After a College Football Saturday of upsets and close calls, Week 1 of the NFL followed suit. There were fantasy blunders (Devonta Smith cough…cough) and some pleasant fantasy surprises (you my boy Clyde-Edwards Helaire). Without further ado, let’s dive in to what stood out after Week 1:
– I knew the Bills were going to be good. The Super Bowl hype is warranted, but I did not see them going into LA and breaking the Rams like a fold up plastic table from the top ropes. They tossed the Rams aside like the celery that comes with a wing plate. Josh Allen is the new league darling and you are lying to yourself if you think there is a better QB out there. Stefon Diggs is a premiere receiver and they appear to have found a gem in Gabriel Davis. This team is not going anywhere anytime soon.
– On the other side, the Rams play was a little concerning. I thought the addition of Allen Robinson would be huge for this team but at least in Week 1 that was not the case. Also, Cam Akers not getting action was confusing. It’s just Week , and this division appears weaker than anticipated, but Matt Stafford is going to have to elevate this team if they are going to replicate their success from last year.
– How ‘bout them Cowboys? Yeesh. Dak did not look himself against the formidable Bucs’ defense. Also, shame on the fans that booed and threw trash at this man when he went to the locker room to be examined. If this happened in Philly it would have been the center of sports talk everywhere and fuel to the lazy narrative that the Santa haters are at it again. Sorry…got sidetracked. Point the finger at the man that did little to improve this team in the offseason, Jerry “Gergich” Jones.
– As much as I enjoy injecting my veins to the tears of Cowboys fans it is not all doom and gloom for this team. This division can still be had. Carson Wentz had his ups on Sunday so you know a crash back to earth is imminent. The Giants offense will need to run for 200 yards every game to have a chance and the Eagles defense somehow looks worse than last year. Every QB in this division has question marks so Cooper Rush fits right in with this group.
– I also had my doubts with this Bucs team. Shame on me for discounting Tom Brady…again. The defense looks like one of the best in the league and there is no shortage of receiving options in this offense even with Chris Godwin on the shelf. Also, Leonard Fournette is a scary man to tackle when he runs with purpose. The last ride of Tom Brady and his immortals appears to be in full swing.
– How about that Lions/Eagles game? Ford Field was rocking and the Lions jumped on the Eagles early. They look much improved and suddenly this division doesn’t look as daunting. D’eandre Swift was all over the field this game and Jared Goff showed he can exploit bad defense. Dan Campbell is not a moral victory kind of guy but he has to be pleased with their effort.
– For the Eagles, I was impressed with Jalen Hurts and AJ Brown. Hurts’ legs gave the Lions fits but he also made some big throws. AJ Brown looked like 2004 Terrell Owens in his first game. They also ran the ball well with all three running backs on the depth chart scoring TDs. The defense was supposed to be a strength for this team and they were torched. They will need to clean it up this week with the Vikings coming to town.
– Da Bears beating the Niners was really eye-opening. Trey Lance (in less than ideal conditions) did not play well against a Chicago team that might win five games. Jimmy G waiting in the wings will not make things easier on the North Dakota State product. Credit to the Bears though. Justin Fields beating a playoff caliber team can only help his confidence.
– The Bengals-Steelers game was the most entertaining of the weekend. So much back-and-forth but also so many turnovers by Joe Burrow. He’ll play a tough defense in Dallas next weekend. The good news is he will have the task of out-scoring Cooper Rush. The Steelers meanwhile may be better than I originally thought. Trubisky with the answer after the disrespect from Will last episode.
– Speaking of Will, better get his Dolphins in here before he complains. Great start to their season. Big plays from Waddle and Hill and the defense shut down the Patriots offense for the most part. They have the Bills in their division, but this team can make some noise if Tua takes the next step.
– Lastly, I was surprised by the cold reception the Seahawks gave Russell Wilson in his return to Seattle. You know…the QB that delivered your only SB win and one of the biggest role models in the NFL. You stay classy, Seattle. I will say though kudos to Geno Smith. Not an easy thing to replace a legend but he played his best game as a professional. The Broncos will look back a lot from this game and cringe with all the missed opportunities but with Wilson they will be in the playoff hunt.
See you guys and gals in Week Two!