By: Ben Meyerson
Follow us on twitter: @clearcutsport
Here is our comprehensive review of Week 1 of the NFL:
Bengals @ Colts Final Score: CIN 34- IND 23
New Coach, Same Colts
The Colts team was excited to have a new head coach who had experience being creative on offense and using new schemes that would change the team. This loss was the loss of an undisciplined team with 7 penalties for a total of 91 yards with three of those coming in the second half on the go-ahead drive for the Bengals. While they had a lot of injuries and started off hot this team lacked discipline and just couldn’t finish the game. Their run game struggled without Marlon Mack, but he doesn’t seem like a huge step up from what they had today. The Colts clearly had a lack of talent and need to address that even more in the upcoming offseason.
On the Bengals side this game wasn’t their best and they have much to improve on. While it was a slow start they scored half of their points in the 4th quarter, they were clutch in the second half on defense only allowing 7 points. Andy Dalton is still typical Andy Dalton (meh) and if they expect to make the playoffs they need to play much better as this game was more about the Colts struggles.
Bills @ Ravens Final Score: BUF 3-BAL 47
Buffalo is awful and going 0-16
While everyone expected the Ravens to win no one expected this. The Ravens finished with 2 interceptions and 6 sacks, their offense finished with 3 rushing touchdowns by 3 separate players and 6 total touchdowns. Also the Ravens punter finished with more yards than the whole Bills offense. There is nothing more to say.
The Bills drafted Josh Allen this season and Nathan Peterman last season, Nathan Peterman went 5/18 and threw 2 interceptions and was just awful. This team is awful, this season will be awful get used to it Bills fans.
Buccaneers @ Saints Final Score: TMP 48- NO 40
This Fitzmagic Moment
The Saints were favored heavily at home and Ryan Fitzpatrick ruined opening day in New Orleans. The Bucs were extremely efficient with Fitzpatrick throwing 28 passes and completing 21 with 417 yards and 4 touchdowns. They struggled running the ball with their highest rusher averaging 3.6 YPC, but that didn’t matter in the end. But this will be a moment and not more to come as the Bucs allowed 40 points and in the last 4 seasons the Saints lost their opener every year.
Field Yates provided an interesting stat: the Saints have opened 0-3 and 0-2 in the 4 seasons so don’t panic New Orleans fans this will not be what the rest of the season will be like. The defense will come up to speed with the offense but Kamara played terrific without Ingram and Drew Brees was very close to leading an incredible comeback.
Texans @ Patriots Final Score: NE 27- HOU 20
Too little, too late
The Texans struggled early on and they just couldn’t get anything going on offense until the second half and even then it was just too late. Deshaun Watson struggled early on and the offense couldn’t get it going settling for two field goals in the first half. Lamar Miller was able to get great plays against the Pats averaging 4.9 YPC. This team missed Will Fuller and still have offense line problems but they have a lot they can take away from this game. Their defense needs to play better and can’t expect to win games with letting up 27 points on the road.
This is a typical Patriots home game they won the sack battle 3-2 and allowed just 176 passing yards. While they let their foot off the pedal in the second half they can clearly hold on to leads and are as good as ever. The offense was clicking with Tom Brady throwing 276 yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. The running game was weak but they had injuries to both of their first round picks and will get better as the year goes on.
49ers @ Vikings Final Score: SF 16- MIN 24
YOU LIKE THAT, YOU LIKE THAT!!
The Vikings have only up to go after last season losing in the NFC Championship losing no key players and upgrading at QB. That upgrade payed off big time today with Kirk Cousins throwing 244 yards and 2 touchdowns and while Dalvin Cook struggled out of their backfield he actually finished second in receiving yards on the team with 6 catches for 55 yards. The defense is as good as ever getting 3 interceptions and 3 sacks. The Vikings are contenders this year.
San Fransisco isn’t a bad team they just faced a better team today, they clearly still have a lot of work to do on the team as a whole. Their offense looked good versus a top-3 defense and they struggled on defense, they clearly still need pieces on that side of the ball. Jimmy G threw 3 interceptions, but they did show good flashes.
Titans @ Dolphins Final Score: TEN 20- MIA 27
Rain, rain go away
This game was the longest game in NFL history lasting approximately 7 hours in total. The good news for the Titans is this won’t be typical and games like this can be very flukey. The bad news is they may not have Marcus Mariota as he left the game twice with injury. Some positives are that they ran the ball effectively and the secondary looked very good.
For the Dolphins they got rid of who many considered the best players on their team: Suh, Ajayi and Landry. They looked good, all things considered and rushed for over 100 yards and Ryan Tannehill threw for 230 yards. The secondary was excellent getting 3 interceptions, but the defense didn’t get a single sack and they can’t rely on the starting QB getting hurt twice and the game lasting twice as long.
Jaguars @ Giants Final Score: JAX 20- NYG 15
Two playoff teams?
On the Giants side of the ball Saqoun Barkley struggled mealy but ripped off a 68 yard touchdown run to bring the giants back into it and the offense looked completely different under Pat Shurmur. Considering they were playing the best defense in the NFL this wasn’t a bad day for the G-Men, Eli struggled but they showed they can hang with the AFC 2nd place finisher.
Jacksonville is winning the way people expected them too, the defense holding on as Bortles nearly blows it. The defense was incredible besides the long run by Barkley he couldn’t get anything done and OBJ had to avoid Jalen Ramsey to get anything done on offense. The offense should be a little worried Founrnette missed multiple games last season with injury and left this game with an ankle injury and never returned. Bortles threw for under 200 yards (176) and the offense looked a little out of sync.
Steelers @ Browns Final Score: PIT 21- CLE 21
Rain, rain, go away, again
This game was ugly and probably should’ve been delayed but just like Soccer we ended up with a tie. The Browns dug themselves out of a whole and were able to push the game to OT in the second half. It was ugly, it was crazy and Cleveland is walking away with its first non-loss of December 2016. This was a weird game Tyrod Taylor didn’t play all that great but he proved that his veteran experience comes in great when the Browns are down late. it’s disappointing that the weather kept them from winning on a last second (usually automatic) field goal but a non-loss is a non-loss.
On the Steelers side of things this was embarrassing this is a game they should pencil in every year and it could prove important when determine the tie breakers for the playoffs. While James Conner dismantled the Browns it’s crazy to think what the Steelers could’ve done with Bell. This team was unfocused and needs to be better if they expect to be in the hunt for a championship this year.
Chiefs @ Chargers Final Score: KC 38- LAC 28
Mahomes and Hill, wow, oh wow
For the Chiefs Patrick Mahomes proved he was worthy of the 10th overall pick and them trading Alex Smith. Tyreek Hill had a monster game and is the star of this game, he finished with 7 catches for 169 yards and 2 touchdowns and oh by the way he returned a touchdown off a punt. This offense is high octane and are thriving in the passing game. They should expect more out of Kareem Hunt but for an away game this was an awesome statement game.
For the Chargers they should’t panic but they should be worried, if they have championship goals they need to win divisional games at home. The offense played well with Phillip Rivers throwing for 424 yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception and them rushing for over 100 yards. While the defense was missing Joey Bosa they still need to play better then they did. Allowing 38 points at home isn’t what a playoff team does. But this is week 1 and they’ll only get better so they shouldn’t freak out.
Cowboys @ Panthers Final Score: DAL 8- CAR 16
This was a bad game all-around for the Cowboys, the talk of the declining offensive line riddled by injury showed today as the Cowboys didn’t have an offensive play over 20 yards for the entire game. Today was a mess for the Cowboys they aren’t looking like the team two years ago as much as they are looking like last years team.
Carolina played great today and could’ve played better but they’d the entire game and proved that they deserve to be in the playoff hunt this year. Cam was 17/26 with a rushing touchdown and 54 rushing yards he kept the game under control and showed he that this team can thrive without a lot of receiving help.
Washington @ Arizona Final Score: WSH 24- ARZ 6
Two meh teams take the field
Washington lit up this team and proved that Alex Smith is worth the contract they weren’t willing to give to Kirk Cousins throwing for 255 yards, 2 touchdowns and going 21/30. AP had a great game and proved he’s still an NFL back getting 96 yards and a touchdown. It’s hard to say how good this team since they played a team many consider a bottom-5 roster in the league.
Arizona played like a bottom-5 roster in the league, Sam Bradford threw 20/34 with one interception. David Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald seem to be the only NFL caliber players on the offense and the defense allowed 24 points to a team that is going to win around 7 or 8 games. This isn’t gonna be a great year and they should look to start Rosen earlier rather than later.
Seahawks @ Broncos Final Score: DEN 24- SEA 27
A close one
The Seahawks played well the entire game scoring in every single quarter and with Russell Wilson throwing 298 yards, 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Unfortunately they got close today but not close enough losing by just 3 points, while the defense got 3 interceptions they let the Broncos score 27 and didn’t get a single sack. The much criticized offensive line allowed 6 sacks in this game. Seattle is going to have a down year we know that but it’ll be interesting to see how far they fall.
For Denver, if they hope to make the playoffs they need these kinds of wins. Case Keenum did throw 3 interceptions and struggled at times but also showed he is a starting caliber QB. The defense showed awesome flashes with Justin Simmons and Adam Jones picking off Russell Wilson and proved they can hang and close out games.
Bears @ Packers Final Score: CHI 23- GB 24
INSTANT CLASSIC! R-E-L-A-X
Wow if you didn’t watch this game you missed out on an Aaron Rodgers classic, the Packers were down 20 at one point and came back in classic Aaron Rodgers fashion. The Packers coming back by this much tied for Aaron Rodgers largest comeback ever. He is incredible and the Packers scored 21 in the 4th quarter alone, he was hobbling and stumbling but that didn’t matter Aaron Rodgers is a baaaaaaad man.
This one stings for the Bears, Khalil Mack played worthy of his monster 6-year $141 million, getting a sack, an interception and a forced fumble in the first half alone. The offense was firing on all cylinders in the first half and Matt Nagy proved he was worthy of a head coaching position, the offense was running trick plays and running all over the place. The problem for the Bears is they were playing Aaron Rodgers. This time had high expectations and they still should they could easily play for a playoff spot.