Patriots 28 Steelers 21
Tom Brady is hell in a courtroom and hasn’t forgotten how to play quarterback either. Brady and the Patriots opened up the 2015 regular season with a great offensive showing against Pittsburgh. Brady looked as good as ever and Gronk had a monster game as well.
The Steelers suffered from two missed field goals, but did move the ball on the ground with DeAngelo Williams filling in nicely for the suspended Le’Veon Bell.
Eye popping stat of the game: Lots of contenders, but DeAngelo Williams averaged over six yards a carry. Hard to top that.
Turning point: Brady’s suspension being lifted last week, and Gronk recovering a fumble at the one to set up his third TD catch.
Fantasy league carnage: Gronk’s three scores had many a fantasy owner way down before the weekend.
Green Bay 31 Chicago 23
Aaron Rodgers can make any receiver look pretty damn good. James Jones came back to Green Bay after he was left on a church doorstep by the rest of the League. Jones filled in nicely for Jordy Nelson who is out for 2015 with an ACL injury.
Jones ended up with two touchdowns in a close game with a surprisingly tough Bears club.
Chicago stayed in the game with Matt Forte being used in multiple ways in the new Chicago offense. Forte ended the game with 141 yards.
Jay Cutler looked like Jay Cutler once again. 18 of 36 with one pick to offset his one TD throw will not get it done against Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay.
Eye popping stat of the game: Cast-off Jame Jones’ two TDs.
Nail in coffin play: Clay Matthews interception of Cutler in the fourth quarter.
Fantasy league carnage: James Jones was a sleeper that wrecked many a league.
Kansas City 27 Houston 20
Don’t be fooled by the score in this one. The Texans were outplayed from the jump. KC jumped to a 27-9 lead as Alex Smith and Travis Kelce hooked up for two of those scores.
J.J. Watt got two sacks just as he is paid to do, but the Texans defense just gave up too many big plays. They were simply beaten up and down the field until late in the game when they managed some late scores.
Ryan Mallett relieved Brian Hoyer who struggled mightily and the starter is up in the air for week two according to Bill O’brien.
Eye popping stat of the game: Smith throwing three TDs for KC.
Turning point: Brian Hoyer being named starter during training camp.
Fantasy league carnage: Travis Kelce chewed up some fantasy points and is no longer under the radar.
Cleveland 10 NY Jets 31
Johnny Football had the chance to save the day for Cleveland but coughed up the ball three times in relief of the injured Josh McCown. Manziel makes highlight reel moves just like in college, but seems to lose the ball much more now that he is in the League. J Football did have a nice deep pass for a score before he went off track.
The Jets got a great game from running back Chris Ivory and their receiving corp showed out as well. Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker are going to be a formidable duo if Ryan Fitzpatrick can be just be steady.
Eye popping stat of the game: Four lost fumbles for Cleveland.
Fantasy league carnage: Chris Ivory saved my fantasy Sunday as he was in the top tier of running backs.
Indianapolis 14 Buffalo 27
The score in this one is deceiving. Colts got waxed by a better football team. The Bills defense did not allow Luck and company to zoom up and down the field, holding Indy scoreless much of the game.
“T-Mobile” Tyrod Taylor had a great game, showing how deserving he is of QB1 status. His deep TD pass Percy Harvin was beau-ti-ful. Hopefuly Harvin can stay focused and be a consistent threat for the Bills all year.
Eye popping stat of the game: 6.2 yards per play for the Bills
Turning point: Kickoff. The Bills jumped on Indy early and stayed on them.
Miami 17 Washington 10
Kirk Cousins just can’t avoid INTs. They cost the Redskins in this winnable game with the Dolphins offense struggling most of the way.
Eye popping stat of the game: Alfred Morris back in form with 121 yards rushing.
Turning point: Jarvis Landry’s 69 yard punt return for the Phins.
Carolina 20 Jacksonville 9
In this forgettable game that was barely covered by the NFL RedZone, Carolina ended up on top. There were two late first half TD passes by each QB.
The second half was wrapped up with Blake Bortles tossing a pick six to ensure a Panthers’ win.
Eye popping stat of the game: Three Jags turnovers helped Carolina to the win.
Fantasy league carnage: Carolina’s D had five sacks, two picks, and one INT to make them a top defense in fantasy play.
Seattle 31 St. Louis 34
This was the best game of Sunday’s lineup. We had overtime, Lynch toting six defenders at a time, and Tavon Austin showing out. What would have happened if the Rams had either Gurley or Tre Mason in the lineup?
Tyler Lockett showed how dangerous he will be in 2015 as the rookie exploded for a 57 yard punt return for six points. Jimmy Graham scored in his Seattle debut on a Rams blitz inside the ten yard line.
Seattle scored 18 points in the 4th quarter to tie the game. A sack scoop and score by the Hawks defense had the Rams on their heels.
Overtime was an adventure with Pete Carroll getting cute with an onside kick to start. That only cost Seattle a FG by the Rams. But the Seattle offense was out of bullets on their drive that ended with a fourth down Lynch run that failed. Rams win this first division battle between the two.
Eye popping stat of the game: 79 plays for the Hawks, 55 for the Rams.
Turning point: Rams fumble with nine minutes left in the game gave Seattle life.
Fantasy league carnage: Seattle’s defense scored more points than their skilled positions unsurprisingly.
New Orleans 19 Arizona 31
Carson Palmer looked laser sharp in this contest as Arizona topped New Orleans.
The Saints chewed up lots of passing yardage but settled for too many FGs. Palmer got his team in the end zone with help from three different receivers who benefited from his accuracy.
The Cardinals got the win but lost Andre Ellington to a knee injury, that will be further examined on Monday.
Eye popping stat of the game: Palmer’s 307 yards passing.
Fantasy league carnage: Palmer was up there with Tom Brady in most fantasy leagues.
Detroit 28 San Diego 33
This game got good in the second half, but had plenty of scoring in the first for one team at least.
Detroit jumped out to an early 21-3 lead as rookie running back Ameer Abdullah shined with a touchdown and 50 yards rushing to go with 44 receiving yards.
The Lions had no answer for Rivers in the second half and he ended up with 404 yards passing.
Eye popping stat of the game: Lions led 21-3 early.
Turning point: Better pass protection for Rivers in the second half.
Fantasy league carnage: Keenan Allen and little Danny Woodhead inked serious fantasy points on Sunday.
Tennessee 42 Tampa Bay 1
This was a tale of two rookie QBs. One and two overall draft picks. Number two, Mariota had a terrific NFL debut while Winston would like to forget his.
Jameis Winston threw a pick six on his first pro pass. Mariota threw a TD on his first series. The game got worse for the Bucs’ young QB who was a dismal 16 of 33 and threw another pick. He also fumbled twice, but recovered both.
Mariota went on to throw four touchdowns in the first half alone. His outstanding game may say more about the Bucs defense than Mariota’s skill as a pro at this point. He threw four TDs on just 13 completions. That’s not going to happen the rest of this year for him I’m certain.
Eye popping stat of the game: Winston’s 6.7 QBR.
Fantasy league carnage: Mariota’s debut helped those brave enough to draft the former Duck.
Cincinnati 33 Oakland 13
Cincy whipped Oakland up and down the field. The Raiders lost Derek Carr to a hand injury and there was no coming back from that.
Eye popping stat of the game: 246 total yards for Oakland.
Fantasy league carnage: Bengals’ Tyler Eifert came from nowhere to be at the top of the TE stats.
Baltimore 13 Denver 19
Peyton Manning needed his defense in this one to get a win. He was sacked four times and failed to get his crew over the goal line.
Lucky for Denver, Aqib Talib pick sixed Joe Flacco to generate enough scoring to close out the Ravens.
Eye popping stat of the game: One pick six for both teams or this would have been a super low scoring affair.
NY Giants 26 Dallas 27
Romo to Witten is a combination that has been reliable for what seems like decades. The QB / TE duo hooked up for a last minute score to shock New York, who had the game in hand very late.
Giants coach Tom Coughlin took the blame for poor game management at the end which allowed the Cowboys to even get a shot at a last drive. “The decision to throw the ball on third down was not a good decision,” he said. “It should have been a run, whether we scored or not.” To blame also was on Eli Manning who threw the ball away instead of taking a sack on that play.
Dallas comes away with an emotional win, but that emotion will be flipped the next few weeks while Dez Bryant recovers from a broken foot. He was hurt in the first half and will miss up to six weeks.
Eye popping stat of the game: Romo 36/45 and 356 yards in the win.
Turning point: Eli stopping the clock with the throw away on his last drive.
Fantasy league carnage: Romo did enough good things to offset his two picks in the world of fantasy football. He was in the top six in most league types.