Interesting weekend for this division week 1. The Seahawks are the only team to lose, and everyone says it's because Kam Chancellor isn't there (that's wrong and I'll adress that later). The Cardinals won a game I picked them to lose, but are the Saints that good? Are the Cardinals the new favorite? The Rams dominanted Seattle for most the game, but still only won by 3, so what do we make of the Rams? The 49ers won a game most analyst had them losing, who knew there's still some life left out in the bay?
I'm not one to read to much into one loss, and I still find Seattle the team to beat, but there are some issues. Let's start with the QB. First of all the interception was terrible, he got pressured, panicked and threw it to Marshawn hoping skittles would rain and Lynch would make a play, but the corner jumped the route. That's not even the worse thing, I've talked about it before but Russell gained some weight, he did. He looked slower. On one red zone play he had a seam to run, but didn't, my best friend (a diehard Seahawks) said "last year he scores a TD, he's not as fit." So, now, the Seahawks have a QB who might be eating to many "goodies" behind an oline with only 2 guys who played oline in college, bad recipe. Unless you want your recipe to lead to "Momma Lynch" reminding everyone she's from Oakland, then it's the best recipe.
As for the defense, they need to pay Kam. Not because Dion Bailey fell down, but because the Rams 3rd string RB, and their TE had good games. Tony Dungy voted Bobby Wagner for MVP (over JJ Watt, that's stupid) because when he came back the Seattle defense played at a better level. You know what else happened then? Kam got healthy. Was Kam being healthy a bigger part of that or Wagner's return? We'll soon find out, if Kam continues his hold out. There's been a few LB's who lifted their defenses, let's see if Wagner has that without Kam.
Carson Palmer was a stud in this game. He threw 3 TD's, and zero interceptions, he also wasn't sacked. The not being sacked at all has more to do with the Saints defense being softer than a Drake song. The thing you have to admire about the Cardinals is Bruce Arians has them believing they can win the Super Bowl. They beleive, I don't. They lost their defensive coordinator, and their Oline (like the rest of the division) is shakey. They play the Bears next week, and should win, the following week they host the 49ers, a loss in either of those tells us that Arizona at best is a 10 win team. But 10 wins might win the division this year, it's an interesting few weeks for the Red Birds.
Well, they beat Seattle at home. Russell Wilson for all the talk about his home record is now 1-3 in St. Louis, Kap is 1-2 there. The Rams are good against this division and even better at home. The Rams built a team around stopping the run games of Seattle and San Francisco, and if they can do that, they'll be competitive. But, they won't be too competitive because there coach is Jeff Fisher, and their QB is Nick Foles. Jeff Fisher hasn't won a playoff game since the AFC championship that led to his heart breaking Super Bowl loss. Nick Foles will fold.
Kap sucks. They had way too many retirements. They cut Aldon Smith. The Oline sucks. They'll start 0-8. They'll be lucky to win 5 games. Did I miss any narratives? I'm sure I did. Even some 49ers fans expected to lose Monday. Not knowing who the players are doesn't mean there's not talent. I can write about Carlos Hyde, but I won't. I could write about the return of Bowman but I won't. I could write about Kap but I won't. One thing that jumped out at me on the offense was the game plan. Torrey Smith on my had one catch, but he went deep a fair amount clearing out intermediate routes for the TE's. Vernon Davis still frustrated 49ers fans, but overall the TE unit played well, receiving and run blocking.
On defense, I bet a lot of people are wondering where Brock and Acker, the 49ers starting corners came from? They were both injured last year. Brock followed the Vikings top WR most plays, and played all over, he had a great game. Acker showed a desire to tackle in run support and dump offs, I really liked that. Also, a rookie most said was a mistake to pick early looked good in Pop Tart. (First name is to much to type). Overall this unit played well, and if that continues, the national media will change their opinion, and sing the praises of Trent Baalke. But it's only week 1, so who knows what will happen.
Overall the division has a mixed bag this week. The Rams and Cardinals play the Redskins and Bears respectively, a couple of not very good teams, Which means they should both be 2-0. A loss for either might be telling, might not, the game action tells more. As for the Seahawks and 49ers they play ghe Packers and Steelers, both away games. A win for either team would be a big early season boost, a loss hurts both teams, not sure who more. Although, a loss for either the Seahawks or 49ers isn't the end of the world, but it will make the media vultures try and sell doom. Can't wait until the dust settles Sunday night, and all the Facebook and Twitter experts tell us all what to think, I love football season.