LAST week didn’t exactly go according to plan with the Rangers saving me from a goose egg. Thank god the NFL is back as my safety blanket to save my reputation and hopefully begin the climb back to mediocrity.
Last Sunday Picks: 1 – 5
Overall: 263 – 208
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Milwaukee Brewers @ Chicago Cubs
THE Cubs seemed poised to run away with the ML Central a few weeks ago, but some indifferent form mixed in with the Brewers and Cardinals chalking up wins have them perilously close to missing the postseason. With Chicago’s bats stepping up to the occasion and Kyle Hendricks (6-4, 3.29 ERA) putting in a quality start, I think they can avoid being swept by their division rivals.
Verdict: Cubs W
New York Yankees @ Texas Rangers
A.J. Griffin (6-5, 5.09 ERA) has had his way with the Yankees in his career to date with a 3-0 record and 2.37 ERA. As Texas looks to keep in touch with a wildcard berth and their conference foes, Rangers fans will be hoping that Griffin continues to dominate New York. He won’t.
Verdict: Yankees W
Image from kwese.espn.com
Colorado Rockies @ Los Angeles Dodgers
JUST over two weeks ago the Dodgers recorded their 91st win of the season giving them an imposing 91-36 record. Fast forward to the present and they find themselves losers of nine straight matches and have only one win from their last 14 appearances. With the series already lost and LA clamouring to try and find some form they desperately need this one. Too bad Colorado has their own playoff thoughts in mind.
Verdict: Rockies W
Los Angeles Angels @ Seattle Mariners
THE in form Parker Bridwell (7-2, 4.00 ERA) should help to avoid a series sweep for the Angels. It won’t be an easy feat though with the Mariners hungry for the postseason and are knocking on the door of the second AL wild card berth. Strap yourselves in this is going to be a good one.
Verdict: Angels W
New York Jets @ Buffalo Bills
NFL Sunday begins with one of the matches of the year…OK I tried to get that line out with a straight face. Both the Bills and Jets are destined to feature at the bottom of the league in 2017. With New York sweeping the Bills last season they will look to kick off their campaign with a road win. I have faith that Tyrod Taylor and LeSean McCoy can get Buffalo on the board.
Verdict: Bills W
Atlanta Falcons @ Chicago Bears
ATLANTA begins their season with a visit to Soldier Field as they prepare to avenge their SuperBowl loss from a season ago. After losing in dramatic fashion the Falcons are tabbed by many to take a step backwards this year and they can’t afford to slip up against the lowly Bears if that want to avoid that label. I have faith that they won’t.
Verdict: Falcons W
Image from bostonglobe.com
Baltimore Ravens @ Cincinnati Bengals
QUESTIONS remain over how ready the Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco will be for the season opener in Cincinnati. Flacco has had to cram a preseason’s body of work into one week of practice thanks to a back complaint. While Baltimore is definitely the better team and I believe they are playoff bound, the Bengals will pull off the upset here.
Verdict: Bengals W
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cleveland Browns
THIS one is going to go Pittsburgh’s way, there’s no debating that. But for the first time in years, the Browns are capable of putting up a fight and who knows, even claiming their first win of the year. DeShoen Kizer is scheduled to make his debut and while he will give Cleveland a glimpse into the future the Steelers front line. will make his first NFL game a living nightmare
Verdict: Steelers W
Arizona Cardinals @ Detroit Lions
INTERESTINGLY enough the Lions haven’t beaten Arizona since 2006. Both teams are likely to float around .500 while potentially challenging for a playoff spot. I’m giving the Cardinals the edge in this one thanks to their studded defensive unit that should make life miserable for the NFL’s new highest paid man.
Verdict: Cardinals W
Image from revengeofthebirds.com
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans
THE past week has been a tough one for not only the Texans but for Houston as a whole. After the devastation from Hurricane Harvey begins to become clear the city of Houston really need the Texans to deliver for them this weekend to give them something to cheer about. As emotionally charged as this game may be, I expect them to deliver for their city.
Verdict: Texans W
Oakland Raiders @ Tennessee Titans
MY favourite matchup of the weekend (sorry Packers/Seahawks fans) pits two of the teams poised to take over the AFC in the coming years against one other. Ironically both will also be playing with their quarterbacks for the first time since Derek Carr and Marcus Mariota sustained season ending broken leg’s last Christmas Eve. With a few players on the Raiders injury list and the Titans owning home field advantage, Tennessee get’s the nod.
Verdict: Titans W
Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins
DIVISION rivals, Philadelphia and Washington will go to war at FedEx Field, with both eager to establish themselves as contenders for the NFC East crown. Even though Kirk Cousins offensive talents are clear I think the Eagles are the better team and as a result will get the victory on the road.
Verdict: Eagles W
Indianapolis Colts @ Los Angeles Rams
ANOTHER ‘can’t miss’ game between two squads who I don’t think will trouble the win column too much this year. Without Andrew Luck in uniform, the Colts will turn to back up QB Scott Tolzien who, making just his fourth start, will be chasing his first win. His opposing number Jared Goff will also be after win No. 1 in his career and my pick is that the Rams will kick off their season in style.
Verdict: Rams W
Image from fanragsports.com
Seattle Seahawks @ Green Bay Packers
MOST, if not all of the NFL fans/experts/personalities are predicting the Seahawks, Packers or both to feature in the NFC championship game this year. It’s rare that we are treated to a ‘clash of the titans’ in the early parts of the season and if there is one game you watch this weekend, be sure this is it.
Verdict: Packers W
Carolina Panthers @ San Fransisco 49ers
A downward spiral last season saw the Panthers lose nine more games than the season before and miss the playoffs entirely. The 2015 MVP Cam Newton dropped off as he battled injuries and form, but after slimming down in the offseason and with new weapons surrounding him, the Panthers should start 2017 with a bang.
Verdict: Panthers W
New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys
THE final game of the Sunday fixtures will feature the two NFC East playoff teams from last year. The Giants defense and the Cowboys offense are going to dictate who will be the winner in this one and with Zeke back in uniform for potentially the entire season, the Cowboys are going to grind out a close victory.
Verdict: Cowboys W