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which may seem disappointing on the surface, but represents the best start the

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After two weeks [url=http://www.officialsaintslockerroom.com/elite-garrett-grayson-jersey]Authentic Garrett Grayson Jersey[/url] , the New Orleans Saints find themselves with a 1-1 record, team has had over the first two weeks since 2013.The Saints started the season with two games at home but now hit the road to face their most hated rival, the Atlanta Falcons, in the Saints’ home away from home.No week gets Who Dat Nation’s blood pumping like “Falcons Hate Week” and the opportunity to take the Falcons down in their own house would be just what the team and the fans may need to kick this season into high gear.The Saints may be travelling to Atlanta for the first time this season on Sunday, but if everything breaks right this year, they’ll be back in February, so they should get used to the place.Last week I went 9-7I told you so: Chiefs over Steelers!What do I know: Eagles over Bucs?***WEEK 3Thursday, September 20th - Thursday Night FootballJets(1-1) at Browns(0-1-1)The stout Jets defense will take away Cleveland’s ability to run the ball, effectively taking away the one weapon they have.Cleveland’s woes continue into this week.Jets win 17-14.Pick: Jets***Sunday, September 23rd - Early GamesPackers(1-0-1) at Redskins(1-1)Aaron Rodgers and company face stiff competition from the Washington defense in this one, but Green Bay will steal a quality win on the road.Green Bay wins 30-24.Pick: Packers***Colts(1-1) at Eagles(1-1)Following a tough road loss last week, Philadelphia returns Carson Wentz to the field for the first time since his severe knee injury late last season.The reception at home should help Philly rebound nicely this week against Indianapolis.Philadelphia wins 30-17.Pick: Eagles***Bills(0-2) at Vikings(1-0-1)Buffalo just can't catch any breaks this year, now they face one of this year’s Super Bowl favorites in one of the toughest buildings in the league to play in.This one will be all Minnesota.Minnesota wins 31-7.Pick: Vikings***Raiders(0-2) at Dolphins(2-0)Oakland’s defense will have a tough time slowing down the Miami ground game.Jon Gruden will continue to wish he had a first-rate pass rusher.Miami wins 31-17.Pick: Dolphins***Broncos(2-0) at Ravens(1-1)After two weeks, it’s strength on strength as Denver’s rushing attack faces the Baltimore defense.This has the markings of a slow it down, grind it out game, but sometimes those games go the other way, and this one will come down to the passing games.Denver wins 34-26.Pick: Broncos***Bengals(2-0) at Panthers(1-1) Despite a good start to the season, Cincinnati will struggle on the road against Cam Newtonand the Panthers offense in Charlotte.Carolina wins 27-21.Pick: Panthers***Giants(0-2) at Texans(0-2)The Giants’ early-season woes continue in Houston as they struggle keeping up with the Texans rushing attack.Houston wins 26-17.Pick: Texans***Titans(1-1) at Jaguars(2-0)Jacksonville is riding high after a huge win over New England last week and the only thing that could keep them from winning their third game in a row here is overconfidence.Tennessee, a division rival, won't make it easy for the Jags, but they're outclassed on the road in this one.Jacksonville wins 26-13.Pick: Jaguars***49ers(1-1) at Chiefs(2-0)San Francisco’s inconsistant passing game will keep them from keeping this game close against the dominant Kansas City offense.Kansas City wins 40-20.Pick: Chiefs***Saints(1-1) at Falcons(1-1) - Game of the WeekNothing will come easy for the Saints in Atlanta this week, and they’ll need their defense to provide a consistancy they have struggled with so far.The biggest leaders on defense will need to come through in this one.Cam Jordan will need to get pressure, keeping Steve Sarkesian’s offense off balance.Another timely pick by Marcus Williams would be welcomed, and a huge interception or two by Marshon Lattimore would really kick things into overdrive.In fact, if Lattimore wanted to use his hands to pick off Matt Ryan this time, he could do it that way if he wanted to mix things up a little.The keys for success in this game are clear, the Saints have to force a few turnovers here and take advantage of the opportunities those turnovers present.In the matchup of the NFC South’s most dominant receivers, Michael Thomas needs to be the bigger factor than Julio Jones.Thomas has been unbelievable early this season, but this is the week he can make believers out of the doubters.The X-Factor is Alvin Kamara.If Kamara can have more consistant success in running the ball and controling the clock than he’s had so far in Mark Ingram’s absence, it would give the Saints all the boost they may need.Although there are exceptions, Saints/Falcons is usually a tense, tight affair, as both teams know how important a win over the other is.It may make the difference in the division race, in playoff seeding, and potentially in homefield advantage [url=http://www.officialsaintslockerroom.com/elite-p.-j.-williams-jersey]P. 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Williams Jersey[/url] , but just as important, there’s bragging rights.This will be another close game with a razor-thin margin for error.The Saints have been far from perfect this season, but like last year, this week is where they’ll start to hit their stride in the first quarter of the season.Saints win 31-30.Pick: Saints***Sunday, September 23rd - Late GamesChargers(1-1) at Rams(2-0)It’s the first regular season Battle of Los Angeles since these two franchises relocated a season ago.Both teams entered the season with serious aspirations and have done little to assuage those aspirations in the first few weeks.Even though this matchup should prove to be good between these future stadium-mates, the biggest thing to look for on Sunday is who the fans in attendance will be rooting for.Both teams have had the stadiums overrun by opposing fanbases since coming to LA a year ago.It could potentially be a lame atmosphere in the air for this one.Rams win 35-21.Pick: Rams***Cowboys(1-1) at Seahawks(0-2)Dallas will lean on Ezekiel Elliott to grind out a win in Seattle, while their defense make things difficult for Russell Wilson.Dallas wins 17-12.Pick: Cowboys***Bears(1-1) at Cardinals(0-2)Chicago will face little resistance from the NFL’s worst team in Arizona.Chicago’s defense will make Arizona’s terrible season even worse in this one.Chicago wins 27-3.Pick: Bears***Sunday Night FootballPatriots(1-1) at Lions(0-2)The big headline in this matchup is all about Detroit’s head coach Matt Patricia facing his former mentor, Bill Belichick, but the real story will be how quickly Tom Brady and newly acquired wide receiver, Josh Gordon get on the same page.New England will rebound from their Week 2 loss while Detroit continues their struggles.New England wins 38-17.Pick: Patriots***Monday, September 24th - Monday Night FootballSteelers(0-1-1) at Buccaneers(2-0)Defense need not apply in this matchup of the two top passing offenses in the NFL.Passing yards will be through the roof against these terrible defenses, but Tampa will make a few more crucial plays than Pittsburgh here at home.Tampa remains undefeated, while Pittsburgh remains winless.Tampa Bay wins 34-27.Pick: Buccaneers***That’s how I see it, tell us how you see Week 3 playing out. Leave your comments and insight below! Without stretching, New York Giants offensive lineman Chad Wheeler folds his 6-foot-7, 317-pound frame over far enough to place his palms flat on the ground. His knees are straight but not fully locked, because that's poor form, and he can comfortably hold himself there — he's that flexible.That's nothing for Wheeler. Like many NFL players, he does yoga."It's funny doing it as a team because a lot of guys haven't done it," Wheeler said. "It makes me feel proud in a way. Like guys that are way more athletic than me, I can bend better than them in certain positions."Football players don't fit the mold of a yogi , someone who regularly practices yoga. They're large athletes with sculpted muscles from countless hours of lifting and conditioning. Most do not look capable of the contortions required of the ancient discipline, such as standing on one foot with the other propped up on their knee in a tree pose for an extended period without falling over.Yet in recent years, the presence of yoga has grown in the NFL. The fast-paced, hard-hitting sport has accepted the more calming practice that emphasizes conscious breathing and body flow. Much like yin and yang, the two complement each other both mentally and physically."Obviously (yoga) helps with flexibility, what we call join integrity, discipline, focus and balance," said Los Angeles Chargers Director of Football/Medical Services James Collins, an NFL athletic trainer for 31 years. "It has a lot of different entities to it. And one thing about professional football players is that if you explain something to them and give them the science and reasoning behind it, you can get them to buy into it."Many teams haven't adopted yoga, but their players practice it individually, including Denver Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall, Buffalo Bills placekicker Steven Hauschka and New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold.The Giants, Jacksonville Jaguars [url=http://www.officialsaintslockerroom.com/elite-ken-crawley-jersey]Ken Crawley Jersey[/url] , New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears offer it to their players on recovery days. Others make it a team activity: the Chargers, Cleveland Browns and Dallas Cowboys."I was going into it expecting to tell them all the reasons why they should be practicing yoga and why it's so beneficial," said Kaleen Lugo, the Chargers' yoga instructor. "They're just like, 'You're preaching to the choir, girl. We know.'" PHYSICAL BENEFITSGetting ready in his pass-rush stance, New York Jets defensive lineman Leonard Williams has his legs spread, knees bent and feet staggered. He leans forward with a hand on the ground.That's how he stays until the ball is snapped, holding his 6-5, 302-pound body in the three-point stance."For my position, you can get knocked off," Williams said. "When we're playing double teams, we got to stunt and do stuff, so it's like sometimes we have to be on one foot, plant and go somewhere. I feel like yoga helps with that, when we're doing one-legged poses and stuff like that. It helps with my balance ."Yoga helps with so much more than balance, and flexibility.Collins, who's also the Professional Football Athletic Trainers' Society president, said yoga is great for multidirectional joints such as the elbows, wrists, ankles, hips and shoulders. Regular stretching is linear and doesn't help strengthen those areas .Yoga also keeps muscles pliable and allows them to recover faster."At minimum, doing it helps maintain what you have," Collins said. "Especially as an athlete and a football player, as he's going through a season and his bodies getting beat up, everything starts to shut down — 'Boy, I feel stiff. I'm sore. I can't do this.' But if you're doing things throughout the season, like yoga, to help maintain what you've established with your body, that helps you get through the season, helps reduce your chance of injury and things of that nature."Each player — position, really — is different, too.Gwen Lawrence, founder of Power Yoga for Sport, has been teaching athlete-focused yoga for 25 years and taught the Giants for more than a decade under former head coach Tom Coughlin. While she would work on arm and spine strength — spinal rotation — for a quarterback, she would focus more on the neck [url=http://www.officialsaintslockerroom.com/elite-a.j.-klein-jersey]A.J. Klein Jersey Salute to Service[/url] , hips and wrists for a lineman.It comes down to releasing tension and building strength in overworked parts of the body."I didn't realize once I got the hold of it how much stronger I felt," Giants linebacker Jordan Williams said. "I wasn't doing anything but using my body weight, and I felt so much stronger."MENTAL BENEFITS Bending to the side, Detroit Lions running back Ameer Abdullah reaches for a block on the floor . He then lifts his other legs straight out so he is parallel to the ground and extends his free arm upward.Each limb is stretched out straight, as he breathes through the difficulty of holding yoga's half-moon pose.That's where the mind-over-matter mentality comes in."They need to be trained when they're in a tough situation, they can't just bail," Lawrence said. "A lot of times they'll be like, 'Ah, this is too hard. This hurts,' and they'll jump out of that. You can't do that in a game, and you can't do that in yoga."Mental toughness is one of the six facets Lawrence teaches in her yoga class, along with strength, flexibility, balance, focus and breath. But she also has a six-week mindfulness course Coughlin had the medical staff and players go through. The well-being of the mind is just as important as the well-being of body."We spend a lot of time paying attention to the psychology of the athlete," said National Athletic Trainers' Association president Tory Lindley, who's also the Senior Associate Athletic Director for Health, Safety and Performance and Director of Athletic Training Services at Northwestern University. "That mind-body connection is critical."On the field and off it.In 2003, Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Keith Mitchell sustained a career-ending injury . It came after seven years in the NFL, mostly spent with the Saints. He was lost, saying he showed signed of depression and had suicidal thoughts, until he found yoga.Mitchell credits meditation and conscious breathing for getting him through the tough time. Now, he's a yoga instructor and hopes the practice grows in the NFL because he wishes he had done it as a player."The game, I always say, is 80 percent mental," Mitchell said. "So anything we can do to reboot the mind — I call it a meditation and I teach it as a mind practice — that's just going to make you even more impactful, more effective on your endeavors."Many players do it for the mental aspect alone, saying yoga gets their mind right and prevents overthinking. It forces them to be in the moment, otherwise there's no way they'd be able to accomplish some of the poses, which make them feel better physically.One thing leads to another, much like the flow of a good sun salutation — moving from one pose to another."When you feel good, you play good," Lugo said. "When you play good, it's all good. They know that comes from so much more than just keeping your body in peak shape and condition." [url=http://www.nflshopoutlet.com/tennessee-titans]Custom Tennessee Titans Jerseys[/url]


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