The wait is finally over. After living off of the NFL top ten and Total Access since April’s draft, real football has returned. The first week showed us many things, mainly that the preseason means NOTHING.
Minnesota, picked by many as a Super Bowl Contender, was edged by the Saints 14-9 in a dud. The defending champions’ defense looked great, and kept Adrian Peterson off of the scoreboard. Favre looked atrocious, and was clearly out of sync with his receivers. Could have used a little training camp, eh, Brett?
Detroit got jobbed out of a last-second win against Chicago. Calvin Johnson clearly pulled in what should have been the game-winning catch with under a minute to go. Last I checked, both feet and a rear end in the end zone with full possession of the ball is a touchdown. Cutler looked good after recovering from an early pick. Matt Forte absolutely blew up, and I envy anyone who picked him up in their fantasy leagues.
New England’s offense was as dynamic as ever in a contest in which Cincinnati decided not to play until the second half. It was good to see Wes Welker coming back full steam from the knee injury he suffered in week 17 of last season. He is the epitome of how far effort and smarts will take you in the league. Batman and Robin (TO and Ochocinco) looked pretty good in the second half, but the Bengals had better be ready next week when the Ravens come to town.
Miami sneaked past Buffalo in one of the most boring games I have seen in years. Brandon Marshall looked great, but was held in check by a much-improved Buffalo defense. Miami’s front seven, namely Karlos Dansby, lived in the backfield all game long. Everyone wants to throw Trent Edwards under the bus, but what can you expect from an offense with arguably the two worst tackles in the league?
Tennessee looks like the real deal. Chris Johnson backed up his mouth by shredding Oakland’s defense. Vince Young was very efficient in the first act of a make or break year for him. Oakland gets blown out on opening day? Yeah, I was not shocked, either.
The Giants turned the ball over four times, but, luckily, still managed to win the turnover battle en route to a 30-20 victory over Carolina. Eli Manning continued his Jekyll and Hyde ways by throwing three touchdowns, all to Hakeem Nicks, and three interceptions.
The G men will need to clean it up in order to keep pace in the NFC East.
Pittsburgh nudged past Atlanta in battle of the kickers. Dennis Dixon managed to not give the game away, and was reasonably efficient; however, there is no doubt Steeler fans are yearning for everybody’s favorite sex offender, Big Ben, to return. Troy Polamalu is the best defensive player in the league…period.
In the battle of probable top five picks, Tampa Bay rallied to take down the Browns. Josh Freeman is a franchise quarterback for the Bucs, while Jake Delhomme…not so much. The Cajun veteran threw two picks, an improvement over the four he threw last season in week one.
Jacksonville took the first step to saving Jack Del Rio’s job in a 24-17 win over Denver. David Garrard looked like he did two years ago, throwing three touchdowns and no picks. My favorite partier, Kyle Orton, put up fairly good numbers in the loss. The best part about Orton’s respectable performance is that hopefully it will quell all the idiots who have been clamoring for Tim Tebow. How can you lead a team if you are abstinent?
Houston came through with an important win in franchise history. Though it is only week one, the convincing win over the dreaded Colts should be the push in the rear this team needs to contend for a wild card. A tip of the cap to anyone who picked up Arian Foster in their fantasy leagues, he had a day and a half.
Sam Bradford was awfully busy in his first NFL start, throwing the rock an astounding 55 times. Bradford struggled, throwing three picks and averaging just 4.6 yards per attempt. Derek Anderson was quiet most of the day, but stepped up late by connecting with Larry Fitzgerald to win it.
Seattle’s blowout of the 49ers was the biggest surprise in week one. I thought San Francisco would cruise through a very weak NFC West. Pete Carroll’s second go round in the NFL looks like it could be promising. A performance like this makes me wonder if Mike Singletary dropped his drawers again in the locker room.
Philadelphia’s 27-20 loss to the Packers stirred up more controversy than Clinton’s affair in the oval office. Thousands of Birds fans are pleading for Michael Vick to be given the keys to the offense after a flashy performance in relief of Kevin Kolb. In my opinion, Andy Reid did the right thing by pledging his allegiance to Kolb after the game.
Washington took advantage of one of the worst decisions in a long time by Wade Phillips. Instead of kneeling on the ball to end the half, the boys tried a swing pass to Tashard Choice, who promptly coughed up the ball and watched helplessly as DeAngelo Hall raced down the sideline. My biggest question is why Marion Barber and Felix Jones each were only given the ball eight times?
The Jets fell flat on their collective face on Monday Night Football. They committed an astounding 14 penalties and picked up only eight first downs. Anybody who watched Hard Knocks has to be dying to hear what Rex Ryan had to say during and after the game.
Kansas City finished off week one with a huge upset for the Chargers. The Chiefs defense looked wonderful and very well coached. The Chiefs also have a bonafied playmaker in rookie Dexter McCluster, that man can motor! Trent Dilfer did his best from the booth to ruin a good game.