Green Bay Packers Vs. Chicago Bears:
Both teams lost big offensive weapons to injury this preseason (Jordy Nelson and Kevin White), but only one team has the talent to overcome that loss. The Packers will win mightily as the Bears get a taste of what could be another bad year.
Predicted Score: Packers 27, Bears 10
Key Performers: Aaron Rodgers (3 TDs), Eddie Lacy (80 yards, TD)
Kansas City Chiefs Vs. Houston Texans:
Two defensive minded teams clash in Kansas City. The Chiefs, now with genuine wide receiving threats, will make life hard for Brian Hoyer and the Texans in week one. The Chiefs dominate defensively and go on for a win.
Predicted Score: Chiefs 24, Texans 9
Key Performers: Jeremy Maclin (80 yards, TD) Travis Kelce (50 yards, TD), Chiefs Secondary (3 INTs)
Cleveland Browns Vs. New York Jets:
A clash of offseason drama creators is fitting for a week one matchup. Josh McCown and Ryan Fitzpatrick square off in a game that neither of them should really be starting. This one is a snoozer, with the Browns defense scoring the only TD of the game.
Predicted Score: Browns 10, Jets 3
Key Performers: Joe Haden ( 1 INT), Duke Johnson (60 yards)
Indianapolis Colts Vs. Buffalo Bills:
Two teams who are looking to be playoff contenders this year are going to get scrappy today. The Bills, with newbie Tyrod Taylor under center, will impress, but the Colts offensive machine will outperform.
Predicted Score: Colts 31, Bills 21
Key Performers: Andrew Luck ( 300 yds, 4 Pass TDs), Tyrod Taylor (200 yards, 2 TDs [1 rush]), T.Y. Hilton (150 yds, 2 TDs)
Miami Dolphins Vs. Washington Redskins:
This one will be a close one.
Who am I kidding. This will be a blowout from the start. The Dolphins looked poised to be contenders this year with revamped offensive weapons, and I don’t see this one being close.
Predicted Score: Dolphins 42, Redskins 14
Key Performers: Ryan Tannehill (300 yds, 3 TDs), Lamar Miller (130 yds, 1 TD), Kenny Stills (100 yards, 1 TD)
Carolina Panthers Vs. Jacksonville Jaguars:
The two expansion teams of 1995 face off for their just sixth ever meeting (Jags lead series 3-2). The Panthers will have to adjust to not having their top receiving threat, Kelvin Benjamin, but they will be alright. A defensive matchup will see the Panthers win in an impressive outing by both teams.
Predicted Score: Panthers 17, Jaguars 14
Key Performers: Jonathan Stewart (100 yds, 1 TD), Blake Bortles (200 yds, 2 TDs, 1 INT), Luke Kuechly (10 tackles, 1 INT)
Seattle Seahawks Vs. St. Louis Rams:
Divisional rivals will clash in what will be a much closer game than many may predict. The crafty Rams, with a strong defense and consistent weapon at quarterback, will give the Hawks a run for their money. I can’t say the Rams will win in Washington, but they will when they go back to St. Louis.
Predicted Score: Seahawks 20, Rams 17
Key Performers: Marshawn Lynch (140 yds, 2 TDs), Tre Mason (85 yds), Nick Foles (230 yds, 2 TDs), Jimmy Graham (1 TD)
New Orleans Saints Vs. Arizona Cardinals:
Both past contenders with shaky futures for this season, this game will be a fun one. Watch out for Drew Brees and Carson Palmer to trade TDs and interceptions, back to back to back. The Cardinals defense will solidify the week one win, however.
Predicted Score: Cardinals 27, Saints 24
Key Performers: Carson Palmer ( 260 yds, 3 TDs, 2 INTs), Drew Brees (400 yds, 3 TDs, 3 INTs)
Detroit Lions Vs. San Diego Chargers:
The Lions look to kick off a season where they finally have a shot at success, whereas the Chargers look to dethrone the Broncos in their division. This one will be tight, but the Lions offense will overpower the shaky Chargers D.
Predicted Score: Lions 35, Chargers 28
Key Performers: Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate (2 TDs each), Phillip Rivers (280 yds, 4 TDs), Matthew Stafford (350 yds, 4 TDs)
Tenessee Titans Vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
Number one vs. number two. Jameis Winston vs. Marcus Mariota. The winner of this game is surely to be crowned the better pick in a media frenzy, but that may not be the case. Tampa’s defense will give Mariota a hard time, and Winston will get the win. But Mariota will get the Rookie of the Year award by seasons end.
Predicted Score: Bucs 24, Titans 13
Key Performers: Jameis Winston (200 yds, 1 TD) Doug Martin (120 yds, 2 TD)
Cincinatti Bengals Vs. Oakland Raiders:
Both teams still have a lot of questions to be answered about their offenses, but the Bengals veterans will get it done.
Predicted Score: Bengals 23, Raiders 17
Key Performers: Andy Dalton (200 yds, 2 TDs, 2 INTs), Derek Carr (200 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT), AJ Green (8 Rec, 130 yds, 1 TD)
Baltimore Ravens Vs. Denver Broncos:
The Broncos are usually deadly in week one, but the Ravens bring a stronger defense to the party. The Ravens upset the Broncos at home thanks to the play of Joe Flacco and the defense.
Predicted Score: Ravens 38, Broncos 21
Key Performers: Joe Flacco (350 yds, 4 TDs, 1 INT), Peyton Manning (3oo yds, 2 TDs, 3 INTs), Justin Forsett (80 yds, 1 TD), Elvis Dumervil (2 sacks)
New York Giants Vs. Dallas Cowboys:
The Cowboys had great success last season and will look to capitalize on the momentum from last year. but the Giants, at home, will shock them, as Eli Manning, fresh off his contract extension, will punish the Cowboys secondary.
Predicted Score: Giants 24, Cowboys 20
Key Performers: Eli Manning (320 yds, 3 TDs, 1 INT), Odell Beckham Jr. (135 yds, 2 TDs)
Philadelphia Eagles Vs. Atlanta Falcons:
Two high powered offenses go head to head in Philly. The Chip Kelly experiment, of which has had some odd turns this offseason, looks to prove its worth today. Both teams will play well, but the Falcons will crash the Kelly party.
Predicted Score: Falcons 31, Eagles 27
Key Performers: Matt Ryan (350 yds, 3 TDs), Julio Jones (135 yds, 1 TD), DeMarco Murray (120 yds)
Minnesota Vikings vs. San Francisco 49ers:
The much hyped Vikings will face the much-hated 49ers in what will be a brutal game for niners fans. Adrian Peterson’s return will see the Vikings win big in Minneapolis.
Predicted Score: Vikings 28, Niners 13
Key Performers: Adrian Peterson (140 yds, 2 TDs), Teddy Bridgewater (250 yds, 2 TDs, 1 INT)
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