Welcome to another edition of the Crystal Schnoz NFL Precaps, a weekly column where the Schnoz looks ahead to all the games played between two professional football teams in which they try to score more points than each other while wearing cool helmets.
If you’ve wandered here by accident, federal law requires you to read this entire post before exiting. Skimming – while not technically illegal – is greatly frowned upon.
Week 4 features 13 games, including one that was played last night! And yes, we’ll briefly touch ’em all.
About last night – Giants 45, Redskins 14 – did we learn anything?
3 Things We Learned Last Night
1. We learned that these are the same old Giants. The moment when you write them off as terrible, they pull a whooping out of their shorts that you didn’t see coming.
2. We learned that these Thursday Nighters are never close. Margin of victory so far this year is 20+ points in all 4 games.
3. We learned that Larry Donnell should have been started by the Schnoz this week in fantasy, but instead he collected those 3 TDs on the Schnoz’s bench and now I want to smash a coffee mug through a glass table.
Before we look at this week’s matchups, can we see The Schnoz’s power rankings.
The Top 7 Teams in the League at This Very Moment
1. Seattle – It was close, but they took care of Denver at home.
2. Denver – It was close, which was all that mattered.
3. Cincinnati – We’re already talking about whether they can do this in the playoffs.
4. San Diego – Could be 6-1 going into Week 8 matchup at Denver.
5. Philadelphia – 30+ points in all 3 games. Chip Kelly delivering once again.
6. Baltimore – Kubiak’s offense can move the ball when it counts, no matter the RB.
7. Arizona – The Cincinnati of the NFC. Solid on both sides. At Denver next week!
If the NFL relegated teams like the Premier League, which 3 would be in the most trouble?
The Relegation Zone
30. St. Louis – Pulled a “Dallas” by blowing a 21-point lead to Dallas.
31. Tampa Bay – With 10 days to stew on that drubbing, will they show up or pack it in?
32. Oakland – The NFL might cancel their return flight from London.
And in an attempt to keep the non-football demographic engaged, we offer you this.
The Non-Amish Country Picture/Video of the Week
A text conversation I had with my then 9-year old son a couple years ago.
Still cracks me up.
And now back to football. If you could only watch one game this week, it would be?
If the Schnoz Could Only Watch One Game This Week
None. If you’re limiting me to one game, I won’t watch any. You’re not the boss of me.
Fine, we get it. Let’s cover all the games.
The Schnoz’s 3 Favorite Games This Week
1. Carolina at Baltimore – I could care less that this is the Steve Smith rematch game, I just want to see if Baltimore is as good as I think they are.
2. Philly at San Francisco – The best second-half team vs. the worse second-half team. The Eagles might score fifty after the break. Is Harbaugh losing this team? (If so, it’s probably because of the baggy khakis. Enough with the baggy khakis, Harbaugh!)
3. Green Bay at Chicago – Decent chance the Packers and Niners go to 1-3 after this week. Gun to my head, I think it would be the Niners if I had to pick one, though. The Packers haven’t impressed me, but Rodgers and company should be able to put up some points against the Bears this week.
Those are great games! I love football! There’s no way it could be better, right?
The “Football Could Be Better” Rule Change of the Week
This week let’s go with the “Fantasy Football Could Be Better” Rule change of the week.
How about instead of drafting players, we just draft teams? Wouldn’t that be so much easier than worrying about running backs by committee, injury report designations, and all that? Imagine this starting lineup:
QB – Atlanta
Receiving – Cincinnati
Rushing – Philadelphia
Flex – Green Bay Rushing
Defense – San Diego
Kicker – New Orleans
Why this would be amazing:
1. All receiving yards would count for your team. So no matter who caught that TD pass: AJ Green, Jermaine Gresham, Gio Bernard, or even Andy Dalton (on a pass from Sanu), you would get the points because you have the Bengals Receiving.
2. Never worry about handcuffing a running back, backfield timeshares, or TD vultures. You’ve got the Green Bay rushing offense. Let it be Lacy, Starks, Kuhn, or even Rodgers on the sneak. You’re still getting the points.
3. 4 Bench Spots. That’s it And it’s on you to make sure you can fill a spot during a bye week. (And with only 10 rounds in the draft, they’ll go quicker too.)
Go ahead, shoot holes in this idea. But I love it and I demand that ESPN adopt it!
TD Celebration of the Week That Shouldn’t Be a Penalty
Let’s take a break from the TD Celebration item this week to marvel at the wonder and tragedy of a player injuring himself for the season after celebrating a sack.
Which three games are the least appealing to you, oh great and powerful Schnoz?
The Schnoz’s 3 Least Favorite Games This Week
1. Miami vs. Oakland (in London) – The only thing grosser than this game is the fact that I picked Miami for the playoffs before the season.
2. Buffalo at Houston – It’s the “Which QB can be the least terrible” bowl. I’ve got EJ Manuel as slightly more terrible than Ryan Fitzpatrick, but let’s see how it plays out.
3. Jacksonville at San Diego – One of the league’s best offenses in the Chargers against the league’s worst tackling defense? Yes, it’s a trap game for San Diego, but the trap is made out of wet toilet paper. Shouldn’t be a problem.
Oh, we almost forgot to mention this week’s sponsor,
This Week’s Sponsor of the Crystal Schnoz Precap
McDonald’s – They’re STILL giving out free coffee from now until September 29th.
The Crystal Schnoz is all about free coffee, even if it’s from McDonald’s.
On a related note, the Schnoz is trying to reduce his coffee intake these days. One cup became two cups which started to creep into three cups and suddenly I’m thinking I’ve got too much caffeine in my system. I’ve backed down to one cup a day and so far so good. Except for the fact that I love coffee and really really want to drink it all morning. Perhaps I should be stocking up on decaf. Why are we still talking about this?
Let’s quickly mention the other games.
Quick Mentions of the Other Games
Detroit at New York Jets – Always a different Lions team on the road. Can new regime change that?
Tennessee at Indianapolis – Andrew Luck making an early case for MVP. Heard it here first.
Tampa Bay at Pittsburgh – These teams looked like opposites last weekend. Trap alert!
Atlanta at Minnesota – Teddy Bridgewater Alert! Take the over.
New Orleans at Dallas – Time to worry if the underwhelming Saints offense can’t get on track vs. this D.
New England at Kansas City – Patriots are notorious slow starters, but geesh. Are they even good?
By the way, how did your predictions do last week?
Schnoz Bold Predictions From Last Week
I went 0-3, of course. (Now 0-9 on the year)
1. Both Manning brothers lose by more than 7 points. LOSS!
2. The AFC West goes 1-3 this week. LOSS!
3. NO, GB, and IND combine to score more than 100 points. LOSS!
What about for this week?
Schnoz Bold Predictions For This Week
1. The AFC East will go 1-3 this week.
2. ATL, NO, and NE will combine to score 99 or more points on the road this week.
3. Philly covers the 5.5 points and wins outright in San Francisco.
Enjoy the games, everyone!