With the NFL being two weeks in, there’s been some big performances both good and bad. While no one knew what to expect coming from last season to this drastically different season, no one expected the rookie class to be this good. Nor did they expect some veterans to play at the same level as some in their prime. While the veterans are impressive, this mainly pertains to the rookies and surprise performances in weeks one and two, as well as a few letdowns from week two.
Starting with week one, the Kansas City Chiefs rookie running back from LSU, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, surprised most with his outstanding performance. Rushing for 138 yards and one touchdown, Helaire gave Kansas City the upper hand in their opening game, taking pressure off of reigning Super Bowl champion Patrick Mahomes. On the defensive side of the ball, the second overall pick in 2019, Chase Young, had an impressive rookie showing with two solo tackles, one and a half tackles for loss, one and a half sacks and a forced fumble. Finally proving the nickname Minshew Magic correct, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback went an impressive 19 for 20 passes with 173 yards, three touchdown passes and no interceptions.
Week two had some equally impressive standouts. Following a last minute injury to starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor, the Los Angeles Chargers started rookie Justin Herbert out of Oregon. Herbert went on to throw an impressive 311 yards on 22 for 33 passing with one passing and one rushing touchdown while only throwing one interception in their loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. In the game of the week, Dallas Cowboys backup tight end Dalton Shultz came up clutch in their 20 point comeback against the Atlanta Falcons. Catching nine passes for 88 yards and one touchdown, he proved a good weapon and key player in the game.
While week two was fun, there were also some surprising letdowns during the week. Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins had one of the worst games of his career on Sunday. Going for 113 yards on 11 of 26 passing with no touchdowns and three interceptions, Cousins finished the game with a 15 quarterback rating. While his performance was bad, none could top the Atlanta Falcons blowing a 20 point lead to the Dallas Cowboys. Giving flashbacks to the 2017 Super Bowl in which they blew a 28-3 lead over the New England Patriots, the Falcons entered the fourth quarter leading and ended it losing to a last second field goal by Cowboys kicker Greg Zuerlein.
The first two weeks of the NFL have certainly been entertaining and the player performances more so. Some key players to look at this upcoming week are Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens and Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs as they face off on Monday Night Football. Be on the lookout for Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers in their Sunday night game against the New Orleans Saints. Finally look out for the leading MVP candidate Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks as he faces the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. This season of the NFL is only just getting started and these two weeks have only proven that.