Taking an Exclusive Look at Week 1 NFL 2013
Are you ready for some football? I am! But then again, I’m always ready for football. Because I’m so excited for the start of the 2013 NFL season, I decided to write a game-by-game analysis of week 1 (with predictions). Here’s what I’m looking forward to in week 1…
Baltimore at Denver
The Super Bowl champions begin their title defense against the Peyton Manning-led Denver Broncos. Denver looks to have an explosive offense and Baltimore has a declining defense. Look for new addition Wes Welker to make an immediate impact on the Broncos offense. Denver 34 Baltimore 23.
New England at Buffalo
It will be interesting to see how the Aaron Hernandez saga plays out. Regardless, New England’s offense is on the decline with the loss of Welker and Hernandez. And who knows how healthy and effective Rob Gronkowski will be. This is a spot for Buffalo to pull an upset, but I still think the Pats squeak out a win. New England 20 Buffalo 17.
Cincinnati at Chicago
No more Lovie Smith or Brian Urlacher in Chicago. A new era for the Bears begins with a loss at home. Andy Dalton is never going to be a star quarterback, but he’s effective and will challenge the Bears defense. Cincinnati 27 Chicago 17.
Miami at Cleveland
Miami is on the rise, Cleveland isn’t. The Browns will struggle to score points agains the Dolphins improved defense. Look for a big game out of Ryan Tannehill against the Cleveland defense. Miami 27 Cleveland 10.
Minnesota at Detroit
This is one of the more intriguing opening week match-ups. Detroit had a disappointing season last year but has a lot of talent. Minnesota had a surprising season. I think Reggie Bush’s impact on the Lions offense will be higher than most expect. And I think Detroit will make an opening game statement against an in-division rival. Detroit 31 Minnesota 21.
Oakland at Indianapolis
Andrew Luck had a solid rookie season and the Colts were the surprise of the NFL last year. I don’t expect Indianapolis to match their success of 2012, but the Raiders are bad. Real bad. The game is in Indy, so I give the Colts a huge edge in this one. Indianapolis 23 Oakland 13.
Atlanta at New Orleans
Two of the finest quarterbacks duke it out here (Drew Brees versus Matt Ryan). If not for a second half chokejob in the NFC Championship Game, Atlanta would have been in the Super Bowl. They’ll be on a mission this year to win it all. That’s their only goal. Anything less will be a disappointment. New Orleans is looking to get back to form after a disappointing 2012. High scoring game ends with an OT score by the Saints. New Orleans 37 Atlanta 34.
Tampa Bay at New York Jets
This will be a low scoring game. The Jets have a good defense but can’t score points. If Mark Sanchez remains the quarterback heading into week 1, Tampa Bay will likely win this game on turnovers “forced”. Tampa Bay 17 New York 13.
Tennessee at Pittsburgh
Regardless of how well Chris Johnson performs, Tennessee is going to have a long season. Pittsburgh still has some talent despite a disappointing 2012. With the game being played in The Burgh, I look for Big Ben to dominate Tennessee’s soft defense. Pittsburgh 28 Tennessee 6.
Seattle at Carolina
This is a difficult game to predict because I’m not sure what to expect from Cam Newton this year. If the Cam Newton of 2011 shows up, Carolina wins. If the Cam Newton of 2012 shows up, Seattle wins with defense. Not to cop out on this, but I can’t come up with a score prediction without knowing what to expect from Newton.
Kansas City at Jacksonville
One thing is certain…bad football will be played in this game. I do think the Chiefs will be improved even though Alex Smith isn’t a great QB. But he is an upgrade over Matt Cassel. But then again, so am I. Kansas City wins behind a big game out of Jamaal Charles. Not that this game even matters. Kansas City 21 Jacksonville 13.
Arizona at St. Louis
Arizona has some new key pieces, including QB Carson Palmer and RB Rashard Mendenhall. I like St. Louis in this one because of the new-ness of the Cardinals offense. I expect Sam Bradford to have a breakout year and this is the game that will get him going. St. Louis 24 Arizona 17.
Green Bay at San Francisco
This is the game of the week, perhaps the game of the year. Green Bay was inconsistent last year but I expect them to get back to form. San Francisco has a great defense, but I give Green Bay the edge simply because of home field advantage. Green Bay 23 San Francisco 17.
New York Giants at Dallas
Eli Manning had a disappointing 2012. That won’t happen again. Manning has always performed better in road games and I expect that trend to continue in Week 1. Tony Romo will get his yards but make a costly mistake in the 4th quarter (what else is new?). New York 34 Dallas 27.
Philadelphia at Washington
RGIII is expected to be ready for this. I’m still not convinced he will be as effective because of his knee as most believe. I wouldn’t be surprised if he has a down year. Philly will go into FedEx field and get an important Week 1 victory over their hated rivals. Philadelphia 20 Washington 16.
Houston at San Diego
Despite a disappointing end to 2012, Houston is on the rise. They have nearly everything in place to win it all. San Diego, on the other hand, is headed backwards. The Matt Schaub to Andre Johnson combination surpasses 120 yards and Houston dominates this football game. Houston 35 San Diego 14.