The first week of the NFL 2021 season included a little bit of everything. The Cardinals’ looked terrific in a big win over the Titans, with Kyler Murray guiding the way with five all-purpose goals. Tennessee, like another AFC force to be reckoned with, the Bills, fought throughout the day. Meanwhile, Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold faced up against his former team, the Texans surprised with a notable road win over Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars, and Carson Wentz’s debut in Indianapolis didn’t go as planned.
The Eagles crushed the Falcons, and Washington is fielding questions about quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick after he left the game with a hip injury. Minnesota and Cincinnati got to overtime, while the 49ers had to stave off a late Lions comeback attempt. Early in the evening, Jameis Winston and the Saints thrashed the Packers, Teddy Bridgewater, the Broncos got off to a good start, the Dolphins held off the Patriots, and the Chiefs beat the Browns again. The Rams’ Matthew Stafford capped off the night with a significant introduction. The Raiders had a wild, extra-time triumph on Monday Night Football, which was interestingly played in front of supporters in Las Vegas. Our NFL Nation journalists respond to everything, including the significant focus points and pending questions from this week’s action – and what it all means for the future. Furthermore, they each assess the master plan using their current group certainty rating – a 0-10 scale indicating how confident they are in the group’s future position due to the week’s events. Let’s get started.
- Before Sunday’s opening shot, the Pleasant Association received widespread notice in remembrance of the twentieth ceremony of the attacks on America on September 11, 2001. The NFL also released a touching accolade video voiced by celebrity Steve Buscemi, a former member of the FDNY. It struck the proper tone, given the country’s current issues. Twenty years may appear like a long time. Still, it feels like only yesterday when Commissioner Paul Tagliabue and the NFL worked tirelessly to investigate the crisis before supporting the country in its recovery.
- Each penny was earned by T.J. Watt. There are down wreckers on this guard, starting with the edge rusher who just signed a four-year, $112 million extension. Watt represented five of the group’s eight quarterback hits.
- It’s undeniable that the Steelers will need to move promising running back Najee Harris in 2021. They’ll be able to keep games tight and give Roethlisberger a chance to win in the fourth. He’s in his eighties and standing still. He’s a significant figure and has, on the other hand, thrived in every situation imaginable. There’s nothing Roethlisberger hasn’t seen, and his right arm still has enough clout to make another Super Bowl run.
- Jimmy Garoppolo, welcome back. After missing ten games in 2020, the San Francisco 49ers quarterback returned to the starting line-up – despite giving snaps to rookie Trey Lance – and improved his record against new Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff to 4-0.
- No one should bet against Kliff Kingsbury’s Cardinals, who beat the Titans by a score of 38 to 13. He has one of football’s most vicious personalities. Arizona’s victory over Tennessee is a foreshadowing of what is to come, not an outlier.
- All hail Jack Easterby! Texans 37, Jaguars 21! Although the Houston Texans are a train wreck, they’ll take this one.
- It’s rare for a coach to arrive in the NFL with more exhibition or modifying resources (in terms of draught picks and salary-cap space) than Urban Meyer has with the Jaguars. It’s unusual for a coach to get his first head coaching job with less exposure or under more unfavourable circumstances than the Texans’ David Culley did this season. However, you wouldn’t have referred to Sunday’s game as Houston brushed the entryways off Jacksonville, creating further doubts about Meyer’s readiness for his move to football’s most prestigious position.
- The Bengals defeated the Vikings by a score of 27 to 24. (OT), In Cincinnati’s win over Minnesota, Ja’Marr Chase proved to see a ball without stripes just fine: he grabbed five passes for 101 yards and a goal. This Bengals offense is going to be a lot of fun to watch. Isn’t extra time awfulness the same old thing when it comes to the Vikings?
- The Chargers defeated the Washington Redskins by a score of 20-16. With 400 completions in his first 16 starts, Justin Herbert is the most successful quarterback in NFL history. Los Angeles should make no apologies for its tarnished success.
- It’s only one game, but I was among those who wondered if the Jets would have been better off keeping QB Sam Darnold, trading out of the No. 2 pick in the draught to acquire additional choices, and surrounding him with the ability he’d never had in the NFL. We got a glimpse of what the new Carolina Panthers quarterback could be on Sunday, as he accounted for two touchdowns in a 1914 victory. His 234 throwing yards before halftime were the best 50 percent of his NFL career. His touchdown pass was intercepted by former Jet Robby Anderson, who moved to attack his former boss as soon as he got to the end zone.