Biggest Surprises of the NFL Season Thus Far

This NFL season has already been filled with many shocks. Certain teams are outperforming expectations, while others seem to be crumbling to the pressure. Players are already starting to make their case for a potential MVP award. Some coaches are starting to feel their seat get warmer and warmer. All of it makes for exciting football. So let’s get into the biggest surprises of the NFL season so far.

Josh Allen leads the league in passing

Wilfredo Lee/AP

If you predicted that Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen would lead the NFL in passing through two weeks, I’d assume you were lying. Even with the addition of Stefon Diggs, Allen making the leap to an excellent passer seemed like a stretch. In his first two seasons, he finished with 2,074 yards and 3,089 yards. He also only completed 52.8% and 58.8% of his passes. Apparently something clicked for Allen this offseason though, considering he leads the NFL with 729 yards through two games. He also is completing 70.4% of his passes, while throwing six touchdowns and zero interceptions. Yes Allen has only played the lowly Jets and Dolphins. It’s still impressive considering where Allen was at this time last season. It’ll be interesting to see if he’s able to keep his hot start going for the duration of the season.

Chase Young leads the league in sacks

Daniel Kucin Jr./AP

When the Washington Football Team selected Chase Young with the second pick in the NFL draft, many people thought he would be good. Defensive rookie of the year seemed like it was going to be Young’s award to lose. While that very well still is the case, Young appears to have his sights on an even greater award. There’s a chance the Washington rookie takes home the defensive player of the year award as well. Through two weeks of the season, Chase Young is tied with T.J. Watt for the most sacks. Young has totaled 2.5 sacks through Washington’s first two games. The rookie appears to be everything Washington was hoping for and more. Young has recorded at least one sack in each game, while also forcing a fumble. Young has been able to continue his dominance from Ohio State, and is already making a name for himself in the pros.

The Vikings are struggling

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

A trendy pick to win the NFC North, the Minnesota Vikings find themselves in about the worst position possible. The team is 0–2, and doesn’t look to be going up. Minnesota has issues throughout the entire team. Their offense is struggling, averaging the third-fewest yards per game. Their defense has been weak as well, allowing the fourth-most yards per games, and the second-most points per game. The Vikings also haven’t done themselves any favors in the turnover department, as they currently have the second worst differential in the NFL. Nothing appears to be going right. It’s one thing to lose to the Packers by nine in week one. It’s another to score a league-low 11 points in week two in a loss to the Colts, who themselves are coming off a loss to the Jaguars. Minnesota has far too much talent to be positioned where they are currently. If they want any chance of returning to the playoffs, they better make some adjustments soon.

What happened to Carson Wentz and the Eagles

Rob Carr/Getty Images

The Philadelphia Eagles are in the same boat as Minnesota. Like the Vikings, the Eagles were a favorable pick to win their division. Also like the Vikings, the Eagles sit with an 0–2 record. This is largely due to the play of quarterback Carson Wentz. Through the first two games, Wentz ranks 29th in completion percentage, 32nd in QBR, and 33rd in passer rating. He also is tied for the most interceptions thrown with four. This has led to Philadelphia averaging the fourth-fewest points, and the fifth-fewest total yards per game. It doesn’t help that the Eagles’ defense has been below average as well. The unit is allowing the seventh-most points per game through two weeks. Now the Eagles have been dealing with multiple injuries. However, last week Miles Sanders and Lane Johnson were both back, and Philadelphia still struggled. The good news for the Eagles is their division is perhaps the worst in football. They should have plenty of time to get things back on track without playing themselves out of a chance at a playoff position.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Jacob Burns

Jacob Burns

University at Buffalo ’20 | BA in Communication | Writer for The Sports Scientist & Kicks N’ Cleats