NFL: 7 Teams Whose Stock You Should Sell Immediately
Several NFL teams failed to live up to preseason expectations in their first game of the season and look like they could be disappointments all season long.
There are still 16 weeks remaining in the season, but that doesn't mean there aren't conclusions to be drawn from the Week 1 contests.
While championships are not won in September, these early season games can give a good indication of who came into the season prepared to play and who did not.
Whether these teams underperformed due to injury, hype or poor execution doesn't matter, because they simply are not as good as we thought they were.
That much was obvious already entering Week 1, but the beatdown the Colts received from their division rival the Houston Texans made it even more apparent.
The Colts were thoroughly manhandled in every aspect of the game, and the only reason it wasn't an even bigger blow out is because Matt Schaub threw two interceptions.
Indianapolis' suspect run defense allowed Houston backup Ben Tate to run for 114 yards and a score, while also allowing one to Derrick Ward. This after Indy was gashed in Week 1 last season by then-unknown Arian Foster for 231 yards.
The offense, however, was even worse than the defense as the Colts ran for just 64 yards and quarterback Kerry Collins had a completion percentage just above 50 percent and lost two fumbles.
Houston's offense capitalized on both Collins' fumbles for touchdowns, and they never looked back in their drubbing of the Colts.
If Peyton Manning misses more than a few weeks, this could be one of the worst teams in the league this season.
Last season's breakout star, running back Peyton Hillis ran for just 57 yards on 17 carries and while he caught six passes, those catches netted him only 30 total yards.
Second year quarterback Colt McCoy struggled to find a rhythm as well, as he completed only 19 of his 40 pass attempts for 213 yards and was intercepted once.
The Browns defense allowed rookie quarterback Andy Dalton to lead three scoring drives in the first half, and then surrendered the lead to backup Bruce Gradkowski in the fourth quarter.
They also let Cedric Benson run wild to the tune of 121 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries just eight days after he was released from jail.
The Browns were a trendy sleeper pick to make the postseason, but if they couldn't beat the hapless Bengals in Week 1, a team that many expected to be the worst in the league, they might not be on the right track after all.
After winning the NFC West with a 7-9 record a year ago, the Seattle Seahawks came out in the first week of the 2011-12 season and laid an egg against division rival San Francisco.
Running back Marshawn Lynch totaled just 33 yards on 13 carries and was a non-factor in the passing game.
Free-agent wide receiver pickup Sidney Rice missed the game with injury and no one knows how long he may be out.
The guy who will be throwing him the ball, Tarvaris Jackson, pretty much played like we've come to expect him to. Jackson was his typically erratic self, completing 21 of 37 passes for 197 yards and two touchdowns while also being intercepted. True to form, Jackson also lost two of his three fumbles on the day.
The Seahawks defense didn't fare much better, as they failed to sack 49ers quarterback Alex Smith once all game and allowed him to complete 75 percent of his passes on the day.
Special team is what really killed Seattle, however, as Ted Ginn returned a kickoff and then a punt for touchdowns inside of a minute.
Pete Carroll's squad miraculously made the playoffs last year and pulled off an upset in the first round, but it's shaping up to be an ugly season in the Pacific Northwest.
That prediction didn't really pan out in Week 1 against the Chicago Bears. Atlanta hung just 12 points on the board, none of them by offensive touchdowns.
Michael Turner's 100-yard day doesn't look as good when you realize that 53 of them came on one play and that he should have scored on that run but was caught from behind by a Bears defender.
White himself had a typically solid outing with eight catches, but he totaled only 61 yards on those passing plays, further enforcing the notion that Matt Ryan is a dink and dunk quarterback who doesn't make big plays down the field.
Rookie wideout Julio Jones had a strong debut with five catches for 71 yards and tight end Tony Gonzalez matched him with a five for 72 day. However, none of it mattered as the Falcons couldn't put points on the scoreboard.
Matt Ryan was sacked five times and lost a fumble, and Michael Turner lost one as well. The Bears fumbled three times, but the Falcons could't capitalize by recovering Chicago's miscues.
While the Falcons are still a strong team, those looking for a repeat of last season's 13-3 record and No. 1 seed in the NFC should think again.
St. Louis Rams
The St. Louis Rams could be in very, very big trouble.
With injuries to last year's No. 1 pick, quarterback Sam Bradford, starting running back Stephen Jackson and former Hard Knocks star Danny Amendola, their offense took a giant blow against the Philadelphia Eagles yesterday.
Bradford hit his hand on a defender's helmet while following through on a pass, and while an x-ray showed no break, an injury to your throwing hand is tough to deal with for any quarterback.
Jackson looked like he was off to a great start to the season with a 47-yard touchdown run on St. Louis' first possession of the game, but he would touch the ball only once more all game before leaving with an injured quadriceps.
Amendola's injury was the most gruesome, and certainly the most debilitating for the offense. Bradford's favorite target from a year ago dislocated his elbow and his season is likely in jeopardy. Amendola was quickly becoming a pass-catcher extraordinaire after tallying 85 catches last year and five before leaving the game yesterday.
No. 1 cornerback Ron Bartell also left the game with a stinger in the third quarter and has since been declared out for the remainder of the season.
While the Eagles are one of the best teams in the NFC and St. Louis might have lost to them anyway, the injuries are a crushing blow to the Rams' chances for a deep run this season.
Being that they reside in the NFC West, a playoff berth is still possible, but it's going to be tough if Jackson or Bradford misses any significant amount of time.
Kansas City Chiefs
Considering the Bills have routinely been among the worst teams in football for the last decade or so and won just four games last season, there is cause for concern in Kansas City after Sunday's shellacking.
The Chiefs struggled to move the ball on offense all day long as stud running back Jamaal Charles had just 56 yards on the ground. To put that in perspective, Charles ran for 177 yards on the ground against Buffalo last season.
Erratic quarterback Matt Cassel threw for only 119 yards on 22 completions and looked nothing like the quarterback who formed one of the top quarterback to wide receiver connections in the NFL with Dwayne Bowe last season.
Bowe had only two catches on Sunday against the uninspiring Buffalo secondary. Steve Breaston was the team's leading receiver with 26 yards through the air.
All of that is just icing on the cake however, as it was the defense that was really atrocious for the Chiefs.
They surrendered four passing touchdowns to Ryan Fitzpatrick, two to unheralded tight end Scott Chandler.
C.J. Spiller even got in on the action with a touchdown of his own.
The news got even worse on Monday when star safety Eric Berry was potentially lost for the season with a torn ACL.
The season is quickly spiraling out of control for the Chiefs.
New York Giants
While I don't share that level of pessimism, Sunday's game was certainly an ugly one for the G-Men.
With the immortal Rex Grossman starting at quarterback, the Washington passing attack registered 305 yards through the air, with two touchdowns and no interceptions. It was Grossman's first pick-less game as a starter since 2007.
The Giants' vaunted running game looked very uninspiring, with Ahmad Bradshaw totaling just 44 yards on 13 carries and Brandon Jacobs only chipping in 29 more.
Other than Hakeem Nicks, no one in the New York passing offense really stood out either. In fact, Nicks almost outgained the rest of the team by himself. Nicks had seven catches for 122 yards; the rest of the Giants totaled 11 catches for 146 yards.
The Giants were just one for 10 on third downs on Sunday, which is never a recipe for success.
They also took an uncharacteristic eight penalties. Tom Coughlin's teams are usually among the most disciplined in the league, so it was unusual to see that high of a penalty total.
While the Giants looked unimpressive in a divisional defeat, the Philadelphia Eagles handled business on the road at St. Louis and the Dallas Cowboys snatched defeat from the arms of victory over the Giants' MetLife stadium brethren the New York Jets.
New York looked like the weakest NFC East team on Sunday, and they'll have to get every phase of their football team back in gear to turn it around.