Tuesday, September 15, 2009

NFL Week 1 wrapup

Week 1 in the NFL...

  • Poor Josh McDaniel got his shot at an NFL head coaching job, and immediately found himself living the book of Job. And then he got the luckiest break of the NFL season thus far, maybe for the whole season, when a deflected ball landed in the hands of Brandon Stokely, miraculously turning Denver's season-opening loss to Cincinnati into a win.


  • Of course, it never would have happened had the Bengals had their safeties deep enough to prevent a receiver from getting behind them.


  • I didn't see any of the Jets-Texans game, so my question is this - what happened to the Houston team that so many pundits assured me was ready to start competing in the AFC South?


  • How much longer do the Panthers pretend that Jake Delhomme is still an NFL quarterback? Where do they turn when the problem they so studiously avoided this past offseason refuses to be avoided any longer?


  • I was shocked to hear that Urlacher's wrist will keep him out for the year. Absolutely shocked. He's not swinging a baseball bat or taking foul shots or throwing passes or writing longhand. It's difficult for me to conceive a wrist injury, even one requiring surgery, that wouldn't be sufficiently "healed" in, say, three months, that it couldn't be splinted, padded and taped in such a fashion that a linebacker could play.


  • Just so there's no question about it, that previous comment should not be construed as saying, "what a wimp that Urlacher is" or anything remotely like it. I'm certain that, if they're going to put him on IR, there's a good and legitimate and necessary reason for it. I'm just expressing surprise that such was the case.


  • Better than expected: Buffalo offense. Oakland. Detroit offense. NY Jets. Jacksonville defense.


  • Worse than expected: Houston. New England offense. Carolina. Indianapolis offense. San Diego defense.


  • Evidence that you should be listening carefully to what I say:

    Miami at Atlanta - "The Dolphins were a fluke last year. (Well, weren't the Falcons? OK, maybe a little bit.) They'll be lucky to get to 9 wins this year. This won't be one of them."

    Detroit at New Orleans - "On November 4, 2007, the Detroit Lions beat 44-7, raising their record to 6-2. Since then, they are 1-23. They've lost 17 consecutive games. That streak will end sometime in 2009, but it's going to get longer first. It's tough to see how they stay within 21 of the Saints in New Orleans."

    Cincinnati at Baltimore - "Obviously a Dallas team coached by Wade Phillips and quarterbacked by Tony Romo will melt down and fall apart. But not until November, or possibly even December. They'll look dominant for the first month, and Tampa Bay's the first victim."


  • Evidence that you should be listening carefully to what I say (and betting the opposite):

    San Diego at Oakland - "Look, sometimes there just isn't any commentary necessary. Does anyone anywhere think that Oakland is within two touchdowns at any point in the second half? It just doesn't whether San Diego is as good as advertised or not - Oakland's a mess. The only chance for the Raiders would be if the game were decided by a bare-knuckles fight between Tom Cable and Norv Turner at midfield after the coin toss. Given that that's not going to happen, neither is an Oakland cover."

    NY Jets at Houston - "I don't believe in the Jets. But I also don't believe in the Texans. Given that the home team has got more of a track record with a head coach not coaching his first game, and a QB not making his NFL debut, I've got to go with Houston."


  • For the week:
    Winners: 12-41
    ATS: 8-8-0


  • For the season:
    Winners: 12-4
    ATS: 8-8-0




1 - Special behind-the-scenes bonus coverage of the Lyford NFL picks process:

When I make my picks, I denote the pick by bolding the chosen team. Sometimes, I screw up in the spreadsheet that I use, and accidentally bold the wrong team. Usually, I get these corrected during the commentary process, or live with the results.

This week, I ended up with Tampa bolded against Dallas. If you read the comment, however ("Obviously a Dallas team coached by Wade Phillips and quarterbacked by Tony Romo will melt down and fall apart. But not until November, or possibly even December. They'll look dominant for the first month, and Tampa Bay's the first victim."), it is abundantly clear that I picked the Cowboys to both win and cover. I'm taking credit for being right on that one.

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