurate throws defenders simply wrestled away from Jets receivers. The usually sure-handed Jerricho Cotchery and Santonio Holmes had particularly rough afternoons with multiple drops.

2. Dolphins' offense: The Dolphins' offense continues to struggle when it comes to the all-important touchdown. They have scored 10. Only the lowly Panthers have fewer. The Dolphins have scored just one touchdown in four of their seven games. Running backs Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams have combined for two touchdowns all year.

3. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Bills quarterback: Fitzpatrick last week was approaching cult hero status in Western New York with a gaudy passer rating surpassed only by Peyton Manning. Fitzpatrick's star waned along with his stats in Sunday's 13-10 loss to the Chiefs. He was decent, but didn't nearly play to the level of a desperate fan base's throbbing optimism. Fitzpatrick threw a bad interception at the end of regulation and was flagged for intentional grounding on third down from the Chiefs' 43-yard line in overtime.

RISING

Carpenter
Dan Carpenter has connected on 13 consecutive field goals.
1. Patriots' offensive line: In the previous three games, Tom Brady was sacked 10 times, and New England's running backs averaged an uninspiring 3.4 yards a carry. In Sunday's victory over the Vikings, Brady didn't get sacked once. BenJarvus Green-Ellis averaged 6.6 yards a carry and became the first player in eight years to rush for more than 100 yards in a half against the Vikings. Perhaps even more significant, Pro Bowl left guard Logan Mankins ended a contract squabble and reported for work Tuesday. A 6-1 team got even better.

2. Dan Carpenter, Dolphins kicker: Offensive struggles have been a boon for Carpenter's productivity. He became the fourth kicker in NFL history to kick at least five field goals in consecutive weeks. Carpenter has made 13 straight field goals. He ranks third in scoring even though he has only 11 extra points. The other three kickers in the top four have converted at least 21 extra points.

3. Steve Johnson, Bills receiver: With at least one touchdown in five straight games, the 2008 seventh-round draft choice tied a club record held by Elbert Dubenion, Eric Moulds and Lee Evans. Johnson's six touchdown receptions are tied for sixth in the NFL. He also has caught at least five passes in three straight games.