Week 1 of the NFL finally arrived, and it did not disappoint. For weeks the build-up to this NFL season has wet the appetites of football fans everywhere. When all the teams start 0-0, every fan has hope. Here is a quick recap of the first week of the 2010 NFL season.
The NFL season started on Thursday night with a rematch of the instant classic NFC Championship game of last year. The rematch wasn’t as terrific, but it yielded the same result- a Saints win over the Vikings. Brett Favre looked, well, old and the Vikings could only muster 9 points against the defending champs.
The action picked back up on Sunday with thirteen more games. The early games saw the Giants avenged the beating the Panthers gave them during the last game at the Old Meadowlands Stadium. This time at the New Meadowlands Stadium, the Giants were able to solidify their shaky defense to win 31-18.
The Patriots opened the season in convincing fashion by beating up on the Cincinnati Bengals, 38-24. Tom Brady is perfectly healthy after a car accident early Thursday morning, he threw for 258 yards and 3 TDs with no INTs while completing 25 of 35 passes.
The Roethlisberger-less Steelers struggled on offense against the Atlanta Falcons, but Rashard Mendenhall was able to break free for a 50 yard TD run in overtime to give the Steelers a 15-9 win in a true defensive battle. On the complete opposite end, the Texans overcame their 1-15 record against the Colts, behind a monster performance by Arian Foster. Foster rushed for 231 yards (2nd most on opening day) and 3 TDs on 33 carries in the 34-24 win. Peyton Manning had an equally impressive game completing 40 of 57 passes for 455 yards and 3 TDs with no INTs.
The Titans gobbled up the Raiders in a 38-13 thrashing, while T-Rac (their mascot) gobbled up a cheerleader.
The most controversial game of the weekend occurred during the Bears – Lions game. The Lions led for most of the game, before the Bears scored a TD with less than 2 minutes left in the 4th quarter. The TD gave the Bears a 19-14 lead. The Lions promptly drove down the field and Calvin Johnson
caught the game-winning TD in the corner of the end-zone. failed to catch the game winning TD because of a bogus NFL rule. Jason Lisk at TheBigLead.com does a great job breaking down the NFL’s going to the ground rule that cost the Lions the game. See for yourself:
That’s a touchdown, if I do say so myself.
The rest of the early games saw the Dolphins beat the Bills, the Bucs beat the Browns, and the Jaguars beat the Broncos.
The late games were equally entertaining unless you are a San Francisco 49ers fan. The game started out exactly how the 49ers planned. The first Seahawks play from scrimmage was an INT and the 49ers jumped out to a 6-0 lead. That is where the fun ended, the Seahawks scored 31 unanswered to obliterate the 49ers. Pete Carroll had a successful return to the NFL and the Seahawks told the NFL to not just give the NFC West title to the Niners.
The Eagles and Packers game was the most entertaining of the trio of late games. Kevin Kolb was taken out of the game when he received a concussion after a Clay Matthews hit. Michael Vick filled in for Kolb and kept them in the game. Vick completed 16 of 24 passes for 175 yards and a TD with no INTs, while also rushing for 103 yards on 11 carries. Vick looked like he was back in Atlanta and I still expect him to start at least one game (with Kolb healthy) before the season is over. The Eagles ended up losing 27-20, but Vick was certainly entertaining to watch. Now the Eagles have a question, should Vick be the starter? I think so, but Andy Reid said after the game that Kolb will start if cleared to play.
The last late game of the afternoon saw Sam Bradford make his NFL debut against the Cardinals. Bradford was solid despite 3 INTs, in the 17-13 loss.
The Sunday Night Football game between the Redskins and Cowboys continued the solid week of NFL games. The Cowboys were statistically the better team in the game, but in the end the it doesn’t matter if you don’t walk away with a W. The Redskins were able to win the game 13-7. Many will question the Cowboys decision to attempt a Hail Mary from their own 36 yard line with 4 seconds to go in the first half. The play resulted in a fumble by Tashard Choice that DeAngelo Hall picked up and ran for a TD. The game ended in a fitting fashion for the Cowboys. The Cowboys played sloppy all game having received 12 penalties, and it was the third holding call on Alex Barron that negated the game winning TD pass to Roy Williams.
With all these great games on Sunday, Monday night couldn’t live up, right? Wrong. The two games on Monday Night Football were a perfect end to a great week of football.
The first game saw the Ravens beat the Jets 10-9. The game was a defensive battle on both sides, but one thing is for sure, the Jets still have work to do. Their offense looked horrible during the pre-season and it looked horrible once again tonight. The Jets only had 6 first downs in the entire game. The Ravens defense was tremendous, led by Ray Lewis. Lewis laid what might be the hit of the year on Dustin Keller in the 4th quarter. You have to watch this hit for yourself:
Keller will be feeling that in the morning.
The nightcap of the Monday Night Football doubleheader saw the Chiefs open the New Arrowhead Stadium with a win over division rival San Diego. The Chargers fell victim to the big play in the loss. The Chiefs’ young running back, Jamaal Charles, was able to break free for a 56 yard TD run in the first half and rookie Dexter McCluster returned a punt 94 yards for a TD (a team record). Outside of those two plays, the Chiefs offense didn’t do much. Their defense played well, specifically during the Chargers’ last possession in which the Chargers failed to score from inside the 10 yard line on 4 consecutive plays.
The week was filled with the unexpected as NFL Live host, Trey Wingo, tweeted:
5 of 8 division winners..and 7 of 12 playoff teams from last year.. lose week one
That’s the NFL, and it’s only week one. I can not wait for Week 2 and be sure to check back next week for the recap of all the action.
[Photo Credit: DayLife.com]
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