One already is in a corridor of fame.
One other is in mother’s possession.
The 2021 draft class of first-round talent gamers has come out firing. Every of the 5 quarterbacks and the primary three large receivers chosen have been accountable for touchdowns in Week 1. The primary working again taken, Najee Harris of the Pittsburgh Steelers, joined the TD fray in Week 2.
However what turned of the primary landing soccer of every?
They did not all assume to maintain observe of it, however that is what tools managers are for. We requested our NFL reporters to seek out out what they may about who saved the ball and what they did with it within the face of restricted participant availability this season.
The primary landing cross of New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones already resides within the workforce’s corridor of fame, which is positioned on the grounds of Gillette Stadium. It opened in September 2008 and is house to displays that seize the essence of the historical past of the workforce. So it was a pure match for Jones’ ball to finish up there, not removed from the tip zone wherein receiver Nelson Agholor scored the landing late within the second quarter.
Miami Dolphins rookie receiver Jaylen Waddle did not have to attend lengthy for his first profession reception; it got here on his first snap towards the Patriots. His first NFL landing quickly adopted, on Miami’s first drive of the third quarter. He caught a display cross from Tua Tagovailoa and powered into the tip zone for a 3-yard rating in Miami’s 17-16 win.
Waddle did not maintain the ball for lengthy although; he discovered his mom, Iesha Redmon, within the stands and gave it to her.
Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith, a teammate of Waddle at Alabama, did not know the place his ball went and did not sound too nervous. “It’s going to discover me,” he mentioned. Positive sufficient, by midweek he mentioned the ball appeared in his locker.
Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields, who scored on a 3-yard run within the third quarter of a 34-14 loss to the Los Angeles Rams, saved the ball himself. Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence mentioned his landing ball, a 22-yard cross to Chris Manhertz within the second quarter of a 37-21 loss to the Houston Texans, discovered its option to his locker courtesy of the tools workforce for the Jags.
“May give it to household. I am probably not certain, but,” mentioned Lawrence, the No. 1 total decide. “I am going to in all probability maintain on to it. It is form of particular, so maintain on to it.”
The scenario was a little bit extra distinctive for San Francisco, the place 49ers quarterback Trey Lance, the No. Three total decide, threw a 5-yard landing cross to large receiver Trent Sherfield for the sport’s first rating in what turned out to be a 41-33 victory towards the Detroit Lions.
Sherfield was taking part in in his first recreation with San Francisco after three years with the Arizona Cardinals. The cross from Lance was his first common season catch and his first landing as a Niner. Which is why Sherfield’s first intuition after the catch was to find tools supervisor Doc Dressler and have him retailer the ball for him.
But it surely did not take lengthy for Sherfield to understand he was holding a soccer that had even higher worth to another person: Lance. Sherfield had simply caught Lance’s first NFL cross and his first NFL landing cross.
“I considered it and I used to be like, ‘You understand what, I feel I want to provide that to Trey,'” Sherfield mentioned.
A energetic debate ensued, with every participant insisting the opposite take the memento house. When Lance urged that Sherfield maintain it as a result of he “acquired one from the preseason,” Sherfield put his foot down, letting Lance know “these do not rely.” Finally, Lance demurred, and as soon as the ball is painted up with the date and different pertinent data from the sport, it’ll return to Lance. Lest anybody fear, although, Sherfield made certain to get one thing out of the deal.
“One factor I did maintain was my jersey,” Sherfield mentioned. “I made it a good commerce, I gave him the ball and I saved my jersey. That is positively for him and hopefully he can get all of it painted all up and get it framed.”
Harris took an additional week to get his first landing. After posting 30 TDs in his senior 12 months at Alabama, he did not deal with his 25-yard catch-and-run rating from Ben Roethlisberger very like every other landing.
“I left it on the sphere, however they ended up giving it to me,” Harris mentioned. “It is in my locker now. I did not give it some thought. I will go away it there till I give it some thought. It is going to be there for a minute, to be trustworthy with you. Possibly I am going to go away it there. A locker-room trophy. Simply go away it in there.”
Cincinnati Bengals large receiver Ja’Marr Chase leads all rookies with 4 landing receptions. His alma mater, LSU, put collectively fairly a have a look at his first TD, which was thrown by a well-known supply, Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, Chase’s school teammate.
— LSU Soccer (@LSUfootball) September 12, 2021
What are these footballs price? That falls beneath the heading of TBD. When a sixth-round decide of the Patriots threw a landing cross on Oct. 14, 2001, towards the Chargers, nobody knew he’d nonetheless be taking part in 20 years later and maintain almost each passing document recognized to man, in addition to win seven Tremendous Bowls.
The ball from Tom Brady’s first TD pass went up for public sale at Lelands.com in Might and fetched $428,841.60.
ESPN reporters Mike Reiss, Michael DiRocco, Jeff Dickerson, Brooke Pryor, Nick Wagoner and Tim McManus contributed to this story.