NFL Week One Expert Predictions

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We here at SideLion Report are always excited to compete. That’s why during the 2015 NFL season we will be giving our readers our weekly picks all year long as we compete with each other to see who is the ultimate NFL game predictor. Winner gets a trophy from the thrift shop, and bragging rights. Here is this years panel: Mike PaytonNate Williams, Kent Lee Platte, Derek Mack, Nick Pursel, Darin Ackerman, Mark DeGain, Alex Stahl,  ESPN 96.1’s Sean Baligian, MLive’s Kyle Meinke and Real GM’s Jeff Risdon.

Let’s jump right into it.

Steelers at Patriots

Deflategate appears to over, at least we hope it is. Tom Brady will be in the lineup for the Patriots as they take on the Steelers in Foxborro. The Steelers have shown in the preseason that their offense could be high powered in 2015, their defense is whole other story as they ranked 29th in total defense during the preseason. The Patriots should have no problem working the over at home.


Patriots: Payton, Williams, Stahl, Platte, Mack, Pursel, Ackerman, DeGain, Baligian, Meinke, Risdon

Nov 16, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (99) waves to fans after beating the Cleveland Browns 23-7 at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ron Schwane-USA TODAY Sports

Chiefs at Texans

It’s hard to bet against the Texans and the best defensive player in the NFL in J.J. Watt. But I’m going to do it anyways. The Texans are proof that one outstanding player doesn’t make a team great. The Texans defense ranked 16th in 2014 and their offense wasn’t any higher. Through the preseason the Texans ranked 17th in defense and 19th in offense. The Chiefs quietly had one heck of a preseason.

Cheifs: Payton, Mack, DeGain, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian,

Texans: Stahl, Williams, Risdon, Meinke

Colts at Bills

Many have Andrew Luck and the Colts as their Super Bowl pick in 2015. You’d be hard pressed not to agree with them. The Colts have been a consistent offensive power house since Luck was drafted in 2012. The Bills however are one stout defense. With Marcel Dareus and company, the Bills ay have a top ten defense in 2015. Still, the Colts have to be your pick here.

Colts: Payton, Mack, Stahl, DeGain, Williams, Pursel, Baligian, Meinke, 

Bills: Platte, Risdon,

Panthers at Jaguars

Everyone will call me crazy here, but I’m going with Jacksonville in this one. Blake Bortles and company have looked suprisingly good thus far in 2015. Their offense ranked 14th in the NFL during the preseason while their defense ranked 25th. Wait that’s not that good. Carolina is the easy favorite here. Still I can’t fight this hunch.

Panthers: Mack, Stahl, DeGain, Pursel, Ackerman, Baligan, Meinke

Jaguars: Payton, Williams, Risdon

Browns at Jets

Welcome to the hardest game to call on the whole slate. On one hand the Jets have looked rough all preseason and will likely be a rebuilding team in 2015, on the other, the Browns have looked just the same. Of the many questions surrounding these two teams, Who is the starting quarterback? It’s almost as if these teams are playing themselves.

Browns: Payton, Stahl, DeGain, Platte, Baligian, Risdon, Meinke

Jets: Mack, Williams, Pursel, Ackerman,

Jan 18, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman (25) gestures against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks defeated the Packers 28-22 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Seahawks vs Rams

This game is pretty easy to figure out. The Seahawks should have no problem dispatching the 227th ranked defense of the preseason. For Lions fans it should be interesting to see what Nick Fairley does.

Seahawks: Payton, Stahl, DeGain, Williams, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon, Meinke

Rams: Mack

Dolphins at Redskins

The Redskins are a mess and things aren’t looking any better as the weeks go by. The Redskins will be starting former Michigan State quarterback (Also my brother would be upset if I didn’t include the fact that he sacked this guy in high school) Kirk Cousins. The Dolphins defense definitely didn’t show up as advertised in the preseason ranking 14th in total defense. But the Dolphins should have no problem taking care of business in week one.

Dolphins: Payton, Stahl, DeGain, Williams, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon, Meinke


Saints at Cardinals

Drew Brees and the Saints will be looking to rebound after a rough 2014. The Cardinals are out to produce simialar results to their previous season but of course hope to keep their quarterbacks healthy all season. The Saints have to have the slight edge here due to their offense 3rd ranked offense.

Saints: Payton, 

Cardinals: Mack, Stahl, DeGain, Williams, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon, Meinke

Ravens at Broncos

Jan 11, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) throws a pass in the fourth quarter against the Indianapolis Colts in the 2014 AFC Divisional playoff football game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Colts defeated the Broncos 24-13. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Ravens have looked quiet but their offense is in the top ten and the Broncos are literally right behind them with the 11th ranked offense. This could very well be a shootout.

Ravens: Payton, Mack, DeGain, Risdon

Broncos: Stahl, Williams, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Meinke

Rest of the slate

May 1, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3), the number one overall draft pick, poses with general manager Jason Licht and head coach Lovie Smith for a photo during a press conference at One Buc Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Bengals at Raiders

Bengals: Payton, Stahl, Williams, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon

Raiders: Mack, DeGain, Meinke

Titans at Buccaneers

Titans: Payton, Stahl, Platte,

Bucs: Mack, DeGain, Williams, Pursel, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon, Meinke

Giants at Cowboys

Giants:  Payton, DeGain, 

Cowboys: Mack, Stahl, Pursel, Platte, Ackeran, Baligian, Risdon, Williams, Meinke

Aug 29, 2015; Green Bay, WI, USA; Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford (7) warms up before game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles at Falcons

Eagles: Payton, Mack, Stahl, DeGain, Pursel, Platte, Ackerman, Baligian, Risdon, Williams, Meinke


Now let’s check in with the NFC North for our first games of the week.

Next: Games of the week