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So with two weeks down and fifteen to go, the NFL season is chock full of story lines. I asked myself which one of them are the ones that matter most to the balance of the league. Upon having this crazy conversation with myself (literally nobody else around to talk to), I realized that there’s more than a few. Not one, not two, not three but a few. Let’s take a look shall we.
Attack of the what if’s
The New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, Cleveland Browns, Washington Redskins and Jacksonville Jaguars have all started the season 0-2, a pitfall few teams climb out of for playoff daylight. The way they’re playing right now, you can’t really predict them going to the playoffs. I guarantee there will be an avalanche of excuses to pile over the would-be good season turned bad. Let’s see if some of these teams can get it together.
The Saints have lost two games by a combined four points. The Dolphins seem to not show up to their games until the 3rd quarter which all of their touchdowns have been scored in the second half and both losses were very close. The Colts and Jags both roll out quality young quarterbacks so maybe they can get together just off the strength of their play. Other teams on this list you just might have to pray for. There’s talk of disarray in the Bills locker room, players not liking other players or coaches even. The Bears and Browns have injuries at key spots including the most important spot at quarterback. Nobody can get a beat on the Redskins though. The team seemingly upgraded at much needed spots and return a lot of the players that help them win the division last year yet they find themselves at the bottom of their division.
Carson Wentz 21 of 34, 190 yards and a touchdown (week 2 against the Bears):
Throughout his early tenure as the Eagles starter the young quarterback has thrown three touchdowns and zero interceptions. What’s more impressive, the team is 2-0 during that span. Wentz looks very much to par with his huge stature in the pocket and athletic ability to escape when needed and make plays. The Browns had the 2nd overall pick originally. I can’t imagine the frustration they feel every game this kid plays while they roll out a bunch of misfits week in and week out.
Jimmy Garoppolo- 498 passing yards, four touchdowns: In a game and a half, the Patriots backup quarterback (the projected starter for the first four games due to Tom Brady’s four game suspension) looks very much like the incumbent starter. The third year signal caller was brought in for this very reason, to keep the ship going while “Captain America” serves his suspension.
Corey Coleman- five catches, 104 yards and two touchdowns: The Browns have nothing to be happy about. Not only losing starter Robert Griffin III for the season but now backup quarterback backup Josh McCown is hurt. Coleman in his rookie year is impressive. The team has no continuity at all but maybe this kid combined with the return of Josh Gordon might give them something special at the wide receiver position.
Predictions sure to come back and haunt me (week 3)
The Saints play the Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night Football on the 10th year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. New Orleans will be fired up; that being said, I’ll take the Falcons. The Saints being fired up won’t stop Julio Jones and company.
The Seattle Seahawks play the San Francisco 49ers. Can their offense take a step forward? I say no. I won’t pick the game outright yet but I will take the “under” no matter what number it’s set at.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Philadelphia Eagles. Who would have thought the battle for Pennsylvania would be so intriguing. Wentz, his biggest test thus far, will have trouble with the Steelers. Will his no-turnover streak continue? I’ll take Pittsburgh in a game that will be closer than we think. Antonio Brown is due to bust out this week (Sorry Eagles).
See ya next week !