What makes the Eagles’ loss to San Diego even worse is the fact that they lost an opportunity to go into sole possession of first place in the NFC East. Every team in the division lost their Week 2 matchups, with the Redskins falling to the Packers, the Giants losing to the Broncos, and Cowboys going down to the Chiefs.
The Washington Redskins may be in the most trouble of the four teams. For the second straight week, Robert Griffin didn’t look right and the Washington defense was obliterated by one of the top offenses in football. Mike Shannahan’s group started off the game in 31-0 hole, allowing Aaron Rodgers to torch their defense for 480 yards and four touchdowns while Griffin and the offense couldn’t generate any points until the third quarter. There hasn’t been much to be encouraged about for this team.
The New York Giants just won’t stop turning the football over. After committing six against Dallas in Week 1, the New York offense gave the ball away four times (all Eli Manning interceptions). Tom Coughlin is also desperately searching for an answer to his running game. The team wanted David Wilson to be the guy, but he just can’t hang on to the football. They’re in such a desperate situation that they brought Brandon Jacobs back to add to their backfield mix.
The Cowboys turned the ball over twice, and weren’t efficient at all in their loss to Kansas City.The Chiefs only managed 17 points, but Dallas had to settle for field goals after several drives stalled. The run-pass ratio of Dallas was horribly skewed towards the pass, with Tony Romo dropping back 42 times with only 16 rushing plays in a close game.
Seattle’s Defense Stands Alone
Great defenses are rarities in today’s NFL.
There are still some pretty solid units around. The Chicago Bears force a lot of turnovers. The Houston Texans are still pretty good. But there’s only one unit in the entire league that I would truly consider a “great” defense, and that’s the Seattle Seahawks.
The Seattle defense is stocked with big, physical players that make plays and shut even the strongest offenses down. On Sunday night, this group took on the San Francisco 49ers, and made electric young quarterback Colin Kaepernick look like Blaine Gabbert. Kaepernick, who threw for over 400 yards and three touchdowns against Green Bay in Week 1, was held to just 127 yards with no touchdowns, three interceptions, and one lost fumble.
Oh and by the way, they were missing three key starters (Chris Clemons, Bruce Irwin, Brandon Browner).
While shutdown defenses are by and large becoming extinct in this league, its refreshing to see at least one unit that has a defense that’s good enough to dominate and win games for them.
Around The League Quick Thoughts
- Its been a really rocky start for the Super Bowl Champion Ravens. Baltimore just barely managed a 14-6 win over the Cleveland Browns, and may have lost star running back Ray Rice to a hip injury in the process. Joe Flacco managed just over 150 passing yards in the win.
- When Cam Newton entered the league as a rookie two years ago, I was very excited about his future and what his career might be. But ever since then, he’s been a letdown. Newton just hasn’t proven that he can win close games, as his Panthers fell 24-23 to the Buffalo Bills. Newton has now won just 13 of his 34 career starts, and only two of those wins have come from fourth quarter rallies.
- The Chicago Bears are off to a solid 2-0 start with a come-from-behind win over the Minnesota Vikings. That’s two weeks in a row now that Jay Cutler has rallied his team late in the game, and the Bears also had to overcome giving up touchdowns to the Vikings on a kick return and a fumble recovery.
- For the second straight week, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers suffered a heartbreaking loss. The Bucs played a strong defensive game against the New Orleans Saints, holding them to 13 points through most of the game. Linebacker Mason Foster gave Tampa the lead with an interception returned for a touchdown, but the team would allow the Saints to drive into field goal range to hand them their second-straight last-second loss.