There’s plenty of fantastic games to kick off the NFL season, starting first and foremost on Thursday night with the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks vs. the Green Bay Packers.
Let’s not waste time and get right to the picks.
Packers at Seahawks (-6) — The last time these two teams met each other, we were all subjected to the worst mistake of the replacement ref era. Fortunately for the Packers, Golden Tate is no longer around to catch miraculous — and, yes, unbelievable — catches in the end zone. Unfortunately for the Packers, who surrendered eight sacks in that very same game, the Seahawks still sport the best defense in the NFL, Aaron Rodgers be damned.
My pick: Seahawks
Saints (-3) at Falcons — Sean Payton owns the Atlanta Falcons. He’s 12-2 against his NFC South division foe. And let’s all agree just agree that Drew Brees and Jimmy Graham are a better combo than Matt Ryan and Julio Jones/Roddy White.
My pick: Saints
Bengals at Ravens (-1.5) — I like the idea of Geno Atkins and Vontaze Burfict stuffing the Ravens’ running game. This one will be won in the trenches by Cincy.
My pick: Bengals
Bills at Bears (-7) — Can you really trust a team that names Brandon Spikes a captain? I don’t think so. Notwithstanding, the Bears have a fantastic trio of offensive weapons (Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery, and Matt Forte) for Jay Cutler and have upgraded immensely on the defensive line with Jared Allen.
My pick: Bears