And that’s how you start an NFL season! All the bumbling and stumbling the Buccaneers did (looking at you Chris Godwin) to make things interesting was just to torture anyone who took Tampa Bay against the spread. Here’s a tip: take the Bucs straight up every week and you’ll win a lot. That’s betting on Tom Brady. Mess with the points and you’re at the mercy of his band of merry idiots.
As for Dallas, they looked pretty good actually. But calm down with the Dak Prescott outplayed Brady already. None of the interceptions were bad throws from either of them. They both played great, but who got the W? Hint: it wasn’t the 28-year-old. Also, Dak isn’t a real name, he’s just a character from The Empire Strikes Back. And this was pretty much how Dak Prescott against Tom Brady played out:
Daks are a confident bunch. You gotta give them that much.
Let’s move on to the upcoming games, shall we? You know, the ones you still have time to second guess. Or third guess in your case.
JAGUARS (-3) AT TEXANS
For me, this game comes down to Trevor Lawrence vs Tyrod Taylor. Lawrence will take his lumps in the NFL, but not from Tyrod Taylor. Or the dysfunctional Texans. Sure, the Jags stink too, but Lawrence is a winner. Which means he doesn’t like losing. Besides, I still remember when coach “Loudmouth” Rex Ryan named Taylor the starting QB for Buffalo. He hasn’t coached since. Where’s the tiny violin emoji?
Plus there’s always a chance Lawrence is somehow related to Johnny Lawrence from Karate Kid (still kicking ass in Cobra Kai on Netflix I might add).
STEELERS (+6.5) AT BILLS
I like the Bills to win but the Steelers to cover. Buffalo seems slightly overrated and Pittsburgh slightly under. TJ Watt got sick of his agent’s haggling for more money ON TOP of the mega-deal he was offered, so he marched into Rooney’s office and said he’d take the deal as is. Then he immediately left to go work out. That gives me serious Clubber Lang vibes (to be clear I mean when Clubber first beat the snot out of Rocky, not later when he got his cocky ass handed back to him).
I mean THIS Clubber:
CARDINALS (+3) AT TITANS
The Titans think they’re contenders this year. They’re not. Both these teams tend to disappoint. Remember the old days when Jake Plummer was the Arizona QB and he had to go door to door to try getting fans to root for the team? That actually happened, Google it.
These teams have eerie similarities. Like how they both made one Super Bowl appearance and lost in heartbreaking fashion. The Cards lost that brutal one to the Steelers on that sick Santonio Holmes catch at the end, while the Titans literally fell one yard short to Kurt Warner’s Rams. Good times!
I’d stay away from both teams. But since you won’t, go with Tennessee and give the points.
CHARGERS (+1) AT FOOTBALL TEAM
I love that Washington is going on season two of being known only as Football Team. I’m secretly hoping they stick with it permanently. In related news, apparently, I’m not good at keeping things secret.
This is a sneaky good game. And the spread is perfect since no team is ever more likely to lose by one point than the Chargers. I’m torn between thinking L.A. will start the season hot before falling apart in agonizing ways, or simply lose out of the gate in agonizing ways. Could really go either way. The Chargers are the schlimazels of the NFL. (I’ll save you the time: schlimazel n. unlucky person; the constant butt of idiotic or unfortunate happenings..)
On the other hand, my lasting memory of Washington is Chase Young this offseason mouthing off about how he “wanted Brady” in the playoffs. Cut to him at the end of the game asking Brady to sign his jersey as he heads home for the summer.
I’d go Chargers here. But only because Justin Herbert had to go through life with the last name Herbert.
VIKINGS (-3) AT BENGALS
Ah, the battle of two teams that can’t be trusted. In general, Minnesota is better, so maybe we shouldn’t overthink it. But they were also better than Atlanta in the NFC Championship game in 1999 and how’d that work out? Hint: the Vikes got to watch the Super Bowl on TV.
I actually remember when Cincinnati went to a couple of Super Bowls in the 80s. But they insisted on losing. Who does that remind me of? Oh yeah, the Vikings in the 70s. They actually went to four. Too bad we didn’t give participation trophies back then. These two teams would finally have some hardware.
I like Cincy here. Joe Burrow hasn’t been there long enough to rue all his life choices yet.
49ERS (-7.5) AT LIONS
What would the spread have to be to make me go with the Lions? More than this. Since when are the Lions a “keep it close” kind of team against good teams? Within one score? Um, no. But they’re at home! And they only went 0-16 ONCE! Sure, sure, you can come up with all kinds of reasons to go the other way (I mean, I can’t, but YOU can). Still no.
Poor Jared Goff. He was in a Super Bowl not long ago you know. Put up 3 points.
That’s how you end up in Detroit.
The only GOOD way to end up in Detroit is to be Axel Foley at the end of Beverly Hills Cop. And even he was happier in Beverly Hills. That’s why he kept going back.
EAGLES (+3.5) AT FALCONS
This one is for the birds (see what I did there?). Both these teams are a mess. I’m not sure Atlanta will ever recover from the 28-3 thing Tom Brady did to them. I mean, like ever. Did you hear how they were celebrating at halftime? It’s like watching contestants go crazy on Press Your Luck when they “win” anything, and then this happens:
It ain’t over till it’s over. The Falcons got whammied, and they deserved it.
Meanwhile, the Eagles recently WON a Super Bowl. But somehow it doesn’t seem so recent anymore, does it?
I’d go Falcons here. But if they get ahead early and you see them happy about it, you’ve already lost.
SEAHAWKS (-3) AT COLTS
These are actually decent teams, they just have issues. Like the characters on any CW show. Or any of us who have lived through 2020 and 2021.
I live by the motto “Never Trust Pete Carroll”. And this was long before that terrific play call against the Patriots in the Super Bowl. It actually goes back to when he was the coach of those very same Patriots. Well, before Tom Brady, so not quite the same. He took a Pats team that had just gone to a Super Bowl and made them worse and worse until he was fired and replaced by Bill Belichick. Maybe it’s just me, but things seemed to get a lot better for New England when that happened.
Yeah, Pete won a Super Bowl with Seattle when he had a dominant team. And then what happened? The Malcolm Butler pick was no accident, no fluke. One team was prepared and one wasn’t.
But the Colts are a mess right now and Russell Wilson is still really good. Go with the Hawks.
JETS (+4) AT PANTHERS
There’s a good chance this will be the best game of the season for whoever wins. And this could be that game where Jets fans get all excited that things are turning around only to find out they are sadly mistaken the following week.
But I don’t see it. I think this ends up being that game for Carolina fans. Besides, what’s more Jets than Sam Darnold going to another team and beating the Jets?
On the plus side for the New York, this Zach Wilson kid seems legit. But who else has a feeling Mac Jones is gonna be better? (I mean, besides Jet fans. And Zach’s mom. I didn’t write that last part. Honestly. It was Candyman.)
PACKERS (-3.5) AT SAINTS
And I use the term AT Saints loosely. Poor New Orleans. This could have and should have been a much better game, but the Saints are snakebit right now.
Didn’t Aaron Rodgers demand a trade and vow never to play for Green Bay again or something? Or was that just part of the fever dream we’ve all been having for the last eighteen months where Aaron Rodgers was the host of Jeopardy? As if.
You can’t really blame Rodgers. He could’ve just said “You know what, I’ve had enough” like Drew Brees did after what Tom Brady did to both of them last season.
DOLPHINS (+3) AT PATRIOTS
This one should be fun. The Dolphins seem like a team on the rise and I’m tempted to go with them here, especially with no Stephon Gilmore for New England. But here’s the thing, I have this nagging feeling that Belichick REALLY wants to win games this year.
He saw what Brady did in Tampa Bay (oh, and Tom comes to visit Foxboro in a few weeks I might add). He’s starting a ROOKIE QB in Mac Jones, which isn’t like him. He spent big in the offseason to upgrade the roster, which isn’t like him. And he’s even started showing up in fast food commercials, which isn’t like him.
Bellichick also cut Cam Newton. Which IS like him.
He’s gonna want to get Mac Jones off on the right foot. I like the Pats here.
BRONCOS (-3) AT GIANTS
Even when the Broncos are bad they’re still pretty good. Just one of those scrappy teams that always find a way to be competitive. I hate them for that.
The Giants are the streakiest bad team of all time (see: two Super Bowl wins over the Pats that feel like the only games they’ve won in the last twenty years). Really, other than when they square off against the Pats, I wouldn’t trust NY to beat anybody.
Fun fact: these two teams once faced each other in a Super Bowl. Denver used to be one of those teams that only showed up to the Super Bowl to be embarrassed. The 80s were fun.
I like the Broncos. And by like I mean I hate them. But they’re gonna win this game.
BROWNS (+6) AT CHIEFS
They win a playoff game and everyone forgets they are still the Browns. By the way that win last year over Pittsburgh. They had to go up by like 30 points and then keep scoring the whole game just to hang on. They almost blew it. Even THEY seemed to realize it was a mistake to be winning. So what are the odds Cleveland keeps getting better? Hmmm.
Will the Chiefs beat them IN Kansas City by a touchdown? A single touchdown? Or more? YES. Do you know how pissed Patrick Mahomes must be? He made the single greatest throw in the history of the game in this last Super Bowl, and it bounced off the receiver’s FACE. Mahomes was SIDEWAYS when he threw it! It went between FOUR DEFENDERS! And it still MATTERED at that point in the game!
YouTube won’t let me show the clip because even Google is scared of the NFL. But you remember. Mahomes remembers. Pepperidge Farm remembers.
The Chiefs will eviscerate the Browns.
BEARS (+7.5) AT RAMS
Da Bears. ONE Super Bowl win in 1985 and they act as they should still be respected for it. To be fair, they destroyed the Patriots (who seem to have been involved in almost every Super Bowl at this point), but come on, they are perennial pretenders. It’s karma really. This is what they did after winning that one Super Bowl:
That really happened. And we all let it happen. So shame on us, America.
Actually, it’s finally starting to grow on me. Go Bears!
The Rams are good. 7.5 is high, but still, Rams. You know the Rams were in a Super Bowl recently. They put up 3 points. But that guy got shipped to Detroit. Now the Rams have a QB who played for… Detroit. Uh oh.
Matthew Stafford will look a lot better with the Rams. You’ll see. Or my name’s not William “The Refrigerator” Perry.
RAVENS (-4) AT RAIDERS
You know it’s bad when so many guys get hurt in practice that you actually quit the practice. The Ravens just tapped out the other day. Okay, practice, you win. Then again, do the Ravens even need running backs? Isn’t that like Lamar Jackson’s whole thing? Not that they only lost running backs. In fact, I’m not sure there’s anyone left BUT Lamar Jackson.
Still, that’s good enough to beat the Raiders.
The Las Vegas Raiders, mind you. Poor Oakland. First, the Warriors moved over to San Fran, and now this. At least they still have the A’s. For now.
As for the Raiders. Put it this way: the Ravens are being held together with duct tape, and they’re STILL favored. IN Vegas. BY Vegas. So there you go.
And that’ll take us through week one! Football is back!
As always, thanks for playing!