BRONCOS (1-0) AT GIANTS (0-1), 4:25 p.m.
Outlook: It’s the Manning Bowl. Peyton (462 yards, 7 TDs) is coming off a phenomenal opener even for him. Eli’s lot in life is to throw for 450 yards and 4 TDs and be the “other” guy. Big Bro is 2-0 in Manning Bowls and should make it three here. The line seems a bit fat, though. An outright upset would not shock; I’ll take Biggies with the points. After all, I hear Archie has ordered a close game.
The pick: Broncos, 30-27
49ERS (1-0) AT SEAHAWKS (1-0), 8:30 p.m.
Outlook: “AAAWWWK!” shouts the Upset Bird. Picking a defending Super Bowl finalist might not even seem an upset to many of you, but consider that Seattle was 8-0 at home last season and won the most recent meeting with the Niners 42-13. I’m riding Tats Kaepernick. “This game could only be better if you put a Manning in it,” notes U-Bird.
The pick: 49ers, 27-24
JAGUARS (0-1) AT RAIDERS (0-1), 4:25 p.m.
Outlook: I’d call this a game only a mother would love, but I understand most players’ moms won’t be watching. Chad Henne starts at QB for Jax because Blaine Gabbert is beset by both a lack of talent and 15 stitches in his hand. This is like upgrading your meal from Spam to liverwurst. I have little faith in Terrelle Pryor or Oakland, either, but the Jaguars are the worst team in NFL until you hear otherwise.
The pick: Raiders, 20-13
RAMS (1-0) AT FALCONS (0-1), 1 p.m.
Outlook: This game involves the top three overall picks of the 2008 draft in Jake Long, Chris Long and Matt Ryan. One of them will be on the winning team. Also notable, Steven Jackson will face his longtime former team. Give me Birds but STL to keep it close.
The pick: Falcons, 24-20
PANTHERS (0-1) AT BILLS (0-1), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Upset. Liking the home ‘dog here, in the assumption Buffs will give the same effort that nearly stunned New England a week ago. Carolina seldom a good road team, and E.J. Manual shows some good signs. Venue pick.
The pick: Bills, 19-16
VIKINGS (0-1) AT BEARS (1-0), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Chitown has won six of past seven in this divisional grudge and seems an easy choice, but don’t discount Minny. Adrian Peterson has averaged 148.1 yards in his past seven division games, and Jay Cutler’s propensity for chaos still exists. Like Purples getting almost a touchdown.
The pick: Bears, 24-20
REDSKINS (0-1) AT PACKERS (0-1), 1 p.m.
Outlook: This has the potential to be a big, interesting matchup if you think Robert Griffin III and the (offensively Unmentionable Nicknames) have it in them to bounce back from their Monday night fizzle. The thing is, Pack is in bounceback mode, too. Washers stay close, but Aaron Rodgers is on a 19-1 run at Lambeau.
The pick: Packers, 31-24
COWBOYS (1-0) AT CHIEFS (1-0), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Betting line might seem odd but isn’t. Cowboys face letdown after prime-time beating Giants, and Chiefs get home-opening goose. Plus, Andy Reid was 17-12 vs. Dallas with Philly, which counts. So I get the line. I just hunch the ‘Boys are going to turn it upside down. Upset.
The pick: Cowboys, 28-23
BROWNS (0-1) AT RAVENS (0-1), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Ravens have won 10 in a row in this lopsided series, and the Super Bowl champs will be amped for this home opener after being denied the home field by the Orioles last week in that embarrassing show against Denver. Axiom: A team that can’t beat Miami at home can’t win in Baltimore.
The pick: Ravens, 38-13
TITANS (1-0) AT TEXANS (1-0), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Titans stunningly won in Pittsburgh last week and Houston needed big rally to escape San Diego, but expect a return to normalcy here. That means Texans looking real good and Tenners not. Aside to Gary Kubiak: Run Arian Foster a lot and keep him happy. He’s on my fantasy team.
The pick: Texans, 27-16
CHARGERS (0-1) AT EAGLES (1-0), 1 p.m.
Outlook: Are we sold on Chip Kelly and that blur-speed Birds offense? Do we trust Michael Vick? I’m not sure what to make of Philly yet, and Diego seems unpredictable, so this is a game I’d avoid. I do like Eagles at home but also give Bolts an upset shot in what could be Week 2′s biggest shootout.
The pick: Eagles, 34-28
DOLPHINS (1-0) AT COLTS (1-0), 1 p.m.
Outlook: These are two teams that figure to be in the AFC wild-card hunt so this result could be big down the road. By the way, the Miami-market 18.1 TV rating for last week’s opener in Cleveland , though modest, marked a 20 percent spike over a year earlier. There is fragile optimism/excitement for this Dolphins season, and a 2-0 start would solidify it. With Falcons/Saints/Ravens on deck, a 2-0 start looks like just what this season needs, too. So: Upset.
The pick: Dolphins, 24-23
LIONS (1-0) AT CARDINALS (0-1), 4:05 p.m.
Outlook: Has new Detroit Mayor Reggie Bush gotten the city out of hock yet? I’m just asking. Tend to like the home team in a near-pick-’em game, although Cacti are riskier than most. But ‘Zona has won four in a row in series — including last year; plus I’m counting on Ndamukong Suh to do something else stupid. Upset!
The pick: Cardinals, 23-21
SAINTS (1-0) AT BUCCANEERS (0-1), 4:05 p.m.
Outlook: Drew Brees has rolled six consecutive 300s and has had 10 touchdowns passes in a 3-0 run in this Buccaneers series. But Saints won’t match the intensity they had beating Atlanta, and T-Bay should be fighting mad after giving away a win against Jets. Still like N’Awlins, but running with ‘dogs on that dangling half-point.
The Pick: Saints, 27-24
STEELERS (0-1) AT BENGALS (0-1), 8:30 p.m.
Outlook: There wasn’t a bigger Week 1 surprise than Pittsburgh losing at home to Titans. Now, this Monday nighter demands that we adjust the division paradigm to accept that the Steelers are clearly inferior to a Cincy club they once dominated. And into their Iron City beer they wept, Terribble Towels to wipe their tears. Whoa now. I said the Bengals are clearly better, but not a LOT better. As James Harrison switches sides in this series, Pitt has still won 10 of past 11 in Cincy, and should give ‘Gals all they handle here.
The pick: Bengals, 21-20
– Greg Cote, The Miami Herald