Quick Pick: Baltimore at Pittsburgh (Week Four; 2015)

I really like this match-up, because it has a lot of variables to it. More so than many match-ups this week. Pittsburgh is without starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Baltimore is without a win this season. And Terrell Suggs. Baltimore and Pittsburgh games are usually defensive battles, but neither team’s defense looks quite as good as its offense. However, Pittsburgh’s offense is going to rely on Michael Vick at quarterback. Remember Michael Vick? I’m sure you do. If not for his sports accolades, then certainly for his off-the-field accolades. Everyone likes to remind me of it on every article concerning him. Over and over and over and over and over and—

I initially wanted to pick Baltimore for this game. They’re typically good at stealing wins from Pittsburgh and they aren’t starting Michael Vick at quarterback. Not to mention, Pittsburgh’s without Ryan Shazier, one of their best defensive players. However, with all the weapons that Michael Vick has to his arsenal, with the likes of Antonio Brown, Heath Miller, and Le’Veon Bell, on top of a solid offensive line, it’s hard to think they won’t score many points in this game. Michael Vick himself is a bit of a weapon with his speed. That could also be his weakness, too, as he tends to run it a little too much sometimes. Oh, and he fumbles quite often, too. I just don’t trust Michael Vick.

Baltimore would be the safe pick here, as they have a proven starter at quarterback who has a history of overcoming expectations, as Pittsburgh does not. In terms of defense, though, I feel Pittsburgh is the stronger case, even without Shazier. They’re toughest challenge will be quelling Steve Smith, who’s been hot lately. And Baltimore? I don’t even know what to make of their defense. It held up strong against Denver in Week One. Since then, 28 points or more each game.

Peyton proved me wrong two weeks ago. Let’s see if Mike can do the same.

Winner: Pittsburgh

Quick Pick: Pittsburgh at New England (Week One; 2015)

Twenty minutes before the kickoff to the 2015 NFL season, a thought comes to my mind:

“Dude, I should blog my picks.”

So, I’m going to do just that. I kinda wish I had thought to do this earlier, so that I could have time to think about every match-up this week carefully before deciding. So, since the beginning of the season draws near, I decided I’m going to just dedicate this quick note to the game going on tonight, and then make another note elaborating my picks for the rest of the games going on on Sunday.

The Steelers are without Maurkice Pouncey, Martavis Bryant, and Le’veon Bell tonight—three offensive starters that will be missed. However, what they still have in Antonio Brown, Heath Miller, and the rest of the offensive line shouldn’t make those losses all too significant. Tom Brady didn’t look good at all in the preseason (note he didn’t have most of his offensive starters with him) and I think the entire ordeal with DeflateGate has messed with his mojo tremendously. I don’t think the Patriots are the underdogs in this match-up, but I think with all that’s happened throughout the offseason, their chances seem more slim than usual. On the contrary, the Patriots could also use everything against them as motivation to quiet their doubters, similar to how they trampled the competition during the 2007 season.

I also have a funny feeling that this won’t be a close game. Either team could get blown out, and I think the chances are good that it will happen. Either Tom Brady will let out his pent-up frustration and anger on the Steelers’ secondary or Ben Roethlisberger will have one of his miraculous six-touchdown games.

It’ll be interesting to see how the Patriots’ secondary holds up without Darelle Revis this season, and how they fare against Antonio Brown. The same can be said about the Steelers’ secondary, with Cortez Allen’s inconsistent play and the retiring of Troy Polamalu and Ike Taylor in the offseason. Both of these teams look very similar in structure. That’s also what makes it so hard to doubt either team. I have a good feeling about the Steelers, though. Let’s see if my “good feelings” can translate to more correct picks than not.

Winner: Pittsburgh Steelers.