From Pete Rozelle to Paul Tagliabue to…you know…the current guy, it’s long been a joke that their idea of a perfect NFL would be an entire league where everybody is 8-8. Perfect parity throughout the National Football League. Well congratulations to them. Because I think they may have finally created it.
How else can you explain what we have seen over the first two weeks of the 2015 campaign? A team that stinks in week one is great in week two. A team that looked unbeatable in week one looks lost in week two.
We can start by looking at the Steelers. In their season opener against the Patriots, Pittsburgh couldn’t stop a nosebleed. Tom Brady, Julian Edelman, and Rob Gronkowski sliced through the Black and Gold defense like the Three Musketeers. This week the Steeler defense gathered five sacks. They actually (gasp) created a turnover and knocked the ball loose a few more times. They held San Francisco to 1-of-4 TD chances in the Red Zone while the offense went 5-5 following execution problems at Gillette Stadium. Basically everything that went wrong in week one ended up going right ten days later. Except one thing.
Looking at you Josh Scobee.
On the flip side, how about the San Francisco team Pittsburgh beat up? That same Niner defense which held Adrian Peterson to 31 yards rushing and the Vikings to just a field goal was carved up by Ben Roethlisberger and company to the tune of 453 total yards. And its proficient rushing offense that gobbled up 230 yards on the ground vs Minnesota posted a far more modest 111 yesterday against a Steeler D which was ravaged by running backs in the pre season.
But contrasting results weren’t restricted to Heinz Field. Many NFL observers thought the most impressive win of opening weekend in the NFC was St. Louis’ overtime victory against reigning conference champion Seattle. The Rams put 34 points on the board that day. Yesterday they barely got into double digits en route to a 24-10 in Washington against a Redskin team that looked incredibly bland seven days prior against Miami.
That’s the same Miami team that somehow managed to lose to Jacksonville yesterday after the Jaguars couldn’t get out of their own way against the Panthers last Sunday.
Speaking of teams that looked sharp in week one, only to crap out in week two, I submit the Titans for your approval. They parlayed a 42-14 win over Tampa into a two touchdown loss in Cleveland.
Oh, and those Bucanneers? They somehow went to New Orleans as nine point underdogs only to upset the Saints. And those Browns? They were humiliated by the perennial punchline Jets to start the season.
And maybe the only squad that looked worse than the Browns to start the year was Oakland who received a 33-13 pounding at the hands of the Bengals. Yet the Raiders pulled the rug out from under Baltimore who came to California as a solid favorite only to get lost in the Black Hole 37-33.
They only thing that seems to be clear is that the Patriots can still score and they are playing pissed off and that’s bad news for everyone. Aside from that…you figure it out! Because the clubs themselves certainly can’t seem to do so on their own.