A shocking ending that no one could have expected!
A shocking ending that no one could have expected!
September 19th – Thursday Night Game (8:25 PM ET)
Kansas City Chiefs at Philadelphia Eagles
Andrew – Philadelphia Eagles. I definitely think that the Chiefs have a shot, and given that their defense seems to be significantly improved, I feel as though this game could be lower scoring and closer than many people expect. However, if I had to pick the team that could most likely break it open, it would not be Alex Smith and the Chiefs. One more game though, and I may be convinced.
Greg – Philadelphia Eagles. I really think this game is a toss up. Reid coming back into town creates an emotional aspect for both teams. The chiefs will most certainly be playing up for their coach, but I don’t think they’ll be able to slow down this offense enough to win for Andy.
Genesis – Kansas City Chiefs. TALK ABOUT RACIST NAMES, AMIRIGHT?! This one is actually pretty tough to choose. With a 2-0 start, the Chiefs seem to be doing everything right – but Vick has thrown like 600+ yards, so clearly something’s working there. The key to this win is to stop the Eagles rush offense. If they do that, then the Chiefs win – but just barely.
September 22nd – Early Sunday Games (1:00 PM ET)
Green Bay Packers at Cincinnati Bengals
Andrew – Green Bay Packers. Short(ish) week for the Bengals, coming off a tough division game on Monday. Should be close per home field advantage, might even give a slight advantage to the Bengals, but again, in a jam, I feel like Green Bay has more weapons offensively and is competent enough defensively to win this on the road.
Greg – Green Bay Packers. Aaron Rodgers played out of his mind against the Redskins. He will not have that kind of game this week against a better defense, but it will still be enough to win. Throw in a Dalton turnover, and you have a Packers win.
Genesis – Green Bay Packers. They did WORK against the Skins last week. Rodgers won’t be putting up ridiculous yards like he did during that game because the Bengals have what people are calling “a defense.” He won’t throw for 800+ yards and I doubt their RB will get over 100 yards rushing again, but they’ll do enough on offensive work to get the win. But I see this as another close game.
Yaaaay football is back! And yeah, we didn’t post this last night, but I mean, who could’ve predicted Peyton throwing 7 TDs anyways?!
September 5th – Thursday Night Game (8:30 PM ET)
Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos
Andrew – Denver Broncos. This is a super tough game for the Ravens to open with on the road, plus it’s definitely a revenge game for that loss in the playoffs last year. I know that the Broncos lost Dumerville and are without Von Miller for 6 games, AND Champ Bailey isn’t going to be there… oh wait… uh so why aren’t the Ravens going to win? I’ll tell you why, because Peyton Manning is going to do what he does best, and that’s dissect defenses. The Broncos should be able to easily put up 30+ on the Ravens, and I just don’t see Ravens being able to match that kind of offensive firepower.
Greg – Denver Broncos. The Ravens come into this season a shell of what they were last year. So many people have left. That said, they will still be a decent team, but keep in mind before their Super Bowl run, Baltimore was debating firing coaches and questioning Flacco. I think the Broncos will win this one by at least 10. Hi Wes!
September 8th – Early Sunday Games (1:00 PM ET)
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills
Andrew – New England Patriots. I’ve been trying to think of a nice way of putting this, but I just don’t see a situation where New England loses this game. EJ Manuel and CJ Spiller will definitely cause some headaches for the Patriots defense, no doubt, but one or two mistakes (aka if the Patriots get too far ahead and force EJ Manuel to air it out a lot) and this game will be over.
Greg – New England Patriots. It seems the Bills and Pats always square off early in the season — and every year it’s Brady v some other quarterback. This time it’s an undrafted rookie. I expect the Patriots defense to be pretty strong this year, so hopefully this goes that way. Pats roll.
Thursday, September 13th
Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers 8:20 PM
Andrew – Green Bay. I’m pretty torn on this game – I feel like the Bears are going to be legit this year… but I still obviously have faith in the Packers despite their loss against the 49ers. If the Bears struggle in the beginning like they did against the Colts, the Packers won’t hesitate to close the door on this game. I’m going with the home team here, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bears pulled it out. Either way, I’m hoping for a close one.
Greg’s Pick: Green Bay. huge rivalry here, and while I agree Bears will be better this year, Packers win this round.
Sunday, September 16th
Kansas City Chiefs at Buffalo Bills 1:00 PM
Andrew – Buffalo Bills. Ok, sooo clearly the Bills didn’t live up to the hype that I had in my head, but they should be able to beat the Chiefs. If not… then damn… I really don’t know what to make of this team.
Greg’s Pick: Buffalo Bills. The Bills maybe need a game there to figure things out, I really don’t know the Chiefs, I think they’ll be better this year? but at home, Bills win.
Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 PM
Andrew – Cincinnati Bengals. Ok, I clearly gambled on the Bengals beating the Ravens on the road… I should have known better. The Browns at home though should be a good game for the Bengals to bounce back.
Greg’s Pick: Bengals. Yeah, the Browns almost beat the Eagles…because Vick threw 4 interceptions. I don’t see Dalton doing that this week as the Bengals win easily.
REST OF THE PICKS AFTER THE JUMP!
The first couple games of the seasons are generally pretty sloppy, teams are still figuring out their personnel and the players are still shaking off the rust… which in general make them pretty hard to predict… but FOOTBALL is back…so no excuses.
PS – Last year, for the regular season Andrew picked 165 correct, 87 incorrect, and 3 did not picks. Greg went 154 – 90 – and 10 did not picks. Just for your reference, the people that do this for lots of money – Golic: 161-95, Hoge: 162-93, Jaws: 155-85, Mort: 155-101, and Schefter: 158-98. In the post season Andrew went 6-5, and Greg went 5-6.
Wednesday, September 5th
Dallas Cowboys AT New York Giants (8:30 PM ET)
Andrew – New York Giants. I’m convinced that the Dallas Cowboys are about one or two good players away from being a really solid team, but I’ve seen this act before – the Redskins used to play it for years, and the much more likely thing is that the team will be perpetually average. Big D’s offense seems to be moving backwards, drama abounds, and losing makes everything worse – this could be a legit terrible year for Dallas fans. Those cryptic predictions aside, I think that the Dallas’s offensive line won’t give Tony Romo the time to effectively string together enough to pull out a win.
Greg – New York Giants. I wanted to go out and pick the Cowboys on this one. I really did. But then I actually thought about it. Cowboys, on the road, personnel issues, and in a night game…would be tough. I don’t think the Giants are actually much better this year, but they are better right now. We will see who is better when they meet again in Dallas.
mk mk mk mk mk that’s it for now folks…. we’re still in pre-season mode so give us a minute and we’ll be posting the rest of the picks along with our new and improved podcast very, very soon.
Indianapolis Colts at Chicago Bears
Andrew – Chicago Bears. This is a tough road game to start the season for Colts savoir Andrew Luck. While I feel like Luck significantly improves the Colts ability to score, the issue remains that they are one of the worst defenses in the league, with little hope of getting better this year as they convert to the 3-4 (even the Steelers were the worst in the league the first year they switched, then 13th, then top 5). It’ll be hard for them overcome the Bear’s defense, let alone slow down their explosive offense.
Philadelphia Eagles at Cleveland Browns
Andrew – Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles finished last year hot, hot, hot and did not lose any key members of their squad in the offseason. The Browns… are still the Browns… and while they probably won’t make it easy for the Eagles, I don’t see them opening their season with a win.
New England Patriots at Tennessee Titans
Andrew – New England. The big questions is here is – WTF is New England doing with all those tight ends? Wait no… the big question here is… does Jake Locker really give the Titans the best chance to win over Matt Hasselbeck? Hmm… noo, that’s not quite it either… oh here it is – is Chris Johnson going to come out and shit on the field like he did last year, or will he 2,000 yard back he used to be? While I don’t know if the Pats will make back to the Superbowl this year, I do know that they can put up big numbers when they want, and the Titans won’t be able to hang point for point.
Atlanta Falcons at Kansas City Chiefs
Andrew – Atlanta. Is it just me or did both of these teams fall off last year? In general, I feel like the Falcons are a well rounded team, maybe the Ravens of the South (and no not just because they’re also a bird), nothing flashy but consistently close to winning their divisions – which is good because both teams are in tough divisions. The same can’t be said for the Chiefs who generally race against the Dolphins to the bottom of the AFC East. Is this the year the Chiefs finally put it all together? My gut tells me “chicken sandwhich?”
Jacksonville Jaguars at Minnesota Vikings
Andrew – Minnesota? The battle of the inept starting QBs. Despite being overshadowed entirely by MJD failed hold out, Christian a’Ponder(ing) is the feel good story of the preseason – but don’t be fooled (John Beck anyone? Anyone!? Shanahan?), doing well in the preseason basically means you have figured out the most basic defensive packages… it does not mean you can play with the big boys. I anticipate the Viking’s defensive line will give Ponder plenty of trouble and if MJD doesn’t come into save the day (let alone play) this could be a long awful game, with the Vikings winnings with a field goal.
Washington at New Orleans 1:00 PM
Andrew – New Orleans. I’m torn on this game to be honest. Part of my wants to pick the Redskins, not because I’m a blind homer fan, but because the Redskins have significantly improved their offense and their defense during the offseason, which I don’t think a lot of analysts are taking into account when they think the Saints are going to march all over Washington. The other part of me legitimately thinks that New Orleans is going to fired up like crazy, they want to get past the turbulent offseason and prove they’re still a winning franchise. I do think that allowing the Saints players that were suspended to play in this game on such short notice is kind of bullshit. The Redskins have planning for this game for weeks, and to throw in a monkey wrench like that a couple days before the game is garbage. Either way, I’ll go with my gut here – the game will be close, and Washington might even hold the lead at one point, but the injuries to Washington’s secondary will ultimately be its demise as the Saints regain control and take the win.
Buffalo Bill at New York Jets 1:00 PM
Andrew – Buffalo Bills. – I am singing the Bill’s praises this year! (I did that last year for the Bucs and we all know how well that turned out). But regardless, I feel like Fitzpatrick is borderline legit, their receivers are up and coming, and the defense (especially the defensive line) is going to be dominate. It doesn’t matter that the Jets will still have a formidable defense since they have no idea what’s going on this year. I do know at some point this season, Tim Tebow gets named the starting QB. Heard it hear first folks.
St. Louis Rams at Detroit Lions 1:00 PM
Andrew – Detroit Lions. I’m sure the Rams have some tricks up their sleeves to keep this game interesting at first, but the Stafford to Megatron connection can’t and won’t be stopped. I’m not anticipating a blowout, but I don’t see the Rams keeping it close at any point.
Miami Dolphins at Houston Texans 1:00 PM
Andrew – Houston. Just like everyone else in survivor leagues, this is my absolutely lock pick of the week (although I didn’t pick it in my league because I wanted to keep Houston for when I need it). Anyway, I don’t see Miami having a chance here, does anyone?
San Francisco 49ers at Green Bay Packers 4:25 PM
Andrew – Green Bay Packers. Easily the best game of the week. I’m not 100% sold that the 49ers will continue their performance from last year. Essentially, I’m considering this Alex Smith’s sophomore year (since it’s Jim Harbaugh’s second), and now that book is out on their plays and schemes, will teams have adjusted in the offseason and if so, how will the 49ers adjust back? Those questions aside, I think it will be tough for them to come into Green Bay and steal a win – it’s not like Green Bay has lost a step from last year either (in fact, may have found themselves a running back which would only add to their offensive power).
Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals
Andrew – Arizona Cardinals. This is a tough game for me to care about. In the grand scheme of things, I’m not expecting much from either team. I’m going with the home team pick here and the notion that John Skelton doesn’t get enough credit for his wins.
Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4:25 PM
Andrew – Carolina Panthers. I don’t think any one team looked worse in preseason than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It was awful to watch. I’m not entirely sure what changes they’ve bad but they’re fallen far from their potential in the 2010 season. I hope that Cam Newton continues to dominate in all aspects of the game, so that at least the Bucs fans can see what good football looks like.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Denver Broncos 8:20 PM
Andrew – Denver Broncos. I bet if you asked the Steelers defense what their nightmares were during the offseason, it would have been that 2012 playoff game in Denver that they lost, but instead of the Broncos having Tim Tebow, they had Peyton Manning. Thank god it was just a dream, right?
Monday, September 10th
Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens 7:00 PM
Andrew – Cincinnati Bengals. I don’t know what it is… I don’t know Cincinnati has me entirely convinced yet, but I don’t think the Ravens are as good as everyone thinks they are. Their offense struggles against good defenses and their defense fails to contain good offenses. You think if it wasn’t TJ Yates throwing those interceptions in that playoff game that the Ravens would have even gotten a wiff of the AFC Championship game? Hell no – and they still could barely beat the Texans. So people, please, get realistic – the Ravens aren’t that good. Just. Watch.
San Diego Chargers at Oakland Raiders 10:15 PM
Andrew – Oakland. I’ve heard good things coming out of Oakland’s camp. If Darren McFadden is back and healthy, they will be a tough team to beat (until he gets injured again). San Diego seems to have some underlining issues coupled with a history of starting slow. I think this one goes Oakland’s way.
The playoffs are here! WOOOO!!!!!
Andrew – Atlanta. I was pretty hard on Atlanta in the first part of the year, but down the stretch / when it matters most, their offense has really started clicking. Although rookie Julio Jones struggled with injuries, you can see what a huge difference he makes when he’s on the field, and New York will struggle to cover both him and Roddy White. If Atlanta can establish the run game with Michael Turner against the traditionally stout Giants defensive line, then Atlanta has opportunity to keep New York off balance and on their heels. Although Eli Manning has probably had his best year yet (or since winning the SuperBowl), and even with the emergence of undrafted rookie WR Victor Cruz, I just don’t see the Giants offense being able to do enough when it comes to it. Keep in mind, this Giants team got swept by the Redskins this season. THE REDSKINS!
Greg – Atlanta. The Giants have had a pretty rough year, never really looking like a playoff bound team. But alas, the NFC East was horrible, so they got to sneak into the playoffs — and with home field advantage. This game should still be interesting, because like the Giants, the Falcons have looked inconsistent this year also. The game should be pretty close, I think Eli will play well, but at the end of the game, the rest of his team will let him down. The Falcons win a close one.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Denver Broncos 4:30 ET
Andrew – Pittsburgh. Ugh, I don’t know what to make of this game. The stupid Steelers are so injured that the Broncos could win this just by default. Sure Safety, and leader of the Defense, Brian Dawkins is out (who I wanted the Redskins to get after he left Philadelphia), but the Denver defense has been known to clamp down when it tries, with or without him. One way or another, both teams have become too predictable. Broncos ran the ball 100% of the time on first down in the first quarter of their last game. Due to Ben’s injury, the Steelers have been passing out of shotgun formation 80% of the time. This leaves little to the imagination. The only break that the Steelers may get in this game are turnovers. Containing Tebow is a must, forcing him to air it out…and if he airs it to the wrong team too many times, we may just see Brady Quinn (as some people have been reported / denied by the team though). One the flip side, if Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil get after Ben Rothlisburger, we may end up seeing Dennis Dixon. Super long story short, in the end I think Denver will struggle moving the ball against the Steelers defense, and while the Steelers won’t be as proficient as they have been in years past, will do enough to win the game.
Greg – Denver Broncos. The Steelers are coming into this game an 8 point favorite…in Denver! A slap in the face to the Broncos who should use it as a rally cry going into this game. It sort of reminds me of the Saints-Seahawks game last year — I think a similar situation plays out today. Big Ben thrives off being able to be mobile and stand up to tacklers, with his injured ankle, he will be limited in both aspects. With no Mendenhall either, their offense could find themselves struggling for points against a pretty good defense in Denver. On the other side, Tebow time. The Steelers must contain him. He has been good at not throwing interceptions, but keep him in the pocket and he gets nervous and usually gets strip sacked. I think this game will be very interesting to watch in the beginning. How each team comes out in the first quarter will dictate the rest of the game. I think Broncos win in a close one, a couple turnovers by the Steelers — maybe one to set up a Tebow time drive!
Saturday Jan 7th
Cincinnati Bengals at Houston Texans 4:30 ET
Andrew – Houston. All week I’ve been say that the Bengals were going to win, and even though recently, I’ve been going against my instincts and been wrong, I still think that it will be Houston that wins this game. Both teams have great defense, and both teams have decent offenses – Houston’s running attack is killer, while rookie receiver AJ Green has had an outstanding year. Both Quarterbacks are rookies (first time ever in a playoff match up), but Dalton has a bit more experience, playing the full year, rather than Yates who was a third stringer, coming in after injuries to Matt Schaub and Matt Leinart. I think Cincinnati will make sure to take away Andre Johnson as a passing option (as best as possible), but that will inevitably open things up underneath. I’m expecting a close game, and probably low scoring away, maybe 24-20, Texans.
Greg – Cincinnati. I do not trust the Texans to win this game. The Bengals have not beaten a team in the playoffs, but I trust the rookie Dalton over Yates. Cincinnati wins a close game.
Detriot Lions at New Orleans Staints 8:00 ET
Andrew – New Orleans. The way the Lions got torched by backup Matt Flynn (who will be a starter somewhere else next year) leads me to believe that Drew Brees won’t have much of a problem doing the same. The Saint’s offensive line has done well protecting Brees all year, and although Suh could cause some match up problems, I don’t really see the Lion’s defense line alone stymieing New Orleans’ offense. On the other hand, it’s not like Matt Stafford has just been a complete bust. He has now joined the 5,000 yards mark and has Calvin Johnson, Titus Young and Brandon Pettigrew who can all cause some issues for the Saints Defense. I expect to see a good ol’ fashion, high scoring shoot out, with the Saints coming out on top.
Greg – New Orleans. I really hope this is a shoot out. Really do. but I don’t think the Lions can keep up, Stafford should throw a couple interceptions to turn the game. Saints win by at least two touchdowns, covering the spread for the ninth time at home this season.
Sunday, Jan. 8th…. (teaser of a post!)
Doing just Thursday and Saturday right now! The rest will come very soon, we promise!
THU, DEC 15 TIME (ET)
Jacksonville Jaguars at Atlanta Falcons 8:20 PM
Andrew – Atlanta. I counted the Falcons down and out last week and they came back and proved me wrong. It seems like the Jaguars have pulled together quiet a solid defense, so this could be a long boring game if the Falcon’s ineptitude flares up again. I’m going with the home team that has the ability to points on the board, and if Julio Jones is healthy enough, expect him to have another solid week.
Greg – Atlanta Falcons. The Jaguars are not a good team. They got pretty lucky with an unbelievable pre-half collapse by the Bucs. That won’t happen this week. The Falcons’ Matty Ice is FINALLY starting to be the quarterback he was last year. While the Jags defense could make this game close, I see the Falcons pulling away in the 2nd half. Also, I really hate that the Jags got so many night games this year, I doubt they get 1 next year.
SAT, DEC 17 TIME (ET)
Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 8:20 PM
Andrew – Dallas. The Buccaneers defense won’t be able stand the test of time against all the Dallas offensive weapons. So rookie DeMarco Murray goes down…. well it’s not like Felix Jones was ever meant to be the Cowboy’s back up running back in the first place. Legarrette Blount hasn’t ran with the same physical force and speed that he had last year and the result has added more pressure on struggling Josh Freeman. This could be a rough game for the home crowd.
Greg – Dallas Cowboys. Saturday night football is back! The Bucs just had a huge collapse last week, but so did the Cowboys. I think the Cowboys are clearly the better team here though and they are fighting for the (horrible) NFC East spot — Cowboys win easily.
Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans 1:00 PM
Andrew – Houston. I keep picking against the Texans and Yates keeps proving me wrong. Very frustrating. Obviously Wade Phillips has had a good impression on the defense, as it’s completely shutting down opposing offenses. I’m hoping for more of the same in the game with Yates being able to put up enough points on the weak Panthers defense to squeak out another game, but to be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if Carolina came out guns slinging.
Greg – Carolina. I think the Texans have had a pretty good run here, we can all agree on that. Yates has played well when he needed to. But I can’t see this winning continuing forever. This game will be close, but I’m looking for Cam to have a late drive to win it.