Sorting the NFL Sunday Pile, Week 1: Urban Meyer experiment ugly, Kyler leaps into MVP convo, overreactions

Week 1 of the NFL season introduced a ton of untamed motion and shocking outcomes. The NFL hardly ever fails to ship, so it should not be a shock. It additionally should not be a shock if among the issues we noticed in Week 1 find yourself being a mirage and do not play out over the course of the 12 months.

With that in thoughts, let’s discover some potential overreactions to the primary week of the season and determine whether or not or not they’re legit. 

Kyler Murray is prepared for an MVP season 

Following on the heels of 2018 (Patrick Mahomes) and 2019 (Lamar Jackson), everybody needed to crown a younger, hyper-athletic quarterback to make a large leap ahead in 2020 and take dwelling the {hardware}. The best choice was Kyler Murray, however the Cardinals did not even make the playoffs. A shoulder damage derailed the Cardinals’ playoff hopes and Kyler’s total efficiency and dammed up the 2021 hype for the Arizona QB. Sunday’s throttling of the Titans opened these floodgates — Kyler was magical towards Tennessee en path to a five-touchdown sport (4 passing and one dashing). He was flying everywhere in the discipline, like he had limitless turbo increase and making some absurd throws, together with one in all two scores to Christian Kirk

This was on third and quick and ended up being the kill-shot for Arizona. Kyler did not even step into the throw — he took his drop-back and launched off his again foot.  

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It wasn’t the precise mechanics you need out of your quarterback, however clearly Kirk had his man beat and Kyler knew he simply wanted to get the ball into the tip zone. That is outstanding arm power and accuracy from that physique place. It is Mahomes-esque, actually. Add in that skillset with a quick-twitch burst he possesses in his legs, and it is simple to see why individuals begin foaming on the mouth for an enormous leap from Kyler. 

You understand how gamers elevate the ball within the air once they know they’re getting throughout the objective line as a runner? Kyler did it on a bootleg earlier within the sport … from the 10-yard line. 

OK, high-quality, it was the 8.5-yard line however you get the purpose. 

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The Titans protection may very properly be horrendous. However that feels much more like an overreaction than the concept of Kyler launching into a unique tier as a quarterback this season. 

Jameis Winston is an improve over Drew Brees

Skepticism all the time surrounds Jameis Winston, one of many extra polarizing quarterbacks in recent times. And even with preseason proof of his potential success within the Saints offense, there have been nonetheless loads of questions being requested. Winston answered these in Week 1 with a powerful common season efficiency towards a key NFL rival, because the Saints whipped the Packers 38-3 (excellent news, Inexperienced Bay, you beat Tampa Bay by nearly the identical rating — 38-10 — final 12 months they usually received the title, so perhaps it is a signal). 

Winston’s yardage whole wasn’t gaudy, however I might posit that is factor. He was environment friendly, he was good and he was largely mistake-free. Individuals scoffed after I recommended Winston may very well be an improve over Drew Brees, however Winston’s PFF passing grade from Week 1 would have certified as Brees’ second-highest mark of your entire 2020 season. 

The previous No. 1 total choose solely tried a single move past 20 yards — his late, let’s get him over 100 passing yards and actually bury these guys landing throw to Deonte Harris — however he was deadly on intermediate throws, going 5 of 6 on throws between 10 and 20 yards, with three of these passes going for touchdowns, per Next Gen Stats

Early within the sport, when Winston did not see one thing he preferred, as a substitute of forcing throws or making an attempt to scramble round and purchase time, he simply took off working. It was a unique part of his sport. He appeared hellbent on not making errors, nearly as if Sean Payton’s mantra about his quarterbacks not making errors had been laser-etched into Winston’s mind. Or perhaps Payton simply brainwashed him. That might clarify his postgame quote.

It is all sunshine, roses and scrumptious finger-crossed W’s when there is no errors and the Saints are rolling. Confronted with harder defenses, will Winston proceed to take what he is being given and never revert into the Jameis of outdated? I am optimistic for his 2021 season as a result of Payton is a QB Whisperer and it seems Winston purchased into altering the best way he performs. If that is the case, the Saints are going to appear like probably the most undervalued crew of your entire offseason. 

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Aaron Rodgers is orchestrating a conspiracy

That is my favourite overreaction/insane take of the 12 months by far. Not simply in sports activities, however in life. I prefer to name it ArodAnon: basically Rodgers returned to the Packers regardless of wanting a commerce with the intention to take down the group from the within. He is again to stink the joint up and get everybody fired. It is solely becoming he appears precisely like Rust Cohle. 


I *assume* I’m joking about this concept, however there are lots of people on the market mentioning and, it will seem, some taking it critically.

Once more, this is not actual. Aaron Rodgers desires to win a Super Bowl. He desires to mild up the NFL like he did final 12 months en path to profitable MVP. He isn’t tanking this 12 months to get everybody fired. Even when he did … everybody is not getting fired. Who’s firing them? Maude from Cedarburg? 

Extra doubtless this can be a case of the Saints coming in sizzling, enjoying nice protection, pressuring Rodgers and the Packers not having any rapport early within the season on account of what was a tumultuous offseason and a scarcity of labor collectively within the preseason. 

Count on a fast bounce-back towards the Lions subsequent week on Monday evening. If it in some way does not occur, although, cue up the P-Arod speak. 

The NFC East is extensive open

Heading into the 12 months, the widespread perception amongst soccer observers was this division was a two-horse race between Washington and Dallas, with the Giants probably enjoying the position of sleeper and the Eagles rebuilding after buying and selling Carson Wentz. Not so quick, my pal.

Issues obtained a reasonably large shakeup over Week 1, with Ryan Fitzpatrick struggling a hip damage which is able to sideline him for a number of weeks minimal (WFT put him on IR Monday). Washington is declining to amass Cam Newton right now, so it is Taylor Heinicke time. Heinicke was really actually good within the playoffs and acquitted himself fairly properly towards the Chargers on Sunday. It is potential this is not a large downgrade, however it actually ought to remind us of the fragility of NFL teams — so many people liked Washington due to Fitzmagic’s addition and now, poof, it is gone. 

In the meantime, the Eagles offense appeared superior underneath Jalen Hurts and with Nick Sirianni pulling the set off. The subsequent few weeks will inform us whether or not that was the Eagles being good or the Falcons being horrible (these issues aren’t essentially mutually unique both) however I am inclined to provide Philly the advantage of the doubt. 

Hurts was given some actually good RPO performs to make the most of his legs and get him the perfect appears potential, Miles Sanders appeared explosive and the receiving trio of DeVonta Smith/Jalen Reagor/Dallas Goedert appears like a legitimately top-end trio. Smith, particularly, took over the sport for a stretch within the center because the Eagles prolonged their lead. Hurts and Co. may have hung 50 factors if the Falcons bothered to point out up on offense in any respect. Regulate that officiating crew shifting ahead — they known as a TON of penalties on this sport towards each offenses: 26 for 188 whole yards between the 2 groups. Even when the penalties had been dedicated, that is a TON and makes me assume it may have been particular crew associated. 

At any price, I digress. The Eagles are going to be an issue on this division. So are the Cowboys, so long as they will move shield and hold Dak Prescott on the sphere. Washington you possibly can’t write off understanding what we noticed final 12 months. 

So what in regards to the Giants? I would not blame Giants followers for panicking after a disastrous dwelling debut however I feel we have to give the Broncos protection some credit score. At numerous factors we noticed flashes from the protection, flashes from the receivers (Sterling Shepard, Kenny Golladay and Darius Slayton all popped at factors) and Daniel Jones was, properly, himself. If the Giants cannot shield him, he most likely will not keep away from turnovers, however he had some possibilities on this one and the Denver protection was simply an excessive amount of. I am lowest on the Giants of all these groups now, however let’s have a look at how they appear Thursday evening earlier than we simply utterly quit on them. 

There is a lengthy solution to go on this division. 

The City Meyer experiment is a catastrophe

Perhaps the largest stage for an overreaction within the NFL throughout Week 1. A few of us had been everywhere in the Texans (you’ll have been too in case you listened to the Pick Six Podcast) as a result of it does not make sense for the Jaguars to be favored on the highway coming off a one-win season with a rookie quarterback and rookie coach. The Texans are a crew filled with NFL gamers and there are numerous veterans there they usually put it on Jacksonville in a nasty approach. 

Trevor Lawrence threw for 300 yards and three touchdowns however he additionally had three picks and put up a ton of rubbish time stats. Jacksonville basically gave up 37 factors to Tyrod Taylor, Mark Ingram and Brandin Cooks. If that protection is that this unhealthy towards Houston, it is going to get obliterated by extra harmful offenses. Which suggests we will see Lawrence throw roughly 700 instances this 12 months. 

It actually does not seem there’s gonna be stability on this offense — Carlos Hyde led the crew with 9 carries for 44 yards. Is that the plan? Let Carlos Hyde eat? As a result of that does not really feel like a good way to dominate on the bottom. 

Earlier than the video games on Sunday, CBS Sports activities NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported people are already sick of Urban’s college-style coaching approach in Jacksonville. Dropping a bunch of video games goes to go over poorly with Meyer and Lawrence. They’ve by no means handled it earlier than. 

May every little thing unravel in Jacksonville because the losses pile up? Is that this Steve Spurrier 2.0? It is approach too early to name the experiment a failure. There are all the time odd Week 1 outcomes that find yourself being outliers in any case. However Jags followers ought to have their radar up for the way the crew responds to future struggles. | Sorting the NFL Sunday Pile, Week 1: City Meyer experiment ugly, Kyler leaps into MVP convo, overreactions


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