NFL Week 2 was absolutely loaded with big plays and highlights from many of the superstars around the league.
Some of the biggest performances were engineered by players who haven’t yet made their mark but soon will become household names.
These are the performances that stood out the most, from individual efforts to team-wide domination.
Calvin Ridley, Julio Jones dominated Sunday night
In a “Sunday Night Football” matchup between Atlanta and Philly that failed to deliver much in the way of offense, Calvin Ridley and Julio Jones stood out.
The second-year budding star was the most reliable receiver for either team, bringing in eight receptions on 10 targets for 105 yards and a touchdown. This marked the second consecutive game in which Ridley caught a touchdown to open the season.
Jones had been held to four catches until late in the fourth quarter. Then, on 4th-and-3, down by three points, Jones made the play of the night going 53 yards to the house, putting the Falcons on top for good while scoring his second touchdown of the game.
Chris Godwin just kept making plays
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers eked out a one-score win over divisional rival Carolina on Thursday night. It was a defensive struggle of a game in which Mike Evans was held to just four catches and both teams combined for a total of one passing touchdown.
Godwin was responsible for that lone passing score, breaking loose for a score just before halftime.
All told, this young man hauled in 8-of-9 passes that came his way, going for 121 yards and the score.
Dak Prescott was nearly perfect yet again
The Dallas Cowboys got off to a slow start offensively on Sunday on the road against Washington, and Dak Prescott threw his first interception of the season on a tipped pass. But once he got rolling, the fourth-year quarterback was darn-near flawless.
Prescott got his big day started with a precision strike to Devin Smith that went 51 yards for a score. From there, he just kept dealing strikes. All told, Prescott completed 26-of-30 passes for 269 yards and three touchdowns. He also added 69 yards on five carries to cap off a masterful performance that led to Dallas taking a road game, 31-21, over an NFC East rival.
Patriots defense took no prisoners
The caveat here is that the New England Patriots played against the Miami Dolphins Sunday. And through two games it’s clear the Fins have the worst team in the NFL, and perhaps the worst team in recent memory around the league.
Yet that doesn’t take away from the utter destruction left in the wake of New England’s defense Sunday at Hard Rock Stadium.
The raw numbers are staggering: The Pats racked up seven sacks, four interceptions, including two pick-sixes, in a performance that made fantasy football owners dancing on their barstools. Oh, and the Dolphins didn’t score a single point.
Russell Wilson put the Hawks on his back
Seattle’s road win against Pittsburgh wasn’t pretty. The Seahawks turned the ball over twice on fumbles, and Russell Wilson was sacked four times. But when it was time to put up or shut up, Wilson put up in a big way.
The veteran completed 29-of-35 passes for 300 yards and three touchdowns, including this precision pass to rookie D.K. Metcalf.
Wilson also did work in the run game, gaining 22 yards on six scrambles and acting as a lead blocker for Rashaad Penny on a 37-yard touchdown run.
Dalvin Cook is lightining in a bottle
The Minnesota Vikings lost on the road to Green Bay Sunday, but running back Dalvin Cook did everything in his power to keep that from happening. Registering his second consecutive 100-plus-yard rushing day to open the season, he romped for 154 yards on just 20 carries.
Cook gained 75 yards on a single carry as he roasted Green Bay’s defense with a beautiful touchdown. He also added 37 yards on three receptions to cap off a tremendous individual performance for the Vikings.
Lamar Jackson has huge dual-threat game
The Baltimore Ravens faced stiffer competition in Week 2 than they did in their opener against Miami. But that didn’t stop Lamar Jackson from having another monster game under center for his offense.
Jackson got started early with a pretty touchdown pass to tight end Mark Andrews. He finished with 272 yards and two touchdowns through the air — solid numbers, but nothing outrageous.
It’s what Jackson did on the ground that vaults him into the jaw-dropping category. The second-year quarterback scorched Arizona’s defense to the tune of 120 yards on 16 carries. In the process, he made some more NFL history.
49ers offense was a juggernaut
The San Francisco 49ers are 2-0 to open the season with two straight road wins. That’s impressive. Even more impressive is how they beat the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, imposing their will offensively from the first offensive possession until the final whistle.
San Francisco racked up 27 first downs, 572 total yards and 41 points in a dominant performance. Jimmy Garoppolo only needed 25 attempts to go for 297 yards and three touchdowns. Matt Breida led a relentless rushing attack going 121 yards on just 12 carries. Punter Mitch Wishnowsky was needed just twice all game. Tight end George Kittle only caught three passes, but his physical 36-yard reception in the third quarter epitomized San Francisco’s entire afternoon.
Demarcus Robinson with a career day
A former fourth-round pick out of Florida, Demarcus Robinson came into Sunday’s game in Oakland with a total of 500 yards and four touchdowns receiving. He never had more than 89 yards and one touchdown in a single game. Then, in Week 2 as the Chiefs played without star Tyreek Hill, his stock went into orbit.
The fourth-year receiver hauled in six passes as Patrick Mahomes’ choice weapon in the passing game, racking up 172 yards and two touchdowns.
Oakland had no answer for this young man, who is now on the radar of fantasy football owners nation wide.
Mark Andrews, tight end, Baltimore Ravens
We already touched on the fact that Andrews caught a sweet touchdown pass from Lamar Jackson in the first quarter against Arizona. He did quite a bit more than that, however.
Leading all receivers in the game with eight catches, this second-year tight end totaled 112 yards. He also went over 100 yards with a touchdown for the second game in a row and appears to be a star in Greg Roman’s new-look Ravens offense.