There is too much fun stuff going on to just label one game the Game of the Night. First let’s start in New York City where No. 1 Rafael Nadal tries to complete a career Grand Slam when he takes on No. 3 Novak Djokovic. These two were supposed to play yesterday, but a rain delay has pushed it to 4 p.m. today. The extra day of rest should benefit Djokovic. On TSN.
Later on in NYC the New York Jets (0-0) get their season kicked off versus the Baltimore Ravens (0-0). The New Meadowland Stadium will host its first official Monday Night Football game with the Giants and Jets on tap with one more each in 2010. Be prepared for your socks to hit the floor when ESPN’s Mike Tirico tells you about the billion plus it took to build the place. The Jets are coming into 2010 with a ton of media hype behind them with HBO’s Hard Knocks, the major free agent signings (Tomlinson & Jason Taylor), the Santonio Holmes trade, and the fact they made the AFC championship game last year. Be scared of the hype, there are too many “Me, first” guys in that locker room. In addition to the fact that last year the Jets came out of no where, there’s a lot more pressure on second year quarterback Mark Sanchez and coach Rex Ryan. Baltimore for the first time in a long time has an offense that is expected to be in the top of the league but an aging defense with lot’s of holes. The Ravens won’t have super safety Ed Reed for the first six weeks of the year with Tom Zbikowski replacing him. Zbikowski, the former boxer should be more useful if someone has to close that giant gap in between Rex Ryan’s nose and chin then covering the Jets receivers. This game could be a slow one with low scoring and lot’s of penalties. Game time is 7 p.m. on TSN.
If you make it through the Jets/Ravens hard nose grind it out style the San Diego Chargers (0-0) play the Kansas City Chiefs (0-0) at Arrowhead Stadium. I really can’t remember when the last Prime time football game at Arrowhead was. All I know is it’s great to see it back in K.C. where the some of the best and most loyal fans in football live. The Chiefs are in year two of the Todd Haley/Matt Cassel experiment, after one year of mixed reviews Haley added two coordinators who had tremendous success in New England but failed to recreate that success with the Cleveland Browns (Romeo Crennel) and Notre Dame (Charlie Weis). Weis reunites with Cassel and will incorporate some of the same concepts that were used in New England. Cassel also has a shiny new toy to play with 2nd round pick Dexter McCluster, the former Ole Miss Rebel is dynamite in a 5’8 frame. McCluster will make plays from all different positions and will be a serious contender for Rookie of the Year. The Chargers will be without star receiver Vincent Jackson and left tackle Marcus McNeil with both holding out on contract disputes. The two missing players wont make much of a difference in this contest but quarterback Phillip Rivers will still have top receiver Antonio Gates and Malcolm Floyd at his disposal. Keep an eye on Chargers running back Darren Sproles (even though he’s only 5’6) despite San Diego trading up to select RB Ryan Matthews in the first round, the Chargers are paying Sproles close to 7 millions dollars this year. Expect the Chargers to earn every penny out of the diminutive back. 10:15 TSN.