NFL Picks: Time for football

Published 3:05 pm Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Another NFL season kicks off Thursday with the Vikings looking to get ‘revenge’ on the New Orleans Saints.

I use the term revenge because I’ve heard it called this by some of the major networks. In reality, there is no way the Vikes can get revenge for not making it to the Super Bowl by winning a regular season game.

However, it should be great contest and I’m glad to have football back again.

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Here are the picks:

Minnesota at New Orleans

Pick: SAINTS

I think Minnesota will come out swinging and make a good game out of this one, but the Saints will be more than pumped up playing at home for the first time as defending champs.

I also think Drew Brees will be on a mission to prove last year’s NFC title game was legit and it was not fluke win. Look for Brees to take advantage of a so-so Minnesota secondary early and often in a shootout.

Cleveland at Tampa Bay

Pick: BROWNS

Cleveland quarterback Jake Dehlomme looked pretty good in the preseason and maybe all he needed was a change of scenery.

Cleveland also finished strong last season, which shows they are capable of playing competent football.

Buffalo at Miami

Pick: DOLPHINS

I don’t think the Bills are going to be very good this season.

Cincinnati and New England

Pick: BENGALS

The Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco circus carries on. Both of them had reality shows on VH1 and both of them are now catching passes from Carson Palmer.

As with most T.O. adventures, they usually start out good and end badly, so I think they’ll come out strong against the Pats, who haven’t played the best pass defense over the last couple of years.

Indianapolis at Houston

Pick: TEXANS

It seems like every year there are always one or two games that seem to catch everyone by surprise. Defenses aren’t up to speed yet and offenses are still a little rusty.

I look for the Texans to take down the vaunted Colts in what should be great game.

Denver at Jacksonville

Pick: BRONCOS

The Broncos are riddled with injuries, but I couldn’t name much of the Jags’ receiving core of the top of my head.

Atlanta at Pittsburgh

Pick: FALCONS

That four-game Ben Roethlisberger suspension may cost the Steelers the playoffs this year.

Oakland at Tennessee

Pick: TITANS

The Titans are another team that finished strong last year and it’s always a good thing to be playing the Raiders.

Carolina at New York Giants

Pick: GIANTS

I don’t see the Matt Moore era going over to well in Carolina, and the Jimmy Clausen experiment doesn’t sound too promising either.

If the Giants get speed-back Ahmad Bradshaw involved more on offense, they could be pretty potent.

Detroit at Chicago

Pick: BEARS

Although I would love to see the Bears drop a home opener to the hapless Lions, it’s probably not going to happen in reality.

The Lions have made some nice moves this offseason, but are still a year or two away from being a contender in the NFC North.

Arizona at St. Louis

Pick: CARDINALS

I think the Cardinals did the right thing in letting Matt Leinart go. His arm’s weaker than Derek Anderson’s and he doesn’t bring much leadership to the table.

The Rams are in for another long season.

Green Bay at Philadelphia

Pick: EAGLES

This is exactly the type of game the Packers lose. A new quarterback in Philly, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has used the word Super Bowl way too often and many prognosticators are picking the Green and Gold to go all the way this year.

Maybe it’ll be a wake up call and maybe it’s a preview of the year to come for the Pack.

San Francisco at Seattle

Pick: 49ERS

The NFC West Division will be as wide open as any division in football this year. You can win it with eight wins and anybody but the Rams could take it.

Dallas at Washington

Pick: REDSKINS

Donovan McNabb has always been a winner and he should make for a pretty big change in D.C.

Baltimore at New York Jets

Pick: RAVENS

After a boastful season of Hard Knocks on HBO, the Jets are getting some humble pie to open the year.

The Ravens have added two top-flight receivers in Anquan Boldin and T.J. Houshmandzadeh

San Diego at Kansas City

Pick: CHARGERS

San Diego will be down this year, as they are missing their top receiver (Vincent Jackson) and top running back (LaDanian Tomilinson) from last year. But they should handle the Chiefs.