Real Deal or Week One Steal?

John TylerContributor ISeptember 9, 2008

The first week of the NFL season was loaded with great games and stunning upsets. Week One is a week were the games are almost impossible to predict and any team can win. 

There were five underdogs that were able to pull off wins against “superior teams.” I know it is only one game, and in the grand scheme of things it really does not mean much, but there are a few teams that will be able to repeat their Week One success, and a few of those teams were able to steal a game.

I'll analyze the results to help in understanding which teams are the real deal.


1. Buffalo Bills- After a 34-10 beat down over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, there is no doubt that Buffalo is a team to watch out for in the AFC. Let’s not forget that the Seahawks made the playoffs last season and are expected to be there again this year. 

Last season, the Bills faced a lot of adversity and ended the year with a 7-9 record. I expect the Buffalo Bills to end the season 10-6 and win the AFC East. Yes, you read correctly.

The Bills are the best team in the AFC East that does not have Tom Brady. Before you blast me with comments, just wait until next week when the Buffalo Bills play the Jaguars in Jacksonville.

2. Carolina Panthers- Starring defeat in the face in San Diego on fourth down with two seconds left from the 14-yard line, Jack Delhomme was able to find Dante Rosario in the back of the end zone to win the most exciting game of the week.

The Panthers have been on a roller-coaster ride ever since they came into the league in 1995 finishing 7-9 five times. Following a 7-9 season four out of five times, they have been able to bounce back and win the division, and for the record, they went 7-9 last season.

I am going to go out on a limb and predict a division win for the Carolina Panthers.     

3. Green Bay Packers- The PACK were able to answer their critics on the national stage of MNF. Aaron Rodgers looked impressive, and if it wasn’t for an illegal-man-down-field penalty on the Donald Driver touchdown, he would have looked better than the legend Brett Favre.

The reason that the packers are the real deal, despite being at home, is that a lot of so-called experts have picked the Minnesota Vikings to win the division and possibly represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. This was a great win, and it showed everybody that the Green Bay Packers are still the team to beat in the NFC North.  

Week One Steals


  1. Chicago Bears- This is by far the biggest upset of the week. Nobody had the Bears winning this game on Sunday night in Indianapolis against the Colts. The Bears looked like the Bears of old, running the football, playing excellent defense, and taking advantage of their opponent’s mistakes. Unfortunately for Bear’s fans, they weren’t able to do this when it mattered in the Super Bowl against the Colts. That being said, I still am not a believer in the Bears and don’t see them doing any better than 6-10 this year. You have to think that the Colts are going to bounce back to be a top team in the AFC this season and contend for a Super Bowl title.    

2. Atlanta Falcons- As reluctant as I am to say that the Atlanta Falcons beating the Detroit Lions is a Week One is a steal, I still do not think the Atlanta Falcons will be able to repeat their winning performance more than a couple times throughout the year. Once teams get some film on Matt Ryan, they will be able to game plan for him and will start putting more men in the box to stop Michael Turner and force Ryan to make plays.

3. Tennessee Titans- The Titans were able to beat the Jacksonville Jaguars, despite poor play from Vince Young. Once Kerry Collins came into the game, they were able to spread the field and move the chains by throwing the ball, something they were unable to do for the first three quarters.

Young’s injury may have been a blessing in disguise for the Titans. I feel that the Tennessee Titans can go far as long as Vince Young remains on the sidelines. The longer he is off the field, the better their chances of making the playoffs become.