NFL predictions for week one

Me too, but for different reasons. The Colts/Ravens game last season, a Sunday nighter, was IMO perhaps the best football game I saw last season. Only two teams last season figured out a way to stifle Manning, the Ravens and the Patriots, and they both did it the same way, essentially: lots and lots of motion pre-snap. See, Manning is used to doing his pre-snap adjustments and audibles and having the opposing defense trying to figure it out and react to him. He reads the defense and starts making adjustments (or not, it’s often just for show) as he looks for possible points of exploitation. At least, Nervous Nellie opposing defenses think so, so they flip out and start rambling all over the place, corners and LBs back off, and then Manning just hands it off like he was going to anyway - but, he got the LBs and CBs to back off, didn’t he? What the Ravens did first, and then the Patriots smartly copied in the playoffs, during the season was come out with their guys in motion first. You saw Ray Lewis barking position changes to match every audible Manning called. Man, and that game could have been the one that broke the single-season TD record, in Indy (it didn’t because Tony Dungy and Peyton Manning respect their opponents and didn’t try for a stupid 4th down TD pass). Every time the Colts had the ball, you were watching a game unlike many you’ve seen. The crowd was dead quiet so that Manning could make his audibles, you could hear Ray Lewis shouting his orders, his eyes locked on Manning. They kept them under wraps for most of the game, but the Ravens’ offense was just too anemic and the Ravens couldn’t manage to get inside Manning’s head the way the Patriots keep doing.

A triple-Biller! By “one,” what do you mean? Superbowl? Game? I don’t think he’s going to another Superbowl, honestly. Anyway, you do admit the reason the Cowboys roster has Patriots and Jets alums isn’t because of the QB, yeah?

yeah, another superbowl. I have to say I find it amusing to watch Dallas become Patriots south…except I wouldn’t want Bledsoe, Parcells or Glenn. Price seemed like a great WR in Buffalo, but he disapeared in Atlanta.

Colts vs. defense teams.- This is why Payton and Co. will not make it over the hump until they have a killer defense also. The Ravens, Pitt or Pats will stop him dead in his tracks on any given sunday.

He was playing with a QB that could actually pass (Bledsoe) and opposite a #1 receiver (Moulds). As much grief as Price has received, the fact remains that Vick simply is unable to get the ball to his receivers not named Crumpler.

Colts vs. defense teams.- This is why Payton and Co. will not make it over the hump until they have a killer defense also. The Ravens, Pitt or Pats will stop him dead in his tracks on any given sunday.

Depends on the conditions. If they’re playing in a dome, I think the Colts can take just about anyone that’s relying on decent offense and great defense. They have a harder time with track meets like when they had to go up against the Chiefs last year.

With Simon/Mathis/Freeney as their core DL, they can get massive pressure on opposing QBs and as long as they can take an early lead they’re literally make their offense their defense, and this should work. Where it fails is when someone starts running the ball down their throat.

BTW, they beat the Ravens last year and have almost beat the Pats 2 out of their last 3 matchups. It’s not like the Pats are coming in and crushing them, it always ends up getting pretty close (discounting the playoff game last year).

Well, he wasn’t all that great in Buffalo, either. He’s a slot guy, not a wideout - Jermaine Copeland was the wideout in Tennessee in college when they were both there, both benefiting off Manning’s QB skills. Then, he was split wide his first season in Atlanta, then they tried to put him back into the slot, but it might have been too late. Plus, he was expected to be the #1 guy in Atlanta (with no legit #3), instead of a solid #2 guy backing up an elite guy like Eric Moulds.

Any given Sunday aside, they’ll get stopped by those guys or any other club with a top-tier defense in the playoffs for sure. You just can’t make it through the playoffs without an elite defense. Now, Indy’s D wasn’t really as bad as its overall rank indicated - they were in the top 5 in critical categories like 3rd down stops and red zone D (much like New England’s defense, which typically places high in the all-important Takeaways and Turnover Margin categories). Skewing results are the fact that the Colts usually force high-yardage shootouts and take the lead early in the game. That, coupled with Dungy’s Cover-2 scheme, which allows for opponents to gain ground throughout a game, but prohibit big plays, often leads to opposing offenses getting some decent yardage off the Colts, the primary determinant in those overall defensive rankings. Note New England places higher for the same reason: their games are played much closer to the chest, and their defense is far more complex and imposing than Indy’s.

But, IMO, that still sort of averages out to better-than-average at best for the Colts. Hell, it wasn’t their fault they lost to New England in the post-season, anyway. They kept New England to 20 points. Few defenses can pull a win out if their offense only chalks up a fucking figgie for the whole game, however.

The raiders are going to win tonight. They are going to wipe the floor with the pats.

I.e. he was a flanker (Z), not a split end (X), which also means he was the #2 option. Don’t mean to be pedantic, but given that there are so many terms available (e.g. wideout often is used to describe both FL and SE, and a lot of times ‘slot’ is interpreted as #3 receiver a la Az-Hakim in his golden years).

Then, he was split wide his first season in Atlanta, then they tried to put him back into the slot, but it might have been too late.

“The slot” is technically the place between the OT and SE – do you mean they put him back out as a FL (off the line)?

Plus, he was expected to be the #1 guy in Atlanta (with no legit #3)

Possibly, although I think Finneran never got the cred he should have. I think a real QB with Price, Finneran, and Crumpler would have done okay. Hell, Tim Rattay would have done okay with that crew, they’re still better than the hodge podge in SF.

Few defenses can pull a win out if their offense only chalks up a fucking figgie for the whole game, however.

Thing about that game is that I think Manning did okay, but it seemed like the entire Colts D played scared. Receivers were dropping balls, they weren’t running hard, James had no getup-and-go, it was pretty sad to see.

Glad to see the Raiders win last night…:)
They had thier moments at first, but in the second half they were shut down.
interesting, and worrisome to see my Pats in a 4-3. Although having J.Green on the field more is not a bad thing. I guess it is a good way to fill the hole left by the two Teds, but the 4-3 is so much more limiting than the 3-4. We will see what interesting things Bill will come up with.
Brady and company looked good on Offense. Did he throw a pass to everyone except the O line last night? Not worried about the running game …yet…Sapp and Washington in the middle is a tough nut to crack in a running game.
Props to Randy Moss…i loathe the guy, but damn is he fun to watch.

Up until the point he decides not to actually play. Raiders fans… get used to him not trying like in the 2-point conversion near the end of the game.

— Alan

Rookie QB vs. Washington defense? Uhhh…I’ll take that challenge and call it Washington 13 Chicago 6[/quote]

Actual score: Washingto 9 Chicago 7

I wasn’t too far off =)

Rookie QB vs. Washington defense? Uhhh…I’ll take that challenge and call it Washington 13 Chicago 6[/quote]

Actual score: Washingto 9 Chicago 7

I wasn’t too far off =)[/quote]

True, but it wasn’t the rookie QB who held Chicago back. He was probably our best player on offense. :(

5-10, with one game left. And you’re already guaranteed to do better than my predictions in this week’s pool. All the games seem so obvious until they actually get played.

And the 49ers won!

5-10, with one game left. And you’re already guaranteed to do better than my predictions in this week’s pool. All the games seem so obvious until they actually get played.

And the 49ers won![/quote]

Yeah, I think I’m just going to keep my predictions to myself from now on. :oops:

I went 11-4 in my ESPN pick’em league (and 9-5 in a spread-pick league), not too bad; I actually rank higher against the average in the spread league than in the pick’em league. A decent week, I admit I got pretty lucky on some of 'em.

— Alan

I’m 10-5 (with Philly -1 tonight), so not an awful start. I did have both Miami and SF, which was fun.

I guess I’m going to go ahead and use this thread to discuss the Philly-Atlanta game. I feel like I’ll get yelled at if I make a new one.

So first of all, that ejection was bullshit. Some second stringer decides to walk up to a key player and smack him in the head before the game, and they both get ejected? Bullshit. And it may have cost us the game. Atlanta did the most damage to us with runs up the center by Dunn, but people don’t usually get away with that against us… because they get ripped in half by Trotter.

More points:

  • What the fuck, David Akers? You’re the second best kicker in the whole league, and I know they wouldn’t happen in a vacuum, man, but those two FG’s would have made it a very different game.

  • Along those lines, and I hate to say it because he’s my man, but McNabb wasn’t playing nearly his best tonight. He made some really nice passes, but he also blew some pretty key ones. I don’t think it was the injury, because he looked really, really sloppy immediately after that hit, and he straightened up after a little bit.

  • And hey, I guess we’re sticking with the policy of no McNabb runs, ever. Which is retarded on Reid’s part, because we managed to get to the NFC Championship three times based on the strength of his improvised runs, and some nice designed runs would make our offense exponentially better. I wish Reid understood that running is part of what makes Donovan a great QB.

  • I have no idea why the announcers kept saying what an awesome job whoever the fuck was guarding T.O. was doing. Nine catches and a hundred and seventeen yards… yeah, total shutout :roll: .

  • God damn, Westbrook had a great game, as always. No wonder he’s my favorite player. Note to Eagles office: sign that motherfucker, tonight.

  • I’m in love with the new Pinkston-free Eagles offense. Head over heels, really. I’d rather it didn’t take an injury to do it, but hey man, whatever gets the job done. Lewis should have been in for him anyway.

All in all, a really fun game to watch, but it really felt like we should’ve won it.

Dude, what the hell game did you watch? And can you get me a copy of it? Because I saw some of the most embarassing football I’ve seen in a long while. Neither team deserved to win, the only reason the Falcons won it is because they didn’t have any more time left to fuck it up. It was a battle of who sucked the least. Three turnovers? Some of those passes were horrendous. That toss to Westbrook in double coverage behind Donovan? W.T.F?

If I was any more of a football fan than I am I would have passed out due to embarrassment at the end of the game when one of the two idiot commentators pointed out that these are the two best teams in the NFC. How sad.

I’d argue that he’s the best if you include kickoffs in the equation.

Along those lines, and I hate to say it because he’s my man, but McNabb wasn’t playing nearly his best tonight.

I think he’s overrated, and he has a tendency to choke in big games. Sometimes he looks positively scatter armed and confused.

I wish Reid understood that running is part of what makes Donovan a great QB.

I think Reid does – remember he’s WCO and is thus sort of has the runs of Steve Young, Elway, Favre, etc. in his genetic heritage.

I have no idea why the announcers kept saying what an awesome job whoever the fuck was guarding T.O. was doing.

DeAngelo Hall is his name, and he’s a second year player and, sorry, he did a pretty damn good job. He was single covering TO and playing physical football in a way a lot of corners won’t. The last corner I saw play him that well was probably Chris McAlister last year (who is probably the best corner in the league IMO, even though Harrison owned him on a couple key plays the other night – being a cornerback is like being a sys admin, people only notice when you fuck up).

God damn, Westbrook had a great game, as always. No wonder he’s my favorite player. Note to Eagles office: sign that motherfucker, tonight.

He’s versatile, but he’s kind of like Edgerrin James/Marshall Faulk/Priest Holmes/LDT Lite – he’s just too damn small. Dynamic player, but can he hold up?

I think Reid is one of the best, most underrated coaches out there, but I wonder how well he’d do if they had a scouting office that didn’t suck. Imagine them with A.) a real power back and B.) some real, honest to God receivers. It’s a scary thought.

The next receiver taken after Freddie Mitchell was Reggie Wayne.

Mitchell - 90/1263 5 TDs
Wayne - 225/3159 23 TDs

The next receiver taken after Pinkston was Jerry Porter. Although, interestingly enough, Porter has very similar career stats to Pinkston, I think most people would consider Porter the better player.

Now, think about a team with TO, Wayne, and Porter playing. That could be what they had today if they had picked their receivers better.

Dude, what the hell game did you watch? And can you get me a copy of it? Because I saw some of the most embarassing football I’ve seen in a long while. Neither team deserved to win, the only reason the Falcons won it is because they didn’t have any more time left to fuck it up. It was a battle of who sucked the least. Three turnovers? Some of those passes were horrendous. That toss to Westbrook in double coverage behind Donovan? W.T.F?

If I was any more of a football fan than I am I would have passed out due to embarrassment at the end of the game when one of the two idiot commentators pointed out that these are the two best teams in the NFC. How sad.[/quote]

Jeez I didn’t think they were that bad - sloppy offenses coupled with good defenses means you will see some oddities. Once McNabb got injured I felt he was off for most of the night, with the occasional decent throw. The behind pass play was obviously designed that way - the problem was that either Mcnabb through way early or Mitchell didn’t quite realize what was going on.

McNabb and Owens were not connecting well - in fact, I hate to even say it, but it almost seemed like Owens was doing it intentionally. And laughing about it.

And the pre-game fight… ridiculous for the refs to eject both players for a pre-game tussle that wouldn’t even have gotten them tossed out in the actual game - it may not even have got them penalized, and if they did, they would have been offsetting penalties. Definite plus for Atlantla - I’ll lose one of my third-down nickelbacks any day of the week for your best linebacker.

Having both offenses go to a very conservative mode in the second half really didn’t help matters much. Tonight’s game doesn’t make me think any less that Vick is overrated - which he still is - or that I don’t hate Philly any more than I already do. And I’m glad they lost.

— Alan

When Vick was drafted I was saying he was going to be a bust. While clearly not a bust, he’s a liability when passing.

What kills me is when he finally throws a half-way decent pass everyone jumps and screams for joy and announcers yell “Gosh, he’s really matured, what a GREAT pocket passer!”

When Vick was drafted I was saying he was going to be a bust. While clearly not a bust, he’s a liability when passing.

What kills me is when he finally throws a half-way decent pass everyone jumps and screams for joy and announcers yell “Gosh, he’s really matured, what a GREAT pocket passer!”[/quote]

True words but you can’t fault Vick for that. At least ESPN didn’t televise the game. Their announcers can’t seem to say anything but superlatives about the current star on the camera. Do they even know the names of the offensive linemen?