Pocket Doppler Prognosticators: Week 2
Last year, each Friday the 3 Founding Fathers of Pocket Doppler (yours truly, BigSnakeMan & Chris Richards) would square off in picking the winner of the Packers, Sunday night & MNF games in an attempt to prove their football acumen and entertain. We’re not sure either of those things happened. So this year, the Founding Fathers will be joined by two Pocket Doppler veterans: favored stepson Rich & Senior Angel Colleen. Like last year, we’ll keep a running tally throughout the season.
Welcome to this week’s edition of the Pocket Doppler Prognosticators. Entering into Week 2 the current standings are:
We open the season with a 5-way tie after all of us take the safe bets. Will this week shake things up? Only one way to find out so here are the picks.
If we learned anything during Week 1 of the 2011 NFL season, it was to expect the unexpected. We also learned that there figure to be a lot of bad teams around the league this year. Judging by the scores throughout the league, offenses are apparently ahead of defenses in the early go. All those much ballyhooed informal “lockout workouts” must have been more beneficial to the offenders than the defenders.
Packers at Panthers – It’s fair to say that Carolina quarterback Cam Newton turned in THE surprise performance in week 1. The Arizona Cardinals stacked the line against Panthers running backs and virtually dared Newton to beat them and he nearly did, passing for over 400 yards in the process. Raise your hand if you saw that one coming; I know I sure didn’t. That being said, don’t expect a repeat this week. Now that actual game film of Newton’s one game NFL career exists, I anticipate that Packers’ defensive coordinator Dom Capers will come up with enough wrinkles to confuse the rookie into making at least a few mistakes. On the other side of the ball, it doesn’t appear that Carolina has enough to slow down the Packers offense, much less stop them. This one may end up being closer than it should be (as Packers’ games too often are), but Green Bay should prevail in the end.
Eagles at Falcons – Prodigal son Michael Vick returns “home” to his Atlanta professional roots as the “Dream Team” travels to the Georgia Dome. Atlanta, Sports Illustrated’s pick to win this year’s (2012) Super Bowl courtesy of Peter King, fell early prey to the SI jinx in being thoroughly embarrassed by the Bears in Chicago last week. Atlanta is getting 2.5 points from Philadelphia (for those of you who take such things into account) and, if anyone can appreciate being a ‘home dog’, it should be Vick. The Eagles, meanwhile, battered and bruised an inferior Rams team into submission last week in St. Louis. Based on the way these respective teams looked in their first outings, there’s no reason to expect the Falcons to win. I suspect that both of these squads are being oversold just a tad, but I’ll take a highly motivated Atlanta team in the minor “upset”.
Rams at Giants – St. Louis suffered so many injuries in their home loss against Philly, their equipment manager was probably fitting himself for a uniform. Among the wounded were starting quarterback Sam Bradford and first string tailback Steven Jackson. Those two are among the few good players that the Rams have. As of ths writing, it was a good possibility that Jackson would miss this game, taking a backseat to former Tampa RB Cadillac Williams. For their part, the Giants were pretty underwhelming in losing to Washington last week and might actually be the worst team in their own division. Still, even a healthy St. Louis team would be hard pressed to come out of New York with a victory. I look for the Giants to tower over the Rams.
BSM’s Picks: Packers, Falcons & Giants
Packers at Panthers – Last week’s big surprise was the play of the Panthers’ Rookie QB Cam Newton. I think this weekend Cam may be in for a rude awakening of sorts as the Packers’ D is just a bit more stout than the Cardinal’s unit. Overall, while the Panther’s were pretty solid against Arizona they’re still the Panthers so I fully expect a ‘Welcome to the NFL’ game for Cam Newton and a Packers win by at least two touchdowns.
Eagles at Falcons – The Eagles started their season off with an impressive performance, the Falcons not so much. While the Falcons get to be at home for this game, after what I saw last weekend against the Bears, I don’t see Atlanta being able to beat the Eagles. That and the better Vick plays, the more points I get for my Fantasy Team.
Rams at Giants- Hmmm, this game has all the hallmarks of a great…boring mess. There isn’t a thing about either of these teams that even remotely excites me, but I suppose I have to pick someone to win here. So…ummm…Rams beat the Giants 6-2…yep, 2 field goals and a safety.
Wally’s Picks: Packers,
Eagles Rams & Giants
Packers at Panthers – I have a hard time believing that Cam Newton is going to light it up for 400+ passing yards v. GB like he did last week against AZ. Even with Newton’s performance, CAR still lost, giving up 28 to the Cards. I think GB is better than Arizona, and if that team can handle the Panthers, I don’t expect the Pack to stumble even with the game in Charlotte.
Eagles at Falcons – Certainly, talons will be displayed whenever birds of prey clash, particularly when both avians are expected to be NFC contenders. But the Eagles rolled up the Rams last week while the Falcons got rolled over by the Bears. That makes me wonder if CHI is that good or if ATL is overrated. It will be interesting to see how the Falcons deal with PHL’s running attack, which — thanks to Michael Vick — is leading the league in rushing after one game. I think the Falcons are better than they showed in CHI, but I like Philly to win on the road anyway.
Rams at Giants – There was some mild hype about STL coming into the season, but they didn’t hold up very well v. PHL in the opener. Now they travel to Jersey to face the G-Men, another Week One loser. Moreover, the Rams are expected to be without Stephen Jackson, so I expect NY to head-butt STL.
Chris’s Picks: Packers, Eagles & Giants
Packers at Panthers – This one shouldn’t scare me, but it does. Over the last two seasons (or maybe even longer) the Packers have had a terrible tendency to play down to teams inferior to them. It doesn’t matter how respectfully they talk about their opponents, how much McCarthy yells, how few injuries the Packers have or whether the game is in Lambeau or away, the team has let down pretty consistently.
The Panthers, even with Cam Newton, are not that good in my opinion. Therefore, they have a chance to surprise the Packers.
Not much of one, though. Here kitty, kitty, kitty! Packers win.
Eagles at Falcons – I would have thought this was going to be a fantastic matchup until the Bears opened a can of ass whoop on the Falcons last week. Matty Ice looked like Matty Ice Melt. That said, Atlanta is going to be pissed as they are very embarrassed from that loss, plus they are at home, hosting a totally overhyped bunch known as the “Dream Team.” If Atlanta looks good this week, the good news is is the Eagles are probably really, really bad. Still, I pick the Eagles to win.
Rams at Giants – Oy. The Rams weren’t looking to be that good coming out of the gate, and after last week they have several players out or questionable due to injuries. Al Harris is one of their only healthy CBs. And that should scare you, Rams fans, considering his injury issues of late. The Giants aren’t great (the Redskins? Really?), but they do have the new hope for knocking Brett Favre out of the record books, aka Eli “I’m an elite quarterback” Manning. No, you’re not, Eli, not even close, but the Giants will beat the Rams. Hell, anyone can beat the Rams.
Colleen’s Picks: Packers, Eagles & Giants
Packers at Panthers – I’m still bitter Green Bay reached for something named Ahmad Raheem Carrol — who currently laces ‘em up for the UFL’s Virginia Destroyers — over cornerback Chris Gamble in the 2004 NFL Draft. While Gamble isn’t exactly an all-pro, he’s still on the team who drafted him, contributing, standing taller than 5′ 6”, and can see past the chest of the WR across from him (i.e. He can cover). And Carrol? Well, we all know what happened there. That may be utterly irrelevant when it comes to determining a winner, but it factors (majorly) into my decision…That, and how terrible Reggie White looked in a Panthers uniform. Carolina’s defense — sans probowl linebacker Jon Beason for the rest of the season — is no match for the Green Bay offense, the Green Bay defense will fluster and frustrate Cam Newton back to reality, and despite Slocum, the Green and Gold coaching staff is simply better equipped with talent and more adept to winning (duh, champs) than those stationed on the East Coast. Green Bay by K.O. in the 3rd quarter.
Eagles at Falcons – If Green Bay wouldn’t have quelled the uprising of dangerous speed, youth, and talent in Philadelphia during the 2010 playoffs, the Eagles would have gone on to represent the NFC in the Superbowl. Philly isn’t only the fastest team in the NFL, but they have upgraded — mightily — their defense during the offseason as well. They are a legitimate title contenders. The Eagles storm into Atlanta, who had all of 2 losses in 2010, and place the Falcons in an 0-2 hole.
Rams at Giants – Neither team lived up to expectations in week one. Neither team is as good as their fan bases think (wish) their teams were. And both teams have suffered their share of potentially significant injuries as well (Hakeem Nicks, Steven Jackson, etc). I had planned to pick the Giants all week to win this game, but I don’t trust Eli Manning. He’s Romo-esque. And the orc Tom Coughlin — boasting sub zero, wind-chaffed cheeks and an always squinty-eyed scowl — irks me to no end. Too far? Lance Kendricks hauls in a touchdown (securing a win for my team, GymTanFantasy), and St. Louis caps a 3-0 sweep for this week’s PDP road teams.
Rich’s Picks: Packers, Falcons & Rams