Week One in the NFL


MCT Campus

Colin Kaepernick threw for over 400 yards in his season opener against the Packers

Freshly cut turf, the smell of barbeque outside of the stadium, and only 95% of the players are in jail this year. Yes, football’s back! If you’re anything like me, you’re ecstatic, depressed, infuriated, and have already given up on fantasy football. There isn’t a fan on this planet who doesn’t have mixed emotions about this hectic (to say the least) week of football.

Every game of week one was pretty much the same thing: a big giant rollercoaster (I’ve always hated that cliché). But tackling everything at the same time this week is nearly impossible. So instead, I’ll break it up into a recap of every key game in a column that’s 1,000 words longer than necessary. You’re welcome.

Baltimore Ravens 27, Denver Broncos 49

Well, this game ended just how everyone predicted. Peyton Manning threw 7 touchdowns while Joe Flacco threw almost 70 times.

Let’s start from the beginning. We all waited eight months for football to start only to be told that we had to wait an extra 33 minutes to kick-off. Unless you were suffering from post-pregame tailgating and were stuck in the restroom before the game, you weren’t too happy with a little storm delay. Then, just to give fans another reason to hate Roger Goodell, the 2013-14 season began with a special appearance from (drumroll please)… Ryan Seacrest! Yeah, because nothing says football like American Idol, am I right?

Thankfully, we have the always reliable Peyton Manning to get us through what seemed to be a tragedy of a season opener. But then again, the guy I’m playing in fantasy has Peyton Manning. And Wes Welker.  And Demaryius Thomas. After one night, I was already down by 98 points. I’m still trying to justify my reasoning for playing this thing every year. Who throws seven touchdowns in one game?! SEVEN?!

After this week, there isn’t a doubt in my mind that Peyton Manning is still the best quarterback in the NFL. You can make your case for Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or Drew Bees, but let’s be real, Peyton Manning is playing like 30-year-old pre-neck surgery Manning, and that’s not a good thing if you’re a defensive coordinator. Three neck surgeries later, and Manning’s still a pain in the neck for them.

This is the first time in team history that the Ravens allowed 49 points in a game. It’s also the first time the team has ever played a game without Ray Lewis on the roster. Coincidence? I think not. Look, I’m all for Terrell Suggs being a great defender, but he’s not half the team leader Ray Lewis was. Or Ed Reed for that matter, who headed for Houston this off-season.               

Seattle Seahawks 12, Carolina Panthers 7

                Let’s start with a little background check. Before the season, ESPN had Seattle as number one in their week one power rankings. The Panthers were ranked 23rd. I’m not saying this game should’ve been a blowout, but it should’ve.

That wasn’t the case this week. The Panthers stayed stride for stride with the Seahawks and could’ve won the game if it wasn’t for a typical late game fumble by DeAngelo Williams after a 16-yard rush. A few stats stick out to me:

Seattle committed nearly 100 yards in penalties this week. That’s more than any other team to open up the season.

Seattle only accounted for 24 yards after contact by their running backs. The only appropriate hash tag here “#BeastMode”.

Seattle was also 0-3 in the red-zone. Maybe we all did buy into the hype too early. They definitely did not look number one to me this week.

New York Jets 18, Tampa Bay Bucs 17

This game was nominated for the “Most Intense Game between the Worst Teams in Football” award. Don’t look at me; I don’t come up with the names.

Geno Smith made his first start as Jets quarterback (just saying that makes me sad), and led them to a fourth quarter comeback victory over the Buccaneers. It only took facing last year’s worst pass defense and a blown call on a late hit to do it.

I’m still not sure why they never gave Tebow a shot. It wouldn’t hurt, would it?

Atlanta Falcons 17, New Orleans Saints 23

The Falcons are now just one loss away from tying their loss total from last year. It’s early, and this may just be an overreaction, but I told everyone Sean Payton was the x-factor. This team is as good as, if not better than every team in the NFL. I wouldn’t be surprised if they made the Super Bowl.

As for the Falcons, I don’t believe this is Matt Ryan’s last chance. He’s been given everything he needs to succeed, and still has nothing to show for it. This reminds me another quarterback; I think his name was Peyton Manning or something. I heard that guy was pretty good.

Green Bay Packers 28, San Francisco 34

              Yes! I finally got something right!  I’ve always been an avid fan of Colin Kaepernick since his first start over Alex Smith last year. The man is a defense’s worst nightmare and there’s nothing they can do about it. I had my doubts, however, with all the talk of the read-option being just one of those yearly trends.

Kaepernick proved all the critics wrong in his week one opener in a way that no one expected. If anyone would’ve told you that Kaepernick would out-throw Aaron Rodgers, they would’ve looked at you the same way they’d look at you if you said Mark Sanchez’s “butt-fumble” wasn’t the worst play in Sports Center Not Top 10 history.

In short, Kaepernick is here to stay. Not only will he succeed this regular season, but the Niners are also my Super Bowl pick this year.

New York Giants 31, Dallas Cowboys 36

                Finally, the curse of Jerry World has been lifted in possibly the ugliest game in the stadium’s 6 year history. The game opened up with an interception on the first play of the game by Eli Manning. Yet, with some of the best field position the Cowboys had all night, they were held to just a field goal.

Speaking of field position, Ryan Mundy took an interception 91 yards to the Dallas one-yard line and the Giants failed to score a touchdown! If this doesn’t rank under one of the worst offensive performances for either team, I’d be pretty scared to find out what does.

Philadelphia Eagles 33, Washington Redskins 27

Monday Night Football opened up with 53 plays and 21 first downs coming from the Philadelphia Chip Kellys. The new offense that had everyone watching worked like a well-oiled machine. They were trotting down the field as if the Redskins weren’t even playing defense this game (I’m still not convinced they were).

That is, until the second half at least. The Eagles were shutout in the last 28 and a half minutes of the game by the Redskins as RG3 lead the Skins to a near comeback coming within one onside recovery shy of a game winner.

As for Michael Vick, it wasn’t really an Eagle’s game until he got hurt. It’s a perfect example of déjà vu that Eagles fans have to live through year after year. Some things never change.