Wednesday, September 10, 2008

NFL: Early thoughts...

I love college football and love and am intrigued by the NFL, since in the NFL the difference between winning and losing is truly a razor's edge. What about Week One of the NFL:

1. Tom Brady's Knee: Forget about New England. They'll be respectable, but they're finished as far as the Super Bowl is concerned. Brady is the straw that stirs the drink. They invested a lot in him. Unfortunately, they never invested a lot in a back up. Because of their easy schedule, they'll rack up some wins, but not a deep playoff run. Open the door a little wider for the rest of the AFC East, including the Jets.

2. Colts-Bears: Colts QB Peyton Manning showed some rust. Colts WR Marvin Harrison showed some age. They'll get better, but how much? The Bears showed their great defense, and an offense, under Kyle Orton, which takes better care of the football. They'll be better this year, but will they be better than the Dallas Cowboys?

3. Dallas-Cleveland: The Cowboys showed they had more talent than anyone in the NFC, but can they keep the peace intact and the law at bay long enough to take advantage of their stacked lineup? The Browns have some talent, but can they meld as a team soon enough and avoid injuries long enough? Dallas has the talent to win the Super Bowl, but with Romo at the helm they've yet to win a playoff game. I saw Romo at Eastern IL against Murray State. He looked great. Unfortunately, he's not playing the Racers anymore. Unless he breaks up with Jessica Simpson, I have to downgrade their chances of winning it all. No boyfriend of Jessica Simpson has ever won a Super Bowl.

4. Titans-Jaquars: Titans coach Jeff Fisher knows how to win in the NFL: stop the run, use the run on offense and don't turn the ball over. The Titans can stop the run. They have a good running game with White and the explosive Johnson. Vince Young has had trouble with turning the ball over. He needs to play more with his heart and instincts and less with his ears and ego. Were all the reports about the cops being called Monday night because he was "down" being overblown? No. He must close his ears and grow up quickly, or move out of the way. He has so much natural talent. He needs to trust it, or move aside. The Titans defense is good enough they can make do with a "game manager" as opposed to a "game-breaker." It takes a tough personality to play QB in the NFL. We'll see soon enough whether Young has it, or not. Young should talk to Tavarous Jackson, who has responded so well to the pressure. When Young returns, don't be surprised if he has a hard time unseating Collins or Simms for the starting job. It's a shame because he has more natural talent than either. So much of the job, though, flows through what's in the mind.

5. Green Bay-Minnesota: Aaron Rogers got off to the best start possible for him, Will he sustain it? He'll have to, or the Farve comparisons will come quickly and rightly so. Can Minnesota still make the Super Bowl? Yes, as along as Jackson can manage the game, not turn the ball over and the defense keep them in it.
6. San Diego-Carolina: The Chargers' big stars, outside of Thomlinson, all have health issues. The Panthers appear to be healthy (especially DeLohome) and perhaps are the team we expected a year ago. Either team could have won. The one that made the last play did.

*The answers to these questions and more coming as the season unfolds.....ain't it great!

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