The NFL season is now officially underway, and we didn’t have to wait long for the surprises to begin. “Any given Sunday” – that hoary old cliche – never seemed so fitting as yesterday’s given Sunday. We had:
~ Perennial “hot pick to elevate their game to Super Bowl contention” Jacksonville losing, at home, to Tennessee. The Jaguars scored a mere 10 points and once again underscored my doubts about their ability to play with the big boys.
~ My own Indianapolis Colts lost their season opener by a double digit margin to the formerly hapless Chicago Bears. En route to the loss: Marvin Harrison fumbled, Peyton Manning was pretty ordinary, several receivers dropped catchable balls, the whole offensive line seemed confused, Dallas Clark missed most of the game with a mysterious and frightening leg injury, and the special teams – well I guess that was the least surprising part, Diane, because the special teams still suck. Woe is me. I think the Colts will work out the kinks – especially if they can get center Saturday back and healthy – but there was a troubling amount of rust on the gears of the previously well-oiled machine.
~ The Patriots barely beat the horrible Chiefs at home, and iron man Tom Brady may be done for the year thanks to a painful-looking knee injury. If I didn’t hate the Patriots and everything associated with them, I’d almost feel bad for Pats fans. I do, however, wish Brady a speedy and full recovery. He’s one of the best quarterbacks in the league – now or ever – and his prolonged absence from the field only hurts the NFL. It may, however, make the season stretch run and playoffs a crapload more interesting this year. You can’t even give the AFC East to the Pats now.
~ The “most talented team in the NFL and perpetual Super Bowl favorite in the AFC” San Diego Chargers lost their opener… again. Last year’s starting run of suck from them was surprising and kind of funny; if they manage to repeat it it will be upgraded to shocking and downright hilarious. Norv likes to lose!
~ Brett Favre appears to actually be helping the Jets. Good god.
~ Buffalo was apparently awesome in creaming the Seattle Seahawks. That game wiped two people out of my NFL Suicide Pool. (And I can’t say I’ll miss ’em.) On a side note, the collected upsets I’ve just been talking about demolished 8 players in the suicide race – slightly over a third of the entrants. At this rate, I only need to make it through week 3 and my victory will be assured.
But unfortunately, the way things have been in the NFL so far, making it through week 3 is going to be pretty damn hard.