From Rodgers to Brees to Tolbert to Suggs from Newton to Urlacher to Janikowski to Brady, this first week of NFL play surely had no shortage of excitement.
On Thursday, the start to the 2011-12 NFL season was one to remember. Aaron Rodgers (27-35, 312 yds,
3 TDs) and Drew Brees (32-49, 419 yds, 3 TDs) had a quarterback duel for the ages. Randall Cobb and Darren Sproles both lit up Lambeau Field with kick return touchdowns. The Packers won at the last second, as Saints rookie Mark Ingram was stuffed at the goal line, and the Packers won in a thriller, 42-34.
As I said, the excitement department saw a lot of action this week.
On Sunday, the first day where almost every team in the NFL played, I was in pure disbelief at how great all of the games were. Usually only some of the results of games have significance, but on Sunday, every result was marking something significant. Here they are:
Panthers vs. Cardinals- Hello Cam! Cam Newton said hello to the rest of the NFL by throwing for a rookie record 422 yards against the Cardinals. The only other quarterback to throw for more than 400 yards in their NFL debut: Peyton Manning.
Texans vs. Colts- Life without Peyton: The Colts marked chapter 1 of life without Peyton with a 34-7 loss to Houston. If he doesn’t come back this season, 0-16 in Indy? I sure hope not.
Eagles vs. Rams- The Eagles proved to the world that they might just be a “dream team” in a 31-13 whipping of St. Louis.
Bills vs. Chiefs- The Bills routed the Chiefs, 41-7. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for 4 touchdowns. This exposed the fact that Fitzpatrick may be a sleeper top ten quarterback this year.
Bengals vs. Browns- The Bengals won, 27-17 over their fellow statesmen. This win gave life to Cincinnati, whose preseason expectations, to say the least, weren’t so optimistic.
Bears vs. Falcons- The Packers may have won the Super Bowl last year, put what people forget is that the Bears won the division. This is their reminder to those folks who have forgotten.
Ravens vs. Steelers- In the extremely tight battle to see who is the best in the AFC North (Ravens or Steelers), the Ravens showed who’s boss in a 35-7 rout of the Steelers.
Chargers vs. Vikings- The Chargers “Charged up” San Diego, and may have erased the curse that has followed them for the past 5 years: They can never seem to start the season well. Is it over? Looks like it.
49ers vs. Seahawks- Rookie Head coach Jim Harbaugh a winner in his debut. Now that he has defeated the former division Champion Seahawks, he has created a renewed sense of hope in San Francisco.
Redskins vs. Giants- The Redskins have been the runt of the NFC East. A 28-14 win over the accomplished Giants may end the era of failure in Washington.
Jaguars vs. Titans- This one is more about the losing team than the winning one. Chris Johnson only got 24 yards and no touchdowns. Is he worth the money he got paid, or will he continue to struggle? Stay tuned to find out!
Jets vs. Cowboys- J-E-T-S Jets, Jets, Jets! The Jets came roaring back from behind against the Cowboys, and could this be the year for Rex Ryan and the Jets? If they can close out games like this, the answer is yes.
The excitement didn’t end there, though.
Da, da, da, da, here comes Monday Night Football.
The 2011-12 Monday Night Football kick-off had two games. The first: Patriots vs. Dolphins.
This game was amazing. At the beginning, the Dolphins jumped out to an early lead. They proved as a challenge to the Patriots. But then came Mr. Brady. Tom Brady racked up a total of 517, yes 517 yards (a career high, and 5th best in NFL history) and 4 touchdowns. The Brady-led Patriots defeated the Dolphins 38-24, and even though the main story was Brady’s 517 yards, don’t forget about Chad Henne. Henne was under criticism, people said that he was not fit to start for the Dolphins, but in his first game this year, when he was on the quarterback hot seat, Henne racked up 416 yards and 2 touchdowns. Hands down, the game was amazing.
But wait, there’s more!
The Raiders took on the Broncos in the second game of Monday Night Football. The highlight of the game was that Sebastian Janikowski tied an NFL record with a 63 yard field goal. Only two kickers in NFL history have ever completed this truly amazing feat. The Raiders took the game, 23-20 in a thrilling
I compiled a list of offensive and defensive MVPs and LVPs for week one. Here they are:
Offensive MVP- Tom Brady (32-48, 517 yds, 4 TDs) Defensive MVP- Terrell Suggs (3 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 5 tackles)
Offensive LVP- Chris Johnson (9 carries, 24 yds, 0 TDs) Defensive LVP- Nolan Carroll (Gave up 160 yards and 2 TDs to Wes Welker)
Also, the 10th anniversary of 9/11 was on Sunday. America was touched by the players uniting as one country and it was truly an amazing day.
In all, these 3 days of football truly were amazing, but there still are many more games to be played.
What will happen, you may ask?
We’ll just have to wait and find out.
By Sam Brief