I am blessed to be here to see another NFL Opening Sunday. Looking at the week 1 schedule, you could have been bamboozled if you were a betting man. But lets get right into and go through some of the games from opening day.
The Ravens are starting to lose their identity. For years the Ravens have been a smash-mouth football team, on both sides of the ball, but ever since Flacco touched $100 million, throwing the ball has become a primary attack for the Ravens. Flacco threw 62 passes against the Bengals and only 1 TD. Flacco made some plays, like the 80-yard bomb to Steve Smith Sr. but he also had some bonehead plays. To end the first half, Flacco wasted the final 8 seconds scrambling around, eventually being sacked, leaving the Ravens with no opportunity to get some points. Bonehead plays like that is why we can't put Flacco into that "Elite" status.
The defense played well, holding the Bengals to 5 field goals, but gave up the winning TD to AJ Green, who I am declaring now as the Ravens killer.
Ravens only ran the ball 17 times for 84 yards. While Ray Rice serve his two game suspension, Benard Pierce was supposed to be the premier back, instead he was benched. Justin Forsett came in to replace Pierce and he did a great job, even though he only carried the rock 11 times. The game was never out of reach to the point where the Ravens had to pass the ball instead of pounding the rock. Next week the Ravens will see the Steelers on Thursday night and hopefully 62 passes is not in the game plan.
Tom Brady is now 6-7 vs the Dolphins in Miami. I actually think the Patriots will struggle this season, so I'm not surprise to see them taking an L in the 1st week. Even with all that money they spent in the off-season, I still don't trust them for some reason. I think the NFL has officially caught up to them and there schemes. The Dolphins are off to a good start in the division with this victory. Ryan Tannehill didn't have a great game but connected with Mike Wallace 7 times, one of which was a TD. Wallace last season was frustrated because he didn't have many passes thrown his way but I expect him and Tannehill to fix that problem this season.
Defensively, the Dolphins look like they will be top tier. They forced 2 fumbles and sacked Tom Brady 4 times, Cameron Wake with 2 of them. Some say the AFC East is the weakest division but I think it is better than it was in years past. The Jets are better, Dolphins are better, and Bills are up-n-coming. Patriots will not run through this division like they normally do and don't be surprised if they don't walk out with the crown.
Easily the Best game of the day. Saints come into this season as the favorites for the NFC South but they will have to start off 0-1 in the division. Falcons have to make up big time for the terrible season they had last year and this was a good way to open up the season in front of the home-crowd. Matt Ryan had the best game of his career, completing 72% of his passes, 448 yards in the air, and 3 TDs. 9 players caught passes from Matt Ryan, and even though Julio Jones led all receivers with 7 catches and 116 yards, newly acquired Devin Hester was the biggest x-factor. He will definitely make the Falcons passing game more lethal than it already was. Hester caught 5 passes for 99 yards, mostly working the middle of the field.
The Saints are still in good shape despite the loss. This was a great game that could have gone either way. Marques Colston did cost them game with his fumble but that won't happen often when you think about the caliber of player he is. Plus, you have to give credit to William Moore, who stripped Colston from behind, easily the biggest play of the game. I do think that secondary will be their Achilles heel and today showed it. The youth and inexperience will show frequently up until the latter end of the season. I expect the Saints' to return next week with a win against the Browns.
Since 2006, I have watched Tony Romo as the quarterback of my favorite NFL team and since 2007, I have seen Romo make the most worst plays at the worse times. Yet I would always defend Romo because he did make good plays and puts up elite QB numbers but he I can always count on him and the Cowboys to let me down. Today may have been my breaking point. The first play of the game the Demarco Murray fumbles the ball which led to a 49ers defensive touchdown. That's how our 2014 season start. Then add 3 first half interceptions by Romo, all of which were thrown into double coverage, plus a defensive that can't stop a junior college team. Luckily for me, I came into this season with little expectations for my boys. I see a 6-10 record in our future, one, because we can't stop nothing on defense, and two, I don't think Tony Romo can make those good plays anymore. This will be a long season for me.
- Browns 27 @ Steelers 30 - Browns scored 24 unanswered in the 2nd half to tie the game up at 27 in the 4th quarter. Steelers wasn't ready to lose their home opener, Ben Rothelisberger going 3-4 for 33 yards in the final 47 seconds to set up a game winning 41-yard field goal by Shaun Suisham.
- Titans 26 @ Chiefs 10 - Chiefs was outplayed on all levels in front of the home crowd. Only 245 yards total offense, 1-12 on 3rd down, and 22 minutes time of possession. Alex Smith threw 3 INTs and Jamaal Charles rushed 19 yards on 7 carries.