So far, I'm 9-6 for week one. Not even close to the top in the pool at work, but in a 3-way tie for first place in the pool where Lisa works. Joe is one of the others tied for first with me, and we have/had identical picks, other than the total score for the Monday night tie-breaker. I have 41 points, he has 51.
This was our first week with DirecTV's NFL Sunday Ticket and SuperFan Pass. Two channels with 8 games each in small boxes on the screen (game mix), along with scores and stats on the games. Another humpety-hump number of channels with games on. GAMES, GAMES, GAMES! I was in hog heaven yesterday!
EIGHT players ended up the day with a passer rating over 100, with Ben-it-wasn't-a-fluke Roethlisberger leading the pack with an astonishing 158.3 rating. I had to rub my eyes, blink several times, and pinch myself to make sure I wasn't hallucinating seeing Drew Bledsoe in second place with a rating of 143.4 -- how come he couldn't play like that in Buffalo? Arnaz Battle, a wide receiver for the 49ers also is in the top 8 for passer ratings, having thrown two passes, completing both, for 27 yards. Rounding out the top 8 are Rattay, Fiedler, Palmer, Brady and Leftwitch. I think Carson Palmer (CIN) is going to be a fun one to watch this year, as he seems to have some formidable weapons on his offense. Maybe we can say "Cincinnati Bengals" without snickering between the two words this year, eh?
Speaking of snickering, did the Denver Broncos miss the plane or something? What is it about a winless record (they're 0-7) in Miami that they can't seem to get past? Yeah, yeah, sure, both of their starting cornerbacks were injured and one of the rookie replacement cornerbacks was also injured, but there's more to a team than the cornerbacks and, besides, Miami had already handed Denver their hinies well before those injuries took place.
Plummer reminded me of a high-school QB making a debut start. Although, to give the guy SOME credit, he sure had to do a lot of scrambling around because Miami's defense was beating the O-line each and every play. Add to that the fact that the receivers were pretty well covered the entire game or, if they weren't, they seemed to have difficulty CATCHING the ball, and it put Jake the Snake 5th from the bottom in QB ratings. However, it should be noted that he DID pass for 251 yards, finishing 11th overall in passing yards -- so he DID do his job. Did he do it well? I'd have to say, overall, no.
Mike Anderson went out injured almost immediately, and Tatum Bell replaced him. See, the thing is, Anderson is a tough ex-Marine and he's like a plow horse. Bell, while swift and nimble, just doesn't seem to have the strength to hit the hole and advance past it, especially when confronted with a tough run defense like Miami showed yesterday.
David Carr (HOU) finally cut his hair, but maybe he should have left it long for the "good luck," as he finished the day last in QB ratings AND in last place for QB passing yards (for QBs that started).
Speaking of QBs that started or didn't, Josh McCown entered the game for Arizona yesterday. What happened to Kurt Whatshisname? Did you see what this arrogant prick said about Eli Manning? "It was one of those games where, fortunately for him, he wasn't called upon to do a whole lot. They had a lot of big runs and he had a couple of screens that were probably his biggest plays." Yeah? Manning's in his second year, what's your excuse, Warner? Your passer rating was only 10 points higher than this young, inexperienced Eli Manning. What's that expression? Pride goeth before a great fall?
Speaking of Manning -- Peyton Manning and his Colts had one heck of a game against the Ravens last night. Normally, when a game ends the first half at 3-0, you ask yourself "What the heck am I watching this yawner for?" But, that game was far from a yawner. It was an offensive and defensive struggle the whole way through. Excellent offensive plays from both teams, and phenomenal defense from both teams as well. In addition to Manning's brilliance both in and out of the pocket, Boller AND Wright both had excellent games as well. Manning barely fell below a 100 passer rating.
J.P. Losman (BUF) had a pretty decent start yesterday, too, as Buffalo trounced Houston. Must be the long hair -- Carr should avoid the barbershop.
It was great that the Saints (the sentimental favorites) won yesterday. I honestly didn't think that ball was going to go through the uprights when it was kicked in the closing seconds, giving the Saints their win. Perhaps the collective inhale by the Saints fans pulled that ball into the correct position. What an exciting finish it was.
Lisa gently reminded me last night that, while the Raiders lost Thursday night (her team), they were SUPPOSED to lose, unlike Denver. She's damn lucky she's cute.
Denver's next opponent: San Diego at Invesco Field. Brees is a fair quarterback, but the team relies heavily on Ladainian Tomlinson -- Denver DOES have a tough run defense.
Now if only they can shore up the rest of the defense...or at least SHOW up against San Diego.
NFL Sunday Ticket is the BEST!