Lookin’ Good for Week 2

2 of 2

In the NFC South, all the teams are 0-1, so losing this week won’t be as dire as it might usually be.  The last place team could be 0-2 where the first place team could only be looking at 1-1.  No matter what the outcome from these games, there will still be plenty of time to make up that small distance in the long season ahead.  Three of the four teams in the division are playing at home this week and that should help somewhat, although I’d still bet against Carolina as they welcome in the defending Super Bowl champs.

New Orleans hosts Chicago, who took apart another NFC South opponent last week, dispatching Atlanta 30-12.  Speaking of the Falcons, they are home against the “dream team” Eagles.  While the Dirty Birds look to even their record at .500, it’s not going to be easy, as Philly had a solid road win last week in St. Louis.  The only team to hit the road will be Tampa Bay, who must make their way up to Minnesota to battle the 0-1 Vikings.  This is one of four games matching winless teams from week one.  We also have four other games where both teams won last week.

In Pittsburgh, the Steelers will hope to get better after last week’s beat-down in Baltimore.  Seattle, losers in San Francisco last week, will hope to prove a good opponent, but it might be a little too much to ask of the Seahawks against what’s sure to be a fired up home crowd (and a fired up Steelers team).

Cleveland will go to Indianapolis on the heels of a disappointing loss to the Bengals.  The Browns were thought to be heading in the right direction, but last week’s result in the Battle of Ohio has to have them scratching their heads.  The Colts return home and, again without Peyton Manning, will hope to play better after being totally outperformed against the Texans last week.

The aforementioned Buccaneers take on the Vikings, who lost late to the Chargers in week one.  Both teams had to be disappointed with the results of their games, but the Buccaneers, thought to be a contender by some this season, still have room to maneuver in the NFC South due to the rest of the division losing last week as well.  The Vikings on the other hand really need a win to keep pace in the North.  They were the only team in the division to suffer a loss last week and cannot afford to get too far behind too early.

In the Rams-Giants game this week, there seems to be more at stake.  Both teams were expected to challenge for playoff spots this season, and with many other contenders off to fast starts, this could turn out to be an early season elimination game as far as tie-breakers are concerned.  Being on the road in New York, along with Sam Bradford’s injured throwing hand and Steven Jackson’s absence could prove too much for the Rams in this one.

In the four games featuring teams that won last week, the real surprise has to be the Oakland-Buffalo match-up.  Neither team was picked by many to do very much this year, and both got off to solid road wins last week.  This could be a game we look back on as the start of the “surprise” run of the season.  It always happens, we just never know who it will be.

The biggest game of the week just might be the San Diego-New England game in Foxboro.  Each team won last week and this could very well be a playoff preview, with both teams expected to make deep runs into the playoffs this season. Two of the league’s top quarterbacks lead high-powered offenses into the game and it could be a harbinger of even more big numbers in this one.

Lots of good match-ups litter the schedule once again this week, and I can’t wait to get to ‘em.  Is it Sunday yet?