Just as getting your first points in important in any NFL game, so too is getting your first win of a new season. After Week One, there are a few teams facing major pressure heading into this weekend, and without a win, they could quickly see their 2019 season spiral out of control.
The hype factory was working 24/7 this summer regarding the Cleveland Browns, and their opening week performance was, shall we say underwhelming (unless you were looking for a nice watch to give as a holiday gift, they Odell Beckham, Jr. was a big help). As with many things in life, too much of any good thing can be bad for you, and at least for now, the Browns come off as a team that can’t play well when they are expected to do good things; this season will soon reveal if Week One was a normal or abnormal game for this young team.
The Browns next play the New York Jets, another team that didn’t have a great Week One. After coughing up a 16-0 lead to the Buffalo Bills, the Jets enter this week with a new kicker and wide receiver, but a lot of questions about both their offense and defense. With these teams playing on Monday night, someone will enter the second half of September 0-2 and facing a lot of doubters, but between these two teams, Cleveland is facing more pressure to win this week.
Facing the most questions this week could be the Pittsburgh Steelers, who didn’t even bother to show up for most of their 33-3 disaster against the New England Patriots. Mike Tomlin could be on the hotseat as the head coach in the Steel City and people are wondering out loud if this will be Ben Roethlisberger’s last season as the Steelers’ quarterback. Facing the Seattle Seahawks is the last thing that Pittsburgh needs this week; but getting them at home with an early kickoff time could help the Steelers even their record after two weeks.
How does a team prove that they are not tanking away a season to draft a new quarterback? That is what fans and even players on the Miami Dolphins are asking this week, with most not coming up with many answers. After reports came out that players on the team called their agents after getting blow out by the Baltimore Ravens last weekend, the New England Patriots head to South Beach this week, with an 0-2 start starting down the Dolphins like Jaws. While there was never any pressure placed on this team to win in 2019, without a good effort shown by the entire organization, things could explode in Miami in a very ugly way as soon as Sunday.
Will the real Atlanta Falcons ever return is a question that many people in Dixie and around the NFL must be asking. It is possible that the contract talks between the franchise and Julio Jones that dragged into September cold have been a distraction leading into Week One; all the past two seasons could be who the Falcons will be going forward, and the days of Matt Ryan being an elite quarterback could be over. Seeing the Philadelphia Eagles in a Week Two primetime matchup could be exactly what the Dirty Birds need to get 2019 back on track, or have it completely fall off the rails.