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nfl.com article: 39 things we learned from week 1


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I just copied n pasted up to the falcons info... feel free to click link for reading in it's entirety....


Thirty-nine things we learned from Week 1

  • By Around the NFL staff NFL.com
  • Published: Sept. 12, 2016 at 12:14 a.m.
  • Updated: Sept. 12, 2016 at 10:45 a.m.




On the surface, the opening Sunday of the 2016 NFL season delivered a string of fantastic finishes.

Digging deeper into a slate of games that failed to register a single noteworthy upset, one theme emerged: 2015 held serve.

The Bengals and Seahawks found a way to win a close game against quality competition.

With no vertical threat, the Packers relied too heavily upon Aaron Rodgers' ability to come through with a series of brilliant, unrepeatable "wow" plays.

After struggling to move the ball in August, the Saints' high-octane offense was undone by a porous defense.

The Chargers not only lost a close contest in heartbreaking fashion, but also suffered a debilitating injury that jeopardizes their chances of competing going forward.

As impressive as rookie Dak Prescott has been since the opening of training camp, the Cowboysfailed to win once again with a backup quarterback.

Despite the loss of Tom Brady to Deflategate, the Patriots found a way to win on the road in Arizona.

And, finally, the perennially rebuilding Browns were outclassed by a superior opponent.

Here's what else we learned in Week 1:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31, Atlanta Falcons 24


1. In his first appearance of 2016, Jameis Winston got off to a similarly slow start to the one he did in his first career start last season. Winston began the game 2-of-5 passing with an interception. He subsequently went 21 for 28 with four touchdowns, including incredible deep balls to Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Mike Evans. Both balls were only where his receivers could get it, and both guys made incredible plays to come down with it. Seferian-Jenkins looked as though he was falling out of favor in Tampa but now looks like he could be the third massive target that Winston can throw jump balls to. Winston will have some growing pains still, as he threw some pretty bad passes when under pressure, but overall he made less mistakes than he did in many of the Bucs' games last year.




2. Devonta Freeman was ineffective against the Bucs, but backup running back Tevin Coleman was the Falcons' biggest playmaker aside from Julio Jones. Some forget that Coleman was given just as much of an opportunity to seize the starting job at the start of last season as Freeman but faltered. He might end up getting just as many snaps as Freeman as the season wears on. He was especially effective catching balls, coming down with five catches for 95 yards, which led the team. Free-agent acquisitionMohamed Sanu looked like a good pickup as he had a big 65-yard catch on the opening drive that led to three points and later came down with a touchdown grab in the first quarter.

3. The Buccaneers' defense looked less sloppy in its opening game under Koetter and new defensive coordinator Mike Smith than it did last year under the guidance of Lovie Smith and Leslie Frazier. They were the second-most penalized team last season, but against the Falcons were only penalized 48 yards total, none of which helped the Falcons on big drives. The defense still gave up large chunks of yardage at times, but also buckled down on key third downs as Atlanta was only converted 3 of 13 tries. Lavonte David looked like his old self and Kwon Alexander looks like one of the most promising young linebackers in the league -- he had 15 tackles and a sack.

-- Mark Ortega

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