by Rick Rockwell
For those seeking guidance in navigating the office pool during the National Football League season, look no further. Here are the picks of your semi-friendly editor. Remember, NFL culture is all about debating with friends about which team has the upper hand, not to mention how your fantasy players did this week.
Last Season’s Record: .689
Game of the Week: Colts at Giants, Sunday night
The brothers Manning clash, along with two playoff teams from last season. Both teams are among the top ten best in the league. NBC has a great game for its first Sunday night telecast. Take the Colts in a tight one.
Cowboys at Jaguars, Sunday
The Cowboys are poised to improve upon their mediocre showing of last year, but not against the Jaguars who were a playoff team. The Cowboys will keep it close, but the Jaguars are too solid and should win at home.
Falcons at Panthers, Sunday
This is an early test of dominance in the National Football Conference (NFC) South. The Panthers are one of the best teams in the conference. They should continue their winning ways.
Dolphins at Steelers, Thursday night
The feisty Dolphins (see “Rocky’s Football Corner”) will spoil the home opener of the World Champs. That’s what happens when your starting quarterback has an emergency appendectomy.
Ravens at Buccaneers, Sunday
Las Vegas likes the Bucs, who made the playoffs last year. The Ravens will show their retooled team is a contender again in a mild upset of the Bucs on the road.
Bengals at Chiefs, Sunday
The Chiefs are tough to beat at home in Kansas City. Even if the Bengals are a playoff team from last year, the Chiefs will demonstrate why they are one of the best teams in the conference this year.
Saints at Browns, Sunday
Both of these teams are still projects needing further assembly. The Browns, however, are very comfortable winning at home.
Jets at Titans, Sunday
Neither one of these rebuilding teams looks to do much this season. However, the Jets have more in their tank, even on the road.
49ers at Cardinals, Sunday
Two of the lesser teams in the weakest division in the NFL clash in this game, which actually might make it interesting. The Cardinals have too much talent to lose.
Bills at Patriots, Sunday
This early divisional game should show the Patriots are one of the dominant teams in the league. Will they put in the second team in the last quarter?
Broncos at Rams, Sunday
The Broncos remain one of the elite teams in the league and the Rams are just slightly above mediocre. Even playing at home is no advantage for the Rams. The Broncos should win easily.
Chargers at Raiders, Monday night
The Chargers are one of the best in the league this year behind stellar running back Ladainian Tomlinson. But they play in the league’s toughest division. The Raiders are much improved but the Chargers should spoil their home opener.
Vikings at Washington, Monday night
The Vikings are still rebuilding and Washington may be one of the very best teams in the NFC. Legendary coach Joe Gibbs should be smiling after this one.
Eagles at Texans, Sunday
The Eagles won’t be broken patsies like last year. Although the Texans are much improved from their cellar-dwelling performance of last season, the Eagles will show they will be competitive this season by crushing Houston.
Bears at Packers, Sunday
This is the oldest rivalry in the NFL. The Bears were division champs last year but played a very weak schedule. However, the Packers have not gelled. Not yet. Take the Bears.
Seahawks at Lions
The Seahawks went to the Super Bowl last year and Detroit is possibly the worst team in the NFL. This should be a walk-over with the Seahawks posting their first win of the season.
Enjoy opening week!
(This post was originally filed on Sept. 6, but due to a technical problem it was refiled on Sept. 7. None of the picks were changed.)
by Rick Rockwell