NFL Picks Week 2: 3 Week 1 Losers That Will Get in the Win Column

Joseph HealyCorrespondent ISeptember 13, 2011

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 11: Quarterback  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers scrambles while being pressured by defender Arthur Jones #97 of the Baltimore Ravens during second half of the season opener at M&T Bank Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

They say the toughest win of the season to get is your first. In a season opener, both teams are pumped up and each team isn't sure what to expect from the other. That generally leads to an inordinate amount of close games.

Teams that ended up on the wrong end of close games in Week 1 will be looking to get on the board in Week 2. These are three teams that will get that difficult first win in Week 2.


Cleveland Browns

The Browns suffered what might have been the toughest loss of the week against their in-state rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals. Any loss where you were expected to win is tough, but losing to a team in your state that clearly lacks direction hurts even worse.

In Week 2, the gift awaiting them is the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts dropped a 34-7 decision to the Houston Texans in Week 1 and couldn't have looked worse doing it.

Kerry Collins will almost certainly look better with another week of practice under his belt, but he was far from the only problem. If you think there is panic in Indianapolis now after the loss to Houston, imagine what it will be like when they drop this game to Cleveland.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers were likely the slight favorite in their opening game against the Detroit Lions, but it is not a shocker that they lost. The Lions are, after all, a trendy pick to make it to the postseason this year. That doesn't make it any easier to take, though.

In Week 2, the Bucs will get on the board by beating the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings only lost to the Chargers by seven in Week 1, but that's deceiving. Philip Rivers' interceptions kept Minnesota in a game they had no business being in.

The key will be to stop Adrian Peterson. That sounds obvious, but the Vikings got almost nothing from Donovan McNabb last week. When the Bucs force McNabb to go out and win the game for his team, he won't be able to do it.


Pittsburgh Steelers

This pick feels like cheating because the Steelers are among the favorites in the AFC and their Week 2 opponent, the Seattle Seahawks, are coming off a loss to the 49ers.

There is just no chance, and I repeat no chance, that the Steelers fall to 0-2. I would have picked the Steelers to win no matter who they were set to play. 

This game will be ugly and it will get that way quickly. The Steelers are going to play fast and angry on the way to notching their first win of the season.