This is the time of year when we can start seeing trends and such emerge. One week of data doesn't tell us a lot, and even two weeks doesn't count for all that much. But once we have three weeks in the books, you can begin to see how things might come together down the road. A 3-0 player has an excellent chance of making the playoffs, while an 0-3 player is nearly dead in the water. As it happens, there are nine players trying to make it to that perfect record and another nine who are trying to avoid a disastrous start this week. Some of those players are competing in this week's divisional matches, all of which take place in the NFC:
We begin in the NFC North where Ignats is looking to keep his unbeaten streak going. And while he's been picking them very well lately, Ignats is going to have to bring his A-game here against Pigskin Palookas. These two have met twice each year since 2008, and it's been an overall one-sided contest. Pigskin Palookas has an over 11-4 record over Ignats, and Ignats hasn't picked up a win here since 2013.
It's early in the season, but this is already shaping up to be a huge contest in the NFC East (a brutally competitive division this season, containing three of the top-five players in the Power Rankings). We have the division-leading Hyena taking on Jeff B, who is ranked second about as closely as he could be. They're both coming into this at 2-0, so the winner here is going to undefeated, have a 2-0 divisional record, and be solidly positioned atop the division.
The NFC West-leading Fighting Sporks will be looking to keep a six-match winning streak going by coming out on top in his first meeting with rookie Eighteen. And while Fighting Sporks may be defending champ, he'll be well-served not to look past this week. Eighteen can keep an important fact in mind -- Fighting Sporks has only put up three wins in his ten matches against rookie players over the past five seasons (how's that for top-level stat generation??).
Finally, we have an NFC South contest where the 2-0 Beep Bops looks to keep things rolling by facing off against the 0-2 Alabama Slammers, who needs to be looking at this one as a "must-win". Both players are looking to make their first serious mark on the league, and Beep Bops is certainly looking like this could be the year he does it. One thing Alabama Slammers can look at as a positive going in to this one -- even though he's only 1-3 against Beep Bops, that victory was in their last matchup. Will he be able to make it two-in-a-row and possibly save his season?
All right, that'll do it for this week's early preview. Please make sure you have your Thursday Night Football pick submitted by noon on Thursday. Have a great week all!
If you haven't already done so, please make sure your picks for the rest of the week are in by Saturday evening. I can't guarantee when they'll be posted, but we'll make every effort to get everything updated before kickoff.
Thanks for everyone's patience and well-wishes during this time.
That should about do it for this week's preview. Once again, I have no idea when updates will be made next, but we'll get things to you as soon as we can. So for now, check the pick chart, good luck to you, and enjoy the games everyone!
That still leaves seven matches left to be decided by Monday Night Football -- check back on Tuesday to see how everything shakes out.