Tank TV –
Week Three Games to Watch
After two weeks the football world is standing on it’s head. The Kansas City Chiefs and Miami Dolphins are 0-2 while the Detroit Lions and Jacksonville Jaguars are 2-0. The entire AFC Central is 1-1, with no road wins. Vinny Testaverde is starting for the Dallas Cowboys, and at the grandfatherly age of 40 leads the league in passing yards.
As my grandfather used to say, “Who’d a thunk it?”
Last weeks anticipated shootout between Minnesota and Philadelphia turned into assault with a deadly weapon as the Eagles shut down Minnesota’s high octane offense. Indianapolis played with their food, Tennessee, until mommy called in the fourth quarter. On their way to a win the Triplets made the Titans look teeny.
New England let Arizona hang around until the fourth quarter before finally putting the Cardinals out of their misery, and us out of ours. The Patriots looked like they took their bye week a little early, but still managed a yawner as Corey Dillon ran around the Cardinals D for 158 yards.
This week there are more games of intrigue, and 14 games of NFL football. The toughest part of picking the best game is all of ‘em are better than no football. Kinda like what an old friend of mine once said about sex. “The worst I ever had was wonderful.” I’ll drink to that!
Tonight I’m raising a cold one or twelve to the football gods and offering a platter of Nuclear Wings for the bounty we are about to receive:
Great White Game of the Week – Philadelphia at Detroit
Sunday September 26th @ 1:00 pm ET on FOX
Following last week’s laugher against Minnesota the Eagles come waltzing into the Motor City in what they must have figured would be a light week. Instead they’ll be entertained at Ford Field in true gladiator style, with a pack of hungry Lions looking to settle a score. Although it is still early, next year may finally have arrived in Detroit. A steadily improving offense joins a top young defense that will square off against a team that has a burning need to go all the way this year. After 2 games the Lion D has a +5 turnover ratio with wins over Chicago and Houston and have no intention of playing dead.
Philadelphia meanwhile sports a retooled offense, with Terrell Owens coming over during the off-season amidst the kind of shenanigans we’ve come to expect from the Sharpie Warrior. Along with Brian Westbrook, who in two games has 289 yards of total offense, Owens and QB Donovan McNabb have proven to be a formidable trio in their own right.
Shark Sighting– The Progno has Detroit in the upset, and I’m taking the 4.5 points and the Lion’s this weekend as they show how inhospitable Ford Field can be.
Whale of a game – Green Bay at Indianapolis
Sunday, September 26th @ 4:15 ET on FOX
The Networks are billing this as one for the ages – The mano y mano match up of two men who already have a bust inscribed and waiting in Canton Ohio. Cutting through the hype we’ll see a battle between yesterday’s hero and today’s usurper as the legend himself is pitted against He who would be King.
Brett Favre has gone where no Manning has gone before, having led his team to the promised land in 1997 along with eight Pro Bowl appearances. Manning on the other hand is a dynasty quarterback who has tantalized Colts fans with his incredible acumen but has yet to take his team all the way. This game promises to make up for the fireworks we missed out on last Monday night, and the NFL has their marketing machine cranked up and spewing propaganda like Mount Vesuvius.
Shark Sighting – Both teams features a top five fantasy back, with Edgerrin James likely to play in limited duty for the Colts while Ahman Green shoulders the load for the Packers.
Chumming the Waters – Tampa Bay at Oakland – Faded Glory
Sunday, September 26th @ 8:30 pm on ESPN
I imagine when the NFL executive team was selling this game to ESPN they were hoping for a classic battle between two playoff bound teams. Three games into the season and ESPN must be thinking about a partial refund. Tampa’s defense looks good, but offensive genius John Gruden seems to have taken stupid pills as the Buccaneers O is not OK. Scoring 16 points in the first two games wouldn’t beat Vanderbilt, much less an NFL team. Oakland is 1-1 and at least has a pulse, but they need someone besides Rich Gannon to step up as their leading rusher, as he was with 24 yards last week against Buffalo.
The media will make much ado about Warren Sapp playing against his former team, but he isn’t the real story of Oakland’s defensive resurgence. That would be DE Tyson Brayton, with 9 tackles, 2 assists and 2.5 sacks, while LB’s Travian Smith, Danny Clark and DeLawrence Grant have combined for 29 solo tackles, 10 assists and 3 sacks.
Oakland has a bit of a hangover left over from Super Bowl XXXVII, so don’t expect them to be nice when they make the Bucs walk the plank. If Mr. Hyde doesn’t send Dr. Jekkyl packing it could be a short walk and a long swim back to Florida.
Shark Sighting – Will John Gruden let Brad Johnson play the entire game, or will he punt for the season and give 2nd year pro Chris Sims take the reins? Johnson is the named starter, but if Tampa’s offense doesn’t turn it around quickly this may be his last start of the season.