No matter what, any Colts-Redskins game within the next decade means endless reminders about how Indianapolis got another no. 1 overall draft pick right while the career of the quarterback selected with the next pick has been mostly disappointing. Did the Colts really have any doubt about selecting Andrew Luck first in the 2012 Draft? Probably not, though they made a few rumblings of considering RGIII around that time, though the vast majority of people thought those were just another pre-draft smokescreen. Either way, Indianapolis had two awesome quarterbacks fall into their laps in the span of 15 years and get to have their executives hailed as geniuses for reaping the benefits.
I’m not sure whether the fact that Colt McCoy is starting in RGIII’s place will lessen or increase those incessant comparisons. The broadcast is bound to be full of sideline shots of Robert Griffin III with overlaid graphics featuring his career stats vs. those of Luck. McCoy has been efficient, if unspectacular, in his two appearances this season. Ultimately, the change hinges on whether Washington’s crappy defense can somehow limit the NFL’s top-rated offense enough that McCoy can adequately game-manage the ‘Skins to victory. All of that sounds incredibly unlikely, especially on the road. And that’s probably for the best, lest the Cult of Colt become a thing that rivals how much Redskins fans were loving Kirk Coustins earlier this season.
A meeting of the Browns and the Bills is typically one of the most tragicomic parts of any NFL schedule, right up there with a Titans-Jaguars prime time game (just three weeks away!). The idea of it is sure to be mocked more than the game itself is ignored. But not this year! Okay, the game will still be ridiculed, but it will also be taken kind of seriously, since both Cleveland and Buffalo are in the rare position of hanging around the the AFC playoff picture at the end of November.
The rest of a pretty packed slate looks mostly forgettable on paper aside from Chargers-Ravens and Saints-Steelers. If Pittsburgh already lost at home to Tampa, they’re susceptible to dropping one to New Orleans. C’mon, Steelers, everyone is counting on you to help ensure the NFC South champ finishes with at least 10 loss. Granted, the Saints playing on the road hasn’t been a pretty thing in recent years, but never discount the Steelers’ ability to play down to opponents.
Finally, here’s hoping Zach Mettenberger can be Aaron Rodgers for a day just so J.J. Watt can feel really stupid for calling someone out for taking selfies.
Your early game slate, as rated by KSK’s not-at-all subjective, rigorously scientificated five-star system:
San Diego at Baltimore ***
Cleveland at Buffalo ***
Tennessee at Houston **
Washington at Indianapolis **
New York Giants at Jacksonville *
Carolina at Minnesota **
New Orleans at Pittsburgh ***
Oakland at St. Louis *
Cincinnati at Tampa Bay **