The 2012 season started out a bit crazy, which is exactly what NFL fans want. Pick 'em leagues aside, the upsets that occurred across the board made fantastic football to watch in Week 1.
The Giants, reigning Super Bowl champs, fell to their division rival Dallas. RGIII outplayed Drew Brees for the win. The 49ers shocked the Green Bay Packers. The Cardinals, despite their faulty quarterback situation, beat the red-hot Russell Wilson-led Seahawks and let's not forget that the Cleveland Browns almost upset the Eagles, losing by only one-point, largely due to a poor decision to not go for the two-point conversion.
So here's a look at what to expect in Week 2:
Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers
Winner: Green Bay Packers
The Bears looked sharp in Week 1, but they looked sharp against a team that was 2-14 in 2011 and fields a lackluster defense. The Bears will face stiffer competition in Week 2, especially with the Packers suffering a tough loss against the 49ers. Aaron Rodgers will want redemption in Week 2, and he is playing in the familiarity of Lambeau Field. It'll be close, but the Packers will pull out the win.
Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars
Winner: Houston Texans
I thought for sure that Jacksonville had the win in Week 1, but Adrian Peterson came out strong in his first game post-injury and helped the Vikings take the win in overtime. Houston started out slow in the first quarter on Sunday, allowing the Dolphins a 3-0 lead, but responded with 24 points in the second quarter, pretty much sealing the fate of the game. Look for Houston to do much of the same in Week 2 to Jacksonville, with Jacksonville's only hope being stronger performances from Maurice Jones-Drew and Justin Blackmon.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New York Giants
Winner: New York Giants
The Giants are in the same mindset in Week 2 as the Packers are. They suffered a tough loss to division rival Dallas and will need to redeem themselves at home in Week 2. The Giants have all the tools needed to win, especially with last week's offensive performances by Ahmad Bradshaw and Martellus Bennett. Tampa Bay also looked good in Week 1, upsetting Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. I just feel that Tampa Bay will not be able to keep up with the Giants, especially with the Giants having the home field advantage.
Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals
Winner: Cincinnati Bengals
This is an easy one. Brandon Weeden threw four picks for no touchdowns in Week 1 (a quarterback rating of 5.1), and the Browns total yardage for the day was a measly 210 yards. Yes, the matchup was a close one with the Eagles, but that was because the Browns took advantage of four interceptions from Michael Vick. Look for BenJarvis Green-Ellis to put up great rushing stats in Week 2 and A.J. Green to light up the Browns down the field.
Oakland Raiders at Miami Dolphins
Winner: Oakland Raiders
The Chargers did win against the Raiders in Oakland on Monday night, but the Raiders didn't look all that bad. The Dolphins, on the other hand, looked pretty terrible against the Texans. Tannehill finished the day with no touchdowns on three interceptions, falling just short of a 40 quarterback rating. Oakland will need Darren McFadden to step up in Week 2 to keep fans hopes alive.
Kansas City Chiefs at Buffalo Bills
Winner: Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs let the Falcons put up 40 points on them in Week 1. Why do I pick them to win in Week 2? Buffalo allowed the mess that is the Jets offense to put up 48 points on Sunday, with three touchdowns from the one and only Mark Sanchez. Buffalo saw Fred Jackson go down for at least three weeks, and while C.J. Spiller put up good numbers in his place, he isn't a full replacement for Jackson's production. This game, however, will probably be a bit closer than each of their match-ups in Week 1.
Baltimore Ravens at Philadelphia Eagles
Winner: Baltimore Ravens
Vick threw four interceptions against the Browns, the worst team in the NFL. What is he going to do against the famously great Baltimore defense? Not to mention that Joe Flacco and Ray Rice looked spectacular against the Bengals on Monday night. The Eagles should put up about the same amount of points in Week 2 against a more difficult defense, which won't be enough to keep a win from the Ravens.
Minnesota Vikings at Indianapolis Colts
Winner: Indianapolis Colts
The Vikings weren't THAT much better than the Colts in 2011, and have for the most part the same core team. The Colts wanted Luck to start his career off with a win, but a win at home will have to do. Look for Luck to air the ball out and for Reggie Wayne to have another big game. If Collie comes back for Week 2 and if Donald Brown gets a few more targets rather than carries, the Colts should come out with the win. They just have to watch out for that Adrian Peterson guy.
Arizona Cardinals at New England Patriots
Winner: New England Patriots
Yes, most of the football community was shocked that the Cardinals beat the Seahawks, but the Seahawks aren't the New England Patriots. They don't have Brady and his army of receivers, nor a strong rushing performance like Stevan Ridley put together on Sunday versus Tennessee. The Cardinals will not have the Week 2 win against the New England at Foxboro. Period.
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers
Winner: New Orleans Saints
Both of these teams showed their weaknesses in Week 1 losses, but the Saints will get the win this week because they have a stronger team than the Panthers and Drew Brees is an incredible competitor. Look for him to have an amazing performance in Week 2 to silence Saints naysayers and his own personal grips.
Washington Redskins at St. Louis Rams
Winner: Washington Redskins
St. Louis almost pulled out the win against the Detroit Lions in Week 1, losing by less than a touchdown. The Redskins, however, pulled off an amazing win against the Saints and RGIII's performance showed the league that he was worthy of the number two pick. Look for RGIII to throw and run all over the Rams defense and for Pierre Garcon to have another strong performance as RGIII's main man.
Dallas Cowboys at Seattle Seahawks
Winner: Dallas Cowboys
If the Cowboys can take down the reigning Super Bowl champs, then why not the Seattle Seahawks? The Seahawks lost to the CARDINALS. Tony Romo looked sharp in Week 1 and with Austin and Bryant having another week to heal up, look for another strong performance from Romo in Week 2.
Tennessee Titans at San Diego Chargers
Winner: San Diego Chargers
The Titans did not put up a good show at home versus the Patriots. San Diego did put up a good show against the Raiders in Oakland. We also saw the Philip Rivers we were accustomed to before the 2011 season. Rivers is again going to be throwing the ball deep in Week 2, while Jake Locker and the Titans fall short on the road.
New York Jets at Pittsburgh Steelers
Winner: Pittsburgh Steelers
The Jets are not going to put up the same performance this week that they did on Sunday. There is no chance, and they are playing a better team than the Buffalo Bills. Mike Wallace had Week 1 to get the rust off, and it will be fun to watch the Mike Wallace-Antonio Brown tandem this week. Mark Sanchez probably had his best performance for the season in Week 1, so expect a toned down version against the tough Steelers defense in Week 2.
Detroit Lions at San Francisco 49ers
Winner: San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers showed that they deserved to be in the NFC Championship game last season by starting the 2012 season with a big win against the Green Bay Packers. Alex Smith looked sharp, and Randy Moss looks to be a serious red-zone threat for Smith this season. The Lions didn't look bad in Week 1, but Matthew Stafford did throw three picks and the team couldn't break 100 rushing yards on the day. They are facing a more challenging defense in San Francisco, so look for the Lions to fall short in Week 2.
Denver Broncos at Atlanta Falcons
Winner: Denver Broncos
Consider this my big upset pick of the week. Both of these teams looked great in Week 1, and both of these team's quarterbacks were on the money. Why the Broncos winning in Atlanta? Peyton Manning is riding high from his performance in his first game since the 2010 season, and this energy will carry over into Week 2. Eric Decker will play a bigger role as Manning throws for more than 300 yards against the Falcons.
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