With the second Sunday of the 2016 NFL season in the rearview mirror, let’s take a look back and see how the games went. Who won, who lost, what teams are on the rise and who’s in a freefall.
San Francisco 49ers 27 Carolina Panthers 46
Carolina continued their home winning streak at the expense of Chip Kelly’s errant 49ers. Panther Quarterback Cam Newton threw for 353 yards and four touchdowns while running back Fozzy Whitaker added 100 yards on the ground.
Baltimore Ravens 25 Cleveland Browns 20
Cleveland jumped out to an early 20 point lead when Baltimore blocked their extra point, returned it for two of their own and shut the Browns out for the final three-quarters.
Tennessee Titans 16 Detroit Lions 15
Titans’ wide receiver Andre Johnson tossed his hat in the ring for “ageless wonder” catching a last-minute go-ahead touchdown through double coverage to put his new team up with 1:13 left on the clock. Detroit tried to mount a comeback of their own, but Quarterback Matthew Stafford threw an interception to Tennessee’s Parrish Cox to end the game.
Kansas City Chiefs 12 Houston Texans 19
One of the ugliest games of the day came down to the wire as the Texans held on to get coach Bill O’Brien his first win over an Andy Reid led-team. The Kansas City offense had no answers for J.J. Watt and his fellow Texan defenders, but Houston’s offense didn’t do much better as new Quarterback Brock Osweiler’s rating was a measly 68.8.
Miami Dolphins 24 New England Patriots 31
It seems New England coach Bill Belichick could put the waterboy under center and the Patriots would win. Tom Brady’s backup Jimmy Garrapolo suffered a separated shoulder in the second quarter and rookie third-string signal caller Jacoby Brissett stepped in and held off the Dolphins to keep his team undefeated.
New Orleans Saints 13 New York Giants 16
Eli Manning skipped his brother Peyton’s invitation to come eat nachos so he could engineer a last minute drive to kick a field goal and avoid overtime. Drew Brees and his fellow Saints now have sole possession of the basement in the NFC South and are one of only three winless teams in the conference.
Cincinnati Bengals 16 Pittsburgh Steelers 24
While the game lacked the usual scrappiness modern day fans have come to expect from a Bengals/Steelers game, the ugly win monster still reared his head. Pittsburgh and Baltimore now hold first place in the AFC North and somehow Marvin Lewis’ seat never gets warm up in Cincinnati.
Dallas Cowboy 27 Washington Redskins 23
The Tony Romo-less Cowboys are finding ways to win in spite of themselves. Washinton, however, is still trying to find their elusive first win, sharing the most-losses-in-the-NFC title with the Saints. Rumors are swirling that Redskins players are blaming quarterback Kirk Cousins, but Tom Brady might have problems leading a team owned by Dan Snyder.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7 Arizona Cardinals 40
After losing their first game to a wounded New England Patriots team, head coach Bruce Arians and general manager Steve Keim went off on the team for their poor performance. Apparently, they should do that after every loss as the Cardinals responded and took the Buccaneers to the woodshed, proving who belongs in the post season conversation and who’s still a year or two away.
Seattle Seahawks 3 Los Angeles Rams 9
Pro football returns to the LA Coliseum not with a bang, but instead with a yawn-covered whimper as the anemic Rams found a way to shut down Pete Carrol, Russell Wilson and the Super Bowl favorite Seattle Seahawks. The only real excitement in this game was LA winning their first home battle since 1994.
Indianapolis Colts 20 Denver Broncos 34
If you want to chat about the Broncos win at the water cooler today all you have to say was “How about that Von Miller!” The reigning super bowl MVP proved he hasn’t lost a step, terrorizing pro bowl quarterback Andrew Luck all day and sending the Colts to their third straight 0-2 season start.
Atlanta Falcons 35 Oakland Raiders 28
The new-look Oakland Raiders looked like the old Raiders as they lost on the strength of a controversial call from the referees. Maybe when they move to Las Vegas their luck will change?
Jacksonville Jaguars 14 San Diego Chargers 38
In the “we’re better than you and we’re going to prove it” column the San Diego Chargers won the battle of AFC teams on the rise, taking it to the Jacksonville Jaguars whose defense had no answers for Phillip Rivers and his receivers who combined for four touchdowns on the day.
Green Bay Packers 14 Minnesota Vikings 17
Under the Sunday night lights of their shiny new stadium, old coach Bud Grant sounded the horn that set the new era for the Vikings in motion. Newly appointed starting quarterback Sam Bradford had his best game in years, throwing 286 yards, two scores and no picks despite losing all-world running back Adrian Peterson to a knee injury. Aaron Rodgers efforts looked more like his current commercial where he’s trying to take out a fly with a golf club – a strong effort that ultimately misses and causes more harm than good.