Tuesdays With Mobile: NFL Opening Week Chat
John Pez (1:04 PM)
OK, I know you're all ready for some football. So let's rock and roll. Week One is finally here!!!!
Brendan (Houston, TX) [via mobile]
Have the Texans made enough changes on defense to become a playoff contender?
John Pez (1:09 PM)
Brendan, yes absolutely. It all starts for the Texans on Sunday against the Colts. Wade Phillips' revamping of the defense from a 4-3 to a 3-4 with Mario Williams moving to outside linebacker and the addition of cornerback Johnathan Joseph were the key moves. They really have a solid LB corps with DeMeco Ryans, Williams, Brian Cushing and Connor Barwin plus draft pick Brooks Reed. The coaching staff believes rookie DE J.J. Watt can get at least 8 sacks. The secondary is still a weakness despite the addition of Joseph. Glover Quin moves to safety and a lot will depend on how much CB Kareem Jackson improves.
Alex (New jersey) [via mobile]
Every year a team is talked up to be the best team and go deep into the playoffs/ superbowl. Every year that team doesn't even come close. This years team is the packers. There being talked up to be this unstoppable force. Am I the only one who notices the packers being overhyped? Can anyone else see the arrogance filling rodgers head to the point of burst?
John Pez (1:13 PM)
Oh Alex no come on, I don't see Aaron Rodgers as being arrogant. That's just CONFIDENCE in his abilities. The only potential weakness is maybe the offensive line at the tackle spots and that's contingent on how quickly 1st-round pick Derek Sherrod adapts. So far, so good. We'll see Thursday vs. the Saints.
Dan (CT) [via mobile]
To Alex from NJ. Packers are a legit powerhouse, no over hype at all.
John Pez (1:14 PM)
We see where Dan is coming from. Legit indeed.
joe chivago [via mobile]
Were the bears a lucky 8-8 team or can they reach the playoffs.with that o line
John Pez (1:17 PM)
Joe, I don't know if I see it this year for the Bears. The Lions are improved and they really won at Chicago last year if not for that ridiculous Calvin Johnson ruling in the end zone.And yes, that Bears offensive line is worrisome. The likes of Ndamukong Suh and Clay Matthews will be tough to contain for this line.
Curtis( Dallas, Tx.) [via mobile]
With all the moves to get younger along the offensive line, is americas team playoff bound or is this gonna be considered a rebuilding throw away yr???
John Pez (1:19 PM)
Whisper the R word when Jerry Jones is around. Even with Tyron Smith starting at tackle and a new center replacing Gurode, I think Jerry is still thinking playoffs. Jason Garrett's 5-3 record without Tony Romo has Jerry believing he can make the playoffs, even with the offensive line changes.
Jimbo (Houston) [via mobile]
Do New Orleans have a chance to make it back to the superbowl?
John Pez (1:24 PM)
Jimbo, let's just worry about Thursday night first. It will be interesting to see how Sean Payton divides the backfield carries between Pierre Thomas and Mark Ingram and how many touches does Darren Sproles get. Saints can score on anyone with Drew Brees at the controls, but they need to improve on defense. Last year's playoff meltdown at Seattle was a disaster. Hoping for immediate contributions from rookies Cameron Jordan on the defensive line, or is it Jordan Cameron, no it's Cameron Jordan, and linebacker Martez Wilson. Now Sean Payton got his contract, so when does Drew Brees get his? Let's take care of that quickly Mr. Benson?
Ryan FL [via mobile]
Do the giants have a chance to winning their division this season or even a wild card chance?
John Pez (1:29 PM)
Injuries all over the defense for the Giants (Osi Umenyiora, Marvin Austin, Prince Amukamara, Terrell Thomas) and some key offensive losses (Steve Smith, Kevin Boss, O'Hara, Seubert). Nevertheless, a defensive line with Justin Tuck and emerging star Jason Pierre Paul can create havoc and Mathias Kiwanuka may become a force at outside linebacker. But the secondary lost its best player in Thomas, so unless Corey Webster and Aaron improve, this is an area of weakness. More thinking 9-7 for the Giants. They open Sunday in D.C. (can't lose to Rex Grossman, they just can't. I'm sure Tom Coughlin doesn't want to even think about it). By the way is it any surprise that Tom cut punter Matt Dodge after an offseason of watching visions of DeSean Jackson dance in his head.
Curtis( Dallas, Tx.) [via mobile]
Lol!! I know what or owner thinks.. Super optimistic! I'm a huge Jenkins fan but is he n often injured Newman really the best tandem JJ can bring to our secondary?? Still sour Nhamdi not a Cowboy!!
John Pez (1:33 PM)
Yeh Curtis you know Jerry, right. He may even be thinking 13-3. As for the opener vs. the Jets, it's looking like CB Mike Jenkins is good to go, but oft-injured CB T. Newman may not play (big surprise). Of course Nnamdi was the guy for Jerry to target. Even if it meant cutting 3 more guys to create salary cap space.
Matthew (bills country) [via mobile]
Can't you see the Bills winning ten games this year? We probably won't finish ahead of the Pats but the Jets are over hyped with a few over rated players!
John Pez (1:39 PM)
Matthew did you say 10. TEN. Let's see they were 1-5 against division opponents last year. They have kept continuity in the offense with Fitzpatrick again at QB with Stevie Johnson, Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller the top offensive weapons. This team still has no tight end of note and no 2nd receiver. Defense lost Posluszny and Whitner. Gained Marcell Dareus and ILB Shepard. Let's say 6-10 for the Bills and do you really believe the Jets are overrated after making the AFC Championship Game 2 straight years?
craig NY [via mobile]
Jets superbowl? I think this year is the year
John Pez (1:42 PM)
Craig thinks Rex's time has come. Well instead of having to beat Indy, New England and Pittsburgh on the road to get there, the Jets should try to win the division for a change and make their road to Super Bowl XLVI a bit easier.
Travis (KY) [via mobile]
Over/under 7 wins for Cincinnati?
John Pez (1:46 PM)
Travis, I'm going to say 6-10 for the Bengals. Just too much to expect QB Andy Dalton in a division where he faces Baltimore and Pittsburgh's defense twice to lead this team to 7 wins. It's too much to ask. And his top receiver (A.J. Green) is a rookie as well. Love Carlos Dunlap on this defense, but they did lose CB Johnathan Joseph. One of their strengths last year was Joseph and Leon Hall at the corners. The safety spots were a disaster, through. Yeh, just 6 wins for the Bengals.
Javie(Cardinals Country in Phx) [via mobile]
Do you think the addition of chester taylor will balance the offense in the run game? Also, the rams, in my opinion, havnt done enough in free agency to be the nfc west favorite according to all the experts, should the cardinals be the nfc west favorite because all the upgrades they did in free agency?
John Pez (1:53 PM)
Who can figure out the NFC West? This is the division where NONE of the teams finished above .500 last year. I like the moves the Rams made at the outside linebacker spots with Brady Poppinga and Ben Leber and safety Quintin Mikell.Bradford is going to be a star. Now if one of these receivers (Sims-Walker, Brandon Gibson, Amendola, etc) can make more of an impact, this team could be vastly improved. Gain Taylor, lose Hightower, I'm not sure that makes such a difference. Kolb makes a huge difference. A lot will depend on how effectively safety Adrian Wilson plays with his bicep injury.
rich Phi in Phx [via mobile]
Will DeSean get his long overdue payday?
John Pez (1:57 PM)
Rich, I don't know. But after some cap room was cleared by replacing Michael Vick's franchise tender with a multi-year contract, you have to believe DeSean is next on Philly's list.
jim nj [via mobile]
Who plays in the superbowl this year?
John Pez (2:02 PM)
Jim I know the Saints and Packers are playing Thursday, but I can't say who I think will play in Super Bowl XLVI. Aw, let's just say Falcons and Chargers. Just kidding with that one. I'll go with the Jets and Packers. Or the Eagles and Steelers. You hear me waffling. It's like Larry David talking about what doesn't go with mixed nuts. Well we know he likes a good chip. I'll stick with Jets and the Packers in Super Bowl XLVI.
tom nj [via mobile]
I think briggs would look good in green and white. Any word on trade destinations for him?
John Pez (2:04 PM)
Tom, I feel like we've been through this before with Lance Briggs. Remember when he signed with the 49ers in a deal that was voided. Then he becomes a free agent again and re-signs with the Bears and now he wants out. Lance has three years left on his contract, so I don't get where he's coming from.
matt Cleveland [via mobile]
In ur opinion biggest breakout player this year thanks
John Pez (2:11 PM)
Matt, last year I guess Stevie Johnson of the Bills would have qualified as a breakout player after catching 82 passes for 1,073 yards and 10 TD or Brandon Lloyd leading the NFL in receiving yards. Who saw that coming? Same with Peyton Hillis. Who would believe Hillis would rush for 1,177 rushing yards and catch 61 passes. So this is really an impossible question. But I'll say Saints tight end Jimmy Graham jumps from 31 catches and 5 TD in 2010 to 70 catches and 11 TD in 2011. I know that's not much of a stretch, so let me also say WR Brandon Gibson has surprisingnumbers for the Rams. Not Lloyd-like numbers, but impressive numbers nonetheless.
Joel (goshen) [via mobile]
With all the reports on Peyton can indy be counted out this year?
John Pez (2:14 PM)
Joel, without a doubt Peyton's status is the biggest question for Week One. His streak of 208 straight starts (regular season) is in jeopardy. By the way Eli is second on the active list with 103 straight followed by Rivers with 80.If Peyton misses say 4 games, yes I think you can count the Colts out. Texans should then win the division and Jets or Pats and Steelers or Ravens win the wild card spots.
Rick (close enough to Cleveland) [via mobile]
Is it crazy to think Cleveland can pull off one win apiece from Baltimore AND Pittsburgh, or do Browns fans have another down year to look forward to?
John Pez (2:19 PM)
Rick I still can't get over how well Cleveland's defense played in wins over the Saints and Pats last year. But that was with Rob Ryan's defense. Now they have shifted philosophy with Dick Jauron in charge and two rookies on the defensive line (Phil Taylor and Jabaal Sheard). So I think a .500 season should probably be your highest expectation for this year.
Eric (Fl) [via mobile]
I really feel the Dolphins are underrated this year and r going to shock alot of people...thoughts?
John Pez (2:26 PM)
Eric, we'll find out a lot on Monday night when they play the Pats. Love pass-rushing LB Cameron Wake. Love the corners Vontae Davis and Sean Smith. Pouncey is going to have to play like his older brother did last year for Pittsburgh. But this new backfield of Bush and Daniel Thomas will probably struggle at first. They need more time to make an impact. And then there's Chad Henne. Will he start to make progress? And what about Brandon Marshall. Does he want to be great or is he OK with just being very good? There's no way he should finish any season with just 3 TD catches, which is what happened last year.
Doug [via mobile]
Will Randy Moss make a comeback with the Pats?
John Pez (2:29 PM)
No Moss, please. Isn't that what Brad Childress and Jeff Fisher were mumbling in their sleep after Bill Belichick got rid of him. Moss is a great player, Hall of Famer and a TD machine, but for whatever reason his head was in the clouds last season. If it wasn't, then Belichick would have never gotten rid of him. So please, no Moss.
Mando (Fresno) [via mobile]
I think the rams are going to shock alot of ppl with a win opening week against philly and upsets against the giants and cowboys and will finish with 10-11 wins. Your thoughts?
John Pez (2:30 PM)
Hey, Mando, yeh the Rams are improved but 10-11 wins is a little high. But yes, they can finish 9-7, a two-game improvement from last year. Of course, you have them feasting on the NFC East with wins over the Eagles, Giants and Cowboys. Maybe we'll chat next week after their game vs. Philly.
craig ny [via mobile]
Which game are you most confident about week 1
John Pez (2:41 PM)
It really is a great Week One card, right. Saints-Packers, Steelers-Ravens, Falcons-Bears, Cowboys-Jets. How can you not feel comfortable with the Texans against the Colts if Peyton Manning doesn't play. By the way, I also love that Pete Carroll-Jim Harbaugh matchup as USC-Stanford is now Seahawks-49ers.
Blake OH. [via mobile]
My "sleeper" this season has got to be Tampa Bay, looking for a big running game this year but won't go so far as to say they will win the division, just raise some eyebrows. Your thoughts?
John Pez (2:44 PM)
Blake, honestly I think the Bucs will be hard-pressed to match last year's 10-6. The schedule is tougher than last season. Josh Freeman is a rising star and LeGarrette Blount was a pleasant surprise last year, but this defense is poor against the run
Willie(Menifee,Ca) [via mobile]
If the Cowboys dont make the playoffs. Will they search for a new QB and get rid of the Tony Romo. Because he is looking like a Danny White.
John Pez (2:46 PM)
Willie, Danny White took the Cowboys to the NFC Championship game three straight years after Staubach retired, including that heartbreaking loss to the 49ers (The Catch by Dwight Clark). So he wasn't that bad. Let's see, Romo has that one playoff win over the Eagles. I think Garrett will stick with Romo beyond this season.
joe (florence) [via mobile]
Bengals or browns week 1
John Pez (2:53 PM)
Joe, you know this game will be decided by a field goal, but I'll go with Colt McCoy and Peyton Hillis leading the Browns to the win. The teams split last year, but that was with Carson Palmer at QB for the Bengals, not Andy Dalton.
Miguel c. pinedale,ca [via mobile]
I think Patrick Willis is the best LB,and if he can continue will he basically become the best of all time?
John Pez (2:56 PM)
Patrick Willis probably is the best inside linebacker in the game today. But he is not as highly regarded as Ray Lewis over the last 10-15 years. Also, don't forget about Urlacher. I think the guy who is an emerging star at inside linebacker is Lawrence Timmons of the Steelers.
Jay L. [via mobile]
Do you think the raiders will make some noise in the AFW this year?
John Pez (3:04 PM)
The only team to sweep its division opponents and not make the playoffs. Only the Raiders. Still not confident in Oakland's receiving corps (Heyward-Bey is shaky, although Ford is a burner) and would prefer Zach Miller over Kevin Boss. And the defense must deal with the loss of Asomugha, even if Al Davis thinks Stanford Routt is on his way to becoming a star. Maybe 8-8 or 9-7 for the Raiders.
Jamal new york [via mobile]
Who wins the andrew luck sweepstakes
John Pez (3:08 PM)
Andrew Luck to the --- . With the first pick in the 2012 draft, the Cincinnati Bengals select --.Or do they trade the pick to the 49ers, so Luck could reunite with Harbaugh. If the Redskins finish last in the NFC East, they would be better off winning just 3 games and contending for this pick. Imagine the Luck in D.C.
keith houston [via mobile]
NO will not win 7 games this year
John Pez (3:09 PM)
Oh Keith come on. Seven. No, the Saints win at least 9. I have them at 10.
Chandon DC [via mobile]
I know the Redskins have a shaky QB situation but I can see them being a sleeper this year with a good loaded defense to carry them with names such as Landry and Orakpo I can see them going at least 3-1 into their bye week. Is anyone else seeing what I'm seeing?
John Pez (3:13 PM)
Chandon, we were just chatting before how it might be better for the Redskins to win just 3 and end up with Luck rather than win 7 and settle for perhaps Matt Barkley. They have a shaky QB situation and a RB in Hightower who is known to fumble. However, your building blocks on defense are solid with Orakpo and Landry. Add Ryan Kerrigan, who is adjusting to outside linebacker. But there are no real building blocks yet on offense, unless you believe LT Trent Williams will develop into a Pro Bowler.
fort leonard wood, mo [via mobile]
If Garrett Hartley is out who will fill that void and will it consume that roster slot?
John Pez (3:18 PM)
If Hartley is out, John Kasay will handle the kicking duties. He pushed a 39-yard FG attempt wide left, missed an extra-point attempt and made a 38-yard attempt in the final preseason game.
justin denver co [via mobile]
Do u see the broncos as a possible surprise team this year, there defense is very inproved and the offence is just as good as last year if not better
John Pez (3:28 PM)
The defense is improved with rookie additions of OLB Von Miller, ILB Nate Irving, S Rahim Moore. Making transition to Fox's 4-3 scheme will take some time. Then there's your QB controversy with Orton, Tebow and Quinn. This team plans to pound away with Moreno and McGahee. Probably good for 6 or 7 wins.
Roger (Hartford) [via mobile]
Are the Jags really going to cut David Garrard?
John Pez (3:31 PM)
Roger, yes they are. Jack Del Rio did the same thing in 2007 when he passed the baton from Byron Leftwich to David Garrard. Now 4 years later, Garrard, who has been bothered by back problems in the preseason, is on the way out. Luke McCown will start in Week One and probably hold the fort for a few more weeks before Del Rio thinks 1st-round pick Blaine Gabbert is ready to take over.
Ron (daytona beach) [via mobile]
Did the jaguars just phone in the season when they cut David garrard?
John Pez (3:32 PM)
Ron, yeh maybe they did phone in the season. But really, how far would Garrard have taken this team. To maybe 8 or 9 wins. Gabbert probably takes over by Week Four or Week Five.
bo knowz indy in [via mobile]
will kerry collins help or hurt the colts if manning cant go?
John Pez (3:36 PM)
Bo, Collins will go primarily with short passes to the tight end Dallas Clark or on slants to Reggie Wayne. Receivers like Garcon and Collie will suffer without Peyton, because Collins will probably go mostly to the vets on short routes.Breakdown will probably be 25 passes and 25 rushes.
Chandon DC [via mobile]
Do you see Ryan Kerrigan winning Defensive Rookie of the Year??
John Pez (3:41 PM)
Actually, I see Von Miller of the Broncos and J.J. Watt of the Texans finishing 1-2 in the voting. But Marcell Dareus may turn out to be the best defensive player in this draft.
Jaime Houston, TX [via mobile]
Any reports on Arian Foster's hammy?!
John Pez (3:43 PM)
Jaime, we're still waiting but I have to believe that even if Foster plays he would not get the typical workload.
Bryan (OK) [via mobile]
Will the Darren McFadden be able to replicate his stellar season a year ago?
John Pez (3:44 PM)
Yeh, Bryan why not. McFadden is explosive enough to be a consistent 1,200-yard rusher.
Shawn New Hampshire [via mobile]
Do you think with all the new additions to the Patriots defense they're legitimate superbowl contenders?
John Pez (3:49 PM)
Let's see, Albert Haynesworth, Shaun Ellis, Andre Carter, Mark Anderson, 2nd-round pick Dowling in the secondary. Meriweather and Sanders out at the safety spots. Yes they are legit Super Bowl contenders, but the play of Wilfork, Mayo and McCourty on defense will dictate if they can get to Super Bowl XLIV.
John Pez (3:51 PM)
OK, 2 more questions and that's a wrap for Tuesday's Mobile Chat.
Kris StL Mo [via mobile]
Are the Eagles strong enough on the offensive line and at linebacker to live up to the hype?
John Pez (3:54 PM)
That offensive line indeed looked shaky against the Steelers and against Nadamukong Suh in the preseason. Keeping Michael Vick healthy is key for this team. Eagles never really had good linebackers. Strength of their defense is thesecondary and Cole and Babin at the end positions.
Keenan Tennessee [via mobile]
Do you see the Titans maybe slipping into the playoffs this year and what's your prediciton on CJ2K's production this year?
John Pez (3:55 PM)
No for the Titans slipping into the playoffs, but CJ2K will go for about 1,600 yards this season.
John Pez (4:02 PM)
Thanks to all of you for participating in Tuesday's Mobile Chat. Our last 2 Super Bowl winners kick off on Thursday night. And as Bart Scott would say, "CAN'T WAIT"