What will get a team a win on Sunday? The answer that most coaches will give you is practice. Arguably the most important intangible for a team is how well it practices together. That is what separates teams like the Green Bay Packers from teams like the Houston Texans. Both had viable shots at the title last year. The team that walked away with the Lombardi Trophy was the cheese heads. So, it comes as no surprise that the Pack had the best practice routine in the NFC. The New York Jets are another team that practices like their coach was a tiger mom. By now most NFL fans know of Jets West, the annual summer practice held by Mark Sanchez in California. Last season was the inaugural year of this new session, which was continued during the 2011 Lockout. Obviously the Jets went to the AFC Championship that year, the second in a row. But these wins also happen because of preparation at Florham Park, NJ. The town that grew famous as the workplace of Thomas Edison also serves as the Jets practice facility throughout the year. That old saying still holds true in the new NFL of concussion helmets, DirecTV and first down lines. Practice makes perfect!
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1. I am going to watch Buffalo vs. Oakland. Call me crazy but I think a storm is brewing with the Bills. Sure there 41-7 win against the Chiefs may be a fluke. But then again it’s most likely not. The Chiefs were a playoff team last year and were expected to blow out the lowly Bills. Instead the tables turned and the Bills were the ones doing the blowing out. A 41-7 win is no fluke. Of course it is very early but as the weeks go on I think the world will get a taste of what it is happening in Buffalo. This will make one of my friend’s, who is a huge Bills fan, really happy but that taste will be very good. Kind of like when there is a soda fountain at a store and you get a little bit of each!
2. Speaking of upsets I think that Detroit will be able to beat Kansas City. Yup, things are not going to get better for the Chiefs. The started their season on a sour note and if they don’t think they can beat Detroit then they won’t be able to. 50% of the game is mental and KC has to think they can win. Sadly, they don’t think they can win and they won’t win. Meanwhile for the Lions they think they will beat up the Chiefs like they are Snooki. The Lions are 1-0 and their first win came against the Buccaneers, a team poised to make a surprise run to Indy. The Bucs have a great offense but the young Lions defense was all over that, making Josh Freeman throw a pick as well as picking up a fumble. I don’t want to jump on Detroit’s bandwagon yet but a convincing win against the angry Chief’s might be enough to sway me.
3. Is Cam Newton a stable NFL quarterback? Many fans would be happy with the 442 yards, 2 touchdowns performance he gave last week against the Cardinals. Not me. I’m not doubting that his performance was spectacular, which it was. But it could just be a one-week fling against a lowly defense. I need more to be convinced of Newton’s future. His biggest and first real test comes this week against the defending champs of Green Bay. If Cam can pull out a win against the Packers or even emulate his Week One performance then I’ll be making a Cam Newton shrine in my room.
4. This game interests me. Two overlooked Super Bowl contenders are going at in the Superdome. The Saints started their season by losing to the Pack after failing to score from the three-yard line. The Bears beat the Falcons but for some reason they are not favorites for Indy. Um, maybe because of Jay Cutler. But seriously, I don’t hate Cutler and he went 22-32 with 312 yards and two touchdowns against the stingy Atlanta defense. But the reason I will pick the Saints to win this one is because of one player-Brian Urlacher. After receiving the news of the passing of his mother earlier this week the defensive leader missed Wednesday practice but came back Thursday. Urlacher was expected to miss this week’s game. He won’t but he definitely will play with the aggression of a limping zebra. I can’t believe after missing a crucial day of practice and hearing about the death of your mother, one can play a stellar game. Who knows though, he may pull the Brett Farve card and shock the world while leading the Bears to victory.
5. The Bronco’s aren’t looking too good. They are coming off a loss and in the midst of a quarterback controversy that is doomed to failure on both ends. But the Cincinnati Bengals are coming off a convincing win versus division rival the Cleveland Browns in which rookie quarterback Andy Dalton threw for 81 yards and a touchdown and veteran quarterback Brad Gradkowski threw for 92 yards and another touchdown. I am confident that one of these men will lead the Bengals to victory.
Another factor that will contribute into the demise of the Bronco’s is that they play at home. While this would be considered an advantage anywhere else right now the crowd at Sports Authority Field is hostile and if Kyle Orton does not play like a first-ballot Hall of Famer this crowd will be more angry then the fat kid whose Big Mac fell on the ground. This hostile nature will lead to Orton making rushed and bad throws as well as terrible decisions that will set up a loss for Denver. Also coach John Fox will be pressured into putting in an inexperienced quarterback. Either way the Bronco’s won’t be able to muster out a win.
6. Well, this will be interesting. The Eagles, the Dream Team, visit the Atlanta Falcons on a heavily hyped matchup Sunday night. While the biggest story is by far Michael Vick returning to the place where he started his career do you really think that fans will cheer for him? The question then begins, would I? Now that I think about it-yes. I would. I was going to bag on Vick for not giving a title to the people of Atlanta but that makes no sense. Vick will get the win and get out of there. This is the first time that most people will get a look at the new-look Eagles. You know that Andy Reid has devised a game plan that will send man of the hour Matt Ryan packing. Reid understands the importance of this game and if he doesn’t win that cue the hurtful words Monday morning.
7. Monday Night Football is back to one game this week and it’s a good one. While many people would say why would I want to watch two 0-1 teams battle it out? To which I would respond, it’s Monday Night Football they can lure you into watching two cats just sit there. But in all seriousness the biggest storyline from this game comes from Steve Spagnuolo. The former head coach of the Rams is now the defensive coach for the Giants. TRAITOR. But ultimately this game is a tale of two quarterbacks. If Eli Manning plays well the G-Men get a win at home. But if Bradford plays well then the Rams go home felling good about themselves. To call this game it comes down to which quarterback you like. Personally while I don’t think he is better then Tom Brady, Eli Manning is a better quarterback then Bradford and while either could win I like Manning and the Giants in a hard fought battle.
8. A heavy hitter matchup looks to be one of the best of the week. Yes, two very good teams and Super Bowl contenders will go head to head at Foxboro. The Patriots of New England will take on the Chargers of San Diego. While it will be close the Patriots will survive Phillip Rivers and company. The Chargers allowed the fewest yards in the NFL last weekend and will give quarterback Tom Brady a real challenge. But the Patriots had a team-record 622 total yards last weekend against the Dolphins. But the Chargers defense will be relentless forcing Tom Brady into pressure situations and making a strong receiving corps actually work to get open. Brady is 5-2 against San Diego and if his defense doesn’t fail him expect the Patriots to improve to 2-0.
9. Expect the Buccaneers to get the ball to LeGarrette Blount more this week in a win against the Vikings. Last week he only had five carries for 15 yards. That is completely unacceptable for a running back to get that little weight in an offense. OK, maybe I’m a little mad because he was on my fantasy team but still Raheem Morris needs to find a way to get his feature back more carries. I feel that experiment will come this week against an experiment of a team-the Minnesota Vikings. A team without a quarterback is no team at all. And Donovan McNabb is no Brett Farve. The Buccaneers will get the win in a blowout form. They need it more then anyone.
10. DAMN. That’s all I can say. Watch the video and you will know what I am talking about.
Thanks friends for reading this article and enjoy the great selection of games this weekend. I know I will. Any questions or comments will be greatly appreciated below or at email@example.com. Thanks guys. Until next week FIRST DOWN!