The 2023 NFL Season is in full swing, and with the current season comes some teams off to a hotter start than others. Yes, it is only Week 2 and any team can have a reversal in fortune at any time. But whatever problems any of these franchises may have right now will only hurt them more if not addressed prudently. Some teams bear more glaring problems than others.
For those teams starting 2-0 this season, they are heading in the right direction but remain far from the destination. There is no such thing as a perfect team, and in time, they will lose their perfect record before long.
Here are a few 2-0 teams’ biggest weaknesses after Week 2 of the 2023 regular season.
Miami Dolphins: Defense
The Miami Dolphins are looking to build upon, and exceed, the successes from last season. With an offense led by Tua Tagovailoa, Raheem Mostert, and Tyreek Hill, Miami has made the early jump to the top of the AFC East. This should come to little surprise, when you consider that their offense leads the entire league in passing yards and total yards. Plus, the Dolphins are tied for the third most offensive points scored this season.
But as explosive as their aerial attack is, the same cannot be said about their defense, especially their run defense.
Yes, the Dolphins had to deal with a dynamic running back in Austin Ekeler in the Week one victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. But the Miami defense still gave up 233 yards and three touchdowns from the ground alone. Conversely, Miami significantly improved in this department in their Week 2 win over the New England Patriots. But the passing defense still gave up too many big plays from Mac Jones.
With both wins decided by one possession, the Dolphins have lots of work to do if they want to remain a top contender for the Super Bowl.
Washington Commanders: Turning Close Wins into Dominant Wins
Out of all the teams that started 2-0, the Washington Commanders are arguably the most surprising name in the bunch. Being three out of the four teams in the NFC East who have yet to lose one game, Washington fans have a lot to look forward to in 2023. But in a similar position to the Dolphins, the Commanders must tend to their loose ends and prove that they can win out like the top dogs in the league.
On paper, Washington should have beaten the Arizona Cardinals in Week 1 by more than four points. When you consider the state of disarray Arizona is in right now, it was the opportunity for Washington to pounce. Nevertheless, they took the lead in the fourth quarter and took the victory.
In Week 2 against Denver, the Commanders took an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter and almost blew it. Washington cannot rest on their morals any time soon. As they share a division with the Philadelphia Eagles and the Dallas Cowboys (both 2-0), it will only get tougher for the Commanders from here on out.
Atlanta Falcons: Let ’em Fly!
Many have labeled the NFC South as the worst division in the NFL, with good reason. But the narrative seems to have changed, with three out of four teams at 2-0, including the Atlanta Falcons. With a potent rushing attack and a strong showing on defense, Atlanta is well on their way to turning things around. That being said, one standout flaw needs to be addressed and solved: developing Desmond Ridder.
We’re not saying Ridder is a bad quarterback. But if the Falcons are to regain their playoff presence from the days of Julio Jones and Matt Ryan, Ridder’s growth is paramount to achieving it. Yes, Atlanta has a dynamic running back core in Tyler Allgeier, Cordarrelle Patterson, and Bijan Robinson. But what will happen if defenses eventually keep up with and shut down the running game?
As of now, the Falcons are 27th out of 32 teams in passing offense, relying too much on their ground game. But with weapons like Drake London and Kyle Pitts, Ridder does have a foundation to build his throwing capabilities. The more Ridder throws, the more he learns. And the more he learns, the better he can become as a signal caller.
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