Friday, September 7, 2007

The NFL Picks - Week 1

We'll just forget that yesterday's pick ever happened and move on with our lives. Although how great was it to hear John Madden say "Saskatchewan"? Never thought I'd see the day.

Denver @ Buffalo

Despite what you might think at first glance, this could actually be a pretty reasonable game to watch. There are going to be lots of players on the field with lots to prove: Marshawn Lynch, J.P Losman, Jay Cutler, Simeon Rice and Travis Henry. Buffalo wide receiver Lee Evans is always great to watch, as he's a constant threat to catch a 60-yard go route. Denver receiver Javon Walker could be poised for a monster season. Motivation is not going to be a problem for him, as friend and teammate Darrent Williams died in his arms after a drive-by shooting last New Year's Eve. Remember the Monday Night game Brett Favre had after his father passed away? I'm thinking something along those lines - only for a whole season.

Denver's defence will probably prove to be too much for the reasonably young Buffalo offence. Denver cornerbacks Dre' Bly and Champ Bailey are going to beat Buffalo QB J.P Losman like a gong.

Winner: Denver
Sport Select: Denver 1.80......Tie 3.40......Buffalo 3.05......Over/Under 37.5

Pittsburgh @ Cleveland

How many Charlie Frye interceptions will it take in this game before Browns' fans start calling for Brady Quinn? I'd say two. As a proud "Fast" Willie Parker fantasy owner I'm hoping for something along the lines of 28 carries, 157 yards, 2 touchdowns. And maybe even a couple receptions thrown in there for good measure.

I think this is the "You Can Take it to the Bank" game of the week. There is just no way that Cleveland can win this game - I just don't see it. Pittsburgh just has too much offence and too much defence. Cleveland doesn't really have much of either. And as long as Braylon Edwards, Kellen Winslow Jr. and Brady Quinn are all on the Browns I wish them nothing but ill things.

Winner: Pittsburgh
Sport Select: Pittsburgh 1.60......Tie 3.80......Cleveland 3.45......Over/Under 36.5

Carolina @ St. Louis

Yikes, I really hope I don't get this game on any of my channels on Sunday. Or I hope I have other games to choose from at the very least. I suppose if I owned St. Louis running back Stephen Jackson in a fantasy league I might want to watch. But wow, I don't see a lot of redeeming qualities in either of these teams.

I suspect that Carolina will be able to run the ball all over St. Louis. And St. Louis will be able to throw the ball all over Carolina. This game will probably come down to one or two killer mistakes from Jake Delhomme. Might we have our first David Carr sighting of the season?

Winner: St. Louis
Sport Select: Carolina 2.45......Tie 3.00......St. Louis 2.30......Over/Under 42.5

Atlanta @ Minnesota

Of course this is going to be one of the most discussed games of the weekend - simply because of the Mike Vick situation and how Atlanta is going to respond. But there are actually some football related story lines surrounding this game as well:
A) This could be when we finally find out if "Mean" Joe Harrington can actually quarterback. He finally has a good coach and a half-decent offence.
B) Is Tavaris Jackson really as bad as we all think he is? If playing against him in Madden 08 is any indication - the answer is yes.
C) Can Adrian Peterson be the battering ram we all want him to be? I say yes - of course I'm totally basing this on his one run against the Jets in the preseason.

The Vikings can probably muster just enough offence to beat the Falcons. Minnesota has the run defence to put the game all on "Mean" Joe Harrington's shoulders - and we all know how that has turned out in the past.

Winner: Minnesota
Sport Select: Atlanta 3.05......Tie 3.40......Minnesota 1.80......Over/Under 36.5

New England @ NY Jets

This game might actually be closer than I had first anticipated. New England is now missing two of their defensive stars - Rodney Harrison is suspended for 4 games for taking horse tranquilizers...oh, I mean HGH - and why didn't anyone tell me that Pro Bowl defensive end Richard Seymour is on the Physically Unable to Perform List (sounds like a Viagra commercial waiting to happen) and will miss the first 6 games of the year? New England always seem to find a way to overcome situations like this though.

I am excited to see Tom Brady play with his new toys - wide receivers Randy Moss, Donte' Stallworth and Wes Welker - even if Brady's shoulder is bothering him. And I don't think I'm going out on a limb by saying that you can probably pencil in 2-3 interceptions for Jets QB Chad Pennington right now.

Winner: New England
Sport Select: New England 1.55......Tie 3.90......NY Jets 3.60......Over/Under 41.5

Miami @ Washington

The early favorite for "Worst Game of the Week." Actually, I just looked down the schedule and Kansas City/Houston or Detroit/Oakland might be worse games. It's definitely in the bottom 3 anyway and that's never a good sign. Both of these teams have some potential but it remains to be seen if they can put it all together. If Washington's defence can be at all productive, they could be one of the surprise teams this year. And Miami should provide an easy start for the Washington D.

Winner: Washington
Sport Select: Miami 2.75......Tie 3.20......Washington 2.00......Over/Under 35.5

Tennessee @ Jacksonville

It might not be fair to say that Vince Young is a one-man team but he's as close as you're going to come these days. But the scary thing is that Young might just have the skills and physical ability to win games on his own. It is going to be great to watch him try to fend off the Jacksonville defence for 4 quarters. Never thought I'd say, "I hope I get to watch that Tennessee/Jacksonville game this weekend," but there you have it.

Unfortunately for Young and Tennessee, Jacksonville has a very, very good defence. Young might be able to make a play here and there but he'll need help if the Titans are going to beat the Jags. The unfortunate thing for Young is that he has no help.

Winner: Jacksonville
Sport Select: Tennessee 3.60......Tie 3.90......Jacksonville 1.55......Over/Under 38.5

Kansas City @ Houston

It's not a good sign when your favorite team is going into Houston and you're not 100% confident in a win. Welcome to the 2007 Kansas City Chiefs season - I know I can't wait. Larry Johnson should be broken down by about Week 10, Herm Edwards' clock management should cost the Chiefs as least 3 close games and the choices at quarterback are Damon Huard or Brodie Croyle, which is sort of like a choice between the rack or the iron maiden. On the flip side, Houston actually has a decent little team brewing down there. Now all they need is an offensive line.

While I was doing the season previews, this was a game that I had Kansas City winning. I'm less confident in that now though. But since I'm sticking with my pre-season picks, I'll have to stay with Kansas City. However, if the Chiefs don't win this game, there's a good chance they start 0-7.
Winner: Kansas City
Sport Select: Kansas City 2.75......Tie 3.20......Houston 2.00......Over/Under 38.5

Philadelphia @ Green Bay

Now this is football - the Philadelphia Eagles playing in Lambeau Field against the Green Bay Packers on a crisp autumn morning - I can almost smell the grass from here in my environmentally controlled office. I have a feeling this will be Fox's nationally televised early game and I'm already excited to watch it, even if I will have to listen to Joe Buck and the obligatory 175 story lines about Donovan McNabb's knees and Brett Favre's age for 3 hours.

Green Bay could have an underrated team this year - if Brett Favre doesn't totally kill them that is. But I think Philly has too many offensive weapons and a little too much defence for Green Bay to handle. Hopefully Donovan F. McNabb can make it through this game without getting injured.

Winner: Philadelphia
Sport Select: Philadelphia 1.80......Tie 3.40......Green Bay 3.05.....Over/Under 42.5

Detroit @ Oakland

This could be a better game than I thought it was going to be - thus giving Kansas City @ Houston the title of "Worst Game of the Week." Hooray, it's great to be a Chiefs fan. Detroit could be an exciting team, at least through the air. And Oakland has the potential to be better than people think. Although I can't believe that one of the McCown brothers is going to be a starting QB in the league again. Oakland's defence is going to sneak up on some people. Yesterday, Bill Simmons called the Oakland D "frisky" and I think that's a pretty good descriptor for them.

For some reason I originally picked Detroit to win this game - even though they're playing on the road against a better team. Clearly I have no idea what I'm talking about.

Winner: Detroit (only because I have to)
Sport Select: Detroit 2.55......Tie 3.10......Oakland 2.15......Over/Under 39.5

Chicago @ San Diego

I really, really hope this ends up being the best game of the week - which translates to, "I really, really hope Rex Grossman doesn't end up killing the Bears." I'm genuinely starting to feel bad for the guy, he just can't seem to do anything right anymore. Of course I also have Grossman in my fantasy league, so I'm hoping he does well so I can get some trade value out of him. Possible Super Bowl preview anyone?

The unfortunate reality is that Grossman probably does end up throwing 1 or 2 killer picks and we all find out the hard way that Cedric Benson is not a #1 running back. Maybe not a Super Bowl preview after all.

Winner: San Diego
Sport Select: Chicago 3.45......Tie 3.80......San Diego 1.60......Over/Under 43.5

Tampa Bay @ Seattle

Tampa head coach Jon Gruden seems to be the early season favorite to be the first NFL coach to lose his job - even though I picked NY Giant coach Tom Coughlin. This game should start Gruden's long descent from overrated to unemployed. Tampa's defence is old and was overrated 2 years before they got old. Seattle on the other hand has a little new blood on their team and seem like they're ready to do some good things this year.

Tampa has no chance in this game, repeat - no chance. They are going to get somewhere between embarrassed and eviscerated.

Winner: Seattle
Sport Select: Tampa Bay 3.60......Tie 3.90......Seattle 1.55......Over/Under 41.5

NY Giants @ Dallas

This Sunday night NFC East game already has John Madden drooling as if he were standing over a 12 pound rib roast - I'm sure of it. I always give Madden a pass on the bad announcer list for some reason - probably just because he's a legend, and clearly old and crazy. But that NBC studio might be in line for a big shake up. I like Chris Collingsworth and always have but Tiki Barber has got to go and I'm not a big fan of Bob Costas. And that "Worst Person in the NFL" thing with Keith Olberman was just strange last night.

Oh, the game - that's right. I've got Dallas going to the Super Bowl. But I also have New Orleans going to the NFC Championship. Hopefully, Dallas looks a little better on Sunday night than the Saints did last night.

Winner: Dallas
Sport Select: NY Giants 3.45......Tie 3.80......Dallas 1.60......Over/Under 44.0

Baltimore @ Cincinnati

I'm very excited for the Monday Night Football booth this year. Returning are Mike Tirico, who I think is very good and Tony Kornheiser, who had a rocky year last season - but you would too if you had to work with Joe Theismann. This year Kornheiser gets to work alongside Ron "Jaws" Jaworski and they have always had a good rappore on TV, so hopefully that translates to the MNF booth. I'm just glad I no longer have to hear Theismann try and explain how it's actually easier to throw a football when it's wet. I'll never forget that.

Oh, the game - clearly I'm wavering here, I wrote term papers that were shorter than this thing. I'm going to have to start writing next week's as soon as I'm done typing this up. If Baltimore can get even a sniff of offence they have the defence to win this game. But apparently I don't think they will, as I gave this game to Cincinnati in the season preview.

Winner: Cincinnati
Sports Select: Baltimore 2.75......Tie 3.20......Cincinnati 2.00......Over/Under 40.5

Arizona @ San Francisco

Hooray! The last game of the week. Let's just say that I hope Matt Leinart throws 3 touchdown passes. But I'm still picking San Fran to win - Frank Gore has the potential to rush for 200 yards in this game.

Winner: San Francisco
Sport Select: Arizona 2.75......Tie 3.20......San Francisco 2.00......Over/Under 45.5


Trebor said...

that did go one for while but it was all good. For the most part I see your predictions being good, though I'm going with Miami, Carolina and Baltimore for winners instead...and the last change....oakland vs. detroit a tie. Oh wait according to chris schultz(i think it was him during the rider game) "There are no ties in football" well except for the CFL which he happens to do the broadcasting for..... so why would he make that comment ????

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