Enough with the Favre story, almost
N.Y. Jets at Miami – 1 p.m.
The Brett Favre Story continues and the quarterback he booted off the Jets, Chad Pennington, will start for Miami. The Jets have New England, then at San Diego in weeks two and three, so if Favre can’t get a win against the Fish, how friendly will New Yorkers be with No. 4 but an 0-3 record?
Line – Jets by 3
My pick – Jets 20-13
Detroit at Atlanta – 1 p.m.
Line – Atlanta by 2.5
My pick – Lions 30-10
Jacksonville at Tennessee – 1 p.m.
The Titans squeaked into the playoffs last year with a 10-6 record, and the Browns were left out with a 10-6 record. The AFC won’t be any less competitive this year. Between division rivals Jacksonville, Tennessee and Indy, one will win the division, one will get wild card spot, and one will probably barely miss the postseason; so week one’s just as important as any other week.
Line – Jags by 3
My pick – Titans 19-17
Tampa Bay at New Orleans – 1 p.m.
The best story of this game is the Superdome is fine and ready for football.
Line – Saints by 3
My pick – Saints 34-21
St. Louis at Philadelphia – 1 p.m.
The NFC East is the equivalent to the AFC South, which is why every non-division game is important to the Eagles. Donovan McNabb is healthy, but he’s missed time in each of the last four seasons.
Line – Eagles by 7.5
My pick – Eagles 27-24
Houston at Pittsburgh – 1 p.m.
For the most part, Mike Tomlin’s first year with the Steelers was fine, but a first-round loss in the playoffs isn’t acceptable to the Steelers’ usual expectations. The expansion of Pittsburgh’s offense, as Ben Roethlisberger threw for 32 TDs vs. 11 INTs and had the second-best QB rating in the NFL last year (Tom Brady was best), continues and presumably will improve.
Line – Pittsburgh by 6.5
My pick – Steelers 28-14
Kansas City at New England – 1 p.m.
Tom Brady didn’t take a snap in the preseason, but here are the Pats’ first five weeks of the season. K.C., at Jets, Miami, bye week, at S.F. Believe it or not, Brady and coach Belichick know what they are doing.
Line – Patriots by 15.5
My pick – N.E. 31-7
Cincinnati at Baltimore – 1 p.m.
Line – Bengals by 1.5
My pick – Bengals 17-9