The Buccaneers were better than the Saints last year. The Bengals were better than the Colts. The Panthers were better than the Cowboys. The Packers were better than the Bears. And the Broncos were better than the Seahawks.
At least, they were in Week One.
Those were five Week One matchups from the 2018 season that have one thing in common: In all five cases, the team that won in Week One missed the playoffs, and the team that lost in Week One made the playoffs.
Those games are a good reminder not to overreact to Week One results. Yes, the Bucs beat the Saints in Week One, but the Saints ended up in the NFC Championship Game while the Bucs ended up in last place. The Bengals beat the Colts in Week One, but the Colts won a playoff game and the Bengals ended up in last place. The Panthers beat the Cowboys in Week One, but the Cowboys won a playoff game and the Panthers were 7-9. The Packers beat the Bears in Week One, but the Bears ran away from the field in the NFC North. The Broncos beat the Seahawks in Week One, but the Seahawks went 10-5 while the Broncos went 5-10 the rest of the way.
That doesn’t mean Week One doesn’t matter; every week matters. But there’s a whole lot we still don’t know when every team is 0-1 or 1-0.