NFL Week 5: The Extraordinary Guide to This Week's Games and Other Things
This has been a great year in the NFL so far.
That is, of course, if your favorite team isn't a lethargic shell of its previous self, you aren't getting slaughtered in your picks against the spread and you don't spend the majority of your nights crying hysterically.
Hopefully, Week 5 will be an improvement, but that is an odd thing to say especially since the quality of the games this year have been unnaturally good. This is more about the healing of the soul. I need a few things to go right for me this weekend in the NFL.
In hopes of lightening up the mood, not only in my heart but in the "Oh man, Walter Payton did drugs" depressed beings, I have decided to bring back the "Extraordinary Guide to NFL Week X" column. The main factor in its return is the fact that there are only 13 games this week, and not the usual 16 that have my fingers on the verge of becoming rheumatoid at the end of writing this.
Here it is, and may your week 5 be less enjoyable then mine:
Games Affecting America: New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers
One noticeable league-wide trend this year has been a dearth of better-than-average pass defenses. Perhaps that is due to the rules favoring wide receivers, the fact that quarterbacks cannot have their perimeter breached, or the fact that the ball is juiced. Both the Saints and Panthers have proven they will not stop the pass so far, and the two quarterbacks are both on a trajectory for over 5,000 yards this season. This game will likely have Monte Kiffin in tears. Uncontrollable tears.
Cam Newton's Dick Move of the Week! (From Peter King's Weekend Pickoff)—"Loved what Newton said the other day when a reporter asked him if he was surprised with how well he's made the transition from college to pro quarterback. To which Newton replied, "If you write a good article, do you surprise yourself?""
Hey Peter, I also love when an arrogant jackass mocks a peer. Nothing makes me happier!
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Indianapolis Colts
The combined record of the teams in this game is 1-7, something that will definitely be reflected in what is portrayed on the field. You want to see Curtis Painter sob on the sideline? Matt Cassel beg for a release at halftime? Reggie Wayne sulk? Todd Haley yell at everything and anything? You're in the right place!
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Buffalo Bills
I am actually really intrigued and enticed by the possibilities of this game. I love what the Bills are doing, as I am a sucker for underdog stories (just as long as they don't become cocky, at which point I begin wishing and praying for a sudden downfall).
I love what the Eagles are doing, a team with a high payroll and arrogant ambitions falling in their own excrement. If the Eagles lose, Philadelphia will explode (especially after the Phillies loss in the NLDS yesterday).
If Buffalo wins, it is just another chapter in the imminent book about the "Miracle Bills of 2K11!", written by Richard Deitsch.
Seattle Seahawks vs. New York Giants
Every Sunday, I go to my friend Alec's house, and we watch whatever game is on TV. Since we live in the New York metro area, the Giants are always on. I can't stress this enough. Sometimes, I think they play both the 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. games. Anyway, we are always so surprised by the Giants' quality of play, given how porous and unappealing they look on paper.
They look even worse on the field, and somehow they are 3-1. I don't think I've ever seen a quarterback as awkward, physically and emotionally, as Eli Manning, yet he somehow continuously gets something resembling the job done.
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Bengals have the best defense in the NFL, primarily because of the Browns, Broncos, 49ers, and Bills so far. All those teams have played better than expected so far this year (excluding the Broncos, who have somehow played worse), but none of them (except maybe the Bills) have formidable offenses.
This streak of defensive "dominance" will continue this week against the Jaguars, who are really just horribly sad at this point. Can the people of America release Maurice Jones-Drew from his cruel captivity?
Tennessee Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
This game will decide whether I throw my laptop out my window or not! Won't you watch?
Oakland Raiders vs. Houston Texans
The Houston Texans are 3-1, but after watching them last Sunday, I can't help but think this team is just like all of its 8-8 predecessors with failed expectations. They make a ridiculous number of moronic mistakes and appear disinterested at times.
That said, their division is horrible and they likely can be in the playoffs just by virtue of not being a total disaster. But once the playoffs begin, the Texans' weaknesses will be exposed, once and for all!
Arizona Cardinals vs. Minnesota Vikings
I actually think Minnesota can win this game, but who cares amiright?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. San Francisco 49ers
I have trouble analyzing this game (as well as every other game, in case you haven't noticed), mainly because both teams are 3-1, despite not being anything more than okay. I don't get the NFL this year, I really don't.
Can I live in a world where Alex Smith is an above .500 starter? Can I?
I thought, after the Week 1 disaster, that the Buccaneers would be the 2010 flukes. They haven't been. Ugh. Consult someone who knows what they are talking about.
New York Jets vs. New England Patriots
NFL SUPER-FUN GAME LOCK OF THE WEEK SPONSORED BY FREEDOM.
The freedom lock game this week contains the Patriots again, in a game that will surely contain a few scuffles and Phil Simms clutching his rosaries.
The Jets could be 2-3 after this game, something that would make me and America amazingly happy.
San Diego Chargers vs. Denver Broncos
Green Bay Packers vs. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons have been disappointing this season, something I find to be deserving after their cocky and irrational move up in the draft to draft Julio Jones. As the Falcons learn that Jones' hands are coated in a fine lather of substitution butter, the Packers widen their gap as the heads of the NFC.
Let that be a lesson to you, Atlanta—attempting to improve your team in unnecessary ways never works out.
Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions
I hope Detroit wins this game. Don't we all?
What To Read Sunday Morning
Zach Baron's 14,000 word opus for The Daily, Fear and Self-Loathing in Las Vegas.
It's freaking incredible, the tale of Baron revisiting Hunter S. Thompson's book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas in real life. I hope to finish by 2018.
Fantasy Guy You Should Start
Two weeks ago, I said Antonio Gates, who didn't even play.
So start Cam Newton, who will likely be forced to throw the ball 50+ times when San Diego takes an early 14-0 lead and Ron Rivera presses every panic button he owns.
Team That Will Make Me Upset
The Steelers, when they inevitably lose to the Titans. I don't want them to, but they likely will, as it is just one of those things. Their offensive line, defensive line and linebacker cores are made up of mostly backups and guys who can't play.
Brendan's Eliminator Pick
I'm perfect so far in Zerkle’s suicide thing.
My pick this week—the New York American Football Giants.
Brendan's Picks Against the Spread
I'm 30-34 so far picking games against the spread, meaning I suck.
But I push on! My picks this week.