Feeling lucky seven times over as NFL season begins

Football fans, we know you are in your glory right now.

The NFL season has begun with Thursday’s thrilling but poorly played Eagles win over Atlanta. College football already got underway with its first big weekend and first Nick Saban controvery.

But, we’re about to add to your euphoria. With the first weekend of the regular season NFL, we bring you the return after a year off of the Lucky Seven Pro Picks.

For those who have forgotten, we just take seven games – usually the Patriots, then two other AFC games, two NFC games, two interconference games. You get the gist.

Anyway, does Tom Brady hate Bill Belichick? Does Bill Belichick hate Tom Brady? Is Belichick made at owner Robert Kraft?

Who cares?

The games are about to begin, and the question is whether Bill O’Brien and his staff can finally pull off a win over Belichick and Brady. They havent in their regular season/playoff meetings which seem to occur annually. Are they due?

O’Brien doesn’t buy the theory Brady has gone soft.

“He was the MVP last year, you know what I mean?” he said this week. “… Always thinking about football and how to get the edgeand that’s why he’s the player his is, has had the career he’s had and that’s why he’s still playing.”

Brady’s still playing, and we’re still picking, so here we go. Remember, the first few weeks of an NFL season are when the strange results always occur:

PATRIOTS 24, TEXANS 21

Remember, the preseason, the roster, etc. all that means nothing. The Patriots can score their points as long as Brady is the QB. The key is what can the Patriot defense do when Deshaun Watson starts running around? Remember, defense is why they lost last year’s opener to the Chiefs. And defense is why they lost the Super Bowl. But until O’Brien’s Texans prove they can beat New England, we’ll go Brady.

TITANS 17, DOLPHINS 16

Not too impressed with Tennessee, but their defense should be fine under first year head coach Mike Vrabel, and the corner trio of Logan Ryan, old friend Malcolm Butler, and Adoree’ Jackson. That could make life tough for Fish QB Ryan Tannehill on his return.

STEELERS 31, BROWNS 17

This might be a game for awhile. But really, can someone tell steelers back Le’Veon Bell to wake up? He’s costing himself $14.5 million, and he’s a running back who isn’t getting any younger.

NINERS 24, VIKINGS 17

Before the game, SF’s Jimmy Garoppolo and Minny’s Kirk Cousins are going to meet at midfield and compare paychecks. This should’ve been the Sunday Night Game, not Packers-Bears. True, the Niners lost pricey running back Jerick McKinnon to a torn ACL, but they’ve got Jimmy G, right? Just like we say about the Patriots and Brady.

PACKERS 27, BEARS 13

Well, Da Bears of Nashua’s Ted Phillips, with their nice shiny new toy Khalil Mack, will be a very good defensive team, but can they possibly score enough points to beat mega millionaire Aaron Rodgers? In Lambeau? Doubt it. But Da Bears will be a better team than last year. But remember, we’ve picked Green Bay to get the the Super Bowl, as the recent NFC trend has been a team that’s missed the playoffs the previous year wins the conference.

LIONS 23, JETS 21

We believe in Sam Darnold. Matt Patricia’s defense will try to confuse the heck out of him, and may do so for a time. But this Lions team just doesn’t seem to be that good,although it may finally have a running game to help QB Matt Stafford shoulder the load. Strictly a home team pick in Monday Night Game 1.

RAMS 31, RAIDERS 23

Monday Night Game 2, and how suddenly out of touch does Raiders new/old coach Jon Gruden seem? The Rams and second year coach Sean McVay are a trendy Super Bowl pick, but second year head coaches lately rarely have as good a Year 2 after a surprisingly good Year 1. Just ask former Giants coach Ben McAdoo. But we can see a few Jared Goff-to-Brandin Cooks TDs burning Oakland. Yeah, Jon. This guy.

LAST WEEK: 0-0

Tom King can be reached at 594-1251 or tking@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow King on Twitter (@Telegraph_TomK).

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