Wednesday, September 9, 2009

NFL 2009: Week 1 Picks

Here are my picks for week 1. This week I had to post it early because of the season kick-off game on Thursday. So some of my picks for the weekend game may be off because of the lack of injury reports as of now. Moreover, in the NFL, the true strengths and make-up of team will be known only after they play a couple of weeks of meaningful football. Still, I'll get the ball rolling:

Titans at Steelers:
I think it is a toss up. I pick the Steelers as they are at home. An interesting facade to the game is the terrible towel incident of last season, when Keith Bullock and a couple of other Titans stomped on the terrible towel in front of all those Steelers fans. Hope to see an extra physical game because of the sub-plot.
My pick: Steelers

Dolphins at Falcons:
Arguably, the two most surprising teams of last season are at it in Week 1. I think the Falcons have the edge here mainly because of the potentially better QB play of Matt Ryan.
My pick: Falcons

Broncos at Bengals:
This is a tough one to call.... for all the wrong reasons. Both these teams will be trying to get out of the bracket of bottom feeders this season. The upside being Bengals have Carson Palmer at the helm and Josh McDaniels is bringing his successful offensive system from the Patriots to the Broncos. Kyle Orton may be questionable for the game because of his finger injury.
My pick: Bengals

Vikings at Browns:
Brett Favre's debut with the Vikings. I am sure most of the country is going to tune into this one. Love him or hate him ..... Favre makes people watch football. And he opens their season against the lowly Browns.
My pick: Vikings

Jaguars at Colts:
If at all the Colts are gonna stumble, I predict it is this year. And when I say stumble, its just not making the playoffs (they still may end up with a winning record). Peyton has to work his offense under a new head coach and the undersized (yet speedy) Colts defense is always a suspect factor until we actually see them play. The Jaguars would love to bounce back after a losing season last year.
My pick: Jaguars (upset special 1)

Lions at Saints:
Drew Brees vs Lions D. Enough said.
My pick: Saints

Cowboys at Buccaneers:
I am guessing the Cowboys are gonna start on the fast lane as they have the last few years. It is only towards the end that they falter. The Bucs have a new head coach and a new Offensive Coordinator (only days into the job)
My pick: Cowboys

Eagles at Panthers:
No Vick for the first 2 weeks. So Donovan McNaab can play at peace without looking over his shoulders. Jake Delhomme is probably playing for his career with the Panthers this year.
My pick: Eagles

Chiefs at Ravens:
Todd Haley brings his pass-based offense to the Chiefs from the Super bowl runner ups of last year. But Matt Cassel is probably going to miss a week or two. Back to the Croyle-Thigpen days to kick off their season? And I think Joe "the unflappable" Flacco will dodge his sophomore slump to carry the Ravens on offense this year.
My pick: Ravens

Jets at Texans:
The Jets are gonna have a scathing defense that plays as physical as possible under Rex Ryan. But they probably can't go too far with a rookie QB, Mark Sanchez, who started only a year in college, albeit it was at USC. On the other hand, the Texans finally seem to have a team good enough to post a winning season. the caveat being the health of Matt Schaub.
My pick: Texans

Redskins at Giants:
The Giants will walk all over the anaemic Redskins offense. And Eli will try to prove that he is worth that monster contract he signed. No Plexico.... No problemo!!
My pick: Giants

49ers at Cardinals:
This matchup inthe NFC west has always been close the last couple of years in spite of the fact that the 49ers were awful. Now that they are on their way up under Mike Singletary, I predict an upset here. And the Cardinals are going to have that super bowl runner-up hangover that has haunted many a teams.
My pick: 49ers (upset special 2)

Rams at Seahawks:
The Seahawks finally have their QB Matt Hasselback healthy. They finally have their receivers healthy (no more playing with receivers picked up from the streets because receivers no.1 to no.5 are injured at the same time like last year). Saying that the Rams are rebuilding is an understatement. I challenge anyone to name a Rams player not named Stephen Jackson.
My pick: Seahawks

Bills at Patriots:
Brady is let the fireworks at Foxboro begin. The Bills may start off with a loss, but I have high hopes for the Stanford kid Trent Edwards, now that he has TO to stretch the field. Not happening this week though.
My pick: Patriots

Chargers at Raiders:
The Chargers are loaded with players to make a strong push for a championship, but their window is closing this may be their last legit chance for a shot. They hope they don't dig themselves a hole off the gates like last season. The Raiders are a whole different kind. Nobody knows what happens in the black hole. But I like a coach who is ready to get down and dirty leaving behind black eyes (literally).
My pick: Chargers

Bears at Packers:
Now for my game of the week. The typical slug fest that it used to be is about to turn into some areal showcase with Jay Cutler for the Bears and Aaron Rodgers in a pass friendly Packers offense. Do I need to mention this is the oldest .....oldest period..... rivalry in football. I am predicting it takes Cutler a few more weeks to get used to his new offense and teammates, while Aaron has a field day against the aging Bears D.
My pick: Packers (of course)

Season Score: 0-0
Last Week: n/a

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