The LA Rams are in the midst of a four-game winning streak and are winners in nine of the team’s last ten games. How can that be, with the team only now facing their first opponent of the 2022 NFL season, the formidable Buffalo Bills? Well, winning streaks (and losing streaks for that matter) cross over from one season to the next.
Which NFL team will continue their winning streak was a question posed by a recent Tweet by Fox Sports. So let’s try to answer that question here:
But this one is with a bit of a twist. The question addresses the winning streak of Week 1, and reflects the following:
Kansas City Chiefs – 7 consecutive Week 1 wins
LA Rams – 5 consecutive Week 1 wins
LV Raiders, LA Chargers, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks – 3 consecutive Week 1 wins
Kansas City Chiefs (-6.0) at Arizona Cardinals
The Kansas City Chiefs travel to face the Arizona Cardinals, a very tough place to play in the desert heat, and the 100-degree midday heat forecast for game day is going to sizzle. The Cardinals have jumped out to great starts in the past two seasons, only to squander their early success by melting down late in the season.
The Chiefs hope that WR Juju Smith-Schuster can compensate for the loss of WR Tyreek Hill. Individually, he won’t. But that Chiefs offense also has RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire and TE Travis Kelce. The Cardinals counter with RB James Conner, WR Marquise Brown, and a questionable tight end Zach Ertz. I’m not impressed with how Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray ended the 2021 NFL season, so in close games, I expect good fortune to fall the other way. A close one, due to the unbearable heat.
New Orleans Saints (-5.5) at Atlanta Falcons
The New Orleans Saints are predicted to be better this season, much of that optimism planted in the belief that the best of quarterback Jameis Winston will happen this year. But the track record of Saints QB Winston is, live by the sword, die by the sword. Yes, he threw for over 5000 yards and 33 touchdowns for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020. But he also chucked 30 interceptions. That just won’t cut it against the top NFL secondaries.
It should be enough against the rebuilding Atlanta Falcons, however.
Denver Broncos (-6.5) at Seattle Seahawks
The NFL wanted to schedule the homecoming of former Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson early in the season because NFL executives feared that after the Seahawks put up some early season stinkers, they won’t attract nearly the viewing audience worthy of a prime-time television spot.
It starts in Week 1
LV Raiders at LA Chargers (-3.5)
Two teams that had seriously improved in the offseason face off in week one, when the Raiders take on the Chargers. These two teams split in 2021, and there is plenty of reason to expect a similar outcome in 2022 as well.
The Raiders got better on offense, the Chargers got better on defense. Defense wins in Week 1
Buffalo Bills (-2.5) at LA Rams
Oddsmakers love the excitement and emotions that rule throughout the first weekend of NFL football. Why? Because odds are determined less by the understanding of teams, players, and coaches, and are determined more by preseason hype, NFL analysts’ subjective takes on teams, and an overall ‘feel good’ state among a team’s fanbase. Right now, that NFL feel-good is firmly wrapped around the Buffalo Bills
Well, temporarily at least.
The LA Rams play very well as home dogs. The LA Rams play very well in season openers. For all the hoopla and bravado surrounding the Buffalo Bills, their fortune lies in beating AFC East teams, and their 5-1 record last season will very like end up 6-0 this season. The Bills will win plenty of games this season. This just isn’t one of them.
So whose winning streaks will continue in Week 1? The Chiefs, Saints, Chargers, and Rams are my predictions. Let’s see how the first week of NFL action plays out.