After a long, grueling offseason, the NFL kicked off its season opener…and what an opener it was. We witnessed the impossible, the improbable and the impartible. Yes, football season is upon us folks. That means that the guys over at ESPN are knee deep in their predictions once again. That also means that, so am I.
How did I match up against the pigskin parliamentarians last week? Was my Magic 8 Ball working as good or better than the big guys’? I bet you’ll be surprised at the results. Click the link below to find out the W/L ratios, my predictions for this coming week and the analysis of each game.
Raiders @ Bills: There are quite a few unanimous picks this week. The Bills are the first one on the list. I bit the bullet picking the Kansas City Chiefs last week. In fact, only Mike Golic and Adam Schefter picked Buffalo last week. The Chiefs looked dog awful out there but Ryan Fitzpatrick looked quite impressive. Four touchdowns and a QB Rating of 133.0 tell the tale of someone who will be the hometown hero in this Sunday’s home opener. The Raiders have yet to gel. Bills win.
Chiefs @ Lions: As previously mentioned, the Chiefs appeared, last week, as if they have not woken up from their offseason hibernation. This week will be no different. They are going into Detroit to tangle with a hungry Lions team. While we’re only one week into the season, the Lions are ranked 5th in total offense, 4th in rush defense and have the #1 ranked offensive line. The Lions are coming on strong and will maintain their momentum in their home opener. Lions win.
Ravens @ Titans: What the black birds did to the Pittsburgh Steelers last week was much like what a small child does to a colony of ants with a magnifying glass in the hot, summer sun. The Titans don’t stand a chance. Ravens all day.
Browns @ Colts: Now, the speculation here is that Indy has lost their identity without Peyton Manning at the helm. The dynamic has definitely changed a bit. Kerry Collins, who is now driving the offensive ship, is in his 17th year in the NFL. Are his best days behind him? Definitely. is he capable of beating the Browns at home? With the mentoring of Peyton, the talent that is still on that team and the expertise of the rest of the Indy organization..yes. Colts win.
Buccaneers @ Vikings: Let’s face it. The Mall Of America Field is officially cursed. Add in Donovan McNabb and you have a recipe that Chunky Soup wouldn’t feed to a dog. Tampa Bay were a decent team last year and were very effective on the road (6-2). I don’t think Minnesota will get into the swing of things until they bring in Christian Ponder as the starting QB, which is not going to happen anytime soon but WILL happen. It will be a Viking funeral this Sunday. Bucs win.
Bears @ Saints: This is one I went back and forth on quite a bit. I love the Saints at home but I love what the Bears showed last week. This is another one of those unanimous picks by the ESPN panel. I am going to go out on a limb and say they’re all wrong. The Bears manhandled the Atlanta Falcons last week. Brian Urlacher will be out on that field this week fired up with boundless emotion after the passing of his mother this past week. Ten tackles, an interception and a fumble recovery for a TD..yes…he was a beast last week and this week he’ll be unstoppable. Da Bears!
Jaguars @ Jets: I had a good feeling about the Jags last week. But that’s where it ends. The Jets are the real deal. Perhaps they’re not all that Rex Ryan makes them out to be. But when they play in sync, it is a beautiful thing to watch. Their come from behind victory last week was more than enough to discredit the naysayers. Another home game for Gang Green…Jets win.
Seahawks @ Steelers: The embarrassment that Pittsburgh is feeling over the massive flogging that the Ravens administered last week has undoubtedly left such a bad taste in their mouths that not even a shot of Art Rooney’s ketchup will get rid of it. The only solution – annihilate the Seahawks at Heinz Field this Sunday. Steelers win.
Cardinals @ Redskins: I like the direction that the Cards are heading in. They did fairly well at the Draft and seem to be crossing all their T’s and dotting those I’s. However, I see a renewed Rex Grossman on the horizon and he definitely has the targets needed to get the job done. The additions of ex-Giant Barry Cofield and their draft picks, including first rounder Ryan Kerrigan, make this Redskins team a potentially explosive unit capable of taking the NFC East. That’s right…I said it. Skins win.
Packers @ Panthers: Well, Cam Newton sure did come out and impress last week. I didn’t expect that kind of showing but it is what it is. He wasn’t drafted #1 overall for nothing back to business…the Packers picked up where they left off from last year’s Super Bowl. Aaron Rodgers looked phenomenal. This is going to be a high flying, aerial game and is simply a must see. Cam was sacked 4 times last week. This week he will find out what the turf on his home field tastes like. Packers win…cheese for everyone! YAY!
Cowboys @ 49ers: Despite a loss last Sunday night, Dallas showed themselves as a true contender in the NFC East. Granted, they don’t get the glory that they once received. You don’t hear any analysts praising them as the next recipients of the Lombardi Trophy. Thankfully. If Romo can stay healthy and protected by that offensive line they just might cause many a team a migraine or two. Cowboys win.
Bengals @ Broncos: I was all by my lonesome in picking the Bengals last week…and it paid off! While I am not expecting much out of the Bengals this year, I am expecting even less from the Broncos. This will be one of the few W’s in their column this year. Bengals win.
Texans @ Dolphins: Well, I am not alone in picking the fish. But I am certainly in the minority. It is very difficult to pick against Chad Henne right now, especially after what he did last week against the New England Patriots. This week, he’ll be going up against a team that is not even in the same vicinity as the Pats. They will also have home field advantage. Yeah…Dolphins win. No question.
Chargers @ Patriots: The #1 offense and offensive line of the Patriots square up against the #1 defense in the NFL, the Chargers. OK, it’s too early to get hopped up on the stats yet. So I will just say this…Tom Brady, 517 passing yards and 4 TD’s. Any questions? Pats win.
Eagles @ Falcons: I think it is safe to say that the Falcons are a title peeved about their loss last week. It wasn’t exactly close. To make matters worse, Michael Vick that…(enter comment here)…will be making his return to Georgia Dome and I think it is safe to say that he will not be getting the warmest of greetings. These are two very good teams but only one will emerge victorious. That team will have the 12th man come Sunday. Falcons win.
Rams @ Giants: Finally, we arrive at the Big Blue Wrecking Crew. Even though the Gmen are unanimously favored, I think it would be a mistake for anyone to underestimate the Rams. Sam Bradford is developing into one of the future elite QB’s in this league. However, he’s not there YET. The Giants have a few players banged up at the moment but will be hosting the game. When the smoke clears, the Giants will have earned their first win of the season. Giants win.
That’s me. What do you have?
Tags: Aaron Rodgers Cam Newton Chicago Bears Dallas Cowboys Donovan McNabb ESPN Giants, New York Giants, Popular, Featured, Justin Tuck Green Bay Packers Kerry Collins Minnesota Vikings National Football League New England Patriots New Orleans Saints New York Giants New York Jets NFC East NFL NYG Peyton Manning Philadelphia Eagles Rex Ryan Ryan Kerrigan Sam Bradford Sean Kerr Super Bowl Tom Brady Washington Redskins