The 2017 NFL season is upon us, and never in modern times has America been so uncomfortable with the NFL and our collective enjoyment of the game. A combination of incidents of unsavory (and sometimes criminal) player behavior off the field, sideline protests, and growing concerns over brain injuries associated with football, have led to reduced TV ratings and in many cases moral conflict among those of us who continue to watch. And the league’s predictably inconsistent and often irrational responses to these issues has done nothing to assuage our apprehensions.
This year’s poster boy for bad behavior is Dallas Cowboys star running back, Ezekiel Elliott. The NFL served him a six game suspension for allegedly beating up his girlfriend when he was in college. And there was another alleged incident a few months ago of him punching someone in the face in a bar. Elliott has taken the unusual step of filing a restraining order against the league (I guess to prevent them from further questioning him?), as he has appealed his suspension. Whether some or all of these allegations are true (it’s virtually impossible that he’s completely innocent), it’s clear that Elliott has some problems that need to be addressed, though it would be surprising if the league were able to facilitate that in any constructive or effective way.
Without getting too deep into the weeds here, let’s just say Elliott is in real danger of ending up like Ray Rice, who will forever be remembered as the guy who KO’d his girlfriend on an elevator, effectively ending his career, rather than the guy who converted one of the most unlikely 4th and 29 situations in a late season game that turned out to be the difference between the Ravens making or missing the playoffs the year they won Super Bowl XLVII.
Speaking of players who have effectively ended their careers, last year Colin Kaepernick chose to protest police brutality against people of color by sitting or taking a knee during the National Anthem before each game. He also wore socks during a practice with pictures of police officers as pigs. Kaepernick succeeded in drawing more attention to systemic racism in the US, but he also made himself a lightning rod for those Americans who feel his protest is un-patriotic, misguided, or self-serving. He then opted out of the last year of his contract with the 49ers, and has been unable to land a spot on any roster since. Several other players have followed his lead and taken a knee or a seat during the anthem, and have drawn almost no criticism and have kept their jobs. What’s really notable here is there hasn’t been any criticism of the many thousands of fans in attendance at each game who choose to urinate, defecate, buy beer, or play with their phones during the anthem.
Some argue that Kaepernick’s play in recent years, combined with the “baggage” he brings, has led to his unemployment. But there are six teams starting QBs on Sunday who are clearly inferior to Kaepernick, and he’d be an upgrade at back up QB for virtually every team in the league. It’s valid that in some cases he’d command too much money as a back up, or in Seattle’s case, he wanted a chance to compete for the starting job, which was a no-go, but there can’t be any doubt that the NFL team owners discomfort with Kaepernick’s public stance on these social issues is the primary reason he’s not suiting up this weekend.
As for the CTE issue, I find the outrage to be a little disingenuous. While it’s absolutely true that knowing the details of how playing football impacts the brain is alarming, and will undoubtedly lead to many parents across the country making different (better?) choices for their children, the NFL is composed of grown men, and anyone who doesn’t understand that bashing your head against someone else’s for sixty minutes every Sunday is not good for your brain is either stupid or willfully ignorant. Not that I don’t agree the NFL ought to take better care of their players during and after their careers, especially since it’s such a lucrative endeavor for team owners, and I’ll be surprised if there aren’t some fundamental changes in how the game is played in the coming years, but the reality is that the violence and danger of football are part of what makes it so popular. And the owners know this. Everyone knows this. If there is alarm that TV ratings were down last year, just wait till they strap flags around the player’s waists before the coin toss.
With all of that unpleasantness behind us (or all around us), let’s talk about the 2017 season and what’s going to happen on the field to each team, along with their pre-season Super Bowl odds, and let’s start at the bottom…
Jets: Vegas has these guys at 1,000:1 to go all the way. Save your money, these guys are not the 1999 Rams. Though I’d be curious what the odds of the Jets going 6-10 are, because that is best case scenario. If they split with the Bills and Dolphins (totally possible), then beat the Browns in Cleveland, the Jaguars and Chargers at home, and if the season finale at New England turns out to be meaningless for the Pats, you’ve got 6-10. That’s as bright as the ray of sunshine for the Jets is, because this team is awful and management knows it and isn’t even trying. Some are predicting an 0-16 year for the Jets. I’m thinking they win a game or two. Also, the only thing that would be worse for Colin Kaepernick than being blackballed by the league, would be if the Jets had signed him.
Bills: At 200:1, Buffalo is a better bet than the Jets, but that’s not saying much. The management in Buffalo seems to pretend to care about winning only slightly more than the Jets owners, but as the only NFL team without a playoff appearance in the 21st century, the Bills have been doing this too long to be offended by the upstarts. To be bad for this long, it takes more than just a series of bad drafts and illogical signings, it takes a level of buy-in to poor organizational philosophy at the managerial level you don’t often see in sports. A bad owner can tank a franchise for a couple of generations (I’m looking at you, Dan Snyder), but you need something even larger than that to bounce between being lousy and almost mediocre from one year to the next for almost 20 years. Something supernatural, perhaps a curse. I think there is something like that at work in Buffalo, and it’s related to “wide right,” four consecutive Super Bowl losses, and O.J. Simpson. And I think it will be a while before it’s fully understood (if ever), or it ends (when flags are tied about the waists of players before the coin toss).
The 100:1 Club includes the Browns, 49ers, Bears, Jaguars, Dolphins, Rams, Washington, Lions, and Colts. I thought this would be the best Browns team we’ve seen in a while, but then they let go of their best defensive player, CB Joe Haden, who was signed by their week 1 opponent, Pittsburgh. Although this team has some talent on both sides of the ball (compared to previous years), ownership clearly does not give a crap. Maybe they just like all the press they get for stockpiling draft picks each year and then using three different QBs of various levels of ineptitude? It’s a mystery almost as deep and murky as the forces at work in Buffalo. Like the Jets, the best the Browns can do is 6-10, even though I like DeShone Kizer. Remember, they are paying Brock Osweiler over $15 million this year to sit on the bench in Denver. They are so screwed. They will probably win 4 games.
Stephen Jackson knows your pain…
The 49ers are so bad, Colin Kaepernick chose not to play for them, even though he had to know there was a strong possibility no other team would sign him this year. Brian Hoyer will be their starting QB. Or is it Bobby Hoying? It doesn’t matter. The sad part about this is they have one of the best RBs in the league in Carlos Hyde, a punishing runner in the mold of Marshawn Lynch, whose career will end up looking like that of Stephen Jackson, if he doesn’t find a way to get off this crappy team. On defense, the 49ers also have a good corps of linebackers, but that won’t matter when they’re always playing from 17 points behind at halftime. They’ve got 3-13 written all over them.
This is going to be a tough year for the Bears. Rookie QB Mitchell Trubisky looked good in the pre-season, but will start the year holding a clipboard while Mike Glennon teaches him how to go 0-7. If Trubisky is smart, he will spend those seven weeks watching the opposing QBs, five of whom have played in the Super Bowl, and three of whom have actually won it. Then he will trot out onto the field after having played in only 12 NCAA games in his life, and he will be very rudely welcomed to the NFL. If he’s got enough toughness in him, he will get through the second half of the Bears schedule, which is a bit kinder than the first half, and actually win a couple of games. 2-14 seems about right, but if Trubisky survives without fracturing his psyche, the Bears might be able to turn it around next year.
The Jaguars are another shitty franchise that seems to think stockpiling draft picks and then picking lousy QBs is the name of the game. This is a team to whom once nearly-great players like Chris Ivory go to die (in a pile of money). That said, the Jaguars have a soft schedule and a promising rookie RB in Leonard Fournette, so I think they’ll surprise enough teams to go 8-8.
I almost called the “100:1 Club,” the “Where’s Waldo Club,” since almost all of these teams would be upgraded at QB by signing a certain guy, but two of them have superior QBs to Waldo, and two others are investing in rookie QBs. That said, the Dolphins have no excuse. Jay Cutler turned down a lucrative broadcasting career to sign an even more lucrative one year deal with the Dolphins ($10 million), then made the hilariously honest comment, “you don’t have to be in good shape to be a QB.” If you play Cutler’s style, he’s correct. You basically take the snap, take two steps back and hand the ball to someone else and then watch the play, or take five steps back and throw it downfield. Yes, you get knocked down here and there, but that’s what painkillers are for. This was almost as funny as former heavyweight champion George Foreman coming out of a ten year retirement in his mercurial pursuit to regain the heavyweight title, and selling himself with self-effacing fat jokes. What is most funny was Cutler’s comment that his wife suggested he play another year. Widely regarded as one of the most disliked teammates in the league, he inadvertently admits his wife doesn’t care all that much for him either. In any case, I smell 6-10 all over this team.
The Rams have some impressive offensive weapons in Todd Gurley, Tavon Austin, and Sammy Watkins, but I’m not a believer in Jared Goff. I am enough of a believer in their defense to expect them to surprise a few teams along the way and win some games that maybe they shouldn’t. 6-10 seems reasonable, 7-9 possible.
Washington has the worst owner in all of pro sports not named James Dolan. I’m not a Kirk Cousins fan, but he’s going to put up pretty good numbers on a losing team and make a lot of money being mediocre somewhere else for the next few years, while Washington will continue to flounder and not have a QB. And Snyder will be excoriated for not signing Cousins to a long-term deal, even though Cousins is nothing special. I hate this team so much I don’t even know which guy to hate more. 6-10.
The Lions are one of those teams I inexplicably have a soft spot for. Maybe it’s because they always seem to have one or two pieces of the puzzle (when they aren’t historically bad), play in exciting games, and always fall short in a city that itself is one of the saddest stories in the America of the last 50 years. Or maybe they just have the coolest helmet in all of football? I don’t know. But for me, they are the not very attractive woman with whom I inexplicably have chemistry. She talks a little too loud, sometimes dresses so poorly even I notice it, or has a weird mole in a prominent place, but for some reason I’m mildly aroused whenever she’s within four feet of me. Which indirectly explains why I might be tempted to lay some money on this team at 100:1. More precisely, they have a lot of not-quite elite weapons on offense, and a decent defense, and only need an injury to Aaron Rodgers to find themselves atop the NFC North. Can they go to Seattle and beat the Seahawks in the post-season? No, but maybe someone else manages to do that for them, and they find themselves in the Super Bowl against someone who knocked off the Patriots. I’ve talked myself into this in the same way I’d talk myself into sneaking off to Vegas with the aforementioned woman for a weekend that would ultimately be disappointing and shameful (and it would be entirely my fault). This is an uncomfortably revealing way of saying this team is going to go 10-6 and land a wild card spot.
The Colts are the last member of this club, and perhaps the worst. I’m a big Andrew Luck fan, but I’m worried about this shoulder injury and his career. I can’t recall any major star having an injury with such murky prognoses in terms of when he might return. Without Luck, these guys might win as many as four games. This is just sad.
Marvin Lewis’s January face.
The Bengals, at 80:1, are a terrible bet. After Marvin Lewis put together an impressive squad in the early part of this decade, and made them perennial post-season participants, this underachieving team has just ended an era of potential greatness. For the last six years the Bengals have had a sometimes great defense, a really good offensive line, some very explosive skill players and playmakers, and Andy Dalton. If Carson Palmer had just been a little more patient and stayed in town, this team may have won a Super Bowl.
Or at least played in one.
They definitely would’ve won a playoff game.
Probably two or three.
Anyway, this team was stacked, and a mixture of poor play calling in the post-season, poor team discipline, and poor QB play, sank the Bengals. Now they’ve lost some of their better players to age, free agency, or complacency, and Marvin Lewis has become a very poor man’s Marv Levy. They still have many talented players, and Joe Mixon might make a splash at some point this year, and they suffered a lot of injuries during their 6-9-1 2016 campaign, so they could have a bounce back year, but as long as Dalton is at the helm, this team won’t get past the first round of the playoffs. And I’m not even sure they make the playoffs this year. 9-7 seems about right, and if they can squeeze out another victory somewhere along the line, maybe they get a wild card. But at best, they are first round fodder for somebody.
Melvin Gordon is set up for a big year.
The 60:1 Chargers could surprise some people, as a coaching change will lead to a more run-oriented offense, which will benefit both Philip Rivers and third year RB Melvin Gordon. They’ve also bolstered their o-line with Russell Okung and some recent draft picks, and their defense will be improved as well. After two consecutive losing seasons, I expect improvement from this team, but they are a year away. An 8-8 season wouldn’t surprise me, but if they can beat Denver this week and build on that, I wouldn’t rule out 9-7 or even 10-6, especially if the Chiefs, Raiders, or Broncos suffer a key injury or two.
You know things are bad when I have to post a picture of your kicker.
The Ravens are a bit overrated at 50:1. They don’t appear to have a much of a running game, and their receiving corps is average. And their defense is nothing special. Their kicker, Justin Tucker, is the best in the league. Good for him. I think 7-9 is about the most we can expect, 6-10 a lot more likely.
This guy is still making an impact at RB at 34 years old.
The Cinderella Club consists of a bunch of 40:1 teams, some of whom wouldn’t be horrible bets to win it all, if you’re looking to cash in at some long odds. The Eagles look pretty hot to those who believe Carson Wentz is going to have a break out year. Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith are both great pick ups at WR, and Zach Ertz is one of the best TEs in the game, but a running game that is counting on consistent production from LaGarrette Blount, 34 year old Darren Sproles, and a couple of rookies is a running game that is counting on Carson Wentz to be the next Dan Marino. Their defense won’t be very good, and they play in a division with at least two teams that are better than them. Like the Ravens, 7-9 seems like the best Eagles fans can hope for, with 6-10 being a better bet.
Watson is going to be good, but perhaps not good enough in 2017.
The Texans are a slightly better 40:1 bet than the Eagles, as they play in a crappy division, have a defense that will keep them in every game, and if they don’t let Deshon Watson learn to lose from Tom Savage for too many weeks, maybe they’ll find some Dak Prescott-esque magic. They have a better team than Philly, but Philly’s best QB is the starter, while the Texans best QB is not. While 7-9 is where the smart money is, if Watson gets in there and proves to be as good as many think, they could go 10-6 and win the division.
This guy is destined to be the most important acquisition of 2017.
The Buccaneers are a team that pretty much everyone loves this year, and I’m part of pretty much everyone. If the Falcons are undone by a Super Bowl hangover, and the Panthers don’t recover from theirs and re-emerge as a top team, I can see the Bucs going 12-4 and winning the NFC South. Worst case scenario is hurricane Irma fucks with them a bit early, and they finish 10-6 with a wild card spot. Jameis Winston is primed for a great sophomore season, Mike Evans will be extremely productive, DeSean Jackson will scorch many a secondary, and their defense, which was already pretty good, just picked up TJ Ward from the Broncos. Ward is the kind of guy who can make a huge difference with his playmaking ability and Super Bowl ring. The Bucs are a very solid 40:1 bet.
This was a looooong time ago…
The Vikings strike me as very mediocre. And I don’t like Sam Bradford. So let’s just say 8-8 and move on.
He knows better than anybody how chilly it can get in Denver.
If the Broncos had not released TJ Ward, I’d say they are one Colin Kaepernick away from being Super Bowl contenders. Their defense is that good, and their offense has enough weapons with that defense to make them competitive with anybody. But players were very outspoken about how they felt about losing TJ Ward, and it’s bound to express itself on the field in a way Broncos fans won’t like. They also won’t like losing a lot of 13-10 games this year, which is what’s going to happen early, then the defense will get dispirited and play below their talent level because why not. A team that had a real shot at 11-5 and contending for a championship will go 9-7 and further disintegrate.
He looks like someone’s dad in Arizona, dressed for game day in front of the TV.
The Cardinals are the final member of the Cinderella Club, and a lot will be determined by how they perform in Detroit on Sunday. If they can go on the road and win a shootout in a dome (or better yet, shut down an explosive offense on the road), this will be a team to watch out for. I don’t think in even the best case they can win the NFC West, but they could go 10-6, maybe even 11-5, and be the wild card team no one wants to play. Carson Palmer is 37, and he isn’t the only older guy on the roster, but they have a lot of weapons on offense and a more than solid defense. I can’t quite see them winning three road games in a row in the playoffs, but I suppose it’s not impossible. And as always, a key injury to their division rival could open a door that will make a 40:1 odds seem like a steal.
Everyone’s expecting a big year from McCaffrey.
The Panther are a very risky 30:1. They have two very good teams in their division, and the Saints can still engage almost anyone in a shootout and beat them. So it’s an uphill climb, but Carolina still has a lot of top-flight talent on their roster, and have added rookie RB Christian McCaffery, who should be the most productive back the Panthers have had since… maybe ever. A lot depends on how Cam Newton bounces back from last year’s disappointing Super Bowl hangover season. If he appears discouraged, thing could get ugly, though for a team this talented, 8-8 is probably as ugly as it’ll get. Along with McCaffery, Newton still has Greg Olson at TE, and Kelvin Benjamin and Brandon LeFell at WR. If the line can protect him consistently, they will put up a lot of points.
On defense, Julius Peppers returning to Carolina for his 16th season could inspire an already impressive unit to great things. On a side note, I do worry Luke Kuechly will suffer a life-ending brain injury. He plays as recklessly as anyone, and has already had a head injury so severe he left the field in tears on a cart. They look like a 10-6, maybe 11-5 team, and this might be the kind of year in the NFC where that one game difference decides whether you play in January or not.
Remember Emmitt Smith in Arizona? OJ in SF? Tony Dorsett in Denver?
I don’t know how the Saints are at 25:1. Did they pick up TJ Ward? Do people think Adrian Peterson has some greatness left? Like an entire season of greatness? The Saints have gone 7-9 the last three seasons, and with their division as stacked as it is, I think 7-9 is about their ceiling. Let’s say 6-10.
The Chiefs are also 25:1, which is weird because they are a lot better than the Saints, but there it is. You have to expect that kind of disrespect for the Andy Reid/Alex Smith tandem. Reid is so in love with the short passing game, he under-utilizes Tyreek Hill in the passing game, and sticks with a QB who doesn’t really throw downfield very well. I would love to see Reid switch to rookie Patrick Mahomes II (why not “Jr”? He’s not a rock band’s second album). But Andy Reid is a guy who had a stacked roster in Philadelphia for a decade, brought them to the Super Bowl once, and lost. He’s won a lot of games because he’s always had a lot of talent on the field, but he’s not a very good coach. The Chiefs also have an excellent defense, but so did the Eagles ten years ago. The Chiefs will go 10-6, maybe 11-5, make the playoffs, and then lose. It’s as predictable as a New Year’s Day hangover.
MVP? Not yet.
The Titans are another team everyone loves, as their 20:1 odds indicate. I’m a little less in love with them than most. Granted, Marcus Mariota is primed for a great year, he has a really solid running game with DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, he has a slew of young talent to throw to downfield, and they play in the crappiest division in the league. Their defensive line is really good, they were second against the run last year, but their secondary is suspect, so not too many teams will be running all that much, except to kill the clock late in the game. They could finish as high as 13-3 with their schedule, but these guys are going to be a lot like the Colts in Andrew Luck’s first few seasons, when he went 11-5 every year, made the playoffs, then got exposed as a good team with a great QB who fattened up on lesser competition. The Titans will be good this year, they will win the division, but they are still a year away from anyone putting September money on to win the Super Bowl.
Everything depends on how he responds to this.
The Falcons, at 16:1 are legit, but they didn’t do much to improve their defense, and that crushing collapse (especially in terms of play-calling) in the Super Bowl is bound to hang heavy around their necks. Despite all their talent on offense (and they are going to score a shit ton of points this year), I don’t think the coaches are going to learn from their Super Bowl mistakes. In fact, often coaches will double down on that sort of thing to prove it wasn’t their fault. The Falcons will be fun to watch, but I think 9-7 is very likely. Though they could totally prove me wrong and plow through the season with a gigantic chip on their shoulder and return the Super Bowl. But I just don’t see it.
How are the Giants at 12:1 to win the Super Bowl? Yes, they have a good defense, and yes, Eli Manning has won two Super Bowls that only Giants fans thought they would win, but they don’t really have a running game and their offensive line is still problematic. I could see putting them in the Cinderella Club at 40:1, but I think a lot of people have fallen for Odell Beckham, Jr (to his credit, not Odell Beckham II) the same way a lot of guys fall for the slightly inebriated, busty blond in the too-tight blouse and short skirt who is forward with every guy in a way that you know is only partially due to alcohol. Yes, he’s a supreme talent, and he can captivate the entire room with the way he moves, and the camera loves him for it, and for his erratic personality, but I believe this camera-love for Beckham makes people forget about the o-line and running game issues when they evaluate this team. I see them in the 9-7, 10-6 neighborhood.
Who’s gonna be MVP? This Guy!
The Cowboys are a more reasonable 12:1 bet, as they are a more balanced team. Sure, Dak Prescott could experience a sophomore slump (though he just as easily could have an MVP season), the Ezekiel Elliott suspension and lingering aura of ugliness could affect the team adversely, and the defense is still not as solid as the offense, particularly in the secondary; but I expect Dez Bryant to have a great year, Darren McFadden to be more than adequate during Elliott’s suspension, and the defense to be better than last year. This is a team with a legitimate shot of getting to and winning the Super Bowl. But if all the negatives listed above come to fruition, they could find themselves at 9-7, watching football on TV in January. But I think 12-4 is much more likely.
The fact he even considered this in the off-season should concern Steelers fans.
The Steelers are 10:1 and a solid Super Bowl bet. I don’t think they’ll be able to get past the Patriots as long as Tom Brady is on the field, but a bet that’s counting on only one or two breaks over a five month span isn’t too bad at 10:1. Maybe Brady gets hurt, maybe someone else finds a way to knock them off in the divisional round, who knows? Anyway, the Steelers are stacked on offense, and less stacked on defense, and their kicker isn’t very good, but they’ll put up a lot of points, and even on the Sundays when they give up too many, the other team will know they’ve been in a fight. If Martavis Bryant can lay off the bong for a few months, Le’Veon Bell can remain healthy, and Ben Roethlisberger can keep thoughts of retirement out of his mind, this team could go all the way. Picking up Joe Haden was a great move, exactly the opposite of what Denver did with TJ Ward. This team knows it’s good and wants to win now. They will win the AFC North, I see them at 11-5, maybe 12-4. Unfortunately for them, that won’t be enough for home field advantage, but they will get a playoff bye week.
The dark horse for ROY.
The Seahawks have been a solid bet (of this kind) for the last five years or so, and picking up Sheldon Richardson from the Jets has only increased the strength of an already fearsome defensive line. The offensive line is still not great, and they lost their starting left tackle, George Fant, for the year with a knee injury a few week ago, but they look to have pretty effective trio of RBs with Eddie Lacy, Thomas Rawls, and rookie Chris Carson, who may be the best of the bunch and be the starter before November. If the Seahawks finally fully exploit the downfield talents of Jimmy Graham, they will be very tough to beat. 13-3 is totally reasonable, and if that’s good enough for home field advantage, pencil them in for another Super Bowl appearance.
Beast Mode has a better chance than AP of being an impactful, aged RB.
The Raiders are at 8:1, and they’re loaded with talent on both sides of the ball. Definitely legit contenders, but I’m curious to see how Derek Carr looks in a game that counts. And as much as I love Marshawn Lynch, a 31 year old RB who runs with his style has to worry you a bit over a 16 game season. The Raiders will undoubtedly score a ton of points, and get a lot of sacks, and they’ll probably go 12-4 or 11-5 and win the AFC West, but unless they get home field advantage in the playoffs, I can’t see them beating New England or Pittsburgh.
The Packers are also at 8:1, and they are very talented, have perhaps the best QB in the game right now, and a substantial home field advantage, but I think Seattle is better, and maybe Dallas and Tampa Bay are too. We’ll find out soon enough on two of those counts, as the Packers host Seattle this week, and travel to Dallas in week 5. We’ll have to wait until early December to find out about the Bucs. Everyone knows about the Packers downfield passing game, but their RB corps consists of Ty Montgomery, a fullback, and three rookies. Montgomery isn’t a big back, if he gets hurt, Packers fans better hope those rookies are good. Of course their receiving corps is the best in the league with Jordy Nelson, Davante Adams, Randall Cobb, Martellus Bennett and Richard Rodgers. Teams that can beat the Packers will need to be able to cover those guys and get fast pressure on the QB. It’s a tall order. Their defense isn’t as impressive as their offense, but it’s still pretty good. This team will definitely contend, but until I see them beat Seattle in week 1, I think they’re a bit oversold. But they’ll be 11-5, maybe 12-4, maybe even 13-3, which would give them the edge they’d need to get back to the Super Bowl.
The Patriots odds are currently 11:4. And that’s without Julian Edelman. What can you say about this team that hasn’t already been said? They are a prohibitive favorite for good reason. They look like a 13-3, maybe 14-2 team, and some are even predicting 16-0. You know Belichick doesn’t want to hear that,
but it’s not impossible.
- Green Bay
- Tampa Bay
- New England
- Kansas City
Super Bowl Prediction
I see the Patriots getting back to the Super Bowl and facing the Seattle Seahawks. This time, the Seahawks don’t start celebrating early, and use the painful experience of Super Bowl XLIX to remain focused and vanquish more than an external enemy, but an internal haunt.
Week 1 Picks
NE -9 vs Kansas City (readers will have to trust I make my Thursday picks before the game, as AMOS won’t be posted until Friday morning)
BUFFALO -9 vs Jets
Atlanta -7 at CHICAGO
HOUSTON -5.5 vs Jacksonville
Philadelphia -1 at WASHINGTON
DETROIT +2 vs Arizona
TENNESSEE -2 vs Oakland
CINCINNATI -3 vs Baltimore
Pittsburgh -9 at CLEVELAND
RAMS -3.5 vs Indianapolis
Seattle +3 at GREEN BAY
Carolina -5.5 at SAN FRANCISCO
Giants +4 at DALLAS
New Orleans +3.5 at MINNESOTA
Chargers +3.5 at DENVER