Tonight’s the night so many of us have been waiting for THE NFL BEGINS…
Kinda like "Batman Begins." Or maybe not. This is preseason and doesn’t count, but we love football so much we just want to see the players play. Even the lowly Chiefs will likely have a decent crowd at Arrowhead tomorrow. Maybe even 45,000. That would be a great start for them. Past years preseason games have drawn 30-40 thousand tops. They haven’t had any sellouts in years during the regular season. Aside from some phony numbers in the paper. But those include season ticket holders who aren’t at the game. And then some.
So who are THE teams this season?
Who are the top picks to go to, and possibly win the Super Bowl? The Philadelphia Eagles are the sexy pick to win it all. They’ve added monster talent to the team and yesterday – get this – added ace receiver Steve Smith. The rich get richer.
Where were the Chiefs on that one?
Oh, I forgot. We already have great receiving talent. Who needs Steve Smith? The Eagles have a big offense and a solid defense. But can Michael Vick do it all year and through the playoffs? I say NO. He’s mentally of, let’s say, "questionable status." And the old statement – you aren’t suppose to say out loud but I will because I’m unfiltered – Vick is a black quarterback. They don’t win Super Bowls (except for Doug Williams in 1988). But Vick has other issues too, so we’ll see.
The Eagles were an extremely good team last year and better this year on paper, but I still say no.
My NFC pick is of course the team I picked last year, the GREEN BAY PACKERS. I say they go to and likely win the Super Bowl.
Maybe New England shows up and stops them in the big dance. But the Pack’s Aaron Rodgers is THE ELITE quarterback now. He’s an A. The other super elite guy, Tom Brady, is an A. But Tom’s a step down because of age and injury. Don’t get me wrong, he’s still outstanding.
And what about Peyton Manning? He may be the all-time best quarterback, but possible injuries is a big question mark and Manning’s team is fading. They might be the big boy on the way down. So it’s all on Manning’s shoulders. Green Bay, on the other hand, gets all their injured guys back. Like super tight end, Jamichael Finley to go with Greg Jennings. I like the Packers. I say they win 12 or 13 games.
My pick to win it all: Green Bay Packers.
In the AFC – now the weaker league – it’s pretty clear here too. New England added value with Chad Ochocinco and Albert Haynesworth. If their poor defense improves to average or better and Tom Brady stays stays healthy, they’ll be a hard train to stop and could win the AFC. The other top team, the Pittsburgh Steelers always show up. You look up and after they’re like 6-4, they wind up 11-5 and going to the Super Bowl. Hey, Big Ben is still a winner and so are the Steelers.
Sure the Jets and Baltimore could break through, but so far, uh, they’re just not close.
There are other maybes like Atlanta with our guy Tony G. Or the Dallas Cowboys, who are quickly becoming the Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL. The Chargers, too many guys left. I think that window is closed. Yes, the Chargers could win the west, but I see them going no further.
And the Jets quarterback position is not stable yet. The other dark horse – and I do like them – is the Tampa Bay Buc’s, with the K-State quarterback Josh Freeman tearing it up. Very solid team and a contender. The Giants are streaky and nobody buys into Eli Manning. Detroit might make some noise, but they’re not a Super Bowl contender yet.
The Chiefs will be a better team with an impossible schedule, so they’re out as of Day One.
Again, if they win 7 or more games it will be a good season for them.
Here’s the deal; it’s like Len Dawson once said, "When your team walks on the field and you KNOW YOU ARE GOING TO WIN, that’s when you matter. You can’t just hope to win."
The Chiefs haven’t been that team that knows since, well, maybe Dawson. I’ll give them the 90’s. Those were good teams, just poorly led by Carl Peterson. He blew two Super Bowls. Thanks, Carl,
"Kickers are a dime a dozen, who needs Nick Lowery when you have Lin Elliott." Peterson told me once.
His other genius move was that we needed to start Elvis Grbac instead of Rich Gannon. Elvis was the future. Good call Carl. That cost us the 1997 season. Crappy Rich went on to the Super Bowl with Oakland and was the MVP. You were a genius Carl.
Super Bowl Final: New England vs. Green Bay: winner, tough call: Green Bay.
This is based on no serious injury to the quarterbacks.
Enjoy the season!