NFL WEEK 2: What we learned
After a few shocks in week one of the NFL regular season, 14 favourites were victorious in week two. There were some epic battle's across the league but what did we learn from the second week of action?
The Browns are not done, just yet-
Many were calling for Baker Mayfield's career as the Cleveland Browns starting QB to be ended if the Browns couldn't get past the Bengals on Thursday night football. They did win however, a score of 35-30, capped an entertaining battle. The main highlight was Mayfield's touchdown pass to Odell Beckham Jr. If that combo can continue to connect throughout the season, the Browns might just have a playoff shot.
The Atlanta Falcons have a flair for the dramatic...in a bad way-
A franchise that was already nearly synonymous with a dubious set of numbers, 28-3, added a new score for their team’s fans to loathe: 29-10. That was where things stood at halftime on Sunday before a truly epic second-half collapse against the Dallas Cowboys, who won, 40-39. Dallas scored on five of the team’s six second-half possessions, but still needed a bit of a miracle in the form of an onside kick in the game’s final two minutes that was recovered by the Cowboys despite the ball rolling right past multiple Falcons players on its way to Dallas’ C.J. Goodwin.
Cam Newton is not quite automatic at the goal line-
The Patriots’ new quarterback was lined up on the 1-yard line, trailing by 5 with just seconds to play, and everyone knew he was going to run. He already had 397 passing yards, 47 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns in the game, and he had his team on the verge of a shocking comeback on the road in Seattle. But on this day, Superman met his kryptonite in the form of defensive end L.J. Collier, who shot into the backfield, upended Newton, and saved the day for the Seahawks, who won, 35-30.
It won’t come as much consolation for Newton, but he’s already tied for the sixth most rushing touchdowns in a season by a Patriots quarterback (with four).
Stephen Gostkowski prefers for the stakes to be high-
The former kicker for the New England Patriots has had quite a first season in Tennessee. The 36-year-old has already missed three field goals and two extra-points through just two games, but when his team has truly needed him he’s been electric. He closed Week 1 with a 25-yard game-winner against Denver, and on Sunday he put the Titans ahead to stay with a 49-yarder in the final minutes against Jacksonville. Tennessee, apparently, just has to keep things close.
Justin Herbert was farther along than anyone thought-
It seemed like an ideal situation in Los Angeles, as the Chargers had a quarterback for the present in Tyrod Taylor, and one for the future in Herbert. But Taylor was a last-minute scratch on Sunday after he reported difficulty breathing, and Herbert, in his first N.F.L. game, very nearly beat Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs! Herbert was nothing short of fantastic against the defending Super Bowl champions, throwing for 311 yards and a touchdown, becoming just the third quarterback (Otto Graham and Cam Newton are the others) to have 300 passing yards and a rushing touchdown in their first N.F.L. appearance.
Preseason games might be important-
Theories will abound for this week’s huge rash of injuries to star players, and many will focus on the lack of preseason games. The hardest hit team has been the 49ers, who added quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, running back Raheem Mostert and defensive end Nick Bosa to an injury report that already included George Kittle and Richard Sherman. But San Francisco was hardly alone. The Giants lost running back Saquon Barkley to a knee injury and Denver lost quarterback Drew Lock for several weeks with a shoulder injury.
We should keep our Packers record books handy-
Green Bay’s offense has been nothing short of phenomenal through two games, scoring a combined 85 points in wins over two N.F.C. North rivals. It’s just the fourth time in franchise history that the Packers have scored 40-plus in consecutive games, according to Pro Football Reference, and they mixed things up by following Davante Adams’s dominant Week 1, he tied a 78-year-old franchise record with 14 receptions, by relying largely on running back Aaron Jones in Week 2. Jones was the team’s leading rusher and its leading receiver, with 236 yards from scrimmage and three total touchdowns.
The Ravens never lose (in the regular season)-
Baltimore won its 14th straight regular season game, blowing out the Houston Texans, 33-16, despite Lamar Jackson throwing for a relatively modest 204 yards and one touchdown, and none of the team’s celebrated runners having more than 73 yards on the ground. It was a full-team effort, with Gus Edwards, Mark Ingram, Jackson and the rookie J.K. Dobbins combining to run for 230 yards on 37 carries, while the team’s defense successfully held Deshaun Watson in check, putting some of their own points on the board thanks to L.J. Fort’s fumble recovery for a touchdown.
The Raiders like their new home in Vegas-
The Las Vegas Raiders played their first game in their new home on Monday night football and were victorious over the fancied New Orleans Saints. The Raiders eventually ran out 34-24 winners in Nevada, opening their new stadium, which will certainly be one to visit when we return to normality, with a win.