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Week 2

Week 1
Sunday - 1:00 PM EST Sunday, 4:00 PM EST
BAL at TEN - CB CLE at GB - AD
BUF at TB - CB MIA at NYJ - AD
DET at CHI - CB SD at DEN - AD
NE at CAR - AD  
PIT at HOU - AD Sunday - 8:30 PM EST
SF at PHI - AD KC at OAK - CB
  NYG at NO - CB
  WAS at DAL- AD

Last Week's Projections
(8-8) Straight Up - 50.0%
(6-10) Against The Spread - 37.5%

Baltimore (-4) at Tennessee 1:00 p.m
A strange thing happened to Baltimore on Monday night. They lost the one thing they needed to... their QB. Wright is a much better option considering Baltimore's O-line made Dwight Freeney look like Lawrence Taylor. This line is just not built for run blocking. So, Wright’s escape skills will be welcome. Lewis needs to get his stuff in order with only having 48 yards rushing. But that was because they were so far behind. The welcome site was Mason who came close to the 100-yard mark.

Was this team pitiful or what? I really thought they would have a better showing but uh-uh. McNair looked horrible against the great Steeler D. They have to find a way to move the ball and stop somebody. I doubt this is the week. The Ravens D will eat them alive and they will lucky to escape with their lives.

Final Score: Ravens 24, Titans 13

Buffalo at Tampa Bay (-2.5) 1:00 p.m.
Man this is tough one. Tampa Bay looked great against a supposedly great Vikings defense. Understand that this was not expected. The Bucs D was not supposed to be the same as in prior years. But you have to hand it to Gruden they came ready to play. Cadillac looks like the real deal and Griese was efficient. I think they will win simply because they can stop the Bills D and they are more efficient.

The Bills looked good in their opening game. However the Texans will never by confused with the Colts. Losman made no mistakes and McGahee was the central point. That is their formula all year. This defense is special. I would put them against anyone right now. However I think they will have trouble scoring in this one.

Final Score: Bucs 21, Bills 17

Detroit (-1.5) at Chicago 1:00 p.m
Well this is a strange line. The Lions looked very good in their opening game against the Packers. Strangely enough the Lions are usually ran over by Farve and crew. This time they showed this is a different Lions club. A club with some defense. They made Favre look horrible and the Packers had no running game. At the end of the day they are balanced and that should be enough

You know the Bears were going to have some trouble. Again the defense is as good as advertised but the offense was just as bad. They mustered about 170 yards worth of offense and Orton looked like he was a little out of his comfort zone. He will get better though so don’t worry. It just won’t be this week. I think they just can’t put up enough points to make it work.

Final Score: Lions 20, Bears 14

Jacksonville at Indianapolis (-9) 1:00 p.m
Whew boy. Did the Colts put on a show or what??? They played the best defense a Colts team has played since Unitas was there. They had pressure and they didn’t allow the big play that has plagued them for so long. They should easily dispense of the Jags. Don’t be scared of the line. This one is a no-brainer in Indy. Play all the Colts players that you have. They will score some points.

The Jags looked dominant against the Seahawks. Leftwich has a good game with 252 yards and a couple of big time TDs. Taylor looked like the old Taylor . The thing that impressed me the most was J Smith who was burning up the field. He had 130 yards and a couple of scores but he will be not much more than a spectator this week. If the Colts D keeps this up then they will be very scary.

Final Score: Colts 28, Jags 13

Minnesota (+3) at Cincinnati 1:00 p.m
Beginning the season 3-5 against the spread is not exactly what I had planned, but I guess it’s a fitting start, considering some of the big upsets in Week 1. The Vikings, who were on the unfortunate end of one of my losing picks last week, looks to rebound against the Bengals, a team on the rise. I guess my saving grace last week was discouraging readers from putting any Vikings running back in their lineup, advice that turned out to be pretty decent. If only Daunte Culpepper hadn’t turned the ball over several times, it might have been a halfway decent preview. While I don’t think you can abandon Culpepper this early, it looks like he might be a different QB without Moss, so keep your options open if you drafted him early. Burleson’s probably still the best option at WR for these guys, so look for him to catch 5-7 balls and grab a score.

The Bengals were sharp against their Ohio rivals, the much-beleagured Cleveland Browns, in the opener, and it seems Carson Palmer is starting to turn into the quarterback I never thought he would become. With some solid offensive weapons and a formidable defense, this team just keeps getting better. With confidence, start Rudi Johnson, Chad Johnson and Palmer, and stop calling them the Bungles.

Final Score: Bengals 27, Vikings 20

New England (-3) at Carolina 1:00 p.m
The Patriots have won 3 million in a row and will keep on winning them until they run into someone who can stop Tom Brady, or at least pressure him into throwing multiple interceptions deep inside their own territory. While the Panthers and their solid front four can apply some pressure, I don’t think the Panthers offense is quite up to task yet in converting turnovers into scores. The Saints played with lots of emotion, and squeaked one out, but the Patriots will be using talent and experience, with a lot of mojo mixed in, to topple the Cats. For the Pats, go with Brady, Dillon and Branch, and start Jake Delhomme and Steve Smith for the Panthers. Going with anybody else is a major risk, considering the state of the Panthers running game.

Final Score: Patriots 30, Panthers 17

Pittsburgh (-6) at Houston 1:00 p.m
I got a little bit scared when I saw the Steelers fell behind 7-0 to Tennessee for a second on Sunday, but the planets realigned themselves and normalcy resumed shortly afterward. It’s nice to see Willie Parker running well in Jerome Bettis’ stead — it certainly bodes well for the future of that organization. And I guess with Hines Ward missing so much of training camp and the preseason with his holdout, it makes sense that they didn’t go to him too much in the opener. But figure Ward to rebound with more of his usual possession-receiver self against Houston, whose defense was almost as useless as nipples on a French fry last week against Buffalo. Also, go with Parker and Roethlisberger, who is due for a decent game. The Texans head into Week Two facing a defense just as tough as the stalwart crew they dealt with in Buffalo, so don’t expect big things from Domanick Davis, David Carr, or Andre Johnson this week.

Final Score: Steelers 27, Texans 13

San Francisco (+14) at Philadelphia 1:00 p.m
After Philly’s performance on Monday night, I feel slightly vindicated about some of my views regarding the Eagles, Owens and McNabb. Nevertheless, the 49ers still aren’t capable of beating the Eagles in the City of Brotherly Love. The 49ers have some possibilities with Barlow and Brandon Lloyd, but it would be unwise to start any Niner given the Philly defense. The Eagles should get decent games from McNabb, Owens, Westbrook and L.J. Smith, but don’t be surprised if the Niners cover the 14-point spread.

Final Score: Eagles 27, Niners 17

Cleveland (+6) at Green Bay 4:05 p.m.
The Browns have resurrected, once again, the living dead in Trent Dilfer, who might still have a few serviceable fantasy games left in his old bones. Dilfer might be an OK spot play at QB if you’ve got nothing else this week, and RB Reuben Droughns seems to be the best option at RB with the injury to Suggs. Veteran WR Antonio Bryant (a title you get after three years in the NFL) emerged as Dilfer’s go-to guy against Cincinnati, and with rookie Braylon Edwards and new name Frisman Jackson, might get some catches and yardage against the Pack.

With Green Bay reeling from the loss of Javon Walker, Favre will look to establish the ground game early with heavy doses of Ahman Green and lots of dumps to Driver, Ferguson and Franks. Be wary of Ferguson, most of all, who has yet to return to his previous form as a strong WR option. Actually, kicker Ryan Longwell may be the Packers high scoring fantasy player this week.

Final Score: Packers 20, Browns 17

Miami (+6) at N.Y. Jets 4:05 p.m.
These teams couldn’t have gotten off to more different starts last week, and it just goes to show you how parity is still the NFL’s word of the day. The Dolphins put up a staggering 34 points on Denver last week in an apparent tribute to Ricky Williams, who is still sitting it out for three more weeks due to his suspension. While the Chiefs ran all over the Jets, I think Herm Edwards should have his boys whipped into shape following the KC debacle, so don’t look for anything magnificent from the Dolphins this week. Start Chris Chambers, Marty Booker and Randy McMichael, but don’t look for another 275 and 2TD from Gus Frerotte. The Jets should get big games from Curtis Martin, Pennington and Laveranues Coles, who returns to the Garden State following a stint in Washington that made him actually get nostalgic about New Jersey.

Final Score: Jets 24, Dolphins 14

San Diego (+2.5) at Denver 4:05 p.m.
Week one losses for both teams should put the emphasis on smash-mouth football in this one. I wouldn’t be surprised if both Tomlinson and recently anointed Denver back Tatum Bell (you knew he would be the guy) reached 100 with a score. This one will have some scoring, but not as much as you would expect. The Chargers have the offensive advantage with Brees, LT and TE Antonio Gates, who is anxious to get his season off on the right foot. Brees is the most questionable start, as he hasn’t had any great games against Denver, but LT and Gates are must-plays. Keenan McCardell is another solid possibility, even though he’s an antique. The Broncos have four or five good fantasy options in Plummer, Bell or Anderson, Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie and Jeb Putzier. Bell might not get the start, because it looks like Anderson will be back, but don’t believe anything coming out of the Broncos injury report. Shanahan is a master of deception when it comes to injuries and depth charts.

Final Score: Chargers 27, Broncos 20

Atlanta (+1) at Seattle 4:05 p.m.
Atlanta looked great against the Eagles which is why I am shocked to see this line. If you don’t jump on this you are not a true fan. I had to look to see if someone was hurt. They are not, which makes this even more ridiculous. Vick was running around and that defense-looked crazy putting pressure on McNabb. Look for them to move the ball and win this one.

The Seahawks started out good but ended up in a bad way. As we mentioned above the Jags finally started to dominate them late and really made Hasselbeck struggle. Some folks may be looking to shop Alexander around in FF this week. I think at the end of the day he will have a tough time putting things together this season. They just don’t have the tools around him to help ease the pressure. They will have trouble against this pass rush

Final Score: Falcons 23, Seahawks 14

St. Louis at Arizona (-1) 4:05 p.m
Can you believe the Rams got the worse end of the stick on the 49ers? That was a rare situation. It just doesn’t happen and you normally see the 49ers walking off the field dejected. But the Rams look like they had a very leaky line and I think that Martz will need to make some changes to protection or Bulger will not last the year. When you give up 7 sacks to a 49ers team that is not known for pressure you need to revaluate.

The Cardinals looked good in the beginning but fizzled at the end against the Giants. They looked pretty good on offense but understand that this is a work in progress. The Rams D is nowhere near the caliber of the Giants D so they should be able to maneuver better. Fitzgerald is an animal and will continue his hot streak this week. Watch Warner be pumped for this one.

Final Score: Cardinals 30, Rams 21

Kansas City at Oakland (+1) 8:30 p.m.
The Chiefs look to run the ball pretty much the entire game but folks that took Holmes have to be disappointed in what has transpired. They will now pretty much split carries with Holmes and Johnson 50-50. That is not good for anyone. But as far as this game I think that the Raiders will be better than what people think and will show it on prime time. Katy bar the door on this one. This will be scoring from beginning to ending.

The Raiders looked great for the first half and then succumbed to a Super Bowl defense in the Pats. You can mark up Collins, Jordan, and Moss for big time scores. I told you about Alexander last week. He will get a couple of looks around the goal line again. The defense is a little better than what I expected but understand that they will always have trouble against the pass all year. But they will win this track meet.

Final Score: Raiders 35, Chiefs 32

Giants at New Orleans (+3) 7:30 p.m.
The Saints played inspired football against the Panthers and won a game that nobody thought they would. Give them some credit they put it all together and made no mistakes. That is what it takes to be a good football team. Brooks was efficient but he didn’t have to do it all. McAlister was the focus and that is what will lead them to better things. He had 2 TDs and didn’t cough up the football. The defense was in command and forced 4 turnovers. They will need some more of that this week.

Gaints were in prime form as they started their year off with a big win against a Cardinal team that was a big chic pick at the first of the year. Early results are showing that Eli may be learning the pro game. His passes look much better but he needs to cut out the turnovers. That will not get it done in this league. He needs to find another way to win because the Saints defense will put some heavy pressure on him and I think he will cough it up a few times. Looks for them to have some problems.

Final Score: Saints 24, Giants 20

Washington (+6) at Dallas
How ‘bout them Cowboys? It looks like Bill Parcells has finally got the quarterback he wants, the defensive line he desires, and the talent to make it all happen. The Cowboys should see more big games from Bledsoe, Keyshawn, Julius Jones and Jason Witten, although the big young tight end was a no show last week against San Diego. Patrick Crayton and Terry “Don’t call me Teresa” Glenn are also options, but I think MeShawn will gather up the yardage and catches versus the Skins. The Redskins have two solid fantasy starters in Clinton Portis and Santana Moss, but their quarterback issues will mean inconsistency from that position and most of the surrounding offensive stars. WR David Patten was much better off as a #3 or #4 receiver in New England than he is as a #2 guy in Washington.

Final Score: Cowboys 31, Redskins 20