Week one didn’t go bad, but it didn’t go all that well either. I went a less than impressive (2-3-1), while By kept it mediocre with a 2-2 start. Now that we’ve seen a whole week of football action, we are experts and shouldn’t miss another pick for the rest of the year, right!?! I’m still shocked that By called that Texans game. I actually could see the Colts winning the next nine games without anyone noticing. I don’t buy TMQ’s argument that this is Armageddon because the Texans won, but do agree it would be hilarious if Houston ended up playing in the Super Bowl in Jerry Jones billion dollar stadium. Anyways, this should be another fun week, and I’m excited to win the money back that I lost in week one, so here are our picks for week 2!
What a roller coaster opening week for me. I hit the ground running like a Chris Johnson breakaway, after my prediction of the Texans upsetting the Colts came true. I began imagining myself hoisting up the “I Told You So” trophy after that one. Unfortunately that image shattered immediately, as the Houston/Indy game didn’t equate to the biggest upset of the day. The biggest upset of the day went to me. Because I was so damn upset at my 49ers! What a waste of one and a half hours of a beautiful Sunday afternoon. As you can guess, I stopped watching midway through. Anyway, to brighten up my mediocre week, let me just say, “How about ‘dem Cowboys, huh!?” I wanted to stay away from the Jets/Ravens game, but ultimately couldn’t resist. I originally wanted to take KC over SD, but couldn’t pull the trigger on another significant upset. Lesson learned, always go with the gut. But like Chappy said, we learned everything I needed to know about all the teams after the first week, and ala Vernon Davis, I predict we win on all of our picks the rest of the way!
@ Dallas (-8.5) Chicago
Chappy: Chicago +8.5 Not sure how you could make Dallas an 8 point favorite over anyone after that performance against a Washington team that nobody likes to win many games this year. Maybe a lot of Dallas fans are driving up the line on this one betting on their team. The Cowboys were also terrible all preseason, and even made my Raiders look good in one game. They might be one of the most over rated teams in the league. Chicago might have some problems against this solid Dallas D, but last week was the rebirth of Matt Forte gaining 201 all purpose yards and a TD. The Chicago offense actually looked pretty good under Mike Martz, and maybe Forte will be his Marshall Faulk. These division games are usually close, so I’ll take the Bears not losing by a touchdown. Plus if the Cowboys have to rely on Romo late, we know they aren’t going to win!
@ Cleveland (- 2.5) Kansas City
By: KC (+ 2.5) Is this a joke? Is this what people call a “trap game?” Let’s review this shall we? So Cleveland lost their opener to woeful Tampa, yeah? And Kansas City defeated perennial AFC West favorites San Diego on Monday Night Football, right? So who are we going with here people!? Granted KC had not one, but two game changing plays that ultimately proved the difference, and a ruckus crowd that had the same say in the final outcome as the team itself, the math is simple. Kansas City beat a Super Bowl contender, and Cleveland lost to a Division II school, why is Cleveland favored? Is it because they’ll be playing in front of the mighty “Dog Pound?” Is it because they start former Super Bowl participant Jake “The Fake” Delhomme? What am I missing here!? With that said, I missed out on an opportunity to go with the Chiefs last week, I won’t repeat my mistake. Chiefs by 10.
Chappy: Baltimore (-1.5) The Ravens didn’t get much going with their offense against the Jets on MNF, and have a short week to get ready for this match up. I’m a big Harbaugh fan, maybe it was that stint as Stanford’s head coach, but I feel like he has a solid direction for this team, and they have the weapons to get it done if Flacco can find them. One thing that was very impressive in their first game was how many third and longs’ they converted on the self proclaimed best D in the league. The Bengals on the other hand, looked lost at times when they played the Patriots. Their offense put up points, but the Pats D isn’t anywhere near as good as the Ravens D. If Cincy pulls out a win, maybe I’ll buy what they were selling on all those diva reality shows over off season. As of right now, I don’t see Cincy as a playoff team, and won’t beat the Ravens even if the game is at home. No cardiac cats this year…
@ Green Bay (-13) Buffalo
Chappy: Green Bay (-13) I think this line could be -20, and I’d still take it. The Bills hung tough at home against Miami, but the Packers are a much different animal to contain especially in Lambeau. Everyone is putting them in the Super Bowl, and to show they are really a contender they need blowouts in games like this. I know that Green Bay just lost Ryan Grant, but he wasn’t all that great to begin with. He was just valuable, because he was on a good team. You could plug any RB into that backfield, and have them succeed with defenses worried about the many receiving weapons they have. Trent Edwards will turn the ball over a couple times in this one, and the Pack will be up by 14 at the half.
Philadelphia (-3) @ Detroit
By: Phi (- 3) I really, really wanted Detroit to have a feel-good season. After an insurmountable amount of time spent suffering, the Lions fans would finally have a team that they could be proud of. The Matt Millen stench would be removed, and all would be fine along the 8-Mile Road. Alas, one separated throwing shoulder later, and the immediate future of the Lions season rest on the hands of Shaun Hill. As a 49ers fan I can tell you this Detroit, look forward to next season. Meanwhile, in Philadelphia, there’s a bit of a dilemma at QB. All indications were made already, if Kolb can go, he starts, but he’s one bad outing away from creating a musical chairs scenario at QB in the city of Brotherly Love. Luckily for me, it doesn’t matter who starts at QB for Philly, because Shaun Hill is definitely starting for the team across the sidelines. It goes back to my, it’s not what I like about you, but what I don’t like about you technique of picking teams. I don’t like Shaun Hill. Eagles by 13.
@ Tennessee (-5.5) Pittsburgh
Chappy: Pittsburgh (+5.5) Even without Big Ben, the Steelers pulled out an ugly victory over the Falcons, who was a team I think, and still think will be in the playoffs. Pittsburgh always seems to play close games, and even though this isn’t the same rivalry as when they were in the same division, it does make it mean a little more to both teams. Fun fact about the Steelers, is that they are 21-9 with Polamalu in the lineup and just 5-7 without him playing. Guess what, he’s playing this weekend. The Titans looked great against the Raiders, and even though I thought the Raiders were going to be good, it doesn’t always make it so. They are still coming off their sixth straight losing season, so maybe my expectations were unfounded. I’ll be much more impressive if the Titans can beat this Steelers squad. I doubt Polamalu will be blowing coverage like the Raiders did with Nate Washington last week. Take the points in this one, it should be close.
By: Oakland (- 3.5) By all accounts, the Raiders were supposed to lose that game at Tennessee. The Titans are a legit contender, and is Chris Johnson not the best back in the NFL right now? With that said, if you take away his long 76 yard TD run, he was held to 66 yards on 26 carries. That’s a damn good job Oakland. The Raiders will most likely focus on taking away St. Louis’ ground game this week. Steven Jackson is no slouch, but then again, he’s no Chris Johnson. I have reason to believe the Raiders can manage. That means the onus is on Sam Bradford and his arm to win it, but after throwing 55 times in his NFL debut, I’m not sure his arm was still attached on Monday. Plus, when he looks into the Oakland secondary and spots a big 2-1, it automatically limits his options. Quite simply put, St. Louis doesn’t have many options, and Oakland’s a better team than suspected. If McFadden can turn in a game similar to his last, but in front of the Raider Nation, Oakland wins easily.
New England (-1.5) @ New York Jets
By: NE (-1.5) My how quick I’ve jumped the wagon. I bailed ship! The Jets defense is as good as advertised, they are amongst the top, but they’re not perfect. There are holes in the secondary, primarily with Antonio Cromartie and Kyle Wilson. It’s Wilson’s first year in the NFL, so we’ll cut him slack, he shows tremendous promise, but Cromartie? No excuses. He was exposed by Joe Flacco and company, just think what Tom Bieber, I mean Brady will do to him. And that’s not even New York’s main issue. I’ve been a huge Mark Sanchez critic, but I must admit, some of the problems on offense stems from the coaching staff. They need to either turn Sanchez loose, or consider experimenting with a Wildcat set, because whatever offense they’re running with, sucks. Shonn Greene didn’t look like the stud we all thought he’d be either, can we say LT? Meanwhile, New England looks like they’ve recaptured their Championship form despite their Moss problems, and when the Pats are dialed in, look out. What it comes down to is this, it’s not that the Jets don’t have enough fire power to hang with the Pats, but they don’t have any. New England 10, New York 6. Jets D does a great job in a losing effort.
Chappy: New England (-1.5) Uh oh, last time we both picked a game it was the SF one, and we both were terribly wrong. This is going to be a statement game for the division. Going all the way back to when Mortenson was going camp to camp on his bus, and players were writing stuff on that bus, the Jets proclaimed themselves Super Bowl champs, while the Patriots stuck to their moto of one game at a time. The Jets have no real track record of success, so I was never clear why everyone thought they were automatically heading to the Super Bowl. The Patriots are that sleeping giant that has its issues with Randy Moss, but one bad cog doesn’t slow this machine down. Especially since Moss is in a contract year. Remember the last time he was in a contract year? He only caught 23 TD’s. I loved that he called out Revis, but am not sure he can beat him in this one on one matchup. As long as they have Brady spreading out the field they will be okay. I see them putting up more points than Baltimore did, and Welker will beat Chromartie for his usual 7-10 catch game. What’s become clear to me though is that we shouldn’t be calling Mark Sanchez “the Sanchize” anymore. I’m going to start calling him the Sancheckdown until we see him actually wait out patterns long enough to throw it deep.
By: Hou (- 3) If Arian Foster continues to provide Matt Schaub, Andre Johnson, and the Houston Texans offense a reliable running game, watch out league! We all know how deadly Houston’s passing attack can be, and although it was the Foster Show last week, look for their air attack to return to the spotlight this week at Washington. The Redskins will be reviewing footage from the Hou/Indy game, and will not let Foster run amuck on them, which is great for me because Shaub is my starting Fantasy QB. The Redskins didn’t look particularly good on offense in the opener, in fact DeAngelo Hall scored their only TD of the game on a strip, fumble recovery, and return. I guess you can say the Redskins D looked like “World Beaters”, but when the “World” you refer to is Tony Chokemo and the Dallas Chokeboys, I have reason to remain skeptic. Let’s see how the Redskins do when the real team from Texas visits D.C. Also, considering the fact that the AFC South might very well be the toughest division in football right now, the Texans need to keep that 1-up they have on Indy. I don’t expect a let down from them. Texans win big.
New Orleans (-5.5) @ San Francisco
Chappy: New Orleans (-5.5) Sorry By, I had to pick the Saints here, it almost feels like my lock of the week. The Saints looked impressive at times against a great Vikings defense. Going against a 49ers defense that gave up 31 points to a strangely successful Seahawks team, I can only imagine how many points they will score in this one, 40, 50? With an extra couple of days to prepare, this one looks over before it starts. I wonder if Singletary will thank the Saints for this ass kicking too!?! I see Alex Smith forcing the ball way too much trying to keep up with the high scoring Saints, and turning it over in career high fashion. Hopefully the 49ers will right the ship in week 3.