New kids on NFL block Carson Wentz and Dak Prescott shine for Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys

The National Football League’s opening week has been a strong one for debut quarterbacks as rookies and veterans alike earned passing grades with their new teams.
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz passes during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, September 11, 2016, in Philadelphia. Matt Rourke / AP Photo
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz passes during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, September 11, 2016, in Philadelphia. Matt Rourke / AP Photo

The National Football League’s opening week has been a strong one for debut quarterbacks as rookies and veterans alike earned passing grades with their new teams.

Carson Wentz, the second overall pick of the 2016 draft for Philadelphia, made a favourable first impression in a 29-10 home triumph over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.

Wentz set the tone on the opening drive of the game when he took the Eagles 75 yards down field and capped the march with a perfectly lobbed 19-yard touchdown pass over the shoulder of wide receiver Jordan Matthews.

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“It was huge,” Wentz said of the play.

“Going down and moving the ball and getting that play right away, right off the bat, was huge for my confidence, huge for this team’s confidence.

“I know the people here were rocking. It was a great way to start the year.”

Wentz completed 22 of 37 passes for 278 yards and two scores, while avoiding a turnover.

Dallas first-year quarterback Dak Prescott was similarly thrust into the spotlight when starter Tony Romo suffered a pre-season back injury.

But he was as composed against the New York Giants, pushing the Cowboys on a potential game-winning drive that ultimately ran out of time as Dallas fell to a 20-19 defeat.

Prescott put together methodical drives and has yet to commit a turnover dating back to his breakout performance during the pre-season.

The Minnesota Vikings were left scrambling when starter Teddy Bridgewater sustained a season-ending knee injury last month.

The team acquired Sam Bradford from the Eagles but he is still learning the new offence, so the Vikings turned to Shaun Hill, 36, who steered them to a 25-16 win over the Tennessee Titans.

Houston Texans signal-caller Brock Osweiler signed a US$72 million (Dh264.4m) deal in the off-season to leave the Super Bowl-winning Denver Broncos.

Osweiler tossed two touchdowns in his team’s 23-14 triumph over the Chicago Bears and expressed the same confidence in the Texans that they showed in him.

“There were no nerves there, I knew what kind of football team I had behind me,” Osweiler said.

“I was just excited to get this thing kicked off.”

Despite Osweiler’s departure, the Broncos were able to find success with second-year quarterback Trevor Siemian who won his first ever NFL start with a 21-20 nail-biter against Carolina on Thursday.

RESULTS:

Sunday

• Detroit Lions 39 Indianapolis Colts 35

• New York Giants 20 Dallas Cowboys 19

• Seattle Seahawks 12 Miami Dolphins 10

• Houston Texans 23 Chicago Bears 14

• Baltimore Ravens 13 Buffalo Bills 7

• Green Bay Packers 27 Jacksonville Jaguars 23

• Minnesota Vikings 25 Tennessee Titans 16

• Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31 Atlanta Falcons 24

• Philadelphia Eagles 29 Cleveland Browns 10

• Cincinnati Bengals 23 New York Jets 22

• Oakland Raiders 35 New Orleans Saints 34

• Kansas City Chiefs 33 San Diego Chargers 27 (OT)

• New England Patriots 23 St Louis Cardinals 21

FIXTURES:

Monday

• Pittsburgh Steelers at Washington Redskins

• LA Rams at San Francisco 49ers

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Published: September 12, 2016 04:00 AM

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