It takes a least a month to realize what lies ahead.
But sometimes, it doesn't take that long. Sometimes, the body of work doesn't have to be so big.
The season started with a bit of whimper last Thursday night when the Green Bay Packers "outlasted" the favored Chicago Bears, 10-3.
And, quite honestly, there weren't a lot of great games or performances in Week 1 outside of the Saints huge comeback win over the Texans, 30-28, on Monday night.
But we did get a good feel of what's to come.
Here are my five quick takes from Week 1 of the 2019 NFL season:
Humble Browns pie
The Cleveland Browns are who we thought they were: Inexperienced (in several areas), cocky, unproven and not ready for prime time … which in the NFL is every Sunday at any time.
The Browns season isn’t over, but they got a quick wakeup call on how tough this league is. The Tennessee Titans, who didn’t make the playoffs, beat the Browns on both sides of the ball and, especially, in the coach’s box. QB Baker Mayfield wasn’t facing Kansas State.
The Browns will be OK, maybe two months from now. While they’re favored against the Jets this Monday night, they will probably be underdogs the next six games (L.A. Rams, @Baltimore, @San Francisco, Seattle, @New England, @Denver).
The brakes have been pumped. The Browns have a long way to go.
No humble pie for Brown
What do we make of Antonio Brown getting himself released and finding himself on the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots?
Good for the Raiders? Definitely.
Good for the Patriots? Probably.
Good for the NFL? Maybe not.
Former coach and current NBC analyst Tony Dungy went out of his way to show his disappointment toward the Patriots and owner Bob Kraft.
Dungy was consistent in his messaging on Brown’s antics, believing something (emotionally?) is wrong with him.
His point about the Brown to the Patriots is less about him joining Bill Belichick and Tom Brady and more about rewarding a player for being a bad teammate.
Falcons crest of failure
There were some disappointing performances in Week 1, with the mouthy Browns leading most lists, but the Falcons were dreadful, losing 28-12, in their opener in Minneapolis.
While Matt Ryan’s stats looked pretty darn good – 33-for-46, 304 yards and two TDs – most of those numbers came after the Vikings jumped to a 28-0 lead.
Since blowing a 28-3 lead in the Super Bowl in February 2017, the Falcons are 17-16, coming off a 5-11 season. And that huge loss Sunday came after the announcement of the huge Julio Jones’ contract.
Coach Dan Quinn is one of the nicest guys in the business, but this ship is sinking fast with the Eagles staring them in the face Sunday.
The N.Y. Jets, led by a “probable” franchise quarterback, Sam Darnold, were going to be the team, in 2019, to pester/bother the New England Patriots.
Then Sunday happened.
A horrific divisional loss to Buffalo, 17-16, will be hard to put behind them. Not only were they playing at home, but the Bills handed the Jets four first-half turnovers, including a defensive TD.
Le’Veon Bell looked pretty good at running back (60 yards rushing, 32 yards receiving, one TD), but nothing really changed. The Jets shot themselves in the foot, missing a point-after and a makeable field goal, and another bad start.
The Bills? Sure they fought, and have a good-looking rookie running back in Devin Singletary, but they are an eight-win team at absolute best with Josh Allen appearing to be an adequate QB.
As for the Dolphins, 59-10 losers, they are the worst team in the NFL, no questions asked. New coach Brian Flores has been stripped of any decent talent, especially on offense, and can’t rely on the Miami heat for success.
The point? The Patriots will not only win the division but should sweep all six games.
Cardinals 'win,' 27-27
The Lions-Cardinals game Sunday was a sight for sore eyes. It wasn’t pretty. The game didn’t have any symmetry, other than the Lions blowing a few chances to win.
But Arizona quarterback Kyler Murray, in his first pro game, showed some of the moxie he showed while winning the Heisman Trophy last November.
While he is a year away from turning heads on a weekly basis, he showed enough, particularly with the Cardinals losing in the fourth quarter, to see why he was chosen No. 1 overall.
He is a play maker. And his lightning quick feet were on display not only as a runner but throwing the ball on the run while avoiding would-be tacklers.
Quarterbacks who played baseball – see Tom Brady, Patrick Mahomes, etc. – have a sharper, smoother release. And Murray, a first-round pick as an outfielder, has that same ability.
The Lions needed to win the game and should have won the game. The Cardinals, on the other hand, are just biding time until Murray is really ready.
His clutch performance in the fourth quarter, including a 2-point conversion pass to tie the game, was not normal.