Now that we’re into the swing of things, we can finally relax and just write about the games and what happened, right? NOPE. Not here. Here’s what we learned from Week 2, plus some notes on the other big headlines.
Peyton Manning’s games are limited
I was fired UP Friday morning. One, I was pissed not because my Chiefs lost, but how they lost. There was many ways that game could have ended, but a Jamaal Charles fumble wasn’t what topped my list. It was so infuriating to see.
Thursday night’s game was a good one, but I’m gonna spotlight what was probably the biggest storyline out of that game besides the ending.
There was columns written like this, this, this, and even this. Out of all those, I stand somewhere in the middle. Friday morning at school, my mouth was spitting fire with hot takes. I was still pissed about the game that night, so the anti-Peyton Manning side of me came out. It also got to me at the end of the game the night before.
So yeah, those backfired. Big time. And I got KILLED the next morning for them.
Peyton Manning might have engineered the game-tying drive, but he didn’t play well for Denver Thursday, and he definitely didn’t win that game for the Broncos. Manning went 26/45 with 256 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. So yeah, those are okay stats. His QBR was low, at 59.4, but QBR’s a great measurement because it doesn’t just look at the stats. The bottom line with Peyton: His stats were fine, his team played well, but the accuracy, the spin of the ball, and the arm strength just isn’t there anymore. We had this conversation in the NFL preview. I’d had doubts about how good Manning would be this year, but I wasn’t gonna believe it till I saw it. I’ve seen it. I’m concerned. Broncos fans should be too, unless you’re ready for Brock Osweiler.
Buffalo definitely has flaws, but they’re still good
After Tyrod Taylor’s electric debut, he regressed against the Patriots Sunday. While only throwing seven incompletions, Taylor threw for 242 yards and three interceptions. Three touchdowns went along with it, but the picks dropped his QBR to a somber 32.6. He still made plays with his feet, including a 23 yard rush.
Look, this can’t be shocking to anyone. Everyone should have seen a regression coming with Tyrod Taylor. He played against a great team, with the smartest coaches around. New England knew how to make Taylor uncomfortable Sunday, and they did. Buffalo fans still have a lot to look forward with this season. A loss to the defending champions isn’t the end of the world.
A note on this game: I think it’s strange how Karlos Williams is the Bills red zone/3rd down running back, but he’s been really good in that role. Maybe I’m just a pissed off LeSean McCoy fantasy owner.
PS: I’m about to swing McCoy for Doug Martin and Sammy Watkins. I’ve had enough of Karlos Williams.
Alright, he only attempted 15 passes, but he threw two touchdowns, both bombs, and finished with a 75.5 QBR. So, it wasn’t fantastic, but it was definitely impressive, and can only give Browns fans some hope.
Travis Benjamin was insane on Sunday. The guy caught both of Johnny’s bombs, totaling him 115 yards off three receptions.
Tennessee probably has the better quarterback for the future, but for Cleveland, there hasn’t been a future in awhile. Johnny’s probably not it, but for now, he’s all you could ask for.
0-2 teams worth panicking about
Through two weeks, there are nine teams that are 0-2. Too figure out who we should freak about, let’s put these 0-2 teams into categories.
Are we really shocked?
- New Orleans
- New York Giants
You’re just, sketchy
Yeah, I’d be concerned
I had all four of these teams winning their division, and two games in, they’re all 0-2.
Seattle might be the most worrisome. One would say that they’re still figuring it out with Jimmy Graham and the offense, but it’s not like he’s the only weapon. Put it this way: What’s there to figure out? There’s nothing gone from this offense scheme wise; Darrel Bevel and Pete Carroll are still there. I’ve been really confused with the Seahawks offense. Marshawn Lynch is one of the best running backs in the league, Jimmy Graham is a great target, and Russell Wilson is really, really good. Why is this happening?
I really think it’s the play-calling. Jimmy Graham had one catch Sunday against the Packers. Running the ball didn’t get them anywhere, which could be blamed on the offensive line that’s been very leaky this season. Trading Max Unger for Graham doesn’t look great two weeks in.
Their defense has still been good, even without Kam Chancellor. I never got to touch on that situation, which is now old news, and has been for awhile. Look, I think Seattle’s gonna eventually realize they need him, no matter what their win-loss record is. They’ll realize his impact, and they’ll pay up.
Philadelphia has been another team where play-calling has doomed the first two weeks of the season. I’m not gonna flip totally out, since this division is a dumpster fire and they’ll probably win it anyways. However, Philly has DeMarco Murray, Ryan Matthews, and Darren Sproles in their backfield, and Sam Bradford threw the ball 37 times. The Eagles gained a grand total of seven rushing yards Sunday. Bradford’s QBR was a 5.3. 5.3!
This is simply common sense. Philly’s offensive line may not be great, but they have running backs good enough to make up for it. They just aren’t calling the right plays. Sam Bradford still doesn’t look like he’s comfortable throwing the ball, which honestly, is okay because of that running game. But the running game hasn’t been used. The last thing Philly has is a lack of talent. What is lacking is common sense.
The Colts laid an egg last night. There’s no other way to put it. Andrew Luck threw three interceptions. The running game never got going, though looked good in the first drive of the game. Ryan Fitzpatrick put his Fitzmagic into full effect, compiling a 71.9 QBR. Five turnovers plagued Indianapolis.
I have a bad feeling that moves the Colts made this offseason just aren’t gonna work out. They brought in two veterans, who’re past their prime, and expected them to play big roles. T.Y. Hilton was hurt and useless, which didn’t help out this offense either.
Really, Andrew Luck had nowhere to go last night, and I’m worried he won’t have anywhere to go in the future if Andre Johnson and Frank Gore don’t step up.
I’m actually not too worried about the Ravens. They’ve had bad luck in two games, but I have to ask this question after Sunday’s game-ending turnover. Is Joe Flacco an elite quarterback?
Hurt quarterbacks could land Robert Griffin lll on another team
As of now, RG3 hasn’t been moved. He’s still on the Redskins. However, we’ve got report after report out now. If the Redskins are going to move him, this week is the week to do it. And there’s teams that should be interested!
Week 3 isn’t exactly shaping up to be fun for fans of these four teams. So why wouldn’t they call Washington and make a move for RG3? It’d cost what, a 5th round pick? Could RG3’s value be even less than that?
Look, I’m not sure what a trade would look like for RG3, and I’m not sure who’d actually do it. However, the Bears should be ruled out immediately. Why? Well, what if RG3 starts in place of Jay Cutler and is better? That’s a real possibility, right?
Quick hits other games:
- I thought Ryan Mallet played really well against the Panthers even though he threw the ball 58 times (I’m literally not making that number up). That game was somewhat of a crapfest, but it was close at the end. The Texans are kinda just coasting right now. Carolina is in the same position. Final score: Carolina-24 Houston-17
- The Steelers somehow are the best fantasy team in the NFL and Le’Veon Bell hasn’t played in either of their first two games. That’s all I’ve got on this one. Final score: Pittsburgh-43 San Francisco-18
- I touched on Drew Brees above, but I wanted to hit this game one more time. Jameis Winston, after a terrible debut, improved greatly Sunday. He finished with a 85.3 QBR and a touchdown pass. A nice completion percentage went along with it. Look, it looks like a work in progress with Winston. I’d had Marcus Mariota as the work in progress from the beginning. I’m not ready to admit I was wrong yet, but I’m getting there. Final score: Tampa Bay-26 New Orleans-19
- After a pretty horrific loss to the 49ers, Minnesota rebounded Sunday. Adrian Peterson ran for 134 yards, but fumbled a ridiculous three times. Teddy Bridgewater only threw four incompletions. Neither team played great, but for Minnesota, improvement was all you could ask for. Final score: Minnesota-26 Detroit-16
- As my Dad always says, just throw the ball to Larry. The Cardinals did that Sunday, as Fitzgerald caught three touchdowns passes. How dare you call him old and useless? Final score: Arizona-48 Chicago-23
- Are we sure this was a good game? Yeah, it was close, but neither quarterback had a QBR above 70 and there were a lot of turnovers on both sides. No fun. Final score: Cincannati-24 San Diego-19