Week One Preview and Predictions

Week One
By Zack Cimini

It?s finally time to play meaningful NFL football games. The season even starts on a Thursday, for football fans that can?t wait until Sunday. Week one in the NFL is often one of the craziest weeks. NFL teams don?t play at a high level, and that leads to a lot of upsets. That?s what is so great about the NFL. A team will look solid in the first couple of weeks, and then they go on a six game losing streak. The reason why is because the talented NFL teams finally start playing to their abilities.

The matchups for this week are some of the best I?ve ever seen on week one. It?s going to be a tough week for people that do weekly picks. The only two games that look like sure wins are Denver over Cincinnati, and Miami over the Texans. All the rest are very tough matchups. Here will break down each matchup for week one of the NFL season.

NY Jets vs. Washington

This is going to be a great game. For one thing it is the first game of the NFL season. Another is that it is just a great matchup. Vinny Testaverde is back in the spotlight, and will have a lot of pressure on him. The Jets are expected to compete for the tough AFC East division title, and have plenty of talent to do it. Washington just has a lot of question marks right now. Patrick Ramsey is a young quarterback, and will go through plenty of struggles. Not to mention that their running back situation is very foggy. Lavernues Coles and Rod Gardner are great young receivers. If it turns into a shootout, the Jets don?t stand a chance.

Winner: Jets

New England vs. Buffalo

You know that the NFL schedule makers did this game on purpose. Drew Bledsoe gets to face his former teammates once again, and that should be a great challenge. Buffalo made some noise last year, and have upgraded tremendously on defense. The Bills arguably have the best overall players at each position on offense. Bledsoe is a poised solid veteran, Travis Henry is a very explosive running back, and Eric Moulds is Mr. Consistent. The only question with their offense is if Josh Reed can fill the void Peerless Price left.

Winner: Bills

Denver vs. Cincinnati

Jake Plummer will have all the opportunities to prove himself week one. For once Cincinnati enters the season with a chance to win five to six games. They have talent, but not enough, and will struggle against all of Denver?s options. How many weeks do you think it?ll take for Carson Palmer to throw his first four-interception game? I give him less than four weeks.

Winner: Broncos

Indianapolis vs. Cleveland

Who can forget how crazy this game was last season. Both of these teams resemble each other so well, that it is unbelievable. Peyton Manning is coming out to prove that the Colts are for real this season, and Kelly Holcomb is trying to show that he deserved to win the job. Manning has one thing that Holcomb doesn?t have though, and that?s Marvin Harrison. Look for the Colts to find a way to win this game.

Winner: Colts

San Diego vs. Kansas City

We?ll finally be able to see Priest Holmes play in a complete game. The Chargers were one of the best teams in football, until they collapsed down the stretch. One of the main reasons was that Ladainian Tomlinson was being used too much. That?s why the Chargers brought in David Boston. At 260 pounds, who knows how many games Boston will be able to play this season. If he can play a whole season, this team has a serious chance to get into the playoffs. Unless LT runs crazy week one, the Chargers won?t be able to win at Arrowhead stadium.

Winner: Chiefs

Houston vs. Miami

How many week one?s has Miami won straight? It?s been awhile since Miami has lost on week one, and that shouldn?t change this year. Ricky Williams will have a lot to prove, after struggling throughout most of the preseason. Miami?s offense doesn?t jump out at you, but for some reason it always looks good in the first month of a season.

Winner: Dolphins

St. Louis vs. New York Giants

It always seems that both of these teams are playing each other. The Giants are one of those teams that struggled through preseason, and that could end up carrying over to week one. St. Louis is ready to go and will show that they are still a very capable team.

Winner: Rams

Baltimore vs. Pittsburgh

The Ravens have a great defense, but Pittsburgh usually finds a way to tear it up. Plaxico Burress and Hines Ward just know how to get open against the Ravens. It?ll be up to them to have great days, because Baltimore?s run defense will shut down Zereoue and the Bus.

Winner: Steelers

Arizona vs. Detroit

Jeff Blake and Emmitt Smith will make their opening debut against the Lions. Both of these teams have already been hit hard with preseason injuries. The Cardinals lost Duane Starks for the season, and the Lions lost James Stewart. Arizona went 4-0 in the preseason, and have enough talent to win this game in Detroit.

Winner: Cardinals

Minnesota vs. Green Bay

Brett Favre and the Packers went on a complete down slide towards the end of last season. The nucleus of the team is still there, and it?s opening day at Lambeau field. The Vikings finished off the season strong, and their season will ride on Daunte Culpepper once again. If he can play to his ability this team can be one of the best in the NFC. This is a tough game, but you have to go with Green Bay at home.

Winner: Packers

Jacksonville vs. Carolina

With Jimmy Smith out for four weeks, the Jaguars are going to be in serious trouble. Mark Brunell has struggled to find any other target besides Smith his entire career. Keenan McCardell use to put up decent numbers, but Jimmy Smith has been the main guy. The Panthers defense is very tough, and so is Jacksonville?s. This game will be up to both of the stud running backs. Fred Taylor vs. Stephen Davis, whoever does the best will win this game.

Winner: Jaguars

Chicago vs. San Francisco

Chicago has absolutely no running game, and Kordell Stewart for their quarterback. Stewart is out to prove that he still has it, and this will be his last season to prove it. San Francisco should run away with this game, and we should see Terrell Owens first celebration of the year.

Winner: 49ers

New Orleans vs. Seattle

This is one of the toughest matchups of the week. Seattle is a rising team in the NFL, and the Saints have always had the talent. Seattle?s offense is probably the best in the league, and the Saints offense isn?t far behind. This game will be a shootout, and will come down to which defense can make the big play. I?d expect the Saints to find away to pull this one out.

Winner: Seahawks

Atlanta vs. Dallas

All the sudden Dallas?s Quincy Carter has been playing amazing. If he can keep playing up to that ability, Dallas will be a team to be reckoned with. Their defense kept them in plenty of games last year, and they?ve upgraded in that area. Doug Johnson will have a very tough time against the Cowboys defense, and that will result in a Dallas win.

Winner: Cowboys

Oakland vs. Tennessee

Steve McNair looks like a man on a mission this season. Through all the injuries he went through last year, he still carried the Titans to the AFC championship. The Raiders still have tons of options all over the field, but the Titans are going to carry over last season?s anger.

Winner: Titans

Tampa Bay vs. Philadelphia

Last season the Buccaneers ended the talk that they can?t win in cold weather. They won?t have to worry about that on Monday, but they?ll have to worry about a very tough Eagles team. The Eagles looked the best in the preseason, and will have extra motivation just like Tennessee.

Winner: Eagles


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