Hello, it’s I, your former Ball Don’t Lie™ correspondent! Now, I bring you a weekly recap of all things NFL to get you ready for each and every week by recapping the week. This week’s is a little delayed with a hurricane giving me some problems over here in the States, but it’ll be to you every Tuesday. We’ll look at what teams/players you should “buy” or “sell” on the Stock Report, give you some Fantasy advice for you degenerates, and then look at some quick hits in the Extra Point. Let’s get started!
Chiefs Run Wild
So, the season started exactly how we all thought: the Chiefs going to Foxboro and hanging it on the Patriots. Yeesh. The Chiefs looked way better than anyone could have guessed, letting things fly down field in a way Alex Smith has never had. Guess a young QB can change you. Kareem Hunt was awesome, and I love some Tyreek Hill. If this is the new normal in KC, this team is GOOD.
Pats fans: “We are going undefeated!!!!” pic.twitter.com/1IQg7kSRX4
— Djg62 (@D_J_G_62) September 8, 2017
Chargers, Browns Show Fight
Look, I know they lost. But I’ll be the first to admit that I had the Chargers and Browns in the doghouse to start the year. But they both actually looked better than I thought. And that’s sayings something. For Cleveland, Kizer looked the part, and that defense limited Pittsburgh, especially in the secondary. And the Chargers had a rough first half, but the offense lit up in the second half. I may have to update my projected standings…
The DeShone Kizer era begins today pic.twitter.com/fUUFiGfTyT
— Cleveland Legion (@ClevelandLegion) September 10, 2017
Bradford Shows Out
One of the surprises of the Monday Night Football game between the Vikings and the Saints was the insane play of Sam Bradford and the Vikings offense. Now I get it, the Saints defense can make anyone look good. But this was a rare explosion. Dalvin Cook got going, and the passing game with Bradford and Stefon Diggs looked really crisp. This may not be norm, but the Vikings may have one of the more balanced teams in the NFC.
Sam Bradford and Alex Smith outplaying Drew Brees and Tom Brady is probably the most indisputable sign of climate change to date.
— Kyle Madson (@KyleAMadson) September 12, 2017
Oakland Does What We Expect
The Raiders were a trendy pick to win the AFC this year, and for good reason. They were one of the better teams in the AFC last year before Carr went down. Expectations were high heading into this season, and they lived up to them in game one, taking care of fellow-trendy pick Tennessee in their first game. The offense was good, obviously, but I do like their defense.
Rookie RBs Get It Done
We’ve already mentioned Cook, but it was a really good week for rookie running backs all over the league. Christian McCaffrey touched the ball A LOT for the Panthers, Leonard Fournette ran wild over the Texans, Tarik Cohen looked good, and Kareem Hunt put on a show on Thursday. It was a great week for rookies, and that is a really interesting subplot for the league.
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) September 10, 2017
Pats Look Rusty
Not everything was good this week. The Patriots were the obvious choice to rip on first, with that rough display in the second half of the first game. The defense was shredded by a non-elite offense from a year ago. Not only that, Brady had an abysmal game by his standards. In fact, he’s go the lowest completion percentage in the NFL after week one. Yeah, they’ll fix it. But they are beatable.
Since 2007, Tom Brady has played exactly two games with no Wes Welker, Julian Edelman or Danny Amendola. The Patriots lost both.
— Doug Kyed (@DougKyed) September 14, 2017
Where do I start, exactly? The Colts were without Andrew Luck, again, and threw out Scott Tolzien to be the QB for this one-sided affair. You had two struggling teams, and the Rams had the competent defense. But the Colts offense made them look like the NFL’s best, and their defense made Jared Goff look like an All-Pro. If this is what Andrew Luck is working with, he should be MVP.
The #Colts led the NFL in run defense in Week One (1.91 YPC), yet lost by 37.
Can’t believe either part of that sentence is true.
— Kevin Bowen (@KBowen1070) September 12, 2017
AFC North Disappoints
We had AFC North matchups for our viewing pleasure to open the season. The Steelers and Browns featured the Steelers looking really out of sync on offense and sluggish on D. And the Bengals and Ravens featured a shutout that looked awful for Cincinnati, and somehow wasn’t the best look for the Ravens either. The division can’t be as bad as they looked this weekend.
Cam Isn’t Superman Right Now
Cam Newton had an up-and-down year last year after winning the MVP in 2015. He had injury concerns, and that’s fine, but his shoulder must really be bothering him to play like he did against San Francisco. He was missing receivers badly, overthrowing and side-arming throws. If the Panthers want to do anything, Cam has to fix his errant throws and fast.
Texans QB Disaster
The Texans really disappointed me this weekend. For starters, their offense gave up four scores to a struggling Blake Bortles and Jacksonville. And then on offense, this group was bad. Tom Savage was the worst NFL QB this side of Scott Tolzien, and rookie Deshaun Watson didn’t look much better. This is a roster with talent everywhere, but it wasn’t a great start for this group.
Watt heading to locker room to go raise money for a new QB #Texans
— Joey Estapa (@Joey_Heisman) September 10, 2017
Injury Bug Bites
It was only week one, but we got a nice taste of injury bugs across the NFL. Allen Robinson went down for the year for the Jags, David Johnson may be done for the Cardinals, Kevin White is hurt again, and we saw Rueben Foster and Dont’a Hightower get injured for New England. Not a great start.
Start Donta Freeman of the Falcons, he’s got a pretty nice defense in the secondary and should see some carries.
Tom Brady is a big one this week, with the Saints defense giving him someone to take his frustration out on.
I like the Raiders defense against the Jets, as well as the Bucs against Chicago.
Oh, and take Julio Jones against that Green Bay defense.
And don’t star the wrong Brown: John Brown may sit, so go with Jaron Brown if you need a FLEX player.
The Extra Point
Stefon Diggs had a nice catch… and punt
— Jordan Tomiyama (@Jttomiyama) September 12, 2017
Twitter was talking about this punt, by the way
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) September 10, 2017
Oh, and Adrain Peterson isn’t happy
Looks like things are going well with the #Saints.
Adrian Peterson hitting Sean Payton with the “don’t make me get a switch” face. pic.twitter.com/ZslXtrpE6K
— Chris Kroeger (@Kroeger) September 12, 2017
See y’all next week!