September 11, 2018 by Mike Madden

NFL Week 1

If I had published my predictions for week 1 most would have been wrong! Undeterred, here is my take on what happened, and what might happen in week 2.

Week 1 Summary

Rams 33 Raiders 13
It could be argued that the Rams should have scored more against Oakland who traded away Khalil Mack. Defence remains strong.
300+ yards for Derek Carr – but it’s the three interceptions that get the headlines. Long season ahead.

Jets 48 Lions 17
The Jets aren’t that good which makes Stafford’s 4 INTs even more embarrassing. Basement season for Lions in tough division.
Quietly efficient performance from Darnold and opportunistic defence. Probably wont win too many games but great start.

Falcons 12 Eagles 18
Atlanta were rusty. Better times ahead but vast improvement required.
Philly need Carson Wentz back – cant see Foles staying consistent for a whole season.

Bills 3 Ravens 47
Bills were as inept as everyone expected. 0-16 season?
A rejuvenated Flacco and a great rushing attack – but it was only the Bills.

Steelers 21 Browns 21
Wake up call for the Steelers with Big Ben throwing for lots of yards and lots of interceptions.
It wasn’t a win but the Browns can look forward with confidence that they wont be the worst team this year.

Bengals 34 Colts 23
Dalton to Green is still a big game matchup but lots of mistakes that need to be ironed out.
Luck needs a running game to take the pressure off him. Colts will struggle to win more than a handful of games.

Titans 20 Dolphins 27
Inconsistent passing game needs a strong running game to help out. Titans expecting a lot of Lewis.
Mediocre Dolphins beat mediocre Titans. Mediocrity all round beckons.

49ers 16 Vikings 24
Garropolo can and will get better. Encouraging for 49ers despite the loss.
Cousins played well. Cook could make a big difference. Vikings will be contenders again.

Texans 20 Patriots 27
Watson needs to shake off some rust but Texans should be ok.
Patriots look to be strong again – if Brady / Gronkowski stay fit.

Buccaneers 48 Saints 40
Will Fitzpatrick ever have a game like this again? Confidence is a strange thing!
Saints D reverted to type – they need to sort that out asap or too much pressure will be placed on Brees’ arm again.

Jaguars 20 Giants 15
Solid D and functional O, but will miss Fournette.
Barkley started slowly but was impressive when he settled down. Good dual threat with Beckham gives cause for optimism.

Chiefs 38 Chargers 28
Mahomes started well and good week for Hunt and Hill. Better than expected.
Chargers start slowly again and put too much pressure on Rivers.

Redskins 24 Cardinals 6
Smith could be just the man for Redskins. Peterson back to something like the player he was.
Cardinals desperate for Johnson to perform. There isn’t much else apart from Fitzgerald.

Cowboys 8 Panthers 16
Cowboys have lost too many big players. Opponents getting the measure of Elliott and Prescott.
Solid win, but how good are the Cowboys and do they rely on Newton just a bit too much?

Seahawks 24 Broncos 27
Loss of Baldwin could be big. Couldn’t beat Broncos despite Keenum’s 3 INTs.
Solid D but Keenum needs to improve.

Bears 23 Packers 24
Promising season ahead for Bears with Mack likely to get better as the season progresses.
Aaron Rodgers on one leg is better than almost everyone else on two. Packers season rests entirely on 12.

Week 2 Predictions

Ravens at Bengals RAVENS by 3
Panthers at Falcons FALCONS by 7
Colts at Redskins REDSKINS by 10
Texans at Titans TEXANS by 6
Eagles at Buccaneers BUCCANEERS by 3
Chiefs at Steelers STEELERS by 6
Dolphins at Jets JETS by 4
Chargers at Bills CHARGERS by 12
Vikings at Packers If Rodgers plays PACKERS by 7 otherwise VIKINGS by 14
Browns at Saints SAINTS by 10
Lions at 49ers 49ERS by 7
Cardinals at Rams RAMS by 10
Patriots at Jaguars PATRIOTS by 7
Raiders at Broncos BRONCOS by 6
Giants at Cowboys GIANTS by 3
Seahawks at Bears BEARS by 5