Week 2 Edition
Written by @Bo_McBigTime
The inaugural edition of PICANTakes last week was not an abominating failure. In fact, two of my spicier takes were partially correct. Therefore, since I make the rules of this column, I am calling two of them a push.
The other two were losses: Boston Scott was not good enough behind a tattered offensive line and the game script was not in Philly’s favor, as expected. He was nowhere near RB1 numbers, as my Draft Kings losses will attest.
The other loss was on the Buccaneers falling short of 20 points. They looked as I predicted: out of sync, but managed a garbage time touchdown to a gimpy Mike Evans to put them over the top. A close loss is clearly still a loss, but it was encouraging that my take wasn’t just some bearded fat guy yelling at the clouds and rambling on about nonsense.
What I’m calling push #1 was Joe Burrow’s debut, where his poise was outstanding and he managed to score a rushing TD that was counteracted with the one turnover. The spicy take would have been a win, but for the game-winning touchdown to AJ Green getting overturned by a blatant offensive pass interference call. Burrow is tough as nails and might be the next Joe Cool.
Push #2 was also another take that narrowly missed the grandeur of the full spice. I was all in on Arizona’s upset of San Francisco all week. In a family full of 49ers fans, I was not popular and temporarily ostracized from the living room for my blasphemous prediction. Kyler Murray led the offense and Jimmy Garoppolo was predictably bad under pressure and ill-equipped to lead a comeback with a hobbled George Kittle and a wide receiver corps staffed with pharmacists and gas station attendants. I was brazen with my Arizona-by-10 premonition and it ended in a smaller victory for the upstart Cardinals. I, of course, had to take my victory laps on Twitter, instead of facing the torches and pitchforks by parading in Northern California.
This week, we are keeping all the habanero hubris intact. Attempting to go crazy with these predictions is a ton of fun, but challenges the very fabric of who I am as a person. I’m a chill Californian; there isn’t much that gets me fired up. You guys who read this column last week and wanted me burned at the stake are the reason I shotgunned a Red Bull this morning and put myself out there again to be ridiculed. Again, I’m not fragile. Don’t censor your shaming. I’m all for freedom of speech, even if it means some feelings get hurt.
Jonathan Taylor Will Compile 200 Yards from Scrimmage
JT is, and has always been, my rookie pick 1.01. I watch a ton of college football and he is as explosive a playmaker as I’ve seen. Now that Marlon Mack met an untimely end to his season, expect Taylor to see a cornucopia of touches in tandem with Nyheim Hines. JT is gifted with the ball in his hands. I compare him to be arguably the next Adrian Peterson, which is higher praise than even some truthers are willing to dish out. The Vikings were eviscerated by Green Bay last week, calling into question whether they can stop a more versatile attack from the Colts. Philip Rivers might just turn JT, not Hines, into this year’s Austin Ekeler. Taylor is talented enough to be even better than that and may start his march to the Hall of Fame this week.
The Panthers Will Not Score a Touchdown in Tampa
The main takeaway I had from last week’s game in New Orleans was how tough the Tampa Bay defense looked, even in a losing effort. Michael Thomas was non-existent and that’s unheard of. Alvin Kamara found the end zone twice, but was bottled up the entire contest. I’m predicting a similar treatment for DJ Moore and Christian McCaffrey this week, with the difference being the chasm between the abilities of Drew Brees and Teddy Bridgewater. Fire up Joey Slye, this one will be 27-12.
The Seahawks Will Obliterate the Patriots by Two TD+
Seattle is the best team in the NFC. They are well-coached and Russell Wilson is finally in charge of the offense. The Dolphins were not the team to expose the depth issues in New England last week. Cam Newton was a great rushing threat, but was below average in the passing game and getting to his second and third reads. I’m predicting a major beat down in this game where the Pats defense is picked apart with a balanced attack and Seattle’s defense forces at least three Cam Newton turnovers*. Something like 28-14 or even worse.
Chiefs vs Chargers Total Under 40
We know the Chiefs offense is powerful. Patrick Mahomes is truly gifted and has seemingly unlimited weaponry and top notch coaching. Still, I see a divisional matchup where pace will be a key factor. The Chargers have a very good defense and will inevitably try to expose them as little as possible by grinding drives and keeping Mahomes off the field. Similarly, I still see the second half as one with Kansas City leading, also leaning on the run game with rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire. There isn’t much hope for the Chargers offense under TyrodTaylor, judging by their performance against a bad Bengals defense. They are also without star center Mike Pouncey for the rest of the season. Give me the under (and then some) in this one. 28-10 Chiefs. Edwards-Helaire at least two touchdowns*.