49ers (1-2, Lost vs. Colts) vs. Rams ( 1-2, Lost vs. Cowboys)
So it seems that San Francisco has hit a crisis of confidence. After being pounded into sand by Seattle, the team doesn’t seem to be able to keep it together–which is weird, because this is a frighteningly good team on paper. The addition of Anquan Boldin to a core that includes such stars as Frank Gore and Vernon Davis should make Colin Kaepernick look like a superstar, but they’ve dropped two in a row and threaten to join The Aluminums and The Runts in the no-nickname club if this trend continues.
I don’t think it will, though. Yes, I think the Rams are improved, and will continue to improve until they’re major contenders for a Wild Card berth. But they’re not yet up to the 49ers level, and Sam Bradford is still struggling under center. The game should be close, but San Fran should get its confidence back by a possession or less.
Sunday Games–1 p.m.
Ravens (2-1, Won vs. Texans) vs. Our Bitch (1-2, Lost vs. Paper Planes)
The Ravens have been experiencing some growing pains–and some injuries–but they’re kinda showing the world that they were right in putting their faith in The Marlboro Man (and may I say I find it weird seeing said Marlboro Man without his Marlboro-Man-like ‘stache. Was he afraid of Khan’s ‘stache and backed down?). And given the complete topsy-turvyness of the AFC North, there may very well be a chance that Baltimore will net a wildcard with enough Gimme Games.
And Our Bitch is a Gimme Game. After a strong opening, E.J. Manuel is proving to be just the kind of rookie QB we thought he’d be, and C.J. Spiller is very easily confounded by a stiff defense. This is the perfect game for the Ravens to exert their authority on the world. Expect them to squash Our Bitch by a possession or more.
Bengals (2-1, Won vs. Packers) vs. Browns ( 1-2, Won vs. Vikings)
Hey, Cleveland! Congratulations! It seems that by accident, you’ve uncovered a true starting quarterback. Yes. Brandon Weeden is good, but Brian Hoyer is better. The man managed last week’s game and took advantage of the Browns’ improved offense to handily beat the Vikes. You might actually reach .500 this year and are even closer to becoming a wildcard contender. Hell, you may even sweep the Aluminums!
But you won’t beat A.J. Green, Football Spock and The Bengals. They are, more than ever, the elite of this division, and they will beat you by two possessions. But don’t despair–good times are coming for your blank, named-after-your-first-owner, autumn-dressed selves!
Lions (2-1, Won vs. Native Americans) vs. Bears (3-0, Won vs. Steelers)
I’m glad Detroit is finally getting out of their own ways and racking up wins in what is shaping up to be a winnable division. However, ol’ Glass Jaw is no Kid Nastyman…so while I may claim Megatron is better than Brandon Marshall, I don’t think those passes will reach Mr. Johnson. The superior Chicago defense should shut down Reggie Bush dead in his tracks, resulting in da Bears winning by a possession to a possession and a half.
Chiefs (3-0, Won vs. Eagles) vs. Runts (0-3, Lost vs. Panthers)
Thank you, Mara Organization! Thank you for generating a Giants team so awful no fan of Big Blue can get in my face and mock me for my love of Gang Green. Thank you for letting the team decay so badly that I’m able to take away their nickname and put them on a level with my team.
There’s no getting around it–New York is The Capital of Awful Football this year, and Eli Manning is its mayor. Never has there been such a spectacular contrast between last year and this, where an offense simply cannot. Score. I wonder if they’re going to win anything between now and their bye week (for that matter, I’m wondering if the question is not if there’ll be a 0-16 team this year, but how many). There has to be some major work done to turn Lil’ Blue around, and I am beginning to think a clean sweep might be needed to bring them back up to .500.
And having them run into Andy Reid’s New Gang of Rib-Lovin’, Hard Punchin’, High Scorin’ Chiefs is just going to add more insult to their injuries. Expect the runts to slump even lower than they are now when they lose by a possession to two possessions.
Aluminums (0-3, Lost vs. Bears) vs. Vikings ( 0-3, Lost vs. Browns)
I expected Pittsburgh to degrade. I expected the Vikings to stink. I did not expect these two to be in the same boat. And even though I’ll take Big Rapey over The Ponderous One every time, I’ll also take Adrian Peterson over the whole Aluminums offense. This is going to be an ugly, low-scoring game…but in the end Minnesota will rise above the shiny-but-useless Team With Six Super Bowl Rings That Should Give One Back For How Turrible They Play by a field goal or less.
Buccaneers (0-3, Lost vs. The Sucking Black Hole) vs. Cardinals (1-2, Lost vs. Saints)
I’m somewhat surprised by the positioning of Tampa Bay as the favorite in this match-up. After all, the Buccs are saved from being the absolute worst team of the league solely by the dint of the Gerbils’ presence. Even with the announcement of Josh Freeman’s replacement, there’s not much talent in Steve Schiano’s cupboard. The Cards, on the other hand, actually have won a game with Carson ‘Spaghetti Arm’ Palmer, and will probably win more. The only reason Arizona will come in last place is because they’re in a division with three other decent-to-amazing teams. It’s the Cardinals who will spank the Buccs back into their creamsicle past by beating them by two possessions or more.
Colts (2-1, Won vs. 49ers) vs. Gerbils (0-3, Lost vs. Seahawks)
Yes. I know.
I was just as shocked as you all were by the Gerbils’ scoring a touchdown against Seattle. And given that this sad sack excuse for a high school football team has probably reached its scoring high per game last week, I can’t see them winning against the very strong, very accomplished Indianapolis team. Except Andrew Luck to net about a thousand passing yards in a win by three possessions or more.
Seahawks (3-0, Won vs. Gerbils) vs. Texans (2-1, Lost vs. Ravens)
This is going to be tough game, and because Houston is hosting, it could go either way. I’m calling it for Seattle solely because they seem to be playing at a higher level more consistently than the Texans, but don’t be surprised if The Juggernaut gets a couple of hands on the ball and disrupts Russell Wilson’s game. I expect the winner to do so by less than a possession.
Sunday Games–4:25 p.m
Titans (2-1, Won vs. Chargers) vs. Paper Planes (2-1, Won vs. Our Bitch)
The Titans are playing real well, mainly because Jake Locker has found his balls. They were under the bed, beneath some dirty socks. They’re winning games, and they’re winning games close.
The Paper Planes are playing better than I expected. They managed to outscore Our Bitch, and they made The Sucking Black Hole sweat. All of their games have been close. There’s still tons of problems, not the least of which is their tendency to rack up penalties and their lack of a receiving corps worth a damn, but Geno Smith is actually playing within the realm of competence, and I’m actually considering giving them back their nickname (or upgrading them to their old non-nickname, The BiPlanes).
This is going to be another close game, and I think the teams are evenly matched. But I think the Paper Planes’ Defense will be strong enough to prevent Tennessee from outscoring their offense. Expect New York to slide past the Titans by less than a possession.
Broncos (3-0, Won vs. Ravens) vs. Eagles (1-2, Lost vs. Chiefs)
There’s talk of Peyton and Co. going 16-0. I’m not sure about that, because, you know, ol’ Fetus Head doesn’t cheat like the Crybaby Quarterback did. They will beat the tar out of the struggling Eagles, however, by two possessions or more.
Native Americans (0-3, Lost vs. Lions) vs. Raiders (1-2, Lost vs. Broncos)
Everyone’s probably thinking that this is going to be a good confidence builder for Washington, as Shanahan’s animosity towards Oakland will drive him to coach harder and push RG III to his first victory this season.
Except…the Raiders have been playing tough lately. They’re hanging in games, they’re scoring points, and they’re losing close. A team that’s playing tough is exactly what the Native Americans don’t need to see, because they will take advantage of their weaknesses. I may be the only one calling it for Oakland, but I am, with the Black and Silver taking it by a possession or less.
Cowboys (2-1, Won vs. Ram) vs. Chargers (1-2, Lost vs. Titans)
With all the other teams in their division suddenly acting like the Three Stooges, Dem Boys might be feeling pretty good about themselves. They’re in the same seat as The Sucking Black Hole–namely the best team in a division of goofy. If they can keep racking up the wins before their inevitable big slide in November and December, their berth as NFC East Champion is assured.
And luckily, The Chargers are a good fit for them. Yes, the team is performing better than anyone expected now that they’re free of Norv ‘Good Enough For Government Work’ Turner–but they actually, you know, won a game in September. But I don’t think they’re still got the consistency thing working for them, which Dallas should be able to exploit. Expect Jerry’s Team to win by a possession and a half.
Sunday Games–8:20 p.m
Falcons (1-2, Lost vs. Colts) vs. The Sucking Black Hole of Evil (3-0, Won vs. Buccs)
The Falcons are better than their record indicates. New England is worse, having been lucky in the weakess of their schedule. This could be the first real smack across the head of the Sinister Sweatshirt and his crew that they’re not going to roll easily into their AFC East Championship after all. New England has suffered trying to score, and that’s going to bite them in the ass with Matty Ice and his gang when they rack up some serious points and win by two possessions.
Saints (3-0, Won vs. Cardinals) vs. Dolphins(3-0, Won vs. Falcons)
I think it’s safe to say that the Dolphins are one of the big surprises–I think it’s going to shock a lot of people when they end up winning their first tilt against the underperforming, underscoring Sucking Black Hole of Evil–but whenever I’m asked to choose between two teams and one of those teams is headed by Drew Brees and coached by Sean ‘The Drew Whisperer’ Payton, I will pick that team every time. I expect New Orleans will triumph after a long battle (I smell some overtime) by a possession or less.
Week 3: 10-6