If you do your sports betting online then you are probably familiar with the path that the Atlanta Falcons have taken to get to this point. The very public banishing of quarterback Michael Vick was accompanied by the not-so-public dismantling of the entire team. Almost every veteran offensive player was released, or left in free agency, including reliable tight end Alge Crumpler.
The NFL betting world was further shocked when the Falcons decided to put the football in the hands of rookie quarterback Matt Ryan two years ago. But Ryan was mature beyond his years, and to give Ryan that anchor at tight end that every rookie quarterback needs, the Falcons brought in future Hall of Fame player Tony Gonzalez.
The Atlanta defense poses a problem. Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon was a factor for those who would do their college football betting online, but he is one of several Atlanta linebackers with little or no pro experience. The hope is that veteran defensive linemen John Abraham and Jamaal Anderson can bring this relatively young defense together.
The Kansas City Chiefs are obviously sick of losing. Gone is running back Larry Johnson, and in to replace him is dynamic running back Thomas Jones. The Chiefs have made some changes in their offensive line to try and give quarterback Matt Cassel time to throw. Even with a terrible offensive line, Cassel threw for 2,924 yards and 16 touchdowns last season. The Chiefs are bringing in some youth to shore up the line, but that youth has a history of being able to play.
The Chiefs are not entrusting their defense to youth as they have a roster filled with players with more than four years of experience. The Chiefs lacked prowess in almost every aspect of defense last season, but especially bad was their pass coverage. To help out the defensive backs, the Chiefs plan on putting more pressure on opposing quarterbacks and disrupting the opposing team’s offense.
Rebuilding a team like the Chiefs will take years. This season the Chiefs have a few more pieces of the offensive puzzle, but there are so many questions on the Chiefs roster that it will be some time before Kansas City has any chance of being a playoff contender.
The Falcons will be using the preseason to solidify their depth chart and determine their second and third string players. A championship team is deep at every position, and that is the direction in which the Falcons are headed.
Pick: Atlanta Falcons 21-3
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