Question of the day: Which of the four winless NFL teams will be the last to win a game? [Updated]
Reporters from around Tribune Co. tackle the question of the day, then you get a chance to chime in and tell them why they're wrong. Please check back throughout the day for updates.
Steve Svekis, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
All four have home games on Sunday. Detroit, which has been edged by the Eagles, Bears and Packers, is the best team of the four, and I favor the Lions in their home match-up against the resurgent-but-very-young Rams this week. San Francisco gets the Michael Vick-less Eagles and then the Raiders in winnable home games. That leaves Buffalo and Carolina, truly two of the worst teams in the league. Carolina gets the shell-shocked Bears, followed by the 49ers on a cross-country trip, and then the Panthers visit St. Louis. I think they have a decent chance to win a game there. Buffalo plays Jacksonville at home, but then goes to Baltimore and Kansas City after a bye. I see the Bills carrying an 0-fer for the longest period of time.
[Updated at 9:01 a.m.
Dan Pompei, Chicago Tribune
Of the four remaining winless teams in the NFL, the one with the best chance of staying winless the longest is the Bills. They should be at the front of the line in the Andrew Luck draft derby, and boy, could they use the Stanford quarterback. If the Bills don't upset the Jaguars this week, their next chance at a victory might not come for five weeks, when they host the Lions. On the subject of the Lions, they are a better team than their 0-4 record indicates. They are going to win some games soon, especially if they get Matthew Stafford back. The 49ers are another team that's too talented to be winless. The Panthers aren't in the same class, but they are well coached and resourceful enough to pull off an upset at some point soon.]
[Updated at 10:18 a.m.
Ken Murray, Baltimore Sun
Of the four winless teams in the league this season, there are two really bad teams (Bills, Panthers) and two teams that are better than their record (49ers, Lions).
I'll start by eliminating the 49ers and Lions from this competition. Both should win before November. The 49ers should get a win either at home against Oakland in Week 6 or at Carolina in Week 7. The Lions have winnable games against the Rams and Redskins at home in Weeks 5 and 8. At the very latest, the Lions will win at Buffalo on Nov. 14.
As for the two hapless teams this year, they both will go into December without a win, and the Bills have a legitimate shot at 0-16. Although they get the erratic Jaguars on Sunday at home and the Lions in November, I don't see them with a real chance to win until Dec. 12 against Cleveland in Buffalo.
But Carolina can top that if they don't knock off the Bears this week in Charlotte. They will face quarterback Todd Collins after an 11-sack loss to the Giants that cost them Jay Cutler. But the Panthers may not have Steve Smith, the only playmaker on their team. Advantage Bears. So I don't see the Panthers winning until Dec. 19 at home against the Cardinals. Last team to win: Carolina.]
[Updated at 12:54 p.m.
Sam Farmar, Los Angeles Times
It's entirely possible that all four winless teams could pick up their first victory this weekend. From most to least likely, that would be the Lions beating the Rams, the 49ers beating the Eagles, the Bills beating the Jaguars, and the Panthers beating the Bears. I think the Bills will go the longest without a victory. That said, they need to take advantage of their opportunity Sunday -- at home against a team coming off a hugely emotional victory over the Colts and primed for a letdown -- because their schedule isn't getting any easier. Their next three opponents are road games at Baltimore and Kansas City, and a "home" game against Chicago in Toronto. A year after leading the AFC in takeaways with 33, the Bills have one in their first four games. They need to pull this game from Jacksonville's grasp.]
Photo: Buffalo Bills' running back C.J. Spiller attempts to run during Sunday's game at Wilson Stadium. Credit: Richard Mackson / US Presswire