The 2018 NFL season is finally upon us, and its first week was as hectic as it can possibly get. A smattering of upsets, blowouts and nail-biters was thrust upon us, leaving many of us excited and a few shocked. 32 teams worked all offseason to prepare for this season, and the results have varied for each of them so far. It may only be the first week of NFL football, but it can serve as a harbinger of the fates of some teams and the outcome here can set the tone for the entire season. With that said, here are some of the most notable games of Week 1.
Atlanta Falcons 12, Philadelphia Eagles 18
Effectively a repeat of last season's divisional round clash between these two teams, the Eagles once again prevailed when it came down to the wire. Philadelphia started Nick Foles in place of their starter Carson Wentz, who is still recovering from an ACL tear last season. Just like last year, the Eagles' victory came down to the very last play, when Matt Ryan threw incomplete for Julio Jones in the end zone.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 48, New Orleans Saints 40
Nobody expected this turn of events. With starting QB Jameis Winston suspended for three games, backup Ryan Fitzpatrick was forced to start for Tampa Bay. And boy, did he deliver. He threw for 417 yards and four touchdowns to lead his team to victory, and he could remain the starter if he delivers more performances like this throughout Winston's suspension. New Orleans' defense reverted to its dismal, pre-2017 form. Drew Brees may have to put the majority of his team on his back again if this keeps up.
Pittsburgh Steelers 21, Cleveland Browns 21
The first week of 2018 features a tie after 2017 had none. The Browns snapped their 17-game losing streak with a tie in their opener against the Steelers, a team notorious for playing down to their competition. Both teams continuously shot themselves in the foot, with Pittsburgh committing six turnovers and Cleveland missing a game-winning field goal to make it a draw.
Kansas City Chiefs 38, Los Angeles Chargers 28
Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes' second start of his career was a doozy. The young signal-caller threw four touchdowns and no interceptions for 256 yards and a 127.5 passer rating. Their defense was a concern, as Chargers QB Philip Rivers carved them up for 424 yards and three touchdowns. This was the Chiefs' ninth consecutive victory over the Chargers.
Chicago Bears 23, Green Bay Packers 24
Arguably the game of the week, Chicago roared out to a 20-0 lead and looked to defeat their biggest rivals for the first time since 2015. In addition, Packers QB Aaron Rodgers exited the game early with a knee injury and recent trade acquisition and superstar Khalil Mack was making his presence felt with several big plays. Then… Aaron Rodgers re-entered the game. The veteran led Green Bay to a stunning 24-23 comeback victory that included 21 points scored in the fourth quarter. Rodgers proved why he recently became the highest-paid player in the NFL and added yet another historic comeback to his vast résumé.