By Shaun Morash
Brandon Weeden will not end up with a happily ever after story. I understand the want to say the Tony Romo injury won’t derail the Cowboys, but let’s face it, it will. Brandon Weeden is who he is, an awful NFL starting quarterback. He does not have Dez Bryant, he does not have Demarco Murray, and even Jason Witten is banged up.
I picked the Cowboys for the Super Bowl, but now they have NO SHOT. This team will be 8-8 at best and out of the picture. The Tony Romo era will end without ever having a Super Bowl appearance, because even next year he will be one hit away from further damages. It’s ok to want to believe in Weeden as a fan, but don’t buy in, it is a suckers bet.
Ten Yard Gain
1- Before the season many bought into the Eagles hype, not me. This roster is overrated and two weeks in, it is dare we say talentless. The questions about Sam Bradford’s health were warranted, however, he was never that good to begin with. The offensive line is trash, Byron Maxwell is overpaid, and the Eagles may have the worst roster in the NFC East.
2- As bad as the Eagles have been, they have not been the most disappointing team in the NFL. That belongs to the Colts. Pagano’s seat is burning, and if not for a lousy division, he could have been fired during this season.
3- The Ravens do not have enough to compliment Joe Flacco’s strength. Losing Torey Smith would have been fine, if Perriman was ready to take off in his rookie year. His injuries along with Steve Smith’s age have completely eliminated the deep ball to the Ravens offense and they are suffering because of it. With the Bengals and Steelers as legitimate forces, the season is getting late early by the inner harbor.
4-You will see no bigger waste of one of the 12 playoff spots this year than the Bengals. They are loaded, in fact, they may have the most talented roster in football. However, we all should not be fooled again at Marvin Lewis and Andy Dalton’s playoff deficiencies. They at 11 wins will waste a playoff spot, over say a 9 win Ravens team who could potentially make an interesting playoff run.
5- Ndamukong Suh is ignoring play calls according to the Miami herald. This should come as no surprise. Just last week many laughed and applauded Suh for buying his defensive line mates recliners for their meeting room. Giving everyone easier access to doze off instead of focusing on the task at hand.
6- Jimmy Graham has every right to be livid about his situation in Seattle. When the Seahawks made that trade it gave the NFC nightmares about how they would use him. Now coordinators are sleeping like babies. Perhaps Marshawn Lynch’s mother was on to something with Bevell.
7- Week 1 is always about overreactions. None were bigger than the positive vibes surrounding the Titans and Rams. The Titans seemed like a team ready to surprise the Colts in the AFC South, but losing to the Browns? No thanks. The Rams contend in the NFC West, and then lose to the Redskins? Yuck.
8- Preseason we all believed the NFC South was the worst division in football. The AFC South and NFC East now seem much worse. Heck, we can even begin to debate if the NFC South will get both the Falcons and Panthers into the post season.
9- Tom Coughlin should have sent Andy Reid a thank you card for taking the heat off of him in Week 2. How can Andy Reid defend handing the ball to Jamaal Charles in that spot late Thursday night? It also goes to show, if you have any quarterback with an arm, you can try and take chances down the field late. Alex Smith is not that guy.
10- Ill end the 10 Yard Gain by telling you who the best team in football is. The Patriots? No. The Packers? No. It is the Arizona Cardinals. Bruce Arians is clearly the best Head Coach to not yet win the Super Bowl. If Carson Palmer is healthy, that could change this year.
Five Games to Chew On
5 NY Hot Pretzel’s Game of the Week- Eagles @ Jets- The Jets are starting to look magical. I never thought those words could leave my mouth. The defense is for real, the offense is making bigger plays than anyone could imagine without a real quarterback. The Eagles are in gotta have it mode. With the Eagles offensive line a disgrace and the Jets defensive line a power house, 0-3 is a real possibility for Chip and company.
4 Blue Claw Crab’s Game of the Week- Bengals @ Ravens- The Ravens could be essentially eliminated from the AFC North race in Week 3 if they drop this game at home. After a long two weeks staying out west they welcome in the scoring hot Bengals. This game will have the feel of a playoff game and I expect it to be tight late into the 4th quarter.
3 Cuban Sandwiches Game of the Week- Bills @ Dolphins- Right now the Jets seem like the biggest threat to the Pats in the AFC East. The Loser of this game won’t come close to making that claim anytime soon. A Two game losing streak in division will have Rex looking like a fool in Buffalo. The Dolphins defense can dominate the Bills offense. Will a real contender please stand up.
2 Beef Brisket Sandwiches Game of the Week- Falcons @ Cowboys- Life without Tony Romo, Dez Bryant, and a healthy Jason Witten begins with the red hot Falcons in Arlington Sunday. Many think the Cowboys defense can be good enough to keep the Cowboys a float. If Matty Ice lights them up, panic mode will ensue in Jerry’s box.
1 Horsecollar Kielbasa Game of the Week- Chiefs @ Packers- Two classic franchises under the lights at a classic football cathedral to close out Week 3. What is better than that? Matt Forte gave the Packers fits on the ground in Week 1, Jamaal Charles will be on a mission to do the same in this game. The Chiefs defense cannot be happy with allowing Peyton Manning to drive down their throats to tie the game late last Thursday night. Expect this to be nip and tuck and a thrilling Monday nighter.
I had a brutal 1-2 week, buried by the Giants collapse and my trusting of the Titans. That brings me to 3-3 entering Week 3. Here’s to this week:
Steelers -2 @ Rams: The return of Le’Veon Bell will assuredly give the Steelers a jolt. The Rams proved they were frauds in their loss in Washington Sunday. The St.Louis defense was destroyed on the ground, and the Steelers now will have two backs ready to give them fits. Give me the Steelers, on the road, for an easy cover.
Cardinals -6.5 vs 49’ers: The Cardinals will continue to get disrespected in Vegas week after week. Arizona owns their home building like powerhouses should. The 49’ers defense scares nobody, and Arizona should put up points in a hurry. The Arizona defense will look to swarm, giving Kaepernick fits. This should be won by 10 points minimum.
Raiders +3.5 vs Browns: This is the 2nd straight week I will bet against the Browns. I would not have touched this game, until Cleveland decided to go back to McCown. Derek Carr is playing top tier level quarterback right now and should have the Raiders very much alive and well late in this game. If Cleveland wins this game, it will squeak by with a field goal difference. In this case, that is good enough for the cover.
Football Food of The Week
Lemon Pepper Shrimp. This is a personal favorite and one I made at Thursday night’s tailgate for the Redskins-Giants game. This is as simple as simple gets. Get lemon pepper dry rub at your local grocer. I cannot stress enough, you do not want the liquid marinade, the dry rub is the way to go.
Lightly glaze the shrimp in butter and lemon juice before adding the dry rub. Let that sit, and ironically marinate for an hour or so before cooking. I prefer to grill them, but you can also broil them in the oven. Serve and watch everyone’s taste buds dance with every touchdown.
Thanks for reading and enjoy Week 3. Follow me on Twitter @MrazCBS.