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Notable Week 1 NFL rookie performances

The NFL returned with a resounding success as all 32 teams hit the gridiron for the first time during the 2020 season.

The reigning Super Bowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs, kicked off the campaign with a victory over the Houston Texans. The Chiefs looked like they have not missed a beat during the offseason.

On Sunday, the rest of the league got their time in the spotlight. Tom Brady made his debut with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule coached in his first NFL game.

While some teams looked a bit rusty, the quality of the NFL Week 1 slate looked the same given the circumstances. No fans were in attendance, outside of Kansas City and Jacksonville, but that did not hinder the play on the field.

With the NFL looking to take every precaution amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Week 1 was a reminder that things are different this season. However, between the whistles, the game is still true to form.

There was still the hard-hitting action and high-scoring affairs. The end zone celebrations were still in vogue and of course, penalties were prevalent.

It looked like your standard Week 1 NFL season. That was the biggest takeaway from the weekend as the entertaining play brought a sense of normalcy.

Contributing to that normalcy was the debut of NFL rookies.

No. 1 overall pick Joe Burrow made his first NFL start for the Cincinnati Bengals and nearly led them to win in the season opener. Notable rookies Chase Young, Clyde Edwards-Helaire and CeeDee Lamb also looked as good as advertised.

The 2020 rookie class got a taste of the NFL experience. Some played significant roles and others filled a key spot as a reserve or on special teams. It all helps build confidence as they continue to grow in their careers.

Now, the newness of their NFL debut has worn off. These rookies are entrenched in helping their respective teams make a playoff push.

With that said, let’s give the rookies one last dance in the spotlight. Here are the top NFL rookie performances from Week 1:

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