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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Hawk sports staff predicts NFL Week

In anticipation of Week 1 of the 2021 NFL season, The Hawk sports staff looks forward to six key games from the first week of play:

Thursday Sept. 9
8:20 P.M.
Dallas @ Tampa Bay:

The defending Super Bowl champions return all 22 starters from their Super Bowl LV squad. The Cowboys will be the first team to face the champs, and the setbacks are already piling up for Dallas. Pro Bowl right guard Zack Martin tested positive for COVID-19 on Sept. 5 and will miss Dallas’s Week 1 matchup. Star quarterback Dak Prescott is also coming off of a season-ending ankle injury and has dealt with a shoulder injury throughout the training camp and preseason. A motivated Tampa Bay team should have little issue beating them. – Aaron Tully ’23

Sunday Sept. 12
1:00 P.M.
Seattle @ Indianapolis:

The Seattle Seahawks are starting Week 1 away against the Indianapolis Colts. This preseason, the Colts have added former Eagles QB Carson Wentz to their offense. Signs are in favor of Wentz starting Week 1, even after injuring his foot during training camp. However, the Seahawks are going to be at an advantage due to Wentz’s lack of experience and practice with his team this preseason. Seattle’s offense, including Russell Wilson, D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, should win the battle against the Colts secondary which placed 20th in passing yards per game last year. – AnnE Potter ’25

Sunday Sept. 12
4:25 P.M.
Miami @ New England:

The New England Patriots cut veteran quarterback Cam Newton on Aug. 31, signaling that Head Coach Bill Belichick and the coaching staff are ready to entrust rookie quarterback Mac Jones with running the offense. A photograph captured after the 2021 College Football Championship shows Jones with a similar body composition to a former Patriots quarterback. You might have heard of him: Scott Secules. I’m kidding. Look for Jones to connect with James White, who returns as the team’s primary receiving back, in a 24-17 win. – Tyler Nice ’23

Sunday Sept.12
4:25 P.M.
Cleveland @ Kansas City:

The Kansas City Chiefs taking on the Cleveland Browns at home is the best matchup in Week 1. The Chiefs ended the Browns’ hopes for a trip to the Super Bowl last year during the 2020 playoffs even after losing Patrick Mahomes in the 3rd quarter to a concussion. This postseason, the Browns have added major weapons to their defense making them one to watch this season. Despite the defensive weapons added, I am taking the Chiefs over the Browns in Week 1. The Chiefs continue to impress with their unstoppable offense including QB Patrick Mahomes, TE Travis Kelce and the fastest WR in the NFL, Tyreek Hill. – AnnE Potter ’25

Sunday Sept. 12
4:25 P.M.
Green Bay @ New Orleans:

Due to damage to the Superdome as a result of Hurricane Ida, this Saints “home” game against the Green Bay Packers will be played in Jacksonville, Florida. Conveniently, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has a 3-4 lifetime record in the state of Florida and a passer rating of just 78.1. Conversely, Jameis Winston, Saints quarterback, won the 2015 National Championship as the quarterback for the Florida State University Seminoles. Winston will take care of the football better than he did in his infamous 30 interception season in 2019. In his first start since LASIK surgery, the meme-worthy QB will “eat a W” and guide the Saints to a 31-27 win. – Tyler Nice ’23

Sunday Sept. 12
1:00 P.M.
Pittsburgh @ Buffalo:

This matchup features two teams headed on opposite trajectories. The Bills are coming off one of the best seasons in franchise history, one where they made the AFC Championship Game. On the other hand, the Steelers won their first 11 games last season before losing five of their final six. The Bills are bringing back most of the difference makers from last year’s squad including franchise quarterback Josh Allen. Meanwhile, the Steelers lost three starters on the offensive line and have a 39-year-old Ben Roethlisberger starting at quarterback. Buffalo is the better team, and they will walk out with a win, but Pittsburgh’s defense is too good for this game to not be competitive. – Aaron Tully ’23

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