The NFL season has gotten off to a flying start, and after 6 weekends of action, both conferences are starting to take shape, as teams gear towards Superbowl LVI next February. Here’s three things you need to know if you aren’t up to date on how the 102nd NFL season has gone so far.
Tom Brady is still the G.O.A.T
At the ripe old age of 44, Tom Brady has continued to dominate the league. After an MVP performance in last season’s Superbowl, he has led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to an impressive 5-1 record, putting them top of the NFC South division.
Their only defeat came at the hands of the 5-1 Los Angeles Rams, a team the Bucs could likely face again on a journey to what would be their second successive Superbowl.
Brady’s prowess was best displayed in the Buccaneers’ demolition of the Miami Dolphins, against whom he hit his receivers in the endzone 5 times. Brady threw for 411 yards and 5 touchdowns in the game, the first time he had accomplished this in his career.
Despite his age, he shows no sign of slowing down, and will undoubtedly take Tampa Bay very close to winning their third and his eighth championship ring.
Overperforming – Arizona Cardinals
Not many pundits would have expected to see the Cardinals in this position before the start of the season. Under head coach Kliff Kingsbury they have been flying, winning their first six games and remaining the only unbeaten team in the league.
On offense, they are led by MVP frontrunner Kyler Murray, currently 4/1 on Paddy Power to win the award. Murray has had a sensational start to his third year in the league, with 14 passing touchdowns and a passing completion percentage of 73.8%, the highest of any starting quarterback. Murray also has an array of weapons to hit in the endzone, including superstar wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who has amassed 6 touchdown catches in 6 games.
The Cardinals’ offence is also not their only impressive feature. Their defence, led by future hall-of-famer JJ Watt, as well as All-Pro Safety Budda Baker has been one of the best in the league. After 6 games, they are second best in the NFL for points conceded (18.2), and third best for total turnovers (13).
Their most impressive win came against bitter division rivals the Los Angeles Rams, who they beat for the first time since 2017, winning 37-20 in Sofi Stadium, the Rams’ home stadium that will play host to the Superbowl in February, a game any Cardinals fan will now envision their team reaching given their spectacular start to the season.
Underperforming – Kansas City
Despite a tough schedule, many would have been surprised to see the Chiefs at 3-3 and bottom of their division after six weeks, but if you have watched them this year you would understand why. While Quarterback Patrick Mahomes remains perhaps the most influential player in football, and their offence is still one of the most potent in the league, their glaring issues in defence are alarming ones for a supposed Superbowl contender.
After 6 games, they have the fifth worst defence in the league in terms of both points conceded per game (29.3) and yards conceded per game (410.5). These defensive woes were most apparent in the 38-20 home defeat to AFC conference rivals, the Buffalo Bills. Bills’ quarterback Josh Allen had 4 total touchdowns as he carved up a lacklustre Chiefs defence.
The Chiefs beat that same Bills team only 8 months previous in the AFC conference match, but will struggle to progress that far this season, let alone reach a third successive Superbowl if they fail to improve on things in the next few months.
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