There’s no season quite like football season. And there’s no week like Week 1, which always seems to consist of some pretty crazy stuff.
Crazy stuff like the Tennessee Titans beating up on Baker Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns. Crazy stuff Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens putting nearly 60 points on the Miami Dolphins. Crazy stuff like the Arizona Cardinals battling back to tie the Detroit Lions. Well, the Lions choking isn’t too crazy.
Now it’s time for Week 2, where there is another great slate of games featuring some premium lineups.
Here are five must-watch games in Week 2:
1. Saints vs. Rams
Sunday, 9/15, 4:24 p.m., FOX
There’s never been a game where more attention will be on the referees than the players. I kid, I kid. Sort of. This rematch of last year’s NFC Championship will be filled to the brim with tension and all of the replays of a blown pass interference call that you can get your hands on. Be prepared to see that missed pass interference call a hundred times on Sunday. But aside from the pass interference of it all, the match-up itself is nothing to shake your head at. The Saints are coming off a thrilling last-second win over the Texans while the Rams escaped with a victory over the Panthers, who nearly pulled off the upset. Drew Brees vs. Jared Goff. This has the potential to be another high-scoring affair. Or maybe one that comes down to a single flag, or lack thereof.
2. Browns vs. Jets
Monday, 9/16, 8:15 p.m., ESPN
Baker Mayfield will have to wait a little bit longer for an opportunity to get back on the field and prove that Week 1’s disappointing performance was an anomaly. But the draw for this Monday Night showdown isn’t just Mayfield. It’s Mayfield vs. Sam Darnold, a battle of the first two quarterbacks taken in the 2018 NFL Draft. Both franchises are betting on their QBs to get them back on track. Both the Browns and Jets are coming off heartbreaking losses, whether it’s a one-point loss to the Bills for New York or a whipping at the hands of the Titans for Cleveland. While both teams are winless, there’s definitely an excitement to this game.
3. Vikings vs. Packers
Sunday, 9/15, 1:00 p.m., FOX
An early battle for NFC North supremacy, the Vikings and Packers are looking to avoid a similar fate from a season ago: The dreaded tie. While both defenses were impressive in season-opening wins, all eyes will be on the quarterbacks, who really didn’t win or lose them the game. Aaron Rodgers only managed to score 10 points against the Bears defense, the culmination of one great Rodgers throw. Other than that, he wasn’t all that impressive. Then there’s Kirk Cousins, who only dropped back to pass 11 times last Sunday, where the Vikings relied heavily on defense and the running game, including Dalvin Cook’s impressive performance. The winner of this game will take an early division lead. But, as a Bears fan, I’d certainly like to see another tie.
4. Eagles vs. Falcons
Sunday, 9/15, 8:20 p.m., NBC
A battle of the birds. A battle of two birds possibly headed in different directions. While the Eagles got off to a slow start in their season-opening win against the Redskins, Carson Wentz led his team to an impressive victory. The Falcons, on the other hand, looked like they’d picked up where they left off last season: Just an overall disappointment in a loss against the Vikings. Matt Ryan needs to get back on track, which will be easier said than done against this Eagles defense. In this rematch of last year’s NFL Kickoff game, let’s hope that it’s more exciting throughout the entirety.
5. Patriots vs. Dolphins
Sunday, 9/15, 1:00 p.m., FOX
Now, this game isn’t going to be remotely close, as evidenced by New England being a 18.5-point favorite on the road. This game will probably be horrible for anyone that’s not a Patriots fan, watching as Tom Brady and co. continue to pile on teams with ease. But the main factor that makes this game must-see TV is the Antonio Brown effect. And that was before sexual assault charges were filed against him earlier this week, which is a new low in the Antonio Brown saga. Not that I expect Brown to ride the bench. We’ve already seen time and time again that the football player is more important than the man.
What NFL games are must-watch television for you in Week 2?