Who Will Start The New NFL Season With A Win this Weekend?
After four weeks of pre-season games, the 2019/20 NFL season gets underway this weekend with all 32 teams in action. The action gets underway with the first official game of the season in the early hours of Friday morning in the UK as the Chicago Bears face the Green Bay Packers at Soldier Field and this is followed by the remaining games across Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.
The New England Patriots are the current Superbowl Champions after their victory over the Los Angeles Rams back in February and they will be one of the names linked with a Superbowl victory this year. However after Free Agency and the draft, there are usually a few unexpected teams that come to the fore, while others expected to do well, tend to fade away.
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Let’s now take a look at the NFL games taking place this weekend to start the season in style.
NFL Week 1
Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears
There’s little love lost between these two northerly teams and of the two, the Bears have had the better of things in recent seasons after a pretty lean spell in their history. Aaron Rodgers will be hoping to inspire the Packers to a win here, but I just don’t see the support in place to help him achieve that against a frightening Bears defense. The Bears should win this one comfortably (20/33).
Kansas City Chiefs @ Jacksonville Jaguars
Will Patrick Mahomes explosive Kansas City offense get the better of a souped up Jags defence? This is one of the most intriguing match ups of week one and the result here will likely give us a good idea of the season in store for both these teams. The Jags have improved with Nick Foles at quarterback but for me, the Chiefs are so explosive, they should get the win. (25/48)
Atlanta Falcons @ Minnesota Vikings
I don’t think these teams are quite as good as they were a couple of years ago, when both were genuine playoff contenders. The Falcons I think probably have the edge in offense, but that Vikings defense is a real threat and I can see them being the difference makers here. Expect a close one but the Vikings to just about come out on top. (1/2)
Baltimore Ravens @ Miami Dolphins
I have to be honest and say that I think the Dolphins are a team very much set up to be transitioning over the coming season and I think it will be a long, hard season for ‘Fins fans. The Ravens are a decent side and they always play hard and I think they will win this opener on the road. (5/16)
Buffalo Bills @ New York Jets
Two teams who are perennial also-rans in the AFC North behind the Patriots. I like the moves both teams made in the off-season but I still think they are going to be well off the quality of the Patriots in the AFC North. This will be a close one, but I am backing the Bills to take the win. (27/20)
Los Angeles Rams @ Carolina Panthers
After a hugely disappointing showing in the Superbowl where their team was outplayed, outfought and outthought by the New England Patriots, the Los Angeles Rams are back this season to try again and I think they’ll get off to a decent start against a Panthers side who seem to live and die by the health and mindset of their quarterback Cam Newton. The Rams have too many potent offensive weapons not to win here. (5/7)
Tennessee Titans @ Cleveland Browns
The Browns are this years fashionable pick to win the AFC North after heavy recruitment and a strong draft but despire a 7- game winning season last season, I am not yet convinced they are the real deal. The Titans have been 9-7 for a few years now and they need to move beyond that to be considered genuine title contenders. I feel this will be a close one but I am backing the Titans to come away with a narrow win (41/20).
Washington Redskins @ Philadelphia Eagles
With Nick Foles now in Jacksonville, the pressure is on Carson Wentz to stay fit and guide this strong Eagles side to a divisional title. It will be between them and the Cowboys in this division but I do feel that the Eagles thrive when Wentz is fully fit. If he can maintain that through 16 games, they should win the division and that starts with a win at home to Washington. (2/9)
Cincinnati Bengals @ Seattle Seahawks
It’s hard to know what to make of the Bengals as they have been one of the teams that have underperformed over the last few years. Some new faces may make a difference, or they may not. Seattle tend to be more consistent and with Russell Wilson at quarterback, they always stand a good chance of a win at home and that is what I think will happen here. (4/17)
Indianapolis Colts @ Los Angeles Chargers
With Andrew Luck’s retirement announcement, the Colts preparation for the season has been thrown into disarray. Jacob Brissett is a decent replacement, but he is not an elite quarterback and I think that is a huge blow to the Colts. The Chargers are many people’s dark horse for the Superbowl this year and at home in L.A, I fancy them to earn a strong win in this game. (5/14)
Detroit Lions @ Arizona Cardinals
These two teams have had a miserable few years and in truth I cannot see their seasons improving a great deal further this time around here. The Lions are perennial underachievers, the Cardinals tend to have one good season in six or seven. This has the potential to be a real close one and it would not surprise me if Overtime was needed to settle it, but I think the Cardinals will just about do enough. (5/4)/
New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys
Can the Giants recover some form and be a threat in this division once again? Personally, I can’t see it and I think if anything, this season could be more of a struggle, especially with their best player traded to the Browns in the off season. The Cowboys look strong and I think they will start the season with a win here and be a real challenger to Philadelphia. (5/16)
San Francisco 49rs v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
After a few rough years for both these teams, both will start this season hopeful of better things and while I can see the 49ers making an improvement it is hard for the Buccaneers as I think they will be in a tougher division and a tougher conference. Despite that I am picking Tampa to win this opening game, but I think over the season the 49ers will have the better record. (10/11).
Pittsburgh Steelers @ New England Patriots
This is one of the great AFC matchups between the two most successful teams in Superbowl history, but at the moment, it is the Patriots that hold all the aces. Current Superbowl champions, they have a settled squad and have made their usual sensible, unspectacular roster moves. The Steelers are in a state of flux and turmoil and while they can score points, I think New England will win this game by pressuring Rothlisberger. (2/5)
Houston Texans @ New Orleans Saints
I think both of these teams will have an eye on winning their respective divisions and I think both may well do that. The Saints though are the team to watch here as while Houston’s defense is strong, it will miss the impact of the traded Jadaveon Clowney (who has joined Seattle) and I think Drew Brees will have fun picking apart the Texans secondary on Monday Night. (1/3)
Denver Broncos @ Oakland Raiders
I don’t really feel that either of these teams will have much of a season truth be told. The Raiders need a better year under John Gruden and I think they will get off to a better start here with a win but I think both will struggle in a division I expect to be dominated by better teams. (20/21).