Throughout the past few days, from August 11th through August 14th, the NFL had watched all 32 teams in action throughout the first week of preseason football. Some groups had made some progress throughout the first week of the preseason while other teams did not get so much; some sections saw their competition at certain positions shrink a bit, and others still have question marks at certain positions for specific groups, so here is a deep dive of what we have learned from the first week of preseason football.
Battles For the Starting Jobs
During the past week of preseason football, we saw certain players who are in a battle for their teams specific starting position jobs, such as the highly sought-after starting job in NFL France, which is the QUarterback position that special teams have been having these types of competitions for this starting job such as the Carolina Panthers with Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold, the Atlanta Falcons with Marcus Mariota and rookie Desmond Ridder, the Seattle Seahawks with Drew Lock and Geno Smith and of course the most buzz-worthy quarterback competition between Mitchell Tribusky, Mason Rudolph and rookie Kenny Pickett. Based on all of these games this past week, each team saw who could take each of those teams’ starting jobs. For Instance, in the past weekend’s game, all of these quarterbacks got a chance to play in specific offensive drives based on the rotation each team had; some of the veteran quarterbacks had less time than others. Take Marcus Mariota in the Falcons game; he had only completed two passes for 36 yards and no touchdowns, while Desmond Ridder had 10 for 22 completions threw for 103 yards and two touchdowns which I know doesn’t seem like much. Still, it shows that the quarterback battle in Atlanta could almost be done, but we have to see more from both quarterbacks. Another instance of this occurring was in Pittsburgh with the three quarterbacks fighting for the quarterback position, which could be rookie Kenny Pickett’s after the game he had on Saturday night when Pickett had completed 13 for 15 passes for 95 yards and two touchdowns but only will tell if Pickett will be the starter for the Steelers but based on how he did in his first preseason game, there could be a possibility for him to be in the conversation for the starting job. Furthermore, this past week shows that the battles for starting positions in specific organizations will soon wind down or will likely be a down-to-the-wire question mark.
Some Teams Showing Signs Of Being Great This Season
Based on the past week of preseason games, specific teams were looking great for the upcoming regular season, such as the Eagles, Rams, Raiders, Bills,49ers, Broncos, and possibly Steelers. All of these teams looked like they were ready to roll in the regular season with both their regular starters as well as their backups; well, some of these teams could be contenders in their divisions and could be better than they had been in a while, but then again these games are considered practice games but in all most of these teams are showing signs of greatness as we are inching towards the offseason.
Needs Improvement Before the Regular Season
I know it contradicts what I just said about specific teams looking ready for the regular season. Some teams need a lot of improvement before the regular season begins, such as the Jaguars, Jets, Lions, and of course, the Cowboys. The one team that stands out to me that needs improvement is the Cowboys since, based on this past week’s game, they had many penalties, which was something they had a problem with last year, which I thought they would have fixed during the offseason with others things they needed to fix such s decision making insignificant moments which are too essential things they will need to fix before they play the Buccaneers in week one of the regular season. Secondly, the Jaguars need to fix things to chase a great season in the AFC South by competing with the Colts, the only team in the AFC South this season who could have a good season since every other team in that division is in a rebuilding stage. As a result, all of these teams have a specific reason for making certain improvements on the field before the regular season occurs and as training camps wind down.
Furthermore, there have been so many things that have happened from the first week of preseason games, such as more position battles getting more interesting, teams showing some flashes of who they could become in the regular season in just a few short weeks, and other groups possibly having to improve on things to be great this season, so there you have it my take on what we have learned from the first week of preseason and stay tuned for next time.