2016 was a very strange year for fans of the Minnesota Vikings, after finishing the 2015 season with an 11-5 record (albeit culminating with an agonising play off defeat to the Seattle Seahawks) hopes were high that the Vikings would carry on in the same vein and get back to the play offs as a minimum. The start could not have been better as the Vikings went 5-0 which included impressive wins against the Green Bay Packers and on the road in Carolina against a Panthers team who had appeared in the previous seasons Super Bowl…
New start for Chargers but same old failings
After a pre-season full of optimism, the Los Angeles Chargers got their season off to an underwhelming start on Monday night as they went down to a 24-21 defeat in Denver.
Having swapped San Diego for the City of Angels at the start of the year, the trip to Mile High Stadium was the beginning of a new dawn for the franchise. However, it was the same old failings which cost Anthony Lynn’s men, as a missed field goal with seconds left on the clock proved their undoing. The scoreline doesn’t tell the tale of a game in which the Chargers struggled for three quarters before a fourth quarter rally put them within touching distance.
Here are four things we learned (or had forgotten and were reminded of) on Monday…
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The new football season started on Thursday, although for most Patriots fans not in the way they expected. The five-time champions fell to the Kanas City Chiefs 42-27, which is the most points anyone has ever put on a Bill Belicheck coached team. This was a shock result for most fans as many were predicting a season similar to 2007 where the Patriots went 16-0. However it is not all doom and gloom for Pats fans as the last 3 times the team lost their opener they went on to win the Super Bowl…
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Atlanta Falcons 23 – 17 Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears put up a gutsy week 1 display to almost shock last year’s Super Bowl runners up at Soldier Field. Atlanta would have approached the game with a certain level of optimism and confidence after the two teams respective 2016 campaigns but the Bears stifled last year’s most potent offense at times and had chances to steal an unlikely win.
The Rams were a tough team to predict going into the new season, although expectations were generally low. They had a dire 2016 season with few redeeming features. After a strong start the team went 4-12 on the season, losing 11 of their last 12 games. During this span they were at the bottom of nearly every offensive category, with rookie QB Jared Goff looking lost, previously promising sophomore player Todd Gurley looking average and a Rams receiving corps that wouldn’t look out of place on a high school team.