Fall is finally here, but to football fans the shift in weather and leaves beginning to change colors signifies something totally different: the beginning of the NFL season. You could argue no fanbase on the planet is as fervent as NFL football fans, and to them the start of the season is like Christmas has come early. Rightfully so though, as the NFL and its incredibly volatile nature are emblematic of all the things we as fans love about sports in general and every season serves as another opportunity for history to be made. Though only two weeks in thus far, let’s take a look at how this season looks to be shaping up and who is seemingly in contention to take home the Vince Lombardi trophy.
Photo Courtesy of Bleeding Greed Nation
First, let’s take a look at last year’s two Super Bowl contenders: the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles. Kansas City came up short in their first week matchup against the Detroit Lions, but managed to bounce back this week in their matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars with Patrick Mahomes throwing for 305 yards and 2 touchdowns to lead the Chiefs to a 17-9 win. Philadelphia on the other hand managed to pull out a win in their opening match up against New England, and extended their record to 2-0 after defeating the Minnesota Vikings last Thursday with D’Andre Swift rushing for 175 yards and Devonta Smith recording 131 receiving yards, along with a touchdown for each of them. Philadelphia isn’t the only NFC East team turning heads to start the season though: the Dallas Cowboys also extended their record to 2-0 after thrashing the New York Jets in a 30-10 win, with Dak Prescott completing over 80% of his passes including 11 receptions by CeeDee Lamb for a total of 143 receiving yards. Another team to extend their record to 2-0 this past week was the San Francisco 49ers who pulled out a contentious 30-23 win against the Los Angeles Rams with Christian McCaffrey rushing for 131 yards and a touchdown and Deebo Samuelrecording 101 combined yards on the ground and in the air. The Miami Dolphins also remain undefeated after veteran RB Raheem Mostert rushed for 121 yards and reached the end zone twice in a 24-17 win against New England, and the Baltimore Ravens also managed to remain undefeated after defeating the Cincinnati Bengals 27-24 despite being 3.5 point underdogs leading into the matchup.
Photo Courtesy of Miami Dolphins
While there is still plenty of football left to play before the 2023-2024 NFL season reaches its conclusion, it’s safe to say this season should be just as interesting as any that have preceded it. We’re seeing the rise of new young talent as the previous generation of superstars and franchise players begin to reach the end of their careers, and in that we are also seeing some teams achieve newfound success while others struggle to meet the expectations that their fans have placed upon them after years of success. Kansas City and Philadelphia remain the favorites at most sports books to take home the Vince Lombardi trophy this year, but it’s safe to say that if either team manages to do so it will not be without a few hurdles to jump along the way. With a little over five months and 16 more weeks of NFL football left to play though, absolutely anything can happen and fans are definitely in for another fun year of football.