Week 7: Unlucky Sevens?

The Broncos didn’t blow out the Jaguars and didn’t beat the spread. John Fox probably had money on that game, I mean honestly Peyton throws a pick-6 to the Jaguars? Don’t even get me started on the New York Football (but not really) Giants. Another above .500 week for the Money Line picks at 9-6, but this was my worst week for picks Against the Spread going 2-13. I don’t want to talk about it, but hey it happens.

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THURSDAY

png-2Seahawks @ Cardinalspng-10– MONEY LINE: Seahawks — SPREAD: Cardinals (+4.5)

The Seahawks didn’t look that great against the Titans and that was at home, that’s the second week in a row the Seahawks haven’t looked like the top dog, but this could be a bounce back week. I never really like them on the road to beat the spread. Percy Harvin may be only a couple of weeks away from contributing to this team, which would make them even more dangerous. The Cardinals turned the ball over too much to compete against the Niners and Carson Palmer has not excelled as many expected in Bruce Arians’ offense.

SUNDAY

png-8Patriots @ Jetsimages – MONEY LINE: Patriots — SPREAD: Jets (+4.0)

The Patriots pulled off a stunner with five seconds left in regulation at home against the Saints. Rob Ryan was disgusted when his defense gave up the last second touchdown to Brady & Co. Aqib Talib, Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola (SHOCKER!) won’t be playing Sunday most likely. The biggest hit is Talib, and as you may remember he intercepted Geno Smith twice when they played in Week Two. The Jets stayed at home after losing an ugly one to the Steelers. Smith seems to play better every other game and he won’t have to face Talib, Wilfork and Mayo now. I like the Jets with the points at home.

chargers Chargers @ Jaguars download – MONEY LINE: Chargers — SPREAD: Jaguars (+7.5)

The Chargers stopped Andrew Luck from scoring a touchdown on Monday Night and the defense looked great, or was it the Colts’ play calling? No matter Philip Rivers looks like he’s refined himself and although he might not be the quarterback he used to be he has definitely matured into a leader and he has a new play-toy in Keenan Allen. The Jags are awful, but played up to the Broncos on Sunday in Denver. They will win a game at some point, but I don’t know when, but be warned. Call me crazy but the Chargers played on Monday Night and it’s a West Coast team coming to the East Coast, I smell a loss.

texansTexans @ Chiefs  chiefs – MONEY LINE: Chiefs — SPREAD: Chiefs (-4.5)

The Texans have now lost Matt Schaub to a gruesome ankle injury, and the Houston fans cheered. Seriously??? The Texans were embarrassed by the Rams 38-13 and another pick-6 was thrown by a Texans’ quarterback. Arian Foster looks rejuvenated, but he will have a tough test against the Chiefs’ defense allowing only 10.8 points per game. Alex Smith is showing why he has the label of a game manager, but Jamaal Charles looks like a typical Andy Reid running back and that defense is fierce coming off a ten sack game against the Raiders. Chiefs at home against the lowly T.J. Yates.

png-14  Bengals @ Lions  png-13 – MONEY LINE: Lions — SPREAD: Lions (-2.5)

The Bengals were up on the Bills and turned off the heat leading to a Bills comeback, but took it in overtime. The Bengals have been great on the road the past few years, but teams always seem to have trouble in Buffalo. The Lions exploded as Brandon Weeden handed away the game. The offense is getting better as Calvin Johnson is getting healthy and Stafford found himself a tight end in Joseph Fauria (WHO????!!!). I want to like the Bengals because of their away success, but it’s hard with Calvin Johnson and Reggie Bush healthy.

png-9Bills @ Dolphins png-22 – MONEY LINE: Dolphins — SPREAD: Bills (+10.5)

The Bills almost pulled off a stunner at home against a good Bengals team. Now they head to warmer weather to play the Dolphins coming off their bye. The Dolphins are getting Cameron Wake back, but might not have Dannell Ellerbe. Ten points is a lot to give a 3-2 team in a division game. I know the Dolphins will win and I would play their defense in fantasy leagues. Dolphins here but I don’t know about that spread.

png-15  Bears @ Redskins png-19 – MONEY LINE: Bears— SPREAD: Bears (E)

The Bears took advantage of more Giants’ turnovers on Thursday night and have had eleven days off to prepare for the ‘Skins. The bears defense is opportunistic and the offense is clicking. The Redskins defense is miserable, but played up to the Cowboys’ offense on Sunday Night on the big stage, but I expect Cutler and Brandon Marshall to have a field day. RGIII had more runs that made him look like himself as he is starting to heal even more, but the play calling and the clock management is simply horrendous. Bears here, but I smell an upset.

png-1  Cowboys @ Eagles  png-18 – MONEY LINE: Cowboys— SPREAD: Cowboys (E)

I don’t know why I picked them. Probably because of the talent on offense and how Nick Foles fell back to earth last year after a couple of good games, but this one’s a toss-up between the top two teams in the NFC East. Dez Bryant will feast on this bad Eagles’ secondary this weekend.

rams Rams @ Panthers   png-3 – MONEY LINE: Panthers — SPREAD: Rams (+6.0)

The Rams took it to the Texans as Sam Bradford only had to throw for 116 yards last week, but tossed three touchdowns. The Rams were the beneficiaries of bad Matt Schaub play. The Panthers took it to the Vikings as Matt Cassel kept turning the ball over. The Panthers are bipolar so don’t be surprised if they lose this one easily.

png-6  Bucs @ Falcons  falcons – MONEY LINE: Falcons — SPREAD: Bucs (+7.0)

The Bucs have yet to win a game. Are they due? Maybe. Mike Glennon has begun his tenure as the Bucs starting quarterback and he looked decent against the Eagles and things won’t get harder against the Falcons bad defense. Matt Ryan comes out of his bye and will not have Julio Jones, Roddy White and Steven Jackson. His offensive line is banged up and he can’t rely on his defense to keep opponents from scoring, so he is going to lean heavily on Tony Gonzalez, who came back for one last run at a title. So much for that!

49ers  49ers @ Titans png-20 – MONEY LINE: 49ers — SPREAD: 49ers (-4.5)

The 49ers housed the Cardinals last week at Arrowhead as Colin Kaepernick realized who his best receiver is, his tight end, Vernon Davis. They connected for 180 yards and two touchdowns as Vernon Davis showed us why everyone is always so high on him. The defense will enjoy this game against Ryan Fitzpatrick. When will the Kenny Britt saga end? Nobody knows, but what could they get in return for a guy who will be a free agent next year anyway?

png-23 Browns @ Packers packers – MONEY LINE: Packers — SPREAD: Packers (-10.5)

The Browns look a lot different and more turnover-prone with Weeden under center. They will probably be playing from behind most of the time so Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron will keep producing numbers. The Packers lost Randall Cobb (out for 6-8 weeks) and James Jones both to injury, even though Jones might play this week. The Packers are going to rely more on Eddie Lacy now with those injuries, but he looks more than capable. Also one of the more underrated plays I have ever seen was Eddie Lacy going down before the end zone against the Ravens to waste the clock last week.

png-4 Ravens @ Steelers png-21– MONEY LINE: Ravens — SPREAD: Ravens (+1.5)

The Ravens looked ugly against the Packers last week, but are the better team here and are getting points. They need to get the ball in Ray Rices hands 20-25 times a game and we all know that. Their defensive front will be feasting on Big Ben all day. The Steelers got their first win against the bipolar Jets in MetLife Stadium. Big Ben needs to be kept upright and Leveon Bell needs to keep pushing the pile. This is the best rivalry in football right now even with the Steelers being 1-4.

broncos  Broncos @ Colts png-17 – MONEY LINE: Broncos — SPREAD: Colts (+7.0)

Bad win for the Broncos as they failed to embarrass the Jaguars at home. But Peyton Manning is coming back to Indy this week and Jim Irsay’s quotes have just made this more memorable. Andrew Luck is coming off one of his worst performances of his young career. Trent Richardson is not living up to that first round pick price they paid. This will be a great game to watch but a more memorable one for Peyton coming back “home”. Also Von Miller comes back, and his workouts were ridiculous while he waited for his suspension to end.

MONDAY

png-12 Vikings @ Giants png – MONEY LINE: Vikings — SPREAD: Vikings (+4.0)

Josh Freeman is starting after a week to get the playbook. Adrian Peterson will probably be running a muck in MetLife. The Giants are in shambles even coming off one of their best games of the year, a loss to the Bears. Brandon Jacobs looked like Jacobs circa 2007, but he hurt his hammy and they signed Peyton Hillis. Desperation moves. Reuben Randle and Eli Manning need to get on the same page otherwise the interceptions will keep mounting.

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UPSET ALERT

  • GIANTS
  • BRONCOS
  • PATRIOTS
  • PANTHERS
  • LIONS
  • CHARGERS

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SURVIVOR PICK

  • SEAHAWKS
  • PACKERS
  • 49ers
  • DOLPHINS
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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!

5 Things We Learned: The Refs are Back, Jack Edition!

Let’s get right into another wild week of lessons we learned in Week 4 of the NFL.

1) Your ‘favorite’ zebra-striped officials are back and better than the same as ever. One week removed from being screwed over by a blatantly obvious bad call by the refs on Monday Night Football, the Green Bay Packers found themselves benefitting from blatant bad calls in their games vs. New Orleans. A key fumble by Darren Sproles went the way of the Packers, despite replay showing otherwise. If refs aren’t getting calls right with replay, we’re in trouble going forward.

If you watched any games this weekend, compare the reactions the fans gave the refs at the beginning with the jeers they received towards the end. The officiating wasn’t top-notch, but I am willing to cut them slack…they were rusty.

2) Tony Romo is never going to turn the corner. Every season, all the experts tell us that this is Romo’s year to breakout and show the world that he is one of the elite quarterback’s in the NFL…and then he steps on the field and has a game like he did Monday night vs. Chicago. It’s the type of game that makes you scratch your head and wonder why Jerry Jones and Co. are actually considering giving an extension to this guy.

I’m sure Tony is a stand-up guy off the field, but on the field he’s a sit down guy, as in all he usually does is throw picks in crunch time and goes back to sitting down on the bench. Romo played in his Super Bowl opening night when Dallas took on the Giants. The Cowboys actually haven’t looked that good since Week 1 too.

3) If the New Orleans Saints keep this up, Sean Payton should be a unanimous choice for Coach of the Year. This is coming from the same school of thought that Peyton should’ve won MVP last season because of his team’s abysmal performance all season long. The Saints should be able to go out and win games in spite of the absence of their head coach. This should be firing them up if anything.

The complete opposite is occurring though. They are playing well enough to keep their fans hopes alive until the waning moments of the fourth quarter. The play-calling doesn’t appear to be different from the naked eye. Drew Brees is doing the same thing he did last season: Brees drops back, checks his reads, throws a strike to (insert Saints wide receiver here), and then repeat; it’s like the cycles on a washing machine. For a man that is making 40 million dollars this season, Brees should have his team in a complete “us against the world” mentality, thus using Bountygate as bulletin-board material. Instead, they look more “woe is me.”

4) A quarter of the way through this NFL season, the Arizona Cardinals look better than people expected. Regardless of whether or not the Cardinals beat the Rams this evening, they have looked solid throughout the first four weeks of the season.

No one can use the excuse that they haven’t played anybody good because it would be dishonest to say so. The Cardinals handed the New England Patriots a loss at Gillette, a feat not many teams have accomplished during the Brady/Belichick era. On top of that, they convincingly beat down the Philadelphia Eagles at home. Their other two wins have come against the Seattle Seahawks and the Miami Dolphins, the latter of which has one of the stingiest run defenses in this early season.

I’m not saying they are Super Bowl contenders just yet. Looking ahead, the Cardinals could very well be undefeated going into their match-up vs. San Francisco in three weeks. Not that NFL teams will admit to looking that far ahead, but I am sure the Cardinals understand that game will be their measuring stick for how where they rank amongst the class of the NFC.

5) The beef between Eagles running back LeSean McCoy and Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora is over…and by over I mean it was never really much of a ‘beef’ to begin with. Leave it to major sports outlets (mainly ESPN), to overhype something that never had much air under it.

Tupac and Biggie had a beef. Magic and Bird had a beef. Jay-Z and Nas had a beef. I could go on, but you get the point: those were actual feuds between two individuals who just did not get along. Osi and LeSean exchanged comments about each other through Twitter of all places. That alone is by no means an outlet that people will take you mildly serious on.

Kudos to them both though for providing the media, and both Giants and Eagles fans, entertainment to get us through the week leading up to the rivalry games these past two seasons.

#BookIt

-Brian Hartline is gone in every fantasy league you are in.

-Mr. Hartline is going to disappoint you big time this weekend coming off that monster game vs. a relatively sound Cardinals secondary. Cincy will be ready!

-Tebow will be starting for the Jets by/if not before Thanksgiving

-CJ2K is NOT back, and Sunday vs. Minnesota will show that his overdue 100-yard rushing performance was a fluke.

-RG3 WILL run away with the Rookie of the Year award, literally.

Week 4’s recipient of the McKayla is Not Impressed award goes to the New England Patriots. Let’s not run amuck declaring the Patriots offense is back and here to stay after they hung 52 points on the Buffalo Bills this past Sunday. The Jets hung 48 on them for crying out loud! If you didn’t expect the Patriots to go out and do the same thing, then I would question your football knowledge big time. The Bills are about as good on defense as the Phoenix Suns, and what is that saying? Absolutely nothing!

I reiterate, on behalf of NFL fans around the world: No one is impressed that the New England Patriots did something that was on par with an accomplishment that the New York Jets achieved in their season-opener vs. the Buffalo Bills.

With that said, if the Patriots come out and put on an offensive clinic against the Denver Broncos, then we can start saying the Patriots have found their offensive mojo once again.

Editor’s Update: The Cardinals may still have their San Francisco game circled, but they will not be undefeated going into it.

5 Things We Learned: Week 1 Edition

Happy Holidays football fans. The NFL regular season is back! And with a new season comes new expectations amongst the NFL’s 32 teams. So this season I am going to do something different from other sports sites. Each week I will be compiling two lists of information: On the one side, there will be 5 expectations going into the week of things one should anticipate seeing in one of the week’s matchups, and on the flip side, a list of 5 occurrences that the majority of football enthusiasts never saw coming.

Since Week 1 has technically come and gone, this week’s recap will be: 5 Things Week 1 Taught Us.

1) It was only Week 1, also known as ‘Overreaction Monday’ (kudos to Adam Schefter for coining that). Don’t be down if your team did not clutch it in the fourth quarter (Giants fans). Don’t walk into your office this week yelling the words ‘Jets,’ ‘Superbowl,’ and ‘bound’ in the same breath either. Ravens fans, we’re talking to you too! Don’t think your team is going to hang 40+ points again anytime soon. Yes, everyone knows and remembers Ray Lewis and the rest of the defense can carry an average offense to the Promised Land. The point is lots of teams have looked great in Week 1 and crashed the remaining 15 games, and the same can be said for teams who have lost their opener, then went on to win the Superbowl. The point is: Stay grounded until we reach October.

2) Robert Griffin, III is NOT going to have a season like Cam Newton. He will put up solid numbers and win games along the way. He will not accept comparisons to Newton, and after the game Vick had, he certainly will look at you with disdain if you ask him if certain aspects of his game resemble number 7 in Philadelphia. RG3 looked like a player worth the five draft picks that the Washington Redskins traded to acquire him this past April. Griffin posted a 92.3 quarterback rating, while going 19/26 with 320 passing yards and 2 touchdowns, one of which was an 88-yard score courtesy of Pierre Garcon.

Now, I know what your thinking: It was the Saints defense, and you are not impressed. It’s very easy to forget though, that Drew Brees and Co. are very difficult to beat, especially in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The noise level in that building has been very unfriendly to many opposing offenses over the years, but not to Griffin, III who appeared to be right at home.

I am not Newton bashing, but the best team the Carolina Panthers defeated last season were the Houston Texans sans Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson. Thus, the Redskins getting a season-opening win versus the New Orleans Bountygate Saints is that much more impressive for RG3 and company.

3) You should be ready to hit the panic button if you own Patriots players on your fantasy team other than Brady and Ridley. The Patriots may have found a running game, albeit against the Tennessee Titans, but you have to start somewhere I know it’s just Week 1, but look for sporadic production from all parties involved on the offense on a game-to-game basis. Gronkowski and Hernandez aren’t included as locks for huge production on a weekly basis because they can easily cancel each other out. So if you wasted a 2nd or 3rd round pick on Welker and Lloyd, you should start looking at your waiver wire. New England has too many weapons on offense for everyone to get consistent fantasy production out of.

4) The Ravens made a statement last night! Joe Flacco is demanding that the football world take him seriously as a Top 10 NFL Quarterback. And what better stage to make a statement then when everyone is watching on Monday Night Football! Everyone knows the Ravens have a solid running game with Ray Rice at the helm. The Ravens defense is still anchored by the ageless wonder Ray Lewis, with Ed Reed still ball-hawking in the secondary. If Flacco can develop even a glimpse of the same consistency he showed in the first half versus the Cincinnati Bengals, the Ravens might be early favorites to give the Patriots a run for their money on the offensive side of the ball in the AFC.

5) Going into the Jaguars/Vikings matchup, I strongly believed that the loser of that game would flirt with having a winless season. Well, the Jaguars lost (does that shock anyone?) and their schedule doesn’t get any easier.

Thankfully for their sake, they get 2 chances at the Indianapolis Colts, and matchup versus the Miami Dolphins towards the end of the season.

Wins will be hard to come by.

Honorable mention:

– A.P. is still A.P. and if he manages to put up around 80 rushing yards a game, and a touchdown or two, he would instantly become the steal of the draft since all the experts were doubting how much he would contribute in the first few games of the season.

– Tony Romo discovered a clutch gene, playing one of his best statistical games in his career. He and DeMarco Murray torched the Giants defense for more than 400 yards total offense, and the Cowboys offensive line neutralized the Giants well-known defensive line.

-Peyton Manning picked up where he left off, and that is going to make the AFC playoff picture a bit deeper this year as a result. Look for the Broncos to flirt with one of the top seeds in the AFC with Manning running that offense.

#BookIt

– Kevin Olgetree (Dallas Cowboys), Alfred Morris (Washington Redskins), and Stephen Hill (New York Jets) will be the most added fantasy players this week.

– Fred Jackson will be dropped in more than 50% of fantasy leagues because people realize that the Buffalo Bills were given a taste of what C.J. Spiller could do, against a solid defense nonetheless. Jackson may not have his starting job handed back to him when he returns.

– Julio Jones will have a better season than Roddy White; Week 1 was not a fluke.

– This is the year of the back up running back. Ask Matt Forte how he feels after seeing Michael Bush take away his goal line carries and touchdowns.

The McKayla is Not Impressed Award for Week 1 goes to the Philadelphia Eagles. No one is impressed that they beat the Browns, despite Michael Vick trying to throw the game away, literally. Vick gave the Browns plenty of chances to run away with the game, but in the end Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden one-upped in crunch time, giving the ball right back to the Eagles by way of an interception.

McKayla is not impressed by a Philadelphia 1 point victory over Cleveland.

 

– Jimmy Lips

SB XLVI: It’s more than a Game

The biggest game of the year is now 2 days away, and with each passing minute the anticipation grows stronger. From a casual perspective, this game may see like just another Super Bowl between teams you may have zero interest in because you do not live in the northeastern region of the U.S. However, true fans of the sport will tell you that this game is going to define careers and shake up the NFL for years to come.

Should Brady and Belichick pull out another Super Bowl win, it would be the duo’s 4th ring in 5 tries. This would undoubtedly grant Brady and Belichick keys to a higher penthouse suite than ones they were already living in. Brady would be leaving a room that he shared with Hall of Famer Troy Aikman, and moving in with Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana. A win on Sunday would elevate Brady from not just one of the greatest quarterbacks of the 21st Century, but to one of the greatest of all time (G.O.A.T.).

As for the mastermind that is Bill Belichick, he would receive an upgrade from bunking with the legendary Joe Gibbs, to being roommates with Pittsburgh Hall of Fame head coach Chuck Noll, the only man to win 4 Super Bowls in NFL History. Similar to Brady, this would establish Belichick as the G.O.A.T. as well.

Big Blue’s leading men, Coughlin and (Eli) Manning stand much to gain if they can once again pull off the upset versus the New England Patriots. Manning’s 2nd Super Bowl victory, in his 8th year as a starter, would certainly back up his claim from the beginning of the season when he stated he felt he was in the same Elite class as Tom Brady. Manning would leave a very crowded room of one and done Super Bowl champions such as Brad Johnson, Brett Favre, big brother Peyton and Trent Dilfer, for much preferred company with Hall of Famers Roger Staubach, Bart Starr, and John Elway. Doesn’t sound like bad company at all considering he would be 1 behind good ole Tom.

Sports experts say that a 2nd consecutive win versus Brady and Belichick would put Manning and Coughlin on the fast track to Canton, Ohio. While the Manning Hall of Fame bid is certainly up for debate, Coughlin’s certainly is unquestionable. With a win Sunday, he would be tied with Lombardi, and 1 behind his best friend Bill (Belichick). Also worth noting is that he would have coached a team to 2 Super Bowl victories having only played 1 home game in the process. Impressive is an understatement.

Whether you are a die-hard fan of these 2 teams, or someone who will only be watching for the commercials, this will be a game that you will forever remember as an outcome that changed the NFL all-time rankings lists going forward.

Jimmy Lips