Admit it — you really missed this signature Monday event. You may even have suffered some withdrawal between January and the first half of this month.
But your salvation has returned, the Northeast Tarrant high school football picks. If you know anything about these selections, we don’t miss that often. That’s not say we have had our share of bad weeks. We have.
Typically, our winning percentage runs well past 80. In 2016, we finished 111-26 (.810). That said we are humble enough to appreciate that every year is different.
It’s just fun to know that football is here. It gets started on Thursday.
Birdville at Keller Central, 7 p.m. Thursday, Keller ISD Athletic Complex, Keller: The Chargers are coming off a playoff season and return 12 starters. They should be in playoff contention again. Grant Meek makes the switch from wide receiver to quarterback and has some options. Birdville missed the playoffs in 2016 and is borderline to make it in 2017.
Prediction: Keller Central 31, Birdville 17
Richland at Fort Worth Nolan Catholic, 7 p.m. Thursday, Doskocil Stadium, Fort Worth: The question Rebels head coach Ged Cates has to answer with this team is does he have the right answers on offense to replace what graduated. The Vikings feature 2019 standout defensive end Nana Osafa-Menseh. However, Nolan’s revamped offensive line has to demonstrate it can hold up, especially since Richland features linebacker and Texas A&M commit DeShaun White.
Prediction: Richland 35, Nolan 24
Haslet V.R. Eaton at Denton Braswell, 7 p.m. Thursday, C.H. Collins Complex, Denton: This is the second year of varsity competition for both programs. However, the Eagles are further along in their growth than the Bengals. Eaton has the talent to make a playoff push in District 6-5A. Braswell is still looking for the program’s first win.
Prediction: V.R. Eaton 37, Denton Braswell 14
Euless Trinity at Tulsa (OK) Union (1-0), 7 p.m. Friday, Tuttle Stadium, Tulsa: The Trojans challenged themselves with this game up north. They’re going to find out how much they have grown from the offseason. The Redskins already have the advantage of playing a game. They defeated Broken Arrow, 26-15, Saturday.
Prediction: Tulsa Union 27, Euless Trinity 23
Southlake Carroll at Broken Arrow (Oklahoma) (0-1), 7 p.m. Friday: Welcome to the Will Bowers era of the Dragons offense. Head coach Hal Wasson likes his quarterback’s moxie and leadership. The Dragons should present one of the best offensive lines in the area. Broken Arrow is a traditional power. Winning out of state road games is not a common occurrence. But the Dragons have done it.
Prediction: Carroll 26, Broken Arrow 21
Trophy Club Byron Nelson at Sachse, 7 p.m., Friday, Williams Stadium, Garland: The Bobcats have a new QB and are new throughout all of their skilled position players. There’s the potential to explode. But that’s going to be tough when the Mustangs are equally explosive and feature Mississippi State QB commit Jaylen Mayden.
Prediction: Sachse 46, Trophy Club Byron Nelson 32
Alvarado at Justin Northwest, 7 p.m. Friday, NISD Stadium, Justin: Life after the first double-digit winning season and first playoff win in school history continues for the Texans. The encore could be really interesting if senior quarterback Prince Mavula shows the maturity that’s expected of him.
Prediction: Justin Northwest 30, Alvarado 20
Colleyville Heritage at Aledo, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Bearcat Stadium, Aledo: This is the game of the week. The Panthers have their deepest team in school history. They just need to pick a starting quarterback to work with a great wide receiver duo of Ke’Von Ahmad and Kam Brown. Aledo features two of the better dynamic offensive players in sophomore running back Jase McClellan and junior wide receiver Jeffrey Carter. This one should be as good as the 2016 season opener.
Prediction: Aledo 37, Colleyville Heritage 33
Azle at Grapevine, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Mustang-Panther Stadium, Grapevine: Grapevine’s new defensive front gets it first test. However, the Hornets lost their big prospect in quarterback Ken Seals when he transferred to Weatherford (he has to sit out for 2017). On the other hand, Grapevine has the elder statesman of NET quarterbacks in senior Alan Bowman.
Prediction: Grapevine 34, Azle 13
Abilene Cooper at Keller, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Keller ISD Athletic Complex, Keller: After a nightmare 1-9 2016, hopes for the Indians are higher. The defense has the makings to be tougher. The offense has a ways to go. Cooper’s offense can score from anywhere. Watch the Cougars’ 6-4 wide out Myller Royals. He can go get the football.
Prediction: Abilene Cooper 28, Keller 20
Keller Fossil Ridge at Arlington Lamar, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Cravens Field, Arlington: The Panthers and Vikings played an entertaining game last year. Fossil Ridge won the shootout, 41-31. They also get wide receiver Stefan Cobbs back. That complements a potentially balanced running game. The Vikings missed the playoffs in 2016. They need a good start.
Prediction: Keller Fossil Ridge 35, Arlington Lamar 28
Coppell at Hurst L.D. Bell, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Pennington Field, Bedford: It’s Year No. 3 for Blue Raiders coach Mike Glaze. If Bell could pull off this shocker — and it would be — it could set the tone for a breakout season. The Cowboys, though, have a veteran offense returning. That’s the difference.
Prediction: Coppell 38, Hurst L.D. Bell 21
Grand Prairie at Haltom, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Birdville Fine Arts/Athletic Complex, North Richland Hills: The Buffalos are a little more inexperienced than last year when they began 3-1. Michael Black is the new starting quarterback. Now he just has to find his way. The Gophers were actually in the playoff race all the way to the last week of the regular season. They return 11 starters.
Prediction: Grand Prairie 23, Haltom 20
Irving Nimitz at Keller Timber Creek, 11 a.m. Saturday, Keller ISD Athletic Complex, Keller: The taste of success can create a craving. That’s what Timber Creek head coach Kevin Golden is hoping will happen with the Falcons, who are coming off their first winning season and playoff win in school history. Now, it’s up to the defense to do its part and make key stops along the way.
Prediction: Keller Timber Creek 45, Irving Nimitz 27
Happy football season. Let’s win them all!