My real schedule won’t be pieced together for some time and we don’t predetermine where we go in November at the start. The most attractive games emerge based on how teams are doing, of course. But given the schedule we got Tuesday and what we know now, here’s where I think I would like to be, week-by-week, this season.
I have a lot of energy right now, and feel up to several double headers. I am not sure my bosses will be up for all of them, but we’ll shoot for the moon here.
New England at Tennessee -- The defending AFC champs and Tom Brady will be a giant measuring stick for the Titans right out of the gate.
Houston at Jacksonville -- If the Texans can swarm the quarterback like they did last year, we’ll get a major feel for whether Blaine Gabbert's going to be better under pressure.
Houston at Denver -- A tough choice over Jacksonville at Indianapolis and Detroit at Tennessee, but the Texans taking on former division nemesis Peyton Manning is too intriguing to pass up.
Tennessee at Houston -- A big division matchup. The Titans expect to be battling with the Texans for the AFC South crown. I am not so sure they will be.
Green Bay at Indianapolis -- A first live, regular-season look at Andrew Luck in a game that should be a major mismatch.
Houston at N.Y. Jets (Monday night) -- If the bosses will let me, I apply for a double header and maybe get a lunch visit with my parents.
Pittsburgh at Tennessee (Thursday night) -- A third game in five days. I love it. Can the Titans hit Ben Roethlisberger? Will it affect him?
Green Bay at Houston -- I top of a second double header weekend with a Sunday night football game that will have the city of Houston in an absolutely frenzy.
Baltimore at Houston -- The big playoff rematch. Both teams think they should be better than they were in January. We see if that’s the case, this time at Reliant Stadium.
Indianapolis at Tennessee -- In the middle of the season, is it the first Luck versus Jake Locker matchup of a potentially long quarterback rivalry?
Buffalo at Houston or Chicago at Tennessee -- I think it’ll boil down to how Mario Williams is doing with the Bills and how Jay Cutler is doing with the Bears. What brings more intrigue? Williams against his former team or Cutler in his former town?
Indianapolis at Jacksonville (Thursday night) -- The lone prime time game for both teams, which come into the season with low expectations from virtually everyone.
Houston at Chicago -- At this point in time, this looks like a very interesting matchup. I would think Arian Foster will get a lot of carries at Soldier Field.
Jacksonville at Houston -- A rematch of the Week 2 matchup should still have some implications in the division. But the Colts game at New England could challenge if Luck is going well and we want to see him square off against Brady.
Tennessee at Jacksonville -– If my gut feeling right now that the Jaguars could be in position to finish ahead of the Titans in 2012 is coming true, this will be a biggie.
Houston at Tennessee -– Are these the two teams at the top of the division with five weeks left?
Tennessee at Indianapolis -- Have the Colts had as tough a time as we expect? The Titans can’t afford not to sweep them if they are going to make a playoff push.
Houston at New England (Monday night) -- This one should be a gigantic game with big implications for playoff positioning.
Indianapolis at Houston –- The first time these teams see each other, and they’ll do it again in a couple weeks at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Tennessee at Green Bay -– I’ve been to Lambeau in December and love it. But if the Patriots at Jaguars game turned out to be more significant, I wouldn’t mind the better weather.
Jacksonville at Tennessee or Houston at Indianapolis -- Which one has more significant playoff implications? I’ll be at that one.