Sunday, September 22, 2013

NFL Picks 2013: Week 3

Eagles over the Chiefs
-Got this one wrong. I know Vick is vulnerable physically when he runs but I actually thought he should have run more Thursday night. The strong armed QB can throw a beautiful ball but more often than not he just doesn't have an accurate touch. On the other side, Alex Smith is what everyone says he is: a game manager. You can win games that way and occasionally if your defense is great enough you can even win a Super Bowl (Trent Dilfer). I don't think that the Chiefs are heading that way but after having only one winning season in the last five years.  9-7, 10-6, or even 8-8 will probably feel pretty good.

Packers over the Bengals
This will be a tough one. The Bengals are a good team and I"m still not sure how good the Packer defense is.

Cowboys over the Rams
The Rams should find a way to get the ball to Tavon Austin. Watch his college Youtube highlights. Give him a little space and he's ridiculous. Unfortunately for the Rams, Dallas has their own freak in Dez Bryant.

Titans over the Chargers
If the Titans can put pressure on Rivers, he and the Chargers are toast. Rivers moves like his feet are in cement.

Vikings over the Browns
A tanking Browns team is just what the doctored ordered for Minnesota. The Vikings struggle to pass and this year they'll struggle to run it. That's relative of course, they're used to Peterson running wild but there's no way he's getting 2,000 yards this year. In fact he may not get to 1500 yards. He's still the best back in the game, but as teams continue to stack the box yards will be tough to come by unless Ponder can make plays in the passing game.

Patriots over the Bucs
I'm interested to see if Revis and the Bucs secondary can limit Brady's passing. His own receivers have been doing a pretty good job of that lately.

Saints over the Cardinals. 
Brees is at times a little too greedy down field but it's hard to argue with his decision making when he just keeps moving that Saints offense with precision.

Redskins over the Lions
The pass rush of Detroit will force Griffin outside of the pocket and he'll do some damage that way.

Giants over the Panthers
Inconsistency meets it's match.

Texans over the Ravens
I'm just not sure Flacco has enough weapons anymore.

Falcons over the Dolphins
Miami is tougher than I thought. That should keep the game interesting.

Bills over the Jets
Wouldn't it be cool if E.J. Manuel turns out to be good. We actually won't know that for a bit though. I mean remember when we thought Mark Sanchez was a good QB?

49ers over the Colts
The Richardson deal is the story of the season so far but the excitement in Indy will fade quickly if it turns out Cleveland let him go for a reason.

Seahawks over the Jags
Who would have thunk it? The Seahawks elite. It's early but they sure look like a top 3 team in the league.

Bears over the Steelers
I'm wanting my Pittsburgh Super Bowl pick back now. The Steelers look terrible and old.

Manning (I mean the Broncos) over the Raiders
Keeping Manning upright will be a challenge without Clady protecting his blindside. If I was Oakland I'd send the kitchen sink.

Friday, September 06, 2013

NFL 2013 Picks: Week 1

Broncos over the Ravens
I didn't see 7 touchdowns, but I did think Manning might come out strong. 

Patriots over the Bills
Please. It's over already.

Bengals over the Bears
Intriguing game. The Bears have talent, as do the Bengals. Can either offense be consistent against a good defense? This may be low scoring.

Browns over the Dolphins
When the only reason to tune in at all is because you have a fantasy player (Trent Richardson for me)-- you know you've been bad for awhile. Congrats Cleveland and Miami,  I'm nominating you for least interesting game of the week. 

Saints over the Falcons
Maybe the most interesting game here. Rivals, Old king of the hood against new king of the hood. 

Bucs over the Jets
Almost mirrors the Cleveland game in interest, except the Bucs have some players that might be fun to watch --or at least see if they will finally emerge (ehem..Josh Fremman).  Doug Martin and Revis are worth keeping an eye on in this one. 

Steelers over the Titans
It seems like the Steelers have hung around for a few years without really getting bad or great. It's time to make a decision here guys. I think they'll be good and challenge for the Super Bowl but a precipitous decline wouldn't surprise me either. 

Lions over the Vikings
I'm excited to see what Reggie Bush can do with the Lions. He won't rival number 28 on the purple side,... but then who can? Peterson wants not just 2,000 yards this year but 2,500 yards.  He's the best but I don't think another 2K is in the cards this season. 

Colts over the Raiders
Luck will be in a shorter passing scheme this year. How will that look?  Probably boring but maybe that will be better for him in terms of cutting down interceptions. His Stanford days were efficient in a similar system but I thought it was a snoozefest at times. If they want the power running game to fly can they do it with their two unknown and unproven running back?  I'm doubtful. 

Seahawks over the Panthers
I predict some read option here. Mind blowing the powers I can marshall at times --isn't it?

Chiefs over the Jags
Alex Smith will check down a few times but Andy Reid should be good for him. The guy was pretty damn good last year before he lost the job to Kapernick. Anything's better than what has been passing for QB in K.C. 

Rams over the Cardinals
Tavon Austin ....please breath life into Sam Bradford for the sake of an old Ram fan-- who often forgets he was a Ram fan.  It may be difficult but I've watched your highlights and I believe. Or at least I want to. 

49ers over the Packers
This game on paper looks awesome. 

Giants over the Cowboys
Traditional rivalries. I like this for an opening salvo. The Cowboys may surprise us and Jerry Jones will certainly continue to creep us out. Good times. 

Redskins over the Eagles
This game is in my top 3 most anticipated of the week. RGIII against a Chip Kelly offense led by Vick. Bring it on!

Texans over the Chargers
I'm most interested to see if J.J. Watt can continue to dominate. 

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

NFL 2013 Predictions

Attempting to forecast the NFL is a bit like trying to predict the behavior of Miley Crus. In short it can be ugly and crazy. By the way, I found it interesting that sports fans and Miley share a love for the iconic # 1 foam fingers. Different uses...but still.  Anyway, the NFL never fails to surprise as I'm sure there will be both teams that step up and those that disappoint this year. However, I do think that barring injury to their QBs there a few teams that are near locks to make the playoffs.
  •  Aaron Rodger's Packers have only failed to make the playoffs once with him at the helm (his first year starting). Maybe they're due for a down year, but I doubt it. 
  • The Pats with the golden boy are in again by a mile. Tom Brady is more responsible for the last decade of Patriot success than Bill Belichick. I'm not saying Belichick wouldn't have won in New England but I feel fairly confident in saying that he wouldn't still be there today without the Hall of Famer at QB.  He doesn't have the personality to weather the lean years. A couple of down years (a certainty with a mediocre QB) and the combination of surliness and non-cooperative attitude would have gotten him fired for sure. 

Here's who I'm picking for Division winners.

AFC East: Patriots...they play with the Bills, Dolphins, & Jets.(sigh). Next to the fact that the Patriots are a very well run organization (from owner to probably the janitors), you can't underestimate the significance of playing against cupcakes in your division for a decade. Think about that. How would it be to totally discount your entire division year in and year out when you evaluate potential obstacles for a Super Bowl run. It's probably the most overlooked aspect of Patriot success during the Belichick era. 

AFC North: Bengals. Maybe too trendy here. The Steelers and Ravens are sure to contend too. Andy Dalton has to progress this year for it to happen but he's got a receiver in A.J. Green that rivals Calvin Johnson in talent. And I really liked the Cincy defense last year. They more than anything carried the team down the stretch and into the playoffs. 

AFC South: Colts. I want to say the Texans but the potential of Andrew Luck is tantalizing.

AFC West: Broncos. Maning, if healthy is the difference between the Broncos making the playoffs or not. His 2012 season, especially after sitting a year, is in my opinion one of the most incredible QB seasons of all time. And that's saying something considering what we're seeing at the position now.

NFC East: Giants. What crap shoot. This division has the potential to be the best in the league. A Chip Kelly Eagle offense is something that is a must see for me early in the season. The Redskin's Griffin III could be both better and worse at the same time if he limits his running. Dallas is always hanging around (for better or worse). But overall NY seems to me like they may get back on top this year. 

NFC North: Packers. Detroit, Chicago & Minnesota have potential to win this thing but I see more question marks in terms of inconsistency with all of them compared to Green Bay.

NFC South: Saints. Rebound year. I may be crazy since the Falcons are on paper the better team (and by better team I mean they actually have a defense). But who knows, maybe Sean Payton really is that valuable. 

NFC West: 49ers. Should be a battle between the 49ers and Hawks. Too bad Harbough and Caroll can't engage in single combat for division supremacy ......(for you Game of Thrones nerds). 

Super Bowl: I would have never picked the Ravens last year so I figure my pick is as good or bad as anyone else's pick (please don't tell me you saw Joe Flacco's 2012 brillance in the playoff coming....I won't believe you if you do). I would love to see the Rams seriously compete (doubtful with the brutal division they are in) and I wouldn't mind seeing the Broncos, Colts, Saints or Packers win it all, but I'll say it will be a battle of wildcards, the Seahawks over the Steelers.