Week 1 of the NFL regular season turned out as expected: a day with interesting duels, fights and results that make it difficult to make predictions for Week 2.
Nobody expected the Packers to fall as they did to the Saints, that the Raiders, despite playing at home, would take the win from the Ravens in overtime, that the Steelers beat the Bills in Buffalo or that the Cowboys would fight them until the last seconds to the Buccaneers.
In any case, Week 1 left several topics for analysis and like every year, ESPN Deportes experts debate the most interesting ones, in addition to giving their predictions of all the games.
NOTE: The picks of each expert are in capital letters and bold.
WHAT FEELINGS DOES THE DEFEAT OF THE PACKERS AND THE PERFORMANCE OF AARON RODGERS AGAINST THE SAINTS?
SEBASTIÁN M. CHRISTENSEN / Twitter: @SebastianMCESPN
Of caution. I’m not one of those who thinks all his actions in the offseason had a bearing on Aaron Rodgers’ poor performance. The Green Bay Packers exhibited the problems shown in previous years when they were physically dominated by the 49ers. In this case, they were dominated in the trenches by the Saints. What’s even worse is the fact that they had two rookies on the offensive line that we anticipated would be a problem and those doubts came true. That’s why I say caution, because the reality is that Aaron Rodgers is going to be fine and the Packers should win their division. Of course, if they aspire to be candidates, the offensive line must improve.
ALFONSO MANCILLA / Twitter: @poncho_mancilla
The rule almost never fails: Week 1 of the regular season is the most difficult to forecast and also the most difficult to evaluate in its proper dimension. I say this, because regarding the bad start of Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, there were those who saw them for the Super Bowl, now they are eliminated. Undoubtedly, the feeling left by the loss to the Saints is of concern, but for a veteran like Rodgers and with the talent that he has on the roster, I maintain that they will recover from the bad start. From there to their return to the No. 1 team spot in the NFC will depend on precisely Rodgers concentrating on playing and forgetting for now his longing to get out of the team.
IVIS ABURTO / Twitter: @IvisAburto
The feeling is that this could be a team with a serious fracture in the locker room and that is resented by the fans in Green Bay. Beyond the understanding of the players on all teams that the NFL is a business, it shouldn’t be nice for whoever is supposed to be their leader publicly says they want to leave the team for whatever reason.
It is clear the bad moment that Rodgers lives with coach Matt LaFleur and management and proof of this are the reactions of the quarterback and the coach after the loss to the Saints with some contradictions.
Now, well, a bad, very bad game, anyone can suffer. It is striking that the reigning MVP and a team that reached the conference final eight months ago had a dismal overall performance in Week 1 of the following season.
Any improvement that the Packers show after what was taught against the Saints will be remarkable and they will surely raise their level considerably, and what better than having the Detroit Lions as a rival to straighten the way.
PABLO VIRUEGA / Twitter: @PabloViruega
A loss or a game does not define the rest of the season. Green Bay remains one of the favorites within the NFC. What is surprising is not the loss or the difference in the score but the attitude or the body language of Rodgers. It seemed that he cared little how badly the team played, including himself.
The good news for Green Bay fans is that their next game is divisional and against the weakest team in the NFC North, Detroit. He is the perfect rival to get out of the bad start and silence criticism, because there is no better formula to stop all that resentment towards Rodgers, with all the preseason novel, than with triumphs, although there are victories that can hide many flaws.
This could be one of them.
CARLOS NAVA / Twitter: @TapaNava
The feeling is that the team arrived ill-prepared to play in almost every respect on both sides of the ball. The offense was out of sync and the defenders seemed unaware of the maneuvers, allowing too much separation for the receivers and putting little pressure on Jameis Winston, the Saints quarterback.
Aaron Rodgers looked off-key and lacking in precision, even though he had time to pitch. He seemed to have no energy or desire to play.
SHOULD WE CONSIDER THE CONTENDING STEELERS SERIOUS TO THE AFC NORTH TITLE AFTER THEIR VICTORY AT BUFFALO?
SEBASTIAN: I do not believe it. Statistically, the first week has less influence than in other years, since we will have 17 days. The Steelers defense will be dominant throughout the season and will keep them alive in every game. Ben Roethlisberger, and especially that offensive line, raise a lot of doubts. Even though they both lost on opening day, I think the Browns and Ravens are one step ahead of Pittsburgh.
ALFONSO: It’s a story we already know with the Steelers and coach Mike Tomlin: They are able to show themselves as well as they did against the Bills one week and then lose to a New York Jets level team.
Without a doubt, the defense showed that it is to charge the team, but it is not clear if the offense will be enough to sustain and do not pass 2020 with a thoroughbred level start and a jagged closure.
IVIS: Victory over the Bills can be seen as a glass half full or half empty. Although he visited and after going down by 10 points, it is a reality that Buffalo and Josh Allen did not play at the level that took them to the AFC Final last season, that is, the Steelers could well take advantage of to beat a very good team that was going through a bad time.
On the other hand, that comeback, with the way Pittsburgh’s offensive line was battered for much of the game, may be a warning that this attack will do enough to support a defense that didn’t need to be heavily packed. charge (more than four items) to pressure Allen.
The Steelers won’t catch up with Baltimore and Cleveland in the AFC North, but they will be a more uncomfortable headache than some of us think.
PABLO: It is still a very important victory against a contender in the AFC and that could serve as a tiebreaker, in addition to the fact that two of the three rivals in the Division lost (Ravens and Browns). I don’t take any of the credit from Pittsburgh’s victory, but four periods do not determine the rest of the season and the Steelers know it well after starting last year with victories and being eliminated in the first round of the Playoffs.
Pittsburgh must be more productive on the offensive end, at least to find the right balance, as they have one of the best defenses in the NFL, but their attack hit the field of the Bills until the third quarter.
Not all games can be won with the combination of the three phases: defense, special teams and offense. That’s the perfect formula and the one that coaches like best, but it is unlikely to be achieved every week.
CHARLIE: Pittsburgh should never be ruled out in the competition for the divisional title. They are a disciplined team that knows what it plays, particularly on the defensive end, where they allow yards, but close in the red zone.
It is still too early to know if they are really a serious contender, especially since we have seen that at the end of the season, with a veteran quarterback, they seem to suffer a sensitive loss of play.
WILL DALLAS BE ABLE TO FIGHT A PLACE IN PLAYOFFS WITH WHAT WE SHOWED IN WEEK 1?
SEBASTIAN: No. We already knew that the Cowboys offense would be elite with Dak Prescott behind center. What we wanted to see was if their defense took a quality leap and, honestly, despite the fact that they forced turnovers and were opportunistic, they didn’t have any tackles for loss of yardage in the whole game and Tom Brady had all the time in the world. in the pocket.
I understand that Ryan Fitzpatrick’s injury can hurt Washington, but I still see those led by Ron Rivera as the most complete team in the NFC East.
ALFONSO: It will reach him, not because he had a really contending team but because the East of the National is as bad as watermelon water for a hangover.
The Cowboys showed they have the offensive level that will allow them to average more than 24 points per game, but their defense is not there to challenge the heavyweights of the league and much less after the injuries that this week accumulated, so, as it says the classic saying, “Hurt, Margarito.”
IVIS: Same case as Pittsburgh with Buffalo. The Buccaneers did not show their best version in Week 1 and even so, they were able to take the victory against some Cowboys that, with Dak Prescottm, we knew they would improve on offense.
The defense remains the biggest question mark, but the level shown in Week 1 will reach Dallas to fight for the NFC East title due to the weakness of the sector.
Remember that with the potential that exists in the NFC West, where the four teams project a winning record and even reach the Postseason, the other divisions may only put the champions of the sector in the Playoffs.
PABLO: It will reach him, because it is the team with the best talent on offense in the NFC East, despite the fact that its defense remains the biggest unknown and look how much it improved a lot compared to last year and managed to recover balls against the Bucs.
The reality is that the team can compete in its division, because it is the weakest in the NFL.
In Week 2, Dallas has to travel to Los Angeles to face the Chargers, a duel for which it is disadvantaged, but can win tightly against a team that, for many, can reach the Playoffs.
It could be a significant victory and one that begins to make a difference in the NFC East.
CHARLIE: They are considered favorites to win a playoff ticket from before the first postseason game, thanks to the Eastern Division of the National Conference in which they play, but if they really want to transcend, they will have to attend to details that have become chronic such as lack of pressure. to the quarterback, leave points on the table and they must better establish their offensive line to help runners run and not be focused on helping blocks, especially when the pressure comes to Dak Prescott.