You can’t win them all if you don’t win the first one.
So says John Madden and I believe him. I’m just not buying that someone in every locker room across the NFL said that on opening day.
You know it didn’t exactly go down like that when Romeo Crennel addressed the Browns prior to Cleveland Stadium taking on the aura of the Little Big Horn. I’m quite sure prior to the massacre, it went down something like this, "Ok men, listen to me when I say you can’t lose ’em all if you win the first one." I’m not sure Romeo said those words exactly, but if he did, it wasn’t exactly a confidence booster for the Brownies.
Dawg lovers like myself didn’t receive a big shot of confidence from the doggies on opening day. Only 4-of-12 (one was Pick’em and one push) covered the point spread. The best bet for opening day turned out to be playing the homies, which had a decent 8-5-1 edge.
Now that the shock and awe of opening day is over, Denny The Dog is determined to settle down and pick more winners than losers.
Sunday, Sept. 16
Bills + 9 at Steelers:Mike Tomlin looks like he has the Steelers ready for the Super Bowl. This will be a better litmus test, facing a club with a QB and an offensive line that actually will block in each series. Buffalo won the money last week, though absorbing its first loss on a last second field goal. The number 9 seems too close to double digits to pass on. BILLS.
Bengals —7 at Browns: The Browns? I know, I know, I will schedule the MRI on my head early next week. But I’m looking for the dogs to bounce back. The bookies should have a tendency to inflate the number here. I can’t really blame them after watching the Browns block last week. I’m not sure there’s a number high enough. BROWNS.
Colts -7 at Titans: What is it about Jeff Fisher and his Titans that you just can’t help but love? They’re in every game and play hard. No team was better against the spread last season. The Titans are on a 7-game money roll going back to last season. Good thing Tennessee doesn’t have a defensive back named Jason David. TITANS.
Texans +6Â½ at Panthers: Battle of Week 1 overachievers. Matt Schaub, the guy who played second fiddle to that dirty dog from the Atlanta pound, looked sharp in his Texan debut. The Houston defense isn’t bad either. Panthers pounded a Rams team that many loved (including myself) going into this season. TEXANS.
49ers +2Â½ at Rams: St. Louis was beloved by many as a preseason favorite. I’m going to give Marc Bulger and Steven Jackson one more shot before I put the question mark over its heads. I’m a little blind here having to make the selection prior to seeing Monday’s SF-Arizona game. RAMS.
Packers +6 at Giants: Tom Coughlin will be in a great mood this week. Hey Tom, have you had a chance to read the book yet? Not Tiki’s book, but the defensive play book! PACKERS.
Falcons +10 at Jags: Kenny White might be right. It might be a 3Â½ point swing for the Falcons opposition with the absence of top dog Michael Vick. Whatever the swing, it’s probably not enough here. JAGS.
Saints -3 at Bucs: I’m looking for the Saints to bounce back after bitter drubbing at Indy. Bucs bit by injury bug. The Cadillac might have to go in the shop for repairs. SAINTS.
Vikes +3 at Lions: Be honest, did you think Jon Kitna was on crack when he said the Lions were going to win 10? Maybe he wasn’t so drugged out after all. Don’t get too excited, the win was over the Raiders. But in this league, confidence breeds confidence. LIONS.
Cowboys -4 at Dolphins: I love Tony Romo, but never too big a Jerry Jones or Terrell Owens fan. Still, the Romo to Owens connection is electric! It’s almost as electric as Trent Green to Ted Ginn Jr. I couldn’t resist. COWBOYS.
Seahawks -3 at Cards: Home dogs were 2-2 in Week 1. This week the home pups will heat it up. I wasn’t blown away by Seattle’s win over Tampa Bay. CARDS.
Jets +7 at Ravens: Can’t go with Jets not knowing Pennington’s status. According to Tom Jackson, Chad can’t throw the ball over 25 yards downfield anyway! RAVENS.
Raiders +9 at Broncos: Jay Cutler looked a little Elwayish leading the Broncos to a comeback win in Buffalo. I’m not sure who Josh McCown resembles, but it’s not Kenny Stabler. BRONCOS.
Chiefs +12Â½ at Bears: The Bears D better be great because the running game was nowhere to be found in San Diego. KC couldn’t handle Houston so I’m not sure how the job gets done in Chicago. Can’t pass on the huge number, though. CHIEFS.
Chargers +4 at Patriots: Everyone has given their blessing. The Pats will officially be in the next Super Bowl. And they do look very dangerous. Chargers won’t go quietly. CHARGERS.
Monday, Sept. 17
Skins +6Â½ at Eagles:Philly didn’t look super at Green Bay. Washington didn’t look fantastic either, but in the end the young QB did the job. Campbell plus all the soupy points you can soak up are plenty good. SKINS.
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