NFL Predictions – Week 1

Back to where we left off last year…a whole bunch of guessin’ about a whole bunch of nothin’. With the 2006 season, the NFL Draft and 1 game already in the books, it’s time to roll out the heavy artillery.

NFL Lines For Week 1 – NFL Football Line Week One
NFL Game Lines 9/9 – 9/10, 2007

Date & Time Favorite Line Underdog Total
9/9 1:00 ET At Houston -3 Kansas City 37.5
9/9 1:00 ET Denver -3 At Buffalo 37
9/9 1:00 ET Pittsburgh -5 At Cleveland 36.5
9/9 1:00 ET At Jacksonville -7 Tennessee 38
9/9 1:00 ET At St. Louis -1 Carolina 42.5
9/9 1:00 ET Philadelphia -3 At Green Bay 42.5
9/9 1:00 ET At Minnesota -3 Atlanta 36
9/9 1:00 ET At Washington -3 Miami 34.5
9/9 1:00 ET New England -6.5 At NY Jets 41
9/9 4:15 ET At Seattle -6 Tampa Bay 41
9/9 4:15 ET At San Diego -6 Chicago 42.5
9/9 4:15 ET At Oakland -2.5 Detroit 39.5
9/9 8:15 ET At Dallas -6 NY Giants 44

Monday Night Football Line

         
9/10 7:00 ET At Cincinnati -2.5 Baltimore 40.5
9/10 10:15 ET At San Francisco -3 Arizona 45

I went with the Colts on Thursday night. I have not paid attention to any team this pre-season, not even the Steelers. These predictions will not even fairly include roster changes and draft day additions to most teams until I can get up to speed on many of the changes which have occurred over the past few months. Given that, the twins and the time, I’ll be quick.

I guess I’m a bit surprised the Texans are favored over the Chiefs. The Chiefs did make the playoffs. Damon Huard performed admirably in the majority of his games. They added a second LSU wide receiver in Dwayne Boye to a mediocre corps which includes Eddie Kennison and Oregon’s Samie Parker. The Chiefs defense is still the Chiefs defense. The game is in Houston and the Texans added Matt Schaub and Ahman Green. Houston Texans 23, Kansas City Chiefs 21. Damn, I guess I’m picking the Chiefs to cover AND taking the over. It just comes out that way.

The Broncos open the season against the Bills in Buffalo. I wish I could go to that game. The Bills stadium is about as tight and cozy as an NFL stadium can get. You feel like you’re right on top of the action. More importantly than that, it would be an opportunity to see Champ Bailey go head to head against Lee Evans. You can only see that matchup in person. The networks will capture Bailey vs. JP Losman. It’s just the nature of the beast. Bailey has a huge edge over Losman – but not so much over Evans. If JP can make a couple of excellent throws, Lee can take it to the house even against Bailey. I really love the way his game has emerged. Also, since I didn’t get Marshawn Lynch in my fantasy draft, I can say how much I like him. I believe Lynch has all the tools to become an elite back in the league. I like his speed, COD skills, hands and power. I also like that he makes cuts off two feet. I don’t know how stout the Broncos are and neither does Vegas since they’re only 3 point favorites. I’ll take the Bills in a mild shocker. Buffalo Bills 17, Denver Broncos 13.

Pittsburgh Steelers 31, Cleveland Browns 3. This game will probably be much closer than this, but I won’t be watching my boys today – so I don’t wanna talk about it.

Showtime travels to Jacksonville. Vince Young leads the Titans into Jacksonville in the opener. The Titans finished last season on a roll. Can anyone in the state of Tennessee run the ball other than Vince? I don’t think so – and definitely not against Henderson and Stroud. I like Fragile Freddie to start strong and MJD to finish strong. Jacksonville Jaguars 28, Tennessee Titans 17.

Everyone thought Carolina would do serious damage last year. They were terrible. That was one of the few games I was concerned about on the Steelers schedule before Ben’s accident. Of course, every game was a concern AFTER his accident. By the time the Steelers went to Carolina, the fat lady was on her fifth cocktail. The Panthers have to bounce back. Don’t they? Well, sure. Eventually…but not against Stephen Jackson and Torry Holt. If I were Dan Morgan, I’d lay low and avoid the big dude with the #39 on his back. St. Louis Rams 38, Carolina Panthers 35. I agree with Vegas that this could one of the higher scoring games of the day. If Delhomme brings it, the Panthers could actually answers the Rams invitation to a shootout. I like Jake and Bulger to come out firing.

I wonder if Donovan McNabb has been dying to play the Packers ever since that ignominious comment about how the Eagles would be undefeated if Favre were their quarterback. I wonder if Javon Walker wishes Favre were more like McNabb when it came to advocating for pay raises for teammates. I wonder if Favre wishes he’d just shut his pie hole during those negotiations. In any event, retirement is coming soon. Brandon Jackson is here and now. I like Andy Reid to do well in this homecoming and have his boys prepared. They don’t him to be embarrassed. He has enough to on his plate – what with the drugs and guns in the lives of his children. Kevin Curtis will score twice. Philadelphia Eagles 31, Green Bay Packers 14.

Minnesota has a bruising run defense. Pat and Kevin Williams are 700 pounds of death. The Falcons have Joey. News flash. The best QB to come out of Oregon was Dan Fouts. The next best QB hasn’t come out yet (Dennis Dixon, anyone?) Vikes in a romp. Minnesota 26, Atlanta 3. Taking the under…big time.

Dolphins – Foreskins. If the game were in Miami, I’d roll with the Dolphins. I wonder if Trent Green memorized all of Al Saunders’ playbook and shared it with the defense. I like Ladell Betts and Portis. I also have high hopes for Jason Campbell. It’s not a good thing when Jason Taylor knows what plays you’ll be running. ‘Skins by a skin. Washington Foreskins 16, Miami Dolphins 13.

The Patriots are almost touchdown favorites over the J-e-t-s, Jets! Jets! Jets! This could be the best game of the day. Man-Genius has already wiped the floor with Beli-butt. That was last year’s news. This year, the Patriots went out and bought a new offense and a new defense. On paper, the Pats look like solid money to win it all. I have to see the chemistry before I believe the Pats can beat these Jets. The Jets know what’s coming. New England Patriots 24, New York Jets 19. Sometimes, even when you know, you know you can’t do anything about it. The freight train that is takes out the little engine that could.

Seattle beats the Bucs. I don’t care about this game even though I am curious how Alexander rebounds in Seattle, whether or not Deion Branch and Matt Hasselbeck have new chemistry. I know Matt’s not used to throwing to receivers who can actually CATCH a ball, so there are no guarantees here. I’m also curious to see if Jeff Garcia can move the rock…and how Cadillac totes the rock. If Cadillac has his legs back, the Seahawks defense will get shredded for about 165. If not, the Bucs should be the one-dimensional (pass-pass-pass) subjects of a one-sided victory. I’m hedging. Seattle Seahawks 36, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 22.

I saw a headline which said the Bears were talking smack to the Chargers. Why?? Chicago! Zip it. Just because you went to the Super Bowl does not mean you’re better than the Chargers. The Chargers are bigger, stronger and faster on both sides of the ball. They have LaDainian. You have, er, um, Cedric “Don’t Call Me Ricky Dammit, I Cut My Locks” Benson. Unless you expect Devin Hester to score 3 times, please pipe down. San Diego Chargers 41, Chicago Bears 14.

I had a chuckle when I saw the NFL scheduled the Lions to play the Raiders. It’s like residing on one of those numbered planets on Star Trek. Oakland Raiders 13, Detroit Lions 10. I didn’t forget that the Raiders have a nice little defense. If they were playing in Detroit, I’d go with the Lions, but they’re doing this Alameda style.

The Team Turmoil Bowl…Dallas Cowboys 31, New York Giants 28. This is supposed to be the 2nd highest scoring game of the weekend. I don’t believe these teams will disappoint. It’s not the early 90’s, but it’s nice to see these franchises competitive.

Monday Night: I live Cincinnati and San Francisco.

Every once in awhile, a team suffers what I like to call a “Blueprint Loss.” The loss is so distinctive and complete that it provides a blueprint for other teams to follow. Two seasons ago, the San Diego Chargers delivered a Blueprint Loss to the Indianapolis Colts. The merciless disguised blitzes were mimicked by Dick LeBeau and company. Peyton Manning was overturned call away from one of his worse playoff cases ever. The Steelers went on to win the Super Bowl. Last year, late in the season, the Bengals delivered a Blueprint Loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Not everyone had the personnel to follow through – but the Colts did. Indy repeated the Bengals work of manhandling the Ravens at the point of attack through excellent offensive play and timely running plays. The Ravens, believe it or not, may already be past the point of return. Cincinnati Bengals 37, Baltimore Ravens 23.

I like the 49ers to win their division and do some things. Last year, my focal point was on the Saints. I thought they’d win 10 games. They did. I don’t know if the Niners can match that, but to get there they’ll need to beat Arizona twice. San Francisco 49ers 27, Arizona Cardinals 26.

And that’s all he wrote.

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The Texans had it much easier than I thought they would. I still believe the Chiefs will come around this year. I remember they were absolutely demolished by the Steelers last year. They rallied to make the playoffs.

The Bills should have won that game this afternoon. They’ll have to forget about it, but last second field goals are hard to put away. Marshawn Lynch is showing some thangs.

Steelers won big…and easier than I thought. 34-7 works for me every day of the week.

I’m not picking against Vince Young any more, period. I still think Chris Brown is a buster, but I have no explanation for his dominance today. Great job by the Titans. Maybe Jeff Fisher really deserves all the props he gets. Jack Del Rio is an idiot.

The offensive units of the Rams and Eagles laid eggs today against quality defenses. The same could be said of the Chargers, but the Bolts D was able to take the ball when they needed it most.

Congrats to Jason Campbell and the Washington Foreskins. Antwan Randle-El had himself a day.

What’s going on in Detroit? All those points are enough to take people’s minds off the Wolverines. NOT! Matt Millen needs points and excitement more than a hooker looking for frequent flyer miles. This is it, Matty. End of the line. Kitna and Bell are looking good. Shaun Rogers is a cut above.

The Cowboys look a step quicker than all of the Giants except for Plaxico Burress and Amani Toomer.

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PRAYERS FOR THE HEALTHY RECOVERY OF BUFFALO BILL AND FORMER MIAMI HURRICANE KEVIN EVERETT

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Kevin is hospitalized at the Millard Fillmore Gates Hospital.

Personal Info…from the Bills website: Attended Thomas Jefferson (Port Arthur, Tex.) High School (same as Janis Joplin), playing football for coach Al Celaya…Excelled as a defensive end and tight end during his prep career at one of Texas’s most tradition-rich high school programs…Gained more than 300 receiving yards each of his junior and senior seasons and posted 60 tackles and five quarterback sacks as a junior in 1999…Earned All-State honors in Class 5A as a senior in 2000 with 49 solo tackles, eight tackles for losses and six quarterback sacks…Also forced six fumbles, garnered four fumble recoveries, and blocked one kick…Concluded his career with Houston Chronicle Texas Top 100, Dallas Morning News Texas Top 100 and Texas Football Top 20 tight end honors. Liberal Arts Major…Son of Patricia Dugas.

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