NFL Season Preview
September 13, 2017
NFL kickoff took place on Sept. 7, 2017. Superbowl 51 Champions the New England Patriots opened the season against the Kansas City Chiefs on a game of Thursday Night Football.
Most NFL fans expected the Patriots to reign this upcoming season given their famous comeback from a score of 3-28 to 34-28 in Super Bowl 50. However, New England quarterback Tom Brady and his team fell short in a final score of 27-42.
This raises the question on how a team can make one of the best comebacks in NFL history and fall short during a season opener, almost unheard of from this team.
Well, let’s take a look at the factors that contributed to this loss. Kansas City is a solid team with their defense and passing game. Julian Edelman, who is the wide receiver for the New England Patriots, is out for the season due to a torn ACL. This makes it hard for Brady and the team because Edelman was a key weapon during games.
News of Dallas Cowboy’s Ezekiel Elliott’s six-game suspension due to allegations of domestic violence triggered concerns from several fans about their fantasy football teams.
Whether or not Elliott stays suspended could affect the Cowboys’ season. He was a key component in their 13-3 season last year. Elliott had the eyes of many on him during the 2016 season, as he was on his first year playing and ended with 1,631 rushing yards — impressive for a first year running-back.
The Elliott case has since been appealed and the 22-year-old Ohio State alumnus played in the Cowboy’s season opener during Sunday Night Football against the New York Giants. Elliott had 104 rushing yards in the game, which is no surprise based on his stats from last year.
We can expect to see him in more games this season until his investigation is complete. This could be the player that helps to lead Dallas to victory.
Earlier this year, running back Marshawn Lynch, former Seattle Seahawks player, announced his return to the NFL after his 2015 retirement. Lynch is now the running back for the Oakland Raider’s which made many fans happy, as Lynch is an Oakland Native.
Lynch debuted with his new team against the Tennessee Titans where he had a total of 76 rushing yards. Many are excited to see how well Lynch plays this year. By the looks of it, he could do some damage with teammates such as quarterback Derek Carr and wide receiver Amari Cooper by his side.
The Jacksonville Jaguars gave a high quality performance in their game against the Houston Texans. Jacksonville ended last season with a 3-13 record, making them the bottom team in the AFC South division while Houston who in the same division was in first place with a 9-7 record.
Leonard Fournette could be the reason why. The rookie running back made his debut this game with 100-yards ran and a touchdown. The Jaguars also had 10 sacks and four turnovers.
Florida teams the Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers sadly could not compete this opening weekend due to Hurricane Irma taking place in and around their home state. The game was rescheduled to be played on week 11 instead.
Kickoff for the 2017-2018 season and it has been quite the shocking first week for several teams to say the least. Many teams that were suspected to do well this season did not succeed in the first game of the season, so with that it could be anyone’s game this year.
The Super Bowl 52 top contender could possibly be the Oakland Raiders. They could do some damage this year since have a strong offensive line with the addition of Marshawn Lynch, who is a Super Bowl veteran, and wide receiver duo of Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree.
Derek Carr is a solid quarterback with one of the most intimidating receiving groups in the NFL. Any strength could change due to injury throughout the season but Oakland has a high Super Bowl potential.