NFL Week 1 Spar

Joe to Greg

Well, we can finally say it. It’s football season my friend, best of luck this year (in fantasy and with the Ravens). More on that later but for now, give me your biggest surprise, some standouts from the weekend, and some players that may need to step it up in Week 2.

Greg to Joe

Fantasy football was rough in Week 1. I can’t make any more ridiculous line up mistakes like in our league that Chris runs. I also would have won the 10 bucks in Week 1 for our yahoo league if LeSean McCoy didn’t go off against the Redskins, but I will have plenty more chances to win weeks.

Wes Welker's 3rd Down Drop that was Not Challenged (Screenshot of NBC Telecast)

Wes Welker’s 3rd Down Drop that was Not Challenged (Screenshot of NBC Telecast)

The actual football games had some crazy things happen. The Ravens got crushed by the Broncos. Just annihilated… It was hard to watch the second half. The tide turned tremendously on the non-challenge of Wes Welker‘s 3rd down drop. I wrote about that game before so I won’t get too much into it.

My biggest surprise was EJ Manuel and the Bills taking it to the Patriots after playing only one preseason game. The Patriots have some serious work to do in my opinion. I also saw that Brady is not working well with the rookie receivers in practice, and with Amendola out, they are going to have to perform for the Patriots to win. I thought the Patriots would be top class because of Brady, and maybe they are. It would just mean the Bills are a lot better than we thought.

David Wilson really screwed me. And I AM NOT happy about it. HOW DO YOU FUMBLE TWICE?!?! You know its your weakness. Did you not work on it in the offseason? Did Coughlin not teach him how to hold the football? Did you need to lift more to make sure defenders couldn’t strip the ball from you? God, I am so mad at David Wilson. I do think he’ll bounce back though and have a good season.

What are your thoughts on your questions? And what did you think of Chip Kelly’s offense on Monday night?

Joe to Greg

You rightfully beat me in our one league but I got off to a good start in our ESPN league. Drew Brees lit it up for me and I had all but one starter fail to reach double digits so I like where this season is headed. Back to real football, I think I was most surprised about the competitiveness of some of the weaker teams from last year. Starting with the Buffalo Bills giving the New England Patriots a scare. EJ Manuel made some nice throws but simply couldn’t play for the whole 60 minutes and keep up. While the score was close towards the end, the Bills had some questionable drives in the fourth quarter but nonetheless impressed many people, including me (I’m going to refrain from discussing the Patriots situation until more games are played/Gronk comes back within a reasonable timespan). Another instance is the Oakland Raiders, lead by former Buckeye Terrelle Pryor. Rushing for over 100 yards and throwing for over 200 yards was impressive in a near underdog win against Andrew Luck and the Colts. Luck showed off his knack for winning games in the fourth quarter once again but Pryor had a chance to bring the Raiders back. Unfortunately, his 2 interceptions on the day doomed the Raiders. Look out for this Raiders team to win a game or two more because of Pryor’s playmaking abilities.

    Adrian Peterson went off on the first play of the season for him, but other than that was outperformed by Reggie Bush, who was showing off some of his old school USC speed. Colin Kaepernick performed as well as anybody and the scary thing was, he was using his arm most of the day. RGIII certainly didn’t look like the player we know him to be. I think that game was more of him shaking off the rust than anything else.

    Stevan “Needs a nickname related to fumbles” Ridley drove me nuts on Sunday. Fumbling once without anyone even touching him. It’s ridiculous how good he is at fumbling the ball. Wilson and Ridley need to step it up, but luckily for Ridley, he’s the Patriots only option which may mean he’ll be let out of the dog house a little early.

    My thoughts on Chip Kelly’s offense can pretty much be summed up in a conversation I had with a true Philadelphia Eagles fan, Andrew Gerdes.

This was a short text exchange during the first half and some of the second half when the offense was clicking.

Joe: “I know I love watching this, I can only imagine how you feel”

Gerds: “This is insane”

Joe: “It’s incredible honestly, its a work of art”

Gerds: “They’ve maybe had 5 five plays where they haven’t had positive yardage”

It was entertaining to watch and that above all else is why I like it. Its new, you really never know who will get the ball, and its effective BUT time will tell. Remember, it’s only week 1…

Greg to Joe

RGIII did not look good at all. It was bad. He looked timid and just could not perform physically like we saw all of last season, but if he was at full health, the Redskins would have been in that game the whole way. The ‘Skins’ defense played extraordinarily well considering they were facing a brand new NFL offensive system. That being said, the Eagles offense is going to be filthy all year. Early I wrote for half a year and maybe the whole year, but I have to think its going to be the whole year now. They really do have a lot of talent on offense and the O-Line doesn’t have to be great because the offense is designed to tire out defenses so they will be facing D-Lines that are constantly fatigued. Their skill players are awesome, and if Vick can stay upright, the Eagles could be really good by just simply outscoring other teams and not worrying too much about how bad their defense is. I think the first time that team will be tested fully will be against the Broncos and Giants in Weeks 4 and 5. I think the Broncos will do ungodly things to that defense, much like the Ravens game. The reason I call the Giants a test is they have the offense (assuming Eli, Cruz, and Nicks are healthy) to keep up with the Eagles considering the Eagles defensive woes. I hate the Eagles and I can’t stand Eagles fans, but I will admit that offense will be one of a kind.

EJ Manuel at the 2013 NFL Draft (Photo Cred: Jason DeCrow/AP)

EJ Manuel at the 2013 NFL Draft (Photo Cred: Jason DeCrow/AP)

I love EJ Manuel. He definitely wasn’t as good as Cam Newton was in college, but he has a similar body type. With Doug Marrone at the helm in Buffalo, I am expecting big things out of him. I made a bold prediction for Week 2 in my weekly article at BucStop.com. I am calling for a Buffalo victory at home against Carolina, not too crazy considering they at 3 point home dogs. The crazy part is I’ve got EJ Manuel throwing for 3 touchdowns and running another 1 in to out play Cam Newton in his second NFL game. The pocket passer will never die, but the running quarterback, when used properly, can bring a whole new weapon to an offensive system. That is what Manual will do for the Bills and if Spiller can get his head straight, they could surprise some people.

You have a bold prediction for next week and do you think someone will disappoint fantasy owners in Week 2 much like David Wilson disappointed me in Week 1?

Joe to Greg

Not too many bold predictions. I say that RGIII burns the Packers much like Kaepernick was able to do last week. Thinking that Aaron Rodgers starts a season 0-2 seems weird. Regardless, I think one other surprise could be Eli getting his first Manning Bowl victory, currently losing (0-2). This is tough or at least down right bold. Peyton‘s either going to go off again or it’ll be a shootout coming down to come of the last possession in the fourth. I hope it’s an entertaining game throughout.

Some fantasy disappointments… I can see Frank Gore pissing me off this weekend with a subpar performance playing in the Seattle opener. Gore does get the chance to play there every season so he could bring experience to the table, but every now and then he drops a goose egg. Other than Gore, some tough calls to make… Chris Johnson against the Houston Texans. Yes the Texans let Philip Rivers almost beat them, but their defense is still a force. Combined with Johnson’s recent fantasy struggles dating back to last year, I like the chances. I’m calling a big day from Terrelle Pryor. Something about him makes me feel like he can have a little success. Even if that is for a game, I’ll take my chances since he’s playing a Jaguars team that gave up 28 to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Any big performers this week?

Greg to Joe

The line for the Jags-Raiders game is ridiculous in my opinion. I would say that the Raiders are so talentless (much like the Houston Astros) they don’t deserve to ever be more than a 3 point favorite. I say 3 points because home teams automatically get a 3 points deducted in the books for NFL games. I can see Pryor going off, but I think that MJD will have a big game as well. There just won’t be a lot of passing. It will be like a game from the 60’s.

I have to wholeheartedly disagree with your Redskins assessment. Kaepernick is much better than RGIII right now, considering health. RGIII won’t be able to tear up the Packers like Kaepernick did. I’m calling for a Packers blowout actually. RGIII is trying to recover on a short week from his first NFL game since an ACL reconstruction. The Redskins defense is probably still trying to catch their breath from Monday. The Packers offense is deadly and will carve up the Redskins in a different way than the Eagles did. I think the Packers just take it to them and don’t let up in their first game at Lambeau for the new season. Your Eli vs Peyton prediction is outrageously bold. I think the Broncos beat them pretty bad because the Giants won’t be able to run any better than the Ravens did so the Broncos will just gear up and attack Eli.

My big performers include the EJ Manuel prediction, but I also think Alshon Jeffery will get a TD or two. The Bears offense is remade under Mark Trestman, and they will try to score as quickly as possible to take the game out of Adrian Peterson’s hands. I am starting Jeffery over Mike Wallace in one of my leagues. That is partially because of Jeffery, but it also has to do with the concern I have will Wallace and Tannehill‘s chemistry (even with chemistry issues, I see them beating the Colts in Indianapolis). I’m just pumped for Week 2 to start tonight in Foxboro (the line for that game is ridiculous in my opinion, but we’ll see if I am wrong).

Good luck in fantasy this week and to the Pats tonight.

Greg Danchik and Joe Meola

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