The early games aren’t over just yet, but there are some interesting things going on.
The Cleveland Browns look like the team that just cemented the place of the AFC North as the toughest division in football. The Bengals are down this year, but they still have a quality team. I like the teams in this division more than I like the four squads in the AFC South.
I’ve been down on the Patriots for a long time now. They have a good record every year, but they also play in a division that is weak. If an evaluation of a division begins at the quarterback position, we know that the Jets and Dolphins have room to grow. The Bills are hapless. The Patriots have feasted on this division for years. Outside of the division, the Pats have been roughed up by 20+ points by the last two Super Bowl champions. With the departure of Randy Moss, some media types patted Bill Belichick on the back and lauded his genius. The proof: a 3-0 post-Moss record.
What the “geniuses” ignored is that Patriots scoring was down 8 points per game. Wes Welker’s numbers looked like he was back in Miami. And, perhaps most importantly, the Chargers (old version: Cam Cameron’s Ravens; new version: Norv Turner’s Chargers) are not on the agenda. The Patriots own both of those teams. After barely beating both SD versions (even after getting 4 turnovers from Norv’s version), New England scraped by the Vikings.
This team isn’t going anywhere. I’m watching the Jets self-destruct against the Lions. It’s not pretty — just like the play in the AFC East. The Lions are up 10 and running clock on the Jets. That’s just crazy…but they look an awful lot like the Titans with offensive weapons.
I’m wondering if Josh Freeman is going to pull off the unthinkable and beat the Falcons in Hot-lanta. That would be tough — especially without elite offensive weapons.
I picked the Chargers to beat the Texans. I think this is as good a week as any for them to start running the table. I just have no idea who is catching those passes that Philip Rivers is throwing. It’s going to be hard for some quarterbacks to complain about scrub wide receivers when Rivers is down to 3rd string guys from colleges halfway between Southwest Pass Catching State and Northeastern Route Running Community College.