2009 NFL Hall of Fame Game Preview and Pick
Buffalo Bills +3 vs. Tennessee Titans -3 from Canton, Ohio
By Wilson of Predictem.com
Date: August 9, 2009
Stadium: Fawcett Stadium (next door to the HOF)
2008 Buffalo Bills Record: 7-9 (4th in AFC East) ATS 7-9, O/U 8-8
2008 Tennessee Titans Record: 13-3 (1st in AFC South) ATS 12-4, O/U 7-8
2010 Superbowl Odds: Tennessee 10/1, Buffalo 30/1
Lets face it; this game is really nothing more than a bonus for both teams involved. Why? Well, they get five preseason games instead of four to work out all of the kinks. As a coach on either side Im ecstatic because now I have an entire whole game to pick and pull guys from every position and find out who can produce and who can follow directions. This first game will especially speak volumes for the youngsters straight out of the draft.
The Buffalo Bills come into this preseasons HOF game in dire need of a makeover. The Bills added the notorious Terrell Owens to their roster in an attempt to bring a primetime player who can make an instant impact albeit positive- they hope!
Bills head coach Dick Jauron can only anticipate great things this season because anything else will be a complete nightmare added onto a team that is already in the dark. Dark, as in they havent seen the bright lights of the playoffs for ten years. Buffalo QB Trent Edwards is most definitely on the chopping block in 2009. Edwards was a fan favorite early in 2008 but quickly lost his edge by performing poorly from mid-season through the rest of the year. He was never the same guy after getting smashed by Cardinals DB Adrian Wilson in week five when he suffered a concussion. Edwards may not play much in the HOF game but when he is on the field preseason or regular season he will be making a case for his job.
The Bills will experiment with their running game behind Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson. Lynch can be a Pro-Bowl back at times but he also tends to not see every option due to his lower the boom running style.
If the crowd at Fawcett stadium thinks they have a chance to see Terrell Owens they might want to rethink. Owens, like other starting WR Lee Evans, will probably not even see a down. But you never know, this is a chance for Buffalo to start out on a positive note with some new blood. After all, it is the Hall of Fame Game, and what better venue to let the league know that youre back on track.
The Tennessee Titans are on the opposite side of the spectrum than the Bills. The Titans were 13-3 last season and took first place in the AFC South. They have resolved the QB issue as Kerry Collins has done nothing but step up and be the man after Vince Young fizzled out early in his third season. Coach Fisher does not waste time with drama and so far hes riding this train all the way to a certain third consecutive playoff run.
Behind Collins leadership and ability to run the offense, the Titans have 2nd year sensational running back, Chris Johnson as their No. 1 weapon of choice. Johnson had 251 carries last season and 43 catches. He will be even stronger this season despite sharing carries with a slimmed down LenDale White.
WR Nate Washington arrives from Pittsburgh to help out the air attack along with Justin Gage and first round draft pick Kenny Britt.
Defensively, the Titans will be led by DE Kyle Vanden Bosch. Bosch is tough and does not slow down on any plays. He is surrounded by good company in DE Jevon Kearse, DT Tony Brown, and DT Jason Jones.
The Titans clearly have a lot of expectations in 2009 but they are not as desperate as the Bills. The Bills are on life support and they need to upgrade quickly or they will lose their fan-base as well as the head coach which is usually the case for consistent losing seasons.
Please enjoy the HOF game and maybe some of the players on the Bills or Titans rosters will make it to the hall one day.
Our Pick: Buffalo +3. Tennessee has many of their starters already established. Buffalo does not. Look for max. effort out of Bills players and a straight up win.
Luck to ya.
The NFL Hall Of Fame in Canton, Ohio was founded in 1920, and there have been more than 20,000 players but only a handful of them have made the elite status as an NFL Hall of Famer. This years inductees are incredible athletes who certainly made watching football on Sundays a must for any true fan. The 2009 HOF inductees include:
Bob Hayes – (Bullet Bob Dallas Cowboys 1965-74, and San Francisco 49ers 1975). Hayes credited by some as the player who caused defenses to first develop the bump and run in order to slow down the lightning quick Hayes.
Randall McDaniel – (Minnesota Vikings 1988-99, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2000-01) McDaniel was selected to play in a record 12 consecutive Pro Bowls.
Derrick Thomas – (1989-99 Kansas City Chiefs) Thomas was selected defensive rookie of the year in 1989 when he led his team with 20 sacks. He played at an All-Pro level for his entire career.
Bruce Smith – (1985-99 Buffalo Bills, and 2000-03 Washington Redskins) Smith also earned defensive player of the year six times including his rookie season.
Rod Woodson – (Pittsburgh Steelers 1987-96, San Francisco 49ers 1997, Baltimore Ravens 1998-2001, Oakland Raiders 2002-03) Woodson was a do it all guy in college at Purdue but turned into one the best CBs in NFL history after joining the Steelers.