After Week 2 in the NFL, Here’s What We Know….I Think

1. A little home cooking and the opening of your brand new state of the art stadium on national television appears to be just what the defending NFC champs needed to get beyond their uninspired week 1 win in Chicago. But to do it against the Packers — one of few teams we all expect to be there challenging Atlanta for the conference title in January — is a little bit surprising. The defense was flying around, much like they were during the 2016 playoffs, and the Falcons run game was back after going for only 52 yards in week 1.

2. Tom Brady looked like Tom Brady — playing against the Saints’ defense has that effect on quarterbacks. But now, after injuries to Gronk, Chris Hogan, and Philip Dorsett, who’s Brady going to throw the ball to to next week?

3. Despite less than stellar numbers from Marcus Mariota in weeks 1 and 2, Tennessee’s commitment to the run game is what might keep the Titans in the AFC South hunt all year. Derrick Henry looks strong — and appears to have surpassed DeMarco Murray.

4. The Steelers offense still looks a little out of sync, but the Big Ben-Martavis Bryant connection seems on-point. What ever rift existed between the two sure looks like a thing of the past.

5. If you thought Von Miller and the Denver defense were just going to fade away, Sunday’s statement against Dallas was more of an exclamation. Denver shut down every aspect of the Cowboys’ offense.

6. Yes, the gaudy numbers that fantasy owners hoped for were the only things missing from this impressive Bucs’ win Sunday. As Jameis Winston gets more in sync with Desean Jackson, the deep threat will be explosive. He’s already in lock-step with Mike Evans.

7. A defense that totaled 6 sacks on Sunday plus a rookie RB who is in the process of sewing up the Offensive Rookie of the Year award — that’s a good combination for Andy Reid’s team.

8. With all the athletes and weapons in Carolina on the offensive side of the ball, it’s hard to fathom this unit being so inept. Add to that, Greg Olsen has a broken foot.

9. Cincinnati’s offensive woes are of historic proportions — first team in the modern era to fail to score a touchdown in the opening two home games of the season. The OC was relieved, and I’d expect Andy Dalton is up next. Start warming up A.J. McCarron.

10. Oakland’s offense is hot. Everyone talks about Derek Carr and Amari Cooper and Marshawn Lynch, but can we not forget about Michael Crabtree, who caught 3 TDs in Sunday’s win over the Jets?

11. The Saints’ defense should be ashamed of themselves. I don’t know how the franchise can make this up to Drew Brees, but wow. Gonna be a long season in NOLA.

12. It’s amazing what an exceptional defense can do for you. Just ask Seattle. The offense has done absolutely nothing this year — one TD in two home games.

13. The Eagles may have lost the game to KC, but to out-gain the Chiefs in yards and rack up 11 more first downs definitely gives Philadelphia the confidence that their offense can play anywhere, against anyone.

14. Houston needs to do more than sneak out a win against the Bengals to make me forget about a blowout loss in week 1 to the Jaguars. Let’s see how a trip to Foxboro next week suits the Texans and their rookie QB.

15. Going into the SNF game, the Green Bay’s o-line was down two tackles. Then during the game, they lose Jordy Nelson and Mike Daniels. Hard to keep pace with the Falcons when you’re missing so many critical pieces.

16. The Bills remind me of a poor man’s Minnesota team — the defense is there and capable, but the offense is utterly abysmal.

17. Hearing a lot about the rushing attack of the Ravens and their defense. Fine, but talk to me after they’ve played a couple teams other than Cincy and Cleveland.

18. After a surprisingly spry effort in week 1 against the Falcons, the Bears showed all the reasons in week 2 why we expect them to be picking in the top 3 of next spring’s NFL Draft.

19. A loss to the Redskins is not a shocker, but perhaps after his sophomore slump, Todd Gurley is back on track to being one of the league’s premier running backs.

20. It’s clear now the Vikings defense will have to carry them to however far they want to go. Sam Bradford just has to stay healthy and manage the game, offensively — which, as time goes by, should involve giving the ball to Dalvin Cook more and more regularly.

21. It took overtime for the Cardinals to beat the hapless Colts. David Johnson’s absence is only a part of the problem in the desert. Don’t try and spin this as a “great” Cardinal comeback in the 4th quarter. Stop it.

22. Washington looks like a team committed to running the ball. Nice little win in L.A. over the Rams. Hard to see this as much else.

23. I don’t think the Dolphins could have expected a much better result in their opening game of the season. Jay Cutler was efficient and Miami won across the country in L.A.

24. Dallas’s offensive line is not what it’s been and the defense is not anywhere improved from a year ago. They made Trevor Siemian look like an all-pro.

25. It’s going to be a real struggle finding nice things to say this season about the Jets. Ummm, Jermaine Kearse caught 2 TDs. There.

26. An 0-2 is not the start the Chargers had hoped for in their inaugural season back in L.A. The offense needs to run more efficiently and the defense has to make the stops it’s supposed to make. You can’t let Jay Cutler come in off the sofa and beat you in his Miami debut.

27. Jacoby Brissett wasn’t a bad as I thought he’d be — I like JB, but not in that mess that we call Indy’s offense. He did have a good thing going with Jack Doyle. No reason to think we’ll see Scott Tolzien again.

28. Nothing like throwing your rookie QB to the wolves — injury plus poor playcalling won’t make DeShone Kizer’s life any easier.

29. Blake Bortles has 17 games of 2 or more turnovers — and the Jags are 1-16 in such games. Three straight possessions Sunday resulted in a Bortles turnover. Just run Leonard Fournette every play.

30. The 49ers scored 3 points in week 1 against Carolina and in week 2, they put 9 up versus Seattle. Certainly, not the easiest of matchups, but something tells me this is something SF fans should get used to seeing.

 

Feedback is always welcome through the website in the comments box or on my Twitter feed, @brian22goodwin.

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Author: Brian Goodwin

An educator for 15 years. I have a passion for sports and a passion for writing about sports. I'm very excited to run this blog and have conversations with people about relevant topics, mostly pertaining to sports but also in all aspects of life.

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