By: Ryan Wooley
The first week of NFL action is in the books and we saw everything from a rookie quarterback leading his team to a victory on the road, the first overtime game, a couple of blow outs and a few last minute drives to pick up the win.
Overall I was happy with my picks after posting a 9-6 record as a couple could have went either way like the Cardinals/Seahawks game or even the Panthers/Buccaneers, but it is what it is and I’ll take the +3 margin going into this week.
As always, feel free to follow me on Twitter @WooleyMammoth85 and let me know if my picks have helped or hurt you in your survival pools or with your local bookie.
Week two NFL Action: (Minus Packers/Bears who played on Thursday Night)
Chiefs @ Bills: Even though both teams dropped their season opener, Buffalo still looks like the more complete team over Kansas City. Yes, the Bills lost Fred Jackson to injury but C.J. Spiller stepped in and filled the void quite nicely, plus Ryan Fitzpatrick still tossed three touchdowns to go along with his three interceptions. I give the edge to Buffalo.
Bengals vs. Browns: For as bad as Cleveland played against Philly last week, they still had a chance to win the game if they could have just held onto what would have been Michael Vick’s 5th interception. Instead, they dropped it and Vick and Philly escaped with the victory. The Bengals meanwhile looked completely out of sync on Monday night against Baltimore, but then again, they were playing the Ravens. Between the two, Cincinnati is the better team and I say the Bengals take it.
Vikings @ Colts: I had a gut feeling that Minnesota would pull it out over Jacksonville and I was right on that. I was also right that Andrew Luck would struggle a bit in his pro debut on the road in Chicago. This game however has breakout game written all over it for both teams. Adrian Peterson could easily run all over Indy’s defense while Luck could destroy Minnesota’s secondary. I say it comes down to the wire and it is Andrew Luck and the Colts standing tall in the end.
Dolphins vs. Raiders: Miami was just annihilated by Houston last week while it took Oakland three and a half quarters to finally find the end zone. I don’t see the same problem for the Raiders this week, but I do for the Dolphins. Oakland rolls in this game.
Cardinals @ Patriots: If you’re an Arizona fan, I would imagine you do not have any hair left after constantly pulling it out because your starting quarterbacks can’t stay healthy. Kevin Kolb was forced to come in after John Skelton sprained his ankle and has been name the starter for this week, but truthfully it doesn’t matter who starts at quarterback as Arizona doesn’t stand a chance in this one. New England wins by double digits.
Giants vs. Buccaneers: After dropping their opening game to the Cowboys on Wednesday night the Giants are looking to get back on track while Tampa Bay is riding high after defeating Carolina in week one. Both teams have their strengths, but I see this one coming down to Eli and company rallying late for a game winning field goal. Giants win.
Ravens @ Eagles: Had Philadelphia played the way they played in the final four games of the season last year, I would say they would stand a chance in this game. But with the Ravens up tempo offense, Philly’s issues with stopping the run and Michael Vick still trying to shrug off the rust, Baltimore should have no problem winning this game.
Panthers vs. Saints: Did anyone think that New Orleans would actually lose to a rookie quarterback at home when the Saints played the Redskins? If you say you did, I have a hard time believing you. But believe me when I say this, New Orleans will not lose two straight to start the season and Drew Brees will have no less than four touchdowns in this game.
Texans @ Jaguars: If Houston has their sights set on representing the AFC in the Super Bowl this year, they have to make sure Andre Johnson and Arian Foster remain healthy. There are very few teams in the league that can stop the Texans when their dynamic duo is healthy and Jacksonville is at the bottom of that list. Texans win.
Rams vs. Redskins: For as bad as St. Louis played against Detroit, they still had a chance to win in the end and even had the lead with two minutes to go. However, they picked off Matthew Stafford three times and only managed seven points off those turnovers because it was a pick six. Good teams take advantage of that and St. Louis is not a good team. Washington on the other hand proved they could be a force to mess with this season. Redskins win and start 2-0.
Cowboys @ Seahawks: Tony Romo looked to be in midseason form when Dallas knocked off New York in the season opener while Seattle just missed defeating the Cardinals as Braylon Edwards couldn’t catch a pass that hit him in the hands on fourth down—(Shocker I know). Both teams should match up pretty well but the edge has to be given to the Cowboys and their defense as they will blitz the hell out of Russell Wilson. Dallas takes this one.
Steelers vs. Jets: For an offense that struggled all preseason long, the Jets were firing on all cylinders after Mark Sanchez put up three touchdowns and 48 points against Buffalo. Pittsburgh meanwhile was in a shootout with Denver until Big Ben tossed an interception that was returned for six. Pittsburgh’s defense will step up in this game and not only shut down Sanchez, but make him look bad enough that the Tebow chants return when the Jets go back home.
Titans @ Chargers: Jake Locker wasn’t too bad in his NFL debut, throwing for 229 yards, a touchdown and an interception, but the Titans still fell to the Patriots. Phillip Rivers and the Chargers meanwhile looked good in their win against the Raiders, but the defense allowed Oakland to get back into the game late in the fourth. I think this comes down to the running game and Tennessee still has the edge with Chris Johnson. Titans win.
Falcons vs. Broncos: I wondered how Peyton Manning would respond after taking his first real sack of the NFL season and he looked good and picked up a victory in his first game back. Atlanta meanwhile rolled Kansas City as Matt Ryan tossed three touchdowns, but I don’t think Kansas City will be very good this season and those numbers look better than they really are. I think Peyton has another stellar performance and Denver takes this one.
Lions @ 49ers: Well, here it is. The rematch of “handshake gate” and the first and only real test for Detroit in their first four games. The Lions are coming off a last second win over the Rams at home while the 49ers went on the road and punched the Green Bay Packers in the mouth. I think this will come down to the whether or not the Lions can do something they couldn’t do all last season, which is stop the run. It will also come down to how the Lions defensive line is with putting pressure on Alex Smith. I don’t see either of those things happening, but it won’t be a blowout. I say 49ers by four, 31-27.