Week 1 of the 2021 NFL season was full of surprises.
One of the most significant was the sight of the Green Bay Packers being completely demolished by the New Orleans Saints.
Another was the Cleveland Browns holding a double-digit lead over the Kansas City Chiefs, only to blow it up late.
The Packers and Browns have legitimate Super Bowl aspirations this year and aren’t thrilled to start 0-1.
The good news is that the two now have winnable clashes in Week 2.
If either one loses, then a real panic can start to set in.
Packers in prime time
Green Bay scored an impressive three points in Week 1 and will be looking to redeem themselves Monday night against the Detroit Lions.
NFC North Ranking
0-1 Packers (lost 38-3)
0-1 Lions (lost 41-33)
0-1 Bear (lost 34-14)
0-1 Vikings (lost 27-24)
– Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) September 13, 2021
The Packers come in as double-digit favorites on the NFL betting lines, even as the Lions fought hard and threw a close comeback against the San Francisco 49ers.
Still, they still fell eight points and those who make the odds clearly lack confidence in Detroit.
At the moment, it’s really unclear if the Packers are really in danger.
Week 1 was a disaster in all phases of the game and fans expect the team to be at least competent in week 2 and correct any mistakes.
There’s no way the Packers are that bad, is there?
On paper, this should be an easy win.
But the Lions are also hungry for their first win, so if the Packers take them lightly, it could be an interesting game.
Browns face surprise team 1-0
The Browns can also return home and will face the Houston Texans 1-0 this week.
While the Texans starting 1-0 without Deshaun Watson comes as a surprise, the victory came over the Jacksonville Jaguars in what was potentially a clash of the two worst teams in the NFL.
Cleveland is the double-digit favorite and a win appears to be automatic at this point.
– Tom Withers (@twithersAP) September 14, 2021
However, nothing is ever given with this franchise.
The difference between old Browns and these Browns is Kevin Stefanski as a head coach.
He appears to be able to keep the squad stable and the general mood after the Week 1 loss was one of optimism.
The team appear to be in a good position mentally and don’t come across as a group that would take the Texans lightly.
This is how an NFL club should operate.
Baker Mayfield looked great except for a late error in Week 1 and the punter who didn’t drop a snap was perhaps the ultimate difference.
So if the Browns can correct the mistakes, this game has to be an easy win.