Around 3 pm every Sunday during the NFL season we enter what Scott Hanson has brilliantly coined “The Witching Hour”. That’s where loses become wins and wins become loses. On Sunday, during the witching hour, all Hell broke lose. A career day in south Florida from what can be a dangerous offense, a 13-point comeback in about two minutes in Cleveland and the beginning of a new era capped the early contests. The later window saw a 20-point comeback in Vegas, Cooper Rush improve to 2-0, a resilient effort from a veteran in his first win with his new team, Super Bowl Champs stave off disappointment and a unfortunate injury to a second year signal caller. Another fun-filled Sunday with so many photo finishes, it’s a lot to unpack. Atlas, it is Monday and Week 2 ends once tonight’s bouts are done. So, can I overreact to a few storylines ? Yes? Thanks, I appreciate that.
If Flacco can get one more win before Zach Wilson gets back, the Jets could be in a position to turn heads. The AFC East handled business on Sunday going 3-0 with two teams making double digit comebacks in the final quarter. This is about the New York Jets, the team that made their historic comeback in the blink of an eye. After Nick Chubb’s third TD run the score was 30-17 with 1:55 left. After a TD and a successful onside kick Joe Flacco found rookie Garrett Wilson for the go-ahead score. Wilson had a big day (8 rec, 102, 2TDs) and his rapport with Flacco reminds me of the one he had with Torrey Smith in Baltimore. If Flacco can play as well as he did today next week against Cincy, he can have the jets at 2-1 before Wilson is scheduled to comeback in week 4. The Jets won’t scare many teams when you come across them on the schedule but this team fights hard. We’ve seen this type of turnaround every year. This could be the start of something.
What the hell happen in Miami? Tyreek Hill, Jaylen Waddle and Tua Tagovailoa is what happened. The Dolphins were down 28-7 at half and then 35-14 in the fourth. Here comes Tua with 4 touchdown passes in the quarter, two of which went to Tyreek Hill. This receiver pair could be up there with the likes of Harrison/Wayne and Bruce/Holt when it’s all said and done. The duo combined for 22 catches, 371 yards and 4 touchdowns. This team is in for some fireworks next week against the Super Bowl favorite Buffalo Bills. Could these two games against division rivals lead to a match in January? The jury is still out on that but this game does a lot for the confidence of this young team. Baltimore, on the other hand, has to figure out the rushing game sans Lamar Jackson as well as figure out what’s going on in the secondary. Man coverage didn’t work, zone coverage was even worse. The communication broke down way too many times to allow Tua and football’s version of the splash brothers back into the game. Splash play after splash play allowed by Baltimore’s secondary this game from an easy win to a thriller comeback victory for the home team. Baltimore has an inconsistent Patriots squad next week so there’s no time to dwell on a upsetting loss.
Jimmy G is back in the fold. The 49ers are back in the Super Bowl conversation. Trey Lance was given the keys in the off-season. The No.3 overall pick from last year’s draft had total control of this team. On the second drive of the game Lance’s ankle went the opposite direction then the rest of his body as he was being tackled. Lance was carted off as coach Kyle Shanahan confirmed that it is a fractured ankle and Lance will miss the rest of season. In comes Jimmy Garoppolo. He lead the team to a super bowl in 2020 and a NFC title game last season. The 49ers are 31-14 in the regular season with Garoppolo at QB. With this team, Jimmy G can have the niners right back into the thick of things in the conference. The NFC should be on notice not because Jimmy G but because of what him being behind center means. Shanahan will make the most of what Garoppolo does best. He doesn’t lose with this guy as his quarterback. 49ers are my favorite to make another title game appearance.
The Giants are on top of the NFC East. At least after the first two weeks and before the Philadelphia Eagles play on Monday night. First year head coach Brain Daboll has this team believing in their selves. Saquon Barkley is playing like a pro bowler. Daniel Jones is doing a great job being a game manager. Their Monday night tilt next week against Dallas is an intriguing one. Dallas backup QB Cooper Rush is capable of running that offense. The Giants haven’t started a season 2-0 or held a record better than .500 at any point in the season under Daniel Jones. This new found success will take it’s first test next Monday night.
A couple of playoff teams from a year have disappointing starts to the year. The Las Vegas Raiders and the Cincinnati Bengals are 0-2 after losses in this weekend. Both of these teams were playoff teams last season, they actually squared off against each other in the wild card game. The Raiders need to balance their offense while the Bengals need to protect Joe Burrow. The Raiders were up 20-0 at the half. In the 2nd half and OT, Las Vegas was held to 66 yards on 21 plays. In Dallas, Cincy QB Joe Burrow was sacked six times on Sunday to bring his 2022 total to 13 in just two games. The Bengals addressed their line issues by making it a priority during the off-season. So far it’s not paying off well. The Raiders are already two games behind the Chiefs in the AFC West, that’s not where you wanna be in this division. The season isn’t over for these wild card teams yet but the clock is ticking as Week 3 provides must win games with these teams next week.