Winston helped the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a 26-19 win at New Orleans while Manziel and the Cleveland Browns beat the Tennessee Titans.
Winston’s win was a rare one. According to Elias Sports Bureau, he was the first quarterback chosen No. 1 overall in the draft to start a September road win since John Elway did it in 1983. Since then, rookie quarterbacks drafted No. 1 overall had lost 16 straight road games in September.
With Manziel starting in Week 2, it marked the 14th consecutive season that the Browns have had at least two starting quarterbacks, tying the longest such streak in the NFL since 1950. According to Elias Sports Bureau, only the New England Patriots (1980-93) have had a streak that long in the last 65 years.
Another young gun made NFL history, too. Titans rookie quarterback Marcus Mariota threw for 257 yards and two touchdowns, giving him six touchdown tosses on the season, the most by an NFL player in his first two career games. Mariota has completed 34 of 53 passes (64.2 percent) for 466 yards with six touchdowns and no interceptions for a 129.9 passer rating – the highest rating by any Super Bowl-era quarterback in his first two career starts.
OTHER NOTEWORTHY PERFORMANCES
- The old dog was at it, too. Tom Brady threw for 466 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions in the New England Patriots’ 40-32 win over the Buffalo Bills. After two games, Brady has 754 yards passing, seven touchdowns and no interception, putting him on a list with Peyton Manning as the only players in NFL history to pass for at least 750 yards and seven touchdowns with no interceptions in the first two games of a season.
- Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton threw two touchdowns and rushed for another in a 24-17 win over the Houston Texans. It was the 25th time Newton had both a rushing and passing touchdown in the same game, making him the fastest quarterback to reach that milestone. He did it in 64 games; Steve Young did it in 146 games.
- Arizona Cardinals rookie David Johnson had a 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and a 13-yard touchdown run after he had a 55-yard touchdown reception in Week 1. He is the first player in NFL history with a rushing touchdown, receiving touchdown and kickoff-return touchdown in his first two games to begin a career. His kickoff return for a touchdown is tied for second-longest in NFL history and is the longest in Cardinals franchise history.
- Cleveland’s Travis Benjamin was the top receiver for Manziel on Sunday, catching three passes for 115 yards and two touchdowns (60 and 50 yards). He also had a 78-yard punt-return touchdown on Sunday, putting him in a list with Tavon Austin as the only players in NFL history with a punt-return touchdown of 75 yards or more and two touchdowns catches of 50 yards or more in the same game.
- Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger earned his 107th win, tying him with Terry Bradshaw for most by a Steelers quarterback. Roethlisberger completed 21 of 27 passes for 369 yards and three touchdowns in the Steelers’ 43-18 win over the San Francisco 49ers.
- In that game, Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown had nine catches for 195 yards and a touchdown, giving him 408 career receptions in 72 career games. He tied Kellen Winslow as the third-fastest player to 400 career receptions, trailing only Anquan Boldin (67 games) and Larry Fitzgerald (71 games).
- The Dallas Cowboys helped their former teammate to a dubious distinction. Philadelphia Eagles running back DeMarco Murray became only the third defending rushing champion in the last 30 years to follow up his NFL-leading season with games of less than 10 yards on at least five carries, according to Elias, and Murray has done that two games in row.
- Speaking of dubious distinctions, the New York Giants became the first team in NFL history to lose their first two games when having at least a 10-point, fourth-quarter lead, according to Elias.
- Don’t blame Odell Beckham Jr. for the Giants’ struggles. He became the fastest NFL player to 100 catches, reaching that milestone in only his 14th game played, two games quicker than Boldin, the previous record-holder.