We know, we’re a day late with this. But we promise last night’s game between the Saints and Vikings did nothing to change our outlook on 2010. We’ve taken some time to think about all 32 NFL teams and where we think they’ll finish the year. We also weigh in on who will take home the hardware and who goes home empty-handed. Today, we bring you our predictions for the AFC. Check back tomorrow for the NFC, along with our picks to win the Super Bowl and individual award-winners. Without further ado, here are our AFC predictions for the 2010 NFL season:
His team loses its season opener. Because Brett Favre refused to participate in training camp and instead spent his third straight offseason being a drama queen, the Vikings lost to the Saints in Thursday night’s NFL opener. Okay, maybe the defending Super Bowl champs had a little bit to do with Minnesota’s loss, but to say Favre was rusty would be a huge understatement.
With the exception of tight end Visanthe Shiancoe, Old Man Brett looked out of sync with all of the Vikings’ pass-catchers. He overthrew and underthrew Percy Harvin and Bernard Berrian. He was able to hook up with newcomer Greg Camarillo on a nice connection of 20 yards but came right back and threw an awful ball in Camarillo’s direction on the same drive.
Favre finished the game 15-of-27 with 1 touchdown and 1 interception. His inability to throw the ball accurately down the field forced the Vikings to become one-dimensional and painfully predictable, relying on Adrian Peterson and short passes of less than five yards. As The Big Lead points out, Favre was 4-for-12 on passes intended for his wide receivers and completed less than half of his passes that were beyond three yards down the field.
Here’s Adrian Peterson’s take on whether or not he’s better than Chris Johnson, which would in turn make him the best running back in the NFL:
Yes [I'm better]. He’s not faster, stronger, anything,” Peterson explained, via Judd Zulgad of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. “You’ve got to understand you’re talking to a guy . . . that’s just the mentality that I have. I have ultimate respect for the guy and he’s a heck of a player. I remember at one point and time me talking on the phone to Chris Johnson. He was telling me, ‘I’m just a big fan of yours. I like your style.’ Some [of the] advice that I gave him was, ‘I play this game to be the best player ever to play the game. That’s my mentality.’”
Now, for Chris Johnson’s take on how he stacks up against AP:
I don’t [compare myself to Peterson]. I am the best back in the league, he is not. I don’t think it is close. I feel like I am above all the other running backs in the league. I feel like I am above him.”
So Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was involved in a pretty major car crash on his way to the team’s facilities Thursday morning. Reports are that Brady is fine and was able to practice during the day, but we know the people from the other car were injured pretty badly. Aside from the surprise that Brady actually drives his own car and that his vehicle of choice is an Audi, there was another surprise with the whole incident.
Upon seeing the video of the event, I was surprised that Brady wasn’t more concerned about the status of the other people following the collision. Then you hear that the other car ran a red light and it all makes sense — Brady was probably stunned out of his mind and completely blindsided by the collision. I’d be pissed if a car ran a red light and hit my car too. Hopefully everyone is fine, but honestly, that crash did not look good.
Tom Brady — Unruffled at Crash Scene [TMZ Sports]
Anyone who follows LBS knows that NFL training camp is a time for pranks, especially when it comes to rookie hazing. We know Pete Carroll loves messing around with his players, but who knew Jeff Fisher did too? Check out what happened with Fisher and star running back Chris Johnson. As C.J. tweeted via Sports by Brooks Live, Fisher apparently moved Johnson’s car into the team’s practice bubble. Here’s the pic Johnson shared:
Johnson says they opened up a can of worms. I’m sure he can do much better than that. That’s pretty weak when it comes to pranks. At least it’s more considerate than filling the car with popcorn, I have to say.
The more the New York Jets talk, the more we get the impression that they are a team whose No. 2 goal (assuming winning a championship is No. 1) is to be hated. In fact, it has gotten to the point where I’m fairly certain they’re under the impression that they are hated much more than they actually are. Patriots fans, along with Tom Brady, hate them, but I don’t think the rest of the NFL cares that much. I’d even go as far as to say their desire to be despised has reached the point of desperation. Have a look at some of the things Jets players told the NY Daily News:
Antonio Cromartie: “We’re the Miami Heat of football.”
Mark Sanchez: (Talking about conversations with G.M. Mike Tannenbaum) “He’s like, ‘We’re picking up another one.’ I was like, ‘Geez! What’s going on here? We’re building a dream team.’”
Bart Scott: “It’s much more fun to be the villain than the hero.”
I don’t know if the Jets are under the impression that they’re the New York Yankees or the New England Patriots of earlier this decade, but you can’t just trash talk your way into being despised — you have to earn it with championships. A team with no hardware isn’t even worth hating.
Could it be? Did Terrell Owens actually make a respectable point in an interview? Yes, he certainly did. He touched upon a subject that has often been unwillingly at the forefront of our minds — the Brett Favre saga. T.O. told CSNPhilly.com, via Pro Football Talk, that Favre has been given a free pass with his selfish antics and the same would not happen if Owens, Ochocinco, or many others demonstrated the same behavior year after year.
Had it been one of us doing some of the same things, pulling these stunts that Brett Favre has done the last two or three years, then we would be labeled ‘not a team player,’ ‘selfish,’ and these are times where you want your guys to be in camp, bonding with your teammates, learning the plays, going through the whole team concept just like everybody else,” Owens said, via our friends at CSNPhilly.com. “And now it’s like, yeah, he’s set himself above team standards.”