It feels like forever since I've done one of these. And it has been; this time last year I was writing and all two of you responded with snarky comments. Here's what I had to say:
One thing will change, however. By the end of this season one lucky reader(s) will have distinguished himself in the first annual Hogs Haven Fantasy Football League. Besides the obvious gifts of women and fame awarded to the champion, I'll be sending out a gift or gifts that may or may not be any of the following things:
- A Sage Rosenfels rookie Redskins card, which I purchased on eBay for the sum of 12 dollars.
- A free copy of the Redskins Encyclopedia.
- A free Redskins Cheerleader calendar.
- All of the above? You decide in the comments. I'm open to suggestions.
A three way pick em contest with Hogs Haven, PGH (who are just showing off, at this point), and The Curly R. My predictions: 1. PGH 2. The Curly R 3. This space. That's called protecting yourself. Even if and especially if I fail miserably in this pick 'em contest, and I will, then I can at least look back and say that I accurately predicted something, even if that something was my own demise.
What else... I have to submit, by tomorrow, my SUPER AWESOME POWER PICKS for Week 1. Fooch at Niner's Nation is organizing an SB Nation NFL Bloggers Power Poll which will be updated weekly. (Think Blog Poll.) Without putting a whole lot of thought into these picks, here's where we start with the hope that reader(s) will provide their own thoughts on what I got right or horribly, terribly wrong:
- Indy - I see no diminished returns for the Colts offensively. Until I see otherwise, the world champs are the class of the league.
- Baltimore - Accuse me of putting them too high. They won 13 games last year; Steve Spurrier couldn't do that in two years.
- Saints - I manlove Drew Brees. Tell me this is too high as well.
- Patriots - Not at all sold on the Pats just yet though they deserve to be in the top 5 in virtue of being the class of the league recently.
- Chargers - Moved down in virtue of Norval.
- Da Bears
- Steelers - This is a very well coached football team in spite of the fact that they haven't really been coached yet. Mike Tomlin is good in virtue of being chosen by that team's management.
- Eagles - Class of the NFC East and a team that really scares me. Andy Reid has a proven history of winning and did the incredible last year of doing so sans Donovan McNabb. This is not a team anyone in the NFC, or elsewhere, can afford to look past.
- Bengals - I feel like my entire power ranking is filling out in favor of offenses, which will likely come back to haunt me.
- Cowboys - Excessive love for the East? Consider this the last good thing I say about our hated rivals.
- Broncos - With the caveat that this pick is non-binding should Jay Cutler suck. Can I do that?
- Jacksonville - You have two impressive running backs with a recently monstrous defense in a division that has a pair of beatable teams in it. This team hasn't had a losing season in over 3 years.
- Seattle - This will haunt me because either Arizona or San Fransisco will prove someone right as those are the two chic underdogs. This division is bad and Seattle will benefit from that.
- Carolina - Will distance themselves from Atlanta and Tampa, both of whom are going to find themselves pretty low on my list. New Orleans is a problem in the division, but I think the South is very top heavy.
- Jets - This feels low. Someone tell me where they belong.
- REDSKINS - Optimistic.
- Rams - Earlier I called this division bad, but how bad is it? It feels like every team has a shot to contend for the title and so I hate ranking any of them too low. Consider this my backlash to all the Arizona/San Fran preseason love.
- Dolphins - Because we play them. Let me admit that this is a team I am not that familiar with.
- San Fransisco - I don't know how else to rank these guys and I'm not sold on Alex Smith, largely because I made a bet with a reader at Niners Nation that JC would be statistically stronger at the end of the year. I need Alex Smith, and by proxy the 49ers, to struggle.
- Titans - Too low, but they got lost in the shuffle. A very good friend of mine is a Titans fan and he is not going to forgive me this.
- Green Bay
- Chiefs - Larry Johnson will not play 16 games.
- Houston - I don't know if Matt Schaub is the answer, but I'm near certain that David Carr wasn't.
- Lions - Too low, perhaps? Is this just a knee-jerk reaction to their persistent struggles?
- Oakland - Defense is good enough to keep them out of the cellar
- Minnesota - Who will throw the ball?
- Tampa Bay
- Atlanta - Everything went wrong with this team.
That's about it for now though if I think of something else I'll let you guys know. I'm currently in a bunch of pick'em leagues, including an SB Nation one and another for Bloggers and Sports Writers (on top of my PGH/Curly R threesome, hot) all of which will be linked to somewhere here, so you can insult me for making such persistently bad decisions. Lots below that deserves additional discussion, especially the last roster cuts which I am certain you guys have more to speak on. Cooley is extended. And mmford is still showing up big time with his diaries. The Brothers Mottram continue being awesome and you may or may not find my words somewhere on their site in the near future. (Redskins win the NFC East, by the way.)
Generic are you ready for football or whatever closing. Then you say, "Yes, as a matter of fact Mr. Patrol I am indeed ready for some football." And then I say "Well that's really swell." Aaaaawkward.