2 weeks of NFL action have passed, and finally, we’ve had a QB (Jay Cutler) pass for 4 touchdowns in a game. This week featured a lot of upsets, so much so that pick’ems across the league were destroyed.
But enough of that. It’s time to present the NFL Week 2 Awards. These go out to the best of the best on offense, defense, special teams, and overall teams.
Best QB: Philip Rivers (San Diego Chargers)
The Legion of Boom has destroyed nearly every team with a capable QB, having made QBs such as Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, and Aaron Rodgers look like Brandon Weeden. But one QB saw through the Seahawks secondary and carved them up for 28/37 (75.7 Completion Percentage), 284 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT, and a 124.2 passer rating.
That QB is Philip Rivers.
Anyone who’s watched Rivers at his absolute best can’t deny the accuracy he possesses as a passer. And on Sunday, he gave the Seahawks defense a fight they ultimately could not handle. Rivers reigned supreme under pressure, and though the mechanics of his throws looked ugly, the accuracy was beautiful.
Rivers made very few mistakes and provided 3 excellent touchdown passes to Chargers tight end Antonio Gates (his last one is one of the best throws I’ve ever seen a quarterback make). Ultimately, thanks to Philip, the Chargers won the game 30-21, shocking the NFL and giving San Diego a huge boost in the power rankings.
Honorable Mentions: Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler, Peyton Manning, Eli Manning
Best RB: DeMarco Murray (Dallas Cowboys)
Despite fumbling, DeMarco Murray had the best RB performance of week 2.
Murray had a masterful game, rushing for 167 yards on 29 carries, a touchdown, and 5.8 yards per carry. Murray ultimately provided the spark in what was a 26-10 Dallas Cowboys victory over the Tennessee Titans.
Murray had been highly regarded among NFL experts, and for good reason. Though a little tweaking is needed to commit less turnovers, Murray has the capability of breaking out as a top 5 running back with performances like this.
Honorable Mentions: Bobby Rainey, Arian Foster, Mark Ingram, Bernard Pierce
Best WR: Jordy Nelson (Green Bay Packers)
No disrespect to Darren Sproles; he had a hell of a performance on Monday Night, but Jordy Nelson simply had that good of a performance.
With 9 receptions for 209 yards, 1 TD, and 23.2 yards per reception, Nelson (along with Aaron Rodgers) guided the Packers to an improbable 31-24 comeback victory over the New York Jets after being doing by as many as 18. Nelson’s athleticism and speed was too much for the Jets to handle in the 2nd half, and has so far earned his extension from earlier this year.
Honorable Mentions: Darren Sproles, Sammy Watkins, Mohamed Sanu, Mercedes Lewis
Best TE: Antonio Gates (San Diego Chargers)
Joining Philip Rivers on the awards list is future HOF TE Antonio Gates. Gates proved he still has a little juice left in him, giving us 7 receptions for 96 yards, 3 awesome TD catches, and 13.7 yards per reception.
Long has Gates been one of the best tight ends in the NFL, and there’s no slowing him down even as he continue to age. Guess you can say he ages like wine.
Honorable Mentions: Jimmy Graham, Delanie Walker, Niles Paul, Zach Ertz
Defensive Player of the Week: Chandler Jones (New England Patriots)
JJ Watt has been dethroned for at least a week.
Patriots DE Chandler Jones had the best performance from any defensive player in week 2. Jones posted 2 sacks, 3 quarterback hits, 4 hurries, and a blocked field goal, which he returned for a touchdown. He provided a defensive boost in New England’s 30-7 victory over the Minnesota Vikings.
Best Kicker: Justin Tucker (Baltimore Ravens)
24 years young, Justin Tucker has already given us many memorable kicks. And on week 2, Tucker completed 4/4 field goal attempts, as well as 2 extra point kicks. He was an essential part in the Ravens’ 26-6 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Biggest Upset: Cleveland Browns
No one in a million years could’ve imagined the Cleveland Browns would beat the New Orleans Saints 26-24, sending them on an 0-2 path.
But that’s exactly what Cleveland did.
Drew Brees struggled throughout the entire game, and even when he was able to get things together after a nasty pick six, it was only for a brief moment, as Brian Hoyer led the Browns to an 85 yard drive, which exposed obvious flaws the Saints defense had.
Ultimately, the game ended on Billy Cundiff’s game winning 29-yard field goal, and gave HC Mike Pettine his first win as a head coach.
The Saints are in a huge hole, while the Browns gain momentum after one of the biggest victories in recent franchise history.
Best Team: Chicago Bears
The Windy City provided week 2’s 2nd biggest upset, as the team rallied on a 28-3 scoring run after trailing 17-0. The offense took control in the 2nd half, as Jay Cutler threw 4 TD for a signature performance. Brandon Marshall took home 3 TD catches, and TE Martellus Bennett took home 1.
The defense forced 3 Colin Kaepernick interceptions in the 2nd half, and the amount of pressure was too much for the 49ers to handle, as the Bears prevailed 28-20.
Despite an ugly start, the Bears gained huge momentum in the NFC North after the victory, and showed that they have the necessary ingredients to make a playoff spot in 2014.