Cowboys, Colts, Vikings, Eagles, Chargers, Jets, Bengals… What do all these teams have in common? They are all either play-off teams from last year, or play-off hopefuls for 2010. Correct? Anything else? Yup, you got it, they all lost their Week 1 games. And what about these? Redskins, Chiefs, Bucs, Bears…. They all won, and were nothing short of the laughing stock of the NFL last year.
Watching the Chargers/Chiefs game last night, I couldn’t help thinking that the Chiefs had somehow turned a page. The have a new stadium, bright new rookie talent and now, a newfound confidence in their defense and running game. Matt Cassel still needs to step it up at QB, but other than that, I didn’t see too many things that resembled the bumbling Chiefs from last year. I thought the same thing about the Redskins, who’s defense held the Cowboys, once thought to be brimming with weapons, to a lowly 7 points (and yes, I am aware that the Redskins only scored 13, but some of the greatest coaches and football players of all time would say that Defenses win games). And some unexpected things happened as well. With the injury to Kolb, Michael Vick took over at QB and really shined as the first string QB he longs to be. Are we turning a page where all things bad are good again, and all things old are new? Where it might not matter where you were last season, but a strong showing in Week 1 could generate a buzz so loud it drowns out any praise for the golden boys of 2009? I suppose only time will tell. Week 2 is a new week for everyone. A chance for redemption. A chance for those teams who proved critics wrong that theirs wins were not just flukes. In a way, week 2 is more important than week 1. It is like a sophomore album to a song artist. You have to prove at some point, you have staying power. And that begins on Sunday.