Later today, the San Francisco 49ers will host the Los Angeles Rams to kick off week three of the 2017 NFL regular season. Before we officially turn the page, however, we take one final look back at week two – and we start with the defending world champions, who won their first game of the year.
1. The Patriots' offense has shown its tremendous potential: New England's offense played an uncharacteristically uneven game on opening day. In week two, the unit looked much improved and was nearly unstoppable early against the New Orleans Saints. The team scored on five of its first six possession and scored 30 first-half points.
2. The Cowboys struggle when Ezekiel Elliott is shut down: The Denver Broncos dominated their week two game against the Dallas Cowboys and a big reason for that was the defense's performance, especially against the run. The unit was able to hold Ezekiel Elliott in check and limited him to a mere eight yards on nine carries. With Elliott shut down, the Cowboys' offense was unable to get into any rhythm.
3. Kareem Hunt is the frontrunner for rookie of the year: On opening day, Hunt had 246 yards and three touchdowns. In week two against the Philadelphia Eagles, he added 124 yards and a pair of scores as a reliable weapon both in the running and the passing game – one that has arguably been the most impressive rookie so far this year.
4. Suspect offensive line play continues: Week two again saw some disturbing offensive line play, particularly against the pass: The Eagles and Panthers both gave up six sacks, the Giants five, the Cardinals and Colts four apiece. Except the Eagles, neither of those team's has looked good offensively so far – and the blocking up front is a big reason for that.
5. Jacoby Brissett is the Colts’ best quarterback right now: Of course, once Andrew Luck is healthy again, he will reclaim the title of the Colts' best passer. Until then, however, former Patriots third rounder Jacoby Brissett has shown that he is the team's best option at the position. While Brissett did not stand out in week two and his overtime interception basically sealed the team's loss, the 23-year old has been a clear improvement over last week's starter, Scott Tolzien.
6. The Bengals offense continues to struggle: Two weeks into the season and the Cincinnati Bengals have yet to score a touchdown. Quarterback Andy Dalton's uneven play, the lack of a viable rushing attack and the team's red zone issues were the big reasons for that last Thursday against the Texans. Will this week be the one the team finally is able to reach the endzone? Going against the potent Green Bay Packers, the outlook is not great – but it certainly seems possible.
7. Mitchell Trubisky better get ready: Chicago invested considerable money in quarterback Mike Glennon this offseason. However, the $45.0 million man has failed to prove his worth so far and was unable to keep the offense in its week two game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. If this continues, don't be surprised to see first round rookie Mitchell Trubisky see considerable snaps in the future.
8. The Falcons' new stadium is spectacular: On Sunday night, the Atlanta Falcons opened their new, state-of-the-art arena. The $1.6 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium saw the team defeat the visiting Packers – a rematch of the 2016 NFC title game – 34-23; a fitting opening for what is arguably the most spectacular stadium in the NFL.
9. The Giants do not live up to the preseason hype – at all: Prior to the start of the regular season, the New York Giants were a popular dark horse pick to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. However, after two weeks the team has clearly failed to live up to its expectations: The offense is currently one of the worst in the NFL, while the talented defense is unable to carry the load.
10. Tavon Austin continues to prove why his is one of the NFL's worst contracts: In 2016, the Los Angeles Rams signed wide receiver Tavon Austin to a four-year, $42 million contract. Through two games this season, Austin has 26 total yards and played a mere nine snaps on Sunday against the Washington Redskins. Not what you want to see from a player that hits the salary cap with almost $15 million this season.