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Welcome to the blog of The Killer Nacho, known to most mortals as Timothy J. Sharpe, a Computer Science graduate of Messiah College and currently a Systems Analyst for Sunoco Logistics. Within this tome of pages, one will find my innermost thoughts about various things concerning things that I enjoy. These subjects include, but are not limited to, roleplaying, gaming, American Football (the NFL), things to do with computers, philosophy, movies that are awesome, TV shows that are awesome, my own writings and creative works, and dangerous Mexican snacks.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Week 2 NFL 2011 Power Rankings and Predictions: Wild Opening Week!

Week 1 of the NFL is great. It proves how all the hype and predictions in the off-season are pointless, and that every team has a shot. There were some serious shockers in Week 1, but I'm here as always to give you the scoop.

Also, I am joined in these articles from my friend who will be called "Billy". Billy will also be giving us his weekly Power Rankings and predictions, so it should be interesting to see two different perspectives. I think many of you will enjoy Billy's personality... and we'll be competing the whole season on who can predict NFL games better! Who will win ... Billy, myself, or the Simulator? Anyway, here are my Power Rankings after the first week:

Biggest Winner: Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins (+8)
Biggest Loser: Cleveland Browns (-7)

1. New England Patriots (1-0, +0): Tom Brady is the best quarterback of all time. This game sticks a fork in it. Going against a supposedly good Dolphins defense, he was able to throw for career-high 517 yards in a single game, with four touchdowns. He did throw an interception to Jared Odrick, but that wasn't really his fault, it was off a deflection. Granted, a lot of the yardage came from a 99-yard touchdown to Welker in garbage time, but its hard to not be high on New England right now. The one thing that concerns me is them letting Chad Henne throw for 416 yards himself on the other side of the ball... then again, with offensive play like that, who needs defense?

2. Baltimore Ravens (1-0, +5): Joe Flacco has never beaten Ben Roethlisberger. The Steelers have dominated the Ravens in recent matchups. Steelers-Ravens games are always close. That was a game proving that history is meaningless. The Ravens dominated that game, offense and defense. Offensively, Joe Flacco and Ray Rice looked like superstars. Defensively, they were able to force several turnovers as well as limit the Steelers to 7 points. On both sides of the ball, they dominated the line of scrimmage. If they keep playing like this, Baltimore is going to be special this season.

3. Green Bay Packers (1-0, -1): As I predicted, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers offense came out strong. Rodgers threw three touchdown passes in the 1st quarter. However, Game 1 wasn't all peaches and roses for the defending champs. Their defense and special teams looked suspect at times, giving up 34 points to the visiting Saints. They will have to play a lot better as the season progresses.

4. Chicago Bears (1-0, +4): As I predicted in my Week 1 rankings, Chicago was not a fluke last season. I didn't quite predict how right I actually was, however. They played an Atlanta team very good a year ago and made them look like a high school squad. Their defense made Atlanta's offense look like an absolute joke. Offensively, Matt Forte looked like a premiere back and while Jay Cutler had some issues, he ultimately got the job done. Chicago should remain one of the league's best teams.

5. Pittsburgh Steelers (0-1, -2): One game isn't going to push me from the Steelers bandwagon (although the Super Bowl losers curse is screaming at me to jump off). Fact of the matter is, the Steelers looked awful in every facet of the game in Week 1. I'm going to wait and see adjustments they make to some of their key weaknesses (like the offensive line) before passing judgment. The Steelers still have everything you would need for an elite team. They just ened to put it all together on the football field.

6. Philadelphia Eagles (1-0, -2): The Eagles won in Week 1 as many expected (when was the last time Andy Reid lost the season opener, anyway?), but there were some things that concerned me. First of all, the Rams scored very easily on their first offensive drive with Steven Jackson burning the Eagles linebacker corps for an easy touchdown. Offensively, the Eagles makeshift offensive line looked suspect as the Rams put good pressure on Michael Vick all game, getting some sacks and forcing him to scramble out of the pocket. Both the linebacker corps and offensive line will need to be addressed before the Eagles are considered an elite team. I'm not 100% sold on the 'Dream Team' yet.

7. New Orleans Saints (0-1, -1): The Saints lost Week 1, but really, the cards were stacked against them. Never in the history of the Thursday night opener has the away team beaten the defending champs. Still, the Saints offense looked sharp against the Pack's dominating defense. Drew Brees looked like an improved Quarterback from a season ago. Their defense left a bit to be desired (as well as their special teams coverage), but the defense played better as the game progressed. Darren Sproles was a surprise, as he appears to be the team's replacement for Reggie Bush. This offense will allow the Saints to win ball games this season, no doubt.

8. Houston Texans (1-0, +5): Houston has only defeated the Colts twice in their history, but they can peg win #3 on their board after their dominating victory. Granted, the Texans always seem to look good early in the season. Granted, the Colts are obviously not the same team without Peyton Manning under center. Still, the Texans did not have Pro Bowl running back Arian Foster and managed to blow them out regardless. Ben Tate (aside from his fumble which gave the Colts their only points of the game) looked pretty good filling in for Foster. Now if Houston can win for their first time in Indianapolis later in the season, I'll really be impressed.

9. Atlanta Falcons (0-1, -4):The top team in the NFC a year ago, the Falcons had their season begin with a sluggish start against the Bears. Matt Ryan did not look like the patient, accurate passer we saw from him last season. In fact, the Urlacher fumble return touchdown looked almost John Beck-like more than it did Matt Ryan-like. Mike Smith is a good coach. They should be able to rebound from this Week 1 disappointment.

10. New York Jets (1-0, -1): The Jets won, but it sure wasn't pretty (in fact, they can thank Tony Romo's anti-clutchness for their win). Anytime you require an outrageous comeback to win the game, there are going to be some question marks. The Jets trailed by 14 in the 4th quarter - an unacceptable amount. QB Mark Sanchez is going to need to get going faster than he did against Dallas if this offense is going to click. Shonn Greene was supposed to be 'the man' of this Jets running game, but only had 10 carries for a mere 26 yards. At least Tomlinson looked good, being the Jets leading receiver. Bottom line, though, you can't expect to win many games being down 14 in the 4th quarter. They have some work to do before Week 2.

11. Detroit Lions (1-0, +0): Detroit was everyone's sexy pick this off-season, and it looks like it wasn't a bad one. Playing a Tampa Bay team which was also considered to be much improved, Detroit came out and looked very strong. Stafford threw for over 300 yards and 3 touchdowns against the Buccaneers, his lone interception to Aqib Talib not really being his fault. Despite losing rookie RB Mikel Leshoure to injury, second-year player Jahvid Best looked pretty good filling in for him. Defensively, the Lions defensive line did not dissapoint analyists (despite losing rookie DT Nick Fairley to injury), putting pressure on Josh Freeman all game as well as shutting down Tampa Bay's running game. The Lions are going to seriously compete for a wildcard spot this year (although the NFC North is too loaded for them to compete for the division, in my opinion).

12. San Diego Chargers (1-0, +0): Thats right, the Chargers actually won an early-season game. Shocking, right? All I have to say is... Mike Tolbert, you're a beast. The man had three touchdowns in Sunday's game to the Vikings, almost appearing invisible to the Vikings defense on passing downs. Defensively, they were able to contain Adrian Peterson well enough and McNabb could not get a consistent passing attack going. And to make matters even better, Mr. Anti-Clutch himself, Kicker Nate Kaeding, is out for the year! That means he couldn't possibly botch the Chargers' chances in the playoffs this season! If this team gets going early with momentum, they're going to be hard to stop.

13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-1, -3): Its only the first game of the year, so the Bucs should try to look past a disappointing Week 1 loss. Unlike a lot of other Week 1 losers, Tampa Bay did not look completely helpless, and made it close. Having said that, the Bucs offense looked suspect against the Lions in this game. Josh Freeman will not have a mere 8 interceptions again this season, as he seemed to regress in that regard. They also had a hard time setting up a running game. While fixing one of these issues should lessen the other, the Bucs will need to get better offensively if they want to win football games.

14. Dallas Cowboys (0-1, +1): The Cowboys really crushed my heart last night. After pushing around the Jets all game and getting a big 4th quarter lead, Tony Romo sparked a number of mistakes that ended up costing the Cowboys the game. Such mistakes are unforgivable, especially considering just how good the Cowboys looked in the first three quarters. WR Dez Bryant looked special, the Dallas defense seemed to be much improved under Rob Ryan... but every phase of the game collapsed in the 4th as the Jets seemed to be able to move the ball at will, got a blocked punt return for a touchdown, and numerous offensive mistakes and miscues cost them opportunities to score points that would've likely sealed the game. Dallas proved they are better than a year ago, but they still have the same problem as ever: not playing well when it matters most.

15. Buffalo Bills (1-0, +8): Buffalo surprised a lot of people with their 41-7 win against the Chiefs in Arrowhead. While I myself said that the Bills would be a much-improved team this season, I never expected the Bills to look as good as they did. Ryan Fitzpatrick put up elite numbers against the Chiefs and while I'm not completely convinced yet that it wasn't more of a Chiefs fluke, Buffalo has a lot of reasons to be excited this season. Their defensive front 7 is much improved, they have a good quarterback under center, and their running attack looked ferocious.

16. New York Giants (0-1, -2): What's wrong with the Giants? As much as my Giants friend is going to disagree with me, its Eli Manning. He looked awful in the pre-season, but many wrote it off as being 'the pre-season', but what's the excuse now? His accuracy leaves a lot to be desired of late, as Manning barely completed half of his passes, and threw an interception too. The Skins may have an improved defense, but you'd expect an "elite" Quarterback like Manning to do better than this. Maybe a 28-14 loss to a team that is supposed to 'suck' this year will force him to try harder.

17. Minnesota Vikings (0-1, +1): While the game started off nice for the Vikings with a Percy Harvin kickoff return for a touchdown, McNabb's debut as a Viking looked anything but strong. McNabb only completed 7 passes for a mere 39 yards against the Chargers, and also threw an interception. Adrian Peterson looked good, though (but that's not much of a surprise). Defensively, Leslie Frazier's team looked okay considering they were playing the high-powered Chargers offense, picking off Philip Rivers twice, but they allowed three touchdowns from Mike Tolbert which led to their 17-24 loss.

18. St. Louis Rams (0-1, -1): Poor Rams. They actually looked like they may have had a shot against Philadelphia, but a number of key injuries really hurt their chances. After his touchdown run, Steven Jackson went out of the game with a strained quad. QB Sam Bradford bruised his right index finger, but he should be able to go against the Giants next Monday. WR Danny Amendola dislocated his shoulder, but the good news is that it doesn't require surgery, so he may be able to come back this season. CB Ron Bartel also was injured, having a neck fracture that will cause him to miss the season. It really couldn't have been any worse for the Rams. They'll need to lick their wounds and rebound or this season could get out of hand. I still consider them the favorite to win the helpless NFC West, but they'll need to be able to survive a brutal early-season schedule to do so.

19. Miami Dolphins (0-1, +0): Miami's home opener was highly surprising. We expected a good defense and a poor offense from Miami this season, but this game was exactly the opposite. Henne looked great, throwing for over 400 yards, two touchdowns. His interception came at the end of the game in garbage time. On the other side of the ball... the Dolphins gave up over 500 yards to Brady, and Benny Sapp & Nolan Carroll proved they could not cover anybody (especially Tight ends). Defensive adjustments could let this team compete for a wildcard, Henne played well enough to win. We'll see if he can keep this up.

20. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-0, +4): The thing that really impressed me about the Jags this week was their defense's ability to stop the run. They limited Chris Johnson to just 24 yards on 9 carries (a YPC of 2.7). Offensively, Maurice Jones-Drew played some of the best football of his career, abusing the Titans' young defensive tackles. Earlier in the game, it looked like he was unstoppable out there. Luke McCown did not look as bad as I thought, but he did fumble the ball twice which will need to be corrected. 16 points may have gotten them a win against the Hasselbeck-led Titans, but it won't be enough for many wins at the NFL level. They'll need to improve offensively.

21. Washington Redskins (1-0, +8): When Rex Grossman predicted the Redskins would win the NFC East, everyone (myself included) thought he was crazy. When he won the starting job, everyone (including myself) thought Mike Shanahan was crazy. Boy did the Skins' prove people wrong in Week 1. Rex Grossman had a spectacular game, throwing for over 300 yards and two touchdowns. While Tim Hightower averaged a mere 2.9 yards per carry, his running style really impressed me. That type of power running isn't commonly seen in the modern NFL, and I think it was a major factor why the Giants defense began to wear down later in the game. Their defense appears to be much improved (it certainly is better on paper this season), infused with new talent like rookie OLB Ryan Kerrigan (who had a freakishly athletic pick six in his first NFL game) and free-agent FS O.J. Atogwe. I won't get my hopes up about this team too fast, though... after all, they were 1-0 last season when they beat Dallas in spectacular fashion, but they looked like a changed team.

22. Kansas City Chiefs (0-1, -6): Oh, how bad I wanted to believe that the Chiefs last season was not a fluke. Looks like they are going to prove me wrong. They were outplayed completely by Buffalo at their home stadium (at which they were 7-1 last regular season). Their defense looked like it couldn't stop a nosebleed, and the offense looked helpless. To make matters worse, 2010 1st round pick Eric Berry, who was looking to become an elite safety, tore his ACL in this game, which will end his season. I still think the Chiefs are a talented team, but they are also a very young team. Growing pains are expected but now one has to really wonder if they can manage to even win a few games. We'll see if Todd Haley is able to improve the level of play we saw in Week 1.

As a side note, this is the play that Eric Berry got hurt on:
If this is considered a "legal play" by current NFL rules, it needs to be changed. I'm not for the 'no contact league' that Goodell seems to be for, but a play like this really has no place in this league.

23. Tennessee Titans (0-1, -2): As expected, the Titans have a ways to go in their rebuilding process. The thing that shocked me, though, was how little they used Chris Johnson. He only had 9 carries in the whole game. Granted, he only had 27 yards, but Johnson has always been a runner that when given enough carries, he is bound to break off a big game-changing run. Johnson getting a mere 9 carries while Hasselbeck threw the ball 34 times is an unforgivable offensive mistake. At least WR Kenny Britt looked spectacular, catching 5 passes for an amazing 136 yards and two touchdowns (including a huge 80-yard touchdown pass to put them back in the ball-game). The Titans could threaten teams this year, but they MUST get more balanced on offense for this to work. Hasselbeck isn't the type of Quarterback that can carry a team anymore.

24. San Francisco 49ers (1-0, +2): Jim Harbaugh won his first game as an NFL head coach against his long-time rival from the college game Pete Carroll. It wasn't completely pretty, however. Frank Gore, once the one glimmer of hope in the 49ers offense, failed to get going and Alex Smith's play was a mixed bag. Luckily, Ted Ginn's returning skills seems to have re-surged, as he scored on both a kick and a punt return in this game to put the game away. Almost makes me sad as a Dolphins fan that we got rid of him (almost...).

25. Arizona Cardinals (1-0, +3): Hoenstly, I don't know who to attribute Cam Newton's record-setting performance to. Part of me wants to get excited about the rookie, but the other part of me wants to scream "What do you expect when you trade your star Cornerback"? Either way, Arizona's defense looked lost against the league's worst offense last season... not a good sign. Offensively, though, Kevin Kolb looked good, throwing for over 300 yards for two touchdowns. He did a great job getting the ball around to all the threats on the Cardinals offense. Having said that, they only beat the Panthers, so we'll see how the Cardinals perform against stronger opponents.

26. Indianapolis Colts (0-1, -6): Did anyone honestly believe the Colts would be THIS bad without Peyton Manning? If you needed material to support an argument about how important Peyton Manning is to his football team, you need not look further than this game. Kerry Collins looked lost out there, and the Colts looked far too one-dimensional on offense. Their defense couldn't stop Houston either despite them being down their star Runningback... the Colts may be the favorites to land Andrew Luck if this play continues. Head coach Jim Caldwell and Offensive coordinator Clyde Christensen will actually have to be actual coaches in Manning's absence (as really, they had likely the easiest coaching positions in football when he was there). If not, they may be needing to brush off their resumes after this season.

27. Carolina Panthers (0-1, +0): In case you missed it, rookie Cam Newton broke the record for the most yardage thrown by a rookie Quarterback in his first game, throwing for an outrageous 422 yards (including a great touchdown pass to Steve Smith). While I'm not entirely sure to attribute this to Cam Newton or the Cardinals' horrendous secondary, this is a good sign for Cam Newton, who I was unsure on. Too bad that Newton's performance could not help them beat the Cardinals. Two things trouble me about this team: The defense did not appear to be able to pressure Kolb, and the Panthers were not able to establish a running game against a defense that was putrid against the run last year (which was part of the reason Newton threw as much as he did). Bad news for Carolina though... MLB Jon Beason will be out for the year with a torn Achilles. This will not be good for the Panthers, as he is a leader on that defense.

28. Oakland Raiders (1-0, +3): Good first step by the Raiders to rebound from all of those off-season losses. Granted, they only beat the Broncos, but they're well on their way to prove they aren't one of the NFL's worst teams. I strongly believe this team isn't going to be seriously competing anytime soon, but this is a nice sign from new Head Coach Hue Jackson. Darren McFadden's a beast. He'll carry this team.

29. Cleveland Browns (0-1, -7): You know, I went out on a limb taking this team as one of my surprise teams this year but the Browns looked like the Browns out there, losing to the team I had as the worst team in the league before Week 1. Colt McCoy did not look good, completing less than half of his passes. Peyton Hillis was stuffed. They allowed a solid day to rookie Andy Dalton, who had looked horrible in pre-season (before Dalton went out with injury). They couldn't stop Cedric Benson, of all players. This team looked absolutely helpless at home against an inferior opponent. Sorry Browns fans, but this team has a lot of work to do.

30. Denver Broncos (0-1, -5): I feel almost betrayed by the Broncos, who I felt had the potential to be one of the major surprises in Week 1. But they couldn't even beat the Raiders, so much for that. They had trouble running the ball, Kyle Orton looked so-so, and the defense I thought was going to put great pressure on Jason Campbell managed a single sack (against the Raiders OLine no less).

31. Cincinnati Bengals (1-0, +1): Cedric Benson had a monster performance against the Browns, rushing for 121 yards and a touchdown... could we be witnessing a resurgence to his 2009 form? If he's available in your fantasy leagues still, pick this man up on potential alone. Andy Dalton looked pretty solid in his NFL debut. He went out with injury later in the game, but he should be okay by Week 2. That being said, they were playing the Browns. I'm not sold on the Bengals, and I still consider them one of the worst teams in the league. However, they're a game closer to proving me wrong.

32. Seattle Seahawks (0-1, -2): Wonder if the Hawks will look into David Garrard after this abysmal performance. The 49ers aren't a very talented team, so this kind of performance is trouble. Tavaris Jackson was like jackal and hide. On the one hand, he did throw two touchdowns, but he had less than 60% completion percentage, averaging to just over 5 yards an attempt. He also threw an interception. They were unable to set up the running game, too, their #1 man Lynch only rushing for 33 yards on 13 carries. Defensively, they did a nice job containing Frank Gore but their special teams looked horrid, giving two special teams touchdowns to Ted Ginn. This is a team that needs to show serious improvement if they want to compete, even in the NFC West.

Billy's Power Rankings

1. Packers (1-0) - Best in the league until they fail to defend their title
2. Patriots (1-0) - Scary, scary, scary offense. When you have the league's best QB, playing at his best, you are a Super Bowl contender.
3. Ravens (1-0) - Flacco needed to beat Roethlisberger. Not only did he beat him, but he outplayed him, and if that weren't enough, he led the Ravens to a massive blowout, and made the Steelers look like a bunch of scrubs. Thats the kind of win the Ravens had to have
4. Bears (1-0) - Dominating win over a team many thought were Super Bowl contenders, considering many wrote them off as a fluke last season
5. Jets (1-0) - Wasn't always pretty, but they showed the heart of team that is capable of winning a Super Bowl
6. Saints (0-1) - Still a very good team, but were clearly outmatched by the Packers. Losing Colston may cause them to faulter early
7. Texans (1-0) - They took care of business, and with Peyton out of the way at least for now, they might finally make the playoffs
8. Lions (1-0) - They beat a good team, and they really dominated them most of the game. They showed they can close a game, and that makes them scary
9. Eagles (1-0) - They were sloppy, and made it look difficult against a Rams team without its best player and several other important players. Won't beat many good teams that way
10. Chargers (1-0) - Special teams are still a problem, and they need more consistency all around, but they won, and the division is theirs for the taking
11. 49ers (1-0) - Did what they had to, win a division game at home. This division is up for grabs, and the 49ers have as good a chance as any other in that division
12. Redskins (1-0) - The last time the Redskins had this much life, they were 6-2 and heading to play the Steelers in 2008. They have the defense, and Rex Grossman finally looks like a QB
13. Bills (1-0) - Bills offense? Fitzpatrick had to remind the fans of Jim Kelly, if only just a little. Buts its something to build on
14. Raiders (1-0) - Solid win, but the penalties are a real problem. You can get away with that kind of goofing off against Denver, but that will never do against the Chargers. McFadden is looking like a star, and Campbell is doing enough to win. Their defensive line is very good
15. Jaguars (1-0) - If not for a wimpy play by Clint Session, this game might have been a shutout. Stuffing Chris Johnson is no easy task, and they did it. They may push the Texans for the division title
16. Cardinals (1-0) - Positives: They won with consistent QB play. Negatives: They gave up 422 Yards to a rookie QB most thought wouldn't be ready by the season opener. Being in the NFC West means that even with that weakness, they could make the playoffs
17. Falcons (0-1) - That was an embarrassing loss. Another game like that and the "New Greatest Show on Turf" will evaporate before it even existed
18. Giants (0-1) - Poor offensive showing exposed a badly depleted secondary. Eli has to play like he's capable of, and the O-line needs to block better. More carries for Jacobs and Bradshaw is a must
19. Steelers (0-1) - Thats was a bad way to start the season. A team they had found a way to beat year after year, and even when they did lose it was close. The Super Bowl loss curse hit them hard
20. Buccaneers (0-1) - They didn't look good at home, which is a really bad thing when playing one of the all time worst road teams. Its made even worse when its the same team and the same place and the same result that kept Tampa out of the playoffs last year
21. Dolphins (0-1) - Henne played lights out football against a Patriots defense that struggled last year to stop the pass. The defense has to be a concern, though, after giving up 517 yards passing and over 600 yards total. That won't cut it in this league
22. Bengals (1-0) - They beat the Browns. They came in without expectations and delivered a win even after losing Dalton. The future got a little brighter.
23. Cowboys (0-1) - Tony Romo looked like himself, from start to finish. Can't win a Super Bowl with finishes like that. More games like this one could easily keep them out of the playoffs
24. Browns (0-1) - Looked bad against a bad team. Considering this team felt it was good enough to win more games than they have in recent years, this may be a blow to their confidence
25. Rams (0-1) - No Steven Jackson means no playoffs. Every game he misses is another game they will be hard pressed to win. If the Cardinals and 49ers continue to play well, the Rams may start having to think about next season
26. Vikings (0-1) - 39 Yards. McNabb was supposed to make this team compete for a Super Bowl now, but he has to play much better, or his year with Minny could end just like it did with Favre
27. Seahawks (0-1) - Ted Ginn killed this team. They played the 49ers very well, but fell short. They must be able to finish games in order to repeat as division champs.
28. Panthers (0-1) - Cam Newton looked spectacular. He gave Panther fans hope, and they will be better than last year. The division is likely too strong this season for them to get out of last place, but there is hope for the future. More impressive than his yardage was his almost 65% completion rate
29. Broncos (0-1) - Not good. Offense was bad. Defense was bad. Also, is Kyle Orton really so much better than Tebow? If he is, then the Broncos are in for a long season
30. Chiefs (0-1) - I said the Chiefs would take a big step back, and they did just that. They will compete for last place in the AFC west. Fans will soon forget the playoff season a year ago
31. Titans (0-1) - They lost week 1 16 - 14, but it was far from a two point game. It was one tackle away from being a blowout and maybe even a shutout. 24 rushing yards from Chris Johnson will never be good enough to win.
32. Colts (0-1) - Losing Peyton was big. Neglecting the rest of the team was even bigger. They put too much emphasis on Peyton, and too little on the "Colts". The championship window for this team is closed.

Predictions for next week

TKN's prediction accuracy: 9-7 (56.25%)
Billy's prediction accuracy: 9-7 (56.25%)
AFS prediction accuracy: 9-7 (56.25%)

Tie ball game here... let's see if Week 2 can break the pack.

Tomlin will try to keep his Steelers from going 0-2.
Seattle (0-1) @ Pittsburgh (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: The Steelers did not look good in Week 1 against the rival Ravens, but they couldn't ask for a better matchup for a rebound as Seattle comes to town for the Steelers' home opener. Everything is pointing to a Steelers win here, I can't imagine Mike Tomlin allowing his team to botch this one, too.
Seattle 16, Pittsburgh 31

Billy: Steelers won't turn the ball over 7 times this week, but still don't play great. Seahawks suffered a devastating loss in SF, and lose again in this one.
Seattle 10, Pittsburgh 31

American Football Simulator:
Seattle 17, Pittsburgh 27

Oakland (1-0) @ Buffalo (1-0)
The Killer Nacho: The Bills looked great playing at Arrowhead last week, will they be able to keep the streak alive against Oakland? I think so. Oakland is one of the NFL's worst teams this season, and Buffalo looks to be one of the up-and-coming teams in the NFL. The Bills should have an easy 2-0 here, which is good considering their schedule looks brutal down the road.
Oakland 17, Buffalo 24

Billy: Both teams looked very solid in week 1, but the Raiders also showed that they don't seem to care abut penalties. Could easily hold them back vs Buffalo.
Oakland 14, Buffalo 27

American Football Simulator:
Oakland 22, Buffalo 24

Arizona (1-0) @ Washington (1-0)
The Killer Nacho:  Both of these teams won last Sunday, but I'm not sold on either of these teams, yet. Still, I will give the nod to Washington since they arguably had a harder opponent last week, and looked overall better. While Kevin Kolb of the Cardinals looked hot against the Panthers, the Redskins have a better defense and their suspect passing attack could be tested again with Rex Grossman coming off a 300 yard performance.
Arizona 20, Washington 24

Billy: Redskins have life for the first time since losing to Pittsburgh in 2008. They continue to show it this week. Fitzgerald plays well, but Skins force field goals one too many times for Arizona to win.
Arizona 23, Washington 24

American Football Simulator:
Arizona 20, Washington 24

McNabb will need to do better than 39 yards to win many games.
Tampa Bay (0-1) @ Minnesota (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: I'm a bit torn who I want to go with in this game. While I feel Tampa Bay is the better team, it is never easy to win in Minnesota. I think I'll go with Tampa Bay here. While the Bucs may again have a hard time running the football, I think Josh Freeman will rebound against a Vikings defense looking weak to the pass. Donovan McNabb should struggle again, facing a good Tampa Bay secondary.
Tampa Bay 17, Minnesota 13

Billy: Brutal battle between two NFC playoff hopefuls. McNabb plays better, but can only force overtime. Bucs rebound.
Tampa Bay 17, Minnesota 14 (OT)

American Football Simulator:
Tampa Bay 22, Minnesota 26

Jacksonville (1-0) @ New York J (1-0)
The Killer Nacho Josh McCown will be tested a lot more against the Jets' ferocious defense in this game. Maurice Jones-Drew will not find the same success running the ball against the Jets that he did when carving up the Titans. All things point to the Jets in this one. Jacksonville will have to do a good job stopping the run and not give up so much yardage as they did to Hasselbeck in Week 1 if they want to have a chance to win this thing.
Jacksonville 13, New York J 20

Billy: Both teams come in after close games, and the Jags play well above their talent level. Sanchez and the Jet defense makes the plays to win.
Jacksonville 14, New York J 20

American Football Simulator:
Jacksonville 19, New York J 23

Chicago (1-0) @ New Orleans (0-1)
The Killer Nacho:  This is a tough one to predict. Chicago looked great in the season opener against Atlanta, but its hard to bet against the Saints in their home opener. Drew Brees looked hot against the Pack, and I think he will continue to do well even against the Bears. This one will be close, but I'll give a slight edge to the Saints due to homefield advantage.
Chicago 24, New Orleans 26

Billy: Bears Defense plays hard and gets the edge with no Colston on the other side. Reggie Bush will be missed in this one.
Chicago 26, New Orleans 16

American Football Simulator:
Chicago 26, New Orleans 24


Cleveland (0-1) @ Indianapolis (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: This is pretty tough - both teams had abysmal Week 1 performances. I have to believe that the Colts will not continue to lose how they lost against Houston, so I'm going go with the Colts. Kerry Collins should have an easier time against the Browns than he did the Texans, especially if the Colts is able to put together half of the running game the Bengals were able to. Wouldn't be shocked if the Colts lost in another blowout, though.
Cleveland 20, Indianapolis 23

Billy: Kerry Collins leads an underwhelming Colts team to another blowout loss. Colts pay the price for overvaluing Peyton and ignoring key weaknesses.
Cleveland 30, Indianapolis 13

American Football Simulator:
Cleveland 24, Indianapolis 26

Kansas City (0-1) @ Detroit (1-0)
The Killer Nacho:  We're talking about one of the worst-looking teams in Week 1 going against one of the hottest-looking teams in Week 1 in their home opener. It's really a no-brainer, here, the Lions shouldn't have much of a problem winning against a demoralized Chiefs team who just lost one of their best defensive players, Eric Berry. Matthew Stafford is poised to have another good game, as the Chiefs allowed four touchdown passes to Buffalo's Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Kansas City 10, Detroit 24

Billy: Chiefs continue to decline after lasts years fluke. Lions defense has a field day and Megatron will be unstoppable.
Kansas City 10, Detroit 28

American Football Simulator:
Kansas City 21, Detroit 23

Baltimore (1-0) @ Tennessee (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: The Ravens looked like an elite team Week 1, dominating the reigning AFC champs in all phases of the game. Look for them to continue to look dominant against a Tennessee team still trying to find its identity. Chris Johnson had a hard time against Jacksonville, so its hard to imagine him doing much better against Baltimore.
Baltimore 27, Tennessee 14

Billy: Ravens continue to roll, and Tennessee continues to struggle. Chris Johnson still won't have 100 yards rushing on the season once this game ends.
Baltimore 31, Tennessee 6

American Football Simulator:
Baltimore 26, Tennessee 23

#1 looked like a #1 last week, but will he continue vs the champs?
Green Bay (1-0) @ Carolina (0-1)
The Killer Nacho:  A game putting the reigning champs against the team with the #1 draft pick a year ago. This game will really let us see just how good Cam Newton is. We see that he can shread a depleted Arizona secondary, but what about the reigning champs? Unfortanutely for Newton, I don't think even another performance like he had against the Cards will lead to a W. Green Bay's offense should have no trouble scoring against Carolina's.
Green Bay 28, Carolina 17

Billy: As Devastator once said, "Prepare for extermination!"
Green Bay 48, Carolina 0

American Football Simulator:
Green Bay 29, Carolina 23

Dallas (0-1) @ San Francisco (1-0)
The Killer Nacho:  Dallas needs to forget about last week's 4th-quarter loss against the Jets and just calm down. The Cowboys are a good football team, but they seem to lack focus in the clutch. Tony Romo has an easy game in the 49ers ahead of him. This is a perfect game to help the Cowboys rebound after a heartbreaking Week 1 loss.
Dallas 27, San Francisco 17

Billy: Cowboys rebound from a disaster in New York and do what they always do, crush an average team to restore the hype that they won't live up to.
Dallas 38, San Francisco 17

American Football Simulator:
Dallas 23, San Francisco 25

Cincinnati (1-0) @ Denver (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: Okay, Denver, you proved me wrong last week against the Oakland Raiders, but here you are with another easy game against the Bengals. I don't think my read on the Broncos could be so bad that they could lose against BOTH of my Bottom 2 teams (from my Week 1 Power Rankings), right? Screw Week 1, I'm going with Denver here.
Cincinnati 13, Denver 17

Billy: This is primed to be an ugly game, and either team could win it. The edge goes to Cinnci, who played better week 1.
Cincinnati 13, Denver 10

American Football Simulator:
Cincinnati 21, Denver 22

Houston (1-0) @ Miami (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: The Dolphins are never able to beat these guys, no matter what. But you know what, who cares? After a hugely disappointing Week 1 loss, I think the defense can come together. Offensively, I think Chad Henne can do just as well against the rebuilding Houston defense just like he did against the Patriots. Trends are meant to be broken. Go Miami.
Houston 27, Miami 30

Billy: Texans win because they always beat Miami. How or why is irrelevant.
Houston X + 1, Miami X

American Football Simulator:
Houston 24, Miami 26


San Diego (1-0) @ New England (1-0)
The Killer Nacho:  This could be the game of the week, in my opinion. San Diego has always started off slow, but has already beaten the trend by beating Minnesota Week 1. However, New England's offense looked god-like against Miami on Monday Night, and I don't think San Diego will do any better against Tom Brady's accurate passes to one of several receivers than the Dolphins did.
San Diego 24, New England 30

Billy: Tough game for San Diego, especially without regular season super kicker Kaeding. Haynesworth will give Rivers fits, and Brady will show why he's still the league's best.
San Diego 17, New England 23 (OT)

American Football Simulator:
San Diego 23, New England 27

Philadelphia (1-0) @ Atlanta (0-1)
The Killer Nacho: Both teams have issues we saw in Week 1. While Philly was able to come away with a victory, Atlanta was not. For Atlanta to win, we need to see a much better offensive performance than we saw against the Bears from Matt Ryan. For the Eagles to come away victorious, we need to see better play defensively against the run as well as better offensive line play. I expect John Abraham and the Falcons pass-rush to get back on track in this game. As for my pick, I'll go with the Falcons at home to upset the Dream Team in a close one.
Philadelphia 26, Atlanta 27

Billy: Vick returns and plays like Vick of old... 100+ rush yards, less than 200 pass yards, and about 52% completion. He will bring back memories of his old days to the people of Atlanta. Atlanta tried to build for a Super Bowl, but an 0-2 start will be hard to overcome.
Philadelphia 37, Atlanta 25

American Football Simulator:
Philadelphia 30, Atlanta 29

What has happened to Eli? He must play better.
St. Louis (0-1) @ New York G (1-0)
The Killer Nacho: I would find it hard to believe for the Giants not to rebound against a depleted Giants team (they can thank their divisional rival Eagles for that). St. Louis will be without their #1 RB, WR, and CB. If Eli Manning can't find a way to get a W here in their home opener, he won't have to worry about not being put on people's Top 10 Quarterback list. He'll have to worry about people putting him on their Bottom 10 Quarterback list. The Rams looked suspect against the run, as LeSean McCoy cut them up. I think Bradshaw may be in for a good game.
St. Louis 16, New York G 21


Billy: Injury Bowl! Eli makes the difference, and Cadillac will look like a Ford. Rams score in garbage time to make it look close.
St. Louis 17, New York G 27

American Football Simulator:
St. Louis 20, New York G 26

Question of the Week

Last week, I asked my viewers "Which NFL team do you feel had the best off-season in 2011?" between the Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots, Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys, or Other. The Philadelphia Eagles won the poll with 66% of the vote! The New England Patriots had the rest of the votes, with 33%.

This week, let's see how readers feel about my new co-author, Billy. Quite simply, "At the end of the 2011 season, who (or what) will have the better prediction record?" between The Killer Nacho, Billy, or The American Football Simulator. It's all tied so far! Vote on the right hand side of my blog!

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