Well…… what a great weekend of football. The division did pretty damn well (Sorry Broncos) overall. Considering we had no pre-season games and all of the rookies that started in the division, we saw some really good football.
Here are the grades for week one and the predictions for week two in the 101st season of the NFL (Fuck all of you for thinking I was at the first game).
Here is a terrifying thought, the Chiefs offense is even more explosive with the running game they now have. Andy Reid has to be absolutely loving this. Rookies running back Clyde Edwards-Halaire exploded in his first game with 138 rushing yards rushing and 1 touchdown. Patrick Mahomes was 24 of 32 passes (75%) for 211 yards and 3 touchdowns. The defense racked up 4 sacks, 3 tackles for loss and 1 interception. Harrison Butker was perfect with 2 field-goals and 4 extra points. This is what a complete team looks like (I just threw-up on my laptop)
When you score 16 points on the road with a new quarterback after losing your best defensive player and still find a way to win, that says something about the team. Austin Ekeler led the team with 84 yards on 19 carries while rookie running back Joshua Kelly contributed 60 yards rushing on 12 carries and a touchdown. Tyrod Taylor completed 16 of 30 passes (53%) for 208 yards. Hunter Henry led the team with 5 receptions for 73 yards. The defense had 3 sacks, 6 tackles for loss and 1 interception. Michael Badgley hit 3 of 4 field-goals and his sole extra point. Overall it was a solid performance with the defense leading the way.
Going on the road to the East Coast and getting a win is a great way to start the season for the Raiders. Josh Jacobs is a flat out monster! He had 93 rushing yards on 25 carries and 3 touchdowns to go with 4 receptions and 46 yards. Rookie receiver Henry Ruggs had 3 receptions for 55 yards to lead the team and 2 carries for 11 yards. Derek Carr complete 22 of 30 passes (73%) for 239 yards and a touchdown. The defense had 1 sack and 2 tackles for loss but came up with two huge stops in the 4th quarter when it mattered the most. Daniel Carlson was perfect with 2 field-goals and 4 extra points. The offense was great, the defense not so much.
Starting the season at home is great. Playing without your best offensive and defensive players, not so much. To top it off, Bradley Chubb is not 100% coming off knee surgery and Phillip Lindsay and AJ Bouye both went down early in the game. New edition Melvin Gordon had 15 carries for 78 yards and a touchdown to go with 3 receptions for 8 yards. Drew Lock completed 22 of 33 passes (66%) for 216 Yards and a touchdown. Noah Fant led the team with 5 receptions for 81 yards and a touchdown while rookie Jerry Jeudy had 4 receptions for 56 yards (with 2 big drops). This game was not as close as the score and the Broncos have a lot of work to do to get this thing turned around.
Denver Broncos at Pittsburgh Steelers
Most times game this early in the season don’t mean much, this one does for the Broncos. They cannot start the season 0-2. Unfortunately they are the walking wounded right now and heading to the East Coast to play a team the has their leader back in Ben Roethlisberger. With all the injuries and going up against this defense, things are not looking good for the Broncos.
Steelers 31 Broncos 20
Spread: +7.5 Broncos
Kansas City Chiefs at Los Angeles Chargers
Division games are always great and even better at the start of the season. This one however is not going to be very nice. The Chiefs are one of if not the most complete teams in the NFL, the Chargers, not so much. I think the Chargers will play hard but won’t be able to slow down this monster for the mid-west.
Chiefs 38 Chargers 17
Spread: +9 Chargers
New Orleans Saint st Las Vegas Raiders
So excited for the very first game at home for the Las Vegas Raiders in their new stadium AKA The Death Star. Unfortunately it is against a first ballot Hall of Fame quarterback in Drew Brees. The Raiders offense is good enough to win this game, the defense, not so much. This could be a true barn burner.
Saints 34 Raiders 27
Spread: +6 Raiders
Week 1: 3-1
A great NFL saying is simplicity itself: You are never as good or as bad as you looked in week one. This year that takes on an even bigger meaning considering there were no OTAs, mini-camp or pre-season games. By week 3-4 we will start to see some serious improvement in play on both side of the ball.
Sit back, relax and enjoy the ride! We are only getting started.