Mahomes-Murray, Lance-Fields among Week 1 first-round QB battles


The 2022 NFL campaign commences this week, and there’s an interesting fact about Week 1: More than half of the games will feature first-round quarterbacks. 

Nine games include two first-round quarterbacks facing off, which is the most since 1967. 

We’ve outlined each matchup and compared each quarterback’s 2021 stats with the upcoming matchup between their teams. 

Buffalo Bills (Josh Allen) at Los Angeles Rams (Matthew Stafford), Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET

Allen: Selected seventh overall in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills. In 2021, Allen threw for 4,407 yards, 36 touchdowns and 15 interceptions, completing 63.3% of his passes. 

Stafford: Selected first overall in the 2009 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions. In 2021, Stafford threw for 4,886 yards, 41 touchdowns and 17 interceptions, completing 67.2% of his passes en route to his first Super Bowl victory last season.

Matchup: Buffalo won its most recent matchup against the Rams, 35-32, in Week 3 of the 2020 season. Last season, the Bills had the best passing defense (163.0 pass yards per game allowed). The Rams are 5-0 in Week 1 under Sean McVay. 

New Orleans Saints (Jameis Winston) at Atlanta Falcons (Marcus Mariota), Sunday, 1 p.m. ET (FOX)

Winston: Selected first overall in the 2015 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In 2021, Winston started only seven games but threw for 1,170 yards, 14 touchdowns and three interceptions, completing 59.0% of his passes. 

Mariota: Selected second overall in the 2015 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans. In 2021, Mariota served as the Raiders’ backup quarterback. His last full season as a primary starter was in 2018 with the Titans, where he threw for 2,528 yards, 11 touchdowns and eight interceptions, completing 68.9% of his passes. 

Matchup: The Saints and Falcons split their season series 1-1 in 2021, with the Saints winning the most recent matchup, 30-20, in Week 18. New Orleans has won four straight road matchups against Atlanta. 

San Francisco 49ers (Trey Lance) at Chicago Bears (Justin Fields), 1 p.m. ET (FOX)

Lance: Selected third overall in the 2021 NFL Draft by the 49ers. Lance only played six games in his rookie season but threw for 603 yards, five touchdowns and two interceptions, completing 57.7% of his passes.

Fields: Selected No. 11 in the 2021 NFL Draft by the Bears, threw for 1,870 yards, seven touchdowns and 10 interceptions, completing 58.9% of his passes in 12 games.

Matchup: The 49ers and Bears faced off in Week 8 of 2021, with the 49ers winning 33-22. 

Pittsburgh Steelers (Mitch Trubisky or Kenny Pickett) at Cincinnati Bengals (Joe Burrow), 1 p.m. ET

Trubisky: Selected second overall in the 2017 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears, Trubisky only played six games with the Bills in 2021, but in 10 games in 2020 with the Bears, he threw for 2,055 yards, 16 touchdowns and eight interceptions, completing 67.0% of his passes. 

Pickett: Selected 20th overall in the 2022 NFL Draft by the Steelers, Pickett is still in competition for the starting quarterback job. 

Burrow: Selected first overall in the 2020 NFL Draft by the Bengals, Burrow threw 4,611 yards, 34 touchdowns and 14 interceptions in his second season, completing 70.4% of his passes, and reached the Super Bowl.

Matchup: The Bengals swept their season series against the Steelers last season, their first sweep of Pittsburgh since 2009. The Steelers’ defense had 55 sacks in 2021, while the Bengals’ offense allowed 55 sacks in 2021.

New England Patriots (Mac Jones) at Miami Dolphins (Tua Tagovailoa), 1 p.m. ET

Jones: Selected 15th in the 2021 NFL Draft by the Patriots. Jones threw for 3,801 yards, 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, completing 67.6% of his passes. 

Tagovailoa: Selected fifth overall in the 2020 NFL Draft by the Dolphins, Tagovailoa threw for 2,653 yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, completing 67.8% of his passes in 2021.

Matchup: The Dolphins swept their season series with the Patriots in 2021, their first sweep of New England since 2000.

Baltimore Ravens (Lamar Jackson) at New York Jets (Zach Wilson), 1 p.m. ET

Jackson: Drafted 32nd overall in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Ravens. Jackson played 12 games last season, throwing for 2,882 yards, 16 touchdowns and 13 interceptions while completing 64.4% of his passes. 

Wilson: Selected second overall in the 2021 NFL Draft by the Jets. Wilson threw for 2,334 yards, nine touchdowns and 11 interceptions, completing 55.6% of his passes in 13 games last season.

Matchup: The Ravens and Jets last faced each other in Week 15 of 2019, with Baltimore winning the game 42-21.

Jacksonville Jaguars (Trevor Lawrence) at Washington Commanders (Carson Wentz), 1 p.m. ET, FOX

Lawrence: Selected first overall in the 2021 NFL Draft by the Jaguars, Lawrence threw for 3,641 yards, 12 touchdowns and 17 interceptions, completing 59.6% of his passes in 2021. 

Wentz: Selected second overall in the 2016 NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles. Wentz threw for 3,563 yards, 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions in 2021, completing 62.4% of his passes.

Matchup: Washington has won four straight matchups against the Jaguars and is 6-1 all-time against them. In their most recent matchup, in Week 15 of 2018, Washington won 16-13. 

New York Giants (Daniel Jones) at Tennessee Titans (Ryan Tannehill), 4:25 p.m. ET, FOX

Jones: Selected sixth overall in the 2019 NFL Draft by the Giants, Jones threw for 2,428 yards, 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions, completing 64.3% of his passes in 2021. 

Tannehill: Selected eighth overall in the 2012 NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins. Tannehill threw for 3,734 yards, 21 touchdowns and 14 interceptions, completing 67.2% of his passes in 2021.

Matchup: The Giants and Titans last faced each other in Week 15 of 2018, with the Titans winning the game 17-0. The Giants have lost five straight Week 1 games. Tannehill (199 career passing touchdowns) needs one more to reach 200, the ninth active QB to reach those heights. 

Kansas City Chiefs (Patrick Mahomes) at Arizona Cardinals (Kyler Murray), 4:25 p.m. ET

Mahomes: Selected 10th overall in the 2017 NFL Draft by the Chiefs. Mahomes threw for 4,839 yards, 37 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, completing 66.3% of his passes in 2021. 

Murray: Selected first overall in the 2019 NFL Draft by the Cardinals. Murray threw for 3,787 yards, 24 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, completing 69.7% of his passes last season. 

Matchup: The Chiefs and Cardinals last faced each other in Week 10 of 2018, with the Chiefs winning the game 26-14. The Chiefs have won seven straight Week 1 games, the NFL’s longest active winning streak in season openers.


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