1. Signing Jessie Bates
It isn't often that your top free agent of the off-season wins your first game for you if they aren't a quarterback. That was the case for Jessie Bates and the Atlanta Falcons in a memorable debut for the safety. Bates played well in coverage while picking off Bryce Young twice and punching the ball out for a fumble that would be recovered by the Falcons.
Despite the highly-paid deal that Jessie was handed this off-season, it has already paid for itself with the week one win. Jessie is a great addition to this team and a perfect fit for Jerry Gray and Ryan Nielsen.
While perhaps the offense steps up if forced into a different situation it is easy to make the argument that the Panthers win week one if not for Jessie and the forced turnovers. They took the pressure off a struggling Atlanta offense and set up the majority of Atlanta's scoring opportunities.
Bates took an expected step back in game two but remained an important contributor. Jessie will continue to have big games and moments throughout the season giving the Falcons a playmaker they have lacked in the secondary for far too long.