So today, as Brian Dawkins officially retires as an Eagle, it will be an emotional day for anyone that has any connection with the Philadelphia Eagle’s Organization (past or present) wether it be Players, Coaches, Ownership, Fans, and the list continues. Brian Dawkins is a Legend…An Icon in the Philly Sports Realm. Being an Eagle’s fan for my whole life there have been many great players that have donned the Green! Wilbert Montgomery, Mike Quick, Ron Jaworski, Randall Cunningham, Reggie White, Jerome Brown, Clyde Simmons, Seth Joyner, Troy Vincent, Keith Byars, Keith Jackson, Ricky Waters, Donovan McNabb, Deuce Staley, Brian Westbrook, Hugh Douglas, Jeremiah Trotter, Terrell Owens, Michael Vick, Deshaun Jackson, LeSean McCoy, Trent Cole…the list could go on forever if you are a die-hard Eagle’s fan. Well…for me Brian Dawkins is my all time favorite Eagle notwithstanding Reggie White. Brian Dawkins is the epitome of the Philadelphia Sports History. He wore his heart on his sleeve 100 percent of the time and then some. He gave his heart and soul to this team and city. He played relentless defense at a position that has become more important every year as the Athletes are getting better and better…especially tight ends who the Safety is generally responsible for covering. When Brian would hit an opponent…there was no question wether he was in the play or not. I rank him right there when it comes to the hardest hitting safety’s in NFL history…right there with Andre Waters, Ronnie Lott, Darren Woodsen and Ed Reed. Brian is also known for his faith off of the field as he is truly a Godly Man. But when he is on the field of battle…there was no player of my time that brought the intensity, the tenacity, and the energy to the field. I can remember years ago when I would sit in the end zone and Dawkins would run onto the field and bring the crowd to an absolute frenzy!!! When this team let Brian Dawkins walk into free agency…I did not want to be a fan anymore. That’s how much this player meant to me…I have a Dawkins shrine in my basement. My sister even named her dog Dawkins. My buddy Kenny also named his dog Dawkins. I would be willing to bet many other Eagle’s fans named their pets after this absolute legend. Also known as WEAPON X…it will be so great to see his number retired in an Eagle’s uniform. I am sure there will be many tears shed as the ceremony takes place tonight in South Philly. What better team to be playing than the New York Giants! Brian…we all Love You and miss your presence on the field, and you will never be forgotten. Your hits galore…the time you crunched Crumpler in that NFC Championship. The hit on Vick in that same game, You raising the NFC Trophy high and proud…your blood sweat and tears in the 2004 Superbowl…countless memories. Brian…no one deserves this more than you. You will never be forgotten.
Ok…now that I got that off my chest…onto my picks.
1) New England @ Buffalo- The Patriots are favored by 3.5 points in this one. The Patriots are in danger of losing 3 in a row which has not happened since 2002! As good as Buffalo is this year…cannot see them beating Tom Brady and Company! Take the Patriots in this one with the points.
2) Carolina @ Falcons- The Falcons are favored by 7 in this one. Look for the Falcons to continue their winning streak, but the Panthers will cover the spread as these games are always close.
3) Minnesota @ Detroit- Detroit is favored by 4.5. The Vikings looked solid last week but look for the upstart offense of the Lions to wreak havoc in this game. Take the Lions with the points.
4) Titans @ Texans- Houston is favored by 11.5 and usually I would say this is a fair line but they are playing the Titans. The Titans have not been great but for some reason they always play the Texans tight. This is my upset of the week…Go with the Titans.
5) Chargers @ Chiefs- The Chiefs are favored at home but only by a point. The Chargers are playing much better so I’m taking them on the road.
6) San Francisco @ NY Jets- The Jets are favored at home by 4 but the 49ers will be hungry after being upset by the Vikings last week. Look for the Niners to win this one easily on the road against the Jets minus Durelle Revis.
7) Seattle @ St. Louis- The Rams are favored by 3 but I am taking the Seahawks on the road in this one. I agree that they lucked out in Green Bay and won on a horrible call…but one cannot deny that they played a very good Green Bay offense to the T! Seattle wins.
8) Bengals @ Jaguars- The Jags are only favored by 1.5 in this one but Cincinnati has been absolutely horrible on the road. Jacksonville has been playing much better. Look for Jones-Drew to tear up the Bengals poor run defense. Jaguars by a Touchdown.
9) Raiders @ Broncos- The Raiders are favored by a Touchdown on the road in Denver where they have owned the Broncos. However, Peyton Manning is still out to prove that Indy made a huge mistake letting Him go. The Broncos win this one by a field goal.
10) Dolphins @ Cardinals- The Dolphins are favored on the road by 4.5 against the Cardinals. Last year I would have said take Miami, but Arizona is turning a lot of heads. They have beat New England and Philly in the past 2 games. Look for the Cardinals to continue their win streak.
11) Saints @ Packers- The Saints are favored by 7.5. This game will be a shootout. I’m taking the Saints due to the law of averages. I cannot see a talented team such as the Saints starting 0-4. Saints win but the Packers cover.
12) Redskins @ Buccaneers- Washington is favored by 2 on the road. My money is on the Bucs with their surprise Defense.
13) Giants @ Eagles- The Eagles are favored by 2.5 @ home, which I think is a stretch. However, The Eagles will win this one and cover the points due to an emotional Brian Dawkins retirement ceremony that will give Home Field Advantage another Meaning!
14) Bears @ Cowboys- Monday night madness in Dallas. Dallas is the better team but I’m taking the Bears on the road and to improve their Monday Night Record.
Start Ems/Sit Ems
QB- Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning.
RB- Maurice Jones Drew, Matt Forte, Arian Foster
WR- Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Brandon Marshall.
TE- Brent Celek, Vernon Davis, Tony Gonzalez
K- Henry, Hanson, Crosby
D- Eagles, 49ers, Jaguars
QB- Ryan Fitzpatrick, RJ3, Michael Vick
RB- Shonn Jones, Steven Jackson, Demarco Murray
WR- Deshaun Jackson, Wes Welker, Steve Smith
TE- Rob Gronkowski, Jermichah Finley, Jason Witten
K- Nick Folk, Lawrence Tynes, David Buehler
D- Saints, Packers, Lions