Tuesday, September 14, 2010

NFL Week One Recap

Saints 14, Vikings 9 - New Orleans had everything Thursday night. It had jazz music, fireworks, people celebrating on Bourbon Street, and the raising of some banner... And that was just the pre-game before the start of the 2010 NFL Season, do the people in the Big Easy know how to party or what. Super Bowl MVP Drew Brees had a great day at the office going 27-36 for 237 yards and a touchdown pass to Devery Henderson just 2 minutes into the young season while Pierre Thomas pounded his way into the end zone in the 3rd quarter in what would end up being the game winning score. On the other sideline Lord Favre wasn't exactly at his best going 15-27 for 171 yards with a dazzling touchdown pass to Visanthe Shiancoe to give the Vikings the lead near the end of the 1st half. Sidney Rice looked like he will be a missed piece the first half of the season as Favre will need a big name go to receiver to repeat success.
Next Up
New Orleans: @ San Francisco
Minnesota: vs Miami

Texans 34, Colts 24 - Peyton Manning had another Peyton Manning day on the field in Houtson Sunday afternoon throwing the ball 57 time and passing for 433 yards and 3 touchdowns. Unfortunately Adrian Foster had more an Adrian Peterson day to open the season, the 2nd year player from Tennessee who just won season was on the practice squad ran wild over the Colts defense carrying the ball 33 times for 231 yards and 3 touchdowns and thwarted any chances of a Colts comeback with his 3rd TD run of the game to give the Colts a 34-17 lead with 1:56 left in the 4th. Matt Schaub essentially had the day off only having to pass 17 times for 107 yards, while Andre Johnson contributed with 3 catches for 33 yards. Mean while Austin Collie had a career day in the Colts losing effort catching 11 balls for 163 yards while Reggie Wayne had 9 catches for 99 yards. If the Texans were trying to send a message to the big bad Colts Sunday afternoon that they have company I think I can safely say mission accomplished.
Next Up
Houston @ Washington
Indianapolis vs New York Giants

Redskins 13, Cowboys 7 - I'm sure everybody knows the story by now... Tony Romo and the Cowboys looked like they had done it, they had given the Redskins the game and Redskins had given it right back as Romo had thrown a touchdown pass as time expired to criticized receiver Roy Williams that would have given the Cowboys an extra point away from a win, then Alex Barron gave the game right back with a hold called against him, his 3rd of the night, ever since then I've ran this question over and over in my mind. How many games did Bobby Carpenter cost the Cowboys with one single bonehead play? I'm sure there were multiple play though Sunday night I could look back at and say would if, like Tashard Choice's fumble on the last play of the first half to give the Redskins a 10-0 lead, which would end up being the games winning points. The Cowboys must get the offensive line woes fixed now if they hope to achieve their goal of making Super Bowl XLV a home game, if not they could very well be watching the playoffs at home come January.
Next Up
Washington vs Houston
Dallas vs Chicago

Ravens 10, Jets 9 - The Ravens defense looked as good as they've been the past couple of season even without Ed Reed, and Rex Ryan didn't get to stick it to his old team as the Jets opened up their new home they share with the Giants with a loss to fellow contender Baltimore. Anduan Boldin made Raven fans and Joe Flacco alike grin from ear to ear catching 7 balls for 110 yards while Willis McGahee pounded the ball in from a yard out with 6 seconds left in the 1st half to give the Ravens a 7-6 lead after two Nick Folk field goals. Another former Cowboy kicker; Billy Cundiff nailed a 25 yard field goal to extend the Ravens lead to 10-6 in the 3rd quarter, while Folk would add another field goal to his total to cut the lead back to 1 in the 4th, but that's all the Jets would manage as the Ravens held on for a 10-9 victory.
Next Up
Baltimore @ Cincinnati
New York vs New England

Upset of the Week
Chiefs 21, Chargers 14 - On paper the Chargers took the Chiefs and mopped the floor with them on a rainy night at Arrowhead in Kansas City, Philip Rivers out threw Matt Cassell by 230 yards, even Ryan Mathews had a decent debut for San Diego running for 75 yards. But another rookie had a more impressive play as former Ole Miss Rebel Dexter McCluster had a dazzling 94 yard punt return he took back to the house at the end of the 1st half to give the Chiefs a commanding 21-7 lead. The Chargers would cut the lead to 21-14 late in the 4th on a bomb to Legedu Naanee. Then when all hope seemed lost the Chargers got the ball back and drove all the Chiefs 4 but stalled from there and the Chiefs would pick up a huge win to start out Todd Haley's 2nd season in Kansas City.
Next Up
Chiefs @ Cleveland
Kansas City vs Jacksonville

Friday, September 3, 2010

2010 NFC Prediction and Who's going to Super Bowl XLV?

NFC East
1st. Dallas Cowboys (11-5)- The offensive line could very well be this teams downfall, if this line shows it's age this season Romo could be in for a long season. Trading for Alex Barron was a good trade if you are looking for him to be a back up or a spot starter but believe me if the Cowboys are forced to rely on this guy they'll be in trouble. Felix Jones, Marion Barber, and Tashard Choice form the best 3-headed backfield in the NFL and it's not close so once again that should take pressure off Romo if they can stay healthy.

2nd. Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)- I wouldn't be surprised to see the Eagles win the division. Philly could be a very dangerous team this season, it all comes down to one name Kevin Kolb. He has the weapons to be very successful and has looked the part in brief playing time. DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin are great to have as targets, but then you get the up and coming tight end Brent Celek to throw to, and LeSean McCoy to hand off to, this offense is going to be around for a long time, watch out for the Eagles.

3rd. New York Giants (8-8)- Don't get me wrong I like the Giants, they're a good team, but I think they are just a step below the Cowboys and Eagles, the offense has a great #1 to replace Plaxico in Steve Smith who caught 107 balls last season for 1,220 yards and 7 TD's, the run game looked seriously hurt after "Fire" (Derrick Ward) left for Tampa Bay after the 2009 season as Bradshaw and Jacobs struggled. The defense still has something, but showed they just aren't the same after Steve Spagnuolo left to become the coach of the Rams.

4th. Washington Redskins (6-10)- Both Donovan McNabb and Mike Shannahan bring their great resumes to the Redskins, that said they really don't have much to work with as McNabb has an aging offense to work with as Santana Moss and Joey Galloway form an  aged 1,2 punch. The runningbacks go even older with Clinton Portis, Larry Johnson, and Willie Parker forming the corp. Albert Hanyesworth may or may not head a good defense if the 100 Million Dollar Man can ever ever work his way back up to first string. After all this, get ready for another top 10 pick this season Mr. Snyder.

NFC North
1st. Green Bay Packers (13-3)- Aaron Rodgers finally gets out of the shadow of Brett Favre after 4 seasons of backing him up and what does he do... Just throws for 8,472 yards and 58 touchdowns to 20 interceptions. He has an unbelievably talented set of receivers, with Jennings, Driver, Nelson, and tight ends Jermichael Finley and Donald Lee, while having Ryan Grant to hand off to, with all these toys you could see why Rodgers numbers are so good. With all that I think the road the Super Bowl XLV will come through Lambeau.

2nd. Minnesota Vikings (10-6)- Brett Favre would be happy to see Aaron Rodgers successfully filling his shoes if it didn't mean having to go on the road to start the playoffs. Losing receiver Sidney Rice for half the season hurts this team bad. Shiancoe and Berrian will need to step it up big time if they want to repeat as NFC North champs, and Adrian Peterson will need to hold on to the ball and stop fumbling the ball. Jared Allen leads a defense that should stop a lot of teams and will need to be even better than last season to repeat the teams success in 2009.

3rd. Chicago Bears (7-9)- Jay Cutler has the ability to be a great QB in this league, I would name him as the top QB in the 2006 Draft. It all comes down to how Johnny Knox and Devin Hester perform this season, Knox an undrafted 2nd year player from Abilene Christian will need to be even better this season and I just don't see that happening. The once great defense has let age catch them in a hurry, although bringing in Julius Peppers does give this line some hope for the season.

4th. Detroit Lions (5-11)- Poor Detroit, they have improved so much in the offseason, by leaps and bounds, signing Nate Burleson to pair with Calvin Johnson, and Kyle Vanden Bosch will help along with drafting Jahvid Best and Ndamukong Suh but this team is just a little more pieces away from competing for a playoff spot for the first time since Barry Sanders tore up teams at the Silverdome.

NFC South
1st. New Orleans Saints (13-3)- The defending champs are back are ready to do this thing again. Super Bowl MVP Drew Brees will lead this scary offense once again. Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas will be a very good backfield, and Colston and Henderson will catch many balls with Jeremy Shockey adding some more to the passing game. The big question to me is, can this defense be as good this season as they were last season, if they can I don't see any reason why the Saints can't send the Big Easy back to the Big Game.

2nd. Atlanta Falcons (9-7)- Matt Ryan has shown the ability to be the next big thing in the world of quarterbacks, with Jenkins and White to pass to he shouldn't have a problem repeating his success. While having Michael Turner in the run game is a huge plus. The Falcons defense will be their downfall though and for the 2nd straight season I say the Falcons will miss the playoffs.

3rd. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-11)- Hope is something that Bucs fans haven't had a lot of from the QB position in a while but they finally have it as they have the dark horse QB from the 2009 Draft Josh Freeman. But before he can do anything they'll need to get him a backfield as Cadillac Williams has shown the inability to recover fully from his injury filled 2nd season.

4th. Carolina Panthers (4-12)- No other coach in the NFL has a hotter seat than John Fox, after a dreadful 2009 the Panthers released Jake Delhomme, a fan favorite and heads into this season with Matt Moore and Jimmy Clausen competing for the starting job, their one target Steve Smith is coming off a broken arm, his come back will have much to do with where they end up this season, I just don't see that happening as February 2011 marks a new coaching search for Carolina.

NFC West
1st. San Francisco (10-6)- These aren't your fathers 49ers who one 5 Super Bowls with historic offenses. This 49ers team is built through defense with a guy who could be considered the next Mike Singletary; Patrick Willis, and who happens to be teaching him... Mike Singletary. Alex Smith leads this offense as he tries to shed the bust lable once and for all, he'll have the luxury of Vernon Davis, Michael Crabtree, Tedd Ginn Jr. (who was quite the steal might I add). Watch out the Niners are a good team once again, but this time the defense is what gets it done.

2nd. Arizona Cardinals (7-9)- The Cardinals lost a lot in the offseason, but Kurt Warner is by far the biggest loss. Derek Anderson is more than likely the starter for this team which spells trouble, although they do have an impressive corp of receivers with Larry Fitzgerald heading the group, not having a decent QB will really hurt this team in 2010.

3rd. Seattle Seahawks (5-11)- Pete Carroll trades sun and fun in Southern Cal, for the rains of Seattle as he makes his return to the NFL, the Seahawks had a very good draft, selecting Russell Okung and Earl Thomas in the 1st round. I still think this team is an old team, but Matt Hasselback will attempt to prove he has something left in the tank or else he might be replaced in favor of Charlie Whitehurst.

4th. St. Louis Rams (4-12)- Sam Bradford comes into a major rebuilding project in St. Louis as he'll try to become a franchise QB, he already has fans excited this preseason with an impressive showing but he still has a long way to go before he can get this offense back to a shadow of the Greatest Show on Turf. James Laurinaitis turned heads last season, he'll need to improve along with Chris Long who has yet to prove he can flourish in the blitz style defenses Steve Spagnuolo was supposed to bring in. The Rams are still a year or two away from competing again for a postseason birth but it seems like they are on their way back.

Now that we have rankings and how they'll do, it's time to see who is meeting up in Arlington on February 6th. 

Indianapolis Colts over Green Bay Packers
The Colts just have a sour taste in their mouths after last season ended in a bitter disappointment way by losing to New Orleans 31-17 in Super Bowl XLIV. A healthy Dwight Freeney will be key as he terrorizes Aaron Rodgers all day and Peyton Manning leads the Colts in the passing game enroute to a 31-21 win.

Well that's it for the preseason, I'll be back next week with a recap of the Vikings and Saints. Ladies and gentlemen are you excited about football? It's BACK!!!

Until next time, adios.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Introduction and 2010 AFC Predictions

Hey guys, of course if you clicked on my link you are well aware that my name is Alex, I am the Big Bad NFL and all things soccer blogger. So if you have any questions regarding either one of those subjects I'm your guy, like the US Soccer team bringing back Bob Bradley as their head coach. Now to the thing I was brought on here to do... Prediction time!!!

AFC East
1st. New York Jets (11-5)- It's about time somebody finally dethroned the mighty Patriots from the throne of the AFC East and I think the Jets have what it takes in the sophomore campaign of the Rex Ryan/Mark Sanchez era with the addition of Santonio Holmes and LaDainian Tomlinson on the offense and Antonio Cromartie on the defense this team could contend for the AFC Championship.

2nd. New England Patriots (9-7)- They still have Bill and they still have Tom, that makes the Patriots still, a very dangerous team, but age is catching up to the folks up in Foxborough, and it's catching up quick and the Pats didn't really go out and grab a big name to help slow that so I have a feeling for the 2nd time in 3 seasons come playoff time the Patriots will be on the outside looking in.

3rd. Miami Dolphins (8-8)- Chad Henne looked average in his first season as the Dolphins quarterback throwing 12 touchdowns and 14 interceptions while passing for 2,878 passing yards, but the addition of Brandon Marshall from the Broncos had to have Henne licking his chops and getting ready for the season.

4th. Buffalo Bills (3-13)- The Bills are a step... make that 2... I'll say 3 steps below the rest of the talent in the East, Trent Edwards is not your typical big name quarterback to take you to the playoffs especially when you don't have much talent around him, although the Bills could have quite the 1,2 running back punch in CJ Spiller and Marshawn Lynch, that said Chan Gailey still has his work cut out for him rebuilding the Bills.

AFC North
1st. Baltimore Ravens (12-4)- Last season Joe Flacco along with Ray Rice had break out seasons for the Ravens as they'll look to build off their seasons, but then the Ravens went out and grabbed Flacco a great #1 receiver in Anquan Boldin. Let's not forget the defense who might be old but still has Rey Lewis "quarterbacking" the front 7.

2nd. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6)- Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens, that duo along with Carson Palmer would win you multiple Super Bowls in Madden, but let's see what it can do in real life. Cedric Benson heads the backfield after his career year in 2009, and former Sooner Jermaine Gresham should give Palmer yet another target to throw to.

3rd. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-9)- That's right a team that just 2 seasons ago was at the top of the football world is now struggling to get into the postseason, the Steelers lost some talent. Roethlisberger is lost until at least the 5th game due to his offseason actions, and the loss of wideout Santonio Holmes will hurt the Steelers in 2010.

4th. Cleveland Browns (5-11)- The Browns are a decent team but like the Bills they still have some time until they contend for the playoffs. With Jake Delhomme at quarterback this could be a toss up, but the O-line is still pretty terrible and when your top target is  Josh Cribbs, this could be worse than 5-11.

AFC South
1st. Indianapolis Colts (13-3)- Still the top dogs of the South the Colts will get some really good competition this season from the Titans and Texans, but Manning is still Manning and Reggie Wayne looked to take really good to being Peyton's favorite last season catching 10 touchdowns, with 2nd year former no-name Pierre Garcon looking to build on his strong postseason, and you know Dwight Freeney is hungry after playing through the Super Bowl hurt this team looks dangerous again.

2nd. Houston Texans (11-5)- Matt Schaub to Andre Johnson became a very familiar saying to the ears of Texan fans last season, and with Owen Daniels coming back from a torn ACL this could yet again be a dangerous offense. The defense should also improve with controversial AFC ROY Brian Cushing suspended for the first 4 games I don't think they'll miss him much as they make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.

3rd. Tennessee Titans (10-6)- How will Vince Young do as he take back the reigns of this offense after going 8-2 last season after the Titans dreadful 0-6 start, he'll have to rely on back Chris Johnson who really broke out by netting 2,006 yards last season and 14 touchdowns. The defense is going to have to adjust to not having Kyle Vanden Bosch on the line but for the first time since the early 2000's the offense will be able to pick up the slack.

4th. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-12)- This has nothing to do with the Jags being a bad team, granted they are mediocre at best, they just play in the toughest division in football and will be lucky to win one of their division games, and outside of Maurice Jones-Drew this is an offense that doesn't really have much to offer David Garrard.

AFC West
1st. San Diego Chargers (9-7)- Norv Turner will need to hope that the Chargers front office ends this fued with Vincent Jackson and has him ready to go or else this could be a long season for San Diego same goes for hoping that Ryan Mathews is ready to fill some HEAVY shoes in being the replacement for LT as he shipped north to New York. In the end with the holes that San Diego has, they still have Philip Rivers and they play in a weak division so a 9-7 record should get them the 4th seed and a home game in the 1st round.

2nd. Denver Broncos (7-9)- Let the Tim Tebow era begin... Wait it hasn't begun yet, it's still that boring old Kyle Orton who's starting? The Broncos will miss Brandon Marshall a lot more than they realize. I don't see a magical start to the season like we saw in 2009 as the Broncos disappoint and miss the playoffs again.

3rd. Oakland Raiders (6-10)- There is hope among Raider fans, but it's all about their defense because their offense looks to be bad once again, they did bring in a very underrated quarterback, Jason Campbell but he doesn't have much to throw to with Darrius Heyward-Bey headlining a weak corp, and unless Darren McFadden has a breakout season Raider fans will need to get used to more 3 and outs this season.

4th. Kansas City Chiefs (2-14)- There has to be a bottom dweller... and well it seems that once again the Chiefs get to take that spot again in the AFC cellar, Matt Cassell could easily be mistaken for a rag doll this season as yet again they don't have a lot of talent on the line to protect him, and Dwayne Bowe and Chris Chamber probably won't be that #1 target he desires. Jamaal Charles looks to build on his season though but hasn't looked great so far in training camp or the preseason, all that said this looks like another long season at Arrowhead.

Checkout tomorrow as I'll have my NFC Prediction and I'll even pick who I think is going to meet up at Jerry World next February and who will win Super Bowl XLV.

Until next time adios.