– I put in ‘sexy Kansas City Chiefs fan’ this is what I got –
Well well well, one week into the new season and here’s what we know:
Elite: NEW ENGLAND (yet again), NEW ORLEANS
As Good As We Knew They Were: BALTIMORE, GREEN BAY
Surprisingly good: SEATTLE (Pete Carroll is back baby!), KANSAS CITY, HOUSTON, DETROIT, TENNESSEE
Surprisingly awful: SAN FRANCISCO, NEW JERSEY (Rex Ryan, um, baby!), WASHINGTON, PHILADELPHIA, DALLAS
As Awful As We Knew They Were: ST LOUIS, OAKLAND, JACKSONVILLE
Hanging On By Reputation Only: INDIANAPOLIS, SAN DIEGO
Desperately Aiming For A Winning Season: MIAMI, ATLANTA
And they say its only College Football that has a meaningful regular season.
The surprise that shouldn’t have been was Kansas City. That’s what comes of being a small-market team in a fly-over state with an awful record the last 10 years.
Factoid: Kansas is technically flatter than a pancake. And it feels it. It’s just wheat and corn 6 feet high the size of the North Island. There’s a reason Dorothy left.
The total clusterf*ck that was the Herm Edwards tenure still sullies the KC reputation 2 years after his ouster. Herm is now like the PE teacher from hell stuffed into a loud suit on TV, with a nice line in yelling over his fellow commentators. But it boggles my mind that he not only was an NFL Head Coach, but for TWO teams. Only now, 6 years down the line are the Jets finally being rebuilt and rebranded, and the new coaching staff installed in KC this offseason is also paying immediate dividends.
Charlie Weis, who flamed out spectacularly as a Head Coach at Notre Dame, and Romeo Crenell (ditto with the Browns) are now running the KC Offence and Defence respectively. With ex-Patriot QB Matt Cassell at QB, this is New England West. That’s not a bad template.
– Ok, so not all of Kansas is flat –
PITTSBURGH STEELERS v TENNESSEE TITANS
Pittsburgh are still in the ‘prevent defence’ part of their season, with Big Ben still out on suspension. Dennis Dixon is actually pretty competent replacing him, but Tennessee are rolling already and are at home.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS v CLEVELAND BROWNS
The Chiefs will destroy the Browns, who are now in the second decade of their rebuilding. On current progress (last week they lost to TAMPA BAY, who it may surprise some to realise are still in the NFL) it may take the rest of my lifetime before they are any good. Imagine you are 12 living in Cleveland. Your basketball team just lost its mega-star and only point of interest, your football team is a disgrace, your once great baseball team in steady decline. You are an atheist, with an unhealthy interest in guns.
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES v DETROIT LIONS
Uh-oh. That sound you hear is 70,000 obese Philly fans grinding knives. And it’s Kevin Kolb’s head they’re after. If he doesn’t start looking like the Kolb of 2009, then his brief glimpse of the starter’s gig is gone, and we will welcome the Vick! Vick! Vick! era back. A scrambling black QB with mental issues – that went well last time didn’t it? Didn’t it? Meanwhile Detroit are probably destined to keep losing games they should win for just a bit longer yet. But once Stafford is back, it won’t be long til that changes…
MIAMI DOLPHINS v MINNESOTA VIKINGS
This is the real test for Favre as a Viking 2.0. He’s at home, in a dome. He’s ALMOST learnt all the names of his receivers.
– Broncos Cheerleader and a saddled horse. What else could a man want? –
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS v DENVER BRONCOS
Denver have the advantage of being at home, and they’ll need it. Seattle look VERY good, while the Broncos seem to be carrying on from the disastrous late-2009. All the doomsayers re the Josh McDaniel era (he’s too young, too brash, too annoying) look like they’re going to have a lot of ammunition this year. He’ll have Tebow praying for him though, which is nice.
SEATTLE WIN (if they get a huge lead by the half)
ST LOUIS RAMS v OAKLAND RAIDERS
The sh*t sandwich of the weekend, and our first round in the wooden spoon contest for 2010. Its games like this that really make you wish that the NFL had relegation. It would make games like this totally compelling. Too late now sadly. What’s the over/under on bonehead plays, penalties, or gains under 5 yards?
HOUSTON TEXANS v WASHINGTON REDSKINS
Last week’s Washington win doesn’t count. Dallas played so badly, they might not have beaten St Louis. The Redskins look out of rhythm, and poorly coached. The Texans are FINALLY looking like the solid team they’ve been on paper for the last 3 years. The addition of a running game has knotted the system together, and they are going to beat a lot of teams this year.
– admittedly Beckham advertises cooler brands –
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS v NEW JERSEY JETS
You’re playing with the big boys here Rex.
Tom Brady is now the highest paid player in the NFL, and he has really gorgeous hair this year. Sort of like Jennifer Aniston’s. It looks so wistful when it falls over his face just so. Ah.
He is the American David Beckham, except that he’s actually won the highest prize in his sport 3 times, has a better looking wife who earns more than he does, and is about a foot taller.
His 2009 season coming off his horrendous injury was regarded by most as disappointing yet he had his second best year ever as a pro and was only bested by Superbowl winning Drew Brees in overall stats. He’s so good, we forget he’s good.
He is what Brett Favre pretends to be. A brilliant QB willing to take chances who is a decent guy off the field. And in the ‘whose life would you take’ stakes its between him and Derek Jeter. (Looking for a pied-a-terre in NY? Derek has just the place for you)
Randy Moss can keep bitching about his contract, but unless something terrible happens to Brady, Wes Welker, or the smartest defence in football then start pencilling them in for the payoffs, and perhaps more.
NEW ENGLAND WINS. Tom looks good doing it.
– Mark Tierney