All Brian Daball does is win. Meanwhile, the eventual winner, Tom Brady, is held up by his defense. And last season’s Super Bowl winners, the Los Angeles Rams, are back on the positive side of the WL ledger as the Atlanta Falcons’ crazy fourth-quarter rally fell flat.
Sunday did show a series of successful – and downright brilliant – comeback bids that highlight the unpredictable nature of this sweet league.
Here are my most important takeaways from NFL week 2, Schein Nine style.
1) These dolphins are pure fire
Back in March, I predicted that Miami would be the NFL’s Cinderella team in 2022. Earlier this month, I predicted that Miami would make the playoffs for the first time in six seasons. And last week I predicted Miami to ruin Baltimore’s home debut because Dolphins are simply better than Ravens.
And yet, even with all that, I, the captain of the 2022 Dolphins, left Miami to die in the third quarter on Sunday. With Lamar Jackson running 79 yards to the ground and putting the Ravens up 35-14, the game was over. At the start of Week 2, teams trailing 21-plus points in the fourth quarter were 0-710 points since 2011, according to NFL research. But then Miami (2-0) hit an assist that the franchise had been missing for years.
How about my boyfriend Tua Tagovailoa?! Four touchdowns in the fourth quarter?!?! It’s Tua! In the game, the third-year pro set career records for touchdown throws (six), completions (36), passing yards (469), and quarterback rating (124.1). Tagovailoa has always had talent; now coached and prompted by Mike McDaniel, who instilled confidence in the 24-year-old. And of course, he also has this dreamy duet.
Jaylen Waddle (11 receptions, 171 yards, 2 touchdowns) and Tyreke Hill (11/190/2) are the second tandem in NFL history to each have 170-plus receiving yards and two touchdowns in the same game. The only other time it happened? Back in 1942, when Don Hutson and Andy Uram set fire to Chicago Cardinals. Yes, it was a long time ago.
In the final quarter, the Dolphins beat the well-trained, button-down Ravens 28-3! Miami has world-class pace and playmakers who put pressure on defense and back up Tua brilliantly. Baltimore (1-1) lost despite Jackson’s exorbitant performance.
It wasn’t an accident. It’s the new normal in South Beach. McDaniel’s attack is just fantastic. The Miami defense exudes talent. What a victory. Get used to it Fin fans.
2) These cardinals do not expire.
Another game that I, like any other viewer, prematurely froze. By the break, Las Vegas led 20:0. A little context from the good folks at NFL Research: When the Raiders led 20-plus at halftime, they were 39-0; trailing 20-plus points at halftime, the Cardinals posted a 0–90–1 record. Hell, there’s a first time for everything.
Call it an epic raider choke. After all, it was the biggest lead in the history of the team. I was very disappointed in Las Vegas (0-2), the team I chose to make the playoffs. But give credit to Cliff Kingsbury and the Cardinals (1-1). And Kyler Murray, who threw and raced and bequeathed his team a 29-23 overtime victory. In the second half and on OT, Murray amassed 224 passing yards, a touchdown, a throw and a run, and even converted a two-point conversation that took an astounding 20.8 seconds from snap to payout. According to Next Gen Stats, Murray rushed for 84.9 yards per game!
Finally, let’s take a look at Isaiah Simmons for a bit. As one of the most publicized picks in the class of the 2020 NFL Draft, the No. 8 overall pick doesn’t quite fit the bill. But as the Raiders got close to field goal range in overtime, the linebacker completely crushed Hunter Renfroe, spawning Byron Murphy’s final game. Big game in a big place.
3) 49ers will be fine
I’m sick of Trey Lance, whose season ended with a broken ankle on Sunday. This will be his third year in a row that he barely plays football. Ugh. It’s hard to get better at the most important and toughest position in the game with such limited experience. Just brutal.
What about the 2022 49ers (1-1)? Well, thankfully, Jimmy Garoppolo ended the offseason unexpectedly where he started: in San Francisco. It’s Jimmy G’s team again. What does it mean? The Nine’s attack went fairly smoothly, with No. 10 returning to center, chasing recent demons against rival Seahawks (1-1) in a 27-7 win. With an experienced signaller, surrounded by a great coaching staff and arguably the best defense in the NFL, I foresee double-digit wins and a playoff return. This is a deep and talented roster. The 49ers used the “full insurance policy” and left!
4) Packers will be fine
The Green Bay no-show in Minnesota was one of the biggest surprises of the first week. However, I told the Packers fans to RELAX. And so, all the team needed to get back on track was a prime-time date with the Bears. They belong to Aaron Rogers. Just ask him. Rodgers rocked Chicago 1-1 again on Sunday night, completing 19 of 25 passes for 234 yards and two touchdowns, enough for a 131.1 passer rating. The 27-10 win improved Rodgers’ career record against rival Bears to 24-5. He has won each of his last seven games against Chicago, raising his touchdown-to-interception ratio to 18-0.
But the credit belongs to Green Bay Another Aaron is Mr. Jones for 170 yards and two touchdowns in 18 touchdowns. The running back is still one of the most underrated playmakers in the NFL. Meanwhile, the Packers’ defense looked just as we’d all expect from the start of the season. A week after being hit by Justin Jefferson, D Joe Barry did what he should have done against a Chicago hitter under Justin Fields, holding the Bears for 228 yards on offense.
5) NO the same old planes
I know that Robert Saleh keeps the checks, so I don’t think I need to remind him. I predicted the Jets would start 0-7.. And after the Zach Wilson injury, I made fun of the team for Joe Flacco being Plan B.
Who is laughing now? Flacco threw four touchdowns in New York’s 31–30 return win over Cleveland.
Now the Browns (1-1) deserve a lot of grief after they squandered a 13-point lead with 1:55 left. Cleveland’s mind-numbing play and game management was minor league. But the Jets (1-1) still had a 66-yard pass to Corey Davis, a side kick, and a 15-yard pass to rookie Garrett Wilson. The Green Gang is to be commended, even though Cleveland failed that game, it was insane. Learn this: According to CBS, NFL teams have lost 2,331 games in a row, 13-plus points behind in the last 2 minutes. Until the result of Sunday in Cleveland.
6) NO those old lions
This goes way beyond…