Inside the NFL – Day One
Last week I expressed my opinion on five teams where I thought the general perception of most people might not match the reality. I feel very confident that I have a great beat on many teams, but there are some that are too unpredictable right now to offer proper analysis. Also, some teams are simply already well-known and correctly valued, so there is little benefit to you in me restating the obvious. With that in mind, let’s take a much closer look at five teams. We’ll examine New England and Minnesota today, Atlanta and Tampa Bay tomorrow and a special edition, inside look at the Buffalo Bills on Saturday.
New England – Much can be said about New England, but first I just want to remind everybody about one thing – The New England defense stinks! It always has. In week three when the Pats lost to the Bills there was plenty of “world is falling apart” talk about the Pats defense. The perception is that it is no good, and will sometimes cost them games. But this lack of defense is nothing new. They barely had a defense when they went 16-0 in 2007 and they had a horrible defense last year when they went 14-2. So don’t worry about their defense when picking New England games. They control the game with their offense and field position anyways. Just remember when New England plays a high-powered offense don’t expect them to cover big points. Dallas -7 last week was a perfect example.
Minnesota – I think I have given up on them four separate times already this season. I should have stuck with the first three but now I have reason to believe they could be under-valued. In the opening weeks they didn’t play poorly but could not pull out any victories. My theory for this was that McNabb was the problem. They had the talent to hang with some decent teams, but couldn’t pull it out at the end. When it is late in the game there are few surprises; it comes down to simple execution, x’s and o’s. Unfortunately for the Vikings, McNabb just couldn’t deliver. I thought the new starting quarterback, Christian Ponder, would be a disaster as well, but through two weeks he has been competent. This might be all Minnesota needs. We know they are not playing for a division title, but they should also be better than a 1-6 squad. With the way Peterson is running they should be able to win a few games just getting a C- from their QB. (Note: Their schedule does get a lot tougher the rest of the season after this Carolina match-up)
That’s it for now, but please check back tomorrow evening for “Inside the NFL – Day Two”.
…And that is the last word.