NFL Previw and Predictions

The NFL season is finally here and officially started with the Kickoff Special last night where the Denver Broncos took care of the Baltimore Ravens 49-27.  The main star of that one being a star of old, Peyton Manning throwing for 450+ yards and 7 TDs, showing everyone he has a lot longer left in the league and lot left in him.  Last night was a strong indication that the Broncos are for real this year but it still is only one game and there is a lot of football to be played.

This new season brings about hope for, well most every team, and just a new football season brings joy to everyone no matter how bad their team is.  There will be really good teams, really bad teams, frustratingly average teams and always a surprise team or two.  So what teams will win their division and who will go the playoffs and win the Super Bowl you might be asking?  Well your in luck because I’m going to tell you how it will all go down.

Division Champions

AFC East-New England Patriots

Tom Brady still there and the mastermind Bill Belichick still running things makes this an easy pick for the Patriots to retain their AFC East division crown.  There will be too much offense even without the weapons for the other teams in the division to matchup.  Their defense will be the unsung hero of the season, and their continued dominance of offense will be too much for division foes.

AFC North-Cincinnati Bengals

I am liking what Cincy has got going on.  They will have a formidable offense led by Dalton and A.J. Green and their defense is probably their strongest point actually.  Led by their star DT Geno Atkins and star cornerback Leon Hall, the Bengals defense will look to put the clamps on every one they play.  Matching up with their division opponents is very favorable considering it’s against all teams that aren’t known for their offense.  Cincy will edge out the Ravens and claim the division crown.

AFC South-Houston Texans

Texans are the most balanced team in the division, and they certainly have the best defense.  As long as Matt Schaub, Andre Johnson, and Arian Foster can stay healthy, they will be able to take their division.  They will receive stiff competition from the Colts but it won’t be enough.  They will use their balanced offensive attack and their stingy defense to overmatch their opponents.  They will split with the Colts in the season but that won’t hurt them in winning the division.

AFC West-Denver Broncos

Peyton Manning will look to bring the Super Bowl Trophy back to the Mile High City Picture from sports-lite.com
Peyton Manning will look to bring the Super Bowl Trophy back to the Mile High City
Picture from sports-lite.com

As we saw last night, they are truly going to be a powerhouse this year.  Peyton looked better than he ever has, gasp!, and there are so many weapons for Peyton to throw too.  I mean he threw 3 of his TD passes to TE Julius Thomas and WR Andre Caldwell.  He didn’t even hit Welker, D. Thomas, or Decker for one until he finally found Welker for his 4th TD pass of the night.  Point being, they are loaded and their offense will be more than good enough to cover up for some holes on defense.  They will be way too much to handle for any of their division opponents.

NFC East-Dallas Cowboys

A surprise pick I would say, but something is telling me to not go with the obvious RGIII led Redskins.  I think Romo has been playing his best lately in his career and it will continue this season.  Only this time he will get some help from his defense.  The Cowboys will look to generate a lot of offense and hope to get a lot of it from their running back Demarco Murray, as long as he can stay healthy.  This division will be highly contested but the Cowboys will edge the Redskins out.

NFC North-Green Bay Packers

This will be another shootout of a division.  The Packers have to get better on defense and Clay Matthews will see to it that that does happen.  QB Aaron Rodgers will see to it that the offense doesn’t slow down one bit and look to continue his dominance in the league.  They will have to beat out other offensive power teams in their division but the Packers are the best overall team and take the division again this year.

NFC South-Atlanta Falcons

Matt Ryan will look to guide the Falcons to the Super Bowl. Picture from www.tumblr.com
Matt Ryan will look to guide the Falcons to the Super Bowl.
Picture from http://www.tumblr.com

Atlanta is the only sure thing in this division.  Although their offensive line looked soft in the preseason, they should be just fine when the real games get kicked off.  They have too many offensive weapons to not win the division and I think that their defense is an underrated one.  Their offense will carry them to the postseason though and the question will be if their defense can help them out enough in the postseason.  Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Roddy White, Steven Jackson, Tony Gonzalez.  That’s all you need to know to tell you whose going to win the division.

NFC West-San Francisco 49ers

This will be a tough, tough division for any of the teams to win a lot of games within.  The 49ers though have the best offense and best defense in their division, just by a small margin though over the Seahawks.  Kaepernick will be a stud again for them and he’ll get a full season, just think of the numbers he could put up and the excitement he can create.  Their defense will again be stoutly led by future Hall of Famer Patrick Willis.  They will survive their tough division and schedule but benefit from it mightily down the road.

Wild Card

AFC-Baltimore Ravens, Indianapolis Colts

Ravens will have enough offense and defense to propel them, their weaker division will help them too.  Flacco will once again make the playoffs and who knows once you get in, anything can happen.  The Colts will be led by their strong QB play of Andrew Luck and a manageable division schedule will benefit the Colts.  They will be improved on defense as well which will help them.

NFC-Washington Redskins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Josh Freeman will look to erase the critics and prove his worth as a franchise QB. Picture from borntocompete.com
Josh Freeman will look to erase the critics and prove his worth as a franchise QB.
Picture from borntocompete.com

RG III will not be denied a trip to the playoffs, they will fall short of the division to the Cowboys but this team will be a dangerous one.  Their strong defense led by London Fletcher will keep them in games and their explosive play from RGIII will propel their offense.  The Bucs are a sneaky, sleeper pick.  No one is giving them much respect but with their offseason additions and their nice rebound year last year, I just think they will do enough to get there.  Freeman will be much better resulting in their offense being dangerous and their defense will be better to help them edge into the playoffs.

AFC Champion-Denver Broncos

The Broncos will lock up home field advantage again this year and use that to their advantage and not let it go to waste again.  They are the most explosive AFC team and they will have one of the better defenses too.  It won’t be as good as Houston’s defense, but it will be good enough to compliment their offense.  Peyton will have record breaking numbers and look to get his second Super Bowl ring and they just might do it.

NFC Champion-San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers are no doubt the most balanced and strongest NFC team.  They can run, throw, play defense with all the same effectiveness.  They will be too much for anyone that opposes them, but it will not be an easy road.  Kaepernick will get them to the Super Bowl for the second straight season and would look like it could be their year.

Super Bowl Champion-Denver Broncos

Peyton Manning celebrating what he hopes to be another Super Bowl in his future. Picture from www.sportsmole.co.uk
Peyton Manning celebrating what he hopes to be another Super Bowl in his future.
Picture from http://www.sportsmole.co.uk

I have the Broncos beating the 49ers in the Super Bowl.  I have to go with my early, early pick of the Broncos being the best team.  Peyton and his endless list of weapons will be too much for any opponent.  Kaepernick and the 49ers fall short yet again, but they’ve got a lot of time ahead of them.  The 49ers defense is better but Peyton Manning is well Peyton Manning.  Peyton will get Super Bowl number two and not let his younger brother out do him.  Wouldn’t that be nice, to see Peyton light it up this year and get a second and much deserving Super Bowl ring this late in his career, post neck injury.  After the game John Elway will proclaim to everyone, “This one’s for Peyton.”

So there you have it, the NFL predictions in it’s entirety.  It should be another great season and I am glad it is already here.  I’m ready to kick back and take it all in.  Let us know what you think about the season right here and how you see it all playing out.  I wish your team well!

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ACC Week 2 Picks and Preview

Boyd and Watkins will again dominate this week. Picture from www.orangeandwhite.com
Boyd and Watkins will again dominate this week.
Picture from http://www.orangeandwhite.com

Hey guys! Week 2 in the ACC is about to begin and I know I’m excited about it!  After a really good showing in week 1, the ACC will be looking to continue it’s early season dominance.  Let’s take a look at all the games and I’ll let you know how each one will play out.

Wake Forest at Boston College

This is the lone ACC Conference game of the week and it features two teams that not many people know a lot about.  Wake Forest should be average this year while BC is just not going to be any good.  It is conference play so who knows what could happen but Wake should have no problems moving the ball with their offense.  Wake Forest wins 31 -17.

12 Florida at Miami

Another SEC/ACC matchup and a hated rivalry at that.  They don’t play that much anymore nor will they in the future so for bragging rights, this one means a lot.  Florida will bring their hard nosed rushing offense and challenge Miami’s defense that way and use that ground game to open up the pass.  Miami will use their stud Duke Johnson any way they can to generate offense but it won’t be enough.  Gators win 27-17.

Middle Tennessee at North Carolina

Seemingly an over-matched game to the untrained eye but to the experts such as I, you can see clearly this will be a closer one than expected.  North Carolina will ride the arm of the QB Bryn Renner to victory in this one, but a late drive by the Blue Raiders will scare the Tar Heels as they will narrowly escape with a victory by sealing it with a turnover.  Tar Heels win 28-24.

South Carolina State at 4 Clemson

I know the FCS made a good showing in week 1 but no amount of “Clemson being Clemson” will make this an upset.  Boyd will continue building on his already impressive numbers and make me look smart yet again for picking him as the ACC MVP.  Clemson wins big 55-7.

Western Carolina at Virginia Tech

The Hokies have been known to have their share of early season slip ups in the past “ahem, East Carolina and James Madison”, but not this time.  They did some things to be encouraged about against the top team in the country and will build on those things to roll over this FCS weak opponent.  Hokies win big 41-13.

2 Oregon at Virginia

The most awesome uniforms take the field against the Cavaliers and one can’t wait to see what they run out this week.  Oregon’s offense is beyond explosive and that will continue this weekend.  Virginia had a good win against a tough BYU team but no amount of confidence will trip up the Ducks.  I mean Oregon’s uniforms already gives them 2 to 3 touchdowns before they even step on the field.  Oregon and their awesome uniforms smash Virginia 56-21.

Old Dominion at Maryland

A new FBS opponent in Old Dominion will take on the mighty Terrapins.  Maryland looked really good in their first game and showed they do have some sort of offense after all.  Their QB C.J. Brown was flawless in their first game and they will ride that into this one.  Terrapins manhandle Old Dominion 38-17.

Duke QB Anthony Boone looks to lead Duke to a 2-0 start. Picture from espn.go.com
Duke QB Anthony Boone looks to lead Duke to a 2-0 start.
Picture from espn.go.com

Duke at Memphis

Ooo Duke and Memphis, this will be an interesting one no doubt.  Duke was solid in their first game and Memphis is playing their first game of the year.  I think Duke being in a groove after playing one game will be the difference in this one as Memphis is trying to shake off the first game jitters and rust.  Duke wins 27-21.

Syracuse at 19 Northwestern

The Cuse and Northwestern will clash and the Wildcats mean business this season.  Syracuse looked good in their first game against Penn State, even with being over-matched.  Northwestern though looked much better in their win over Cal.  Northwestern is a sleeper in the Big Ten and will show why again this weekend.  Wildcats win easily 34-21.

Richmond at NC State

Another FCS opponent looking to do the unthinkable.  Although Richmond is a more formidable FCS opponent, just can’t go with an FCS team winning ever in a game.  NC State will continue to play solid on both sides of the ball and win easily.  Wolfpack win 45-17.

Bye: Florida State, Georgia Tech, Pittsburgh

There’s your game picks and preview of each game getting you ready for this weekend of ACC action.  I have the ACC going 7-4 this weekend which is a nice way to follow up an impressive week one.  Again, there are some games where they are just over-matched but most games are very winnable for the teams.  The ACC will look good again and prove it’s out of conference worth more this weekend.  Let me know what you think will take place in the ACC this week and how you feel about my picks.

ACC Makes Good First Impression

Well the first weekend of college football is in the books and upon review of the ACC, it was an overall good first impression.  They weren’t undefeated by no means but the conference as a whole produced a 10-4 record for the weekend and that includes one ACC conference game.  No ACC team lost in upset fashion and the ones that did lose were just over-matched by their opponent.  All the ACC victories were ones that certainly help the strength of a conference that desperately needs it.

Clemson QB Tajh Boyd led his Tigers to an impressive win over SEC power Georgia. Picture from msn.foxsports.com
Clemson QB Tajh Boyd led his Tigers to an impressive win over SEC power Georgia.
Picture from msn.foxsports.com

In the ACC’s biggest win this weekend, 8 Clemson defeated 5 Georgia 38-35 to really put them in great position to make a run at a national title.  Clemson’s offense was clicking but what was most impressive was the defense’s ability to handle the SEC caliber offensive and defensive lines throughout the entirety of the game.  My pick as Tajh Boyd as ACC MVP certainly looking good right now after finishing 18-30 for 270 yards and 3 TDs, and running for 42 yards and 2 TDs.

11 Florida State continued ACC dominance over new ACC member Pitt in a 41-13 rout.  The star is no doubt my predicted newcomer of the year Jameis Winston who was 25-27 for 356 yards and 4 TDs, he also ran for 2 yards and a TD.  His talent is unquestioned, although a weak opponent, a great first road win for him and the Noles.

Maryland, Miami, Georgia Tech, NC State, Wake Forest, and Duke more than did enough to take care of business this past weekend.  All these teams playing inferior opponents and all looked very good getting the job done, most so was Georgia Tech, my ACC Coastal sleeper pick, who won convincingly 70-0 over FCS opponent Elon.  Even though an FCS opponent, they dominated them with their triple-option attack and did not let up all game.  Not giving up any TDs looks good too.

Close wins over opponents were Boston College and Virginia squeaking out their opponents.  BC was against Villanova so there’s concern there but better than 7 teams this past weekend who lost to FCS opponents.  Virginia was over BYU which was a nice win for the Cavaliers and gets their season off on the right foot which is what they desperately need.

The losses included Pitt, Syracuse, North Carolina and Virgina Tech.  In fairness to these schools, all of them were over-matched in their games.  All teams showed as much as they could and had some bright spots but not enough to put them over the top.  The Cuse lost to Penn State 23-17, VT lost to 1 Bama 35-10, NC lost to 6 South Carolina 27-10 and Pitt lost to 11 FSU 41-13.

So in the end, I would say the ACC was very impressive in their opening weekend of college football.  The Clemson win highlighting the weekend of course and other top power FSU showing that they may have enough to challenge the Tigers in the Atlantic Division.  This past weekend showed the strength of the ACC from top to bottom.  It looks like it could be a good year in the ACC, but we’ll wait and see how it plays out because it is only one week.  Week 2 is ahead and we’ll see how it goes.  ACC Week 2 preview and picks coming soon and I’ll let you know how each team stacks up this weekend.  Let us know how you feel about the ACC in their first weekend of football.