New York Giants
Pittsburgh Steelers go on the road to battle the New York Giants. The Top-3 running-back, Saquon Barkley is joined by one of the league’s most underrated quarterbacks, Daniel Jones.
“Despite the turnovers, Jones averaged two passing touchdowns per contest! This quarterback didn’t only have consistent performances, he recorded elite prestigiousness that only two other quarterbacks captured. Fanduel noted that Jones put up two of the top 10 QB performances, something that only Lamar Jackson and Russell Wilson did”.
Jones will only benefit from OC Jason Garrett, who gets to be more focused on the offensive role and less on the head coaching role, which bodes well for Jones after his work with Prescott and Romo.
On defense, this team added “Top 100 player” CB Logan Ryan, to join Jabril Peppers in an improved secondary. All around, the fiery Joe Judge, has lit a fire under the team’s egos in practice as they have run laps, while making a strong connection at the same time.
This rising team with a new coach, who was an apprentice to the most disciplined Belichick, doesn’t bode well for a Pittsburgh team that hasn’t won their opener in three years.
Not to mention that the quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, who claims to drink beer, do one session of yoga, and golf for the off-season, is returning from injury.
Match-up to watch: Giants below average O-line versus an elite Steelers pass rush. If Jones is clean, he will make lots of plays, and turn the table over to a slow starting Steelers squad.
Prediction: 27-24, New York
The Arizona Cardinals travel to take on the San Francisco 49ers. I’m not sold on this team making the postseason, because of the key addition at an overrated position: WR (DeAndre Hopkins). I do like this team to come out hot in Week 1 against a 49ers team that has lots of new faces.
A 49ers offense that might need at least 2-3 weeks to figure out who’s reliable in key situations.
“DeAndre Hopkins is a special player, but it’s more vital that the 49ers weakness is often located at their corner spot. We saw how Sherman got exposed in the Super Bowl, and the Cardinals have that firepower to expose it again”.
Not only that, but the Cardinals also got an absolute steal with linebacker Isaiah Simmons. Simmons, who can be a sideline to sideline enforcer against the 49ers stretch run.
Also, Cardinals lost close games in both contests:
An improved team with a big game from a Top-3 pass rusher, Chandler Jones, and Top 3 WR, DeAndre Hopkins, could put this game in a win column for the Cards against a 49ers team that may not be sure which weapons to lean on in “Week 1”.
Match-up to watch:
Cardinals 21st ranked O-line (PFF), against arguably the NFL’s top pass rush in San Francisco.
Prediction: 24-21, Arizona
The Panthers are at home against a trendy Raiders team. Jon Gruden struck gold with the first-round pick of wide receiver, Henry Ruggs. On top of that, this team has improved their defense in the linebacker corps with the addition of Corey Littleton, but this game still has upset written all over it.
“I’m not sure if there’s a more underrated combination of team and quarterback, with this organization. The Saints, Buccaneers, and even Falcons, get high projections and off-season love. Brady has also stolen the love from Bridgewater, who went 5-0 in 2019”.
This team started 5-3 last year, then ultimately fallen apart to finish the rest of their games in a 5-11 record. This team boasts Christian McCaffrey, who might be the most talented player in the league. On top of that, this team brought in Teddy Bridgewater, who’s a special character in himself.
Outside of the quarterback and running back position, they match up well against the Las Vegas squad. They boast a potent wide receiver combo, Robby Anderson, and DJ Moore. The Raiders weakness? Well, cornerbacks.
This LV squad has a very young secondary after the releases of Damarious Randall and Prince Amukamara. The starting No. 2 CB, rookie Damon Arnette, has to match the Panthers No. 2 WR, Robby Anderson.
Anderson was arguably the top WR in the AFC East last year with the Jets, and one of the league’s best deep threats, by way of his 11 touchdowns of 30 yards, or more.
This game could very well be a shoot out, but the Panthers could strike quick in the remaining time frame.
Gruden will try to use his elite offensive line to control the game, which could help his secondary that doesn’t quite match the Panthers, where they boast Donte Jackson and Tre Boston in the back end.
Matchup to watch: Carolina’s young defensive line against Las Vegas’s elite o-line.
Prediction: 34-31, Carolina