Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Out On A Limb- 07 NFC South Predictions and Week 3 Recaps
I haven't forgotten about cowboying up and making my predictions for the upcoming NFL season. I've already given you the NFC North and East, today....watch me kill two birds with one stone as I not only recap the NFC South's exhibition escapades of last weekend, but give you my prediction of how they'll finish in 07.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (2-2)
WON at Chiefs 30-7
This team is Clubber Lang to me right now. They look like they have the eye of the tiger. They look like the team running windsprints down the beachfront in hot pants and a headband. Drew Brees completed 17 of 19 passes in this game, and that was without either of his starting wideouts playing (although David Patten filled in admirably with 6 catches for 75 yards and a TD). Reggie Bush carried 6 times for 51 yards. The only thing that wasn't seashells and balloons in this game was that Deuce McAllister had only 14 yards on 6 carries.
I guess any defense would look good when you've got Brodie Croyle doing his Edward Scissorhands routine on the other side of the line of scrimmage, but the Saints first team defense was pretty much impermeable. Will Smith had a sack. Then he punched Croyle in the face and said, "Welcome to Earth".
The Saints play in a division with 3 teams who have serious problems. That, and they are really, really good. The Saints will go 13-3 and have this division wrapped up well before you take the kids to see Santy Claus.
CAROLINA PANTHERS (1-2)
LOST at Patriots 7-24
Carolina has huge problems running the ball, and it was evident here, as DeShaun Foster and D'Angelo Williams combined for just 29 yards on 12 carries. The Cats did have one sweet-ass play though where Jake Delhomme hit Keary Colbert in stride over the middle and he took it about 35 yards after the catch for a TD.
An 18 play, 90 yard drive to a field goal in the 1st quarter was emblematic of the way that New England had its way with Carolina's defense. Tom Brady completed 12 of 15 passes, and the Pats ran 39 plays from scrimmage to Carolina's 19 in the first half. First round LB Jon Beason continues to impress. He led the Panthers with 6 first half tackles.
The schedule maker was pretty gentle with the Panthers, and they should be able to fatten up on Atlanta and Tampa within their own division. You know what a good defense and a bad offense get you though. It gets you 8-8.
ATLANTA FALCONS (2-1)
WON v. Bengals 24-19
I took great offense to the blubbering of the orange Chris Berman during the halftime studio show, referring to Michael Vick's situation as "tragic". Uhhh...if Michael Vick were mauled by a pit bull while walking a little old lady across the street, and was unable to play football again, THAT would be "tragic". That the kingpin of a large and really vile organized crime enterprise is going to jail isn't that tragic to me. Meanwhile, Joey Harrington throws for 2 TDs and posts a 132.8 passer rating in the first half.
First round DE Jamal Anderson had 5 tackles and 2 sacks, so the Falcons gotta be happy with that. They also allowed Rudi Johnson over 5 yards a carry in the first half, and were absolutely abused by Chad Johnson (5 catches, 83 yards, TD in first half), so that kind of puts a damper on things.
There really is no reason the Falcons shouldn't get off to a very good start. The schedule gets a lot tougher toward the end though, and a September and October of Joeymania will give way to an uninspiring 7-9 final record.
TAMPA BAY BUCS (2-1)
Jeff Garcia threw a TD pass to Joey Galloway, but that was one of only 4 completions he had in 10 attempts, and he threw an interception that set up a Dolphin TD. I guess it doesn't really matter how he does though, since the Bucs have like 8 quarterbacks, and can always send the Federales to go get Jake Plummer if things really get bad.
Cato June picked off a miserably executed Trent Green screen pass for an easy six. Gaines Adams looks like he is going to live up to being a top 5 draft pick, he had another sack, his second of the preseason. The Bucs held Miami to only 3.1 yards per carry in the first half.
Jon Gruden gets the ax after a 4-12 season.
Posted by GRRM Jr. at 7:28 AM