One week down, 16 to go.

If week one was good, week two hopes to be better.

SO CLOSE: If you like close contests, then week one was for you.

Kickoff Weekend featured exciting finishes and close games:

•Eleven of the 16 games in Week 1 were decided by seven points or fewer. Fourteen of the 16 games (87.5 percent) were within one score in the fourth quarter.

•Six games in Week 1 were decided by two points or fewer, the most of any week in NFL history.

•Four games were decided by one point – Denver 21, Carolina 20; Cincinnati 23, New York Jets 22; Oakland 35, New Orleans 34; New York Giants 20, Dallas 19 – marking the first time in NFL history that four games have been decided by exactly one point on Kickoff Weekend.

•Nine teams – Cincinnati, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Kansas City, New England, New York Giants, Oakland and Seattle –  won when trailing in the fourth quarter this week, the most in a single week since Week 3, 2011 (10 wins).

Kickoff Weekend continued the 2015 trend of close games, as 75 percent were within one score in the fourth quarter of Kickoff Weekend last season. In 2015, 140 of 256 games (54.7 percent) were decided by eight points or fewer, the most of any season in NFL history.

NO NEED TO PANIC: At the end of Week 2, no more than 13 teams will be able to claim a perfect 2-0 record, leaving at least 19 clubs at 1-1 or 0-2.

Since realignment in 2002, 100 of the 168 playoff teams (59.5 percent) began the year at either 1-1 or 0-2, including six teams last season and three division champions – Houston (AFC South), Minnesota (NFC North) and Washington (NFC East).

DOMINANT DREW: New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees has 61,326 career passing yards, the fourth-most in NFL history. With 36 passing yards on Sunday at the New York Giants, Brees will surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer Dan Marino (61,361) for the third-most passing yards all-time.

The players with the most career passing yards in NFL history:

PLAYER, YEARS (CAREER PASSING YARDS)
Peyton Manning, 1998-2015 (71,940)
Brett Favre, 1991-2010 (71,838)
Dan Marino, 1983-1999 (61,361)
Drew Brees, 2001-present (61,326)
Tom Brady, 2000-present (58,028)

Brees, who passed for 423 yards on Kickoff Weekend, has 14 career games with at least 400 passing yards, tied with PEYTON MANNING for the most 400-yard passing performances in NFL history.

The players with the most 400-yard passing games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (MOST 400-YARD PASSING GAMES)
Peyton Manning – Indianapolis and Denver (14)
Drew Brees – San Diego and New Orleans (14)
Dan Marino – Miami (13)
Carson Palmer – Cincinnati, Oakland and Arizona (8)
Philip Rivers – San Diego (8)
Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh (8)

ELITE ELI: New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning has 297 touchdown passes in his 13-year career. With three touchdown passes on Sunday against New Orleans, Manning would become the eighth quarterback in NFL history to reach 300 career touchdown passes.

The quarterbacks with at least 300 career touchdown passes:

PLAYER (YEARS, TEAM(S); CAREER TOUCHDOWN PASSES)
Peyton Manning (1998-2015, Indianapolis and Denver; 539)
Brett Favre (1991-2010, Atlanta, Green Bay, New York Jets and Minnesota; 508)
Drew Brees (2001-present, San Diego and New Orleans; 432)
Tom Brady (2000-present (New England; 428)
Dan Marino (1983-1999, Miami; 420)
Fran Tarkenton (1961-1978, Minnesota and New York Giants; 342)
John Elway (1983-1998, Denver; 300)
Eli Manning (2004-present, New York Giants 297)

WENTZ’S WONDERFUL START: Philadelphia rookie quarterback Carson Wentz passed for 278 yards and two touchdowns in the Eagles’ 29-10 victory against Cleveland on Kickoff Weekend.

Only four rookie quarterbacks since 1970 have won their first two starts to begin a season. Three of those four players helped their teams qualify for the playoffs, including Joe Flacco of Baltimore (2008) and Mark Sanchez of the New York Jets (2009), who led their respective clubs to the AFC Championship Game as rookies.

The rookie quarterbacks to start and win their team’s first two games in a season since 1970:

YEAR – PLAYER, TEAM (OVERALL RECORD AS ROOKIE STARTER, PLAYOFF RESULT
1983 – John Elway, Denver (4-6, Advanced to Wild Card)
1998 – Ryan Leaf, San Diego (3-6, Missed playoffs)
2008 – Joe Flacco, Baltimore (11-5, Advanced to AFC Championship)
2009 – Mark Sanchez, New York Jets (8-7, Advanced to AFC Championship)
2016 – Carson Wentz, Philadelphia (1-0, ???)*

* 1-0 as starter

BOOMING BECKHAM: New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. has 191 receptions in 28 career games.

With nine receptions on Sunday against New Orleans, Beckham would surpass Miami wide receiver Jarvis LandryY (33 games) as the fastest player in NFL history to reach 200 career receptions.

Landry accomplished the feat last week against Seattle.

The players to reach 200 career receptions in the fewest games:

PLAYER – GAMES TO REACH 200 CAREER RECEPTIONS
Tom Fears – 36
Lionel Taylor – 36
Keenan Allen – 35
Jarvis Landry – 33
Anquan Boldin – 34
Reggie Bush – 34
Odell Beckham, Jr. – 28*
*191 career receptions

KICKOFF NOTES: A look at some team notes from across the league on Kickoff Weekend 2016:

•Denver defeated the Carolina Panthers 21-20 on Thursday night. The defending Super Bowl champs improved their record to 43-13-1 (.768) in home openers, the top mark in the NFL. Denver has won 23 of its past 26 home openers.

The teams with the best winning percentage in home openers:

TEAM (RECORD IN HOME OPENERS, WIN PCT.)
Denver (43-13-1, .768)
Chicago (65-27-4, .707)
Miami (34-15-1, .694)
Dallas (38-18-1, .679)
Oakland (37-18-1, .670)
Note: Ties prior to 1972 did not count in winning percentage.

•Green Bay defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 27-23 on Kickoff Weekend at EverBank Field. The Packers have 55 wins in road openers, the most in NFL history. The Packers’ .585 winning percentage in openers on the road is the second-best mark in NFL history.

•New England, who defeated the Arizona Cardinals 23-21 on Sunday Night Football, now has 32 wins on Kickoff Weekend, tied with San Diego for the fourth-most among AFC teams.

•Denver’s Gary Kubiak (7-3) has a six-game winning streak on Kickoff Weekend, the longest current streak among active head coaches.

•Tampa Bay’s Dirk Koetter (31-24 vs. Atlanta), the New York Giants’ Ben McAdoo (20-19 vs. Dallas) and Philadelphia’s Doug Pederson (29-10 vs. Cleveland) all won in their Kickoff Weekend debuts.

START ‘EM EARLY: Philadelphia rookie quarterback Carson, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, led the Eagles to a 29-10 victory over Cleveland on Kickoff Weekend. Dallas rookie quarterback Dak Prescott, who was chosen in the fourth round (No. 135 overall), also started in Week 1.

The NFL has now had at least one rookie quarterback start in Week 1 in nine consecutive seasons, the longest streak since at least 1950.

The rookie quarterbacks to start in Week 1 since 2008:

SEASON – QUARTERBACK, TEAM (STARTING RECORD AS ROOKIE)

2008 – Joe Flacco, Baltimore (11-5)
2008 – Matt Ryan, Atlanta (11-5)
2009 – Mark Sanchez, New York Jets (8-7)
2009 – Matthew Stafford, Detroit (2-8)*
2010 – Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams (7-9)*
2011 – Andy Dalton, Cincinnati (9-7)
2011 – Cam Newton, Carolina (6-10)*
2012 – Robert Griffin III, Washington (9-6)
2012 – Andrew Luck, Indianapolis (11-5)*
2012 – Ryan Tannehill, Miami (7-9)
2012 – Brandon Weeden, Cleveland (5-10)
2012 – Russell Wilson, Seattle (11-5)
2013 – EJ Manuel, Buffalo (4-6)
2013 – Geno Smith, New York Jets (8-8)
2014 – Derek Carr, Oakland (3-13)
2015 – Marcus Mariota, Tennessee (3-13)
2015 – Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay (6-10)*
2016 – Dak Prescott, Dallas (0-1)
2016 – Carson Wentz, Philadelphia (1-0)

*No. 1 Overall Pick

COOL BREES: New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees passed for 423 yards and four touchdowns against Oakland on Kickoff Weekend. The performance marked Brees’ 14th career 400-yard passing game, tying Peyton Manning for the most in NFL history.

Brees also increased his Week 1 career passing yards total to 4,306, becoming the second QB with at least 4,000 passing yards in Week 1 games (Manning, 4,736).

Brees threw a 98-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Brandin Cooks, the fifth touchdown pass of at least 98 yards on Kickoff Weekend in NFL history. The other four quarterbacks to throw a 98+ yard touchdown pass on Kickoff Weekend? You might know some of these names. They’re either in the Hall of Fame or will be. They are: George Izo (99 yards, September 15, 1963), Sonny Jurgensen (99 yards, September 15, 1968), Tom Brady (99 yards, September 12, 2011) and Earl Morrall (98 yards, September 11, 1966).

FAST LUCK: Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck passed for 385 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 119.5 passer rating in the Colts’ Kickoff Weekend game against Detroit.

Luck has 15,223 career passing yards and reached 15,000 passing yards in his 56th career game, tied for the second-fastest in NFL history. Matthew Stafford accomplished the feat in his 53rd game while Marc Bulger, Pro Football Hall of Famer Dan Marino and Kurt Warner reached 15,000 passing yards in their 56th game.

FANTASTIC FITZ: Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had eight receptions for 81 yards and two touchdowns in the Cardinals’ Kickoff Weekend matchup against New England.

Fitzgerald, who now has 100 career touchdown receptions, became the 10th player in NFL history to reach the milestone.

AMAZING ANDRE: Tennessee wide receiver Andre Johnson had three receptions in the Titans’ opener against Minnesota. Johnson now has 83 catches in 14 career Week 1 games, surpassing Marvin Harrison (81), Reggie Wayne (81) and Andre Reed (82) to move into second place all-time.

Jerry Rice has the most career Week 1 catches with 92. Rice, Reed and Harrison are all members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

FIRST-ROUND FULLER: Houston wide receiver Will Fuller had five catches for 107 yards in the Texans’ 23-14 victory against Chicago. Fuller, who was selected 21st overall in the 2016 NFL Draft, became the first rookie first-round draft pick to gain 100 yards receiving in his team’s first game since Pittsburgh’s Louis Lipp in 1984.

The NFL got “Back to Football” with a thrilling Kickoff Weekend, highlighted by close games and comeback victories.

In Week 1, six games were decided by two points or fewer, the most such games in any week in NFL history. There were four games decided by exactly one point, the most ever on Kickoff Weekend.

Oakland notched a one-point victory (35-34) at New Orleans when the Raiders converted a go-ahead two-point conversion with 47 seconds remaining. They became the fourth team to score the game-winning points on a two-point conversion in the final minute of the fourth quarter and the first to do so in a season opener.

“I was thinking that we’re here to win, so let’s win it right now,” Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio explained to KNBR after the game.

GAMES DECIDED BY ONE POINT (Home teams in CAPS)
DENVER 21, Carolina 20
Cincinnati 23, NEW YORK JETS 22
Oakland 35, NEW ORLEANS 34
New York Giants 20, DALLAS 10

GAMES DECIDED BY TWO POINTS (Home teams in CAPS)
SEATTLE 12, Miami 10
New England 23, ARIZONA 21

There were nine fourth-quarter comeback wins in the opening week, the most Week 1 fourth-quarter comeback victories in NFL history. And, for the first time ever on Kickoff Weekend, eight teams trailed at the end of the first quarter and went on to win the game.

The Kansas City Chiefs overcame a 21-point deficit to defeat San Diego 33-27 in overtime, the largest comeback victory in franchise history. The Chiefs have won 11 consecutive regular-season games and are the first team in NFL history to extend a winning streak of at least 10 games with a comeback victory of 21 or more points.

“It’s pretty sweet,” says Kansas City head coach Andy Reid about the comeback victory. “When you come back in the National Football League from three scores down and win, that’s pretty nice.”

Everybody wants to get off to a good start as history has shown that teams that are victorious in their season openers are more than twice as likely to reach the playoffs than losers of an opening game. But that doesn’t mean an 0-1 start is impossible to overcome as nearly 25 percent of teams that lost the opener went to the playoffs.

Since 1978 when the NFL went to the 16-game schedule (and excluding the abbreviated season of 1982):

Of the 554 teams which won openers… 288 went to the playoffs (173 won division titles)

Of the 555 teams which lost openers… 134 went to the playoffs (77 won division titles)

(Note: There are a different number of winning and losing teams in season opening games due to the fact that the NFL had 31 teams in each season from 1999 to 2001, which creates an odd number for the total number of results.)

Week 2 kicked off with Thursday Night Football presented by Bud Light as the New York Jets visited and beat the Buffalo Bills in an AFC East showdown. The game marked the debut of the “Tri-Cast” distribution model of broadcast, cable (NFL Network) and digital (Twitter) which will be used for 10 Thursday Night Football games this season. CBS and NBC will each broadcast five Thursday Night Football games which will be simulcast on NFL Network and streamed to a global audience across devices for free on Twitter.

On Sunday afternoon, NFL football returns to Los Angeles for the first time since 1994 as the Rams host the Seattle Seahawks in their regular-season home opener at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum at 4:05 p.m. on FOX. And that night in primetime at 8:30 p.m. on NBC, the Minnesota Vikings will open their new home – U.S. Bank Stadium – when they host the NFC North rival Green Bay Packers on Sunday Night Football.

In case you’re wondering, we went 11-5 on picks in week one. Not a bad start but it could have been better.

Here’s a look at Sunday and Monday’s games in week 2…

ATLANTA (0-1) at Oakland (1-0), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 716. Atlanta makes their way to the West Coast for a late afternoon (Eastern) meeting with the Raiders.

The Falcons limp into Oakland on the short end of a 31-24 loss to Tampa Bay last Sunday in the Big Peach. Atlanta trailed 17-13 at the half and rallied to make the contest closer but could come no further. Matt Ryan did throw for 334 yards and a pair of TDs, including one to WR Julio Jones (WR Mohamed Sanu had the other one). Ryan recorded franchise-leading 36th 300+ yard game in Week 1 and is aiming for his third win in a row against the Raiders with 200+ pass yards and a TD. Tampa Bay did manage to outrush the Falcons 90-52 and sacked Ryan three times, holding the Falcons off in a final drive that could have either tied the contest or given Atlanta the win. The Falcons were 3 of 13 on third down tries (1 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 32:23, while the Bucs, led by Jameis Winston’s 281 passing yards (4 TDs), went 3 of 10 on third down, keeping the ball for 27:37.

Oakland, on the other hand, is coming off a hard-earned 35-34 win over New Orleans in the Big Easy. QB Derek Carr passed for 319 yards and TD last week, while throwing the game-winning 2-point conversion to WR Michael Crabtree with 47 seconds left in regulation. The Raiders are 4th team to score GW points on 2-point conversion in the final minute. Oakland trailed 17-10 at the half before they rallied in the final 30 minutes of play, outscoring the Saints 25-17 in the second half. Although Drew Brees threw for four TDs in the contest, Oakland did manage to outrush the Saints 167-88. Both teams were 4 of 11 on third down conversions (New Orleans was 1 of 1 on fourth down) and Oakland ruled the clock, holding the ball for 30:25 to New Orleans’ 29:35.

The Silver and Black may lead the series 7-6, they may have outscored Atlanta 332-292 (which includes games that took place in Los Angeles and at old Fulton County Stadium) but the Falcons have won the last three contests, including a 23-20 win in the Big Peach in 2012. Oakland’s last win in the series came in 2000 on the Left Coast by a 41-14 final.

Oakland’s favored by 4 1/2 and the over/under is 48 1/2. Oakland’s looking to go 2-0, while the Falcons want to keep as close to Tampa Bay in the NFC South. Something’s got to give here. Falcons rise up and take this one on the road and could cover the 4 1/2.

Baltimore (1-0) at Cleveland (0-1), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705. Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens travel to upstate Ohio for a AFC North contest in Cleveland.

Baltimore held Buffalo to a 1 yard TD run from McCoy as they defeated the Bills. 13-7 in Charm City last Sunday. Mike Wallace and Joe Flacco connected for the Ravens’ lone TD in the contest that made it 10-0 early in the first half. Neither club breached the 100-yard plateau and that was the bad news. The good news? Baltimore did outrush Buffalo 83-65 and Flacco did outpace Tyrod Taylor 258-11, although the Bills did manage to sack him four times at M&T Bank Stadium.l Buffalo was 3 of 13 on third down tries in Charm City (they were 2 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 27:07, while the Ravens went 6 of 15 on third down and kept the pigskin for 32:53, going 0 for 1 on their only fourth down attempt.

For the Browns, QB Josh McCown takes over for Robert Griffin III (shoulder). McCown has won 2 of 3 career starts vs. Baltimore and has 4 pass TDs vs. 0 interceptions. Cleveland comes back home after they were taken to the woodshed by the Eagles 29-10 in Philly. Philadelphia outrushed the Browns in the season opener 133-120 and Griffin threw for 190 yards before his injury (he was sacked three times in the contest). Philadelphia held on to the ball for 39:20, while the Browns kept it for 20:40.

The Ravens lead the series 25-9 and have outscored the Browns 788-515 in the 34 meetings. The two teams met twice, split the series, with each winning in the other team’s stadium.

M&T Bank Stadium, week five… Baltimore. The Ravens led 21-16 after 45 minutes of play before the Browns rallied in the final period, scoring their final ten points of the contest when McCown and WR Isaiah Crowell connected on a 22-yard TD pass with 3:03 left in regulation and winning in overtime when Travis Coons connected on a 32-yard field goal to take the road win. Baltimore’s Josh Forsett ran for 121 of his team’s 181 yards, holding Cleveland to 83 and the Ravens defense sacked McCown four times in Charm City. Cleveland went 12 of 19 on third down conversions in the first meeting, holding the ball for 39:16, while the Ravens were 5 of 14 and kept the ball for 29:01.

Round 2… week 12 in Cleveland on a Monday night and it was another close contest. This time, the Ravens prevailed 33-27. Baltimore led 17-13 at the half and outscored the Browns 16-14 in the final 30 minutes of play. The end of the contest was one of the strangest endings in the history of Monday Night Football as Cleveland’s Jeff Tucker tried a 51-yard field goal that would have given them the win. The kick was blocked and Ravens S Will Hill III picked up the ball and ran it back 64 yards for the winning score as time expired. Baltimore outrushed Cleveland again in the second meeting, tallying 104 yards on the ground to the Browns’ 63, although Cleveland did manage to pick off Matt Schaub (who was in for Flacco) twice. Both teams did well on fourth down tries, going 2 of 2. It was third down tries that both clubs struggled with, as the Ravens were 2 of 11 and the Browns were 4 of 15. In a twist of irony, the Browns ruled the clock, holding the ball for 30:30, while Baltimore kept it for 29:30.

The Ravens may be the road team but the boys and girls in Vegas like them as 6 1/2 point favorites with a 42 1/2 over/under. Both numbers make sense. Cleveland makes this one interesting but Baltimore comes away with the win, even though they may not cover the 6 1/2.

Tennessee (0-1) at Detroit (1-0), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 706. The Detroit Lions return to the Motor City to face a Tennessee Titans team that looks to even their record at Ford Field.

Tennessee let a 10-0 lead against Minnesota get away from them as the Vikings, without Teddy Bridgewater, outscored the Titans 25-6 in the last 30 minutes of action to fall 25-16 in Nashville. The contest was not exactly a ground game battle as neither club came close to the 100-yard barrier (Minnesota could only tally 65 yards on the ground, while Tennessee could muster only 64). Marcus Mariota did manage to outpass Bridgewater’s replacement, Sean Hill, with 271 yards and a pair of TDs (Hill had 236 in the air for the Vikings) in the season opener for both clubs.

Detroit trailed Indy 35-34 with 37 seconds left in regulation when Colt QB Andrew Luck and TE Jack Doyle had connected on a 6 yard TD pass that gave them the lead briefly as Detroit got the ball back and Matt Prater connected on a 43 yard field goal with four seconds left. Indy would later see insult added to injury on the kickoff when they got the ball back and tried several lateral passes to move the ball and keep the contest going. T.Y. Hilton threw what he thought was a forward pass from the end zone but the officials saw it differntly, calling it an illegal pass, which meant a safety for the Lions, who took the 39-35 win in the Hoosier State. Detroit outrushed Indy 116-82 but Luck (4 TDs) did manage to outpass Matthew Stafford (3 TDs) 385 to 340.  Both teams did well on third down tries (Indianapolis was 9 of 16, Detroit was 5 of 9) and the Lions ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 30:36 to Indy’s 29:24.

Including contests that were played in Houston when the team was known as the Oilers, Tenneseee leads the series 8-3, have outscored Detroit 289-250 and have taken wins in the last four contests, including a 44-41 overtime win in the Music City. Detroit’s last win over Tennessee? 1995, when they won in Houston by a final of 24-17.

Detroit’s favored by 6 and the over/under’s 47 1/2. If you’re a fan of either team, by all means watch. Otherwise, you might want to watch that “NCIS: LA” marathon on USA. Detroit does their best Katy Perry impression and “ROARS” their way to the win at home, covering the 6.

Kansas City (1-0) at Houston (1-0), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707. It’s an AFC Wild Card rematch in the Lone Star State as Kansas City takes on the Houston Texans.

The Chiefs are on an 11-game regular season win streak and they are the 1st team to extend 10+ game win streak w/ 21+ point comeback victory. Kansas City trailed 21-3 at the half at home against San Diego and rallied to take a 33-27 overtime win over the Chargers. The Chiefs took care of business in the second half and overtime, outscoring the Philip Rivers-led Chargers 30-6 in the last three periods for the win over their AFC West rivals. Although they were outrushed by San Diego 155-83, Alex Smith did manage to outpass Rivers 363-243, while throwing a pair of TD passes and scoring the game-winner in overtime from two yards out. Kansas City was 5 of 14 on third down tries at Arrowhead (2 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 31:06 (including the overtime), while the Bolts went 7 of 15, keeping the ball for 34:01.

Houston had a little problem with Chicago last Sunday but managed to come away 23-14 winners last Sunday in the Lone Star State. Houston trailed 14-10 at the half before the Texans went on to shut Chicago, who was held to 73 yards rushing, out in the second half. J.J. Watt and the Texans’ defense made life for Jay Cutler miserable, sacking him five times in the 9-point win and Houston’s Lamar Miller led all rushers with 106 of the Texans’ 129 yards, while Brock Osweiler (231 yards) threw a pair of TDs, although he was sacked twice. Chicago was 4 of 13 and 0 of 2 on third and fourth down tries and kept the ball for 23:41, while the Texans kept the pigskin for 36:19, going 12 of 20 on third downs.

Kansas City holds a 4-3 lead in the series and have outscored 186-146. They met twice in the 2015 campaign, once in the regular season and once in the postseason and both contests took place in Houston.

Week one… the Chiefs held off a late Houston rally in the season opener for both clubs, with Kansas City coming out on top 27-20. Although they led 27-9 at the half, the Texans would go on to shutout Kansas City 11-0 in the last 30 minutes of action to make things close. The first contest was not much of a rushing contest, with neither club breaking the 100-yard barrier (Houston did outrush Kansas City 98-97) and the Kansas City defense made things miserable for Houston QB Blaine Hoyer, who was sacked four times. Neither club did much on third down tries in that first meeting; Kansas City was 3 of 13, Houston was 3 of 14 (0 of 1 on fourth down) and the Chiefs owned the clock, keeping the ball for 35:19 to Houston’s 24:41.

The second meeting… in the Lone Star State. The AFC Wild Card game at NRG Stadium. Kansas City took a 13-0 halftime lead in the Lone Star State and came away 30-0 winners over the Texans. Although Smith and Blaine Hoyer (four interceptions) were each sacked three times, Kansas City did outrush the Texans 141-114 in the lopside win.

As was the case in the first meeting, neither club reached the 50 percent mark on third down tries but the Chiefs were a little better, going 4 of 11 and kept the ball for 34:25; the Texans on the short end of the shutout loss were 6 of 14 on third down (0 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the pigskin for 25:35.

The Texans are 2 1/2 point favorites and the over/under’s 43 1/2. Someone’s going to be 2-0 at the end of the day. Chiefs pull off the upset in the Lone Star State and cover the 2 1/2.

Miami (0-1) at New England (1-0), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708. It’s a weekend in New England as a pair of AFC East rivals meet in Foxboro. Miami travels north for a meeting with the Tom Brady-less Patriots.

The ‘Fins led briefly in Seattle 10-6 with 4:08 left to play when Ryan Tannehill scored on a 2-yard run before WR Doug Baldwin and QB Russell Wilson connected on a 2-yard TD pass with 31 seconds left to lose 12-10 in the land of grunge, salmon and Starbucks. Seattle outrushed Miami 112-64 and Wilson (258 yards) outpaced Tannehill (186 yards, five sacks) in the contest at CenturyLink Field. Seattle on third down tries? 5 of 16 (2 of 3 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 34:32, while the Dolphins were 3 of 14 and 0 of 1 on third and fourth down tries, holding on to the ball for 25:28.

New England, without Brady or TE Ron Gronkowski, went to Arizona last Sunday night and survived in the desert, coming away 23-21 winners. With Jimmy Garoppolo under center, New England led 10-7 at the intermission and never looked back. The Pats outrushed Arizona 106-92 and sacked Carson Palmer (271 yards, 2 TDs – both to WR Larry Fitzgerald) three times, even though they turned the ball over twice. The Brady-less and Gronkowski-less Pats were 10 of 16 on third down conversions in Glendale and held the ball for 33:59, while Arizona was 6 of 12 and held on to the ball for 26:01.

The Dolphins lead the series 52-46 (which includes contests played at Fenway Park, the old Orange Bowl and Joe Robbie Stadium) and have outscored the Pats 2,116-2,076. The two clubs managed to split the regular season meetings, each taking win in their home parks.

First meeting… week eight on a Thursday night and it was all New England in that matchup, with the Pats coming away 36-7 winners. In that meeting, Brady threw for three TDs, including one to Gronkowski to seal Miami’s fate. New England easily outrushed Miami 95-15 and sacked Tannehill five times, picking him off twice in the blowout. Neither club did anything to write home about on third down tries in Foxboro (New England was 3 of 12, Miami was 2 of 11) but both clubs did reasonably well on fourth down conversions, with the Pats going 1 of 1 and Miami going 1 of 2. Time was on the side of the Pats, who held the ball for 32:37, while the Dolphins kept it for 27:23.

Meeting number two… week 17 in the Sunshine State and the Pats had already clinched the AFC East and this time, it was a much closer contest as the teams went into the final 15 minutes of play tied at 10-10 before Miami rallied in the fourth to come away 20-10 winners. This time, it was Miami that outrushed New England 96-70 and Tannehill threw for 350 yards and a pair of TDs to gain some measure of revenge. Again, both teams struggled on third down tries (New England was 4 of 14, Miami was 8 of 17) and both teams failed in their only fourth down try in the regular season finale and it was Miami ruling the clock, holding the ball for 31:05 to New England’s 28:55.

The Brady-less Pats are favored by 6 1/2 and the over/under? 41 1/2. Both numbers make a lot of sense. The Dolphins gave Seattle a scare last week in the Pacific Northwest, while the Pats held off Arizona in their back yard. New England may not cover the 6 1/2 but they take the win in Foxboro.

Cincinnati (1-0) at Pittsburgh (1-0), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 709. They don’t like each other. They’re both in the rust belt and they’re divisional rivals.

Did we mention they don’t like each other? You might want to send the kids out of the room for this one.

Pittsburgh and Cincinnati meet in the Steel City in a key AFC North contest. Both teams took wins in their season openers and both did the deed on the road.

The Bengals won their season opener against New York last week, defeating the Jets 23-22. Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton passed for 366 yards with a touchdown in Week 1 and wide receiver A.J. Green had 12 catches for 180 yards with a touchdown (54 yards).

Pittsburgh defeated Washington 38-16 on Monday Night Football to open the 2016 season. In Week 1, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for 300 yards with three touchdowns, wide receiver Antonio Brown had eight catches for 126 yards with two touchdowns and running back De Angelo Williams rushed for 143 yards and two touchdowns. The Steelers trailed 6-0 after the first 15 minutes of play in Landover before outscoring Washington 38-10 in the final three quarters. Pittsburgh held Washington to 55 yards rushing (Pittsburgh had 147) and picked off Kirk Cousins twice in the Monday night affair. Pittsburgh was 9 of 14 on third down tries (2 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 33:18, while the Redskins were 3 of 10 and 0 of 2 on third and fourth downs, holding the ball for 26:42.

The Bengals rallied from a 16-13 deficit to come away with a slim 23-22 win in the Meadowlands over the New York Jets at Met Life against Cincinnati would hold them to a pair of Nick Folk field goals in the second half. HB Jeremy Hill would give the Bengals the lead in the second with a 12-yard TD run late in the third and took the lead for keeps when Mike Nugent connected on a 47 yard field goal with 54 seconds left in regulation. Although New York would outrush Cincy 152-57, Bengals QB Andy Dalton did manage to outpass Ryan Fitzpatrick in the air 366-189 in passing yardage. Third down tries? One word. DISMAL. Cincinanti was 3 of 11 and kept the ball for all of 25:07, while the Jets weren’t much better on third down, going 4 of 12, keeping the ball for 34:53.

Pittsburgh leads the series 56-35 and the Steelers have outscored Cincinnati 2,000-1,603. They met three times in the 2015 season, twice in the regular season and once in the post season.

Meeting one… Pittsburgh in week eight at Heinz Field. The Bengals rallied from a 7-6 deficit at the intermission to come away 16-10 winners in the Steel City. Cincy would outscore Pittsburgh 10-3 in the final 30 minutes of play for the road win. Although they were outrushed by Pittsburgh 116-78, Cincinnati did manage to sack Roethlisberger three times, while picking him off three times. Both Dalton and Roethlisberger did manage to throw a TD pass, while Roethlisberger outpaced Dalton in passing yardage 262-231. Both clubs struggled on third down tries in the first meeting (Cincinnati 4 of 15, Pittsburgh 3 of 11) but Pittsburgh did rule the clock, holding the ball for 30:09 to the Bengals’ 29:51.

Round 2… Cincinnati… week 14, along the shores of the Ohio River. As was the case in the first meeting, the Steelers led at the break by a 16-7 score but this time, they held on for the 33-20 win at Paul Brown Stadium. The rushing game in the second meeting? It went Christmas shopping, as neither club breached the 100-yard barrier. That was the bad news. The good news? Pittsburgh did manage to outrush the Bengals 84-64, while forcing three turnovers in the second meeting. Pittsburgh did a lot better on third down conversions, going 8 of 14 and kept the ball for 35:47, while the Bengals were 3 of 8 on third down, keeping the pigskin for 24:13.

They spilt the two regular season contests. It was the post season that things got a bit on the chippy side.

Wild Card Weekend in Cincy and the Steelers took a 15-0 lead into the final quarter of play before the Bengals took their only lead of the contest when Andrew McCarron (subbing for Dalton) and Green connected on a 25 yard pass with 1:50 left to play. The lead would not last very long as the Steelers as Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict (Unnecessary Roughness) and CB Adam Jones (Unsportsmanlike Conduct) were flagged for 30 yards in penalties, allowing Pittsburgh to move the ball close enough for K Chris Boswell to connect on a 35 yard field goal with 14 seconds left. As in the first two meetings, the Steelers outrushed Cincinnati (167-91) and forced four Bengals turnovers. Although both clubs were successful in their only fourth down tries, neither club did anything to talk about on third down (Pittsburgh 2 of 13, Cincinnati 5 of 15) and the Steelers ruled the clock, holding on to the ball for 30:37, while the Bengals found themselves on the short end, keeping it for 29:23.

The oddsmakers like the Steelers at home as 3 1/2 point favorites and the over/under’s 48 1/2. The over/under makes a lot of sense. The 3 1/2? Given that these two offenses can do some damage, that number’s a bit on the light side. This one might be closer but in the end, it might wind up being a pretty good game to watch. Steelers might not cover the 3 1/2 but they win in the Steel City.

San Francisco (1-0) at Carolina (0-1), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. Fresh off their shutout win over the Los Angeles Rams, the San Francisco 49ers head eastward for a Sunday afternoon meeting with Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers.

San Francisco went full throtle on Los Angeles last Monday night in Santa Clara and shut out the Rams 28-0. The 49ers led 14-0 at the half and then proceeded to score two more TDs in the fourth quarter unchallenged. Carlos Hyde ran for a pair of TDs in the blowout win, as his team outrushed Los Angeles 150-65 and picked off Case Keenum twice. San Francisco was 8 of 17 on third down attempts in the late Monday night game and kept the ball for 32:10, while the Rams were 3 of 15 on third down, keeping the pigskin for 27:50 (both teams were 1 for 2 on fourth down tries).

The defending NFC champs return home to the Tar Heel State after their 21-20 loss to Denver last week in the Mile High City. The Panthers let a 17-7 halftime lead against the defending Super Bowl champs get away from them as Denver rallied to take the lead back. Carolina had a chance to win the game and pull off the upset, pulling to within one when Greg Gano connected on a 36 yard field late in the fourth quarter. Gano could have been the hero for Carolina but his 53-yard field goal try sailed wide left, giving Denver the win. Carolina outrushed Denver 157-148 and Newton (194 yards passing) threw a TD and ran for a TD in the contest. Both clubs did quite well on third down conversions in the season opener (Denver was 5 of 10, Carolina was 9 of 15) and the Broncos were successful in their only fourth down try in the contest. Carolina, despite losing to Denver for the second time in a calendar year, did manage to rule the clock, keeping the ball for 32:19 to Denver’s 27:41.

Carolina leads the series 11-7 and the Panthers have outscored San Francisco 448-396. San Francisco’s last win over the Panthers in regular season play came in 2001, when both teams were in the same division by a final of 25-22 in overtime in Charlotte; Carolina has won the last four meetings, including a 10-9 win on the West Coast in 2013.

Carolina’s favored by 13 1/2, the largest spread this season (Seattle was a 10 1/2 point favorite last week against Miami) and the over/under is 45 1/2. This one could be closer than 13 1/2. Carolina’s got a chip on their shoulders, they’re at home and that could be a dangerous combination. Panthers may not cover the 13 1/2 but there’s nothing finer in Carolina as they win at home.

New Orleans (0-1) at New York Giants (1-0), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. Brees. Eli. They meet in the Meadowlands as the Giants hope to make it 2-0, while the Giants are looking to stay unbeaten in the NFC East.

New Orleans fell to Oakland 35-34 in the Big Easy last SUnday. Brees had 423 pass yards, 4 TDs and 131.3 rating last week, marking his 14th career 400-yard pass game, tying Peyton Manning for most in NFL history. Brees had a 98-yard TD pass to WR Brandin Cooks, 5th TD of 98+ yards on Kickoff Weekend in NFL history.QB Derek Carr passed for 319 yards and TD last week, while throwing the game-winning 2-point conversion to WR Michael Crabtree with 47 seconds left in regulation. The Raiders are 4th team to score GW points on 2-point conversion in the final minute. Oakland trailed 17-10 at the half before they rallied in the final 30 minutes of play, outscoring the Saints 25-17 in the second half. Although Drew Brees threw for four TDs in the contest, Oakland did manage to outrush the Saints 167-88. Both teams were 4 of 11 on third down conversions (New Orleans was 1 of 1 on fourth down) and Oakland ruled the clock, holding the ball for 30:25 to New Orleans’ 29:35.

The Giants chipped away a 16-13 deficit against a Tony Romo-less Dallas as Manning and Victor Cruz connected on a 3-yard TD pass with 6:13 left to play to come away 20-19 winnter in Arlington. For Dallas, it was Dax Prescott under center instead of Romo and he managed to outpass Manning 227-207, while Manning threw for three TDs in the NFC East contest. They lead 13-9 at the intermission, before Dallas rallied to take the lead before surrendering it and had a chance to take the win in front of the home folks and had an eight-play drive going before stalling when WR Terrence Williams failed to get out of bounds to stop the clock. Both teams did quite well on third down conversions (Dallas was 10 of 17, New York was 5 of 10) and Dallas ruled the clock, holding the ball for 36:43, while Eli and the G-Men held on to the pigskin for 23:17.

Including contests that were played at old Tulane Stadium, Yankee Stadium and the Yale Bowl, the Giants lead the series 15-13, outscoring the Saints 647-623. The Saints took a 52-49 win in the Big Easy last year (New York’s last win in the series came in 2012 in the Meadowlands by a final of 52-27.

In the week eight affair in the Big Easy, New Orleans led 28-21 at the half before being outscored by the Giants 28-24 in the second half. New Orleans outrushed Big Blue 103-87, with Brees (7) and Manning (6) combing for 13 TD passes in the contest. Bress also managed to outpass Manning 505-350, although he was picked off twice. In the Sunday night affair, New Orleans found success on third down tries, going 7 of 11 (they went 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 34:55, while the Giants were 1 of 8 on third down (2 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 25:05.

The Saints are favored by 6 and the over/under’s 55 1/2. Both numbers make a lot of sense. Both men have Super Bowl rings to their credit. Giants make it 2-0 to start the season, although the Saints could make it closer than the 6.

Dallas (0-1) at Washington (0-1), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 712. Hatfields vs. McCoys. Dogs vs. Cats. Capulets vs. Montagues. Spy vs. Spy. Washington vs. Dallas. They STILL don’t like each other.

Both are coming off losses at home and both look to correct that problem.

A Tony Romo-less Dallas let a 16-13 lead after three quarters get away from them as Eli Manning and Victor Cruz connected on a 3-yard TD pass with 6:13 left to play to fall 20-19 in Arlington. For the season opener in the Lone Star State, it was Dax Prescott under center instead of Romo and he managed to outpass Manning 227-207, while Manning threw for three TDs in the NFC East contest. Trailing 13-9 at the intermission, Dallas rallied to take the lead before surrendering it and had a chance to take the win in front of the home folks and had an eight-play drive going before stalling when WR Terrence Williams failed to get out of bounds to stop the clock. Both teams did quite well on third down conversions (Dallas was 10 of 17, New York was 5 of 10) and Dallas ruled the clock, holding the ball for 36:43, while Eli and the G-Men held on to the pigskin for 23:17.

Washington let a 6-0 first quarter lead get away from them as Pittsburgh defeated the defending NFC East champs 38-16 in Landover last Monday night to open the 2016 season. Washington would go on to be outscored by Ben Roethlisberger 38-10 in the final three quarters for the loss and was held to 55 yards rushing (Pittsburgh had 147) and picked off Kirk Cousins twice in the Monday night affair. Pittsburgh was 9 of 14 on third down tries (2 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 33:18, while the Redskins were 3 of 10 and 0 of 2 on third and fourth downs, holding the ball for 26:42.

Dallas leads the series 66-42-2 and have outscored the defending NFC East champions 2,532-2,113. In the last four games in the series, the two teams have spilt the contests and last year, taking wins on the other team’s field.

First meeting… week 13 in Landover on a Monday night without Romo. Dallas and Washington went into the final 15 minutes of play even at 6-6. Dallas took the lead for the first time when Darren McFadden ran in from 6 yards out with 1:14 left to play. Washington would tie things back up when Kirk Cousins and WR De Sean Jackson connected on a 28 yard pass with 44 seconds left. Dallas had one last trick up its sleeve and used it to march down the field and take the lead back for keeps when Dan Bailey connected on a 54-yard field goal with nine seconds left. Neither club did anything to keep their fan bases happy on third down tries (Dallas had 97 yards, while Washington tallied 73) and Dallas turned the ball over three times. Third down tries? DISMAL and that’s being kind… Dallas was 9 of 9, while Washington was 6 of 16 and Washington did manage to rule the clock, keeping the ball for 32:47 to Dallas’ 27:13.

Meeting number two… week 17 in the Lone Star State. The second meeting wasn’t as close as meeting number one, the Cowboys were still without Romo and out of the playoff picture and the Redskins had already clinched the NFC East. Washington led 24-14 at the half and then pulled away to take a 34-23 win in Arlington. Cousins threw for 174 yards and three TDs, although he was easily outpaced by backup QB Kellen Moore, who had 435 yards and three TDs, despite being sacked four times and picked off twice. Washington on third down tries in the second meeting was much better, going 7 of 14, while Dallas on third down was 2 of 10 (Both clubs were 2 of 2 on fourth down) and once again, the Redskins ruled the clock, holding the ball for 33:58, while Dallas kept it for 26:02.

Washington’s favored by 3 and the over/under is 45 1/2. One team is the defending NFC East champ, while the other has been a dumpster fire the last few years. We like the champ in this one. “HAIL TO THE REDSKINS!” Washington covers the 3 and wins at home in Landover.

Tampa Bay (1-0) at Arizona (0-1), 4:05 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 713. Jameis Winston vs. Carson Palmer. A pair of top QB meet in the desert in Glendale as Arizona looks to break into the win column against Tampa Bay.

Tampa Bay came out of Atlanta 31-24 winners last Sunday in the Big Peach. The Bucs led 17-13 at the half before Atlanta  rallied to make the contest closer but could come no further. Jameis Winston and Matt Ryan put on a passing clinic in the Georgia Dome last Sunday, combining for 6 TDs (Ryan with 2, Winston with four) Ryan threw for 334 yards and a pair of TDs, including one to WR Julio Jones (WR Mohamed Sanu had the other one). That was a good thing, because neither team’s rushing game was anything to talk about, Tampa Bay did manage to outrush the Falcons 90-52 and sacked Ryan three times, holding the Falcons off in a final drive that could have either tied the contest or given Atlanta the win. The Falcons were 3 of 13 on third down tries (1 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 32:23, while the Bucs, led by Winston’s 281 passing yards (4 TDs), went 3 of 10 on third down, keeping the ball for 27:37.

Arizona comes back to the nest with in somewhat of a foul mood, losing at home to a Tom Brady-less New England 23-21. QB Carson Palmer passed for 271 yards with 2 TDs and 104.7 rating last week and has 100+ rating in 8 of past 11 games. Palmer’s favorite target, WR Larry Fitzgerald had 8 catches for 81 yards and 2 TDs vs. New England. The Pro-Bowlerc caught 100th career TD in Week 1, making him the 10th player in NFL history to reach mark. Since entering NFL in 2004, Fitzgerald ranks 1st in catches (1,026) and receiving yards (13,447) with 100 TDs.

Including games played when the Desert Angry Birds were in St. Louis, the series is even with each club taking nine wins but Tampa Bay has outscored Arizona 326-318. Both team’s last wins came in the other team’s backyard; Arizona’s last win came in the Sunshine State by a final of 13-10 in 2013, while the Bucs took a 38-35 win in the desert in 2010.

Arizona’s favored by 7 in the desert and the over/under’s 50. It’s plausible that both numbers could be reached. While it might be closer than the 7, Arizona reaches the .500 mark with the win at home.

Seattle (1-0) at Los Angeles (0-1), 4:05 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 714. HOORAY FOR HOLLYWOOD! There’s going to be a pro football in Los Angeles for the first time since 1994 when the Rams welcome the Seattle Seahawks, who take a 1,137-mile trip down I-5 for an NFC West showdown at the Coliseum.

Seattle trailed at home 10-6 with 4:08 left to play when Ryan Tannehill scored on a 2-yard run and took the lead for kees as WR Doug Baldwin and QB Russell Wilson connected on a 2-yard TD pass with 31 seconds left to come away 12-10 winners in the land of grunge, salmon and Starbucks. Seattle outrushed Miami 112-64 and Wilson (258 yards) outpaced Tannehill (186 yards, five sacks) in the contest at CenturyLink Field. Seattle on third down tries? 5 of 16 (2 of 3 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 34:32, while the Dolphins were 3 of 14 and 0 of 1 on third and fourth down tries, holding on to the ball for 25:28.

For the Rams, it will be their first game in Los Angeles since the Clinton adminstration (1994) and the homecoming could not come at a better time. Los Angeles found themselves on the short end of a 28-0 shutout loss last Monday night in Santa Clara the 49ers. Los Angeles trailed 14-0 at the half and then saw the 49ers score two more TDs in the fourth quarter unchallenged after both teams played a scoreless third period. Carlos Hyde ran for a pair of TDs in the blowout win, as his team outrushed Los Angeles 150-65 and picked off Case Keenum twice. San Francisco was 8 of 17 on third down attempts in the late Monday night game and kept the ball for 32:10, while the Rams were 3 of 15 on third down, keeping the pigskin for 27:50 (both teams were 1 for 2 on fourth down tries).

Seahawks lead the series 21-14, which includes contests that took place when the Rams were in St. Louis and they have outscored Los Angeles 784-702. That’s the good news. The bad news? The Rams swept the season series last year with Seattle (the Seahawks’ last win in the series came in 2014, when they were 20-6 winners in Seattle).

Meeting number one… week one in St. Louis. Seattle led 31-24 late in the game before St. Louis’ Lance Kendricks and Nick Foles connected on a 37-yard TD pass with 57 seconds left in regulation to tie things up. The Rams would go on to win the contest in overtime when K Greg Zuerlein kicked a 37-yard field goal for the 34-31 win. Seattle did outrush the Rams 124-76 but Foles outpassed Wilson (6 sacks, interception) 297-251 in the opener. The Rams were 6 of 11 on third down tries in the first meeting at Edward Jones Dome and held on to the ball for 28:32. Seattle struggled on third down conversions, going 8 of 19 (1 of 2 on fourth down) but did manage to rule the clock, keeping the ball for 37:28.

Round two… the Pacific Northwest in week 16. It was another close contest in the land of grunge, salmon and Starbucks but once again, the Rams prevailed, taking a 23-17 win on the road. St. Louis led 16-3 at the break before Seattle rallied to outscore St. Louis 14-7 in the second half. This time, St. Louis’ running game was functioning, as they outrushed Seattle 102-59 and sacked Wilson four times in the contest. Both teams did struggle on third down tries in the second contest (St. Louis was 5 of 12; Seattle was 8 of 17, 1 of 1 on fourth down tries) but Seattle did rule the clock, keeping the ball for 32:06 to St. Louis’ 27:54.

Seattle is favored by 6 1/2 and the over/under is 38. Since this is the first game in Los Angeles since ’94, this one could be a good game to watch. In fact, because it’s Los Angeles, we’re going to make this one “DRILL WORTHY!” (For those of you that know what The Drill is, you are excused. Everyone else, pay attention. We don’t want any rookie mistakes here, k?) After you go to the 9:30 mass on Sunday (the 4:30 vigil mass on Saturday counts as a mass attended, people! Don’t make us send the nuns after you! If we do, it is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO OVER!), head to your favorite store (a trip to Wal Mart, Target, K-Mart or Costco counts) and get the vittles and the beverages (soda, beer, wine, coffee, et al… if you live in a state that allows the purchase of the items in question) and invite the co-workers, the neighbors (including that really cute kindergarden teacher that knows what to do with a cover-2 defense) and your cousin Connie (remember her? She’s the one that’s been married twice that’s just turned 57
last June and dates a 42-year old ex-Marine, who’s now a football coach at the high school in your town. She’s also the one that ate an entire Oreo cheesecake, two bags of Cool Ranch Doritos, two bacon cheeseburgers with blue cheese and chugged two 2-liter Cokes at your Super Bowl party last year and didn’t gain a pound. You look at her and say to yourself, “what the hell?”

The Rams will at the very least make this one close but Seattle prevails in Tinsletown and gets revenge for being swept last year. Seahawks take this one on the road and covers the 6 1/2.

Indianapolis (0-1) at Denver (1-0), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 715. Two teams with one name in common… Manning… meet in Denver as the Colts travel to the Mile High City to face the Denver Broncos.

The Colts are looking to take their frustrations out on someone after they had led Detroit 35-34 with 37 seconds left in regulation against the Lions. QB Andrew Luck and TE Jack Doyle had connected on a 6 yard TD pass that gave them the lead briefly and we mean briefly. Detroit got the ball back and Matt Prater connected on a 43 yard field goal with four seconds left. Indy would later see insult added to injury on the kickoff when they got the ball back and tried several lateral passes to move the ball and keep the contest going. T.Y. Hilton threw what he thought was a forward pass from the end zone but the officials saw it differntly, calling it an illegal pass, which meant a safety for the Lions, who took the 39-35 win in the Hoosier State. Detroit outrushed Indy 116-82 but Luck (4 TDs) did manage to outpass Matthew Stafford (3 TDs) 385 to 340.  Both teams did well on third down tries (Indianapolis was 9 of 16, Detroit was 5 of 9) and the Lions ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 30:36 to Indy’s 29:24.

The defending Super Bowl champs squeaked out a 21-20 win over Carolina in a Super Bowl L (50) rematch in the Mile High City. Denver trailed 17-7 at halftime before pulling themselves up and taking Carolina to task. Carolina had a chance to win the game and pull off the upset, pulling to within one when Greg Gano connected on a 36 yard field late in the fourth quarter. Gano could have been the hero for Carolina but his 53-yard field goal try sailed wide left, giving Denver the win. Carolina outrushed Denver 157-148 and Newton (194 yards passing) threw a TD and ran for a TD in the contest. Both clubs did quite well on third down conversions in the season opener (Denver was 5 of 10, Carolina was 9 of 15) and the Broncos were successful in their only fourth down try in the contest. Carolina, despite losing to Denver for the second time in a calendar year, did manage to rule the clock, keeping the ball for 32:19 to Denver’s 27:41.

The Broncos lead the series 12-10 (which includes games that were played when the Colts were in Baltimore) and they have outscored the Colts 492-463. They met last year in the Hoosier State and it was the Colts holding off Peyton Manning and the Broncos by a final of 27-24. In the week nine contest at Lucas Oil Stadium, Denver managed to pull even with Indy when Manning and TE Owens Daniels connected on a 1 yard TD pass with 8:54 left in regulation. That tie would not last very long as the Colts marched downfield and took the lead for keeps when Adam Vinatieri connected on a 55 yard field goal with 6:13 remaining. Indy outrushed Denver 120-35 but Manning outpassed Luck 281-252, with each QB throwing a pair of TDs and an intercaption. Denver went 6 of 12 on third down tries and kept the ball for 21:21, while the Colts were 12 of 20, keeping the pigskin for 38:39.

Denver’s favored by 6 and the over/under’s 46. No Peyton here. Denver may not cover the 6 but they win in the Mile High City.

Jacksonville (0-1) at San Diego (0-1), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 717. It’s a 2,340 mile trip along I-10 as Jacksonville travels west to Southern California for a meeting on the Left Coast with the San Diego Chargers.

Jacksonville came up short against Green Bay in Florida’s first city, falling to the Packers 27-23 at EverBank Field. Jacksonville trailed 21-17 at the half and the two teams played even football in the final 30 minutes of play. Green Bay, who outrushed Jacksonville 95-48, held off a late Jaguar rally that would have given the home team the win, stopping three Blake Bortles passes late in the game to end the threat. Bortles (TD) did manage to outpace Rodgers (2 TDs) 320-199 but found himself being sacked three times. Green Bay on third and fourth downs went 7 of 14 and 1 of 1, keeping the ball for 28:37, while Jacksonville ruled the clock, hoolding the ball for 31:23, while going 4 of 15 and 3 of 4 on third and fourth downs.

The Bolts let a 21-3 lead at the half at Kansas City get away from them and fell in overtime to the Chiefs 33-27. The Chiefs took care of business in the second half and overtime, outscoring the Philip Rivers-led Chargers 30-6 in the last three periods for the win over their AFC West rivals. Although they were outrushed by San Diego 155-83, Alex Smith did manage to outpass Rivers 363-243, while throwing a pair of TD passes and scoring the game-winner in overtime from two yards out. Kansas City was 5 of 14 on third down tries at Arrowhead (2 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 31:06 (including the overtime), while the Bolts went 7 of 15, keeping the ball for 34:01.

San Diego leads the series with Jacksonville 6-2, they have outscored the Jaguars 236-144 and have won the last five meetings, including a 31-25 win in Jacksonville last year (Jacksonville’s last win in the series came in 2007, when they came away 24-17 winners in the Sunshine State.

In the week 12 contest on Florida’s East Coast, San Diego led 21-9 at the half before Jacksonville pulled close, outscoring the Bolts 16-10 in the final 30 minutes of play. Jacksonville managed to outrush San Diego 102-79 and outpassed the Chargers 329-300 (Bortles threw a pair of TDs, while Rivers threw four, with each getting sacked twice). Jacksonville on third down went 5 of 15 (2 for 3 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 28:36, while the Chargers were 6 of 14, 1 of 1 as far as third and fourth down tries were concerned and held on to the ball for 31:24.

San Diego’s favored by 3 and the over/under’s 47. You might want to take a pass on this one (unless you’re a fan of either team) and watch that “NCIS” marathon on Ion Network (there’s nothing funnier than seeing Ziva smack Tony over the head!). Chargers “bolt” their way to the win on the Left Coast and cover the 3.

Green Bay (1-0) at Minnesota (1-0), 8:30 p.m. on NBC. They meet again. A pair of NFC North rivals meet in the Twin Cities as the Packers and Vikings open the newest NFL stadium, US Bank Field in Minneapolis in primetime.

Green Bay and Aaron Rodgers needed some help from their defense late against Jacksonville as they came away 27-23 winners in the Sunshine State. The Packers led Jacksonville 21-17 at the half and the two teams played even football in the final 30 minutes of play. Green Bay, who outrushed Jacksonville 95-48, held off a late Jaguar rally that would have given the home team the win, stopping three Blake Bortles passes late in the game to end the threat. Bortles (TD) did manage to outpace Rodgers (2 TDs) 320-199 but found himself being sacked three times. Green Bay on third and fourth downs went 7 of 14 and 1 of 1, keeping the ball for 28:37, while Jacksonville ruled the clock, hoolding the ball for 31:23, while going 4 of 15 and 3 of 4 on third and fourth downs.

The Vikings trailed 10-0 against Tennessee, who was without Teddy Bridgewater, before they outscored the Titans 25-6 in the last 30 minutes of action to win 25-16 in Nashville. As far as the rushing game was concerned, there was nothing to write home about as neither club came close to the 100-yard barrier (Minnesota could only tally 65 yards on the ground, while Tennessee could muster only 64). Marcus Mariota did manage to outpass Bridgewater’s replacement, Sean Hill, with 271 yards and a pair of TDs (Hill had 236 in the air for the Vikings) in the season opener for both clubs.

Including contests that were played in Milwaukee and at old Metropolitan Stadium, the Packers lead the series 58-49-2 and Green Bay has outscored the Vikings 2,397-2,108. They met twice in the 2015 campaign and both took wins on the other team’s field.

First round… week 11 at TCF Bank Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. Green Bay made short work of Minnesota in front of their fans, taking a 30-13 win. Eddie Lacy ran for 100 of the Packers’ 124 yards in the contest, while the Packer defense held Minnesota’s ground game to 94 (Adrian Peterson accounted for 45 of those yards). Even though Rodgers (212 yards) was outpassed by Bridgewater, he did manage to throw a pair of TDs without an interception, while Bridgewater (296 yards) was sacked six times. Both clubs could not breach the 50 percent mark on third down tries (Green Bay went 6 of 16; Minnesota was 5 of 13, 0 of 2 on fourth down) and time was on the side of the Packers, who kept the ball for 30:22 to Minnesota/s 29:38.

Round two… week 17… Lambeau Field. The second meeting was for all the marbles. The winner? NFC North champs. The loser? Wild Card. Green Bay trailed 20-3 after three quarters of play and rallied but fell short, falling to Minnesota in the land of cheese, beer and bratwurst 20-13. In the season finale, Minnesota outran Green Bay 151-76 (Peterson accounted for 67 of their yards) and the Vikings defense sacked Rodgers (291 yards) five times. Third down tries in the second meeting? They went on a milk carton of sorts (Green Bay was 2 of 15; Minnesota was 2 of 11) but both clubs did reasonably well on fourth down (Minnesota was successful in their only try, while the Packers were 3 of 6). Green Bay ruled the clock this time, keeping the ball for 35:42, while the Vikings held it for 24:18.

Green Bay’s favored by 2 1/2 and the over/under is 43 1/2. New stadium. Old rivals in the NFC North (or as Chris Berman calls it the NFC Norris). Both teams are 1-0, which makes this one “DRILL WORTHY!” (for instructions on “The Drill,” see the Seattle-Los Angeles game). Green Bay’s got revenge and would love nothing more than to ruin the party for the Vikings and their fans. Packers cover the 2 1/2 and win in the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Philadelphia (1-0) at Chicago (0-1), 8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN. Week two concludes along the shores of Lake Michigan as the Monsters of the Midway host the Philadelphia Eagles at Soldier Field.

The Carson Wentz era began in the City of Brotherly Love as he passed for 278 yards and 2 TDs with 101 rating in NFL debut in their 29-10 win over Cleveland at Lincoln Financial Field. Wentz became the 1st Eagles rookie to start at QB in season opener since 1939 (Davey O’Brien) and had the highest rating by Eagles rookie QB since John Reaves in 1972 (minimum of 20 pass attempts). Philadelphia outrushed the Browns in the season opener 133-120 and Griffin threw for 190 yards before his injury (he was sacked three times in the contest). Philadelphia held on to the ball for 39:20, while the Browns kept it for 20:40.

Da Bears return to the Windy City after their 23-14 loss to Houston last Sunday in the Lone Star State. Chicago led 14-10 at the half before the Texans went on to shut them out in the second half. Chicago was held to 73 yards rushing and Jay Cutler was sacked five times in the 9-point loss. Houston’s Lamar Miller led all rushers with 106 of the Texans’ 129 yards, while Brock Osweiler (231 yards) threw a pair of TDs, although he was sacked twice. Chicago was 4 of 13 and 0 of 2 on third and fourth down tries and kept the ball for 23:41, while the Texans kept the pigskin for 36:19, going 12 of 20 on third downs.

Da Bears lead da series 28-10-1 (which includes contests that were played when Chicago played at the corners of Clark, Waveland, Sheffield and Addison… Wrigley Field) and Chicago has outscored the Eagles 856-557. Philly won the last meeting between the two, coming away 54-11 in the City of Brotherly Love in 2013, while Da Bears’ last win in the series also came in Philly, a 30-24 win in 2011.

On Monday nights, the Eagles have a better record than Da Bears. Philly is 31-26 and was 1-1 in their Monday night contests last year, while Chicago is 29-36 but picked their only MNF win last year. Chicago’s favored by 3 and the over/under’s 42 1/2. This one might be worth watching, so you might want to tape “The Big Bang Theory” this week. Eagles pull off the upset in the Windy City and covers the 3.

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