NFL predictions always amuse me, in part because so few people are any good at them. For example, in Week One, Bill Simmons was 6-10. On it's own, not a big deal. But he got beat by his wife, who went 8-8.
Peter King, coffee-drinker and Kissing Suzy Kolber-lover extraordinnaire, went 9-7. But he does it with such verve, not only picking the winner, but also the final score, some stats, and the major play(s). But I don't think he ever gets called on his predictions, which is odd given how much time seems put into them. So here's what I'm going to do: I'm going to show which games PK got wrong, then predict what he did after learning how wrong his pick was.
New Orleans 19, Cleveland 14
PK's pick: Cleveland 20, New Orleans 17. King writes, " It's not an ideal debut for Reggie Bush, losing his opener and getting pelted with milkbones at the same time, but I have a feeling he'd better get used to it -- at least the losing part."
Bush actually produces over 140 total yards. King commences to chant, "He's still overrated," as the Starbucks employees sweeping up call the regional manager for advice on getting him out of the place.
Baltimore 27, Tampa Bay 0
PK's pick: Tampa Bay 16, Baltimore 10. King writes, "Simeon Rice, meet Steve McNair. Three times. The Ravens had better learn how to protect McNair or he'll never last 16 games."
McNair gets sacked only once and leads the Ravens to victory and notches a 94.8 quarterback rating. King calls Jon Gruden and offers Mary Beth King's services for the rest of the season.
St. Louis 18, Denver 10
PK's pick: Denver 34, St. Louis 20. King writes, "Jake Plummer laughs at the people trying to give away his job. After a series of those chuckles, he strafes the Rams for 330 yards. Oh, and the Denver running-back job? Looks like Mike Bell's. He's one of the day's rushing leaders, with 132 yards."
Plummer turns the ball over four times and, um, strafes the Rams for 138 yards. He also gets sacked four times as Jay Cutler giggles mightily behind his clipboard. Also, Tatum Bell outrushes Mike Bell by 45 yards. After the game, King asks Bob Costas for a hug. Costas politely turns him down and stands on the other side of Chris Collinsworth from PK.
Seattle 9, Detroit 6
PK's pick: Detroit 24, Seattle 20. King writes, "After this game, no one at Ford Field boos president Matt Millen. They're too busy cheering new coach Rod Marinelli and his offensive genius, Mike Martz."
After the game, King consoles offensive genius Mike Martz by driving them both naked to Wendy's.
NY Jets 23, Tennessee 16
PK's pick: Tennessee 20, NY Jets 17. King writes, "Kerry Collins looks across the field and says: Where am I? Back in New York? With only two weeks of his nose in the playbook, Collins outduels old pal Chad Pennington and leads the Titans to two fourth-quarter touchdowns. The Cardiac Titans win their opener."
Pennington's line: 24/33, 319 yds, 2 TD, 0 INT. Game-winning drive in the fourth quarter. Collins' line: 17/38, 223 yds, 0 TD, 2 INT. Unfortunately, King had no way of knowing Tennessee had signed Collins just two weeks before the season started. After the game, he calls Dr. Z and leaves a long, rambling message about the virtues of lattes and the shortcomings of wine and Z sits in his easy chair smacking his forehead.
Jacksonville 24, Dallas 17
PK's pick: Dallas 21, Jacksonville 10. King writes, "After the game, Byron Leftwich shakes the cobwebs out after a seven-sack afternoon. "I never knew where they were coming from," he says. "Seems like two guys were coming free every time I dropped back to pass." That, friends, is the 2006 Dallas defense."
In reality, Leftwich gets sacked once. King drives to Leftwich's house and tries to tackle Leftwich as he walks from his driveway to the front door, but King misses and lands in the shrubs. That, friends, is Peter King.
Update, 9/13, 2:00. Check the comments; apparently, I miscounted on Simmons and his wife. Even with the numbers in front of me, I screw up. At least King is just guessing.