Andrew Hamm: the Bipolar Express

Ruminations on theatre, music, and just about anything else that crosses my bipolar brain.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

NFL Picks Week 2

Welcome back. Last week's tally was as follows:

Peter King: 10-6
Andrew Hamm: 8-8
George Washington: 6-10
Ryan Capps (joining the party late): 9-7

Week two commences to the sound of  Transatlantic's Bridge Across Forever. I'm italicizing King's comments to help them stand out as not-my-writing. 

Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals
  • Peter King: Ravens. Two of the starters on the Cincinnati offensive line that was semi-shredded by the Patriots the other day were guard Nate Livings and tackle Dennis Roland. They'll start Sunday against the rush-heavy Ravens. Neither was drafted out of college. Meanwhile, the sixth pick in the 2009 draft, tackle Andre Smith, played 10 snaps in New England. What is wrong with this picture?
  • Me: Ravens. This will be close, but the Ravens' greater physicality wins the day over Cincy's air attack.
  • George: Ravens.
  • Ryan: Ravens.
 Chicago Bears at Dallas Cowboys
  • Peter King: Cowboys. I am no doctor of football, though I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night. I do know, however, that when you have 71 offensive snaps in a game, as the Cowboys had Sunday night in Washington, and Felix Jones touches the ball on 10 of them, you've made a game-planning error. Free Felix Jones.
  • Me: Bears. This one is probably going to bite me, but I stand behind my prediction that Dallas will be the most disappointing team in the NFC. I don't believe in their O-line, and I don't believe in their coaching staff. I said that last week, and look where it got them.
  • George: Cowboys. He likes the star. I swear, sometimes it's like picking fotball games against a nine-year-old girl.
  • Ryan: Dallas.
Arizona Cardinals at Atlanta Falcons
  • Peter King: Falcons. Midway through the third quarter, on the Cardinals' sideline, this thought goes through Ken Whisenhunt's head: "How many more Derek Anderson series do I have to watch?''
  • Me: Falcons. Only as many as you choose to, Ken.
  • George: Cardinals.
  • Ryan: Falcons.
Buffalo Bills at Green Bay Packers
  • Peter King: Packers. I like Ryan Grant as much as the next guy, but he's a great example of the interchangeability of running backs in the NFL right now. Maybe the Packers will go out and get a Marshawn Lynch -- I don't know -- but they probably won't need him to get to where they're going.
  • Me: Packers. Biggest beat-down of week two.
  • George: Packers.
  • Ryan: Packers.
Philadelphia Eagles at Detroit Lions
  • Peter King: Eagles. Tempting, very tempting, to pick the Lions, and I probably would if Matthew Stafford were playing. But I can't pick Shaun Hill to beat the Philadelphia Eagles when the game really matters.
  • Me: Okay, I'll yield to the temptation and pick the Lions. As a Redskins fan, I have a lot of history of rooting for a scrappy underdog. Also, they've had all week to prepare for Michael Vick, which Green Bay did not.
  • George: Eagles. Because of patriotism.
  • Ryan: Eagles.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Tennessee Titans
  • Peter King: Titans. The other day, Chris Johnson told me he thinks he can "most definitely'' rush for 2,500 yards in a year, and that he would love to see the Titans acquire Albert Haynesworth from Washington. If he breaks a buck and a quarter against the Steelers in this game -- which I think he'll do -- I'm inclined to make him GM Mike Reinfeldt's assistant and let him broker the deal.
  • Me: Titans. No problem, Pete. Tennessee can have his sulky-six-year-old fat behind. And I'd like to see that 2,500 yards.
  • George: Titans.
  • Ryan: Titans.
Kansas City Chiefs at Cleveland Browns
  • Peter King: Chiefs. I have no idea why.
  • Me: Browns. Because it really doesn't matter.
  • George: Browns.
  • Ryan: Chiefs.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers
  • Peter King: Panthers. I'd make the argument that, with Cincinnati and New Orleans on the schedule in the next two weeks, no 0-1 team with the playoff prayer has a bigger game on the docket this weekend than Carolina. Because if you can't beat Tampa Bay at home, you know you're going absolutely nowhere this year.
  • Me: Panthers. This could go either way, and may come down to which sloppy team has the sloppy ball sloppy last.
  • George: Buccaneers.
  • Ryan: Buccaneers.
Miami Dolphins at Minnesota Vikings
  • Peter King: Vikings. Visions of Vincent Jackson are dancing in Brett Favre's head. For now, against the Dolphins, he'll have to settle for Greg Camarillo.
  • Me: Vikings. I really hope the Vikes do get Jackson, so the Redskins don't. We already have enough players (Rex Grossman, Larry Johnson) who I don't like. I'd rather lose without him than win with him.
  • George: Vikings.
  • Ryan: Vikings. I love it when we're unanimous. What a great competition.
Seatte Seahawks at Denver Broncons:
  • Peter King: Broncos. Another one of those I-have-no-clue-who'll-win games. I have a hunch that Robert Ayers will take advantage of the weak edge of the Seattle offensive line to torment Matt Hasselbeck.
  • Me: Seahawks. I feel like the Broncons are going to be either 11-5 or 5-11 this year. Until I have a sense of which, I'm going to tend to pick against them.
  • George: Broncons.
  • Ryan: Seahawks. Broncon pride never.
St. Louis Rams at Oakland Raiders
  • Peter: Raiders. Al Davis can never complain about the schedule again, not when the league gives the Raiders a season-saving parachute in Week 2 by having the Rams drop into the gloom that is enveloping this team.
  • Me: Ohhh, it's sooooo tempting to pick the Rams in this matchup. If St. Louis were to beat anyone early in a rebuilding season, it would be Oakland. But I'm really just picking Raiders dysfunction over Ram rebuilding.
  • George: Raiders.
  • Ryan: Raiders.
New England Patriots at New York Jets
  • Peter: Jets. Rex Ryan wants to win the game so bad I swear he'd suit up and put the big-boy pads on and replace Kris Jenkins if the rules would allow. It'd be more valuable, though, if he could channel his intensity into the head of Mark Sanchez.
  • Me: Patriots. The AFC Disappointment of the Year Jets will be stymied on offense while their defense lets enough big plays through the seams for a 10-point Pats win. I think the worst thing to happen for Mark Sanchez's development as a quarterback was a wide and unfounded public perception that he had a great rookie season.
  • George: Of course he likes the Patriots.
  • Ryan: Patriots. I love it when it's all three of us scrubs picking against the expert. Somebody gonna look stupid...
Houston Texans at Washington Redskins
  • Peter: Texans. Some Hollywood-type with DirecTV and NFL Sunday Ticket is working weekends at the office, with football on his big-screen ... His ears perk up when Ian Eagle, on the CBS telecast, starts talking about this stunning back from Houston, Arian Foster. He hears snippets like "philosophy major from Tennessee'' and "girlfriend's a singer from Germany who studied depth charts to help him pick an NFL team" and "undrafted, adrift 10 months ago on the Texans practice squad'' and "running away with the NFL rushing race'' and thinks: Could Arian Foster be a movie?
  • Me: Texans. If the Redskins had lost last week, I'd be picking them to win this week, but I see letdown--and a 140-yard performance by Foster--in the cards. But a Redskins win, unlike last week, would not surprise me much. They really do look like they're one receiver away from being an elite team, and I wasn't expecting that until next year. By the way, Pete, how about writing a little something about the game? Just a little.
  • George: Redskins. Shameless homer.
  • Ryan: Texans. Ryan sez: "Sorry, the better team from Texas shows up this week."  Hard to argue with him after watching the Redskins' preseason run D.
Jacksonville Jaguars at San Diego Chargers
  • Peter: Chargers. You're surprised by how close of a game I see? Part of the reason is that David Garrard is going to be able to make some plays, based on the meek Charger pass-rush from Monday night. Against a weak Chiefs offensive line, the Chargers managed one sack and one additional quarterback hit. How long will we in the media continue to misstate how dominant the San Diego defensive front is?
  • Me: I also like Garrard, enough to have him as my fantasy backup (mainly because my team was autodrafted and I started with one QB and six RBs and it was pretty much him or Jason Campbell). He won't beat the Chargers, though.
  • George: Chargers.
  • Ryan: Chargers.
New York Giants at Indianapolis Colts
  • Peter: Colts. Can't see the Colts starting 0-2, especially at home, especially against a team with a weak intermediate pass defense, especially with Peyton Manning determined not to lose to his little brother.
  • Me: I really like Manning in this game. I think his team's D will keep consistent enough pressure on Manning to force a late mistake. Meanwhile, Manning's precision attack will control the clock enough to.... Wow, this joke isn't as funny on the screen as it was in my head. Colts.
  • George: Colts.
  • Ryan: Colts.
Music change to Spock's Beard's V.

San Francisco 49ers at New Orleans Saints 
  • Peter: 49ers. File this one under "Super Bowl Champs Always Get Best Effort From Mediocre Teams" department. I just know this -- Mike Singletary will spend this week hammering into his players that this is the most important thing they will ever do in their lives, and some of them will actually believe it.
  • Me: Saints. I agree with Peter that the 49ers will give their best effort of the season. I just don't think it's enough to stop Drew Brees and the best team in the NFL. On the other hand, the Redskins almost beat New Orleans last year...
  • George: Saints.
  • Ryan: Saints.
That's all for now. Stay thirsty, my friends. I'm on a horse.


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