Will the Real Baker Mayfield Please Stand Up

Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns, NFL, Uncategorized

Baker Mayfield is lost, and he’s running from the light. Many want to pin the loss Sunday night on Freddie Kitchens, and he deserves blame. But this L is Mayfield’s.

You cannot win in the NFL with poor quarterback play. The Browns have proved this for 20 years. You can hand wring and fist stomp about the coaching, receivers, offensive linemen, and defense. Success hinges on the quarterback. The good ones are in the playoffs; the great ones win Super Bowls. We’ve seen the results of bad ones.

Right now, Mayfield is bad. I think he will pull himself out of it, but his season has been hard to watch. He is the cause of the 1-2 record and the offense looking lost. Baker is the reason I felt this franchise was ready to overturn 20 years of misery, yet so far, he’s adding to it.

He’s inaccurate. Whether down field, or on check downs, his accuracy has disappeared, completing only 56.9% of his passes, 30th in the league.

He’s not comfortable in the pocket.

He’s been under pressure, but he’s running himself into it as well. Too often, Baker gets spooked at a small push by the defensive front and heads for the exit. Almost exclusively, he drops further back and to his right. This closes off the left side of the field as an option, forcing him into throwing to one side of the field.

He’s bailing. More options if he steps up in the pocket, or shuffles his feet to the right instead of turning and running

Watch Tom Brady, Patrick Mahomes, and Aaron Rodgers. The devil is in the details. Their footwork in the pocket is precise. Instead of scrambling at the first sign of trouble, they adjust their bodies away from the pressure, buying themselves the half second they need to find the open receiver. It’s a small but essential detail the great quarterbacks possess.

Footwork is key to avoiding the rush

He needs to step up in the pocket instead of running backward. When a quarterback backs up, the play is over. Unless they’re a scrambler, by reversing course they are taking themselves out of the play. Russell Wilson is one of the few in history to have success backing up in the pocket. By stepping up, Baker will improve his field vision, passing lanes, and accuracy.

I believe in Baker. He’s smart. A hard worker. He’s been an accurate passer in college and his rookie year. Many great quarterbacks slump their sophomore year. The Browns will not improve until he does, however.

The Browns are in the mist of the toughest part of the schedule. After Baltimore on Sunday, they have the 49ers, Seahawks, the bye, then the Patriots. After that, it eases.

At Broncos
At Steelers
At Cardinals
At Bengals

Plenty of wins there. If they can hang in the next four weeks, they should begin stacking wins.

The defense was outstanding Sunday night. Missing their captain, Christian Kirksey, and the starting secondary, they forced three turnovers on outstanding plays by Myles Garrett, T. J. Carrie, and Joe Schobert. Mack Wilson held his own replacing Kirksey. Steve Wilks blitzed more often than in the first two games of the year. It led to an average day from Todd Gurley and Jared Goff. With a front four as dominant as the Browns’, it makes the secondary’s job much easier. While the offense is rounding into shape, the defense must continue to carry the team.

It’s a big week. Heading to Baltimore, Kitchens and Mayfield are under the microscope. Both must perform better than they’ve shown. A loss to the Ravens would put them 1-3 and two games behind in the division.

Baltimore lost to Kansas City and looked average. They were out of the game after their first drive of the day yielded a touchdown, despite the final score. Lamar Jackson heaved two prayers that got answered, keeping the score close, and Kansas City seemed to sleepwalk through the second half.

The Ravens are flawed. Their defense lost last season’s leading tackler(C.J. Mosley), sack leader, and a Pro Bowler at safety(Eric Weddle). They did add Earl Thomas, maybe the best safety in the game. The Chiefs and Cardinals moved the ball against them at will. If Baker remains patient, there will be plays on the outside to Beckham and Landry. He needs to put the hype and the pressure behind him. A good outing on Sunday will cure many of his ills.

Offensively, the Ravens are Lamar Jackson. He is a crap shoot. One minute he’ll drop a perfect lob into Marquis Brown’s hands; the next he’ll rifle the ball five feet in front of Mark Andrews. The two Hail Mary balls he heaved Sunday should have been picks. The Browns D is better than Kansas City’s. They must take advantage when Jackson makes mistakes.

Keeping Jackson in the pocket is paramount. The Chiefs shadowed him on passing plays, dropping defensive tackle Xavier Williams off the line of scrimmage at the snap to mirror Jackson on a majority of plays. While Jackson sprinkled in a few highlights, holding him to 46 yards rushing was a victory for the Chiefs. The Browns should use this strategy. Mix it up. Use Mack Wilson, Olivier Vernon, and whichever safeties may play in different situations to shadow Lamar. Confuse him into mistakes. If the Browns can keep Jackson and Mark Ingram in check, and the offense can make improvements, they have a shot at winning in Baltimore.

The Whip Around

1.Chiefs Patriots Rams Saints
These teams are the class of the NFL. Other outfits have shown flashes, but none come close to the dominance of these four. The only loss between them is the Rams victory after Drew Brees’ thumb injury. A lot of season remains, yet, barring injury, it’s tough to foresee anyone other than these guys in the conference championships.

2. Colts Texans Cowboys Eagles Packers
The next tier, if one of the above should falter, these teams would be the best bets to slide up. The Packers defense has been phenomenal to this point. If Aaron Rodgers can put full games together, instead of halves, Green Bay will be a feisty out. The Texans are a high-wire act, and DeShaun Watson may be the best quarterback in the league this side of Patrick Mahomes. I still believe in the Eagles and not the Cowboys.

3. Jacoby Brissett has been outstanding, giving the Colts hope for life after Andrew Luck. Seventh in completion percentage, fourth in touchdowns, and sixth in the league in quarterback rating, Brissett is leading a talented team as well as Luck could have. T. Y. Hilton re-aggravated a quad injury, which could hurt their offense depending on how much time he misses. For a team that was staring at doomsday prophecies a month ago, they look to be one on the better teams in the AFC.

4. The athleticism on display each Sunday is mind-boggling. It’s impossible to keep up with the draw dropping plays. In twenty minutes Sunday, Dalvin Cook, Nelson Agholor, and Demarcus Robinson scored touchdowns that run on loop all week on SportsCenter. Beautiful to watch.

5. The Lions upset of the Eagles in Philadelphia was impressive, though Philly was missing their top two receivers. Still, the Lions are undefeated and threatening to remain in the NFC North race past September. One key reason for Sunday’s victory was their secondary. They smothered the healthy Eagles receivers, giving Carson Wentz little space to make throws, tallying an impressive 10 passes defended. The schedule gets tough, however, with Kansas City, Green Bay, and Minnesota on tap. Their secondary will need more days like Sunday for the Lions to remain competitive.

The Detroit secondary has Philly’s receivers blanketed

6. Get up, Donte Jackson.

7. Mike Evans may be the best receiver in the league no one talks about. His erratic quarterback has a lot to do with that, however. Case in point, his game Sunday. 7 catches, 146 yards, and 3 touchdowns in the first half. 2 catches 44 yards in the second. Jameis Winston is infuriating, wasting Evans’ talent.

8. A pet peeve of mine is the slowness with which teams break the huddle. How many timeouts are wasted and 5 yard delay of game penalties taken each week because of this nonsense? They should have taken care of this stuff of the first week of training camp. It boggles my mind that Aaron Rodgers, after many years in the league, can have three instances a game when he can’t get a play off in time. Hurry up.

9. Kyle Allen made throw after throw in leading Carolina’s destruction of the Cardinals on Sunday. 4 touchdowns and a 144.4 QB rating gets your attention. If he keeps playing this well, the Panthers will have a Cam Newton decision to make.

10. After the aforementioned top teams, the rest of the league is a crap shoot. Quarterback play is unstable week to week, even series to series. There aren’t enough consistent guys under center to know what you’re getting each Sunday. It makes for exciting football during the season and gives quite a few teams hope. The inevitability of the top teams winning in January will become more obvious in November and December, however.

Browns take Baby Steps

Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns, NFL, Odell Beckham

In a few weeks, there’s a chance we’ll look back on the Browns’ performance Monday night and see where the seeds of improvement were planted. While far from a dominant game, especially offensively, they played as a team, more than in week 1. Lost in the excitement of the talent acquired over the last two off seasons is the fact that this is a young squad.

Baker Mayfield is 24.
Myles Garrett is 23.
Denzel Ward is 22.
Nick Chubb is 23.
David Njoku is 23.
Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry are considered old heads at 26.

No one involved in this organization has won with any amount of consistency. Freddie Kitchens is 44 and a head coach for the first time at any level.

Is this being stated as an excuse? Absolutely not. Young teams, quarterbacks, and coaches win all the time in the NFL. It’s only a call for patience. What we saw out of the Browns on Monday was not pretty. The offense sputtered unless the ball was in Beckham’s hands. His explosiveness was unleashed for the first time as a Brown, showing why the optimism for this team exists. He is one of the five most gifted players in the league. He is a threat to score every time he touches the ball. Teams design their game plans around stopping him. He is a player who wins championships.

This win was important for the fans and the players. Building a legitimate contender for years to come starts with talent acquisition and ends with those pieces gelling together on the field. They made the first step in that process on Monday. Kitchens’ and Mayfield’s successes from last year are long gone. While Freddie is learning how to manage a 53 man roster, Baker needs to settle himself and his offense.

The first two weeks for the franchise quarterback have not gone well. On Monday, he looked as uncertain in the pocket as I’ve seen in his pro career. Holding the ball, scrambling too early, throwing late to receivers, and general inaccuracy plagued him throughout the night. A bad overthrow to Beckham was his most glaring mistake, but he also threw late to Njoku on a play in which the tight end sustained a concussion and a broken wrist. Njoku will miss extended time.

Mayfield is thinking too much in the pocket. Maybe the interceptions are getting to him, effecting his psyche. These are things that affect young quarterbacks. It’s up to Kitchens to help him fix his issues.

Give him more slants, like the touchdown to Beckham, and quick crossing patterns early in games to get him in a groove. His confidence looks to be waning; do things to get it back. Use your running back more, or at least the threat of him.

The Beckham touchdown was on an RPO, or a run pass option play. The quarterback can opt to hand the ball off, or pull it back and throw. It’s also a version of play action, which they need to run more of. Defenses worry about Nick Chubb, and play action passes will freeze defenses, allowing Mayfield that extra half second he needs to find open receivers. According to Football Outsiders, in 2016 the average play action play across the NFL netted 7.8 yards, while non-play action plays gained 6.2 yards. In 2017, those numbers were 7.4 and 6.0, respectively.

Play action holds the corner and linebacker for a tick. Beckham’s gone

The Browns line up mainly in the shotgun and rarely use play action. Kitchens would be wise to add more of it into his play calling repertoire.

The defense shone on Monday, no one brighter than Myles Garrett. He dominated Jets left tackle Kelvin Beachum, going around and through him, registering three sacks and taking the NFL lead in that category. Garrett has a better-than-average chance to lead the league in sacks and a shot at Defensive Player of the Year. However, he needs to curtail the penalties. Three unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in two games will not cut it. However you feel about the way NFL officials are calling roughing the passer, it will be flagged. Garrett must become more disciplined or he will hurt the team at an inopportune moment.

Definition of a Bull Rush

Both linebackers, Joe Schobert and Christian Kirksey, played outstanding Monday. They were around the ball relentlessly, keeping Le’Veon Bell in check in the run and pass games. Bell totaled 31 touches for 129 yards. Kirksey made plays against Bell on screens, a concern coming into the game. Schobert forced Bell to fumble on his biggest catch and run of the night. Looked at as the biggest weakness on defense, the linebackers played a large part in stifling the Jets offense. Unfortunately, Kirksey may miss the rest of the season with a chest issue, possibly a torn pectoral muscle. The rookies, Mack Wilson and Sione Takitaki, will now get a chance to shore up the middle of the defense. Wilson played 11 snaps Monday after Kirksey left and tallied 4 tackles. Here’s hoping for more of that.

Denzel Ward was underwhelming again, allowing Robbie Anderson a few of the only big plays the Jets hit on Monday night. He must get better. He is an essential part of the success of this defense. With the Rams coming to town, he cannot afford another ‘meh’ game. Could the Browns be in on Jalen Ramsey? Ian Rappaport of the NFL Network reports that the Browns are in the mix. We’ll see if John Dorsey is ready to give up a first-round pick and Greedy Williams for Ramsey.

A huge challenge awaits Sunday night. The NFC champion Rams will be one of the two or three best teams the Browns will play this year. A good performance by the defense could still mean surrendering 24-30 points. Jared Goff, Todd Gurley, and the stable of receivers they employ will challenge the defense on all levels. The defensive line must get pressure on Goff, causing quick throws. Goff struggles when pressured. Schobert will need to be at his best to contain Gurley.

Offensively, any success will depend upon slowing down Aaron Donald. He is a one man wrecking crew against the pass and the run. The reigning Defensive Player of the Year, he has what Myles Garrett wants. He will disrupt the Browns offense. You will get sick of seeing him in the Browns’ backfield. Mayfield must get rid of the ball or they will shut the offense down. Their corners, Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, are one of the best duos in the league. An exciting matchup with Beckham and Landry awaits. The Browns wide receivers need to run precise routes to aid their quarterback. It could be another tough week for Baker. Kitchen’s game plan will be paramount. If the Browns have any chance of pulling out a victory, Freddie must show some of the creativity that lead to success for the offense last year. And yeah, some play action passes.

The Whip Around

1.The penalty flags are an epidemic. During Week 2, the accepted penalties per team were 7.9. The game is becoming unwatchable. Rarely are three plays run before another flag gets tossed. The NFL needs to clean it up, or it will drive away fans faster than any concussion controversy could. It drags the action to a halt. 41% of the league’s referees are in their 1st or 2nd year in the NFL. They need to learn that infractions not affecting the play can be overlooked. There’s a reason traveling isn’t called each time down the floor in the NBA. Let these guys play.

97 pointing and laughing

2. The Vikings have as much talent as anyone in their division, and Dalvin Cook is showing he’s one of the best backs in the league. Kirk Cousins’ play will drag them to the depths of the also rans if he doesn’t get better, however. An unconscionable interception thrown into double coverage off his back foot in the end zone on Sunday killed any hope for a Vikings comeback. I’m guessing the front office is regretting his 3 year, 84 million dollar contract.


3. Mike Brown needs to look toward Miami when deciding the best course of action for his Bengals. They are semi-talented, yet turned Paul Brown Stadium into the world’s largest dumpster fire on Sunday, getting thrashed by a spry-looking 49ers squad. A. J. Green, Geno Atkins, Joe Mixon, Carlos Dunlap, Dre Kirkpatrick and Andy Dalton are assets that could fetch draft picks on the open market. This team will not win many games, may as well start the long rebuild now.

Time for the Bengals to tank

4. It’s been said many times, but Khalil Mack is a destroyer of offenses. Whether he or Aaron Donald is the best defensive player in the league can be debated; Mack’s effect on games cannot. He is a disruptive force, regardless of what the stat sheet says. He won the game for Chicago in Denver on Sunday. Offenses must account for him on every play. While Mitch Trubisky struggles, Mack will single-handedly keep the Bears in the playoff hunt.

5. Lamar Jackson dropped an absolute dime to Marquise Brown along the sideline to seal the Ravens win against Arizona on Sunday. Still not sold that he’ll remain healthy, or that he’ll do what he’s doing against better defenses, but he has looked the part against inferior competition.

6. Again I was impressed with Kyler Murray. He moves well in the pocket, creating throwing lanes for himself. He gave them a chance at the upset in Baltimore.

7. The Jacksonville defense was a force in Houston and at home against Tennessee. Calais Campbell reigned over the Titans’ O-line. The Jalen Ramsey trade rumors may change this, but they could make noise in that weak division. Gardner Minshew has made some impressive throws in two games this week, lighting Twitter aflame in the process. Kudos to Doug Marrone for going for 2 and the win against Houston, but keep the ball in your hot rookie’s hand on that play.

8. Patrick Mahomes is a buzz saw. Quiet in the first quarter, he threw for 278 yards and 4 touchdowns in the 2nd, putting the Raiders in their place. The Patriots look like world beaters, but if these two teams meet in January, there will be no question who the best quarterback on the field will be.

How many QBs make that throw?

9. The end of the Denver-Chicago game will not be shown in Canton. Joe Flacco, somehow, took a delay of game penalty on the two point conversion. The Broncos went for the tie after being backed up five yards. The Bears then jump offside on the extra point try, giving the Broncos the chance to go for two again. Confused? So was I. Cue the circus music.

10. Pittsburgh and New Orleans caught tough breaks when each of their Hall of Fame quarterbacks got injured. While I had little faith in the Steelers anyway, the Saints are still talented and in a weak division. Brees may only miss 6 weeks. Teddy Bridgewater should be able to hold the fort during that time. He’s been to a Pro Bowl, and with the offense his for the foreseeable future, he should be able to keep them afloat. After games the next two weeks against the Seahawks and Cowboys, the schedule lightens up. New Orleans will still have a say in who makes the Super Bowl from the NFC.

What the Hell

Cleveland Browns, NFL, Uncategorized

This was the worry since they hired Freddie Kitchens to take over as head coach of the Cleveland Browns. Would his lack of experience cost the team games? Would he be able to handle the collection of egos acquired by John Dorsey? Week One wasn’t great.

Too many penalties.

18 is obnoxious. The Browns lacked discipline in all three phases. They showed up on Sunday to win a fight instead of a football game. Myles Garrett threw an open-handed punch. Greg Robinson kicked a guy and got tossed. Devaroe Lawrence cursed out a referee and got the boot. Throw in 5 holding penalties on offense and 3 on defense, along with 2 roughing the passer penalties and you have a disaster. Unacceptable.

182 penalty yards are impossible to overcome. This was the story of the game. They killed their own drives and extended the Titans’. It showed a lack of focus and short fuses on the Browns sideline. The talent upgrades will mean nothing if they cannot clean it up.

Offensively Baker Mayfield had his moments. The opening drive, looking back, was fool’s gold. The offense took chunks of yardage, putting 6 on the board and looking like the juggernaut everyone predicted. The penalties took over after, killing drives and shuffling the offensive line after Robinson’s ejection. They sprinkled in some hurry up after halftime, leading to plus plays and a touchdown. Consistency, however, was nonexistent.

The wide receivers showed glimpses of what they’re expected to be. Beckham was flagged for an offensive pass interference penalty with the team driving for a field goal at the end of the first half, but otherwise showed well in his Browns debut. Jarvis Landry had a big 34 yard reception to set up the 2nd touchdown. Higgins snared a 35 yarder on the first drive and seemed to promise an air show awaiting the fans this week against the blitzes of Gregg Williams, the Jets defensive coordinator and former Browns interim coach. As for Odell wearing a watch, I’ll never understand why anyone gives a shit about that stuff.

Baker held the ball too long In spots, while the line was a sieve at others. Again however, Kitchens deserves his share of the blame. Once flags started flying and injuries and ejections decimated his O-line, adjustments needed to be made that weren’t. Calling quick passes and leaving backs and tight ends in to block could have given his QB and line a better shot. I’m loathe to call for more running of the ball, but in Sunday’s case, it may have slowed down the Titans’ pass rush. After the hole was dug, Baker played hero ball, trying too hard to get it back all at once. Too little, too late, however, and it uglied up the final score.

Quick throws out of your own end zone, instead of 3 vertical routes

Defensively, I’m not as down as others. They generated pressure on 46.7% of Tennessee’s drop backs, according to ESPN’s NFL Matchup, third in the league. The front four will pressure the quarterback.

Denzel Ward was bad. He was a step slow in coverage and whiffed on tackles that would have curtailed the chunk plays from the Titans. Again, however, drives were stopped only to be extended by the yellow flags. I thought Greedy Williams played well in his first outing, his coverage was better than Ward’s, although he missed a tackle on Derrick Henry on his screen pass touchdown.

Da hell is this?

Sunday turned into a disaster. We’ll learn more in the coming weeks if this was a case of buying into their own hype, or if they aren’t ready to play winning football. This falls on the coaching staff, and why I’ve worried about Kitchens. The facts are you don’t know what you don’t know. No matter how long he’s coached NFL players, dealing with the things a head coach must handle on a Sunday is daunting. Will he be up to the task, on top of calling plays? Has he delegated enough to his assistants in order to keep things running smoothly on the sideline?

The Jets are decimated with injuries. Sam Darnold is out with mono and C. J. Mosley, the leader of their defense, is questionable. The Jets D was pitching a shutout against Buffalo until he was injured. The quarterback of that defense, if he is unable to play Monday, Baker should be able to exploit the middle of the field. If Njoku can catch the ball, a huge if, look for him to have a big game.

There are no excuses for this one. We will find out about this team Monday Night. If they are focused and prepared, they will have no trouble. If they are brash, overlook the Jets, and continue with undisciplined mistakes, this game will be close and become a potential loss. If that happens, this season has the chance to take a drastic downturn.

I expect a more prepared Browns team Monday night. The Jets struggled themselves, kicking a game to the Bills on Sunday despite winning the turnover battle 4-0. They have holes in their secondary Mayfield can exploit. The offense should look better under the lights. If it doesn’t, look out.

The D-line will again have success. The Bills got to Sam Darnold 4 times last week. I expect Olivier Vernon, a no show Sunday, and Denzel Ward to have bounce back games. Cutting out the miscues will be imperative. This isn’t a high-powered Jets offense, and they’re starting a backup QB. They cannot give them free yards via penalty and need to force Trevor Siemian into mistakes.

Sunday’s thumping has a chance to be positive. If the coaching staff and the players learn from the nonsense, forget the hype, and play to their talent level, we should see something resembling a competent football team on Monday night. If, however, the penalty flags fly and Kitchens doesn’t make adjustments to better protect Baker, worry. The maturity level may not be high enough for this team to play consistent, winning football.

Whip Around the NFL

1.Yes, the Ravens looked impressive Sunday. That Dolphins team is an abomination, an affront to the NFL, however. I still don’t believe in Lamar Jackson in the long run. He completed 57% of his passes at Louisville. Quarterbacks don’t get more accurate in the NFL. I think this defense has lost too much talent to be as dominating as in year’s past. Last year they beat the Bills 47-3 in the opener, then lost to the Bengals. I’m on record saying they’re no better than 8-8. Prove me wrong.

2. I suppose the Patriots are taking another shot at a perfect season. Their schedule is weak, and the roster loaded. Brady will eventually nose dive, but maybe this isn’t the year? Another AFC North team I don’t believe in, and another reason I still give the Browns a good chance to win the division, is the Steelers. They were an average team last year, lost the best wide receiver in the game, and have another year on Roethlisberger, who seems to contemplate retirement every other week. Yes, the Patriots dominated, and looked outstanding doing so. If they go undefeated and win it all again, it won’t surprise me. Don’t crown them based on this victory, however.

3. Kyler Murray was a mess, and a joy, to watch. His height is still concerning; he had 4-5 passes batted down in the 1st half alone, but damn it was fun to watch him bring his team back in the 4th quarter. His deep ball is a thing of beauty. It’s a precursor to what we will see out of him this year, great moments surrounded by lots of garbage. His supporting cast leaves a lot to be desired.


4. T.J. Hockenson was impressive. Gronk 2.0?

5. The ESPN announcers calling the Denver v. Oakland game fell all over themselves mentioning Antonio Brown as many times as possible. We get it, guys. Some crazy shit happened over the weekend and you couldn’t wait to splatter his name all over the telecast. This isn’t TMZ. Stick to the players on the field.

6. I don’t mind Joe Tessitore calling play-by-play on Monday Night Football, but he could cut it out with the theatrics. You’re not calling the Miracle on Ice every play.

7. The one AFC North team I expected to be horrid, the Bengals, showed well at Seattle. Zac Taylor’s offense was intriguing, and Andy Dalton looked as good as he has in 2-3 seasons. Could the Bengals have something to say about the division? I still say no, but they’ve at least piqued my interest.

8. Thursday night games continue to be garbage. Tampa v. Carolina had zero flow, though Tampa proved the tougher team and Jameis Winston showed some grit. Their D-line was in Cam’s face all night. Not sure if his shoulder, which he had offseason surgery on, is bothering him, but it’s something to watch. The Panthers look to be in trouble all ready.

9. I feel the same way about the Cowboys and Dak that I do about the Ravens and Lamar. They were playing a AAA team. I don’t trust Dak to make plays in crunch time, and I don’t trust Jason Garrett to pull the right strings in tight games. Elliott is great, but running backs like that don’t win playoff games anymore. Doubt they can overtake the Eagles in that division.

10. If Green Bay’s defense is as good all year as they were last Thursday, Rodgers may get another chance to hoist the Lombardi Trophy.

All in all, an extremely sloppy week of football. Penalty flags everywhere, and most offenses seemed stuck in neutral. By the end of the month, I expect to see a helluva lot better football being played. Week 1 is always a crap shoot, we over-analyze it every year. Here’s hoping for more entertaining games this weekend.