If there’s ever going to be a altering of the guard within the AFC, then Sunday’s go to to Jacksonville by the Patriots would appear an ideal time.
Besides whenever you take a look at the numbers that say Tom Brady doesn’t lose to the Jaguars.
Jacksonville had a 10-point lead at New England within the second half of the AFC championship recreation final January when Brady labored his magic, helped mightily by the Jaguars’ discomfort being so shut to creating the Tremendous Bowl. It shouldn’t have been a shock on this matchup: Brady now is Eight-Zero towards the Jags, the one AFC group and not using a win towards the five-time Tremendous Bowl champion and three-time league MVP. He has 19 TDs and two interceptions towards Jacksonville whereas finishing greater than 70 % of his passes for greater than 1,800 yards.
So fixing Brady, because it is for many groups, is a should for Jacksonville on this battle of opening-game winners that would wind up pivotal for the AFC playoffs.
“It’s going to be an emotional environment,” Brady stated. “I think everyone, whenever you play some of the best teams, you want to see where you’re measured up to, and that defense has been ranked very high all last year, and I could see why. We practiced against them. They were very good. They’ve got a lot of very talented players — some of the guys that are probably the best at their position. So, it’s going to be a great environment for football.”
Brady has 224 profession wins, one shy of the NFL document held by kicker Adam Vinatieri, whose Colts are at Washington.
Jacksonville could possibly be short-handed in a key space: operating again Leonard Fournette has hamstring points, and the Jags want a robust operating recreation to maintain Brady on the sideline.
T.J. Yeldon would get the beginning if Fournette can’t go.
“He has always been good,” coach Doug Marrone says of Yeldon. “I think he is more explosive. He’s stronger. He’s elusive. I think he can carry a load of carries.”
The weekend started with Cincinnati’s 34-23 residence victory over Baltimore. Andy Dalton threw 4 landing passes within the first half — three to A.J. Inexperienced — to assist the Bengals enhance to 2-Zero. The Ravens are 1-1.
Philadelphia (1-Zero) at Tampa Bay (1-Zero)
One cause the Eagles had the NFC’s greatest document in 2017 was a 6-2 street mark. They have been sloppy but victorious of their opener at residence towards Atlanta and haven’t performed since Sept. 6. Nick Foles will get the decision at quarterback once more with Carson Wentz nonetheless not prepared, although Philly’s operating recreation with Jay Ajayi, who had two touchdowns final week, and powerful protection might determine issues.
The Buccaneers come off a powerful upset win at New Orleans during which Ryan Fitzpatrick confirmed why he has been a top quality fill-in passer for years. He threw for a career-best 417 yards, 4 TDs, and had no interceptions towards the Saints. He additionally scored a dashing TD.
Kansas Metropolis (1-Zero) at Pittsburgh (Zero-Zero-1)
As ugly because the Steelers’ efficiency was within the rain in Cleveland, that’s how fairly Chiefs fan assume their workforce’s work was in Los Angeles.
However this is a nightmare matchup for KC: The Steelers have gained seven of the final eight vs. the Chiefs, who’re Zero-6 in Pittsburgh since 1986. Plus, the Steelers are 15-2 in house openers at Heinz Area.
Two of the NFL’s most dynamic wideouts go at it right here: All-Professional Antonio Brown for Pittsburgh, WR-KR Tyreek Hill for Kansas Metropolis. Don’t take your eyes off the sector.
Minnesota (1-Zero) at Inexperienced Bay (1-Zero)
Proper up till kickoff, the followers at Lambeau Subject will probably be holding their breath to see if Aaron Rodgers can go. Inexperienced Bay is in large hassle if he can’t, as final week’s heroic efficiency by A-Rod within the comeback victory over Chicago confirmed.
“Yeah, well, you know he walks on water, so I’m sure he’s going to play,” Minnesota coach Mike Zimmer stated.
The Vikings aren’t the Bears and gained’t possible be enjoying passively in the event that they get a lead. Not with that dynamic protection that handed Jimmy Garoppolo his first professional defeat within the opener.
Carolina (1-Zero) at Atlanta (Zero-1)
Not solely did the Falcons falter in Philly of their opener, that they had two vital long-term accidents with security Keanu Neal and linebacker Deion Jones. The protection stored them within the Eagles recreation whereas Matt Ryan struggled. Positive, he accomplished 10 passes for 169 yards to Julio Jones, however Ryan usually was off the mark.
Carolina has its personal damage woes, dropping star TE Greg Olsen with a foot drawback. Its protection was tremendous stingy towards Dallas, with LB Luke Kuechly in on 13 tackles.
Miami (1-Zero) at New York Jets (1-Zero)
Barring a tie — and everyone knows these by no means occur within the NFL, proper? — one among these groups will probably be a shocking 2-Zero Sunday night time.
The Dolphins come off the longest NFL recreation because the 1970 merger, outlasting Tennessee in 7 hours, Eight minutes, together with Three:59 in a number of climate delays. RB Frank Gore has 14,087 profession yards dashing and wishes 15 to surpass the Jets’ biggest runner, Curtis Martin (14,101), for fourth place on the NFL’s listing.
Sam Darnold threw a pick-6 on his first professional try, then reversed issues with aplomb at Detroit. The Jets’ protection deserves the very best accolades for making Matthew Stafford appear to be a clumsy rookie, one thing Darnold didn’t resemble past that opening move.
Cleveland (Zero-Zero-1) at New Orleans (Zero-1)
Oh yeah, they do have ties, which for the Browns is a monumental achievement contemplating they misplaced all 16 video games in 2017 and have been 1-15 the earlier yr. Oddly, the Browns overwhelmingly lead this collection 13-Four, profitable 5 of the final six conferences.
WR Michael Thomas had a Saints single-game document 16 catches final week for 180 yards and a rating. Drew Brees will goal him typically, typically towards rookie Denzel Ward, who had two picks of Ben Roethlisberger within the opener.
Arizona (Zero-1) at Los Angeles Rams (1-Zero)
All seven of the brand new head coaches misplaced final week, none extra distressingly than Steve Wilks at house towards Washington. QB Sam Bradford, the highest general draft selection by the Rams in 2010, now is the Cardinals’ starter, and he has an all-time nice receiver in Larry Fitzgerald. But Arizona was outclassed in its first recreation for Wilks.
No such issues for the Rams, who appeared robust in all phases at Oakland. A fear, although, is dropping All-Professional kick returner Pharoh Cooper to an ankle damage.
Oakland (Zero-1) at Denver (1-Zero)
The glow from the return of Jon Gruden as coach will fade into the Mile Excessive air if the Raiders put forth one other mediocre displaying on this bitter rivalry. Oakland struggled within the second half in falling to the Rams, with solely TE Jared Prepare dinner a constant constructive with 9 catches for a career-best 180 yards. The protection clearly missed Khalil Mack.
Von Miller was a terror towards Seattle: Miller had three sacks, two pressured fumbles and a fumble restoration. He’s one in every of three lively gamers (Robert Quinn, Terrell Suggs) with two profession video games with no less than three sacks and two pressured fumbles.
In all, Jon Gruden’s groups are 1-9 towards the Broncos, with the one win coming in Oakland in 2001.
Indianapolis (Zero-1) at Washington (1-Zero)
The final time Frank Reich coached in a recreation that counted, he helped Philly win a Tremendous Bowl. His Colts blew an enormous lead at residence to Cincinnati, however at the very least Andrew Luck is again behind middle. And Luck likes the look of Redskins burgundy: He threw for 370 yards, 5 TDs and one interception in his solely earlier recreation vs. Washington.
RB Adrian Peterson moved into 10th place all-time in dashing yards after gaining 96 final week at Arizona. Washington’s protection was stout and ranks second general.
Houston (Zero-1) at Tennessee (Zero-1)
After their lengthy, weather-related wait to ultimately lose in Miami, and a proper elbow damage to Marcus Mariota, the Titans might use a lift in a key early season AFC South recreation. Mariota ought to play for brand spanking new coach Mike Vrabel, who was an assistant in Houston the final 4 years beneath Invoice O’Brien.
The Texans have gained 9 of the final 12 towards Tennessee, and O’Brien is 6-2 towards the Titans. Houston misplaced at New England final week, however stored issues shut.
L.A. Chargers (Zero-1) at Buffalo (Zero-1)
So, first-round decide Josh Allen will begin and hope to keep away from one other debacle after the 47-Three defeat at Baltimore. Allen may have an extended leash. Keep in mind, Buffalo’s different QB, Nathan Peterman, threw 5 first-half interceptions in his begin towards the Chargers final yr. He was nearly as dangerous towards the Ravens.
The Chargers have gained three straight and 17 of the previous 22 conferences. They outscored the Payments by 113-44 in these three victories.
Detroit (Zero-1) at San Francisco (Zero-1)
It’s unimaginable to fathom Stafford being as terrible once more. He threw 4 picks, one returned for a landing by the Jets. His passes have been off the mark a lot of the recreation.
Now that 49ers QB Garoppolo has misplaced a recreation, perhaps the expectations within the Bay Space can be tamped down a bit. Hold a be careful for DL DeForest Buckner (2 half sacks at Minnesota) and LB Fred Warner, who led all rookies with 12 tackles final week and compelled a fumble.
New York Giants (Zero-1) at Dallas (Zero-1)
Straightforward to know why the NFL retains scheduling this matchup in prime time and why the broadcasting community loves it: massive audiences. This yr’s faceoff doesn’t have all that a lot allure contemplating each groups stumbled, notably with the ball, in dropping openers.
Of prime curiosity would be the operating backs, second general decide Saquon Barkley, who excited Giants followers together with his 68-yard TD burst in his debut, and Dallas star Zeke Elliott.
Seattle (Zero-1) at Chicago (Zero-1), Monday night time
So the 2 night time video games within the second week of the schedule function a mixed report of Zero-Four. YAWN!
Each groups misplaced shut ones on the street, with the Bears infamously blowing a 20-point lead at Inexperienced Bay to a hobbled Rodgers. Seattle gave up 475 yards at Denver and the often slippery Russell Wilson was sacked six occasions.
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