This Week in NFL History (Sept. 8  to Sept. 14): Super Bowl trophy renamed Vince Lombardi trophy in 1970 

This Week in NFL History (Sept. 8 to Sept. 14): Super Bowl trophy renamed Vince Lombardi trophy in 1970 

Welcome to This Week in NFL History! Every week, the Research team will spotlight the anniversaries of notable events and birthdays.

— Bill Belichick recorded his 1st win as an NFL head coach (Week 2, 1991)

  • Belichick’s Browns won 20-0 at the Patriots
  • CLE Bernie Kosar: 187 pass yds, 2 pass TD & 124.6 passer rating
  • Belichick’s 280 regular season wins rank 3rd in NFL history behind only HOFs Don Shula (328) & George Halas (318)

— Rookie WR Randall Cobb returned a kickoff 108 yds for a TD (T-2nd-longest kickoff return TD in NFL history) in Packers 42-34 win vs Saints in Week 1, 2011

  • Longest Week 1 kickoff return TD in NFL history
  • This was Cobb’s first career game

— Top overall draft pick ARI QB Kyler Murray made his NFL debut in 27-27 tie vs the Lions in 2019

  • 29-54, 308 pass yards, 2 pass TD, 1 INT, 75.2 passer rating
  • 1 of 6 QBs since 1950 to throw for 300+ pass yards and 2+ pass TD in their debut game (Others: WAS Robert Griffin III, CAR Cam Newton, WAS Mark Rypien, STL Ryan Fitzpatrick & WAS Ed Rubbert)

— The Cardinals re-signed WR DeAndre Hopkins to a 2-year, $54.5M contract extension through 2024 in 2020

  • Hopkins’ $27.3M average per year is the highest among WR contracts
  • Leads the NFL with 430 receptions & 5,522 rec yds since 2017
  • Ranked top 3 in targets (160,2nd), receptions (115,T-2nd), rec yds (1,407, 3rd) in 2020
  • Hopkins’ 1,407 rec yards were 34.3 pct of the Cardinals rec yds in 2020 (highest pct in NFL)

— Notable Birthdays: HOF Lem Barney (76) & GB LB Za’Darius Smith (29)

— SF K David Akers made a 63-yard FG (T-2nd-longest in NFL history) in 49ers 30-22 win vs the Packers in Week 1, 2012

  • T-longest Week 1 made field goal in NFL history (Other: OAK K S. Janikowski in 2011)
  • Longest made field goal in 49ers history

— On an injured knee, QB Aaron Rodgers led the Packers back from a 17-point 4th qtr deficit in 24-23 win vs the Bears in SNF season opener in 2018

  • Packers entered the 4th qtr trailing 20-3
  • Rodgers: 286 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT & 130.7 passer rating (212 pass yards & all 3 pass TD occurred in 4th qtr)

— HOF Tony Gonzalez & the Falcons defeated the Chiefs in Gonzalez’s return to Arrowhead Stadium in Week 1, 2012

  • KC traded Gonzalez to ATL for a 2010 2nd Rd pick in 2009
  • Gonzalez: 5 rec, 53 rec yards & 1 rec TD
  • Gonzalez: 916 receptions, 10,940 receiving yards & 76 receiving TD in 12 seasons with the Chiefs from 1997-2008 (all most in franchise history)

— The Rams re-signed CB Jalen Ramsey to a 5-year, $100M contract extension in 2020

  • Ramsey’s $20.0M average per year & $100M total value are both the highest among DB contracts
  • Ramsey is the only DB to make Pro Bowl in each of the last 4 seasons

— Notable Birthdays: HOF Dick LeBeau (84), HOF Johnny Robinson (83), QB Joe Theismann (72) & NE WR Matthew Slater (36)

— The Super Bowl trophy was renamed the Vince Lombardi trophy in 1970

  • Lombardi won 5 NFL championships & the first 2 Super Bowls with the Packers
  • Lombardi died a week earlier on September 3, 1970

— NYJ Sam Darnold became the youngest QB (21 years, 97 days) to start season opener since 1970 merger & led the Jets to a 31-point win vs the Lions (48-17) in 2018

  • 198 pass yards, 2 TD, 1 INT & 116.8 passer rating
  • 1 of 3 QBs to throw pick-6 on first pass in NFL career since at least 1991 (Others: HOF Brett Favre, TB Jameis Winston & WAS Jay Schroeder)
  • First Jets player with 2+ pass TD in his 1st career game

— PIT LB T.J. Watt became the 3rd player since 1982 (when sacks became an official stat) to record multiple sacks & an interception in their 1st NFL game in the Steelers’ 21-18 win at the Browns in Week 1, 2017

  • Watt: 7 tackles, 2.0 sacks, 1 INT (only LB or DL to do so)
  • Others to do so: SEA CB Charles Glaze & DAL CB Tommy Haynes (both strike replacement players in 1987)

— Notable Birthdays: HOF Buck Buchanan

— CAR QB Cam Newton set record for most passing yards (422) in a player’s first career NFL game (since at least 1970) in the Panthers 28-21 loss to the Cardinals in Week 1, 2011

  • Newton: 422 pass yards, 2 TD, 1 INT & 110.4 passer rating
  • CAR WR Steve Smith Sr.: 8 rec, 178 rec yards & 2 rec TD

— MIN RB Dalvin Cook set the Vikings record for most rush yards (127) in NFL debut in the Vikings 29-19 Week 1 win vs the Saints in 2017

  • Cook: 22 carries & 127 rush yards
  • Surpassed Adrian Peterson’s prior record of 103 rush yards set in 2007
  • Adrian Peterson had 6 carries & 18 rush yards for the Saints in his first game as a member of a different team after becoming the Vikings’ franchise leader in rush yards (11,747) & rush TD (97) in his first 10 seasons (2007-2016)

— Notable Birthdays: HOF Tom Landry, HOF Ed Sabol, DAL DC Dan Quinn (51) & HOF Ed Reed (43)

— 3rd Pro Football Hall of Fame class enshrined on September 12, 1965

  • Enshrinees: Guy Chamberlin, John (Paddy) Driscoll, Dan Fortmann, Otto Graham, Sid Luckman, Steve Van Buren & Bob Waterfield

— TE Rob Gronkowski caught his 1st career rec TD from QB Tom Brady in the Patriots 38-24 win vs the Bengals in Week 1, 2010

  • Gronkowski: 1-yard rec TD on only reception of game
  • No player has more receiving touchdowns (84) from Tom Brady than Gronkowski

— HOF Kurt Warner passed for 309 yards & 3 TD in first career start during the Rams 27-10 win vs the Ravens in Week 1, 1999

  • 309 pass yards are the most by a Rams QB in their 1st career start (since at least 1950)

— The Saints re-signed RB Alvin Kamara to a 5-year, $75M contract extension in 2020

  • T-2nd-highest average per year ($15.0M) behind only Christian McCaffrey’s $16.02M & 2nd-highest total value ($75M) behind only Ezekiel Elliott ($90M) among RB contracts
  • Kamara set Saints single-season records in rush TD (16) & scrimmage TD (21, also led NFL) in 2020
  • Kamara was only player with 750+ rush yds & 750+ rec yds in 2020
  • 6 rush TD Wk 16 vs MIN (T-most in a single game in NFL history with Ernie Nevers of the Chicago Cardinals in 1929)

— The Vikings re-signed RB Dalvin Cook to a 5-year, $63M contract extension in 2020

  • 4th-highest average per year ($12.6M) & 4th-highest total value ($63M) among RB contracts
  • Led the NFL with 137.0 scrimmage YPG in 2020
  • First player in Vikings history with 1,500+ rush yards (1,557) and 15+ rush TD (16) in a single season
  • Cook’s 30 scrimmage TD since 2019 are T-2nd-most in the NFL & only Derrick Henry (35) has more scrimmage TD than Cook (30) since 2019

— Notable Birthday: QB Andrew Luck (32)

— The NFL launched a new “Red Zone Channel,” offering fans live action cut-ins of all Sunday afternoon games in 2009

  • The Red Zone Channel is entering its 13th season in 2021

— TEN QB Marcus Mariota became the only QB since at least 1970 to record a perfect passer rating in his NFL debut (min. 10 att) during 42-14 win vs the Buccaneers in Week 1, 2015

  • Mariota: 13-15, 209 pass yards, 4 TD, 0 INT & 158.3 passer rating

— TB Tom Brady (43) and Drew Brees (41) become the first starting QBs, each age 40+, to face off in a regular season or playoff game in the Saints 34-23 Week 1 win vs the Buccaneers in 2020

  • Brees: 160 pass yards, 2 pass TD & 96.5 passer rating
  • Brady: 239 pass yards, 2 pass TD, 2 INT & 78.4 passer rating
  • The Patriots won and Tom Brady lost in the same weekend for the first time since October 23 & 24th, 1999 (Brady, a senior QB at Michigan, lost to Illinois while the Patriots defeated the Broncos to improve to 5-2)

— HOF Terrell Davis rushed for 191 yards & 3 rush TD in 42-23 win vs the Cowboys in Week 2, 1998

  • 11 games with 100+ rush yards in 1998 (T-8th-most in a single seasn since at least 1950)
  • Ended the 1998 season with 2,008 rush yards & 21 rush TD (Led NFL in both) and went on to win MVP
  • 1 of 8 seasons in NFL history with 2,000+ rush yards

— 1st overall draft pick Joe Burrow made his Bengals debut in a 16-13 loss vs the Chargers in Week 1, 2020

  • Burrow: 193 pass yards, 1 INT & 66.1 passer rating; 8 carries, 46 rush yards & 1 rush TD
  • At least 1 rookie QB has started in Week 1 in 13 straight seasons (Longest streak in the NFL since at least 1950)
  • No QB picked #1 overall has won his 1st career start since HOU David Carr in 2002 (such QBs are 0-12-1 in their debut starts since)

— 2019 No. 1 overall pick Kyler Murray tied his debut vs the Lions 27-27 in Week 1, 2019

— Notable Birthdays: QB Brad Johnson (53)

— BAL RB Jamal Lewis set then-NFL record for most rush yards in a single game (295 rush yards) in Week 2 33-13 win vs the Browns in Week 2, 2003

  • Lewis: 30 carries, 295 rush yds & 2 rush TD (82-yard rush TD & 63-yard rush TD)
  • MIN RB Adrian Peterson broke Lewis’ record in Week 9, 2007 with 296 rush yards vs the Chargers

— DEN WR Brandon Marshall had 18 receptions (T-3rd-most in a single game in NFL history) in the Broncos 39-38 win vs the Chargers in Week 2, 2008

  • Marshall: 18 rec, 166 rec yds & 1 rec TD
  • Set single-game record with 21 rec in Week 14, 2009 vs the Colts

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