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Kibbles and Picks 2018 – Week 2

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Obviously, this isn’t going to last.

Yes, I have a two-game lead over Stella after Week 1’s games, sitting at 11-4-1 to Stella’s 9-6-1 (thanks to the still-kind-of-inexplicable Browns/Steelers tie). But does anyone out there REALLY think that this is any kind of harbinger of what is to come?

Basically, the Jets blowing out the Lions on Monday night was the difference between the 5-3 head-to-head record I put up and a 4-4 wash. Doesn’t seem likely that I’ll get that lucky every week.

As for Week 2, Stella and I are at odds regarding seven games on the slate. A lot of them have me picking the road team, while Stella prefers home cooking; we’ll see if that comes back to bite me.

We’ll start on Thursday night. I’m going with the Ravens to win on the road in Cincinnati, though if I’m honest, I’m not entirely sure why. It’s largely a gut feeling; while their Week 1 win was impressive, it was only Buffalo. Still, I think the Ravens can pull it off. Stella vehemently disagrees. She’s not in love with the Bengals offense, but she thinks that their defense – particularly their front seven – is going to give Joe Flacco and company fits all day. She’s expecting a fairly easy Cincy victory.

Next up, in what could be one of the marquee matchups of the entire season, we have Minnesota going into Green Bay. I like the Vikings a lot this season – there’s just so much talent on this offense, with QB Kirk Cousins, Dalvin Cook and the double receiving threat of Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen. Their defense is really strong as well. Stella agrees with all that, but she counters with this: Aaron Rodgers. All bets are off when Rodgers is on the field; Stella believes that he is perfectly capable of simply willing this Packers squad to victory regardless of who else is on the field. However it plays out, this will be an awesome game.

In a far less compelling divisional matchup, the Dolphins are heading to New York to take on the Jets. This is a game that will define this year’s Jets team; I like what I'm seeing out of rookie Sam Darnold and think that you should keep an eye on receiver Robby Anderson, who I'm calling to have a sneaky strong performance.  Stella thinks Ryan Tannehill has found something with Kenny Stills and expects that they’ll continue their productive ways against a suspect Jets defense that won’t have nearly as easy a time as they did against Detroit.  It won’t be a blowout, but she thinks the Fins win handily.

I’m on record as loving the Kansas City Chiefs this year, not least because I’ve tied much of my fantasy football fortunes to QB Patrick Mahomes and RB Kareem Hunt. But those two – along with receiver Tyreek Hill and tight end Travis Kelce – are going to lead this team to a ton of points. They’ll score more than enough to beat a Steelers team dealing with internal turmoil. Stella thinks that Pittsburgh will be ready to bounce back from a Week 1 disappointment on their home turf; she’s calling for a better game from Ben Roethlisberger and continued strong play from the surprising James Conner. We both think it’ll take 40 points to win this one.

In another gut pick, I went with the Colts to beat Washington. I don’t have a lot of faith in Indianapolis in general, but I do think Andrew Luck will lead his team to a bounce-back victory here. They’ll need a couple of big plays on defense, but I’m gambling they’ll get them. Stella scoffs; she’s got Washington winning going away. She likes how Alex Smith is fitting into the Washington offense and believes that he’s only going to get better as he grows more accustomed to the scheme.

In one of my rare home picks this week, I’m going with the Cowboys. I think they’re ready to pull themselves together and win their home opener. A steady diet of Zeke Elliott and a couple of timely plays by Dak Prescott and Dallas should be able to take care of business against the Giants. Stella is a Saquon Barkley believer and thinks the rookie runner could have a breakout performance against the Cowboys D. She really likes what he and Odell Beckham did against a stout Jacksonville defense; they won’t have nearly the same amount of trouble in Dallas.

Finally, in the Monday night game, I’m looking for Seattle to rebound from a narrow loss to the Broncos against the Bears. Russell Wilson is still an elite QB, and while the absence of Doug Baldwin will sting, they’ve still got some big-play potential amidst their skill position players. And the defense, while a shadow of its former dominant self, should handle Chicago. Stella really dug what she saw from the Bears defense and thinks it’ll get even better as Khalil Mack becomes more comfortable. She’s no Mitchell Trubisky fan, but she likes the RB tandem of Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen to do some serious work.

And there we have it – seven games. I’m going to enjoy my lead, because let’s be real – it’s not going to be mine for long.

(winners in caps)

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ALLEN’S PICKS

Thursday, Sept. 13

BALTIMORE at Cincinnati

Sunday, Sept. 16

Carolina at ATLANTA

LA CHARGERS at Buffalo

MINNESOTA at Green Bay

HOUSTON at Tennessee

Cleveland at NEW ORLEANS

Miami at NY JETS

KANSAS CITY at Pittsburgh

PHILADELPHIA at Tampa Bay

INDIANAPOLIS at Washington

Arizona at LA RAMS

Detroit at SAN FRANCISCO

Oakland at DENVER

NEW ENGLAND at Jacksonville

NY Giants at DALLAS

Monday, Sept. 17

SEATTLE at Chicago

Week 1 record: 11-4-1

Season record: 11-4-1

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STELLA’S PICKS

Thursday, Sept. 13

Baltimore at CINCINNATI

Sunday, Sept. 16

Carolina at ATLANTA

LA CHARGERS at Buffalo

Minnesota at GREEN BAY

HOUSTON at Tennessee

Cleveland at NEW ORLEANS

MIAMI at NY Jets

Kansas City at PITTSBURGH

PHILADELPHIA at Tampa Bay

Indianapolis at WASHINGTON

Arizona at LA RAMS

Detroit at SAN FRANCISCO

Oakland at DENVER

NEW ENGLAND at Jacksonville

NY GIANTS at Dallas

Monday, Sept. 17

Seattle at CHICAGO

Week 1 record: 9-6-1

Season record: 9-6-1

Last modified on Tuesday, 18 September 2018 15:26

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