Friday, September 18, 2009

Week 2 Pick: Upset Special

I was tempted by a lot of games for this category, like going Giants over the Cowboys, Carolina over Atlanta, or Arizona over Jacksonville. However, one stood out to me as the most probably upset, and that is:

Oakland Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs

Over/Under: 38
Line: Chiefs by 3 1/2

My Thoughts:
You're probably saying to yourself, "3.5 isn't much of a line to pick against and call it an upset." And you're not (completely) wrong. However, picking a Raiders game always counts as an upset, as I doubt they'll be favored in (m)any games this year. But I saw what that Oakland defense did to a very good Chargers offense on Monday. Does anybody really think the Chiefs are better than the Chargers? They do in Vegas, judging by that line, but I have to disagree.

All of a sudden, the Raiders are playing energetic, physical, disciplined defense, and they can thank Greg Ellis and Richard Seymour for that. Their offense looked pretty much awful in week one, though they did run pretty effectively. Kansas City's spread-style offense will work (oddly enough) better against the Ravens than the Raiders for one reason only: Nnamdi Asomugha. Say goodbye to Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs fans. You won't hear his name all game. Behind him, who is KC's receiving threat? Tony Gonzalez? Oops, nope, he's in Atlanta now. Larry Johnson will struggle to run against a good D-line, and a very decent LB group. Oakland will challenge Kansas City to throw, and force them to throw to someone other than Dwayne Bowe.

I don't see a lot of points going up in this game. The Raiders will likely run a lot, and possibly score off a deep play-action pass once or twice. However, I think their defense is good enough to hold Kansas City down for a pretty close, low-scoring victory. I'll go with the Under here, and pick the Raiders to upset the Chiefs.

Raiders 17
Chiefs 14

One more pick for this week, that being the Most Interesting Game. Hard to categorize, so I hope you agree with the game, if not the pick.


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