Berry Tramel

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NFL predictions: Look for Eli to trump Peyton in Manning Bowl

by Berry Tramel Modified: September 12, 2013 at 11:40 am •  Published: September 12, 2013

The NFL’s second week arrives, and funny thing. We didn’t have a ton of scoring in Week 1. Only seven of 32 teams reached 30 points. Five teams scored 12 or fewer. In this offensive-drive era, that seems out of place. If it’s a trend, we could be headed for even better games than usual, since lower-scoring usually means tighter games.

The first week included 12 games decided by a touchdown or less. Five of those 12 games were decided by three points or less. So more games were decided by three points or less than were decided by more than a touchdown (four). Let’s hope that trend continues:

Jetropolitans at Patriots: New England 34-7. New York somehow beat Tampa Bay last week with the help of a Geno Smith scramble and a goofy Buccaneer penalty. They’ll need more than that in this Didn’t Want Tim Tebow Bowl.

Chargers at Eagles: Philadelphia 30-21. Wow. Chip Kelly’s offense debuted with splendor. Looked like it was still in college, running wild on Washington State. Instead, that was Washington, as in Redskins.

Browns at Ravens: Baltimore 24-16. Rough opener for Brandon Weeden. He seems to have the support of Cleveland decision-makers, but I wouldn’t push it too much.

Titans at Texans: Houston 23-16. Tennessee pulled a stunner against Pittsburgh. This would be even more stunning in what is Houston’s old team against Houston’s new team.

Dolphins at Colts: Indianapolis 23-19. Miami is a sleeper team. But Andrew Luck is something special and wins the Don Shula Bowl.

Panthers at Bills: Buffalo 23-20. The Bills almost upset New England and the Panthers almost upset Seattle. But this is a Who Cares Bowl. Don’t see either team being in playoff contention come December.

Rams at Falcons: Atlanta 33-14. The Falcons lost a doozy at New Orleans, which hurt their pride but not their power rating. Matt Ryan and Co. remain my Super Bowl favorite. But St. Louis is 5-1-1 in its last seven games against fellow NFC West foes.

Redskins at Packers: Green Bay 30-20. Robert Griffin looked lost the first half against Philadelphia. Aaron Rodgers never looks lost.

Cowboys at Chiefs: Dallas 27-17. The Cowboys know Andy Reid well. They’ve played against him 29 times the last 14 years. But now Reid has moved on from Philadelphia and gets the Cowboys just once every four years.

Vikings at Bears: Chicago 20-17.  Minnesota could fall to 0-2 and be in serious shape. Adrian Peterson hit a first-inning home run last week against Detroit but did little after that.

Saints at Buccaneers: Tampa Bay 23-20. Upset special. New Orleans beat the Bucs 41-0 last December. Surely the Bucs can find enough pride to pull the upset.

Lions at Cardinals: Arizona 25-17. Carson Palmer answers a lot of questions for the Cardinals.

Jaguars at Raiders: Oakland 27-10. The Raiders took the Colts to the wire in Indy. I think Oakland can handle Jacksonville, the NFL’s worst franchise.

Broncos at Giants: Giants 38-31. Upset special in the Manning Bowl. Counting out Eli Manning never seems like a good idea.

49ers at Seahawks: 49ers 27-24. San Francisco was much more impressive last week. The 49ers survived Green Bay, while Pete Carroll’s Seahawks edged Carolina. Can Russell Wilson be as impressive as he was last season?

Steelers at Bengals: Cincinnati 22-14. Could Pittsburgh fall to 0-2? Could and should. Cincinnati is tough.

Last week: 10-6.

 


by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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