Week 3 kicks off with a collective groan tonight….I mean really….. Atlanta and Tampa??? Who the hell is this appealing too?? I guess this is the NFL’s new PR-directive….since just about every damned star in the league is being put on the new commissioner’s Corporate CYA list (funny how Goodell himself seems on this list…..remember the weekly list of fines and player discipline reports we’d get the last few years? How come NO ONE has been fined or suspended for ON THE FIELD stuff this year…..fascinating coincidence eh?)….let’s see if I can get through this and actually keep it as football oriented as possible, shall we??
Thursday Sept 18:
Tampa Bay at Atlanta:
So I guess one off-season CAN’T get the Schiano out of the Bucs eh?? Good God they couldn’t block Roger Goodell from scurrying away from the media now?? O-Line is beat up …I think McNown would feel less pain filling in for said Goodell in those press conferences rather than stand behind THAT line….now don’t get me wrong, Atlanta’s not a world beater either….but they do score lots of points at home….the Tampa D hasn’t been awesome either…at least this is a fine week to be starting Matt Ryan and realizing this game will be a bore with PLENTY of overbearing overly righteous spin-doctoring about the NFL “doing the right thing” in these PR disasters they’ve gone through in the last month….
Game Quality: * (the best part about this game will be eating my chili during it!)
Sunday Sept 21:
Dallas at St Louis:
This game should be a layup to talk about…..the Rams got killed by the Vikings (there’s a men against boys joke in there somewhere that I should make while the NFL Gestapo is in hiding and I won’t get three games for it)….and then BARELY beat an awful Tampa team (losing a game on a ten second run-off because Mike Evans got KILLED on the last play….ouch…)….at least their rookie QB should get a nice 7 on 7 drill feeling against the Cowboys defense…and hell the Cowboys played a smart responsible road game last week (usually it takes a MONTH to see Murray get the ball 29 times….maybe Garrett was possessed by aliens??)….and the game plan SHOULD be the same this week….use that big o-line, grind down this Rams defense….minimize Dumbo being Dumbo (plus we have no proof he’s really 100% yet), get the ball to Dez Bryant….lots (THREE LEAGUES dammit)….beat up on the teams that you’re better on (after all they gotta get to week 17 for the Golden Ticket game for the REDSKINS, right?)…I still won’t watch or believe it….this is probably why Dallas wins after all
Game Quality: * (well unless Dumbo implodes then this is must-watch)
San Diego at Buffalo:
Now THIS is the game I’ll be watching! And this is truly the sign of the NFL-apocalypse….the Bills are looking like a LEGIT NFL team….good defense….strong running game….QB game management….small market team…..a total nightmare for the NFL ….add in San Diego travelling across the country to play an early game the week after playing the game of their life against the Super Bowl Champs (I refuse to call them World Champions, shoving 4 games a season down our throat in England HARDLY makes this an international sport)…this has classic letdown game written all over it….for BOTH teams, but the more I expect the Bills to FAIL….the better they seem to do….for now…sorry Sanborn….I just gotta BILLieve this week (not as cool as BOlieving mind you….but I set the bar low in life)
Game Quality: *** ½
Tennessee at Cincinnati:
Did the Titans just lay an egg last week against Dallas, or was the win against the Chiefs a sign of how disastrous the Chiefs really are this year? On the other side of this game, the Bengals have been solid and even looked REALLY good at home without AJ Green in the line-up….if Dallas can run like mad on the Titans I can only imagine what the Bengals can do with Gio and Hill running the ball, add in a good defense to make Jake Locker look as lousy as he is….and I think I found my survivor pick this week just in typing up this game….not much to see here but counting the fantasy points!
Game Quality: **
Ravens at Browns:
The Browns beating the Saints last week was the biggest upset since the 1-2-3 Kid rolled up Razor Ramon on Monday Night Raw!!! (like seriously, that was a HUGE deal way back when….)…this win might be the best thing to happen to the Browns all season….it keeps that next in line first round QB failure of theirs in waiting on the bench and out of the game (I swear to Christ every time I see a team pull this “put the backup QB in for a gimmick play” crap I wanna go Adrian Peterson on someone….)….least the Browns have a good defense, and with Terrence West running the ball a solid attack….the Ravens I still don’t have a true feel for yet….yeah they’re nice at home, but the running game is still suspect , Flacco is meh on the road, and I’m not sold on this defense…..asking the Browns and the Bills to BOTH be winning teams even after week 3 is just asking for our space/time continuum to just COLLAPSE around us…I just can’t do it…though if Cleveland DOES win this you won’t hear the name “Manzell” all year…CMON CLEVELAND!!!! (but I’m not expecting it to happen)
Game Quality: ** ¾
Green Bay at Detroit:
Now here’s a game that should tell us something about both these teams….the Lions looked rather ordinary when an actual top-flight defense was out there (is this a shot at that awful mess the Giants out out there….you betcha!)….the Packers showed something last week, the Jets made one small mistake and the Packers opened the floodgates….I’m not sure about either one of these defenses, but I’m certainly a bigger fan of the Packer offense, its balance and certainly its Quarterback….whoever gets the lead first in this game should be able to set the tone and run away with this one….and going on history, you just gotta like the Packers here….
Game Quality: ** ¾
Minnesota at New Orleans:
The Saints should be kissing the Vikings feet right now……seriously….why?? Well think about it….if the mob wasn’t all over the AP situation (yes the mob was angry BEFORE with Ray Rice, but the pitchforks, torches and hot oil started brewing when AP was brought into this mess)….think about how much we’d be talking about the 0-2 Saints, and how HORRIBLE their defense is (its like Rob Ryan stopped being a DC and started being the conditioning coach instead)…..and now that the Vikings caved to the peer and advertising pressure (and don’t for ONE SECOND think this is the Vikings “doing the right thing” this is fearing the mob and the money backlash)…..Mr Peterson won’t be shredding their defense this week….this is also the Saints are back at home, they had BETTER win all 8 home games this year with the 0-2 start and this game was served up on a silver platter….the only shot the Vikings have is if Cordelle Patterson has a Hall of Fame worthy game…basically the Vikings are screwed….DAMN YOU ANGRY MOB!!!!
Game Quality: ** (thank God this will be on mute, the AP-babble would be painful)
Houston at NY Giants:
I only wish this game was in December….speaking of angry mobs….this Texican defense is one of those (but one we’re ok with)…..the Giant offense line….man I’d have loved to have seen this game as a birthday gift!!! The Giants can’t block, can’t defend….and God help me….Ryan INTs-patrick is gonna be 3-0 and going to Buffalo next week…..I honestly wonder if Eli survives this game….breaking his Iron Man streak would be a nifty notch on the Houston belt….yeah I might have to sit back and enjoy this ass kicking a bit myself!!! Eli may end up in the fetal position whimpering more than McCabe does during Giants games!!!
Game Quality: DUD (this will be ugly, but damn I will enjoy it!)
Washington at Phily:
Ahhhh, the grudge match of the year we’d be hearing to death about….you know….if football experts actually talked about FOOTBALL and weren’t too damn busy showing off their legal knowledge and powers of false sympathy and fake social awareness…..anyway…..D-Jax would have played in this game if he needed an electric motor scooter to run fly patterns in….I’m not worried about that…not like the REDSKINS would have missed his 90 yards receiving this year….but you can be damn sure you’ll get an A game from him….and he’s got the right QB in there….Kirk Cousins seems more the guy for the Gruden offense RG Injury #3 was…he spread the ball around, makes good decisions….and frankly as opposed to lil Theismann there….he’s comfortable and not over-pressuring to show the world “by golly I can do this!”…the Eagles have been a bit lucky this year….the adjustments against Jacksonville were good, coming back on the Eagles (and I’m still waiting for the most obvious defensive hold in history that was never called….amazing how Goodell crawls into his whole and the game of football comes back to us…), the Redskins have the best defense the Eagles have seen this year (not saying much I know)….and also probably, and again not saying much, the best defense in the NFC East….its just a matter of can the REDSKINS do enough to slow down McCoy and Sproles (and If the Eagles don’t miss D-Jax its because Sporles replaced him and then some!)….this should be another fun high scoring affair….but the Eagles are due to slip up and not pull one more out their ass again like they have twice already….plus dammit I picked the REDSKINS to win the NFC East and they just upgraded their QB…..
Game Quality: ***
Colts at Jaguars:
I think Chad Henne just got sacked by Orakpo AGAIN this afternoon….Jesus Christ that was a horrific beating he took against the Redskins last week….it almost gets forgotten since we all saw Griffin channel his inner Joe Theismann in that game too….but that could have been the worst display of “blocking” since the NFL got busted with the Ray Rice tape….lucky for them the Colts can’t rush the quarterback without calling in an air strike and parachutes….but the Colts are 0-2 and desperate as hell….the Jaguars are a bit more used to being 0-2….and frankly just too young and too not ready….it would be kinda cool to see the Colts go 0-3 and legit struggle for once….hell they could tank for a new QB even (I kid), but this is the week the Colts get it right and all you need to do to win the awful AFC South is go 6-0 in the division after all…..
Game Quality: **
Oakland at New England:
Well this is a gimmie….look at what the Pats did to the Vikings without AP last week….the Oakland offense is just about that bad….add in some Patriot offense, shake, stir and pour shots….this is gonna be a class A ass kicking that will tell us NOTHING about the Patriots this year…..
Game Quality: DUD (in the old days the Pats win this by 50)
49ers at Arizona:
This is not an easy game to get a feel for….the Cardinals look like one of those fake 2-0 teams (yes I mean you too Houston), and still having as many problems as answers….though it was nice to see Drew Stanton (wasn’t like he a bust Third Baseman for the Yankees or something) get the dust off and fill in for Carson Palmer against a Giants team that even Rutgers wouldn’t get intercepted FIVE TIMES against (and God how WONDERFUL was that game to watch??)…and then there’s the 49ers….and the Black Tebow I know and love so well….throwing to those wide open Bears defenders and getting sacked left and right ….one side note….how funny was it to see Jonathan Martin get bullied and tossed around by the Bears defense?? (or are bullying jokes no longer OK since the mob has moved on to the newer issue of the week?)…the Niners should be able to run the ball still this week and maybe being away from the house that Jay Cutler built ….you know the one nowhere near San Francisco….might be the best thing for the 49ers…I wish I could pick a tie here….ties are cool and I’m not enthralled with either team….
Game Quality: **
Kansas City at Miami:
I’ve kinda punched out on the Chiefs this year…..they have an all-pro team on the injured list….Andy Reid doesn’t adjust for crap….at least “West” Knile Davis can do a helluva Jamaal Charles impression, the rest of the offense is pretty horrid….the one thing the Chiefs have is they still have those two big pass rushers on the suspect Miami O-Line that the Bills carved up last week….no Moreno to help and pass block makes this an issue too…..but like I said…I’ve punched out on the Chiefs, too many injuries and last year’s good fortune is being paid for in full this year…I should say something funny in here so I’ll use my comment from last week when they panned to Andy Reid and I said “holy sh!t Reid looks like he should be the entire right side of the offensive line!!”…Weight Watchers Andy….get on that!!!!
Game Quality: **
Denver at Seattle:
Gee how CONVIENENT….Wes Welker gets reinstated just in time for this game…..fascinating coincidence….just one more guy for the Seattle defense to shut down and keep in check….this game being in Seattle makes it a lot easier to love the Seahawks, no team defends their home field better (well maybe the Saints, but damn its close)….Denver damn near blew it last week against the Chiefs…and while you can say that’s a wake up call…..the call the Seahawks got from San Diego was a louder one, add in the Seattle style of play tends to beat up the style Denver plays…and I do love seeing Peyton Manning sulk on the sideline and all, always good theater to see that massive forehead sinking on the sideline….Good teams like Seattle don’t lose two games in a row, and you know for damn sure they’ll be up and running in this game….
Game Quality: ***
Steelers at Carolina:
Boy NBC must be FUMING about this game….aside of it being the name and rep of the Steelers this game has ZERO prime time appeal (no offense meant to the Panthers, this should NOT be a Sunday Night Game)….yeah CAMMM is a big name and all…but these teams are kinda blah, I’d rather this be a 4pm game I’d be all into it….anyway…..the Steelers O-Line issues showed up again last week, they couldn’t get ANYTHING going on offense last week….and now they play an actual top-tier defense….I do have to admit I got caught up in the hype from some of the XM Radio NFL shows I listen to about the Steeler Defense (Jim Miller and Pat Kerwin do a fantastic job and they have much cred in my eyes), but boy that was a swing and a miss…..maybe almost as bad as putting the Saints in the Super Bowl this year…oops…..the Carolina billion dollar backfield is actually earning their money this year….Benjamin is a rare rookie wideout actually producing …and home field….yeah this has Carolina written all over it…
Game Quality: ** (This could be Bowling Shoe Ugly..)
Monday Sept 22:
Chicago at NY Jets:
Man the Prime Time games are a bit of a letdown this week aren’t they?? The Bears had the mother of all comebacks on the 49ers last week….and play a similar type team this week in the Jets…running team, inconsistent QB play….good front 7, but weak secondary….yeah…sounds familiar….meanwhile the Jets ***TIME OUTTTTT has been called….all good things about to be said about the Jets never happened ***….it’s scary to feel all good about the Bears ….Cutler does have a habit of just when you think he’s gotten it….he does tend to blow up the next week…its just hard to pick against those big receivers against that Jets pass defense….it might be ugly… it might be awkward (hell this write up feels a lil awkward here)….but I just like that Bears offense too much to go against it here…..
Winner: da BEARSSSSS
Game Quality: **
NFL Week 2 Power Rankings:
- Denver…their pseudo-Super Bowl is NOW
- Bengals….soli, bland, but still a good start….
- Houston….for now…and with Goodell in hiding, defense IS allowed again
- Buffalo…BILL-ieving is a more gooder thinger!!!
- Ravens….Quote the Manta….nevermore…..
- Seattle….I can’t do it off one bad loss…..
- Carolina….looking damned solid and only one of 3 2-0’s left in the NFC
- Phily….out comeback’ed Captain Comeback…still not sold on their defense….
- Arizona….how in THE HELL are they 2-0?!?!?!?
- 49ers….not the panic button, but they certainly are on the watch list……