Welcome to the Tuesday edition of the Pick Six newsletter!
In just over 48 hours, the Lions and Chiefs will be opening the 2023 NFL season with a game in Kansas City, but before that happens, we have about 300 more season predictions to get through, so we better get started.
For today, we have the return of Pete Prisco's Power Rankings, and in a twist, he'll also be revealing his Super Bowl pick. And in another twist, neither of his Super Bowl teams cracked the top three in his rankings. Classic Pete. Also coming today, I'll be unveiling my picks for Week 1.
Alright, let's get to the rundown.
Actually, before we get to the rundown, here's a quick reminder to anyone who missed Monday's newsletter. For our Labor Day edition that came out yesterday, we predicted the final record for all 32 teams and. Alright, now let's really get to the rundown.
As always, here's your daily reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the newsletter. It's the perfect gift to get for your favorite football-loving friend at the start of the season. To get them signed up, all you have to do is click here.
1. Prisco's unveils his Super Bowl pick AND Power Rankings heading into Week 1
After ducking my phone calls for the entire offseason, Pete Prisco finally sent me a text this week to let me know that he's NOT retiring. Prisco's goal has always been to outlast Tom Brady and he's finally done it, so I'm guessing he's going to retire next year.
To mark his return, not only did Prisco turn in his first power rankings of the season, but he also revealed his Super Bowl pick. So who does Prisco have in the big game?
JAGUARS vs. 49ERS. "The Jaguars play in a bad AFC South division, one that features two rookie starting quarterbacks, while the 49ers play in a division with two of the worst teams in the league in the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams. That, coupled with a variety of other things -- most notably talent -- is why I think those two teams will play in the Super Bowl in Las Vegas."
As for the power rankings, here's a look at Prisco's top five teams heading into Week 1, and in a surprise, he doesn't have EITHER of his Super Bowl teams in the top four:
I'm not going to spoil the rest of the power rankings here, but I am going to give you a few nuggets. Here's what has changed since Prisco's last power rankings, which came out in early May after the draft ended.
- The biggest jump in the AFC went to the Browns, who have vaulted all the way up into the top 10. Back in May, they were ranked 14th, but Prisco is apparently impressed with everything that's going on in Cleveland and he now has them at ninth. The Broncos also moved up five spots, going from 28th to 23rd.
- In the NFC, the Commanders and Packers both jumped up five spots. Green Bay moved from 19th to 14th while Washington made the jump from 18th to 13th. Both teams are now ahead of the Lions, who sit at 15th in Prisco's rankings.
- The biggest tumble went to the Giants, who fell five spots from 13th to 18th. Based on his power rankings, it sounds like Prisco expects the Giants to be the worst team in the NFC East.
- If you're wondering where Prisco has the Jets, they're ranked seventh overall. With Aaron Rodgers at quarterback, Prisco has clearly decided to jump on the Jets' bandwagon.
- Now, let's talk about the worst team in the NFL. For his first power rankings of the year, Prisco has the CARDINALS ranked dead last, which makes sense, because I'm pretty sure they're not even trying this season. Based on how bad the Cardinals are, there's a good chance they're going to spend the entire season at the bottom of Prisco's rankings.
If you want to know where your favorite team ended up in Prisco's Week 1 Power Rankings, be can do that on Twitter by clicking here. I argue with him all the time about everything.. If you want to argue with Prisco over his rankings, you
It's Tuesday, which can only mean one thing: It's time for my weekly picks.
If this is your first season with us, here's how the formula works around here: I stay up until an insane hour every Monday night so that I can give you my picks every Tuesday morning. The newsletter will feature three of my picks, and then if you feel like reading the rest of them, you. A piece of hair grows back on my balding head every time someone clicks through, so I encourage you to click through early and often.
With that in mind, here are three of my main picks for the week, starting with the NFL opener on Thursday:
- Detroit at Kansas City (-6.5): Patrick Mahomes has started five openers in his career and he's 5-0 in those games with the Chiefs scoring an average of 37.8 points per win. That means I automatically have to pick his team to win. However, I do think the Lions can keep this close, especically if Chris Jones doesn't play and it doesn't look like he'll be playing. PICK: Chiefs 33-30 over Lions.
- San Francisco at Pittsburgh (+2.5): If I was coming off major elbow surgery, the last person I would want to be facing in my first game back is T.J. Watt, but that's exactly what Brock Purdy is going to be dealing with. The 49ers' biggest offensive weakness is everyone on their offensive line not named Trent Williams and I think the Steelers' front seven might abuse them on Sunday. PICK: Steelers 26-23 over 49ers
- Philadelphia at New England (+4): For me, this one is simple: The Patriots are celebrating Tom Brady Appreciation Day on Sunday and there's no way I'm picking against them on Tom Brady Appreciation Day. Also, quarterbacks tend to struggle against Bill Belichick when facing him for the first time and Jalen Hurts will be facing him for the first time come Sunday. PICK: Patriots 22-19 over Eagles
Once again, to check out the rest of my picks for Week 1,.
3. NFL milestones that could be matched in 2023
Every season in the NFL, we see multiple milestones get hit, and this season won't be any different. Our Jeff Kerr spent the past 24 hours hunkered down in his man cave so that he could find all the milestones that might get topped this year.
Here's a list of five major milestones from Kerr's list:
- Joe Burrow needs 4,000 passing yards and 30 touchdown passes to join Dan Marino as the only other player in NFL history to reach those marks in three of their first four seasons.
- With 35 touchdown passes, Josh Allen can become the first player in NFL history to throw for at least 35 touchdowns in three consecutive seasons.
- With at least 100 receptions, Davante Adams can become the third player in NFL history to hit triple digits in at least four consecutive seasons, joining Antonio Brown (six, 2013-2018) and Marvin Harrison (four, 1999-2002).
- If Brandin Cooks hits the 1,000-yard mark, he'll become the first player in NFL history hit that milestone with five different teams. The Cowboys receiver has already hit the mark with the Rams, Saints, Texans and Patriots.
- Derrick Henry needs just one game with at least 200 rushing yards to surpass Adrian Peterson (six games) and O.J. Simpson (six) for the most 200-yard games in NFL history.
4. Predicting offensive and defensive rookie of the year winners
I've told you we were going to bombard you with NFL predictions this week and we're going to keep doing that right now with our predictions for rookie of the year on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. For this prediction, we rounded up 13 or our writers here at CBSSports.com and asked them to predict who's going to win the two awards.
With that in mind, here's a look at our picks for OROY (Next to each player's name, you can see their Caesar Sportsbook odds for winning the award and how many votes they received):
- Bijan Robinson, Falcons (+275): Five votes
- Bryce Young, Panthers (+450): Four votes
- Zay Flowers, Ravens (+1600): Two votes
- Anthony Richardson, Colts (+650): One vote (The lone Richardson vote came from Josh Edwards)
- Jordan Addison, Vikings (+2200): One vote (The lone Addison vote came from Tyler Sullivan)
On the defensive side of the ball, our writers all agreed to disagree with five different players receiving at least one vote.
- Will Anderson, Texans (+500): Four votes
- Emmanuel Forbes, Commanders (+1500): Three votes
- Jalen Carter, Eagles (+500): Three votes
- Christian Gonzalez, Patriots (+1000): Two votes
- Jack Campbell, Lions (+1200): One vote (The lone Campbell vote came from Will Brinson)
Very important note: Last year, I Sauce Gardner at +1200 would take home this award and that's exactly what happened. This year, my vote went to Jalen Carter.
Anyway, if you want to see everyone's full explanation for both of their rookie votes,. We also ranked the rookie of the year candidates based on how we expect them to play this year and you .
5. Backup QB rankings: Panthers in the best spot
If a team's starting quarterback goes down, that usually means their season is over, but not always. For example, take the 2019 Saints. Even though Drew Brees missed five games, the Saints kept their season afloat thanks to the fact that their backup QB (Teddy Bridgewater) led them to a 5-0 record while Brees was out.
So which teams might be able to survive a quarterback injury this year? To answer that question, Cody Benjamin ranked every team's backup QB situation, and fittingly enough, Bridgewater's own team cracked the top five.
If you want to see the rest of Cody's list and the full explanation for his rankings,.
6. Extra points: Cardinals QB mystery continues
It's been a busy 24 hours in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you.
- Cardinals still haven't named a starting QB. In the NFL, the starting QB for a team is generally required to do one press conference per week and the thought was that we could figure out Arizona's starter based on their press conference schedule this week, but that won't be happening. According to ESPN.com, the Cardinals have not scheduled Josh Dobbs or Clayton Tune to speak at the podium this week. It's starting to look like the Cards are going to literally make us wait until Sunday to see who's starting.
- Colts reveal their plan at running back. With Jonathan Taylor out for at least four games, the Colts will be turning to a running back-by-committee approach for the next few weeks. "I think it's running back by committee," coach Shane Steichen said Monday, via the Indy Star. "Whoever's got the hot hand, let 'em ride a little bit." You can .
- Brian Burns not practicing for Panthers. We've mentioned yesterday how Nick Bosa and Chris Jones might not be playing this week, and now, it looks like you can add Burns' name to the list. The Panthers star skipped Monday's practice and he did that because . If something doesn't change soon, the linebacker could miss Carolina's opener against the Falcons.
- "ManningCast" schedule revealed for 2023. If you've never seen the "ManningCast," I recommend watching it at least once this season. This is an alternate broadcast of "Monday Night Football" that's hosted by Peyton and Eli Manning. However, they're not on every Monday. This year, they'll be on for Jets-Bills in Week 1. If you want to know the rest of their schedule, be sure to click here. If you want to see the Manning brothers hilariously judge auditions for a third host, then you're going to want to click here.