News

PETER KING BREAKS DOWN WEEK 2 IN THIS WEEK’S “FOOTBALL MORNING IN AMERICA” COLUMN EXCLUSIVELY ON NBCSPORTS.COM

“I haven’t seen a quarterback in my 36 seasons covering the NFL burst out of the gate at the start of a career as explosively as Mahomes.” – King

“It’s dream-like, but is there any reason this team can’t be 6-2 at the halfway point?” – King on the Bills’ 2-0 start

“If [Antonio Brown] plays, he easily could be a redux of the 2007 Randy Moss in New England.” – King

“There’s a theory making the rounds now that they’re not tanking for Tua [Tagovailoa], they’re tanking for Trevor Lawrence.” – Mike Florio on Miami Dolphins on The Mike Tirico Podcast

STAMFORD, Conn. – September 16, 2019 – Peter King breaks down the news and recaps the Week 2 games in this week’s edition of Football Morning in America, available now exclusively on NBCSports.com. King also hands out his Week 2 awards for top players and coaches and speaks with Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen, San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan, and Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp.

On The Mike Tirico Podcast, Mike Tirico, Tony Dungy, Rodney Harrison and Mike Florio recap Week 2 and discuss the injuries to quarterbacks Drew Brees and Ben Roethlisberger.

The following are highlights from this week’s edition of Football Morning in America:

WEEK 2 THOUGHTS

King: “The faith index is low on Kirk Cousins, Doug Marrone, Marcus Mariota, player faith in anything Dolphin-related, and Adam Vinatieri… The faith index is high on Dallas, John Ross, Dalvin Cook, the Niners and Lamar Jackson.”

King: “Most impressive first two weeks (non-New England division): San Francisco going on the road to Tampa Bay, Youngstown (practicing for the week at the home of the Youngstown State Penguins) and Cincinnati, and winning by 14 and 24, mostly due to third and fourth running backs and a stout defense.”

King: “Quarterbacks never get beat up anymore, but Drew Brees (thumb) and Ben Roethlisberger (elbow) will have MRIs today, Sam Darnold will miss a month or so with mono and Carson Wentz might have a rib issue.”

King: “The Steelers, 0-2, have two tough West Coast trips (Niners, Chargers) and a match with Baltimore in the next month. If they have to navigate that road with Mason Rudolph instead of Roethlisberger, it could get late early in Pittsburgh.”

King: “Antonio Brown has hijacked the first two weeks of pro football’s 100th season, and not much should change this week as allegations of assault against him are investigated by the league. In other news, he’s a good football player. He dominated a couple of series at Miami with four days of practice on a new team. If he plays, he easily could be a redux of the 2007 Randy Moss in New England.”

ON THE BUFFALO BILLS

King: “Five of [the next] six in the land of Bills Mafia. It’s dream-like, but is there any reason this team can’t be 6-2 at the halfway point?”

King: “One of the things I noticed watching Josh Allen on Sunday, intermittently, is he seems to be getting out of the habit of forcing the ball.”

Josh Allen: “The big lesson for me this year is be smart with the football. I feel like [offensive coordinator] Brian Daboll and coach [Sean] McDermott have spent a lot of time teaching me how to play football. They’ve really coached me in the little things.”

ON THE SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

Kyle Shanahan on Jimmy Garoppolo: “He’s never scrambled a ton, but you want him to be comfortable enough to do when he has to. And coming off the ACL, it’s good to see him have the confidence to make a play like that.”

Shanahan: “What’s good about these two wins is we’ve won two different ways, with two different styles.”

King: “What I think is really good for this team: with Jerick McKinnon and Tevin Coleman injured, the third and fourth backs, Matt Breida and Raheem Mostert, combined for 204 rushing yards on 25 carries Sunday in Cincinnati.”

ON THE LOS ANGELES RAMS

King: “Watch that incredible 66-yard Cooper Kupp catch and run from the fourth quarter of the Rams’ 27-9 win over the Saints in Sunday’s NFC title game rematch…But he had help. Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods, two stars, were sprinting along with him like they were running for the end zone.”

King: “To see Cooks and Woods blocking the length of the field for Kupp isn’t something you see out of every receiver group, particularly out of receivers who’ve arrived, as those two guys have…It’s also a good example of the culture Sean McVay has set up.”

Kupp: “That is the essence of the team, the connectivity of the team. That play says they care about the team, even when they don’t have the ball in their hands.”

ON ADAM VINATIERI

King: “Adam Vinatieri missed a PAT and two field goals last week, and he missed two of three PATs on Sunday. Going back to the last game of the last season, when Vinatieri missed two more PATs, he’s missed an alarming seven kicks in the last three games…Pro Football Talk reported Sunday night that ‘signs are pointing toward a retirement announcement on Monday.’”

King: “But his legacy, regardless what this week brings, will end with a yellow jacket and bronze bust.”

KING’S WEEK 1 AWARDS

Offensive Players of the Week: Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City & David Quessenberry, Tennessee

King on Mahomes: “I haven’t seen a quarterback in my 36 seasons covering the NFL burst out of the gate at the start of a career as explosively as Mahomes.”

King on Quessenberry: “Quessenberry, drafted in the sixth round by Houston in 2013, was diagnosed with lymphoma and a mass in his lungs in April 2014 and spent the next three-and-a-half years battling the cancer…David, whatever happens in your career from here, you’ll always have your NFL touchdown.”

Coach of the Week: Bill Belichick, New England.

King: “Two straight years he’s lost his defensive chiefs (Matt Patricia, Brian Flores), and in the first two games of the season, New England has held Pittsburgh and (Triple-A) Miami to three points in eight quarters.”

Goat of the Week: Kirk Cousins, Minnesota

King: “Cousins has been a disappointment in big moments for the Vikings. That might be the understatement of the month.”

THE MIKE TIRICO PODCAST

Mike Florio on Miami Dolphins: “There’s a theory making the rounds now that they’re not tanking for Tua [Tagovailoa], they’re tanking for Trevor Lawrence.”

Tony Dungy on Steelers & Saints: “I think they’ll both struggle. The Steelers don’t rely on Ben Roethlisberger as much, but their defense has not been playing as well. The Saints – everything in that offense revolves around Drew Brees. I think that’s going to be very difficult for them if he’s out.”

Rodney Harrison on San Francisco: “They have weapons…They have a quarterback who is starting to gain his confidence in Jimmy Garoppolo.”

Dungy on Buffalo: “You can believe in Buffalo. They’re not going to win the division, but I think they’re going to be pretty good this year…Josh Allen is making plays.”

Read the rest of the column here and catch the weekly Peter King Podcast here.

A new “Football Morning in America” posts every Monday morning exclusively on NBCSports.com through the NFL season. It was announced in May that King signed an exclusive agreement with NBC Sports Group that included writing a weekly Monday morning NFL column for NBCSports.com; making regular appearances on NBCSN’s and NBC Sports Radio’s PFT Live with Mike Florio; and continuing to contribute to Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports.

--FOOTBALL MORNING IN AMERICA--

Media contacts

Jake Gellerman

203-356-2795

Jake.Gellerman@nbcuni.com