Week 1 is over, and Week 2 is only a day away. How glorious is the fall season? As the leaves begin to turn and football makes its presence all the more familiar, we celebrate. “We,” unfortunately, does not include John Breech today; he’s taking the day off to rewatch Joe Burrow’s clutch throw to beat the Vikings. So I, Cody Benjamin, will guide you through the latest from around the NFL.
This is the Pick Six Newsletter. Now let’s get to it. (And please, do yourself a favor and make sure you’re signed up to receive this newsletter every day! You don’t want to miss our daily offerings of everything you need to know around the NFL.)
We’ve got QB power rankings, Week 2 predictions and much more:
With one week of football in the books, Will Brinson welcomed Brady Quinn to the “Pick Six NFL Podcast” for some early-season overreactions. The guys debated whether:
- Aaron Rodgers is fully invested in the Packers’ 2021 success
- Jameis Winston is a legitimate MVP candidate
- The Eagles are the new favorites in the NFC East
Catch the entire discussion (and subscribe for all kinds of daily NFL talk) right here.
Papa Prisco is back (not sure if Pete is OK with that nickname, but he is the senior writer here). And he’s got picks for every Week 2 game! Here are some of his most notable projections:
- Bills 29, Dolphins 18: Buffalo was awful on offense last week in losing to the Steelers at home, but I think they bounce back as Josh Allen gets back on track. Tua Tagovailoa won’t be able to keep up.
- Eagles 23, 49ers 22: The Eagles are 8-1 against the spread in the last nine against the 49ers and I think that plays true in this one. Jalen Hurts has another good day.
- Chargers 35, Cowboys 30: Watching Justin Herbert and Dak Prescott in a shootout will be fun. The Chargers will be the team that makes the defensive play late to seal it.
3. QB Power Rankings: Tom Brady, Jameis Winston on the rise
One week of football sure shifted the pecking order of starting quarterbacks, with veterans like Matt Ryan and Ben Roethlisberger tumbling down the board, and other big names like Matthew Stafford and Jimmy Garoppolo climbing up. Here’s a look at the top 10 from our Week 2 QB rundown:
- Patrick Mahomes
- Russell Wilson (+1)
- Tom Brady (+2)
- Aaron Rodgers (-2)
- Dak Prescott (+2)
- Justin Herbert
- Josh Allen (-3)
- Matthew Stafford (+2)
- Lamar Jackson (-1)
- Kyler Murray (+1)
4. Cowboys, Washington stock watch: Dak Prescott is on fire
Every week, we’re taking stock of top players on NFL teams. On Wednesday, Jordan Dajani reviewed Washington’s risers and fallers (hint: Terry McLaurin is still elite!). Resident Cowboys expert Patrik Walker also chimed in on America’s Team, and he’s got none other than Dak Prescott as his top winner from Week 1:
To infinity, and beyond. Any questions you might’ve had regarding Prescott’s health are now put to bed, along with any speculation of potential rust in his first game back since going down with a season-ending fractured ankle 333 days prior. The two-time Pro Bowler took the field against the G.O.A.T. and outplayed him at every turn — the only reason for the Cowboys loss being attributable to missed kicks that cost Dallas four points and uncharacteristic drops by CeeDee Lamb that not only stalled a drive or two, but also gave Tom Brady an extra possession and touchdown for the Buccaneers.
5. Divisional Power Rankings: NFC West is the best of the best
Jeff Kerr reviewed every Week 1 game to rank all eight NFL divisions. His top pick: The NFC West, which entered the year as one of the closest competitions. Here’s Jeff’s take on the West, plus his full ranking:
Talk about a division that flexed its muscle in Week 1. Every team in the NFC West won and the division outscored its opposition 141-76. Three of the four games were won by double digits — and in the fourth game, the San Francisco 49ers were up 24 points in the fourth quarter before the Lions mounted a furious comeback.
- NFC West
- AFC West
- AFC North
- NFC South
- AFC East
- NFC East
- AFC South
- NFC North
6. 49ers lose starting running back to season-ending surgery
This is big news on both the fantasy and real-world front, with Raheem Mostert undergoing a knee operation that’ll cost him the rest of 2021. Mostert’s injury history suggested he was always a risk to make it through a full season, but now rookies Elijah Mitchell and Trey Sermon are slated to take over the lead ball-carrier duties in San Francisco. Perhaps Kyle Shanahan will also incorporate even more of rookie QB Trey Lance to accommodate for Mostert’s absence on the ground.