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NFL Sunday: Week 1’s Top Takeaways

Break down the best and worst from NFL Sunday

Every Monday morning, Salute’s Adrian Gregory Glover will break down the best and the worst from NFL Sunday. Let’s peek at Week 1.

The Falcons Continue To Play Down: The NFC Champs had more than enough weapons to trounce the Chicago Bears.

They were largely not on display on Sunday as they let the Bears hang around until the very last play of the game.

Some have gushed over Chicago’s improved defense while the truth is that once again a new system has come to town that may take Atlanta’s offense some time to get used to.

One offensive sequence perfectly exemplifies what neutered the Falcons for most of the game.

A key score was denied as newly minted offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian got cute in the redzone and lined diminutive slot man Taylor Gabriel up in the Z receiver spot while setting his larger frame star Julio Jones up inside.

Who did Matt Ryan float a deep fade into the endzone to? Gabriel in what ended up being a complete drive killer and one of many head scratchers offensively for the Birds.

The Falcons defense is improved as advertised as they are fast, aggressive and hungry but if the offense can’t by them time to rest and recharge, their work will always be for naught.

They got the W but it felt like a moral victory when Atlanta pretty much handed journeyman QB Mike Glennon a cape to come save the day for Chicago.

The Giants AND the Cowboys Needed Beckham to Provide Spark:  Salute’s NFL Editor Tony Williams already discussed how bad the New York Giants need OBJ but it can’t be stated enough.

In a contest that brought snores to the general public, the Giants and the Dallas Cowboys did very little to prove that either team is ready to get electric.

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott continued his quest to become the NFL’s premiere game manager.

In short, there wasn’t much to see in a game that usually hosts fireworks.

So Savage:  We predicted that the Houston Texans would come out and  play inspired football for their city and we were wrong.

Waaay wrong.  Shout out to the Jags for who for the moment can say they played up to their potential.

So what went wrong for Houston? It’s pretty obvious. They could not stop the run and the entire team knew that their quarterback Tom Savage was going to get the hook at the first sign of trouble.

They say if you have two quarterbacks then you have none. That is the story here and the Texans should stick with Clemson champion DeShaun Watson and leave their messy ways in the past.

M.A.S.H. Alert:  2017 has been brutal to NFL stars on the injury front. In training camp, preseason and Week One, focal points from all over the field went down for extended absences.

Arizona’s David Johnson, Jacksonville’s Allen Robinson, New England’s Danny Amendola, San Francisco’s Reuben Foster, Chicago’s Kevin White, Baltimore’s Danny Woodhead and Za’Darius Smith and Dallas’ Orlando Scandrick are just some of the key players that are on the shelf.

If this trend continues, the NFL will be playing with The Replacements.

Cleveland Is On The Cusp: The Browns will not be special this year but after giving Pittsburgh ALL they could handle, it must be said now that they FINALLY have their quarterback of the future and the ability to steal games from contenders.

They are two-three players away from wrestling control away from the Steelers in the AFC North.  The Dogg Pound just has to stay patient until 2019 at worst.

Quick Hits:

The Philadelphia Eagles appear to be the class of the NFC East…for now.

Do the Baltimore Ravens have another performance like Sunday’s dismantling of the Bengals in them?

Yes, the Rams scattered, smothered, covered and cremated the Colts but they still have a lot to prove.

Both Arizona and Seattle need to take a look in the mirror and perform a gut check. Their losses were self-inflicted and due to a lack of discipline.

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