We got ourselves a regular season! The first week of the NFL season is in the books after tonight, with the long anticipation finally over. There are some noteworthy headlines in the premiere week of the 2021 season. What happened in the first week, and who should be happy or concerned?
R-E-L-A-X, Part Two? The Aaron Rodgers/Green Bay Packer saga featured plenty of drama in the off-season. That included the reigning MVP going on many grand adventures while missing part of training camp and speculation of retirement. The first game for the Pack didn't add any promise, as Rodgers went 15-for-28 for 133 yards and two interceptions. The result was a 38-3 dismantling at the hands of New Orleans, adding fuel to the fire. Has Green Bay's star quarterback checked out of the season? Should cheeseheads everywhere be concerned about their team?
The Crazy Finish in the Motor City Up by 24 with two minutes left against Detroit, you'd figure San Francisco would waltz out of the Motor City with an easy victory. Not so fast. Dan Campbell's squad fought back, getting an onside kick and recovering a fumble while scoring two touchdowns. Granted, the Niners won the game. But part of the comeback was the Lions not giving up. Part of it was also Kyle Shanahan's team nearly blowing a big lead again. Fans will recall the Falcons blowing a 28-3 lead and the Niners blowing a double-digit lead against the Chiefs in the Super Bowl. If San Francisco's to return to the Super Bowl, Shanahan needs to toughen up his team mentally so they sustain leads without breaking a sweat. Otherwise, he'll get the pink slip.
Mr. September Strikes Again: If there's one person that can handle the pressure, it's Patrick Mahomes. The former MVP led the Chiefs from a 22-10 deficit as his squad rallied to beat the Cleveland Browns, 33-29. Mahomes has never thrown an interception--or lost a game--in September, throwing for 11 career touchdowns during the first month. The star quarterback is always doing something awe-inspiring, yet this is the cherry on top. Maybe there won't be a Super Bowl hangover for Kansas City, after all. Not if Mr. Mahomes has anything to say about it.
The Thursday Night Thriller: Did you see the great quarterback duel to start the season? Both Tom Brady and Dak Prescott stole the show, leaving football fans on the edge of their seats. You couldn't have asked for a better way to start the NFL season than a back-and-forth battle between the Dallas Cowboys and the Super Bowl champions, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Top Five Power Rankings
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Rams