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Five things to watch in Week 2 of the 2022 NFL season

Five things to watch in Week 2 of the 2022 NFL season
Tom Brady vs Cowboys
Sep 11, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) shakes hands with Dallas Cowboys safety Donovan Wilson (6) after the game at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

After an endlessly entertaining opening weekend, the NFL Week 2 schedule in 2022 has a lot to live up to.

There were both close games and surprise results last week, some of which may have already shaken up the NFL MVP odds or changed who we view as the Super Bowl favorites. It also makes the act of making Week 2 predictions far more difficult than expected.

Surely, things will slow down a little during the NFL Week 2 schedule in 2022. There could be a few lopsided games on the schedule. But there are also five games between division rivals, so things won’t be so cut and dry. Whether you’re trying to make NFL Week 2 predictions or you just want to sit back and enjoy the action, here are five things to look out for during the Week 2 NFL schedule.

NFL Week 2 schedule 2022

  • Chargers at Chiefs, 8:15 ET Thursday
  • Jets at Browns, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Commanders at Lions, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Buccaneers at Saints, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Panthers at Giants, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Patriots at Steelers, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Colts at Jaguars, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Dolphins at Ravens, 1:00 ET Sunday
  • Falcons at Rams, 4:05 ET Sunday
  • Seahawks at 49ers, 4:05 ET Sunday
  • Texans at Broncos, 4:25 ET Sunday
  • Bengals at Cowboys, 4:25 ET Sunday
  • Cardinals at Raiders, 4:25 ET Sunday
  • Bears at Packers, 8:20 ET Sunday
  • Titans at Bills, 7:15 ET Monday
  • Vikings at Eagles, 8:30 ET Monday

Are the Giants for real?

The Giants pulled off one of many surprising results in Week 1 when almost nobody was giving them a chance. But is Brian Daboll really leading a swift turnaround in his first season? Just how much of the win was a result of the Titans falling apart? Most importantly, can the Giants actually string wins together with Daniel Jones at quarterback?

These are all some of the pressing questions as the Giants head into their home opener against Carolina. The G-Men handled the Panthers 25-3 last season, so it’s not farfetched that they could win again this week to get to 2-0. If that happens, the Giants have winnable games against the Cowboys and the Bears in Weeks 3 and 4. Few could have foreseen the Giants getting off to a good start, but if Saquon Barkley stays healthy and the offensive line gives him some help, anything is possible.

Better out of Brady?

Tom Brady was away from the Bucs for a little while during training camp, and that may have been the reason why he wasn’t at his best in Week 1. In fairness, he wasn’t terrible, connecting on 18 of his 27 passes for 212 yards. But with Leonard Fournette chipping in 127 yards on the ground, one might have thought that the Tampa offense would be clicking on all cylinders with Brady at the helm.

Instead, the Buccaneers kept settling for field goals in the first half and only finished with 19 points. In Week 2, the Bucs will play a road game against the Saints, who are always tough at home, especially on defense. If Brady isn’t better in Week 2, this is a game the Buccaneers could lose, potentially leading to some more serious questions.

Can Patriots fall to 0-2?

Could the NFL Week 2 schedule in 2022 end with the Patriots still winless? It’s far from impossible after the way they played in Week 1. Turnovers cost the Pats in a 20-7 loss in Miami, as Mac Jones couldn’t connect with DeVante Parker, leaving a lot to be desired for the New England passing attack. 

On the bright side, the New England defense played well enough to keep the Patriots in the game. The Patriots also have a chance to get to 1-1 against a Pittsburgh team that looked dreadful offensively in Week 1 and needed five turnovers and a lot of luck to beat the Bengals. New England is actually a slight favorite on the road in Week 2, so there’s no reason to jump the gun. But starting 0-2 would be a deep hole considering New England’s roster.

Life without Dak

The Cowboys might be the least enviable team in the league heading into the NFL Week 2 schedule in 2022. Not only is Dallas 0-1 but the Cowboys will also be without Dak Prescott for at least a month. The Cowboys will have no choice but to hand the reins to Cooper Rush against the Bengals in Week 2 and for the foreseeable future.

Even before Prescott got hurt, the Cowboys had glaring weaknesses, especially along the offensive line and the lack of a bonafide no. 1 receiver. Needless to say, overcoming those issues doesn’t get any easier without Prescott. While it’s still early in the season, Week 2 could go a long way toward telling us if 2022 could be a lost season for the Cowboys.

Bounce back for Rodgers and company?

For the second straight season, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers were awful in Week 1. A year ago, it was a 38-3 loss to the Saints. This year, it was a troubling 23-7 loss to the Vikings. The silver lining is that a year ago, the Packers won seven in a row starting in Week 2, ultimately finishing the season 13-4.

But can Rodgers and the Packers do the same this year? Rodgers no longer has the security blanket of Davante Adams.

It’s worth watching how quickly the two-time defending MVP adapts to his current crop of receivers. The good news for the Packers is they play the Bears at home in Week 2. But after all of the surprises last week, it’s not a lock that Green Bay can take care of business.