NFL preseason Week 1 takeaways: Mac Jones environment friendly in Patriots’ debut, Dwayne Haskins impresses for Steelers

NFL

Whereas the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers opened the 2021 NFL preseason with their Hall of Fame game matchup final week, preseason actually kicks off this week, as all 32 groups shall be in motion for Week 1.

It began Thursday evening with two video games, as first-round quarterback Mac Jones helped lead the New England Patriots previous the Washington Soccer Crew in his NFL debut whereas former first-rounder Dwayne Haskins was spectacular because the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Philadelphia Eagles. Three extra video games happen Friday, with the Julio Jones bowl in Atlanta between the Tennessee Titans and Jones’ former group, the Atlanta Falcons, standing out. It is extremely unlikely Jones will play in opposition to his former teammates, however nonetheless.

Saturday is the massive day this week, with 10 video games. Within the afternoon, the Denver Broncos will journey to play the Minnesota Vikings in a homecoming for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater, the Vikings’ first-round choose in 2014, performed for the Vikings from 2014 to ’17 and is competing with Drew Lock to be the Broncos’ beginning quarterback. The NFL’s two latest stadiums will even host their first video games with followers, because the Las Vegas Raiders tackle the Seattle Seahawks at Allegiant Stadium whereas the Los Angeles Chargers play the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium.

The slate concludes Sunday in Indianapolis, because the Colts host the Carolina Panthers. We’ll get our first glimpses at how the Colts plan to interchange injured quarterback Carson Wentz and what Sam Darnold appears like in a Panthers uniform.

Fast hyperlinks:
Full schedule | Depth charts | PickCenter

Leap to a matchup:
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NFL preseason Week 1 schedule

Thursday’s video games

Standout performer: Steelers QB Dwayne Haskins: 16-of-22 passing, 161 yards, 1 TD

Dwayne Haskins received this battle of the preseason backup quarterback struggle with Mason Rudolph within the Steelers’ win in opposition to the Eagles. Haskins accomplished 16 of twenty-two passes for 161 yards and a landing. He orchestrated two extra landing drives and a area purpose drive. Haskins had moments the place he seemed just like the first-round quarterback drafted by the Washington Soccer group, like when he threaded the needle to Cody White for an 18-yard acquire simply earlier than the two-minute warning, however there have been different situations the place he threw wobbly passes, sailed throws or appeared gradual in his decision-making. Rudolph accomplished 8 of 9 makes an attempt for 77 yards, however had promising drives stalled thanks to 2 holding penalties in opposition to Pat Freiermuth and Trai Turner and a 10-yard sack. The backup quarterback battle remains to be a great distance from over, however on Thursday, Haskins did what Rudolph has not by getting the ball into the top zone. — Brooke Pryor

Subsequent sport: vs. Lions (7:30 p.m. ET, Aug. 21)

Jalen Hurts performed two collection and ended 3-of-7 for 54 yards (7.7 yards per try) with a 69.9 quarterback ranking. The largest factor coach Nick Sirianni needed to see was an enchancment in Hurts’ rhythm throws, and Hurts confirmed progress in that space, largely getting the ball out on time and with accuracy, significantly on the primary collection. He was the sufferer of a pair drops and missed on a deep throw to Quez Watkins that might have been a landing, but it surely was a good preseason debut for Hurts, who will look to construct on the efficiency when the Eagles host the Patriots subsequent Thursday. In the meantime, Watkins continues his push for a bigger position within the offense. He confirmed off his jets on a 79-yard catch-and-run late within the first quarter on a go from Joe Flacco. Watkins has been the Eagles’ offensive star this summer time and would possibly simply find yourself within the beginning lineup if he retains it up. — Tim McManus

Subsequent sport: vs. Patriots (7:30 p.m. ET, Aug. 19)


Standout performer: Patriots Okay Quinn Nordin: 3-for-3 FG with an extended of fifty

Cam Newton began and performed the primary two collection (main one FG drive) earlier than Mac Jones changed him and performed the subsequent 5 collection (two FG drives). Newton completed 4-of-7 for 47 yards and wasn’t helped on the opening drive when LT Isaiah Wynn whiffed on DE Chase Young on third down and put Newton in hurt’s method. In the meantime, Jones’ finest throw might need been an incompletion, an attractive deep ball to WR Kristian Wilkerson in the long run zone that went off Wilkerson’s arms. Jones completed 13-of-19 for 87 yards, whereas principally exhibiting command on the line of scrimmage. Invoice Belichick has mentioned Newton is the starter, whereas leaving open the door for Jones to compete for the job when he reveals he is prepared. The hole between them is perhaps closing sooner than Belichick anticipated. — Mike Reiss

Subsequent sport: at Eagles (7:30 p.m. ET, Aug. 19)

Defensive finish Chase Young completed 2020 robust — and began this yr the identical method. He compelled an incompletion when he turned the nook and pressured Cam Newton in what at first seemed like a sack. Younger additionally drew a holding penalty on a run and was in nice place to defend a display as a result of he identified it rapidly. Younger additionally made a pleasant cease utilizing his velocity on a second-and-20 run; on the play, he was blocked inside by the tight finish however Younger rapidly bought round him because the play went to the skin. The again lower up and Younger dropped him for a 3-yard acquire. He confirmed quite a lot of his talent: the power to win off the sting; consciousness on the display and hustle for a brief acquire. He makes flash performs, but additionally quite a lot of little ones that make an enormous distinction. — John Keim

Subsequent sport: vs. Bengals (8 p.m. ET, Friday)

Friday’s video games

Tennessee at Atlanta, 7 p.m. ET

Buffalo at Detroit, 7 p.m. ET, NFL Community

Dallas at Arizona, 10 p.m. ET, NFL Community

Saturday’s video games

Miami at Chicago, 1 p.m. ET, NFL Community

Denver at Minnesota, 4 p.m. ET, NFL Community

Cleveland at Jacksonville, 7 p.m. ET, NFL Community

New Orleans at Baltimore, 7 p.m. ET

New York Jets at New York Giants, 7:30 p.m. ET

Cincinnati at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m. ET

Houston at Green Bay, 8 p.m. ET

Kansas City at San Francisco, 8:30 p.m. ET

Seattle at Las Vegas, 9 p.m. ET

Los Angeles Chargers at Los Angeles Rams, 10 p.m. ET, NFL Community

Sunday’s sport

Carolina at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. ET, NFL Community

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