Week 4: Recovery Time

Last week was a rough 5-10-1 against the spread … we got worse. 8-8 money line. I will fix this issue, but what a week that was! Too many upsets and we see a lot of teams going 0-3 that are quite puzzling, Giants and Redskins! Thursday night is here and I know you want to see the picks for Week 4!

How I and the G-Men Feel

How I and the G-Men Feel

THURSDAY

49ers @ Rams – Money Line: 49ers — Spread: Rams (+3.5)

The 49ers kept up their poor play against the Colts. Andrew Luck didn’t have a great game but he commanded it while his counterpart in Colin Kaepernick struggled mightily against a Colts team not known for its defense. Did the league figure out the 49ers’ read option over the offseason or is this just a bad stretch of games for the Niners and their 2012 hero? The Rams looked awful in Dallas last week and I expect them and their underrated defense to bounce back this Thursday night. Both teams coming off bad losses and the 49ers will probably be without Patrick Willis and Aldon Smith.

SUNDAY

The rest of these will not have blurbs for this week … sorry to disappoint!

Steelers @ Vikings – Money Line: Steelers — Spread: Steelers (E)

You sound like you’re from London!!!

Ravens @ Bills – Money Line: Ravens — Spread: Ravens (-3.5)

Ravens big win and Bills bad loss in Week 3, expect the Ravens to have fun with EJ Manuel and the injury ravaged Bills’ defense.

Bengals @ Browns – Money Line: Bengals — Spread: Bengals (-4.5)

I’ll regret this one because the Browns and Bengals always play close.

Colts @ Jaguars – Money Line: Colts — Spread: Colts (-9.0)

Big win for the Colts last week in San Fran and this is definitely a let down game, but I can’t pull myself to take the Jags.

Seahawks @ Houston – Money Line: Seahawks — Spread: Seahawks (-3.0)

‘Hawks embarrassed the Jags last week, now they go on the road to play a Houston team probably upset at the way they got manhandled by the Ravens last week.

Cardinals @ Bucs – Money Line: Cardinals — Spread: Cardinals (+2.5)

Bad loss to the Saints for the Cardinals and then bad loss to the Patriots for the Bucs who have now benched their “franchise” quarterback in favor of their newest rookie, Mike Glennon welcome to the fire.

Bears @ Lions – Money Line: Bears — Spread: Bears (+3.0)

Bears are really the underdog here? The Bears look like one of the best teams in the league as their line looks better and Jay Cutler seems under control. Sorry Lions!

Giants @ Chiefs – Money Line: Giants — Spread: Giants (+4.5)

Honey Badger don’t care!

Jets @ TItans – Money Line: Jets — Spread: Jets (+4.5)

Both MetLife teams on the road to win? Why not! (Herm Edwards voice)

Cowboys @ Chargers – Money Line: Cowboys — Spread: Cowboys (-1.5)

Don’t care, I wish the ‘Boys would lose though.

Redskins @ Raiders – Money Line: Redskins — Spread: Redskins (-3.0)

Redskins are going to get that win regardless of whether Terrelle Pryor plays for the Raiders.

Eagles @ Broncos – Money Line: Broncos — Spread: Broncos (-10.5)

High scoring, the Eagles won’t be able to keep up with how good the Broncos’ defense is.

Patriots @ Falcons – Money Line: Falcons — Spread: Falcons (-1.0)

No Gronk and Amendola means a loss for the Pats as Matt Ryan tosses it around the Georgia Dome where he loves playing.

Dolphins @ Saints – Money Line: Saints — Spread: Saints (-5.5)

I like the ‘Fins, but going into New Orleans Tannehill will struggle against the revamped Saints’ defense.

siren

UPSET ALERT

  • Chiefs
  • Titans

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

SURVIVOR POOL PICKS

  • Colts
  • Bengals
  • Ravens
  • Redskins (ballsy at 0-3)

 

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Week 3: The Real Start of the Season.

I apologize for not giving insights to the previous couple of college football games. I, however, intend, to not miss another week. This post is intended to breakdown the top 25 match ups throughout the college world. Unfortunately, this week holds a grudge match between two teams from last year. By that, I refer to the early Sunday NFL game that is Texas A&M and Alabama. With that in hand, let the madness begin!!

#25 Ole MIss. vs. Texas

With the 550 rushing yards giving up from Texas defense, the once prominent and powerful longhorns have fallen from grace. The one possible chance that can save Texas and bring them back in the polls is this chance Texas is a powerful offense and David Ash does have a plethora of weapons. Texas has the ability to beat this upcoming young Ole MIss team, but the key is defense. the defense has to shutdown the experienced receiving corps. This Big twelve defense has another task poised in front. This SEC team has the always speedy and illusive Jeff Scott. Texas is able to win if they shut them down. Ole Miss has a multitude of play makers to be shutdown on offense. Ole Miss is going to walk out of this game with a win and a statement that this team has been pieced to be a legitimate threat for South Carolina, LSU, and Georgia. Ole Miss wins 31- 21.

#24 TCU vs. Texas Tech

This is going to be an interesting game and I will say this is upset alert for the Red Raiders. TCU played LSU and lost by ten points. The next week they win by three scores but this does not matter. TCU’s defense will not match up with the up tempo no huddle that the Air Raid Raiders have to offer. In addition, the Red raider’s defense has improved a lot more recently and they are ready to be the wall that has been expected all these years. upset alert with Texas Tech winning 45-24. Sorry TCU.

#21 Notre Dame vs. Purdue

Notre Dame falls as expected because they are not as potent as they used to be. Notre Dame will win with Tommy Rees having another strong game. The defense for Notre Dame is the main concern at the moment. Purdue does not have a great offense, but Notre Dame’s defense surrendered 34 points last week which is unheard. The team was second last year in allowing the least amount of points. It is proven the team can score, but the Notre Dame defense must do its job and deny Purdue.  Notre dame takes an easy win 34- 17

#20 Wisconsin vs. Arizona State

This is going to be a fun game to watch and keep you stopped until the end. For Both teams, this is the real match up for the year and each one can win the game. I have to give it to WIsconsin at the moment. Wisconsin is prized to be more complete and impressive compared to its opponent. They have a dominant line along with the running game. All three running backs already have at least 250 yards rushing and this has been accomplished by 3 separate backs. Their quarterback (Joel Stave) has 416 passing yards with 7 tds and 2 picks. Overall, Wisconsin looks very good in his game and I look forward to seeing how well they perform. Wisconsin walks away with a nice win, but Purdue will put up points unlike the sub division A teams. 31-17 Wisconsin.

#19 Washington vs. Illinois

Washington performed a smart move by including a bye week between the past #19 ranked Boise State and Illinois so they can prepare for the long road ahead. Look for Bishop Sankey (junior) to have another strong performance against the Illini defense which has already surrendered 100 yards per game to two sub division teams. Illinois has also surrendered too many points (41 combined) to these sub division teams. Washington comes in with quarterback Keith Price ready to go and looking phenomenal off the first game performance. However, Washington’s real surprise will be the defense which only allowed Boise State to score two field goals. Washington wins 31-10.

#17 Northwestern vs. W. Michigan

Northwestern has proven me wrong in the past two weeks so I am prepared to do this right, unless they wanna lose to Western Michigan. This team has outscored the previous two teams who are not sub division teams. Northwestern’s passing game with Trevor Siemian leading is a potent attack group. In addition,  Treyvon Green has aided the team in a unopposed running game with already 4 total rushing touchdowns. Northwestern wins 38-10 with a strong performance by Siemian.

#16 UCLA vs. #23 Nebraska

I am not going with an upset alert. The reason is almost the same with Washington. This UCLA team has proven to have a strong batch of starters. The UCLA team looks to continue their defensive prowess against a very potent offensive unit. Tyler Martinez leads the Cornhuskers and has looked excellent through the first couple of weeks. The main fight for this game will be the Huskers offense and the UCLA offense. I expect UCLA to control the tempo with the run and to put the game in hand early on. UCLA wins 31-17,

#14 Oklahoma vs. Tulsa

This one is not even close like most of the remaining games. Tulsa can barely stand up to teams in their own division nowadays. Oklahoma comes in the game at home and awaiting a weak C-USA team. The strongest player in the game will Brennan Clay the runningback for Oklahoma. He has already accumulated 213 running yards with 1 touchdown in the season. The Oklahoma team has allowed 7 points in both games which is the lowest in the entire country. Oklahoma wins this no problem with no sweat or tears shed from it. 45-6 Oklahoma.

#13 South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt

This is a much more interesting game to watch. South Carolina looks to bounce back from the close loss last week to Georgia. Clowney has knocked himself out of the heisman race for the moment, but he could resurface with a strong performance against this Vanderbilt offense. Look for the Matthews to be the leading receiver in this game as Vanderbilt will throw a lot since South Carolina takes an early lead. South Carolina comes out on top though, 31-13.

#12 Oklahoma State. vs. Lamar

Another interesting game to watch out for. All the speculations and scandals about Oklahoma State can distract the team having an easy win in this sub division game. However, I could not see Oklahoma State, who is now the power house of the Big 12, side tracked that much to surrender a fair amount of points to Lamar. More or less, I could not see the Oklahoma State team side tracked to not put up enough points against this sub division defense. This game should be over around the 3rd quarter for Oklahoma State taking an easy win at home and not worrying about the scandals involving their school. Oklahoma State wins 38-10.

#11 Michigan vs. Akron

Last week Michigan accomplished the Notre Dame game as I expected they would. Devin Gardner looks good, but his full potential has not been tapped into just yet. The team scored a high 34 points against the stingy Notre Dame whom allowed very little points last year to Michigan. With Gardner, the team will take this game in an instant and not worry about this MAC opponent knocking at their doorstep. Michigan wins 45-16.

#10 Florida State. vs. Nevada.

I would say this is an upset alert, but I called the pittsburgh vs. Florida State game completely wrong and for that I apologize to the Florida State program. This team comes in from a bye with their freshman sensation Jameis Winston emerging as a strong candidate for december. Weinston knows how to throw the ball with some purpose and how to lead an efficient attack. This is something that Florida State has looked for in their QB’s in the past but the defense has always carried them. I think Florida State keeps it close until the second half when they open it up and bench the starters with ten minutes left in the game. Florida State wins 42-15.

#8 LSU vs. Kent State

This is another strong game for the seeding team. Mettenberger has transformed into a strong quarterback who can control his offense. In addition, Kent State has not been the same team. Look for LSU’s defense to shut down Kent State and bring this game to an end quickly. However, I think Kent State has a good chance to beat their matchup in the top 10 out of all the lower teams playing against the others this week. They have a  dyanmic team who scores consistently at times, but they must out produce the home team. If they were home, I would give Kent State a higher score, but LSU stays strong with a 31-20 win.

#7 Louisville vs. Kentucky

This is Louisville’s first challenge of the entire year and a semi strong one. Bridgewater looks to continue his campaign with already 800 passing yards and seven touchdowns against the weak Kentucky team. Kentucky has been a weak team in the SEC consistently. I cannot see Louisville going wrong in this game considering they are a stronger team, but Kentucky is an SEC team and they are home. So, I can see this game being close for a while, but the talent between the two teams will begin to show and Louisville wins 35-13 against the SEC team.

#5 Stanford vs. Army

Stanford comes into this game giving a strong performance in their opener. Now, they go to Army to play the knights who have a knack for running the ball…like a lot. Gaffney has already accumulated 100 yards and 2 touchdowns in his debut nad looks to increase on the performance throughout the game. Army will be routed very quickly in this game despite being home and having a potent run game. The end score will be a little close, but the Cardinals will prevail. 28-17 goes to the Cardinals and they survive another week.

#4 Ohio State vs. California 

This is a bit of a strong one to look at. Braxton Miller is hurt and does not look like he did last year. In addition, Ohio State is going to play at California and these Golden Bears are looking for an upset alert win. They missed their chance against Northwestern in the season opener. Now, they have another shoot at taking down a top 25 team and Ohio State looks a little weak right now. Their defense looks terrible since they have surrendered so many points to weaker teams. I expect California to win by double digist, but this occurs towards the end as Miller tries to throw the ball and it is taken the other way. Cali wins 35-24.

#2 Oregon vs. Tennessee

I am not going to take long on this one. Oregon is still potent even without Chip Kelly’s offensive prowess there. The team is averaging more points with him gone than before. The original black mamba looks to turn things up with Mariota against Tennessee. The offense will be too much for this Tennessee defense which ends up in their route already. The defense will cause turnovers against Bray and the volunteers to the point that the game is out of hand in the 2nd quarter. Oregon wins 59-14 in this game.

#1 Alabama vs. #6 Texas A&M

Two of the best teams around go head to head as Nick Saban is out for sweet sweet vengeance against Manziel. Although McCarron does not look like the strong heisman candidate they were boasting about, it does not matter. The A&M defense has been almost non existent in the past couple of games. Manziel has 6 touchdowns with around 400 passing yards, but not a lot of rushing yards in hand. Look for multiple blitzs to hinder Manziel in this game. Saban has already looked all the tape on Manziel and made a sound proof strategy. He has even had a bye week to plan the game out and prep both sides of his teams to defeat A&M. The only thing to save Manziel is his line and receivers. If the line holds nad the receivers somehow get open against this athletic and powerful secondary, Manziel may pull this game out. In addition, the Aggies are also home which could help them with having McCarron not hear the snap count and the defense getting an advantage over Bama. I am going with roll tide since they are the more poweful and all around team from what I have seen in the one game they had.  31-17. Roll tide

Well, these are the predictions for the week. Thanks for reading and see you next week. Remember you heard the word from here.

What if We Could Alter the NFL Logos?

It’s Week 3 of the NFL and I’m already fully engulfed in all of the madness, but how about a little shakeup? Imagine if the NFL did a total re-haul of all the logos and what each one would look like. Recently, Barstool Sports has linked us to some of the ideas fans have had and I actually like most if not all of them. Remember when the NFL announced they were switching to Nike and dropping Reebok from their jersey production? There were images of what one illustrator thought would be possible with the new agreement with Nike and the possibility of Nike Pro Combat Jerseys, but none of that happened or even came close, except the Seahawks. If only (sighs).

Here is a link to three articles:

Simply redesigned logos

http://www.barstoolsports.com/philly/super-page/somebody-redesigned-the-logos-for-all-32-nfl-teams/

(Original link: http://imgur.com/gallery/yGJKk)

XRJXsWw-500x281hhNuHqI-500x281

Game of Thrones (somewhat) inspired NFL logos:

http://philly.barstoolsports.com/random-thoughts/somebody-made-nfl-logos-game-of-thrones-style-and-they-are-amazing/

(Original link: http://whatshotdjroomba.minus.com/uploads)

n10

Hypothetical Uniform redesigns from 2010, just to look at what could have been. Have fun with your uni’s like NCAA does! Looking at you, Nike and NFL: (Scroll through with arrows)

http://www.businessinsider.com/check-out-these-insane-nfl-uniform-redesigns-2010-11#arizona-cardinals-1

Waiting on you, Nike!

Waiting on you, Nike!

 

 

 

Week 3: Let’s not Overreact

12-4 Week 2 money line, against the spread we got better going 7-8-1 rather than 4-12 in Week 1. I’ll get better at the spreads, that’s a promise, but let’s keep the ball rolling on the money line picks ’cause we’re on fire. I will reiterate we make picks with spreads based on opening lines from Sundays before the respective week.

Off to Indy!!!

Off to Indy!!!

THURSDAY

Chiefs @ Eagles – Money Line: Eagles — Spread: Chiefs (+3.0)

The Eagles high powered offense was outmatched by Philip Rivers? The one weakness of the Eagles is what Chip Kelly fears the most, the offense sitting on the sidelines. If their opponent can dominate the time of possession then the Eagles could see a bunch of losses. The Chiefs defense is underrated after a solid showing against the Cowboys in Arrowhead. If Alex Smith can be the 13-3 Alex Smith from two years ago the Chiefs are headed to the playoffs.

SUNDAY

Texans @ Ravens – Money Line: Texans — Spread: Texans (+1.0)

The Texans keep needing late game comebacks and that will only work for so long. Ben Tate has been outplaying Arian Foster, but has only been getting about 25% of the snaps that the overused Foster has. I’m not saying Foster has lost a step after missing training camp and the preseason, but it wouldn’t be outrageous to think so. DeAndre Hopkins might be emerging as the second option behind Andre Johnson the Texans have always desired. The Ravens’ defense looked much better against the Browns last week, but the offense still looks off without many weapons. If they could get Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce on the field most of the time, they would be better off, but Rice might not play, tilting the scales.

Giants @ Panthers – Money Line: Giants — Spread: Giants (+2.5)

Eli Manning has 7 interceptions already and the G-Men have 10. Yikes. They haven’t looked like themselves, their pass rush can get no pressure leaving their somewhat surprisingly deep corners out on islands. The Giants need to give the ball to David Wilson and get over the fumbles, it’s time to turn the corner on it. They need to right this ship. Cam Newton and the Panthers seemed to find a stride somewhat against the Bills. We will see how the talent-less offense responds against the Giants’ defense at home. The Panthers front seven is surprisingly good, like the Giants on the road as dogs.

Rams @ Cowboys – Money Line: Cowboys — Spread: Rams (+3.5)

The Rams played catch-up and almost completed the comeback against the Falcons last week. The defense is probably seething after that embarrassing first half, which is bad for Tony Romo. I will repeat the Rams have speedsters all over the field on offense, so watch out Cowboys. The ‘Boys looked real good in the first quarter, especially the connection of Romo and Dez Bryant, but they strayed away from Bryant in the second half, leading to a bad loss. They will look to rebound in Jerry’s World, but don’t expect the run game to get going against this front seven.

Chargers @ Titans – Money Line: Titans— Spread: Chargers (+3.0)

The Chargers shocked the world with their first half performance against the Texans on MNF opening weekend. Then, they froze hell over and beat the Chip Kelly Eagles in Philly. Philip Rivers looked like vintage Philip Rivers, which is something we shouldn’t count on every week. With no run game and few weapons on offense the Chargers will have trouble finding more wins, but might not be hard pressed to find one in Nashville. Nothing to say about the Titans, except their in trouble with an unhappy Kenny Britt. The biggest challenge for the Chargers is the fact they traveled to Philly, back to San Diego, only to come back to Tennessee.

Buccaneers @ Patriots – Money Line: Patriots — Spread: Buccaneers (+7.5)

The Bucs look bad, but played the hell out of the Saints. Josh Freeman is in the doghouse of Greg Schiano and probably won’t find his way out until he starts winning some games. Darrelle Revis appeared to be there as well, but he claims they have smoothed things out. The Bucs’ defense isn’t their problem it’s the offense, but that’s the problem the Pats have right now. Tom Brady has looked pedestrian through the first two weeks and I doubt it will continue when Gronk comes back, but that probably won’t be this weekend. The defenses will keep this game close.

Browns @ Vikings – Money Line: Vikings — Spread: Vikings (-3.0)

Well this is awkward. The Browns have traded away their best player and are back into a rebuilding mode after having hopes for two games? Their defense has held up their side, but the offense has not been able to get going and won’t find any more success with Richardson gone (they have replaced him with Willis McGahee) and Brian Hoyer starting now. Adrian Peterson is salivating at the thought of his Vikings competing in a game, which results in more carries for him. Expect a heavy workload for Purple Jesus this week, but this team might need to turn the page on Christian Ponder soon.

Packers @ Bengals – Money Line: Packers — Spread: Packers (+1.5)

The Packers looked like the Packers of two years ago scoring in bunches against the Redskins last week. Rodgers looked like his MVP self and his weapons are pretty solid yet again. James Starks filled in quite nicely for Eddie Lacy as he was knocked out with a concussion (no pun intended). Their defense allowed the Redskins to make a game out of it, but shouldn’t find too much trouble against the Andy Dalton led Bengals. The Bengals defense had their way with the Steelers and Big Ben. The offense struggled yet again at the hands of Andy Dalton. All of his down-field passes seem to go out of bounds. I like the Packers offense to outrun the defense of the Bengals.

Lions @ Redskins – Money Line: Redskins — Spread: Redskins (-2.5)

The Lions lost a heart-breaker to the Cardinals in Arizona last week and now have to travel back to Washington to face an 0-2, but hungry Redskins team. Calvin Johnson exploded again on Patrick Peterson in a losing effort, while Reggie Bush came out of the game all banged up, but Joique Bell has and would fill in nicely. RGIII has not been called upon to run, but now every media outlet is saying that’s why the Redskins keep losing. We will see how the game planning has changed over the past week, but expect him to stay in the pocket a lot and sling the ball around against a bad Lions defense. This should be a shootout.

Cardinals @ Saints – Money Line: Saints — Spread: Cardinals (+7.5)

The Cardinals eeked out a late win after losing a late on against the Rams in Week One. Carson Palmer is having fun with this new offense he is playing under, but Larry Fitzgerald’s injury will not benefit him. The Cardinals defense is a solid unit, but I don’t know if they can stick with the Saints. The Saints defense has looked better, but now they just lost Patrick Robinson and are very thin every where on defense. Drew Brees will explode sooner or later, and might be in for a big game at home, but I’ll take the 7.5 points considering the Cards also play in a dome.

Falcons @ Dolphins – Money Line: Falcons — Spread: Falcons (+1.5)

Steven Jackson won’t play this week and nobody knows when he will be back, but that means Matt Ryan gets to have fun. The Falcons are 1-1 after losing a heart-breaker at the Thunderdome, but face another tough defense like last week against the Rams. The Falcons are getting thinner on the defensive side after losing Sean Witherspoon to the I.R. The Dolphins are surprisingly 2-0, having beaten the Browns and the offensive line-less Colts in Indy. Ryan Tannehill has looked improved and Lamar Miller looked better last week and will look good against a bad Falcons defense again this week. If Tannehill and Mike Wallace continue to build their rapport, this team could sneak into the playoffs.

Bills @ Jets – Money Line: Jets — Spread: Bills (+2.5)

The Bills inched out an exciting win at home last week. Now they face what’s turning into a typical Rex Ryan defense at MetLife Stadium. Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods are already on the same page as E.J. Manuel, spelling trouble for opposing defenses, especially if C.J. Spiller can get into the open field. The Bills defense just needs to stand its ground. The Jets lost an ugly one to the Patriots on Thursday Night in Foxborough. Geno Smith cannot keep making the mistakes he was baited into by Bill Belichick. The defense is how I’m going to make this pick.

Jaguars @ Seahawks – Money Line: Seahawks — Spread: Seahawks (-16.5)

The line has been at 20 as well, and I still would’ve taken it. The Jags look like the cream of the crap so far, and might be without Maurice Jones-Drew, good luck with that Jacksonville! The Seahawks had their way with the 49ers yet again last week even with Russell Wilson’s poor performance. The Seahawks might send out the backups after the third quarter in this one.

Colts @ 49ers – Money Line: 49ers — Spread: Colts (+10.5)

Post-Trent Richardson Trade this line has moved only half a point to a point. The Colts merely gave up a first round pick (most likely in the 20s) to get the former #3 pick overall from the Browns. They have massively upgraded their running back, but their line still sucks. Andrew Luck will now have a new play toy and a great 1-2 punch in Richardson and Bradshaw. The Niners were embarrassed on national television and I don’t think they liked it. I see them embarrassing the Colts to save face, but garbage time will see this game get closer.

Bears @ Steelers – Money Line: Bears — Spread: Bears (-1.0)

When a road team is favored, it’s never good for the home team. The Steelers can’t get much going on offense except from their speedy receivers on dink and dunk passes. The Steelers kept attempting to go to Jerrico Cotchery on Monday Night, which left me wondering what was Todd Haley smoking in Cinci. Their offensive line is horrendous and will struggle against a good Bears’ defense. The Bears offense pulled out a victory in the last seconds of their 31-30 win against the Vikings. The defense will have a better game against the mostly talent-less Steelers’ offense.

MONDAY

Raiders @ Broncos – Money Line: Raiders (just kidding, Broncos) — Spread: Broncos (-15.5)

CharlesWoodsonTackle_original

Charles Woodson made one of the best tackles I’ve ever seen on MJD last week to save a touchdown, but that’s all I can say about that game. Good luck, Raiders! Peyton Manning and the Broncos went into MetLife Stadium and dismantled the Giants and little brother Eli. The Broncos are firing on all cylinders already and Knowshown Moreno looks good right now and expect a lot of carries from him as the Broncos will be up early and often here. I can see the game finishing closer than expected because it is Monday Night Football after all.

siren

UPSET ALERT

This week I am putting the Dolphins, Panthers, Bengals, Titans and Redskins on Upset Alert. I know it’s a lot of teams but one of the most beloved things about the NFL is the parity every year.

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

SURVIVOR PICK

This week let’s just say take the

  • Seahawks
  • Broncos
  • Vikings

No need to look at anyone else, the Vikings could lose, but the Browns will look bad this week.

Week 2: Aftermath of Week 1

kaephit

RIP Kaep … Ouch-town Population you, Bro! (Pepper Brooks)

What did we look like after Week 1 you ask? Taking a look at the money line Sports Gone HAM went a solid 11-5, but against the spread we were a truly disappointing 4-10-2 (pushes). We will get better on the spreads, but it is the first time we are trying and Week 1 saw some head-scratchers. Let’s get into week one and reflect on some injuries and Week 1 games during each match-up:

THURSDAY

Jets @ Patriots (-12.0) – Money Line: Patriots —- Spread: Jets (+12.0)

The Pats are hurting on offense and it showed last weekend. Stevan Ridley has struggled to hold onto the ball ever since the playoffs last season and now Shane Vereen, his talented backup, is out until at least Week 10. Danny Amendola is not expected to play and they are still missing Gronk. It looks like Thompkins and Edelman will be the one-two punch. The Jets pulled a win out of nowhere last Sunday as Geno Smith scrambled out of bounds and was inexplicably pushed out of bounds by Lavonte David. The Jets defense looked solid as usual last weekend, but the offense looked somewhat anemic in Smith’s first start. He did show some maturity throughout the game taking some sacks and not making horrible throws. I like their defense to keep this game somewhat close.

SUNDAY

Chargers @ Eagles (7.5) – Money Line: Eagles —- Spread: Eagles (-7.5)

The Chargers had an epic collapse with only twenty minutes to go in their Monday Night Football game against the Houston Texans. From what I saw in the first half, Philip Rivers looked pretty good and crisp after an off-season where his possible regression was called into question. The second half happened and it looked like the critics could be right, but only time will tell. The Eagles fumbled the ball on a questionable call their first drive, but dominated after that. They ran 53 plays in the first half with their new Oregon offense and looked sharp. They play fast because that’s what their top three guys have, speed and lots of it (Vick, Jackson and McCoy). Look for the Eagles to tire out the Chargers and coast in the second half.

Browns @ Ravens (-6.5)  – Money Line: Ravens —- Spread: Ravens (-6.5)

The Browns looked lost at home against the Dolphins. Besides Jordan Cameron, Trent Richardson is the best receiving option and he lines up in the backfield. The Ravens defense will be angry after being embarrassed, man-handled, torched and simply run off the field by the Broncos and Peyton’s seven touchdowns on Opening Night. The Ravens offense was average with a lack of talent in their receiving corps as well. Marlon Brown seems like he might make a nice addition in the slot, but Torrey Smith can’t man the outside by himself. This will be interesting and even though I think 6.5 is a lot of points, I still go Ravens at home.

Titans @ Texans (-9.0) – Money Line: Texans —- Spread: Texans (-9)

The Titans looked good, but that was against a really bad offense that calls its home Pittsburgh. That line is horrific and made the Titans defense look like … well the Steelers’ defense. Chris Johnson found some lanes against a stout run defense, but his sledding won’t get easier against the tough Texans defense. The Texans looked disastrous in the first half against the Chargers, but turned into the AFC South champs in the second half. Andre Johnson did his Andre Johnson thing and broke 100 yards as Matt Schaub abused him in the target area. Arian Foster looked a little rusty and Ben Tate looked poised to take over when he could. Gary Kubiak said they might need to split the carries more evenly if this keeps up. I still like Texans giving the 9.

Dolphins @ Colts (-3.0) – Money Line: Colts —- Spread: Colts (-3.0)

The Dolphins beat a bad looking Browns team while leaving their most talented player on offense out of the equation, which left him pretty upset with the coaching staff. Mike Wallace needs to be given the ball because he’s a play-maker, and if their run game can’t get going he has the talent to make something out of nothing. The Colts looked flat for some reason against a bad Oakland defense. The Colts line still isn’t the best and their run game is at the bottom of the pack. If Ahmad Bradshaw can’t overtake Vic Ballard, it could mean more passes for Andrew Luck each game. At home I like the Colts

Panthers (-3.0) @ Bills – Money Line: Bills —- Spread: Bills (+3.0)

The Panthers front seven looked great against a great run team in the Seahawks. However, that team had traveled from the other corner of the country and played at 1 P.M. and I don’t care who you are, that’s never easy. The Panthers offense looked horrendous against a great defense, so try and get a read on that one. The Bills looked pretty good against the Patriots and took them to the wire, but couldn’t finish the job. E.J. Manuel had a couple of nice throws, but his defense couldn’t hold up against Tom and the Pats beat-up offense. I like the Bills at home.

Rams @ Falcons (-7.0) – Money Line: Falcons —- Spread: Rams (+7.0)

The Rams came roaring back against the Cardinals and used “Legatron” to cap off the come from behind victory. Bradford looked better than the past few years behind a revamped offensive line featuring newly acquired Jake Long. He has explosive weapons all over the field, Richardson, Austin, Givens, and Cook and he seems to be hitting it off with all. The defense is underrated and can get in the backfield as well as force turnovers. The Falcons are coming off a heart-breaker against their arch-rival Saints. Their defense played better than anyone expected with Asante Samuel, but their offense looked nothing like last years with Roddy White being banged up. I want to pick the Falcons, but their defense and the speed around Bradford worry me.

Redskins @ Packers (-7.0) – Money Line: Packers —- Spread: Redskins (+7.0)

RGIII looked rusty, but then he settled in against the Eagles defense. Alfred Morris did not look like himself on a very costly fumble, and the defense was tired after the Eagles ran their up-tempo offense. The defense will need to shore up against Rodgers and the Pack to have a shot. The P ackers put up a good fight against the reigning NFC Champions, but simply couldn’t put a cap on the Kaep. Their secondary was lit up by the likes of Anquan Boldin and Vernon Davis, which makes RGIII feel confident. The Pack tried to establish the run game while airing it out with Rodgers. They have a good fit in Lacy and he likes what he saw from McCoy’s performance on Monday night I’m Sure.

Cowboys @ Chiefs (-2.5) – Money Line: Cowboys —- Spread: Cowboys (+2.5)

The Cowboys defense looked great forcing 6 turnovers against the Giants, but the offense was unable to capitalize on each turnover as the Giants were on the verge of a comeback until the final turnover did them in. Tony Romo suffered bruise ribs after getting finally hit by the Giants defensive linemen. The Cowboys still looked like the better team on Sunday and could be a force with all their talent if they can get the offense really flowing. The Chiefs looked well-rounded, but that was against the lowly Jaguars. The defense forced turnovers and got into the backfield, which could help against the Cowboys O-Line. Their defense will need to perform up to better standards to stop the Cowboys offensive weapons. I like the ‘Boys here even with Dez Bryant injured.

Vikings @ Bears (-6.0) – Money Line: Bears —- Spread: Bears (-6.0)

The Vikings pass game is going to be a problem for a while unless someone can teach Christian Ponder how to be an NFL quarterback. As was the case last year, Adrian Peterson will face a lot of “full box” situations because most teams want leave the game in Ponder’s hands. The Vikings corners looked good last week shutting down Calvin Johnson, but the whole defense was embarassed by probably the most dangerous open field player in the NFL in Reggie Bush. The Bears withstood a tough test from the Bengals last week and somehow Jay Cutler did not take a sack. Brandon Marshall and Cutler are on a whole other level right now. Their defense isn’t the same without Urlacher and Tillman was abused by AJ Green, but the Vikes don’t have that type of outside weapon so Bears here.

Saints (-3.5) @ Buccaneers – Money Line: Saints —- Spread: Saints (-3.5)

The Saints defense stopped the Falcons. Say what? The Saints offense looked pretty good with Sean Payton back, but they can definitely do more. Just wait till they hit their stride, but their defense will leak and won’t hold teams to 17 very often to be honest. The Bucs lost in shocking fashion. Their defense looked good with the addition of Revis, but the offense looked lost. Josh Freeman is in a make or break year, his contract year, and he has weapons that most quarterbacks would thrive with. They need to fix his focus otherwise it’ll be another long season to the team with pewter helmets. Saints here.

Lions (-1.0) @ Cardinals – Money Line: Cardinals —- Spread: Cardinals (1.0)

The Lions newest offensive toy looked fantastic against the Vikings; however, they can’t rely on Reggie Bush to beat better teams like the Arizona Cardinals. Calvin Johnson will needed to produce more than 4 catches for the Lions to keep winning games. Suh made another stupid mistake that cost him a ton of money. The Cardinals looked good throughout the game against a good Rams defense and Carson Palmer seems to fit Bruce Arians’ offensive scheme. Their defense looked solid as well and they have talent that’ll surprise most. I think at home the Cardinals will take this one.

Jaguars @ Raiders (-6.0) – Money Line: Raiders —- Spread: Jaguars (+6.0)

The Jaguars looked historically bad. Gabbert is out (apparently with an injury) and Henne is in. Henne produced decent numbers last year while filling in for Gabbert. I like Maurice Jones-Drew this week against a bad Raiders defense, but it’s hard to expect much from the Jags’ offense. The Raiders looked surprisingly decent against the Colts in Indy on Sunday. Until the final drive where they turned the ball over, the Raiders looked serviceable. I like the Raiders here because of the elusiveness of Terrelle Pryor, but with Henne under center I don’t like them by more than 6, but I might change my take on this game.

Broncos (-5.0) @ Giants – Money Line: Giants —- Money Line: Giants (+5.0)

The Broncos looked scary on Opening Night as Peyton tossed seven touchdowns at Mile High. Their defense, even without Von Miller and Champ Bailey looked pretty solid against the defending champs. I am worried about what the Broncos are capable of this year in a division with zero defense. The Patriots record of points scored and Tom Brady’s touchdown record have been warned. The G-Men. Where to start? Six turnovers doomed the Giants on Sunday night and no team could recover from that. Except, the Giants almost had the game won before the last turnover. The defense looked good and held Dez Bryant to two catches. If David Wilson can fix himself and the line can protect Eli, the Giants could surprise people here with a win against Big Brother. These are the games the Giants always step up and win.

49ers @ Seahawks (-3.0) – Money Line: Seahawks —- Money Line: Seahawks (-3.0)

Could be one of the games of the year. The 49ers took down the Packers using Anquan Boldin last week at Candlestick. Kaepernick proved yet again he can toss the ball around with the best of them. The Niners defense, even giving up 28 points still looked like a bunch of studs. The Seahawks looked jet-lagged in Carolina and eeked out a 12-7 win. These are probably the two best teams in the NFL and they play in the same division. I can’t wait to sit down and watch this outright brawl as this rivalry has become grounded in their hatred and their physical play. I like the Seahawks at home. Remember last year’s game?

MONDAY

Steelers @ Bengals (-7.0) – Money Line: Bengals —- Money Line: Bengals (-7.0)

The Steelers’ offense looked as bad as the Jaguars’ did. Big Ben can’t stand in the pocket for more than four seconds and his receivers, maybe excluding Antonio Brown, are a bunch of B-listers and below. He will continue to struggle without his safety blanket in Heath Miller. The defense looked more fresh against the bad Titans’ offense, but they will truly be tested against a young Bengals offense. The Bengals lost a heart-breaker to the Bears last weekend in Soldier Field. The defense wasn’t able to get to Jay Cutler which is puzzling considering the front seven this team has. The defense and the offense are both solid units making this Bengals team my favorite to still take home the AFC North. This will be a physical game, but I like the Bengals even with the big spread.

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UPSET SPECIAL

My Upset Alerts for this week fall on the BroncosLions , Chiefs, Falcons and Panthers. All of these teams are favorites, three of which are on the road. Keep an eye on these games ladies and ‘gents.

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SURVIVOR POOL

So last week I actually took the Colts and survived by the hairs on my chin (there are none right now). For this week the teams I like, depending on who you have chosen are:

  • PATRIOTS
  • RAVENS
  • COLTS
  • TEXANS
  • EAGLES

Good luck this week to all!

Week 1: Here We Go … Football!!! And It’s on Your Phone!

We are back … with a little bit of a change this year. This year I will be picking money line wins as well as picking with the spreads according to ESPN.com and see how good we really are here at Sports Gone HAM. The NFL off-season was torturous and filled with headlines, many for the wrong reasons, I’m looking at you Aaron Hernandez. We enjoyed a great season last season so let’s all hope for a continuation of last year’s success.

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THURSDAY

Broncos @ Ravens –  Money Line: Broncos  Spread: Ravens (+7.5)

Look for the revenge factor to kick in. Both defenses have huge changes with no Von Miller, Elvis Dumervil and Champ Bailey for the Broncos; while the Ravens have lost Danell Ellerbe, Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. Peyton Manning has a new play toy in Wes Welker and it’ll only help.

SUNDAY

Patriots @ Bills – Money Line: Patriots — Spread: Patriots (-11.0)

EJ Manuel gets his first NFL start against a defense that would let up a ton of points to a veteran quarterback, but he’s banged up and will have to try and keep up with Tom Brady. Brady’s offense is completely revamped and even the parts that aren’t (Gronk) are banged up. Look for Brady to put up pre-Moss and Welker numbers this year at least until Gronk is 100%. The Bills could make a playoff run in a weak AFC East if Manuel plays like last year’s rookies and Spiller emerges as a top 5 running back. Pats easy here.

Bengals @ Bears – Money Line: Bears —- Spread: Bengals (-3.0)

Toss-Up! I will be picking the Bengals to win the AFC North. There is a lot of talent on this team, but it will all rest on Andy Dalton’s shoulders (see Joe Flacco). The defense is star-studded and have added a true leader and enforce in James Harrison. The Bears lost their true leader on defense in Brian Urlacher, but gained something on offense in Martellus Bennett. The Bears also have a new head coach, whom is offensive minded in Marc Trestman and their fate will rely on whichever Jay Cutler appears every game.

Dolphins @ Browns – Money Line: Browns —- Spread: Browns (-1.0)

I think the Browns are going to be competitive this year and one reason is their defense. Their defense has become much improved and they also have a new head coach. Their most talented receiver is suspended for the first two games, but Jordan Cameron is coming on like a freight train right now and if Weeden can put it where these two guys can catch it, they could surprise some people. Let’s not forget Trent Richardson who runs harder than most. The Dolphins could also be sneaky good with the acquisition of Mike Wallace as long as he runs his routes and builds a rapport with Tannehill. If Tannehill comes along as many say he appears to be the Dolphins could finish second in the AFC East.

Raiders @ Colts – Money Line: Colts —- Spread: Colts (-10.5)

Andrew Luck is going to have a big year and now he has a real running back in Ahmad Bradshaw, assuming he stays healthy. On the other side we have the Raiders, yikes. Most people can’t name anyone besides Darren McFadden on the Raiders and that never spells well for a team. Terrelle Pryor will the start over weak-armed Matt Flynn, but he has almost no weapons in this offense. The Raiders seam to be on board the “Clowney Train”.

Vikings @ Lions – Money Line: Lions —- Spread: Vikings (+5.0)

Overachievers of 2013 vs. Underachievers of 2013. The Vikings will go as “All-Day Peterson” goes. If he can reach anywhere near his production level last year, Christian Ponder and his revamped receiving corps (looks good too) will have an easier time keeping up with teams. The Lions were the biggest disappointment of last season with the talent on their team. One of the most fierce front four will hound quarterbacks again this season, but the secondary is questionable. If Stafford can stay healthy he has a new toy in Reggie Bush who is still as dangerous as anyone in the open field.

Falcons @ Saints – Money Line: Saints—- Spread: Falcons (+3.0)

Sean Payton is back and I think he should have gotten a few votes for Coach of the Year last year. This offense will be running on all cylinders with him back and a healthy Jimmy Graham. However they still look awful on defense and that doesn’t bode well against a team that has added Steven Jackson to it now. Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Roddy White, Tony Gonzalez and now Steven Jackson, good luck Rob Ryan. No Asante Samuel and a banged up Roddy … that spells trouble trying to keep up with the Saints offense.

Buccaneers @ Jets – Money Line: Buccaneers —- Spread: Buccaneers (-3.5)

The Bucs didn’t add much on offense and their tight end position is ugly, but they have talent with Freeman, Jackson, Williams and Dougie. Their defense just snagged the Jets best defensive player through trade and are easily the best in their division and will be a solid squad. The Jets are a mess and Geno Smith will draw the start with little talent around him behind the same offensive line, probably worst, than Mark Sanchez was ducking behind last year. Rex Ryan’s last year how will they do. Everyone says they’re aboard the “Clowney Train”.

Titans @ Steelers – Money Line: Steelers —- Spread: Titans (+7.5)

To me the only thing that can save the Steelers this year is their defense, which has only gotten older. They drafted Le’veon Bell to keep their running game moving and keep that run first mentality going, but he is injured and that will rest on the backup Isaac Redman for now. Big Ben lost his favorite receiver in Mike Wallace and Heath Miller is also injured. The Titans are another team possibly boarding that “Clowney Train”. Chris Johnson has an improved line to run behind now, that could be dangerous for the rest of the league, but Jake Locker needs to take a step forward this year.

Seahawks @ Panthers – Money Line: Seahawks —- Spread: Seahawks (-3.5)

The Seahawks have talent all around on both sides even after Percy Harvin went down with a serious hip injury. Lots of experts are expecting big things from Russell Wilson this year after he shocked the world with his performance last season. Cam Newton took a step back last season with a ton of mistakes, but it appears they are trying to line him up under center much more this season, meaning we will get to see how much of a pure passer he really is. Jonathan Stewart is on the PUP list, which only hurts the offense, but the young linebacker core hopes to carry this defense.

Chiefs @ Jaguars – Money Line: Chiefs —- Spread: Jaguars (+4.0)

Andy Reid has a new job in Kansas City and so does Alex Smith. The only talent around him is Jamaal Charles and Dwayne Bowe, but if you look at Brian Westbrook and LeSean McCoy careers, Jamaal Charles could be in for a big year under Andy Reid. The defense might be at the middle of the pack at best. The Jaguars have some talent, just not at the most important position, quarterback. Gabbert is hurt even though he was named the starter and now Chad Henne will be put into action. The defense won’t look much better than the offense, but MJD has carried the load before.

Cardinals @ Rams – Money Line: Rams —- Spread: Cardinals (+4.5)

Both of the teams are sleepers for the NFC Playoffs, the only problem is the division they play in. Bruce Arians has taken over in the desert and has a quarterback who can throw it around the yard in Carson Palmer who had over 4,000 yards last year with the Raiders. Rashard Mendenhall has been added, but they pray he can stay healthy to put a little balance in Arians’ typically unbalanced offense. The Rams have talent everywhere and are sneaky good as long as Sam Bradford can stay healthy and Daryl Richardson can replace Steven Jackson to a certain extent.

Packers @ 49ers – Money Line: 49ers —- Spread: 49ers (-4.5)

Rematch of last season’s eye opener and then the playoff eye opener. The Packers defense didn’t get any better and their offensive line got worse because of injuries. Aaron Rodgers lost Greg Jennings, but gained Eddie Lacy, but sans the Giants the run game never worked against the 49ers last season. The Niners lost Michael Crabtree, but with a full offseason under his belt Colin Kaepernick could be improved. The Niners acquired an aging Anquan Boldin, but the rapport with Vernon Davis is apparently getting better.

Giants @ Cowboys – Money Line: Giants —- Spread: Giants (+3.0)

The Giants are 4-0 in Cowboy Stadium and I hate picking against Big Blue. The line is banged up and as usual so is the defense. David Wilson is receiving a lot of pressure without Andre Brown and Eli will have it all on his shoulders again. Tony Romo has the same talent around him on offense but maybe a healthy DeMarco Murray. It will ride on Tony Romo’s mistakes and how he lives up to his new big contract. He always seems to make the mistakes when most important and the Giants have the ‘Boys number right now.

MONDAY

Eagles @ Redskins – Money Line: Redskins —- Spread: Eagles (+3.0)

Vick vs RGIII. This will be exciting as hell with two meddling defenses and the implementation of a new system in Philly. Chip Kelly is here with his Oregon system, but without the Eagles best receiver it’ll be a tough go this year. RGIII is coming off an ACL Tear and Ron Jaworski has said he doesn’t look the same when stepping up and throwing. This is the biggest tough up of the week.

Texans @ Chargers – Money Line: Texans —- Spread: Texans (+3.5)

The Texans keep looking like the best team in the regular season and then getting kicked out of the playoffs while looking like a team that doesn’t belong. Arian Foster is healthy and Ben Tate seems appear to have a breakout season. The defense might be improved with the addition of Ed Reed if he can get healthy along with Brian Cushing. The Chargers are a mess. Rivers looks like his arm is depleted and their run game is confusing. Their defense might be able to keep them in some games, but their weapons on offense don’t instill any fear.

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UPSET ALERT 

I am putting the Broncos on Upset Alert … Deja Vu?? The Cowboys, the Bears and the Saints have also been warned.

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SURVIVOR POOL PICK

This weeks top 3 picks are: Patriots, Colts and Texans.

Check back for this week’s recap!

Thursday Night Football Preview

The NFL regular season kicks off Thursday, September 6 at 8:30 with the Ravens heading to Denver to take on the Broncos in a rematch between two AFC heavyweights.

WOOO HOOO for Fantasy football being back!!!! That’s all I really care about anymore as a Jets fan. Now, what is going to make this game interesting is the star studded talent on the offensive side of the ball for Denver. The Broncos with Peyton Manning and his 12 disciples (Wes Welker, Eric Decker, Demaryius Thomas, Knowshown Moreno, Ronnie Hillman, Montee Ball, Jacob Tamme, Julius Thomas, Ryan Clady, Adam Gase, John Elway, Jesus Christ, and Manny Ramirez (not that Manny Ramirez) are going to give the Raven’s defense a headache. Peyton will and has picked apart every defense in this league and Baltimore is no exception especially after the off-season where they saw two veteran and emotional leaders in Ray Lewis and Ed Reed depart from the team.  To go along with losing Lewis and Reed the Ravens lost key linebackers Dannell Ellerbe and Paul Kruger to free agency, but they brought in Elvis Dumervil and Chris Canty to bolster up an already Pro Bowl studded line with Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata.  It’s going to be interesting to see how the Broncos offensive line deals with the Ravens defensive front seven specifically in the run game. Back to the Denver offense.

Wes Welker and Peyton Manning are going to take over this game.  I can’t imagine the Ravens putting LaDarius Webb on Wes Welker all game, Webb is going to have to take care of Demaryius Thomas on the outside.  That leaves Jimmy Smith covering Welker in the slot and that is going to be bad for the Ravens D.  Jimmy Smith doesn’t have a chance covering Welker in the slot and with Manning throwing the ball Smith really doesn’t have any chance at slowing him down.  Smith’s head will be spinning by the end of this game.

What I will be paying attention on the Broncos offense is the running back situation.  Adam Gase who is Denver’s offensive coordinator has said that the Broncos will use a running back by committee approach in their offense.  Montee Ball, Ronnie Hillman and Knowshown Moreno are the three backs that will make up Peyton Manning’s backfield and the playing time that they will get will be based on their production start the regular season.  I’m looking at this running back committee approach extra close to figure out which back will have the most productive play behind Manning in this first game.  The cream will rise to the top.  By the end of the Broncos first game I think the back that will stay at the bottom is Montee Ball.  Ball is a rookie and was a great runner in college and showed that he is a dynamic back out of the back field but it’s going to take a some time for him to warm up to NFL defenses.  Knowshown Moreno won’t rise all the way to the top but he will definitely be hovering around it.  Moreno reminds me of Joseph Addai when he played in Indianapolis with Manning.  Moreno is the best pass protector of the three backs but he’s not great by any means.  He can run between the tackles and catch a ball out out the backfield.  Moreno will be in for a lot of pass protection and that also takes time away from Ball.  The Denver back that will be the cream going into week two is Ronnie Hillman.  I believe in Ronnie Hillman.

I think that Hillman is the back that Peyton trusts the most.  Hillman learned a lot in his rookie season and with that Hillman has been able practice the hiccups in his game with an even better team this year.  I may be completely wrong but in my defense I’ve never claimed to have read the future.  Just a gut feeling.

Now onto what we’ll be seeing on the Baltimore offense. A couple of changes here, wide receiver Anquan Boldin went over to the 49ers, tight end Dennis Pitta is done for much of the year with a hip injury and the only other significant loss on offense was center Matt Birk.  Joe Flacco will have speedster Torrey Smith on the outside to work with and from there, progress together over the past two seasons, things are looking up for this connection.  Flacco can launch the deep ball and isn’t afraid to.  Smith is deceptively fast and his quickness compliments his size and speed. Let’s add in the fact that these guys have a great trust in each other and we get a thunderous combination.  I’m real high on Torrey Smith to have a breakout year this season.  Ray Rice will still be vacating the backfield for the Ravens and will share some time but not much with Bernard Pierce.  I’ve heard that Rice may be flanked out to the slot at some point this season to see what havoc he could cause there.  Rice’s size has always amazed me.  Rice is about 5 foot 7 inches and has always played bigger no matter the level.  I had friends on the defensive line in high school that were twice as big as me tell me that trying to tackle Rice is like tackling a chain chomp.  Rough.

Flacco will have to deal with the Denver pass rush that will be without Von Miller but is still a pretty damn good pass rush.  Second year defensive end Derek Wolfe and veteran Robert Ayers will be gunning for Flacco’s head all night.  I’d expect them to get at least three sacks between the two of them for the night.  Champ won’t be able to take care of Torrey Smith on the outside because of his injury but they have Dominque Rodgers Cromartie to put on Smith expect for some fire works as Rodgers-Cromartie has been known to get burned by quick receivers in his past.

Should be a great game to start the 2013 regular season.  All that matters is that football is back!!!!!!!!