That's been my thought process all day today. No matter what I'm currently doing, all I can think about is football. Does that mean I've been a bad parent and semi-neglectful of my kids? Probably. A poor husband who isn't listening to his wife? Without a doubt. A failure as a prosecutor? It wouldn't surprise me one bit.
But who cares? FOOTBALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
As we're all aware, football writers (or, in my case, "writers") are contractually obligated to write several different kinds of articles; power rankings, positional lists, and of course ... BOLD predictions at the beginning of ever season.
This is not a choice I'm making. This isn't the article you deserve, but it's the article you need. Or something to that effect. But since we're making predictions, I think I'll spice things up a bit by predicting more than just Chiefs-related issues or NFL-related issues. I shall predict many things. And they will all be BOLD.
BOLD Prediction No. 1: The Chiefs Offense will be good this year. Not "good," but actually GOOD.
Again, we're going BOLD, people. Saying the offense will be improved is not BOLD, it's fairly objectively obvious.
Do I have any idea how things will shake up with an offensive line that is still in flux? Absolutely not. But I've watched Jeremy Maclin already play better than any receiver I've ever watched in a Chiefs uniform. I've watched Travis Kelce continue to look like an absolute freak. I've watched Jamaal Charles look like Jamaal Charles. And I've watched supporting players (Albert Wilson, Jason Avant, DeAnthony Thomas) look like they can actually help a little as opposed to just being warm bodies.
Yes, the offensive line worries me. But for whatever reason, the Fisher to RT and Stephenson to LT move made me feel better, not worse. I'm fairly confident Mitch Morse will do all right (though as a rookie he's sure to take his licks against the Texans). And while RG is up in the air, it's not Mike McGlynn back there.
I think we've all underestimated how much better the receiving group of Maclin / Wilson / Avant / DAT / Conley will be than Bowe / Avery / Hemingway / AJJ / Hammond. We've all thought "OK, minor upgrade." There's an off chance (and BOLD predictions are for off chances, people) that it's a massive upgrade, both at the top and in depth. We could well see Andy Reid's offense how he WANTS it run, not how he's forced to run it due to personnel.
So how good is a "good" offense in a BOLD prediction? Top 10, baby, with over 26 points a game. We're BOLD today.
BOLD Prediction No. 2: Dee Ford will hardly see the field again this season
This is a much less happy BOLD prediction, and maybe it's not even all that bold (whoops, I mean BOLD. Sorry about that).
Ford was virtually nonexistent during preseason. We can talk all we want about it being tough to get on the field when you're playing behind Houston and Hali, but shouldn't we have seen something from him the last month? You remember Justin Houston's first preseason? He was eating guys alive out there. It was painfully obvious how much better he was than other second teamers.
In Ford's case, he was outplayed by Dezman Moses (a 3rd teamer traditionally) and it wasn't particularly close. John Dorsey has done a lot of good things, but Ford's selection may well not turn out to be one of them.
BOLD Prediction No. 3: The Walking Dead continues to be awesome
As a subset BOLD prediction to this one, a certain type of person is going to continue to insist that this show isn't good. They will be wrong, and bad people, and probably communists.
I think this is the year we finally see "Comic Book Rick" take over. One thing that differentiates Rick in the TV Series from Rick in the comics is that Rick in the comics is a flat-out bad dude. I don't mean a bad dude as in a bad guy (though he straddles that line), but a bad dude like the heroes of the game "Bad Dudes." A bad dude that will stab you in your sleep if need be.
Rick started off the series a more traditional "good guy." He's making the rounds to Bad Dude. And it's awesome. Also, Carl is finally almost old enough to stop annoying people. Yay!
BOLD Prediction No. 4: Charcandrick West seizes backup touches from Knile Davis and gets called Terrance West by Gregg Rosenthal
Is this a BOLD prediction or a wish list? Aren't they the same thing? Either way, if West gets a shot I don't think he's giving it up.
As far as the second part, I admit that's not a very BOLD prediction, but more of an inevitable fact. Long live Rosenthal.
BOLD Prediction No. 5: The Chiefs snag that first playoff win
I'm not including the Chiefs defense in any BOLD predictions because there's nothing I could say about them that would be BOLD. They have the potential to be special. Throw that in with the offense being actually good and the Chiefs are going to finally have the balance and talent to make a run.
Now, normally a BOLD prediction would include a Super Bowl run, but considering the 9,000 year playoff win drought ... I'm thinking a playoff win is BOLD enough.
BOLD Prediction No. 6: Joel Thorman finally watches Friday Night Lights, the TV Series
After doing so, he's so psyched up by the hundreds of Coach Taylor moments that he jumps from the press box in an attempt to tackle Philip Rivers. He will be missed (of course he doesn't make it to the field. It's a TV Series, not gamma rays).
BOLD Prediction No. 7: This is the year Peyton Manning finally takes a step back
People have been predicting this for years, and every year Manning comes back just long enough to torture Chiefs fans. Sure, it's been fun watching him and the Broncos completely flame out in the playoffs, but at least they're in the playoffs (and the Super Bowl), you know?
That said, watching Manning throw during the third preseason game was... interesting. He threw up some ducks. And not his normal ducks. He's always thrown a wobbly, lofted passes. The reason they worked is that they landed EXACTLY where he aimed them. This preseason that wasn't the case. He short-armed a couple of throws in a way I haven't seen since ... well, pretty much ever.
Father Time always has been, and always will be, undefeated. Manning has beaten him every year by knowing the game better than anyone else alive. But he's always had at least adequate arm strength and movement ability. Watching him drop back from under center is like watching a guy who doesn't belong dropping back under center. It looks physically painful for him.
It's finally happening, people.
BOLD Prediction No. 8: The NFL continues to break all the viewing records.
Every year we get told how the NFL is going to struggle to deal with whatever off-field drama is getting a ton of media attention. Concussions, players getting in legal trouble, player pay, teams moving, league punishments overturned, whatever the issue may be, we're always hearing (at least in some media circles) that the NFL is "showing cracks" or something to that effect.
As long as more people watch NFL regular season games than watch championships of other sports, it's going to remain an unstoppable juggernaut. This is America, where profitability makes you bulletproof. Maybe Roger Goodell will become a fall guy, maybe not. But the league is going to keep marching on as long as it's the most popular sport in America. And it is, by about a mile or so.
Is that right or wrong? I don't know. It's sports. Every league has a horrific amount of corruption, teams skirting the rules, players breaking the law, and all kinds of stuff that makes us feel squishy. The NFL isn't special in that regard. It's special in the amount of popularity it has. And because of that, it'll keep marching along.
BOLD Prediction No. 9: At least three of these BOLD predictions comes true. Let's hope it's not the one about Dee Ford.
Any BOLD predictions for me? Remember, go BOLD or go home.