I'm feeling rather DJ-ish lately, apparently, because this is the second NFL prediction tangent I've gone off on in the last day or two. Pretty sure this will be the last prediction blog for a while though, because I'm not big on predictions in the first place and I don't even know why I'm doing this. Anyway, now that that's out of the way let's get to the games.
The Packers looked somewhat ordinary against San Francisco last week, giving way to a debate about whether that was because Green Bay has taken a step back or because the 49ers are just that good. I do think the 49ers are that good, and even though I still believe the Pack will be a Super Bowl contender this year I'm going out on a limb here and saying the Bears win. I'm thinking neither defense will be able to stop anybody and both quarterbacks are going to have a field day. And as I've said before, I love Alshon Jeffery. He might be the difference. Bears win, 41-38.
Unlike the CHI-GB game, I don't believe we will see a whole lot of offense in this one. Both of these teams are subpar offensively, and there will most likely be more punts than touchdowns. (Oh, and why hasn't someone told Carson Palmer he's allowed to throw to guys other than Darren McFadden?)I'll say the Raiders win an ugly snoozefest, final score 9-3.
This one looks extremely lopsided on paper but I think it'll be a little closer than a first reactions might indicate. The Jaguars have a decent defense and with Gabbert seemingly maturing as a decision maker and a handful of weapons in MJD, Laurent Robinson and Justin Blackmon, I think the Jaguars will play well enough to keep it close but will ultimately lose to the Texans 24-21.
I don't trust either of these teams' quarterbacks and therefore I don't trust either of these teams to get a win, but I have to pick somebody and I'm definitely not picking Ryan Fitzpatrick's team. I don't know how in the world this guy had me thinking he was a top 12 NFL QB last year, but he's not very good and since Fred jackson is out I don't see any way the Bills could conceivably win. Chiefs take it, 17-14.
Finally a home team I can pick to win. Somehow I was able to see the first four games being won by the road team (I'm questioning my CHI-GB pick already) but that trend will end here. The Browns are bad. Real bad. Weeden was... I can't even think of a bad enough adjective. Let's just say the Bengals are going to win this one 31-3.
I already know people are going to hate me for saying this, but at this stage in their respective careers I like Christian Ponder a bit more than Andrew Luck. Nobody seems to buy Ponder as a long-term solution at the QB position for Minnesota, but I can't help but notice his accuracy and composure and it makes me think he's going to have a starting gig for a long time, or at least as long as his undersized frame will allow him to stay on the field. Plus Adrian Peterson looks like the beast we all knew and loved from a few years ago, so I'm taking the Vikings over the Colts in a game where both quarterbacks play well. Minnesota wins, 28-24.
I really like both of these teams this year. I know Vick played like dog poop (pun sort of intended) against the Browns last week but the Eagles have a ton of other weapons in LeSean McCoy and the WR duo of Jeremy Maclin and Desean Jackson, and chances are Vick won't be that bad again this week. I think the Eagles will be on point offensively and defensively the'll be good enough to outscore the Ravens overall. Eagles pull off the upset, 35-27.
Both of these teams are going to be looking to use Week 2 as an opportunity to right the ship. The Panthers may have only been 6-10 in 2011 but expectations are fairly high with Cam Newton at QB and a whole bunch of capable weapons on offense; Williams, Stewart, Tolbert, Smith, Olsen, LaFell, etc. The Saints, on the other hand, will be uber-motivated after losing their first game to the Redskins and their rookie QB, RGIII. This could make for a pretty good matchup but I don't think it will. Teams have a pretty good blueprint on how to stop Cam Newton after Tampa Bay contained him in Week 1, and I'm definitely not betting against Drew Brees coming off a bad loss in the opener. New Orleans won't be as good this year mainly because of the loss of HC Sean Payton but they'll be plenty good this game. Saints win, 45-29.
Easiest game of the week to predict. I mean who are you taking? Patriots win, 37-17.
I am completely on the fence for this game. It's difficult judging these teams against each other right now because of the 180's each team has pulled from the last time we saw them. The Bucs ended 2011 on a 10 game losing streak but looked much better against Carolina in the 2012 opener, particularly defensively. The Bucs gave up 93 combined points in their final two 2011 games yet were able to almost completely shut down Cam Newton. The Tampa Bay offense, while not spectacular against Carolina, looked efficient and avoided the turnovers that plagued them in 2011. The Giants, conversely, won the Super Bowl following the 2011 season but didn't look good against Dallas during last Wednesday's opener. Dallas had their way with the Giants offensively and New York's offense never posed a real threat to the Cowboys. Current trends aside, I'm taking the Giants to win 17-16.
This is another tough game to predict. I like the Rams a lot this year. I think they're good enough to finish at least 8-8 and possibly 9-7, which might make them a playoff team. I don't really like Washington this year. Or maybe I should say I didn't like Washington this year up until last Sunday's game against the Saints. Pretty dang hard voting against Robert Griffin the Third right about now. So... I like the Rams. I really do. Love their corners. Like I said I believe they could sneak into the playoffs this year. But I don't think they'll beat the Redskins this week. Washinton wins, 31-19.
This one is a little easier for me then it might be for some other folks, mainly because I like Romo more than almost anybody else and I don't like Russell Wilson as much as everybody else, at least not at this stage of his career. Long term I love Wilson. He could have a career anywhere between Seneca Wallace and Drew Brees Lite. Seneca Wallace seems a little more likely, but I'd like to see Drew Brees Lite. Regardless, for this game he's just going to be a rookie QB playing his second NFL game ever. And DeMarcus Ware is going to line up a few feet away from him. It might not be pretty. Either way, Dallas has more weapons on both sides of the ball and in my humble opinion the Cowboys will win this game 28-14.
You know what these two teams have in common? Neither of them can run the ball worth jack. San Diego seems to like letting RBs go; over the years they've given up on LaDainian Tomlinson and Darren Sproles both and are currently saddled with Ryan Matthews who never plays and today's leading rusher for the Chargers, Curtis Brinkley? Who the deuce is this Brinkley guy? Anyway, apparently the Chargers like him more than Darren Sproles. Then again the Titans have "11 carries for 4 years AKA Chris Johnson". What a mess. I guess the Chargers will win, 18-12.
The Jets silenced all their critics with their Week 1 thrashing of the Bills. Problem is, the Steelers are a heck of a lot better defensively than the Bills, and after succumbing to Peyton Manning's Broncos last week Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers will have a chip on their shoulder against the Jets this weekend. In a game featuring two hard-nosed teams, expect the Steelers to one-up the Jets in the hard-nose department. Steelers win, 23-13.
This has the potential to be an awesome game. The Lions, one of the NFL's best offenses versus the NFL's best defense in the 49ers. I think the defense will win the matchup, though, so I'm predicting the 49ers to win the game, 24-21.
The Monday Night Game is a doozy. Great matchup between two teams with a lot of hype, and after Week 1 both teams look deserving of any and all accolades. My gut is telling me not to bet against Peyton. My brain is telling me that Matt Ryan is going to pass for a crap-ton of yards and Atlanta's offense will keep Peyton on the sidelines. Then again, Pittsburgh kept Peyton on the sidelines for major portions of last Sunday's opener and the Broncos still found a way to pull it out. Not this time. Ryan leads the Falcons to a home win over Peyton and the Broncos by a final score of 37-24.
Well there you have it. My predictions for Week 2. If you bothered to read all that jazz then feel free to talk crap to me in the comments. Or leave whatever kind of feedback you like. Thanks for reading my blog.