The season is already a quarter over….good God….and I thought the SUMMER went fast….we’re already seeing Halloween and Christmas-whoring in retail stores, the NHL season is here (and hey Sanborn….the Leafs already have as many wins as the Bills do!) but there’s always the football Sunday….and more meaningless Thursday Night games, even though this one is an anti-football Hall of Fame-level experience….Eli Manning orders a Matt Schaub pick-6 burger and watches as it gets intercepted on the way to his plate….good times for all indeed...and look, the Steelers can’t lose this week, whooo!!! (and amazingly Schiano didn’t get tarred, featherd and executed this week)….also off are the Redskins and Vikings, driving me to the bar for my money league team…oi…..
Oh ….before I start I have a story from today….I was listening to Sirus/XM and the NFL channel as I always do…and this guy calls up…all fired up about the Titans, their defense and how the season is going….he’s saying that he sees a deep playoff run if they can only hurry and get Locker back…the host thumbs his nose up at this… “Locker’s a care taker….he can’t play on a high level…and you NEED a high level QB….you go ahead and name ME the team that won a Super Bowl without outstanding QB play….go ahead….I’m waiting….” The guy without pause…no blink….no hesitation…BAM “Joe Flacco” (you know the guy who won the LAST one…)…the host then gets annoyed and goes “well we don’t know about HIM yet….” But yeah….he was pretty ticked by that…and I had to share it….
Thursday Oct 3:
Bills at Browns:
So Brandon Weedon gets hurt, Brian Hoyer walks in and out of nowhere this team starts to look like the team we were advertised to see in the pre-season (well minus Trent Richardson, but that 1st round pick will look sweet later)…..getting Flash Gordon back at receiver didn’t hurt too….the front seven is playing good….and the Bills are just….weird ….2-0 in the non-AFC games this season…..I don’t really have a lot of time for shtick here…but I’ll try to stick some in there when it matters….CJ Spiller looks to be out (correct that….he’s playing….good thing about doing this 5 minutes before kickoff ) tonight, Fred Jackson is in….the Browns front 7 is good on the run and I don’t think the Bills have enough weapons to spread them out and make room for the running game…and the Browns are doing just enough with the run to make Gordon and Cameron dangerous….it’s a shame the Bills don’t have the weapons to take advantage of the Browns weak spots….…my God the last time the Browns were over .500 this late in the season?? 2001….egads….guess that’s due to change….finally….
Game Quality: *** (the Sanborn meltdown should be awesome since he already abandoned the Sabres….)
Sunday Oct 6:
Patriots at Bengals:
This is an important game for the Bengals in many ways….they never beat a team on an equal or greater level then they are…. Andy Dalton is hearing the rumblings (not on an Eli or Schaub-level, but it is more then your standard “ugly ginger” jokes…)….and for God’s sake they LOST TO CLEVELAND…oi….and in come the Patriots…the gold standard….the consistency measuring stick….Brady’s gone from whining at his receivers to giving them happy endings after TD passes and this team is starting to look like the Pats of old….this is all bad news for the Bengals…however….IF this alleged good defense of theirs can get pressure through the front 4…..they might be alright….but this is Cincinnati….I fell for it a month ago….I ain’t falling for it now….
Game Quality: ** ¾ (its an intriguing game)
Lions at Green Bay:
Boy the games this week are pretty damn good….and some “gotta have” games for the lower record teams….this is one of those….HOWEVER….the Lions haven’t won in Green Bay like since before the Favre days (its been a while regardless)….the Lions are 3-0 when Reggie Bush plays though and he’s totally changed how you defend their passing game….the Packers are still a mess….only 4 teams defend the pass worse per game…and they don’t get turnovers…and as always ….only Clay Matthews gets to the QB…the offense is a leaky line, A-Rod running for his life…and jobber running backs….Eddie Lacy is healthy (I hope) and ready for Sunday….the Lions already got the “we don’t win in Washington” monkey off their back…..maybe they’re due for one here too….the Packers have as many holes as those damn cheese heads they sell….I’m not in love with the Lions still….but I like them here….
Game Quality: ***
Seattle at Colts:
Damn this is one of those AFC/NFC games you salivate for….the juggernaut Seattle team and that monster defense going against the Andrew Luck machine and his deep receiver core…. Trent Richardson is SLOWLY coming along (bad sign when your RB is slow on the uptake….)….and the defense has a nasty side that NO ONE saw coming in the pre-season….this team might be as complete as the team coming in the building…and no team has snatched victory from the jaws of defeat (and gave Matt Schaub a burger made in his honor)….and it’s so hard for me to pick against Seattle…but they’re not going 16-0 this year….and this is certainly a loseable game for them….I do expect an epic battle here as titans do truly collide here…..
Game Quality: ***** (LOVE this game!)
Saints at Bears:
Another one of those awesome must-see games (and not that crap the pathetic Miz talks about)….the Saints are just rolling….offense, turnovers….good enough defense…they got everything going but a running game…meanwhile…people are saying “well we saw the REAL Jay Cutler last week….” ….I’m not so sure about that….and three good games is enough to allow one stinker….his o-line also got dominated by the Lions too…least Cutler kept his pouting to himself….the Saints have won 3 of their 4 games at home this season…the 4th was lowly Tampa…the thunderstorm put up a better fight there….and the Bears need this one a little bit more to make last week look like a blip on the radar…and keep pace with said Lions….also this Alien in the Stomach defense of Rob Ryan’s has yet to see an offense CLOSE to what the Bears throw out there too….so that’s a real test….if this was in New Orleans, I’d have picked the Saints easily….
Game Quality: **** (yar, there be offense!)
Eagles at Giants:
….the pathetic part here….the winner will be knocking at the door for first place….the Eagles have looked pretty pathetic and exhausted when not playing games inside the NFC East…least they’re back in the division now…..no one chucks it and chucks it deep like the Chip Kelly offense (time of possession is overrated….kinda like this Spaceball one has gone PLAID offense….heh)…and the mess in the Meadowlands is well documented…though seems they’re not testing for recreational drugs as talk on the defense is making the jump from 0-4….to 12-4 (yeah…right…let me sell you a room with a view on the moon while you’re at it…)….Well Eli has been E-L-INT all season long (and according to pro football mock.com fighting an addiction to turnovers that is NOT food-related), he’s been damned efficient vs the Eagles (something like 12 TD and 2 int in the last 4 Eagles games)….and I’m starting him in NJDevs this week…well Griffin is out anyway….neither one of these teams are all that wonderful, and the Giants winning does muddy the awful NFC East even more…I’ll be root for the Eagles like I started Vick this week…but I know better….gimmick offenses don’t work when the grown-ups have time to figure it out and see past the lame gimmick…..
Game Quality: warp speed anti-football!!!
Jaguars at St Louis:
This game should have a stipulation….the first team to actually run for greater than 10 yards or for an actual first down with yardage greater than 3 should just be awarded the victory here and the fine people of St Louis should be spared the atrocity of watching football from PARTS UNKNOWN….and this is a mercy game on the schedule for the Rams…they’ve been awful….no one’s catching passes for Bradford….the offense needs 6 downs and a penalty to make it 2nd and 5 yards to go if they run handoffs, the defense is tough but always on the field because the offense has been just awful…..the Jaguars are a special magical kinda team that make everything better….and are too busy scouting draft lists for next year to even bother with this damn football thing right now….and it could be a LOT worse then 2-3 for the Rams at this point too….
Game Quality: This is a special kinda anti-football J
Chiefs at Titans:
Oh boy…this is gonna be a slobberknocker (and I’m not even being sarcastic…), both of these teams play balanced and efficient football….don’t turn the ball over and get it back pretty easily…in fact if Jake Locker was healthy this would be two teams looking into a mirror waving arms at each other to see if the other blinks….but it’s not…it’s Ryan Fitzpatrick….and I’ve seen him enough in Buffalo to know he is affected by a case of Eli Schaub-itis….and that’s enough to shift the tide on these opportunistic Chiefs…..
Game Quality: **** (this should be PHYSICAL though)
Baltimore at Miami:
Both teams lost last week….and it was kinda ugly for both….Joe Flacco was throwing interceptions like they were on sale last week, and Miami just couldn’t keep up with the Saints in their own building….the defense should look better this week since it’s easier to stop a pop-gun then an M-60 with a box full of ammo…the Ravens lost twice on the road this year and they really can’t make defenses scare their offense….the Dolphins have Wallace deep, Hartline in between and just enough running to keep it honest…while the Ravens seem to be swimming backwards on offense…and didn’t pay Ray Lewis his $3 million a game bribe….which means the team won’t come to play….I like Miami a LOT at home in this one….
Game Quality: ***
Carolina at Arizona:
The Cardinals lead for like 35 seconds against a Mike Glennon-lead Bucs offense…and now they come home for a rested and motivated Carolina team that got over the hump beating up the Giants and sees three VERY winnable games on the schedule (Minnesota and Tampa are next)….win those games and all of a sudden things look good for them…the Cardinals got shut down pretty easy by Tampa and the Panther defense is better (especially up front) then Tampa is….I’d say better coached, but that’s obvious when comparing teams to Schiano….and Arizona’s not good enough to deserve me making a case for them ….so screw it…
Game Quality: ** ¾ (least there’s some good players to watch)
Denver at Dallas:
Let’s be fair….as mushy as the world has gotten over the Broncos….let’s see, they beat the Giants, Eagles, Raiders and Ravens….this ain’t exactly sweeping murders row….ok maybe the Ravens was a decent win….but Denver has played anyone yet with the talent level that Dallas has (especially at corner), Dallas also has the linebackers to cover the TE’s and Backs…..as well as an alleged pass rush (that always seems to disappear in the 4th quarter….hmmmm)….the Cowboys also have the running back to slow and control the tempo as well as playmakers in Dez and Witten….and Dallas does seem to play up for these kinda games (least this Manning never wins in Dallas)…ugh…I really wanna take the Cowboys here….I really….really do…but they’re the Cowboys….they’ll screw it up somehow….but it will make it fun to watch….
Game Quality: ****
Houston at 49ers:
A pretty solid little game on Sunday Night…the Texicans come into San Fran with PLENTY of piss and vinegar after Matt Schaub served up a pick-6 burger (you know in Houston they are selling a Matt Schaub burger right?? Pick 6 toppings and pay DEARLY for it…) right for Richard Sherman who ate that damn thing up so fast he didn’t even have time to burp!! Did you also see JJ Watt with that hockey player scars on his face, still snorting and dripping blood like an enraged bull after the Seattle game last week?? Boy that’s one white boy even I don’t wanna piss off….the 49ers had a nice win against awful St Louis….but when you shut down the Eat a Dick to Boldin show, the Niners roll over and die…I had the niners originally in this game just on Matt Schaub playing Santa Claus….but I can’t see this PISSED OFF team not coming out and responding against a still-flawed 49er team
Game Quality: I should make this six-stars in honor of Schaub, but this is a good one!
San Diego at Oakland:
The game you gotta wait an extra seven hours for thanks to a baseball game…yay! Plus anything the NFL can do to hide the Raiders…they’re all for!!! So let’s bury them at a time on Sunday night that only me and Laflamme will watch them….the Chargers are playing REALLY good on offense (amazing what a little blocking and a coaching change has done for Rivers)….LOL, and the NFL network has the balls to call this a special edition of Thursday Night Football….geesh….I can’t say anything about the Raiders besides the fact that Matt Flynn and Josh Freeman should have to fight to the death to be the next project QB signed elsewhere…if you can stay awake for all this game on either coast….you’re a special kinda person…..
Game Quality: ** (just enough to stay up all night for!!)
Monday Sept 23:
Jets at Falcons:
Boy what a crappy way to end a good week of football…..just about any Jet who’s been doing something on offense is hurt and probably not playing…no Holmes, no Hill, Ivory is not gonna see a lot….this means a lot of Powell (which is good for a fantasy team or two on this cruel bye week)….and it also means a pissed off Atlanta team that should be pretty PIST after the Patriot debacle last week…the Falcons get a week to get healthy at receiver…and just be ANGRY….and probably just out-gun the Jets and overwhelm them with pure firepower…..
Game Quality: DUD
Week 1 Power Rankings:
1. Denver…same old....
2. Chiefs…still looking impressive
3. New England.... *sigh*....I gotta....
4. Miami....held strong in losing in a tough situation....
5. Colts...looking ahead of the curve...again....
1. Seattle….Matt Schaub burgers taste fraking awesome!!
2. New Orleans...can not be stopped at home....
3. Detroit....impressive win in Chicago.....
4. Chicago....still almost came back...
5. Dallas....first place...yay???