September 6, 2013

Sorry, Colts fans + NFL Week 1 picks

by Dan Bilicki In: Football, Picks

You have to feel bad for Colts fans. Peyton Manning’s best game ever just came with him wearing a Denver Broncos jersey.

Manning threw for an astounding 462 yards and seven TDs in Thursday night’s season opener against the defending champion Ravens. So much for that rebuilt defence, eh?

And those worries about Denver’s pass rush without Von Miller? Well the Broncos got to Joe Flacco four times while the most expensive man in the NFL was also picked off twice – one that should have been returned for a TD.

Why wasn’t it returned for a TD? Because idiotic linebacker Danny Trevathan felt the need to start celebrating early, dropping the ball before even crossing the goal line.

But back to Manning. How great do his fantasy owners feel after last night? Any time you can get a good lead going before the Sunday games even start is a bonus, but for him to put up 46 points? That’s outstanding. It’s actually the second-highest fantasy game from a QB since 2000, trailing Michael Vick’s 47-point Monday nighter in 2010.

He obviously won’t throw seven TDs every game, but you have to admit that Manning looks MVP calibre yet again.

The lines are from Vegas and the home teams are in CAPS.

New England -10 over BUFFALO

This is how sad the Buffalo Bills season is going to be. They are double-digit underdogs at their home opener, even with their first-round quarterback starting. The Pats should roll here.

Tennessee +7.5 over PITTSBURGH

I have the Titans down as one of the more surprising teams in the AFC and the Steelers as one of the more disappointing.

Atlanta +3 over NEW ORLEANS

When Vegas favours the home team by three, that’s its way of saying the teams are pretty even. I don’t buy that sentiment with these two teams. The Falcons are the better team and only got better in the off-season. The Saints also improved, but they’re still a step or two behind their rivals.

Tampa Bay -3.5 over NEW YORK JETS

The Jets are bad – really bad. The Bucs greatly improved their pass defence, which was one of the league’s worst, by acquiring Darrelle Revis – the Jets best player. How long until Rex Ryan quits or is fired?

Kansas City -3.5 over JACKSONVILLE

When Blaine Gabbert is playing hurt, that’s almost as sure of a win as there is. The Chiefs should take Andy Reid’s debut.

Cincinnati +3 over CHICAGO

I’m interested to see what the Bears will do with Lovie Smith at the helm, especially on defence. The Bengals are getting some real Super Bowl hype and a win here could go a long way for them.

CLEVELAND (pk) over Miami

This one is looking like the yawner of the week. If you’re stuck watching these two uninspiring teams, I feel sorry for you. I like under-rated Browns to take the opener.

Seattle -3.5 over CAROLINA

The only thing that the Panthers have in their favour going against the Seahawks in this one is that the visitors have to make a cross-country flight and play a 1 p.m. ET start. But that shouldn’t weigh on them too much.

Minnesota +5 over DETROIT

The Vikings worked on their two big areas of concerns in the off-season: Their receivers and defence. The Lions barely even looked at the holes in their secondary. I think five points is too many for this division matchup.

INDIANAPOLIS -10.5 over Oakland

The Raiders are without a doubt the worst team in the NFL. The Colts aren’t going to be anything special like last year, but they’re still at least 10 points better than Oakland.

ST. LOUIS -4.5 over Arizona

This is actually a nice battle of potential up-and-coming teams as opposed to the yawners of recent years. Whichever team wins this one could ride that momentum for a while.

SAN FRANCISCO -4.5 over Green Bay

Have the Packers finally learned how to deal with the read-option? I’m not sure, but we’ll certainly find out here. The Niners should be able to abuse the Packers’ already-beat-up offensive line and hurry Aaron Rodgers.

DALLAS -3 over New York Giants

Believe it or not, the Cowboys are getting some Super Bowl buzz. Also, DeMarco Murray isn’t injured yet, so Dallas will actually have a running game to work with.

Philadelphia +3 over WASHINGTON

Nobody knows what to honestly expect from the Eagles in Week 1, leaving their division rivals scratching their heads coming up for this one. RG3 will look good, but the Eagles will eke this one out.

Houston -4 over SAN DIEGO

Starting past 10 p.m. on Monday night, it’s a good thing that east coast Chargers fans will probably fall asleep halfway through this beatdown.

This week: 0-1

Last season: 132-116-8

Playoffs: 8-3

2011 season: 131-120-2

2010 season: 138-110-5

1 Comment

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