Shanoff's WUC: Jets, Brees, 105K, Vols, USC

Mark SanchezToday's Calls: Rex Ryan vs. Tom Brady, Drew Brees vs. Matt Schaub, Lawrence Tynes vs. 105,000, Chad Ochocinco vs. Lambeau Leap, Pete Carroll vs. Jim Tressel, Tim Tebow vs. Monte Kiffin, Twins vs. Rangers and More. ↵

↵The Opening Pitch: "We're a football team that should be respected." ↵

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↵Rex Ryan doesn't have to worry about that anymore. After shutting down Tom Brady and Randy Moss and dispatching their biggest would-be rival, Mark Sanchez and the Jets are the AFC's most respected team (everyone must give the Saints their due). ↵

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↵Of the eight other remaining unbeaten teams in the NFL: ↵
↵— Giants: Needed classic Tony Romo implosion. ↵
↵— Vikings: Still have Brett Favre at QB. ↵
↵— Broncos: Worst 2-0 team ever? ↵
↵— Colts: Barely beat Jags in Week 1. ↵
↵— 49ers: Haven't earned rep yet. ↵
↵— Ravens: Needed big stop late. ↵
↵— Falcons: OK, look good. ↵
↵— Saints: OK, look VERY good. ↵

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↵None of them can claim the NFL's best victory of the first 1/8 of the season — soundly beating the prohibitive Super Bowl favorites. ↵

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↵Two weeks is not too early in an NFL season to see trends emerging: Like the Jets as the team to beat in the AFC. ↵

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↵NFL Week 2: ↵Big Story: Brees keeps dominating ↵

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↵Good news/bad news: NFL-record 105,000 ...watch Cowboys lose ↵

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↵Highlight: Ochocinco does Lambeau Leap ↵

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↵Milestone: Warner goes 24-for-26 ↵

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↵Question: Broncos worst 2-0 team ever? ↵

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↵Fantasy Studs: ↵
↵QB: Matt Schaub (357 yds, 4 TD, 0 INT) ↵
↵RB: Frank Gore (16 car, 207 yds, 2 TD) ↵
↵WR: Mike Sims-Walker (6 rec., 106 yds, TD) ↵
↵
↵

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↵Fantasy Dud: Tony Romo (13-for-29, 127 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT) ↵

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↵Top Rookie: Johnny Knox (6 rec, 70 yds, 1 TD) ↵

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↵Lions Count: 19 straight ↵

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↵Injury Watch: Brian Westbrook (ankle) ↵

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↵This year's Falcons: The 49ers? ↵

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↵Week 3's Big Story: Vick. Is. Back. ↵

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↵MNF: Whither the Wildcat? Is the formation revolutionizing the league or have defensive coordinators solved it? That alone makes tonight's Dolphins-Colts game worth watching. Miami needs a win; the Colts are coming off a struggle to beat the Jags. ↵

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↵CFB Weekend Wrap: "USC Loses To Inferior Team," knocking them out of national-title contention, has become a tradition — annually, the biggest upset of the year. Jim Tressel can't win the big one, but Pete Carroll can't win the small one — that's worse. ↵

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↵Meanwhile, here's a new one: Tennessee didn't play to win that game at Florida; they played not to get blown out. And they succeeded. Florida may be 3-0, but Lane Kiffin will brag he shut down the Gators and "only" lost by 10 at the Swamp — and boosters will buy it! ↵

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↵By the way: Monte Kiffin waltzes into college football and instantly claims status as the top Xs and Os strategist in the game. It helped that Tim Tebow's top three options were either ill (RB Demps, TE Hernandez) or injured (WR Thompson). ↵

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↵CFB Poll Gripe of the Week: Let me get this straight — USC loses to Washington, but USC is ranked 12th by the AP (10th by the Coaches) and Washington is ranked 24th by the AP (31st by the Coaches). ↵

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↵What's the point of playing the regular season if the pollsters are going to use their completely uninformed preseason polls as their stake in the ground for the rest of the year, despite everything that actually happens on the field? ↵

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↵My BlogPoll Ballot Top 5: (1) Alabama, (2) Cincinnati, (3) Florida, (4) Texas, (5) LSU. (For the entire Top 25 — and to make arguments to impact mine — go here. Cincy remains totally underrated, mainly because pollsters want to prop up their preseason pick that the Bearcats weren't rank-worthy.) ↵

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↵Mea culpa: I was totally wrong about my "Upset Special," taking Toledo over Ohio State. I will stop picking on the Buckeyes now. (Hey, OSU fans: Did you see how I defended Jim Tressel's record as compared to Pete Carroll's?) ↵

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↵MLB Talking Points: The Twins really needed that sweep in Minneapolis over the Tigers; they fell just short yesterday. With 13 to play, the Twins are 3 GB. ... The Rangers couldn't even get that close, losing two of three to the Angels in Arlington. That should be all for Texas (7.5 GB with 14 to play). ... Milton Bradley: Gift that keeps on giving. ↵

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↵NBA Refs Lockout: You sort of knew this would happen, and it is as bad for the NBA's PR in this battle as anything. ↵

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↵The Last Word: "People were talking about this like it was the Super Bowl in the second week of the season. We just came here to win a football game." ↵
↵— Antonio Pierce, on the craziness surrounding the opening Sunday for Cowboys Stadium. ↵

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↵Dan Shanoff writes The Wake-Up Call every weekday morning for SportingNews.com and blogs daily at DanShanoff.com. Got any comments, questions or feedback? Email Dan at shanofftsn-[at]-gmail-[dot]-com. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/danshanoff. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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