With just 1 day left before the first game of the season begins, I will take a look at what I expect to see from teams this season. Last year, we had a few teams take the next step in their pursuit for the Superbowl. Ultimately, the New York Giants took home the trophy. This year, I expect a few different teams to shine, and a new team to take home the trophy.
Category Archives: Football
Every Tuesday I will go over the previous week of games, with a note or two on the game. To see my picks for this week, click here: https://thesleeperpick.wordpress.com/2012/09/09/nfl-week-1-picks/#more-357
Week 1 (Predicted Winners in Bold and Italicized):
BUF @ NYJ – Was flat out wrong here. NYJ offense looked pretty good, and the defense of the Bills, and Mario did not play so well (though Mario was complaining about missed calls on Austin Howard).
IND @ CHI – Cutler and the offense looked really good. Luck didn’t have a great debut, but had some promising plays.
STL @ DET – Detroit did not run away early, and needed a last second TD to Kevin Smith, to avoid the week 1 upset.
Every sunday I will be making picks for each game of every week. The game that occurs before that sunday, will be picked in the previous article of updated power rankings each week. This past thursday, I correctly picked the Cowboys to beat the Giants. That puts me at a 1-0 mark on the season. Here are the rest of the picks for Week 1:
Week 1 (Winners in Bold and Italicized):
BUF @ NYJ – Bills look to start their season strong again. I believe Williams has a field day against that O-Line, and Jets continue to struggle to put points on the board. Bills take this game.
IND @ CHI – Luck has a solid debut, but the CHI defense is too much. Cutler/Marshall connection looks great, and the Bears win in Luck’s debut.
STL @ DET – Detroit runs away early from the Rams, and the offense looks smooth.
After talking about the NFC position battles, we now move on the the AFC. Let’s take a look at the AFC, division by division, and let’s see what position battles will be taking place during camps and the preseason games.
Houston Texans – Andre Johnson is not getting younger, and the Texans know this. The Texans went out and drafted both Keyshawn Martin and Devier Posey. They hope that one of them can become the #2WR with a strong offseason. The Texans also have Kevin Walter who was the #2WR last year, as well as training camp legend Lestar Jean. I expect Walter to retain his job as the #2WR early in the year, and Jean to be the #3WR this year,
Indianapolis Colts – Long ago were the days of Manning and James leading the Colts to the playoffs. The Colts have now let Manning go and handed the key to Andrew Luck. The problem is the Colts are still looking for their lead back. The Colts have tried out both Donald Brown and Delone Carter in hopes of finding their lead back. They are still hoping one of them can stand out, and I expect Brown to come out of the preseason as the lead back come week 1.
Jacksonville Jaguars – To say Blaine Gabbert struggled last season would be an understatement. Granted he was a rookie, he seemed to be lost most of the season, often not sure what to do when in the pocket. The Jags will give Chad Henne the opportunity the chance to impress them, but I expect the Jags to stick with Gabbert, and hope he improves immensely over the course of the season. If Gabbert continues to struggle, Henne will get the chance to lead the Jags this season.
Tennessee Titans – The Titans have searched for the QB of the future for several years since McNair left Tennessee. It appears the Titans have found their guy with Jake Locker. Locker had a great career at Washington, and had a solid rookie year last year for the Titans. Both he and Matt Hasselbeck will fight for the starting job. Will the Titans start Hasselbeck, and switch to Locker in the middle of the year? I think so. Though I would not be shocked if Locker won the job outright in the preseason, and starts week 1.
Ahhh! August 1st is upon us. The days of July are behind us and the month of August brings us some football. Training camps are going along, and the preseason games will begin soon. With that being said, let’s take a look at the NFC, division by division, and let’s see what position battles will be taking place during camps and the preseason games.
Atlanta Falcons – The Falcons weakest spot on offense last year was at Right Guard. A position that is not heavily talked about, will turn out to be the main focus for ATL coaches during camp. All eyes will be on the guys who think they can improve the position. ATL switched guys several times last year. They brought in veteran Vince Manuwai, and drafted Peter Konz, to hopefully improve the RG spot. With those 2 in camp, as well as Reynolds and Hawley from last year, expect a feisty competition that will likely go down to the last preseason game. I think Konz is the future at RG in ATL, and could be starting week 1.
Carolina Panthers – The Panthers love having some good RB’s. They resigned Williams to a huge contract a few years ago, and also have Stewart, who has also shown he can handle being the starting RB. Heck, if both got hurt, they still have Mike Tolbert who can handle the duties. Williams started most of the games last year, but Stewart saw a lot more snaps. Look for more of the same this year. Williams should start, but Stewart will get more snaps.
New Orleans Saints – The Saints have had a busy offseason to say the least. One thing they can be proud about is the 3 headed monster of Sproles-Ingram-Thomas. Those 3 will all likely get many carries throughout the season. Sproles will likely handle PR duties, and 3rd down duties, and I expect Ingram to have a strong role in the running game. I think Ingram will be the starter, with Thomas getting a few carries here and there, and Sproles being the pesky little guy, he is so great at doing.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers – The Bucs made it clear they wanted another RB, when they drafted Doug Martin. Martin enters TC as the #1 RB, but #2RB, LaGarette Blount, had some success last year as the starter of the Bucs. Martin has looked good in pass protection as well as showing some good hands out of the backfield. Expect Martin to be the starter come week 1, but Blount will probably see some carries as well.