Interesting week one ahead. It's always fun trying to predict the week one spreads as let's face it, it's tough to do.
The Giants, Broncos and maybe Steelers look like the strongest plays in my book this week, with relatively easy spreads to cover against teams with huge question marks against them.
Two outsiders I particularly like to cover are the Titans and the Browns.
Anyway, on with the madness!
Giants (H) -4.5 over Redskins
Home field. The World Champions buzz still fresh. I openly query, has any team that is still selling Superbowl merchandise ever lost a home opener? Ever? That packed house, the feeling of superiority, the opposition feeling slightly over-matched. I don’t think the Giants are going to be any great shakes in ‘08/’09 however tonight is their night.
Bengals -1.5 over Ravens (H)
Baltimore are starting a rookie QB and missing their all-world safety. The ‘chain-gang’ Bengals will no doubt try and turn this into a shoot-out, and if they manage any sort of offence, how are Baltimore going to keep up? Answer, they aren’t.
Lions -3 over Falcons (H)
Much as I am rooting for Matt Ryan to make it in the NFL, his supporting cast isn’t exactly awesome. Assuming Ryan isn’t ready to take the Falcons on his back and lead them to victory in his first game ever, well then, you have to think the Lions are the pick here.
Dolphins +3 (H) over Jets
This isn’t the most scientific pick of the litter however this screams ‘redemption game’ for Chad Pennington. Cast aside by the Jets, Pennington can play a huge hand in taking those lofty aspirations of the Jets fans down a peg or nine. Plus, the fish have the whole 'Home Dawg' thing going on. There's always that.
Patriots -38 (H) over Chiefs
Kansas looks really, really, really bad. Superbad, I would go as far as saying.
Broncos -3 over Raiders (H)
Consider me part of the Jay Cutler bandwagon, sign me up. He has always been a pretty decent QB and now that he has dealt with his health issues you would have to assume he is going to take it up a notch. I caught a couple of Raiders games last year and Russell does not look NFL ready, in any shape or form. He looked like a poor man’s Vince Young, and that is not a good thing. Broncos in a landslide.
Bears +9.5 over Colts (H)
Is Peyton Manning even playing in this game? 9.5 just seems wildly over the top this early considering there is nothing wrong with Chicago’s ‘D’. Sure, they would struggle against a fully functional Colts machine, however that simply isn’t the case right now, with Manning hobbled by surgery.
Steelers (H) -6.5 over Texans
Why should we all suddenly be worshipping at the altar of Matt Schuab? Sorry, I don’t buy it. Veteran Steelers team to have their way with Houston. Those who picked Matt Schuab in the fourth round of a fantasy draft left feeling somewhat silly.
Titans +3 (H) over Jaguars
Home Dawg alert! Huge defensive struggle, probably low scoring, probably multiple injury from hard hits and a fight between two of the toughest teams in the NFL. Everybody and their mother is all over the Jaguars as a sleeper for this season, and that scares me. Think the Titans are going to roll over at home on day one? Take the points and enjoy the upset.
Saints (H) -3.5 over Buccaneers
The Saints have re-tooled heavily in the off-season, and early reports are that their offense should take another step forward in the coming NFL season. If that’s the case, their home field advantage, Drew Brees, Colston and Bush should be enough to cover against the traveling Buccaneers.
Cardinals -2.5 over Niners (H)
Too many offensive weapons against too little hope for the season.
Bills -1 (H) over Seahawks
Now here’s a sleeper team. Buffalo could be a decent 9-7 side this season. Seattle on the road? No thanks.
Eagles (H) -7.5 over Rams
Kind of hard to get excited about the Rams anymore, every season they are the designated ‘maybe/what if’ guys, what if Marc Bulger doesn’t completely suck this season? What if Marc Bulger’s arm doesn’t fall off after week three? What if their defence decides to actually show up on gameday? What if the Eagles absolutely pound them at home? Look for the easiest answer, isn’t that what they say? Eagles possibly in a laugher.
Browns (H) +5.5 over Cowboys
Home Dawg alert! Tony Romo alert! Home Dawg alert! Two alerts for the price of one. Tony Romo spent the entire summer with Jessica Simpson. Insert your own joke here really, but can’t you see the Brownies covering the 5.5 at least, at home in the Dawg pound?
Panthers +9 over Chargers (H)
Just too early for a decent side like Caroline to be getting 9 points, particularly when Phillip Rivers is actively involved.
Vikings +2.5 over Packers (H)
Adrian Peterson v Aaron Rodgers. Enough said.
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