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CHUD.COM Football Picks Article

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Hi All..

In theory, me and my buddy, the incomparable DT, are supposed to be doing a weekly Pro Football Pick ’em column over at CHUD.com.  I say in theory because, at this point, neither DT nor I have the requisite permissions to post over there yet.   I’m confident that will happen sometime.  Hopefully before the 2015 NFL season.  If it doesn’t, well, the column will run here.

And now…the picks…

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Packers at Seattle
Bryan: Going with Seattle at this one. They’re at home and Green Bay’s defense has more holes than in it than Prometheus’s plot.

SEATTLE

D.T.: The Packers did made some moves to improve their secondary, signing ex-Bear Julius Peppers, and picking up Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in the draft. However, finishing 2013 as 28th in rushing defense and 24th in pass defense is still a hell of a hole to claw their way out of. And like you mentioned… they’re playing in CenturyLink Field. I expect the game to be close, but I see the ‘Hawks coming out ahead.

SEATTLE

—-

Bills at Bears

Bryan: I’m taking the Bears here.  The Bills haven’t done anything in the off-season to warrant any faith. And they’re on the road.

BEARS

D.T.: The Bills made some strides, man! They drafted Sammy Watkins, who has been magical in practice, and looks to be a stud. The did lose Jairus Byrd and huge chunk of their defensive confidence right along with him. I think he Bills might show some flashes of greatness this season, but I agree that it probably won’t start here.

BEARS

—–

Browns at Steelers

Bryan: The countdown to Manziel starting begins here. And it will begin with a Browns loss.

STEELERS

D.T.: We’re going to see Manziel by the time Cleveland’s bye week rolls around, but not for any fault of Hoyer’s. Cleveland’s tight end Jordan Cameron is limited by injury, and their star wide receiver is limited by not evolving beyond the human need for oxygen, and cannot hold his breath while other people smoke marijuana around him. Allegedly. Pittsburgh’s running game is completely defunct for similar reasons, which leaves two broken teams to battle it out in what may turn out to be the most tedious game of week one. Still, it’s a divisional match-up and it’s the season opener. For that reason, I’m giving it to the home team.

STEELERS

—–

Jaguars at Eagles

Bryan: Really?  Eagles.

Displaying jags.jpg

EAGLES

D.T.: Remember when I said the Browns/Steelers game could be the most tedious of the week? That’s still true. But this might be the most one-sided. The Jaguars going out to visit the Eagles is like having your slow-witted friend over to play Mario Kart, and handing him the MadCatz controller with the permanently-stuck B button. If Foles were to start taking a knee in the 3rd quarter, would that be arrogant, or merciful?

EAGLES

—–

Patriots at Dolphins

Bryan: HOW WILL BELICHICK AND BRADY HANDLE THE FOOTBALL JUGGERNAUT THAT IS THE 2014 MIAMI DOLPHINS AND RYAN TANNEHILL!!!??!!!

Quite well, thank you for asking.

PATRIOTS

D.T.: Bryan, they’re going to handle Brady-Chick by… uh… I got nothin’. The Patriots having Gronkowski back, which will set their offense on fire, and their defense has been bolstered by Darrelle Revis and “The Scariest Man in College Football”, Dominique Easley. They’re looking stacked, and the most the ‘Fins were able to muster is the addition of Branden Albert to their abysmal offensive line. It’s the Patriots.

PATRIOTS

—–

Saints at Falcons

Bryan: I’m expecting a lot of offense here, with Julio Jones and Roddy White back again. But I have my doubts about Ryan in the red zone without Mr. Gonzalez. So I’ll go with the Saints.

SAINTS

D.T.: A bitter divisional rivalry between a dominant team that keeps improving, and an opponent that continues to slip. The Saints are in peak form on both sides of the ball, while Matt Ryan has to conduct an average passing game and an inconsistent running game from behind an offensive line that (judging from last season’s effort) might actually want him dead. The Saints are going to parade through the division, tossing beads as the other three teams lift their tops. Atlanta is the first stop.

SAINTS

—–

Panthers at Buccaneers

Bryan: The Panthers might be without Cam Newton this game. Which is fine, because the Panthers have no one to throw to anyway. That said, the Buccaneers offensive line is leaky and Luke Kuechly is a beast. This is the kind of game that makes me glad I’m not picking scores.  This could end up being a 9-6 barn burner.

PANTHERS

D.T.: I think Cam will show up for work, and he’s got an interesting new tool in Kelvin Benjamin. The kid is massive, and may be the best rookie Wide Receiver this season. I mean, look at him:

Inline image 1

This reporter is sitting on DeAngelo Williams’ shoulders.

And Greg Olsen is more than capable of taking on his share of receptions. Losing their entire receiving corp is a huge blow, but Carolina is a scrappy team and able to put plays together, and their Kuechly/Hardy powered defense is enough to contain the Bucs. I see them winning in a close game.

PANTHERS

—–

Colts at Broncos

Bryan: Remember that scene in Rocky V when that thinly veiled Don King dude is going off about the “YOUNG LION VERSUS OLD LION!”  That’s this game.  Except without the fine acting from Mr. Tommy Gunn.

Seriously, I’d take the Colts, but this is the regular season.  You know, where Peyton excels.

BRONCOS

D.T.: We’re on the same page here, for sure. Even with Wes Welker suspended, the Broncos offense is still a powerhouse, and their defense is back to full strength (possibly even better with the addition of DeMarcus Ware from Dallas). Manning has something to prove in a fresh match-up against Luck, free of Jim Irsay’s psychological warfare. Expect a fierce offensive shoot out with some surprises from both defenses, but an eventual Broncos victory.

BRONCOS

—–

Bengals at Ravens

Bryan: I’m going with the Bengals. Because I like tigers.  And I have to pick someone here.

BENGALS

D.T.: Cincinnati’s passing game and defense are superior to Baltimore’s, while both sport average running games. However, the Bengals’ red zone production gives them the edge, and I think they’ll do some scoring when it matters. They’ll give the Ravens a run for their money. Really though, let’s move on. Preferably to more Cheerleaders.

BENGALS

Inline image 1

This year’s cheerleader handbook includes Ray Rice safety tips.

—–

Redskins at Texans

Bryan: JJ Watt will be in a good mood after signing his mega deal and Clowney will want to show everyone why he was a number one pick.  Bad news for RGII and RGIII.

That said I’m still picking the Redskins, since offensively the Texans stink. I expect Kirk Cousins to have a big day here.

REDSKINS

D.T.: You’re expecting Cousins to make an appearance as early as week one? I think their offense is going to struggle even with DeSean Jackson catching passes — however, I think Head Coach Jay Gruden and General Manager Bruce Allen are shackled to RGIII, for better or worse. Going against the Texans’ defense, however, I don’t see a bright end to their first week. Washington is a ripe target for a Watt/Clowney debut and I see the Houston defense containing this game.

TEXANS

—–

Titans at Chiefs

Bryan: I’m not sure the Titans are up for this. I expect the Chiefs to take a step back this year, but not here.

D.T.: The Titans are good in the trenches, but the Chiefs will put them to the test, everywhere else. A far better passing game, a running game they can’t match up with, and a stadium that will down out communication will dismantle the Titans in week one, and score the Chiefs and opening day victory by a significant margin.

CHIEFS

—–

Vikings at Rams

Bryan: Adrian Peterson plus no Sam Bradford equals a loss for the Rams.

VIKINGS

D.T.: I personally cannot wait to see what sort of team Minnesota grows into after the first few weeks. They’re one team where I see great potential and some exciting twists and turns in their 2014 storyline. However, I think week one will be formulaic and safe. The Vikings offense will go through the motions and the Rams defense will push back. And while the Rams’ offense suffered a huge blow in the loss of Sam Bradford, I honestly think it was more of a shot to their morale than their offensive production. Shaun Hill is just as serviceable as Sam Bradford; the difference being that Hill may have peaked, while Bradford may – at this point – never reach his full potential. Still, I expect the Rams to take a victory here by a small gap.

RAMS

—–

Raiders at Jets

Bryan: Here’s a graphical representation of this game…

JETS…I guess.

D.T.: Totally the Jets. Chris Johnson and Eric Decker should beef up their offense and Geno Smith should come in with loads more confidence this season. Their defense will be shredded in weeks to come, but week one will serve as a nice warm-up against a team who seems to be perpetually cleaning the slate with gasoline and fire.

JETS

—–

49ers at Cowboys

Bryan: This game vexes me.  On one hand, I really want the 49ers to lose, since I hate that team and everything they stand for.  However, that means the Cowboys will win, and I’ve detested them longer than the 49ers.

If this game ends in a tie, I’ll know that God loves me.  But since he doesn’t…

49ers.

D.T.: The Cowboys’ defense was a joke last season, and they’ve somehow managed to lose all of it’s best and most relevant parts coming into 2014. The 49ers just had their best pass-rusher sidelined with suspension, so that leaves both quarterbacks a little more at ease and able to move the ball around. It’s going to be San Fransisco by a margin, though: their offense is just too good for their opponents’ absolutely terrible secondary.

49ers.

—–

Giants at Lions

Bryan: The Giants offensive line hasn’t gotten any better. But we’ve been saying that for years now.  This time though Suh is playing, and he’s an angry man that likes hurting people.

LIONS

D.T.: Like all of the NFC West, the Lions lack in pass defense and rushing. While I agree that Eli’s offensive line is still complete crap, I don’t think he’ll be fleeing for his life. However, I also think that the Giants are in a strange transitional time (hopefully transitioning out of being an embarrassment), and they’re going to be a mess for at least a little while longer. Their secondary might be decent, but I don’t think they’ll pull it together to slow down the one-two combo that Matt Stafford now has in Megatron and Golden Tate.

LIONS

—–

Chargers at Cardinals

Bryan: This is one is harder to pick than you would assume.  See, normally I’d pick the Cards and feel pretty good about it.  But here’s the kicker: I’m flying out to see this game. And it’s my first time being in the new Cardinals stadium, after being a season ticket holder from 98-2000.  So Chargers will win in a rout.

CHARGERS

D.T.: No way, dude. The Cardinals may have lost key elements of their 2013 secondary, but they’ve made big strides to plug up the holes. Plus, their offense is loaded with receiver talent and a QB that (while still inconsistent) is much more comfortable in Coach Bruce Arians’s tricky offense. Chargers Quarterback and Resident Bolo Tie Enthusiast, Phillip Rivers, will keep with his amazing momentum from last season, but Arizona is a team that’s coming into this season hungry, charged with a dynamic new roster, and looking to set an immediate tone for 2014. As long as they can keep turnovers in check, I see the Cardinals winning in a spirited victory.

CARDINALS

Displaying cards.jpg

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Written by B. Michael Krol

September 5, 2014 at 5:16 pm

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