Week 2: NFC South Postgame Storylines

Kyle T. Mosley

NFC South postgame storylines on the Saints foes, Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Jon Gruden and Sean Payton
Saints Sean Payton vs Raiders Jon Gruden

SAINTS INVADE THE DEATH STAR

New Orleans Saints 

New Orleans touched-down in Las Vegas earlier on Sunday.  Sean Payton and his brain-thrust will install final gameplans for Monday night's battle in the desert with the Raiders.

The Saints are a 5.5 point favorite in a historic Monday Night Football affair in the first-ever NFL game in Las Vegas, NV.

Prediction: 41-28 Saints Win over the Raiders

Saints vs. Raiders Early Storylines

FALCONS BLOW IT AGAIN

Matt Ryan lose to Cowboys
Sep 20, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) throws prior to the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons led the Cowboys by 20 points in the first quarter. In that quarter, Dallas had five possessions ending in three fumbles, one punt, and a turnover on downs.

Atlanta was unable to hold a 29-24 lead going into the fourth quarter. The Falcons scored 10 points in the late quarter but gave up 16 points to the Cowboys to lose 40-39.  

What hurts for the Falcons is the fact quarterback Matt Ryan turned-in a solid performance.  Ryan was 24/36, 273 yards, 4 touchdowns with a 126.3 passer rating.  Most of all, zero turnovers by him and the team.

Can Falcons head coach Dan Quinn survive blowing another huge lead in the NFL?  Will the Cowboys finally pay Dak Prescott after his 450 yards passing and 4 touchdowns?

Falcons-Cowboys Storylines  

  • Cowboys 40, Falcons 39: McCarthy's Magicians (SI, Mike Fisher)
  • Falcons Blow 19-point Second-half Lead, Lose 40-39 to Cowboys (SI, Hood)
  • Falcons’ epic collapse against Dallas was an NFL first (AJC)
  • The Cowboys had no business winning vs. Falcons. That is, until Dak Prescott changed the narrative. (Dallas Morning News)

BRADY WINS HOME OPENER OVER SLOPPY PANTHERS

Brady Wins in Home Debut
Sep 20, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) drops back to pass against the Carolina Panthers during the first quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers

Tom Brady guided the Buccaneers to a 31-17 win over the Panthers in their team's home opener in Tampa, FL. Costly mistakes by Carolina's Teddy Bridgewater and the loss of superstar running back Christian McCaffrey contributed to the Panthers' downfall. 

Brady led the Bucs to an early 21 point first-half lead. Running back Leonard Fournette's presence in the Tampa backfield was felt on Sunday. The punishing rusher had two touchdowns off of 12 rushes for 103 yards. Brady connected 23 times for 217 yards, one touchdown, and an interception. Bridgewater tossed 33/42 and 367 yards.  Unfortunately, his two interceptions told the day's story for the former Saints quarterback.

Unless the Panthers can protect the football, convert in the red zone, and limit the big-plays in the secondary, it will be a long year for head coach Matt Rhule's team. The Panthers can move the football and sustain drives, but if McCaffrey is out for an extended period this season, Bridgewater will have to cut down on his turnovers.  Four team turnovers on the day was too much against Tom Brady in any game.

Christian McCaffrey
Sep 20, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey runs the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the third quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Panthers vs. Buccaneers Storylines

  • Turnovers Cost Panthers in Loss to Bucs (SI, Callihan)
  • Tom Brady gets first Buccaneers win as Tampa defeats Carolina 31-17 (Yahoo Sports)
  • Panthers Analysis: Mistakes by Teddy Bridgewater, offense cost Carolina a loss vs. Bucs (Charlotte Observer)
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