Week 4: First Quarter

By: Shawn Davis

“I can’t complete anything so you take this thing.”

Are four weeks of football already in the books? Man…that was fast. Although I’ve watched a great majority of the games – thus far – I still feel that I’m missing a few things, namely the Minnesota Vikings being competent. Where did this come from? Who really saw this happening?

Outside of my trepidation every time I see a defender dive at Adrian Peterson’s knees I fully expected the purple crew to be an afterthought this season – with eyes focused on 2013 draft positioning. Apparently Peterson, Percy Harvin and Christian Ponder, who hasn’t thrown a single interception this year, have other plans and they’ve competed like a solid team – one that is atop the NFC North at 3-1, by the way.

What about the Detroit Lions being anointed as the next “Great” team? They seem to have read the press clippings, got fat and content, and realized that they actually have to try once the whistle blows. I will bang the drum about their one-dimensional nature until they develop a running threat because as dynamic a tandem they can be, Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson will not make plays every week. Defenses are geared to slow them down because they know the Lions don’t spend much offensive time game-planning a ground threat. Fools.

Did someone abduct Andy Reid in the Sunday evening game and replace him with a wax replica? Play-calling on the evening: 36 runs/30 passes for the Eagles. Balance anyone? When LeSean McCoy consistently touches the ball, havoc ensues (23 carries for 123 yards), and Reid doesn’t have to worry about job security. Michael Vick plays much better when he isn’t asked to attempt 40-50 passes a contest. McCoy and Vick, together, can carry the load equally…and play ball deep into the postseason.

Are you ready for some of my dumb ass groupings at the quarter mark? Sure you are.

Playing For The 2013 Draft

Don’t kill the messenger here, history isn’t kind.

New Orleans (0-4), Cleveland (0-4), Miami (1-3), Jacksonville (1-3), Tennessee (1-3), Carolina (1-3), Tampa Bay (1-3)

With the Saints playing under divine dark clouds and, more importantly, a defense that’s dressed early for Halloween like a turnstile, there’s a chance for Carolina and Tampa Bay to fight back to .500 and make a late-season push for the playoffs. Do they? With the way the NFC East and NFC West are snuggled together – it’s going to be a bloodbath in the race for the last two wildcard slots. Remember, history isn’t kind.

The same argument can be made for Jacksonville and Tennessee in the AFC South when you think of the way Houston has started the season but they’ll have teams in front of them for those two remaining spots in the AFC as well.

Miami and Cleveland are off to bad starts…in divisions where they have been doormats for almost an entire decade.

I Have No Idea

Looks can be deceiving but a busty girl…is still busty. What am I talking about?

Minnesota (3-1), Chicago (3-1), Detroit (1-3)

A case can be made that Chicago should be in another grouping – as well as Detroit and I get that but I don’t trust the Bears just yet. Ditto for the Vikings and I’m interested to see how they’ll fare against their next four opponents, which are TEN, at WSH, ARI and TB; none of those teams are really scary but it will show where the Vikings will stand at the halfway point.

When the Bears create touchdowns on defense (two interceptions returned for scores last night) and takeaways (five interceptions, total) they are absolute beasts. The Cowboys got bullied in their house – and it was clear who the dominant team was.

The Lions have to win a few games in a row to save their season; we will see.

No Easy Out

Reserved for the AFC West, it seems.

Kansas City (1-3), Oakland (1-3)

What I really mean by “No Easy Out” is that this division is so warped I wouldn’t be surprised if one of these teams bubbled up to compete for the division crown; it happened last season where the whole division had a chance to take it by the throat…and they all stumbled in doing it.

San Diego sits (tentatively) atop the division but will they stay there? Which Broncos defense will show itself from week-to-week? Stay tuned.

Prove It

Do it for a few more weeks; too small of a sample size to look ahead.

San Diego (3-1), Seattle (2-2), St. Louis (2-2), Denver (2-2), Washington (2-2), Dallas (2-2), Pittsburgh (1-2), Buffalo (2-2), Indianapolis (1-2), NY Jets (2-2)

Is Mark Sanchez really completing 49.2% of his passes? On the year? I understand the furor building to staple the Sanchize to the bench, permanently, but maybe just maybe they should wait before injecting Tim Tebow. Why wait? Maybe I’ve been drinking too much. Stop reading…no don’t do that! It gets better.

Everyone drank the Bills’ juice last year after they started 3-1, but not this writer. I don’t think they’re good or bad, just blah, really after splitting four games this season. With the Jets walking in their own vomit there is a great opportunity for them to fight for that wildcard slot – after the Patriots keep the division title in Massachusetts.

I’m happy the Rams beat the Seahawks after they were gifted a victory they SHOULD NOT have on their record.

As long as Ben Roethlisberger is on the field I believe he’ll make plays for his team and I’m not going to kick dirt on the Steelers because they started 1-2 and are fresh off a bye week; nope, I won’t do it.

I predicted the Broncos to win the Super Bowl; don’t you start laughing!

Good

So far…

Houston (4-0), Atlanta (4-0), Arizona (4-0), San Francisco (3-1), Baltimore (3-1), Philadelphia (3-1), Cincinnati (3-1), New England (2-2), New York Giants (2-2), Green Bay (2-2)

I feel that this season’s Super Bowl winner will be in this bunch, I just do. Giants fans should relax because their team won’t play with any urgency until the local papers call for Coughlin’s job and the team chemistry begins to implode behind the scenes. That’s how the G-Men galvanize to rip through the playoffs, naturally. We’ve seen it the last few years. Take it easy, they’re playing for the wildcard so they can lower expectations and Las Vegas can bet against them.

Houston seems to be the most complete team in the league, in my opinion. They win close, in routs, with defense and offense, through the air and on the ground. As with every team in the league, injuries are going to decide a great deal, but if the Texans remain healthy it’s going to be tough to stop them.

Everyone’s looking at Arizona with one eye open because it seems so unlikely for them to have a 4-0 start but they have won 9 of their last 11 contests – and eight straight at home. They are playing hard and winning with the defense setting the tone.

Whatever Atlanta accomplishes in the regular season does not matter – and even they know that so I’m not going to sit here and put them on a pedestal like mostly everyone else has.

Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are still alive right? Don’t pay attention to their records; I believe they’ll be viable all season long as long as their standing behind center.

Playing For The Trophy

A bit too early to tell just yet, sorry; although last year the Patriots were one of the teams I had here and they did “play” for it. There are too many teams in bed together to separate the contenders so when Week 8 rolls around the view should be a little clearer…in theory.

Photo: newyorkjets.com

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