Posted: September 11, 2011 (08:37 PM)
During the summer I didn't think I'd be able to say this, but football (of the American variety) is back. And just in time too because the past week has been extremely painful to be a Red Sox fan as they slowly implode in on themselves. So here are my predictions/commentary on some teams.
Steelers & Ravens - The Ravens really beat the Steelers bad. The media seems to be championing the Ravens predicting that they'll take the division. If today's game was any indication, then maybe they're on to something. Regardless I'm sure you'll see both teams in the playoffs, but I don't think this is going to be Flacco's year. Especially when he'll likely have to go through the Patriots and/or Jets to get to the Super Bowl.
Colts - If you're a football fan, you've likely heard about Peyton Manning's impending neck surgery that will likely make him miss the season. This pretty much effectively tanks the Colts and makes them a non-threat.
Eagles - I don't pay as much attention to the NFC, but the Eagles are an interesting team to follow. Not only is Michael Vick extremely talented, but there's all the hype about the 'Dream Team' they've created. I think this team is only going to get better as the season progresses.
Packers - The Packers want to be the next Patriots but they're forgetting that the Patriots are still the Patriots. They looked good in their opener, and I think it's very possible they'll be back at the Super Bowl if not repeat a win.
Jets - Honestly pretty surprised with how tonight's game is going. 17-7 in the 3rd with the Cowboys winning. I don't know if Dallas has good defense or their offense just sucks. I figured the Jets would be even better this year, but hey whenever the Jets lose, that's a good day.
Giants - This will be the year Tom Coughlin gets fired, but hey Eli Manning will have a better season than his brother at least.
Patriots - Tom Brady will do his best being Tom Brady and that will win a lot of games. Wes Welker & co will do their best catching some balls and that will win games to. Chad Ochocinco will be living with a fan or something. At some point Randy Moss will make a shocking announcement that he is coming out of retirement to play football with his buddy Tom. The Patriots will have an undefeated season and beat the Eagles/Packers 100-0 in the Super Bowl (700-0 if Bill Belichick suits up and plays left tackle). Jokes about the Patriots being the Boston team to go the longest without a title will be deferred to the Red Sox.
On a side note, I'm starting a new job tomorrow, but that's misleading to say because I've been doing per diem work for the same position at the same hospital (same floor and unit too) since July. The only difference is now I have a guaranteed 40 hour work week and I'll have my own caseload instead of covering for other therapists, which in some ways is easier and some ways harder. I'm kinda surprised I found full time this quickly in this economy but that's healthcare I suppose.
Title: Re: Football
Posted: September 11, 2011 (09:00 PM)
I heard about Manning and I'm not even a football fan. That prevents me from saying anything else about the football, but I wanted to comment anyway and say "congratulations!" on the 40-hour thing. That's big news in the current economy.
Title: Re: Football
Posted: September 12, 2011 (06:17 PM)
I'm a Giants fan and as usual it's pretty much impossible to predict what this team will accomplish. I wouldn't be surprised if they win the Super Bowl and I also won't be surprised if they finish dead last in their division. I guess predicting an 8-8 season is the easy way out, so that's what I will do.
Oh, congrats on the job.
Title: Re: Football
Posted: September 12, 2011 (07:08 PM)
The Packers really looked like the team to beat this year. It's pretty amazing how unheralded almost all of their stars were coming out of college too -- they identify under-valued talent better than anyone, and win because of it, not because they identify guys that fit their schemes (Pats and Steelers two examples). Really great front office there.
I didn't believe the Steelers offensive line as as bad as advertised this pre-season, but week one really makes you think. I'm still not sold on the Ravens this year (although I think Evans opens up the middle a lot more for Boldin and Dickson), but they looked like a playoff team yet again. The Steelers, though, have a lot more questions, since Mendenhall had 400 plus touches and was knocked around a lot last year, and Roethlisberger might be screwed behind that o-line (and his back-up Leftwich is already done for the year). I couldn't see them missing the playoffs before the season, but now I can.
Cam Newton isn't that good, but the Panthers might win six games. The Cardinals secondary, however, is probably that bad.
I'm an Eagles fan and I'm worried. It looks like teams can run it down their throats with their emphasis on the d-line rushing upfield and the weak linebacking core. They might be in trouble in games where their explosive offensive takes a while to kick into gear, and I'd expect the Falcons to ram Michael Turner down their throat next week.
Speaking of which, Bears beat the Falcons. Chalk it up to it being hard to win on the road in the NFL, but the Bears are flying under the radar again and could be a playoff team with few breaks like last year.
Except the Lions looked pretty legit too. I'm not sold on the Bucs -- just like last year, they'll beat the teams they should and lose to the better teams.
Chargers won, although it was way too close for facing a quarterback that didn't throw for forty passing yards. McNabb looked pretty washed up. He might have a few decent dome games this year, but that seems like a best case scenario right now.
Chiefs looked really bad. They don't let Charles loose enough and don't have the benefit of an easy schedule like last year. I thought the Bills were better than people were giving them credit for and might eek out a win, but not this. Might be a few upsets in the AFC East this year -- I could see a win over the Jets or the Pats.
Speaking of the Jets, I still don't believe. They won too many close games kind of luckily last year (Bengals, Lions come to mind) and that is going to catch up to them eventually. It didn't against the Cowboys, because Tony Romo is Tony Romo. I don't think they ever make a Super Bowl with him behind center and he wastes the best years of Austin and Bryant.
I thought the Redskins might be an annoying problem in the NFC East and it looks like that might come true. Big year for Tim Hightower in a Shanahan offense, although I'm not sure Rex gets them quite to a six seed.
I don't think the Colts can play any worse, although it sure would make sense to give snaps to a quarterback with more potential than Kerry Collins. The current team is revealing that Jim Caldwell is not an NFL coach, as their drafts have been horrible and filled with first round mistakes, their depth has decreased dramatically each year, and no new talent develops from within. This team would be better with Manning as coach/talent evaluator.
I'd take the Browns offense the Bengals defense as a playoff team, but neither looked that great as a whole.
I'd say the AFC South would be as bad as the NFC West, but then St Louis gets a slew of injuries, and that whole division is now a trainwreck. Cardinals are a sleeper now, since they can at least win some shoot outs, while the 49ers and Seahawks looked completely inept.
That Giants team isn't winning the Super Bowl, and I'd expect Coughlin to retire rather than being fired.
Title: Re: Football
Posted: September 13, 2011 (12:08 AM)
I'll offer some commentary on the teams I care about.
This is more or less a hunch, but I don't see the Packers winning the Super Bowl this year, if only because "the team to beat" usually gets beaten. I'm predicting that either the Ravens or the Bears will steal momentum from Green Bay late season (or possibly in the playoffs). The Patriots are always contenders, but the Steelers and the Colts (both playoff regulars) seem to be facing uphill battles at this point. Not totally sold on the Lions yet but I like what I've seen.
I'd say the Eagles caught a lot of lucky breaks in yesterday's game, firstly with that early turnover, and secondly with the Rams' best players spontaneously conjuring up injuries. (After that first play, Steven Jackson apparently felt he'd contributed enough for the day.) I'm also expecting pretty much every team we play to put constant pressure on Vick. He's one of the most capable quarterbacks in the league and he can hustle his way out of a jam, but his low completion rating for that game really demonstrates how much of a blow he takes when you limit him like that. I'm also totally expecting Vick to get injured at least once this season, but Young looked pretty good in the preseason so I'm not terribly worried.
Plus, McCoy pretty much owns our running game at this point. He's pretty much where Westbrook was six or seven years ago.
I missed the part of the Cowboys-Jets game where the Cowboys lost (i.e. the good part), but I'm seeing playoff potential in the Jets, if only because I'm not terribly impressed with too many teams right now. I'm not used to the Redskins being much of a threat and I still won't consider them one until I see how they play against a more capable defense. Speaking of which, the Giants could very well be what the Cowboys were last year, which means Genj's prediction that Coughlin gets fired could prove eerily accurate.