After two weeks of NFL action I'm standing in at 20-12 and already out of the "eliminator" running (freaking Cowboys!). Though I have cracked the code for those of you still alive. That is, play whomever is facing Buffalo or Cleveland and the teams that take on Indianapolis the last two weeks of the season, it's pretty much a flawless theory.
Anyhow, enough dwelling in the past, let's take a look at week three in the NFL. You know the week where once again you're feeling pretty sure again about what you felt when you made those pre-season predictions prior to week one.
Sunday 1 PM
San Francisco 49ers @ Kansas City Chiefs: I'm not saying the Chiefs are for real. They have been a bend and don't break team thus far and have come up with the big plays when needed. Meanwhile the 49ers hope they're not becoming the team that's finding a different way to lose each week. You know there are people who suggest baseball should create another division for lower payroll teams, the dreck of the NFC West in football would suggest otherwise. Pick: Chiefs.
Buffalo Bills@ New England Patriots: Talk about a cover jinx. Since the 2003 season opener at Orchard Park, where Drew Bledsoe, Lawyer Milloy and Sam Adams trounced the Tom Brady led Pats, they are 0-13 against them ever since. I know it's not a great economy but Ryan Fitzpatrick starting at QB behind that Bills line, is that what a degree from Harvard gets you these days? Pick: Patriots.
Atlanta Falcons @ New Orleans Saints: Both clubs being stuck in the NFC West for over 20 years of Joe Montana and Steve Young, must be seriously question why the NFL ever made them leave. New Orleans just has so many ways of beating you and they're a very opportunistic club on both sides of the ball. Pick: Saints.
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Folks the best defense and quite possibly the best team in the league right now resides in Pittsburgh. Beating an NFC team like Atlanta at home is one thing, but dominating Tennessee on the road is impressive. Tampa is a nice early story. Josh Freeman has evolved quite nicely, but this isn't Cleveland or Carolina. Pick: Steelers.
Tennessee Titans @ New York Giants: Just an ugly display by both clubs last week. On the plus side they were both trounced by superior teams they should have lost to. There's an old saying in football, that everything starts up front on the lines and the Giants are looking really beat up and either don't have the schemes or personnel to mix it up. I fully expect Chris Johnson to have a monumental day for Tennessee. Pick: Titans.
Detroit Lions @ Minnesota Vikings: Trap game for the Vikings? Perhaps. Though they have had their problems on offense, their defense has been stout against two solid teams in New Orleans and Miami. Maybe the Lions defense allows the Vikings offense to shake out of it. Detroit has been a hard luck loser each of the first two weeks, but until they finally win a road game, I won't pick them yet. Pick: Vikings.
Cleveland Browns @ Baltimore Ravens: I thought Cleveland would get off to a better start against Tampa and KC and they did... they just couldn't finish in either contest. Baltimore may be the best 1-1 team in the league and their defense is ridiculous once again. But can that re-tooled offense muster more than ten points for crying out loud? Pick: Ravens.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Carolina Panthers: After this early debacle, John Fox may want to end up somewhere else next season. The Bengals meanwhile had a nice bounce back win against the Ravens. Pick: Bengals.
Dallas Cowboys @ Houston Texans: Call it the "Dubya Bowl," call it "Bush league" if you will, but if the Texans finish 10-6 instead of 9-7 or 8-8 because of Gary Kubiak's timeout in OT against Washington, it will go down as pure genius. Does anyone on the Dallas offense really scare you right now if you're an opposing defense? Pick: Texans.
Sunday 4 PM
Washington Redskins @ St. Louis Rams: Like I just said, without Gary Kubiak's TO in OT, the 'Skins are 2-0. Like I have always maintained, I don't believe any quarterback has done more with less in this league than Donovan McNabb. Normally this would feel like a trap game to me, but not when Washington has McNabb and Mike Shanahan at the helm. I do like a lot of what the Rams have done thus far even though they're 0-2. They'll learn how to pull out some close wins, but later in the season. Pick: Redskins.
Philadelphia Eagles @ Jacksonville Jaguars: One really wonders what the Eagles plans for the future are. One also has to wonder if starting Michael Vick wasn't the plan all along, that they just didn't want to deal with the backlash that might come along with such a pronouncement. It's a shame the Jags didn't draft Tim Tebow because they must be one of the most irrelevant teams in the sport. Pick: Eagles.
Oakland Raiders @ Arizona Cardinals: Normally I'd like almost any team out of the AFC over a team from the NFC West. I'll make an exception here. Sure Arizona got pasted last week and barely got past the Rams, but then again so did the Raiders. Pick: Cardinals.
Indianapolis Colts @ Denver Broncos: Is it just me or is anyone beginning to think that the Colts lost that first game intentionally just to avoid late season questions about going for an undefeated season? Because they look like an absolute machine once again. I fully expect the Colts to destroy the banged up Broncos secondary. Pick: Colts.
New York Jets @ Miami Dolphins: An impressive win by the Jets last week over New England. But the Dolphins do the same things, maybe even better, but without the brash bravado. Remember Miami swept the season series last year and they'll be hyped for their first home contest of the season. Pick: Dolphins.
Monday NightGreen Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears: It'll be really fun to watch Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler sling the ball all over the field in this one. Though I could just see Green Bay's defense bailing them out at just the right time when they need it in the end. Pick: Packers.