Welcome to Complex NFL Pick 'Em, a new franchise in which our office's most football-crazy editors offer their predictions on each week's slate of games. But instead of picking the results of all 16 games every week, we're having our participants predict only the outcomes of the marquee matchups—that is, the game involving his (or her!) favorite team, as well as that week's nationally televised games. To kick off the franchise, our editor panel will reveal their favorite teams and discuss the roots of their fandom before making their Week 1 picks...

redskinsNAME: Donnie Kwak, senior deputy editor

FIRST MEMORY: "The first game I ever watched was Super Bowl XVII, January 30, 1983. When I started watching, I remember seeing the score—Miami 7 Washington 0—and thinking, "Damn, they got a lot of points already!"

BEST MOMENT: "There were a lot from childhood, but I'd have to say the second quarter of Super Bowl XXII. The Skins went down 10-0 early, Doug Williams got (briefly) hurt, and then—BOOM—35 points in one quarter. My dad actually broke the couch that day from jumping, shit you not."

WORST MOMENT: "Hmmm. I'll exclude all the ignominious moments from the last decade and instead go back to the NFC Championship Game in 1986—getting shut out by the Giants, 17-0, on a freezing afternoon at the Meadowlands. The Giants owned us that year, big time."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Gary Clark, WR. Art Monk was cool and all, but Gary was the best Redskins wideout in my lifetime. With the exception of one brutal, game-changing drop in the '86 Championship Game [*wince*], he was the clutchest player I've ever seen. Would've absolutely killed it in the fantasy era. Check the stats!"

VILLAIN: "Joe Morris, Mark Bavaro, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin...hmmm, should I include an Eagle? Fuck the Eagles, but I'll throw Andre Waters on there."

2010 PREDICTION: "We're gonna make the playoffs this year, I promise you."


raidersNAME: Jack Erwin, senior editor

FIRST MEMORY: "Wish I could say it was the Raiders' 38-9 drubbing of Washington in Super Bowl XVIII, but I'm late to the Raider bandwagon. I started following them in '99, so I remember Greg Papa on the radio play-by-play: 'Touchdown R-r-r-r-raiderrrrs...'"

BEST MOMENT: "An 'awwww' moment that touches my heart even more now than it did then: 2001, Seahawks @ Oakland, watching a Sons of Anarchy-looking East Bay Hells Angels type in full Raider regalia (spiked helmet, spiked shoulder pads, spiked boots) walk up to the Coliseum...holding the hand of his 3- or 4-year-old daughter, also in her full, spiked glory (and a silver and black skirt!). Of course the 'awwww' was tempered slightly by fans chanting 'Rayyyyydurrrrrs' during the moment of silence for 9/11 (this was the first home game after the attacks). Also, I'd forgotten about it until this week, but this play was pretty sweet."

WORST MOMENT: "The 'Tuck Play' is the easy choice, and for sheer 'You have got to be fucking kidding me' outrage, it's gotta take the cake, but I'm gonna go with the AFC Championship from the year before: Shannon Sharpe scores on a 96-yard fluke, Tony Siragusa takes out Rich Gannon with a dirty bellyflop, and the Ravens steal the Raiders' rightful spot in Super Bowl XXXV. Oakland was the best team in the NFL that year (and that was the best Oakland team of the 2000-2002 run, better than the '02 Super Bowl squad), and they were two plays from playing (and beating, I have no doubt) the Kerry Collins Giants."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Tim Brown. Kind of an un-Raider in that a) he wasn't a track star wideout, and b) didn't eat anybody's children (that we know of), 'Timmy' was just a steady All-Pro for more than a decade. The fuckery is undoubtedly part of the Raider appeal, but it's good to have a no-drama guy. From the current squad, it's gotta be Nnamdi Asomugha, a Cal alum who's another good-guy Raider who also happens to be the best player at his position in the league (sorry Revis Islanders, let's see your dude do it a couple years in a row)."

VILLAIN: "Could be Siragusa, Walt Coleman, or Mike Shanahan and his chop-blocking shenanigans, but really, it's us. The Raiders either kick ass or shoot themselves in the ass, there's rarely any in between."

2010 PREDICTION: "11-5, and this isn't some 'We're gonna make the playoffs this year, I promise you' puffery—I actually looked at the schedule."


nygbannerNAME: Justin Monroe, senior staff writer

FIRST MEMORY: "Bill Parcells, Phil Simms, Mark Bavaro, Lawrence Taylor, and the rest of Big Blue beating John Elway's Broncos to win Super Bowl XXI. How Parcell's fresh Giants sweater isn't regularly featured in Complex, I do not know."

BEST MOMENT: "To piss off Kwak, I could say when LT broke Joe Theismann and ended his bitch-ass career, but it's gotta be 'The Helmet Catch.' One of the most spectacular, improbable plays ever AND it was in the Super Bowl AND it helped the G-Men beat Tom Terrific and Bill Belichick's undefeated Patriots, cock-blocking annual '19-0' champagne and fellatio parties. Catching a ball on your dome has never been so good."

WORST MOMENT: "When XLII hero Plaxico Burress ruined any shot at a Super Bowl repeat by shooting himself in the leg??? *shakes head* When my childhood hero Lawrence Taylor, whose crack addiction I'd recovered from, was charged with the statutory rape of a 16-year-old prostitute??? *shakes head vigorously* When Eli Manning made a commercial about licking cream off of Oreos??? *shakes head violently* For fuck's sake, men!"

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Lawrence Taylor. Not that I condone smoking crack or soliciting an underage prostitute...Note to self: If there's grass on the field, go ahead and check the driver's license anyway. And if you have to ask her pimp for it, walk away."

VILLAIN: "Peyton Manning. Eli's superior older brother has a military-grade weapon for an arm, the best footwork since Riverdance, the most hilarious SNL skit by an athlete ever, AND the league's most intriguing receding hairline."

2010 PREDICTION: "12-4. I was gonna say 11-5 but then I saw Erwin penciled Al Davis' team in for the same, so fuck that."


billsNAME: Jason Sfetko, assistant art director

FIRST MEMORY: "Wide right, do I need to say more?"

BEST MOMENT: "'The Comeback.' Coming back against the Oilers in the AFC Wild Card game with Frank Reich at QB! And blowing out the Raiders 51-3 in the '91 AFC Championship game (sorry Jack!)."

WORST MOMENT: "Besides losing the four Super Bowls in a row...I'd have to say the Music City Miracle. I still think that was a forward pass."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Marv Levy, Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas, Bruce Smith, Steve Tasker, and pretty much anyone that played with us during our four-year Super Bowl stretch."

VILLAIN: "O.J. Simpson and Scott Norwood."

2010 PREDICTION: "16-0."


coltsNAME: Peter Rubin, executive editor

FIRST MEMORY: "Sorry, B'more, but I remember when Unitas' Team packed up and came to Naptown in 1984. Welcome to the land of...well, nothing. Enjoy your stay, Mighty Blue Upside-Down Omega (just came up with it, hope you like it)!"

BEST MOMENT: "Man, if only I could remember what I was doing on February 4, 2007...wait, that's right, I was in a bar in Rincon, Puerto Rico, eating a steak and watching the Colts welcome Chicago to Miami with a huge Cleveland steamer. The sinking feeling I got when Devin Hester took the opening kickoff to the house was amply compensated for by our much-maligned defense forcing three fumbles and putting the nail in Sexy Rexy's career prospects with a fourth quarter pick-six. Super Bowl ring, bitch!"

WORST MOMENT: "Edge going to Phoenix? Jim Sorgi deciding it was time to fluff the other Manning? Harbaugh's Hail Mary not quite upsetting the Steelers in the '95 AFC championship? All grim memories indeed, but for me it's gotta be Ben "Put The Lotion In The Basket" Roethlisberger inexplicably tackling Nick Harper (the day after Harper had been STABBED BY HIS WIFE) to salvage the '06 AFC Championship after The Bus coughed it up at the goal line (after headcase Mike Vanderjagt missed a game-tying field goal). Fuck you, Roethlisberger. And fuck you, YouTube, for making it possible for me to relive that moment whenever my masochism demands it."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Bob 'Week 3? Time to get hurt!' Sanders, The Dwight Freeney & Robert Mathis Show, Jeff Saturday, Marvin 'Allegedly Break Yo' Self' Harrison. What, you want me to reminisce over the shittier times?"

VILLAIN: "Tom Brady, Philip Rivers and his date-rape face, Roethlisberger. I loathe you all, gentlemen."

2010 PREDICTION: "What's new? 12-4 or 13-3, and bowing out in the second playoff game. It's the COLTS, man. It's what we do."


49ersNAME: Gina Batlle, assistant photo editor

FIRST MEMORY: "Being 5 and watching the Niners win the Super Bowl. It was 1990."

BEST MOMENT: "Beating the Broncos 55-10 in Super Bowl (which one was that?). [Ed. note - XXIV.] Or the 1994 Super Bowl...our team was ill!"

WORST MOMENT: "Every time we lose to the Cowboys or Packers."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Rice and Young...Merton Hanks was hot for a second there."

VILLAIN: "That damn T.O."

2010 PREDICTION: "11-5, hopefully."


nygbannerNAME: Joe La Puma, senior editorial strategist

FIRST MEMORY: "Not really my first memory, but most vivid was getting on my knees and praying to the gods that Scott Norwood missed the field goal in Super Bowl XXV. He missed, the Giants won, and my family and I had a celebration like none other that included loud uncles and fine Italian cuisine."

BEST MOMENT: "Interviewing Lawrence Taylor—the best linebacker of all time and literal game-changer—two years ago in NYC."

WORST MOMENT: "The Giant collapse of 2002, when Jeff Garcia led the 49ers to the second biggest comeback in NFL history during the playoffs."

FAVORITE PLAYER: "Lawrence Taylor."

VILLAIN: "Brian Dawkins/Plaxico's gun."

2010 PREDICTION: "11-5. But 9-7, to be honest."




redskinsNAME: Donnie Kwak, senior deputy editor

1 P.M.) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 24-17. I've jinxed my team too many times in the past. Even if we take an L, we got a cake schedule the next few weeks so it's all good. Fuck it."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "BALTIMORE, 17-14. Why? Because Mark Sanchez sucks. Balls."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "SAN DIEGO, 35-10. Damn, we couldn't get a better MNF game? Wack sauce."

raidersNAME: Jack Erwin, senior editor

1 P.M.) OAKLAND @ TENNESSEE: "OAKLAND, 16-14. I actually chalked this one up as an L in my formulation for the Raiders season record, but who's actually going to pick against their team in this thing? (Besides Donnie and Jason.) The Raiders put 10 in the box (ahem) to stop Chris Johnson, let Nnamdi cover the entire Titans receiving corps, and wait for Vince Young to still turn the ball over. On offense, Campbell and McFadden do just enough, and See-Bass kicks a 65-yard field goal to win it."

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 24-7. Washington has the better coach, Dallas has the better everything else. The real action here is on the number of screwed up rat faces Mike Shanahan makes at Albert Haynesworth. The O/U is 14."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "BALTIMORE, 21-9. That's two defensive TDs for the Ravens, Ed Reed or no. This season is gonna get ugly for the Jets once the offense implodes; the Hard Knocks schtick only works if they're winning."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "SAN DIEGO, 31-10. I don't hate the Chargers nearly as much as I should, as evidenced by my selection of slingshot Phil Rivers for the 'Plex fantasy league. Let him drag the field with the rest of the comp and save his off days for the Raider games."

nygbannerNAME: Justin Monroe, senior staff writer

1 P.M.) CAROLINA @ NEW YORK GIANTS: "GIANTS, 27-10. Remember how the Panthers reamed the G-Men 41-9 in their final home game at Giants Stadium before the team moved into New Meadowlands, which belongs equally to the overrated, overhyped, headline-hogging Jets? I'm willing to bet 45 guys in blue do."

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "WASHINGTON, 30-24. I gave serious thought to calling this one a scoreless tie but then I remembered that Romo and McNabb wait until late in the season, when it really counts, before they start firing balls into the grass and the upper deck."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "BALTIMORE, 28-16. At least Mark Sanchez has a winning smile."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "KANSAS CITY, 27-24. I don't actually think this is happening. I just feel bad for anybody who has to live in Kansas City and thought this might help."

billsNAME: Jason Sfetko, assistant art director

1 P.M.) MIAMI @ BUFFALO: "BUFFALO, 20-17. As long as the Bills don't beat themselves, we got this (sorry Donnie, not going against my team just yet)."

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 31-24. I think Washington will be good this year, just not in their division."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "JETS, 16-13. Should be a defensive game, but I see the Jets squeaking out with a W."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "SAN DIEGO, 35-9. This should be a blowout, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Kansas City come out swinging."

coltsNAME: Peter Rubin, executive editor

1 P.M.) INDIANAPOLIS @ HOUSTON: "INDY, 27-13. All this Arian Nation talk is beginning to feel like the second coming of Ryan Moats. We get it, the guy's a competent back who had some good preseason buzz. You know who's never had good preseason buzz? The Colts. 0-4 this year again, baby! Sure, there's a new guy in Pey-Pey's earpiece, and the O-Line is looking bruised the fuck up, and Anthony Gonzalez is going to be returning punts (?!), but I don't see a reason why we shouldn't ruin the Texan's umpteenth 'this is the year!' year in a row."

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 21-13. Dunno, man. I hate the Cowboys—HATE the Cowboys (though it didn't stop me from drafting the Green-Eyed Bandit Miles Austin)—but while I feel for my man @Kwakaflocka, I can't think that an infusion of Chunky soup is going to fix what's wrong down Washington way. Besides, you gotta pay the troll toll to get into the 'Boys' hole."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "BALTIMORE, 14-10. With Darrelle Revis back from his stint on that desert island, it's all on Ray Reezy (unless my last-round pickup TJ Houshmandzadeh comes through after Anquan Boldin's legs fall off). Not gonna be a ton of offense here, even taking into account the mighty powers of 5-Hour Energy's new Rawse beard."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "RAPISTS SAN DIEGO, 31-17. Chiefs are gonna make strides this year, but Crayton/Floyd/Gates/Mathews is too much offense to overcome. Have fun storming the Cassel, Bolts!"

49ersNAME: Gina Batlle, assistant photo editor

4 P.M.) SAN FRANCISCO @ SEATTLE: "SAN FRANCISCO, 24-10. Frank Gore goes off... This is our year!"

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 31-27. Kim K.'s always a good luck charm. "

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "JETS, 20-10. Rex rocking those Chucks?"


nygbannerNAME: Joe La Puma, senior editorial strategist

1 P.M.) CAROLINA @ NEW YORK GIANTS: "GIANTS, 17-14. I hope we win."

SNF) DALLAS @ WASHINGTON: "DALLAS, 24-14. This game just isn't going to be as fun as it would be if Jim Zorn was on the sidelines looking confused as fuck. Dallas has more talent, sahry Kwak."

MNF1) BALTIMORE @ NEW YORK JETS: "BALTIMORE, 17-10. Great MNF kickoff game. Revis' return and Rex's/Ray's pre-game fodder makes it even more interesting."

MNF2) SAN DIEGO @ KANSAS CITY: "KANSAS CITY, 14-10. I dislike Philip Rivers a lot."



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