For all of those predicting the demise of the Super Bowl champion Patriots, forget about it! You’ll have to wait at least another week because Thursday night Brady looked like Brady; Gronk looked like the best tight end in football and the Patriots handled the Steelers. I’ve been hearing “look out for Miami” and “here comes Buffalo”; sorry New England is still the best of the AFC East. Carry on coach Belichick.
Caution, yes these games matter but in the excitement of Week 1 we can be fooled by what we see in the first 60 minutes of a 17-week long season. For instance in Week 1 last year the Patriots got whipped by Miami, I think they recovered to win the Super Bowl. The Titans, Buc’s, and Jets all were winners in Week 1 and big losers at the end of the season with a combined 8-40 record. Repeat after “me it’s only 1 game!”
Here are 4 games worth your kickoff weekend eyeballs.
Colts at Bills ─ Sunday 1:00 p.m.
Two former Ravens assistants meet as Chuck Pagano’s Colts take on Rex Ryan’s Bills. If the Colts are going to be a Super Bowl caliber team this is the kind of road game they need to win and if the Bills want to hang with New England a win over the Colts would be a nice way to kick-start that kind of season. Give the Colts more than a slight edge at QB, Andrew Luck lead the NFL with 40 TD passes last season, Tyrod Taylor makes his first NFL start for Buffalo.
Ravens at Broncos ─ Sunday 4:25 p.m.
Which Peyton Manning will the Ravens get? The aging Pey-Pey who had trouble throwing the football late last season or the guy that dropped 7 TD passes on Baltimore in the 2013 opener. I suspect somewhere in between the Hall of Fame guy and rag-arm of the winter of ’14. Manning has won 10 of his last 11 against the Ravens the exception was the Ravens Mile High Miracle on the way to their Super Bowl 47 title.
Titans at Bucs ─ Sunday 4:25 p.m.
This is a quarterback game in a quarterback driven league. Only next of kin would care about these two teams who combined for 28 losses last season but throw in the top 2 rookie QB’s and it gets interesting. The Titans Marcus Mariotta won the 2014 Heisman Trophy and Tampa Bay’s Jameis Winston got the honor the year before. It’s unlikely they’ll turn these bad teams into winners in their rookie year but it’ll be fun to watch them try.
Giants at Cowboys ─ Sunday Night Football 8:30 p.m.
These two and the Eagles make for a good 3 team battle in the NFC East. This should be an air-show worth the price of admission with Eli and Romo chucking to Odell Beckham, Jr and Dez Bryant, 2 of the best WRs in the game. Beckham Jr’s 91 catches & 1,305 rec. yards were the most ever in the 1st 12 games to begin career. Has 90+ rec. yards in 9 consecutive games, tied for longest streak in NFL history. Romo lead the NFL in quarterback rating. Plenty to watch here enjoy week 1.