Easy Like Sunday Morning is a quick hitting NFL game previews post that looks at the games to be played later in the day where I give you a little insight on each matchup and what I’m watching for. It’s a lighthearted way to blend comedy with America’s true, favorite pastime.
So crack you a cold one, fire up the computer and let me guide your way to the day’s games ahead. Six days a week you may dread, but today I give you football knowledge that’s easy like Sunday morning.
I’ll also give my pick for each game with my “comfort level”. Usually when I give people my picks, they ask me how comfortable should they be with them and I always reply with a real life situation. For instance, if I was to say “riding in a car with Kenny Britt and the cops pull us over,” then I’m not too confident in the pick. But if I tell you that I’m “lying in the hammock with one sock on, wearing boxers and a pair of Blu Blockers,” then it’s a safe bet.
Listen to the NFL RedZone Report for the best blend of Week 9 Fantasy Football and NFL analysis. Also listen to NFL GameDay from 10am-12noon ET for a Fantasy Football breakdown of all the games. I’ll be on with Dr. Roto giving you all the insight you need to get your lineup set for the day’s action.
New York Jets (4-3) @ Buffalo Bills (5-2)
The Jets won two games then lost three, then won two more. What’s the only constant during those streaks? They won at home (4-0) and lost on the road (0-3). I believe the Jets will beat the Bills late in November at home, but that’s a couple weeks away. As far as winning on the road, they’ll have to wait two weeks until they face the Broncos on Thursday night. This game should mimic their first 7 for Buffalo, Fred Jackson all day.
Comfort Level: Being the N-N-Napa Know How guy and walking into a Super Bowl party with a bunch of drunk men that just had to watch that stupid commercial for the 15th time.
Seattle Seahawks (2-5) @ Dallas Cowboys (3-4)
We can’t put too much on the last game the Cowboys played. They caught the Eagles at the worst possible time. Before their last two games where the Cowboys beat the Rams and lost to the Eagles by the same blowout score, 34-7, they hadn’t won or lost a game by more than 4 points. Similar to the same way the Packers played in 2010. They played those close games with banged up receivers and running backs. The Seahawks have a horrible offense and the no-huddle has helped them but it’s not a miracle scheme. Dallas defense took a shot to their pride vs Philly and they’ll attack this offense at home with a chip on their shoulder.
Comfort Level: Every day you wake up and realize that the Maury Show didn’t call to book you as a guest.
Cleveland Browns (3-4) @ Houston Texans (5-3)
Cleveland’s 3 wins have come against teams (Indy, Miami, Seattle) with a combined record of 2-20. They are just a cut above the worst teams in the NFL. What sets them apart from those teams is their top 5 defense. But Houston also comes into this game with a top 5 defense. Who would have predicted those last two sentences after the 2010 season? Unlike Cleveland, Houston has a top 10 offense to compliment their defense and their defense is more well rounded. The Browns have one of the best pass defense but struggle with the run, while the Texans are in the top 6 vs the pass and the run. With Peyton Hillis and Montario Hardesty out, the former Texans’ running back Chris Ogbonnaya will get the start. If he struggles, Colt McCoy hasn’t shown the ability to make things happen on his own. Also, this is Houston’s first chance to ever go 3 games over .500 in their existence.
Comfort Level: Being Lebron James and able to return to Cleveland thanks to Peyton Hillis replacing you as the #1 douche in town that sold out for money. At least Bron was good for more than one year.
Atlanta Falcons (4-3) @ Indianapolis Colts (0-8)
After the bye week, Atlanta has the perfect opportunity to implement their changes and get this team headed in the right direction versus a team that looks as if they have given up on playing their remaining games. A win for the Falcons will put them in a good position as divisional foes Tampa Bay and New Orleans face each other today. Atlanta could head into next week facing New Orleans at home with first place in the division on the line. They need to keep Michael Turner going and figure out how to get Julio Jones and Roddy White both active in the same game.
Comfort Level: Getting a box set of Peyton Manning cast as Marty McFly in the Back to the Future remake.
Miami Dolphins (0-7) @ Kansas City Chiefs (4-3)
Unlike the Colts, the Dolphins still want to win. Also, at the point that I wrote this Brandon Marshall has yet to say something stupid this week, like guaranteeing a win or saying he will be kicked out by the second quarter. The Chiefs have beat some bad teams and had some amazing luck during their four game winning streak. I know Arrowhead is a tough place to play but Miami doesn’t have anything to lose. KC isn’t an elite team and I believe that Miami takes advantage of opportunities and controls the clock.
Pick: (Upset) Dolphins
Comfort Level: Having to implement the new prison fitness and diet campaign by demonstration.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-3) @ New Orleans Saints (5-3)
The Bucs two signature wins this season are against rivals, New Orleans and Atlanta at home. They always get up for those games but now they travel to the Big Easy to face the team they just beat a few weeks ago and that’ coming off an embarrassing loss to the Rams. Neither team has a good defense and while Drew Brees had an off week, Josh Freeman has been having an off year. The Saints need to get Darren Sproles more involved…early and often.
Comfort Level: Walking into your single, guy friends’ house and notice that they’re having a “Twilight” marathon and they own a cat.
Washington Redskins (3-4) @ San Francisco 49ers (6-1)
After Rex Grossman’s 4 interception performance against the Eagles and the switch to John Beck, there hasn’t been many positives of note for the Redskins. The 49ers just keep the game plan week in and week out. There’s no reason to think that the two teams change today. The 49ers will run all day and just ask Alex Smith to make the safe passes he’s been making. Mike Shanahan would be wise to go with the youth at running back and receiver. Ryan Torain is injury prone and Jabar Gaffney isn’t a game changer. Roy Helu is more likely to make things happen and I don’t know what the excuse is on why Leonard Hankerson isn’t playing more than a handful on snaps but his time is now. Finally, go back to Rex Grossman because at least he can win some games.
Comfort Level: Jim Harbaugh game planning to stop John Beck.
Denver Broncos (2-5) @ Oakland Raiders (4-3)
No matter which team is on offense all eyes will be on the quarterbacks in this game. Will Tim Tebow show a little more development this week? Has Hue Jackson been blowing smoke or did Carson Palmer already get caught up to speed? With Darren McFadden out, I know Michael Bush will get the bulk of the carries but I’m excited to watch Taiwan Jones. Honestly I believe that this offense closer resembles the offense that they run with McFadden when Taiwan is in the game. I don’t expect much out of TJ Houshmandzadeh. I could be wrong but why did every other team refuse his services? While this Raiders defense isn’t anything to brag about and Willis McGahee should help Denver’s offense, I need to see Tebow complete some needed throws early before I can believe that Denver is able to knock off a team that is playing for 1st place on the road.
Comfort Level: Urinal talkers
Cincinnati Bengals (5-2) @ Tennessee Titans (4-3)
The Titans keep trying to figure out what’s wrong with Chris Johnson. They say that he will be the primary back again this week and if this is the truth, it’ll be another long game for CJ as he faces the 2nd ranked run defense. Cedric Benson basically got two weeks worth of byes because he served his one game suspension after his bye week. His backup Bernard Scott got a chance to get his legs going last week against the Seahawks and they both should should be a force against Tennessee. The Titans really haven’t done anything of merit after a surprising beating that they gave to the Ravens back in week 2.
Pick: (Upset) Bengals
Comfort Level: Having your friend tell you the “Golden Rule,” it’s okay if it’s in a three way, ”with a honey in the middle there’s some leeway” (never gets old).
St. Louis Rams (1-6) @ Arizona Cardinals (1-6)
This game reminds of the great quarterback matchup of 1994 with John Elway’s Broncos going punch for punch with Joe Montana’s Chiefs….in the sense that they’ll be a football and two guys playing quarterback. How do you pick between the mega matchup that could be AJ Feeley vs John Skelton? Sam Bradford could play but that would only make us miss out on one of the worst games to be watched this season. Arizona won their first game and have lost the last 6. The Rams lost their first 6 and won their last game. What does this have to do with anything? I just can’t see either of these teams having a two game winning streak, even by default.
Comfort Level: Sitting on an airplane with an open seat beside you and right before they close the door one last 350 pound passenger boards and as he waddles down the aisle looking at the numbers on the rows, he makes eye contact with you and you know…
New York Giants (5-2) @ New England Patriots (5-2)
The Giants will be without Ahmad Bradshaw and Hakeem Nicks for this game. Brandon Jacobs has been crying to get more touches and I don’t see him doing anything with them in this game. Eli Manning has been playing well and he will need to keep that trend going if he was to keep this close with New England. The Patriots need to realize that it’s okay to run the ball. When you have a weakness like New England’s pass defense, it’s not always great to score in a hurry. Victor Cruz will step in for Hakeem Nicks and you can expect a big day out of him in this one. Well, you can expect a big day out of all the Giants’ receivers. The Steelers laid the blueprint for beating Tom Brady last week and the Giants have the pass rushers to get the pressure.
Pick: (Upset) Giants
Comfort Level: Looking like the most feminine person in prison and having my mugshot taken and released to the media after crying.
Green Bay Packers (7-0) @ San Diego Chargers (4-3)
The Chargers need this a lot more than the Packers and Green Bay will lose at some point during this season. The Packers can score on anybody and I’m not saying the Chargers will stop that passing attack but they have enough talent to slow it down. Green Bay on the other hand hasn’t shown the ability to stop opposing offenses once they go to the air. I know about all of the injuries for the Chargers. I know about the short week for San Diego and then they have to turn around and play again on Thursday in prime time but I believe that get up for it. Philip Rivers has been questioned a million times this week about that botched snap. This game will be close and Rivers will find a way to win this one.
Pick: (Upset) Chargers
Comfort Level: Asking for Bar-B-Q to be your final meal on death row and getting served the McRib.
Baltimore Ravens (5-2) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2)
The Steelers are undefeated at home so far and the Ravens have lost 2 out of 3 games on the road. Their opponents in those games were the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars. Pittsburgh also has a little pay back in mind for Baltimore after the week 1 beat down. The Titans and Jaguars both beat the Ravens by shutting down the offense. The Steelers have that capability but also have offensive weapons that those two teams lacked.
Comfort Level: Having this present delivered to your house on accident. (Come on couldn’t play one without the other…)
Chicago Bears (4-3) @ Philadelphia Eagles (3-4)
The Eagles haven’t beaten anyone that has a winning record as it stands currently and their 4 losses are all to teams that are playoff caliber. The Bears three losses are against the elite teams in the NFC, the Packers (7-0), the Lions (6-2), and the Saints (5-3). Two of those losses for Chicago were on the road against those teams. What does it all mean? That they’re about to have a fourth loss to another elite NFC team. The Eagles are in the midst of turning this season around and becoming the team we all thought they were. Don’t let them off the hook. How many fantasy match ups are going to come down to Matt Forte vs LeSean McCoy? The top 2 NFC running backs when it comes to total yards. It’ll be an exciting game but Philly will be too much.
Comfort Level: Having a kid with my oldest child’s mom or Satan’s spawn (one and the same).
Bye Week Teams
Minnesota Vikings (2-6)
Carolina Panthers (2-6)
Jacksonville Jaguars (2-6)
Detroit Lions (6-2)