Football Nation’s Cold, Hard Football Facts Insider is Extraordinary INSIDE INFORMATION for Betting on Pro Football. CHFF quality stats, Pre and post-game reports and ATS picks for every NFL game week 1 to Super Bowl. If you want to win each week, Click here to check out Insider now.
This is a game that could get real ugly real fast, or it could be one of those surprises for the start of the NFL season.
I am not sure yet where I stand on it, but it’s football and it’s Sunday and, well, two former greats of the 1970s beating on each other cannot be that bad.
But, oh yes it can be.
Enter the world of Andrew Luck. The second-year player who did everything asked of him and then some to lead a downtrodden team only one year removed to a playoff berth.
While the sky's the limit for this superstar and the Colts look like they are real, does the second-year gunner have the same stones this year? Does the second season slump get to him (I am not saying it will)?
And then, there is Terrelle Pryor, who has been given the keys to the Oakland Raiders' offense and asked to drive the vehicle without a blemish and try to reach the end zone every once in awhile.
Pryor has been waiting for this chance. Oakland was the best fit for this former Ohio State great and while Matt Flynn will be on the sideline resting his tired shoulder, you have to wonder if the Raiders should have just given the ball to Pryor without spending all the money on Flynn in the first place?
Will Darren McFadden be able to stay healthy and carry the load of the Raiders’ offense? Can the defense stop anyone. And more importantly, since this is the first game of the season, does the Dennis Allen firing watch begin?
See, this isn’t just a “game” this weekend. This is the stuff we all want to know. Oh, and here a few bold predictions to start us all off on the right track.
Darren McFadden takes over
I have been saying this all offseason. People talk about Darren McFadden like he is so overrated, that in fact he becomes an underrated player. I have confidence in the fact McFadden may finally have an injury-free season.
Rashad Jennings (Jacksonville) was signed to take some of the workload off his shoulders, but the running back and uber talent should be able to run and catch enough passes to make the Colts' defense take a step backward. If McFadden goes off for 140 yards on the ground and 80 yards receiving, I would not be surprised.
Terrelle Pryor becomes Randall Cunningham
If Pryor can use his speed and athletic ability to score on his own and make the offense relevant, then this could the start of something good in Oakland.
Pryor has all the tools you want without the experience. He is not Jamarcus Russell. Hopefully the Oakland offense will be geared toward ball control and clock management. This is not the team that can win yet through a quick, passing offense.
Pryor throws for 250 yards and two scores. He runs for 50 yards and moves the chains.
Oakland gets the upset win
See, things do happen like this in the first week of the season.
I am not saying the Raiders will be a surprise team in the league this season, but six wins is about where they should be. This also means they come back down to earth next week against Jacksonville.
Luck has a great game (320 yards, three scores) but in the end, Pryor proves he is the next (insert the name of any mobile quarterback) player to show his wares in the NFL.