NFL Picks Week 14, 1:00 o’clock games

 

Miami Dolphins at Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5), O/U (41.5)

Miami is 0 and 2 since 1995 when they play the Steelers in Pittsburgh. The Dolphins have a 2-6 record in their last 8 games against Pittsburgh and are on a 5 game losing streak against the Steelers overall. Ben Roethlisberger seems to have a knack for winning games late in the season at home when they mean something and the Steelers are 18-6 ATS at home over the past 24 games.

Gonna go with Pittsburgh here to cover the spread.
Take the under 41.5.

Cleveland Browns at New England Patriots (-10), O/U (45)

New England plays every team tough at home and are coming in on a 5 game winning streak at home. The Browns are 1-4 against the Patriots in their last 5 meetings and are 1-4 against the spread versus the Patriots in their last 5 matchups. Cleveland is going off a tough loss to the Jaguars at home and now have to go on the road against a tough opponent in the Patriots.

Gonna take New England to cover the 10 point spread.
4 out of the past 5 games between Cleveland and New England have gone over the line. Gotta go with the OVER here.

Kansas City Chiefs at Washington Redskins (+2.5), O/U (44)

Kansas City and Washington have both not fared well against the spread in their last 6 games going just 1 and 5 ATS. Washington is on a 5 game losing streak against the Chiefs and haven’t covered the spread in those games either. With the Redskins struggling not looking to make the playoffs and Kansas City looking to get back on track against at team that head coach Andy Reid knows well, I expect this game to get oit of hand rather quickly.

Got to take the Chiefs to cover the 2 points.
Chiefs have gone UNDER the line in 14 of their past 20 games and Washington has gone UNDER the line in 8 of its past 12 at home. All signs pointing to the UNDER here.

Detroit Lions at Philadelphia Eagles (-2.5), O/U (53)

Detroit has gone under the line in 4 of their last six road games and the Eagles have also gone under the line in 5 of their past 6 homes games. Philadelphia is coming in hot and are 6 and 1 against the Lions at home in their past seven meetings. Detroit has covered the spread in the past two games against Philadelphia and with both teams looking to make a run at the playoffs its going to be a tight game. This game is going to come down to a field goal.

With that I’m going with the Eagles to win this one at home but the Lions WILL COVER the 2.5 point spread.
both defenses have been playing well of late which leads me to believe this is going UNDER the 53 point line.

Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5), O/U (44.5)

The Colts have beaten the Bengals 7 times in the last 8 meeting between the two and the Colts have covered the spread in those games 5 times. Cincinnati is just 2 and 6 against the spread when playing Indy at home in their last 8 meetings. The Bengals are coming off a 17 to 10 win over the Chargers in week 13 and they had their bye week during week 12. I think the Bengals are going to hit their stride this week and put up a bunch of points against the Colts defense through the air.

Take the Colts to cover the 5.5 in a low scoring game that will go UNDER the 44.5 point line.

Buffalo Bills at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2.5), O/U (41.5)

Truly a toss up here with two rookie quarterbacks going head to head and two pretty good defenses both against the run and pass. EJ Manuel is heading back to the state where he spent his college career and will have a bunch of fans there pulling for him and that will play a factor in this game. Tampa Bay is 5 and 1 in their last six home games against the Bills and the Bills haven’t cover the spread in their past 5 games in Tampa Bay.

Gonna go with the Bills to win this game covering that 2.5 point spread.
The Bucs and the Bills have both gone OVER the line in 6 out of the last 8 games. Take the OVER again here.

Oakland Raiders at New York Jets (-3), O/U (41.5)

The Jets have played better of late at home this season going 4 and 2 in their past 6 home games. and are also 4 and 2 in their past 6 games against the Raiders. The Raiders will be relying on Rashad Jennings with Run DMC out with an ankle injury against the leagues best run defense so expect Matt McGloin to be throwing the ball a lot against a Jets secondary that has been struggling.

Gonna take the Raiders to COVER the spread in a nail biter with the Jets sneaking out the win but by less than 3 points.
It’s going to be a fast paced game with a lot of drives that end with long touchdowns so I’ve gotta go with the OVER 41.5 point line.

Atlanta Falcons at Green Bay Packers (-3), O/U (46.5)

Atlanta has really struggled this year but they have picked it up of late and I believe that Mike smith’s team will finish the season strong. Green Bay is good at home but they are still without Aaron Rodgers and have been struggling to find the endzone on offense. I think that will continue this week for Green Bay’s offense and the Packers defense will have to try to find pay dirt somehow and keep Matt Ryan at bay. I like the Falcons to upset the Packers here and get a much needed win in regulation by a touchdown.

Take the Falcons against the spread.
Gonna have to go with the UNDER, as I don’t expect much scoring from the Packers offense but their defense will keep the Falcons offense under 30 points.

Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens (-6), O/U (42.5)

The Vikings have been playing surprisingly well in the past two weeks getting a win versus Chicago and tying with the Packers the week before that. Both of those games went into overtime. We could attest that to Minnesota’s defense and Adrian Peterson. The Ravens know that the Vikings are going to give AP a lot of touches and will probably challenge the Vikings wide receivers to beat them on the outside. Matt Cassel should be able to take advantage of the play action and hit his receivers and tight ends down the field. Baltimore has played really well at home all season but they haven’t scored that many points at home.

Gonna take the Ravens here to COVER the 6 point spread getting the win by a touchdown over Minnesota.
But I’m going to take the OVER on this 42.5 point line with both teams scoring into the twenties.

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Week 17: For all the Marbles

We find ourselves at 69% percent for the year ladies and gentleman. Let’s end this thing right shall we?

Marbles

 

SUNDAY

Only Sunday Games now, no whackass Thursday or Saturday Night games to mess with the NFL Original flow.

Eagles @ GIANTS – Win and get in with some help situation for the Giants. They will do their part against a once again Michael Vick-led Eagles squad. The G-Men have become notorious for stepping it up when they need to, but the Eagles have also been a thorn in their side as they showed earlier this year. Michael Vick is giving an audition to quarterback needy teams in this game, so expect him to play his hardest, unfortunately for the Giants and the fans at MetLife.

Buccaneers @ FALCONS – The Falcons will definitely rest some of their starters in this game, they may get the lead and then give it up later in the game must to the chagrin of the crowd, but they’d have to risk getting their starters injured. I don’t believe they are in the mindset of handing a game away to a divisional opponent and the Bucs are awful at stopping their opponents’ passing game. The Bucs on the other hand have some respect to play for and can show that their offense can match anybody’s. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Falcons accepted a loss here.

Jets @ BILLS – The merry-go-round keeps turning for the Jets. Their quarterback situation is a mess and only got messier when McElroy was sacked eleven times and, naturally, suffered a concussion. The Jets, yet again, overlooked Tim Tebow who has made a life off of winning games and turned back to Mark Sanchez. It is being reported Mike Tannenbaum will be fired on Black Monday for his mismanagement of this team. The Bills are going to finish another mediocre season, but with the help of CJ Spiller and Mario Williams will most likely beat up on the slugging Jets.

Ravens @ BENGALS – This is revenge. The Bengals are the hottest team that nobody is paying attention to right now. They have won six out of seven games and it appeared they would be looking to next year when they sat at 3-6, but since they have looked like a well rounded team with a front seven that has developed into a force. The Ravens are coming off a statement win against the Giants in which I and most others underestimated them. With Jim Caldwell behind the helms of the offense, it looked like a force that many have thought it could be for a few years now.

Bears @ LIONS – The Bears have crumbled and are all different types of banged up coming into this game. I believe the Bears play their way out of playoff contention and the Lions light up the scoreboard against the Bears.

Jaguars @ TITANS – The Jaguars played a very tight game with the Patriots last week while the were blown out by Green Bay. These teams have both played very poorly all year long. Montell Owens vs Chris Johnson and Chad Henne vs Jake Locker. Some seriously nice matchups here (sarcasm).

Texans @ COLTS – I am picking the Colts in this game for one reason, Chuckstrong. The Texans may play themselves out of the bye and homefield here. The Texans are definitely the better team here but there is a Magic surrounding these Colts this year and especially at home that I cannot seem to deny this last game of the year.

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Indianapolis Colts

Panthers @ SAINTS – Drew Brees last game of the year with news that Sean Peyton comes back next year with a nice big new contract? I’ll take him even with Cam Newton and his underrated defense playing solid down the stretch of the year. Both of these teams have underachieved all year, but the Saints find themselves in second place in the division after the Bucs have fallen apart. Maybe a new coach next year for the Panthers and Cam.

Browns @ STEELERS – No Steelers in the playoff, has a weird ring to it. The Steelers had a prime opportunity at home against the Bengals, but played poorly enough to lose that game. The Browns will be firing their head coach Pat Shurmur and starting fresh after this game. I would imagine that the Steelers would be firing Todd Haley after this year and the ineffectiveness of the offense since he came aboard. Big Ben will definitely love the support.

Chiefs @ BRONCOS – Broncos playing for the bye and possibly homefield, the Chiefs are playing a game. Let’s not joke around here. Peyton Manning has been either the Comeback Player of the Year or the MVP, whichever he doesn’t get Adrian Peterson will.

PACKERS @ Vikings – Aaron Rodgers is completing 70% of his passes with 14 touchdowns and 2 interceptions this year in dome games. The Packers put up 55 on the Titans last week for funsies. Adrian Peterson needs 209 yards to break Eric Dickerson’s single season rushing record and as much as I want this machine to break it, I don’t believe he will because they will be playing from behind, even though their running game is what drives them. I think if Leslie Frazier sticks with it then and keeps running the ball to AP they can have a chance, don’t make Christian Ponder throw the ball.

Dolphins @ PATRIOTS – The Pats are also playing for a bye here. Tom Brady will get back his favorite target on a limited basis in Rob Gronkowski. The Dolphins have been fiesty all year under first year coach Joe Philbin and rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill. With a win the Dolphins could end up with a .500 record, but it won’t happen in Foxborough. The ‘Fins have not played great games in the colder weather this season.

Raiders @ CHARGERS – Terrelle Pryor will get his first career start after the Carson Palmer was knocked around last week. The Raiders and Chargers met in their first game of the year, an ugly one, and paved the way for their ugly seasons. The Chargers are coming off a beating of the Jets where they sacked Greg McElroy 11 times. The Chargers will be looking at a new front office and coaching staff, finally, next year.

Cardinals @ 49ERS – The 49ers need this win to clinch the division. Brian Hoyer will get the start. The Cardinals defense has been fierce all year and is the main reason they have won a game in the past 11 weeks. The 49ers defense has been simply better and besides when they got blown up last week by the underrated and streaking Seahawks have been one of, if not, the best defense in the league.

Rams @ SEAHAWKS – Jeff Fisher has coached up this Rams team, mostly their defense. Something is in the defenses’ waters in the NFC West this year because they are all solid. Sam Bradford has been limited this year with developing and injury prone receivers (mostly his best target Danny Amendola). The ‘Hawks are coming off a destruction of the 49ers on national television last Sunday night and are aiming for 8-0 at home this year. No reason they won’t win this game as Russell Wilson continues his ridiculous rookie season, which has been unfortunately overlooked by many because of RGIII and Andrew Luck. Any other season he wins the Rookie of the Year, and he still might this year. He will tie or break Peyton Manning’s rookie single season touchdown record today.

Cowboys @ REDSKINS – Both of these teams came back from “dead” in the NFC East to now be playing for the division title on Sunday Night Football, second consecutive year that the division title will be decided on the last day on NBC. The Cowboys have ridden a red-hot Tony Romo until last week where the Saints played spoiler. The Redskins have now won 6 straight games since starting 3-6 and RGIII is not 100%, but he is still very dangerous with his arm. The home crowd will be pumped and I’m sure the Cowboys will make some mistakes and their defense is just as banged up as the Redskins.

Seems like I like the home teams in these Week 17 matchups.

siren

UPSET ALERT – Anything goes in these games, I’ll put everyone on Upset Alerts this week.

BYEAHHHHH!!!!

BYEAHHHHH!!!!

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SURVIVOR PICK – Let’s go with the Patriots here. (If picked already: 49ersBroncosSteelers)

Week 16: Merry Christmas to All … And to All Some Good Football!

Two more weeks till the postseason. Let’s finish this season strong shall we?

SATURDAY

FALCONS @ Lions – The Falcons just shellacked the New York Football Giants 52-0. No reason to think they won’t take it to the Lions on Saturday night. The story of the night will be Calvin Johnson going for Jerry Rice’s record. He only needs 182 yards, so there’s no reason Megatron shouldn’t break the record. Unfortunately for the Lions they will be staring at a 4-11 record after an impressive 10-6 record last year.

SUNDAY

SAINTS @ Cowboys – This is a dome after all everyone. The Saints are looking to play spoiler now and are coming off a nice shutout of their own against a good Bucs offense. This is usually the time where Romo and the Cowboys typically slip-up. I would say to expect a lot of points in the “Shootout” in Big D. three way tie in the east means the pressure is on the Cowboys and Romo and it’s time for them to prove their worth, but don’t expect them to.

Titans @ PACKERS – The Titans needed another ridiculous Mark Sanchez fumble and game in general to top the Jets on Monday Night Football. Chris Johnson showed the league he can still be as explosive as anyone on his touchdown run against the Jets. The Packers can seal up their division with a win here and don’t expect any less with the erratic Jake Locker leading his Titans into Lambeau. The Packers are going to lean on Ryan Grant in their running game after Alex Green went down with a concussion.

COLTS @ Chiefs – Typically  I don’t like to pick Andrew Luck away from home, but look at his competition. The Chiefs needed to lean heavily on Jamaal Charles each and every game but abandoned the run very quickly because their inept quarterbacks would lead them to three and outs. In addition the defense couldn’t keep them in games while being on the field the majority of the game. Look at the time of possession last week against the lowly Raiders, lopsided. Andrew Luck is taking his team into the playoffs after a magical season in which they have overcome him forcing turnovers.

Bills @ DOLPHINS – A football film expert has come out and said he can’t turn off Dolphins games. Interesting, huh? Joe Philbin has taken a team of small name guys besides Reggie Bush along with a rookie quarterback to a quiet 6-8 record and could go .500 for the season. The Bills keep flip-flopping between Ryan Fitzpatrick’s position with the team, i.e. is he the quarterback for the next few years. If the Bills defense can get healthy next year and they can fix their problems from this year, they could definitely compete in the AFC.

CHARGERS @ Jets – Greg McElroy is looked at as the Jets new savior. That’s a lot of pressure for a guy who had it pretty easy at Alabama with Mark Ingram, Trent Richardson and Julio Jones lined up with him and one of the best defenses college football had ever seen. Now he lines up with Shonn Greene, Bilal Powell and Jeremy Kerley, yikes. The Chargers are coming off a dud against the Panthers after upsetting the Steelers, I am picking the Chargers here against my gut on how bad the Chargers have been this season.

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REDSKINS @ Eagles – RGIII is back after his backup, Captain Kirk Cousins did his job and won a must-win game for the Redskins. Now they go to Philly to face the lifeless Eagles. Nick Foles played nicely against the Bucs bad secondary, but wasn’t as fortunate against the Bengals. The Redskins need this win as well, but the Eagles could play spoiler here.

Bengals @ STEELERS – Big game here in Pittsburgh. Bengals have not proven they can win the must wins yet, but the Steelers thrive off of these. Todd Haley needs to open up the playbook a little against a good Bengals front seven. If the Bengals win this game in Pittsburgh it’s a dagger to the Steelers playoff hopes and the AFC Playoff picture is sealed.

Rams @ BUCCANEERS – The Rams have been quietly good this year as they sit at 6-7-1. Their defense has been solid and Jeff Fisher has proven he is still a very good head coach. The Bucs have simply fallen apart in losing four straight games. Their offensive juggernaut was shut out by the leaky Saints defense last week and I wouldn’t expect the same this week, but Josh Freeman hasn’t been the same over the past few weeks.

Raiders @ PANTHERS – The Raiders ate the clock last week and Darren McFadden ate up every carry he could as well. They shutout the lowly Chiefs, while surprisingly holding Jamaal Charles to a mere ten yards. They won’t be able to keep up with the red-hot Panthers who are on a roll coming in having won three of their last four games and the offense is really clicking. Good Luck stopping “Scam” Newton Oakland.

PATRIOTS @ Jaguars – Haha won’t write too much here, besides the Pats are angry and Tom Brady is staring at the consecutive games with a touchdown record. Good Luck Mike Mularkey and Chad Henne in keeping up with Brady & Co.

Vikings @ TEXANS – The Texans provided themselves with a big win last week, taking the South division and nearly shoring up a bye for themselves come playoff time. Adrian Peterson needs 292 yards to break Eric Dickerson’s single season records. What a year for the guy who tore his MCL and ACL in the last week of the season last year. An absolute freak, this guy would have my vote for MVP of the league and I will surely be rooting for him to break the record. They can’t abandon the run today.

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GIANTS @ Ravens – The Giants need to turn that switch on that we have all been accustomed to seeing them do in the last few games. The Ravens have slipped and fallen quickly losing their last three games. Their defense is simply not the same as what it used to be and won’t get any better this week with more injuries racking up and Ray Lewis being kept inactive. The Giants are coming off a huge loss to the Falcons in Atlanta, but the Giants are one of those teams that can always overlook last week’s loss and next week’s game. There could be some scoring here.

Browns @ BRONCOS – The Browns are chippy and are never really out of their losses, but the Broncos will take this one easy as Peyton keeps making his case for the MVP. He will definitely win comeback player of the year. The Broncos defense is very dangerous and one of their big free agent signings in Tracy Porter is now coming off the bench because of the emergence of Tony Carter playing alongside of Champ Bailey.

BEARS @ Cardinals – This game will have too many sacks to keep track of and will be won by whichever defense plays better. The Cardinals are coming off a decimation of the Lions in Arizona. The Bears have now lost four straight games and look like a completely different team without Brian Urlacher and the one we saw at the beginning of the year. They need this win to stay on track in the playoffs.

49ers @ SEAHAWKS – The game of the week, and rightfully so NBC snatched it up in their flex schedule. I can’t pick against the ‘Hawks when they are at home. The Niners may be too happy after a very big win in Foxborough against the Patriots. Russell Wilson could be a sleeper for rookie of the year, and isn’t getting the press like Luck or Griffin, but should be considering his height limitations. Go ‘Hawks!

sirenUPSET ALERT – Today the BearsCowboys49ers and the Bengals on Upset Alert.

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

SURVIVOR PICKPatriots here and no questions asked. (If Picked already: PackersPanthers, and Colts).

Week 15: Who makes a Playoff Run?

We have placed ourselves back into double digit victory discussion, with a 10-6 week.

CHEEESEEEE!!!

CHEEESEEEE!!!

A lot has happened over the past week in the NFL, the former NFL Commissioner has dropped the suspensions of players related to the Saints bounty case and now Roger Goodell is talking about expanding the playoffs (of course to talk the heat off of himself for suspending players that were now exonerated for such actions.) Let’s jump into this week’s picks where now the going gets tough and the playoff contenders get going.

THURSDAY

BENGALS @ Eagles – The Eagles stunned the Buccaneers and their playoff hopes with 2 seconds left on the clock last week. The Bengals defense is better than the Buccaneers as a whole and won’t have a problem getting to rookie Nick Foles in the backfield. They must contain Bryce Brown, which seemed natural for those Bucs last week (they sport the #1 run defense, however.) Andy Dalton became the third quarterback, with Marino and Peyton Manning being the other two, to eclipse twenty touchdowns in his first two seasons. Dalton and A.J. Green have remarkable chemistry and now A.J. Green has to get over a sure touchdown drop last week in an upset by the Cowboys. Go Bengals here because they want and need it more.

SUNDAY

GIANTS @ Falcons – A lot to prove for both teams here. The Giants can prove they can still be the team to beat from the NFC, and the Falcons are trying to prove they have become that team. It is a rematch of the Wild Card playoff round last year in which the Giants romped the Falcons 24-2 in the Meadowlands. There will be no Ahmad Bradshaw so the rookie David Wilson will carry the load against a bad run defense. The Falcons come back to Georgia after a bad loss to Cam Newton and Cam Newton only, so they will be angry.

PACKERS @ Bears – After the first matchup the Bears went on a tear and it seemed they had climbed to the top of the NFC North, but in the past five weeks they’ve looked like a completely different team. That’s what injuries and a bad offensive line will do to you. The Packers on the other hand have ascended to the top of the NFC yet again. They are getting healthy at the right time and rookie running back Alex Green is beginning to step up. The Bears need to keep Jay Cutler upright, and that is going to be tough with Clay Matthews getting ready to play. Good Luck, Jay.

Ouch-town population you, Jay

Ouch-town population you, Jay

Redskins @ BROWNS – Kirk Cousins is going to get the start for the ‘Skins in Cleveland. Cousins has proved he can step into games and take over with his arm, not his legs like RGIII. The Redskins need him to be big, but it’s going to be tough against a suddenly good defense. Another rookie quarterback needs to step up for the ‘Skins against a rookie quarterback for the Browns. I think the Browns have been rejuvenated the past few weeks and it’s weird typing that. I take the Browns here in the upset.

Vikings @ RAMS – Adrian Peterson will continue to light up the world, but Christian Ponder will continue to be lit up by the world. The Rams defense is good and underrated, but are better against the pass than the run, lucky for the Vikings robot running back. Peterson needs to average 169 yards over the final three weeks to surpass Eric Dickerson’s rushing record. While I think Adrian Peterson is the greatest back of our generation, I don’t believe he will do it, as much as I want him to. I am picking the Rams because Sam Bradford > Christian Ponder.

Jaguars @ DOLPHINS – The Jaguars just called me up and asked me to play running back. I respectfully declined, of course. The Dolphins sport another underrated defense and a rookie quarterback that has shown flashes of maturity and serious potential. Chad Henne has a grasp on the starting job, but struggled mightily last week without his favorite target in Cecil Shorts. Shorts will be back this week, but I don’t think their defense is good enough to win this game. Montell Owens almost had 100 yards against the Jets last week, but the Dolphins sport a much better run defense. Dolphins based on a talent standpoint.

Buccaneers @ SAINTS – Bad thing for the Saints: Buccaneers rank #1 against the rush. Good thing for the Saints: They don’t typically run the ball very much especially at home. Josh Freeman and his Bucs are coming off a shocking loss Nick Foles’ Eagles that knocked them out of the playoffs. This will be a high-scoring game if you ever see one. Brees and Freeman better be locked into all fantasy lineups this week. Brees in the Superdome trying to ruin playoff lives from here on out!

BRONCOS @ Ravens – Peyton is doing what Peyton does. Just running things in the NFL week by week. Moreno has stepped up mightily since Willis McGahee went to the I.R. and the defense has been steady all year as a top 5 NFL defense. The Ravens’ record does not indicate how the good the team is, because their 9-3 record is an overestimation of this team. Their defense is not the same and they need to realize it, their offense just fired its offensive coordinator after another disappointing year, except this time they won’t give the ball to their best player as much. The Broncos are the better team and it will show in Baltimore today.

Colts @ TEXANS – I have to be honest, I like those Texans letter-man jackets. I have to be honest, I can’t believe they worse those. The Texans defense was embarrassed on national television. The Patriots exploited all of their weaknesses with all the injuries they have suffered. The Colts are coming off another comeback win against a bad Titans team. Andrew Luck is still playing poorly on the road, but against this shaky secondary it’s hard to not believe in him putting up numbers today. The Texans are still the better team and will come out with full force in Reliant Stadium.

SEAHAWKS @ Bills – Seattle is underrated let’s get that out of the way. “Pint-sized” quarterback Russell Wilson has led this team to becoming a contender, the biggest problem is, most of their wins come at home. The Bills excel at one thing and that’s running the ball, and the Seahawks excel both defensive aspects. The Seahawks will make the playoffs, unfortunately for them they will not host any games. The Bills just lost at home to the Rams after having the lead. The Bills front-office won’t stop talking about the status of their franchise quarterback and it’s a flip-flop every week. They should focus on their weekly opponent instead of on who their quarterback NEXT year is going to be.

Darren Sharper ... Hold ma  ****

Darren Sharper … Hold ma ****

LIONS @ Cardinals – The Cardinals defense has to keep them in this game. Good luck! It’s the Ryan Lindley show again in ‘Zona. Let’s see how good the Lions defense looks this week against the Cardinals because typically they make everyone look like top 10 defenses. Patrick Peterson wants one on one against Megatron who is moving toward Jerry Rice’s single-season record. Imagine if the rushing and receiving record are broken in one year, but two non-playoff teams, intriguing.

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Panthers @ CHARGERS – This may not be as high-scoring as everyone would think. The Chargers sport a pretty good defense that was able to abuse the Steelers last week before they gave up some garbage time touchdowns. Cam Newton is on a tear right now, but I believe that won’t continue today in San Diego. However, Philip Rivers probably won’t play well either. I think this will be pretty ugly from a bunch of underachieving teams.

STEELERS @ Cowboys – Toss-up of the week here. I think the Steelers know how to win these games and the Cowboys typically lose these even at home. I don’t believe Dez will make that big of an impact. The Cowboys need this win or they can count themselves out of the playoffs, on the other hand the Steelers can put themselves out of the playoff spot with a loss. Their bigger game is next week against the Bengals, but they usually don’t look ahead.

Chiefs @ RAIDERS – The “yikes” game for the week. Expect a lot of Jamaal Charles and a lot of punts. Both of these teams have been hopeless causes all year and the Chiefs were destroyed by the Browns last week, while the Raiders lost to the Broncos before the game even started. I pick the home team in this matchup.

49ers @ PATRIOTS – This is the game of the week, but the Patriots showed they are still the team to beat. They took it to the Texans and early. The 49ers better be ready to go as soon as the ball is kicked. Kaepernick has come down to earth recently and hasn’t had to take the games over like he did the first couple of games. The 49ers are 1st in defense and the Pats are 1st in offense, so what will give?

MONDAY

JETS @ Titans – Easily the worst Monday Night game of the year. I pick the Jets because the Titans are bad and the Jets are better. Mark Sanchez didn’t play well again last week when the Jets inched out a win against the Jaguars without their best receiver. Jake Locker is the most erratic quarterback in the NFL. The guy looked great last week after looking like a college quarterback since coming back from his injury. Mark Sanchez cannot turn the ball over for the Jets to win, but for the Titans to win Chris Johnson has to go off and Kenny Britt cannot be dominated by Antonio Cromartie.

siren

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Texans, the Vikings , the Falcons and the Redskins on upset alery.

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

 

Survivor Pick – First of all if you’re still in survivor pools, just good for you. This week I’ll take the Lions to keep it going. (If picked already: BengalsTexans, and Seahawks.)

Week 14: Nestle Crunch Time!

The double digit wins streak is gone with a 9-7 record last week. Some surprise victories did us in. This week should be better as we have come to the point of the season where no surprises happen, typically. On the year we are sitting at  132-59-1 for a 69% correctness.

Let’s get into it with only four weeks left!

THURSDAY

BRONCOS @ Raiders – This will be a “snoozer”. The Broncos are missing their number one running, but gave an enormous workload to newly anointed starter in Knowshon Moreno. The Raiders’ Carson Palmer is having a good year, but most of his statistics are coming in garbage time. This should be an easy win for the rolling Broncos.

SUNDAY

Rams @ BILLS – I am picking the Bills because they are playing at home and I am certain it is cold outside. The Rams defense isn’t as solid as their run defense, and the Bills are starting to realize their best game-plan is to not force Ryan Fitzpatrick to win them the game, but rather leave it up to their run game. The Rams think they have a shot at the playoffs, but not if Danny Amendola doesn’t play. I want to pick the Rams because they are underrated in my book and bad on the road, 1-3-1. It’s going to be cold and rainy in Buffalo, not good for a passing game.

Cowboys @ BENGALS – The Cowboys just lose their starting nose tackle and now are down to their third string. Tony Romo is going to have a tough time against the Bengals front four, which will have an easy time against the Cowboys bad offensive line. The Bengals will be able to run the ball and throw the ball on a banged up and now very underachieving Bengals defense. It may be a high scoring game however and both teams need the game to stay alive in the playoff chase.

Chiefs @ BROWNS – Only a few words can describe this game: “Man, I hope this isn’t televised.” The Chiefs are coming off a very emotional win, which yours truly predicted correctly. Jamaal Charles needs to go over 100 yards, because nobody should expect the same game from Brady Quinn we saw last week against a bad Panthers defense. The Browns defense is underrated and with Joe Haden guarding Dwayne Bowe, don’t expect much production out of him. The Chiefs will need to have an answer for Trent Richardson and the new #1 receiver on the Browns, Josh Gordon.

Titans @ COLTS – The Titans can’t keep the ball on offense. Jake Locker was looking like he could develop into a good quarterback at the beginning of the season, but it appears that the injury has hindered him. Chris Johnson might have a field day with this Colts run defense, enough to keep them in this game. Andrew Luck will lead his team to another home victory and hopefully with his own touchdowns (for my fantasy team). No Donald Brown for the Colts, which leaves them with a very sub-par running game.

BEARS @ Vikings – I know Brian Urlacher is the leader of the defense, but there are enough play-makers on that team to take over the role. Jay Cutler’s offensive line needs to play better in the face of trash-talking by both teams opposing lines. Cutler will keep abusing Brandon Marshall in the target department as long as their both still living. The Vikes will once again lean heavily on their robot running back, Adrian Peterson. If he can take the pressure of Christian Ponder the Vikings have a chance.

Chargers @ STEELERS – The coach and general manager of the Chargers have already been named soon-to-be victims of the disappointing season experience in San Diego. They were unfortunate to arrive in Pittsburgh with Big Ben returning to good health. The Steelers are more than happy to have their signal caller back healthy so that they can leave their turnover-happy woes behind them. Expect the Steelers to win this one easily.

Eagles @ BUCCANEERS – Nick Foles is starting to look better and not completely incompetent in that offense. Bryce Brown is running a muck in the NFL and seems to be the hottest back besides Adrian Peterson in the NFL. They’re bigger problem now is their failing leaky defense that will get no mercy from the Bucs juggernaut offense. The Bucs need this game to stay in playoff contention because with a loss and any teams in front winning can count themselves out. Doug Martin has seen the box stacked a lot in the past few weeks.

Ravens @ REDSKINS – The Ravens’ record does not show their fault, but the highlights and tapes do. They are not as solid as their 9-3 record would have you believe, but they find a way to win games. Joe Flacco is having another disappointing season, and Cam Cameron appears to not want to lean on Ray Rice every game, which worked in the past (head-scratcher as to why you wouldn’t.) RgIII played a great game Monday night, but was helped certainly by a fluke play on the first touchdown and then by the ineptness of the Giants’ offense in the fourth quarter. The Ravens won’t have an answer for him, but expect some points here.

qm rg

FALCONS @ Panthers – The Falcons are coming off a huge win to their “daddy”. This is a typical let down game, but the Panthers just hit rock-bottom after losing to the Chiefs. Asante Samuel probably won’t play here leaving the Falcons somewhat thin in the secondary. The Panthers haven’t beaten the Falcons in three years now. Matt Ryan isn’t putting up the same numbers as he was at the beginning of the year, because teams have adjusted to the passing game plan of the Falcons. Expect some scoring here as well.

JETS @ Jaguars – Another ugly won that I know will be on television in New York. The Jets turned to Greg McElroy last week, only to turn back to Mark Sanchez (which I predicated) this week, but this is a completely different defense they faced last week. The Jags are down to their fourth string running back and will be without Cecil Shorts. Cromartie will be pinned to Justin Blackmon leaving the Jags only weapon Mercedes Lewis. This will not be pretty or enjoyable unless your a Jets fan.

Saints @ GIANTS – The Giants are doing exactly what we’ve come to expect. Roll through the first half of the year and then start to swoon, but win the games they need to in order to find their way into the playoffs on a hot streak. The Saints need this win to even have a chance, but it’s a very slim chance. Drew Brees does not play as well outside as he does indoors, but coming off 3+ interception days (he’s had five of them), Drew Brees has thrown 17 touchdowns and 4 interceptions (not good for the Giants’ secondary). Expect the Giants pass rush to disrupt Brees because they couldn’t get to RGIII last week and they don’t have consecutive bad games.

Dolphins @ 49ERS – This 49ers defense will have their way with rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill, especially Aldon Smith (the NFL’s sack leader) because Jake Long is now on the I.R. Colin Kaepernick is coming off a bad game against the Rams defense and almost another tie. The Dolphins are scrappy so this might be closer than one would think, but the 49ers should take this one.

Cardinals @ SEAHAWKS – Has one team ever had more home-field advantage in a single season? The 12th man in Seattle is something else and it will continue this week with the lowly Cardinals coming into town. John Skelton has been re-injected into the #1 spot on the depth chary after Ryan Lindley’s awful and abysmal performance, which left many wondering why Ken Whisenhunt didn’t replace him at halftime. The Seahawks are coming off a huge win against the Chicago Bears in overtime and will look to keep a hold on the last wild card spot in the NFC.

Lions @ PACKERS – The Lions are definitely the most disappointing and under-achieving team this year. Lots of talent, lots of promise but not enough of the “it” factor to put games away and keep themselves winning like last year. It’s a shame because Calvin Johnson’s possible MVP year is going to waste. Megatron is on pace to break Jerry Rice’s receiving yards record in a single season, and most likely won’t slow up even facing more double teams now that the Lions are depleted at wide receiver. The Packers are just sledding along toward the playoffs with a bunch of injuries of their own, but their guys will be healthy come playoff time.

216105_352829598125338_679964590_n

MONDAY

PATRIOTS @ Texans – This is a fantastic game and definitely the game of the week. Possibly the best matchup ESPN picked for Monday Night Football all year long. The Pats certainly miss Gronkowski, but Aaron Hernandez is getting healthier and Tom Brady will definitely find much more now. Their defense has been getting better and has been forcing a large amount of turnovers. The Texans are sitting at a nice 11-1 with a playoff spot locked up. Their defense is slowing up with all of their injuries and the Patriots offense will definitely exploit this. Expect a barn-burner here.

siren

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Falcons, the Bearsand the Ravens on Upset Alert.

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

SURVIVOR PICK – Colts (If Picked already: Seahawks, and Broncos)

 

Week 13: No Mo No Shave!

Men’s favorite month and women’s least favorite month has come to an end and it’s time to get rid of those furry things on your face gentleman. The playoffs are coming in the NFL quickly and this season has definitely flown by. We come into this week after a 10-6 showing last week. Definitely not the best we’ve had, but the double digit wins won’t stop rolling in.

Here we go ....

Here we go ….

THURSDAY

SAINTS @ Falcons – The Saints need this game to stay alive, but the Falcons might need this game for the respect and to show that they have gotten over that divisional hump that has haunted them since Drew Brees arrived in the NFC South. The last game was a nail-biter and a eye catcher for the NFL and I don’t expect any less from this one. The Saints will win because they need it to stay alive, but I am honestly not sure about this because the Falcons play so much better at home.

SUNDAY

Jaguars @ BILLS – It’s one thing to beat a bad Titans team at home, but it’s another thing to go to freezing cold Buffalo and beat a bad Bills team. The Bills looked flat against the Colts defense and the Jaguars looked like a decent team against the lowly Titans. Chad Henne has sparked some life into Mike Mularkey’s team, but now with both of the Bills running backs healthy, there’s no reason to believe they won’t be able to handle the Jags at home.

Seahawks @ BEARS – The Seahawks are a different team at home than they are away. I think they can pull the upset here because of their defense and how banged up the Bears offensive line is, but Russell Wilson cannot turn the ball over, which is nearly impossible to do against this Bears defense. However, Colin Kaepernick did it and he is mobile and elusive, just like Wilson is so who knows. Brandon Marshall has been targeted 121 times by Jay Cutler, you think they have a nice connection?

Colts @ LIONS – Another team that plays completely different at home compared to away from home. Andrew Luck and the Colts are bipolar and cannot seem to find grounding away from home with a 2-3 record and a 5-1 record at home. However, Andrew Luck has been an outstanding rookie this year. On the other side of the ball the Lions have not performed up to the expectations placed upon them this year. I see the Colts away woes to continue as the Lions offensive fire power will be too much to handle and the Lions vicious defensive line will be at Andrew Luck.

Vikings @ PACKERS – The Packers got rolled by the Giants at MetLife Stadium Sunday night. They might have been better off not showing up. They have key injuries on defense and some on offense, but it’s no excuse to play so poorly and they know that. They will definitely be a different team this Sunday against their division rivals from Minnesota. Adrian Peterson still had a great game even after fumbling the ball twice to the Bears. This game is always a hard-fought win for whomever comes out on top, but I fully expect the “Cheeseheads” to take a few Lambeau leaps this Sunday.

TEXANS @ Titans – Some of the experts have been saying that the Texans have been walking a fine line, and they have been and that’s the reason I picked them to lose last week. However, when you are gifted a game like they were like last week I don’t see this team taking anything for granted this weekend. The Titans are also not as talented as the Detroit Lions. The Titans are coming off a bad BAD loss to the Jaguars and things can’t get worse, so why can’t they win?

Panthers @ CHIEFS – Two days ago I would’ve picked the Panthers hands down with the way this Chiefs team is playing. After the sad passing of Javon Belcher I cannot pick against the emotional team here. This Chiefs team is not better than their opponent, but emotion wins in any fight. The Panthers allowed Bryce Brown and the Nick Foles led Eagles to stay in a game they should have handled with ease on Monday Night last week. I think the Chiefs will be ready to play Sunday for their “brother”.

49ERS @ Rams – Man I hope this game doesn’t end in a tie. Colin Kaepernick has been exciting to watch, but now Alex Smith has been benched for playing the way Jim Harbaugh has asked him to and because he got a concussion. Seriously? They are winning their games, not that they weren’t before. The Rams #1 option will not be playing as he is hurt again, that is Danny Amendola. This just makes the sledding that much tougher for the Rams, but I can see this being a close game again as long as Bradford keeps the ball out of the 49ers’ defense hands.

PATRIOTS @ Dolphins – The Pats have blown up scoreboards the past two weeks and I have no doubt it won’t stop this week in warm Miami. The Patriots defense is forcing turnovers, which they’ve been known to do over the year and will definitely continue Sunday against rookie Ryan Tannehill. This Dolphins team has been scrappy all year long, but it’s time for the Pats to put a stake through their season. The addition of Aqib Talib has already helped the Patriots secondary.

Eerie isn't it?

Eerie isn’t it?

Cardinals @ JETS – I want to pick the Cardinals, but I don’t know which one of their quarterbacks is actually going to get playing time in this game. As one of my friends told me, when the Jets win, they win handily. If Ryan Lindley starts the Jets win in a blowout, but if anyone else starts it’ll be a harder win for the Jets, who have had more media attention for the past few years than any other underachieving team. Tim Tebow will not be dressed, but Greg McElroy finally will be. Why not give the Alabama champion a shot?

Buccaneers @ BRONCOS – Tough loss for the Bucs against the Falcons last week. They should have won that game plain and simple, as many teams should have against the Falcons. Josh Freeman didn’t throw a touchdown pass last week, but his offense still put up a ton of yards. The Broncos are coming off a disappointing lackluster performance in Kansas City. Even though they won the game, it looked like the worst complete game for Peyton Manning this year. Knowshon Moreno has emerged as the new starter since Willis McGahee’s injury, surprising a lot of people by leaping up the depth chart.

Cleveland @ RAIDERS – Two bad teams at 3-8 and I’m going with the home team. The Browns have been in every game they’ve played and just beat the Roethlisberger-less Steelers. So, this is now a let down game in a place that many teams find it tough to win, the Black Hole. The Raiders are struggling all around on defense and Carson Palmer has to force everything to try and get his team back in the game, but he has now thrown for over 3,000 yards with 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Raiders here because they are at home.

BENGALS @ Chargers – Andy Dalton has led this team in surprising fashion with a new high-powered offense. The Defense is coming along for these Bengals, after playing poorly in the first half of the season. Philip Rivers and Norv Turner can’t turn this season around, or finish it any sooner. If they lose this game or the Broncos win the Chargers are basically eliminated from playoff contention because one of the teams they are chasing would be the one who beats them today. Norv Turner is finished in San Diego, finally.

Steelers @ RAVENS – No Ben, no win for the Steelers. The Defense has been doing anything and everything to stay in games, but when you are on the field for as long and as much as this defense is, you are bound to lose. The offense turned the ball over eight times last week and that never bodes well. Ray Rice converted a 4th and 29 last week on a check down pass, and that speaks more for the Chargers season than anything. Ravens win this one because Charlie Batch is no Ben.

True Story

True Story

Eagles @ COWBOYS – On Nick Foles first drive against the Cowboys a few weeks ago, he hit Jeremy Maclin on a bomb. Since then it’s been forgettable for Foles. He let Bryce Brown do the work last week against the Carolina Panthers, but he will have to make some throws against a much better Cowboys defense this week. Tony Romo tried his hardest to bring the Cowboys back from dead on Thanksgiving against the Redskins. With DeMarco Murray expected back, Jason Garrett gets a capable back in his backfield. Tony Romo’s job becomes a little easier now as long as DeMarco can stay healthy.

GIANTS @ Redskins – The Giants are road warriors. RG3 is a beast. This will be a good Monday Night matchup with two divisional foes who each need this win. The Redskins need it to stay alive in the playoff race because the Wild Card is closing quickly in this tough NFC, but the Giants need this win to pad their lead as their schedule becomes harder over the next three weeks with the Saints, the Falcons and the Ravens looming. The Giants looked like the Champs last week against a 38-10 thrashing of the Packers and RG3 didn’t look like a rookie against the Cowboys in Dallas on Thanksgiving. Giants in a squeaker here.

siren

 

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Giants, the Panthers ,the Bears, and the Colts on Upset Alert. The Giants lost both games last year to the lowly Redskins, but their better offensively this year. The Panthers are playing a defeated team that was just struck by tragedy and it’s always to play a team with that kind of emotion. The Colts are just not the same playing away from home. The Bears offensive line is still horrendous and the Seahawks defense is still very physical.

tom-hanks-in-cast-away

 

SURVIVOR PICK – Patriots (If Picked already: Texans, Cowboys and Ravens).

Week 11: Shave your Season!

10-3-1 … thanks a lot Rams and 49ers. The double digit wins just won’t stop coming, and I won’t stop taking them if they’re offered.

 

LEGGGO!!!!

THURSDAY

Dolphins @ BILLS – It’s cold in Buffalo. Tannehill hasn’t been somewhere this cold. Both of these offenses are turnover prone and the Bills will be without one of the heads of their two-headed monster. For some reason Joe Philbin has been chopping down on his best running back’s carries. This is a recipe for loss. The Bills will take this game in frigid Buffalo.

SUNDAY

Cardinals @ FALCONS – This Falcons team is pissed. Undefeated season gone at the hands of a despised rival, who doesn’t call themselves rivals because “they own them”. The Saints took it to the Falcons and beat them at their own game. The Cardinals are reeling and I don’t see it stopping soon, especially this week. The Falcons at home are +10 and I definitely believe they can cover. Expect some offensive fireworks for one team.

Browns @ COWBOYS – Tony Romo is fire in November, we’ll talk about December in a few weeks because we know how that typically goes. The Browns keep struggling every year with mismanagement under Holmgren. The Cowboys will most likely win their games in November and start bailing their dedication for a comeback in December.

PACKERS @ Lions – Old foes meet again in Ford Field. The Packers are coming off their bye, but still aren’t really getting healthy besides Jordy. However, they’ve been fine without the guys they are missing, but they haven’t really run across the offense that they’re about to see in the dome. The Lions lost a real heart-breaker to the Adrian Petersons last Sunday. Stafford will definitely be looking to light up the scoreboard against his Cheesehead adversary.

BENGALS @ Chiefs – Arrowhead used to be one of the toughest places to win a game, but unless Jamaal Charles has well over 100 yards, I don’t think the stadium will have that kind of affect or magic on today’s game. The Bengals embarassed the Super Bowl Champion Giants last week at home, and I’m sure Marvin Lewis won’t let his young team get head of themselves sitting at 4-5 and now with a golden opportunity to seize a playoff spots from a Steelers team that is without their quarterback. Also, good luck to the Chiefs stopping AJ Green.

Jets @ RAMS – Sorry my Jet fan friends, you’re team just looks awful. The Rams defense will overpower the Jets anemic offense. Greg Zuerlein will have at least one fifty yard field goal. The Jets need a change, somewhere and soon. The Rams probably have a bad hangover from their tie with the division leader. They had the game won, but just didn’t want it. They will be looking for blood today at home against a struggling Jets squad.

Greg the Leg

Eagles @ REDSKINS – Nick Foles is not the answer. Michael Vick is not the problem. He’s never been a quarterback who has excelled at reading the defense, but rather baiting the defense into changing their own scheme, but without a line the defense is free to do what they please and get into the backfield. Even LeSean Mccoy is having big issues this year trying to get out of the backfield while he is being hit more than 30% of the time behind the line. RGIII enjoyed his bye after losing to Cam Newton two weeks ago and let’s see how he and his coaches handled their time off.

BUCCANEERS @ Panthers – The Bucs find themselves in the fight for a wild card spot, but will have to hold off the furiously charging Saints. Josh Freeman is leading the third highest scoring offense in the league, who would’ve thunk it? He now leads a Fantasy Football juggernaut. The Panthers will be experiencing a lot of changes in a few months, and the sledding won’t get easier this weekend.

Jaguars @ TEXANS – This is a snoozer. MJD just sit back and see how this team misses you and draw up your own contract. Enough said.

SAINTS @ Raiders – Drew Brees is leading his team back from dead. They must go to the Black Hole and take it to the Raiders struggling defense. The Saints defense isn’t playing lights-out, but they are coming together at the right time and making plays when they need to. Carson Palmer still isn’t turning the ball over as much as last year, but without Darren McFadden this team lacks a big play running game and now they have to face a Saints team that’s simply on fire.

Here they come …

Chargers @ BRONCOS – Don’t expect any revenge, but don’t expect the same comeback because the Broncos will be ahead early. Philip Rivers has found some gold in a healthy Danario Alexander, but Peyton Manning is looking like a possible Comeback Player of the Year and an MVP candidate. If they Chargers want to pull out the upset and make the AFC West a race, Rivers needs to not turn the ball over  and the Chargers defense needs to stop Peyton … good luck.

Colts @ PATRIOTS – This will be a great game. Luck has shown the poise of a veteran and has won some big games already. Bill Belichick and his team have not been as sound this year and they are not better than the other two top teams in the AFC. Don’t be surprised by a shootout in Foxborough.

RAVENS @ Steelers – This would’ve been the game of the week, but without Big Ben it’s the Ravens versus the running back committee of the Steelers. They could definitely do some serious damage against the  a weak Ravens run defense. This will still be a good game, just because it’ll be physical and these teams hate one another, but I can’t see Byron Leftwich pulling out a win against the Ravens. Hopefully Big Ben gets better and thank god his injury wasn’t worse.

OUCH TOWN POPULATION YOU BRO!!

Bears @ 49ERS – This is another game with an injured quarterback not being able to play, but this backup has proven in the past few years he can win some games. Don’t be surprised if the Bears pull out a win here, but I think the Niners at home after that horrible tie will be on their game. These are two of the top defenses in the league and love to hit hard. Expect a similar game to the Bears and Texans last weekend.

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Patriots on Upset Alert because of what Andrew Luck brings to the table. I am also putting the Bears on Upset Alert, because their record is better than the 49ers.

 

SURVIVOR PICK – Texans, no questions asked. (If Picked already:

Week 9: Power Outage

So, we made it to 11 wins again. 11-3 last week, and like Train 777 we are “Unstoppable” right now!

Watch Out!

Our prayers go out to those who have been hurt and have been severely affected by Hurricane Sandy. Please donate what you can and do not forget those in need in their time of biggest need!

Let’s get to it!

THURSDAY

Chiefs @ CHARGERS – The Chiefs are historically bad, never possessing a lead at any point in regulation this season. They want to start Brady Quinn over the man they’ve paid millions of dollars to. The Chargers did their best Chiefs impression last week losing to the Browns 7-6 in ugly weather. The Chargers won’t find their path to victory so slippery this week in an easy win.

BRONCOS @ Bengals – Peyton Manning is picking up where he left off two seasons ago. The Broncos look like a top five team this year and definitely top two in the AFC. Their offense and their defense are complete and are on a roll, their defense held the high-powered Saints to a mere fourteen points. The Bengals are coming off their bye and they are at home, but are simply outmatched. Champ Bailey figures to shadow AJ Green, which will be interesting to watch, but it won’t matter unless the Bengals defense can stop Peyton.

RAVENS @ Browns – The Ravens are coming off their bye and have hopefully, for their own sake, have fixed their defensive problems. The ball needs to go to Ray Rice more, Flacco can be a good, possibly great quarterback but Ray Rice needs to be the centerpiece, plain and simple. The Browns, pulled out an ugly win last week. They just aren’t good, but Brandon Weeden is coming along, but needs to be quicker since he’s already 28 years old. Keep throwing the ball to Josh Gordon and good things will happen.

Cardinals @ PACKERS – The Cardinals can’t keep their quarterback upright and you know Clay Matthews is salivating at this fact. The Packers didn’t look great last week against the lowly Jags, but what’s to expect when your two best receivers are injured. They will roll this week, no worries Cheeseheads.

BEARS @ Titans – The Bears squeaked out a win against the underachieving Panthers. They need to be better on offense for four quarters if they want to be real contenders even if their defense is lights out. The Titans are coming off a tough loss to the Colts in Indy. The Titans have relied heavily on Chris Johnson the past few weeks as it appears he may be headed back to his 2K form, but it won’t be easy against this Bears defense.

Dolphins @ COLTS– The Colts get to stay at home after beating the Titans in a tight game that went to overtime. The Dolphins are coming off a huge win in New Jersey after shellacking the Jets. The Dolphins’ defense is the biggest story this year, their run defense is solid, but their pass defense is middle of the road. They have found ways to win their games and sit at 4-3. The Colts have looked better with Andrew Luck under center, but their defense just isn’t all that good. This is a tough match-up but I’ll take the grittier team. I am switching my pick and picking the emotional team because Chuck Pagano will be in the stadium to watch the Colts.

Panthers @ REDSKINS– RG3 drew comparisons to Cam Newton when he came into the league earlier this year, but he is playing better than Cam did. He doesn’t turn the ball over as much as Cam did and he seems to be in control more; his offense has been shaped to match his skill-set. The Panthers definitely played their best game against the Bears, but could not finish. The ‘Skins are coming off an ugly loss to the Steelers, expect a whole different game from the Shannies.

LIONS @ Jaguars – The Lions are fighting their way back to being relevant, but it’s a long road ahead. Stafford seems to be improving as he lit up a good Seahawks secondary last week en route to a big win for the Lions. The Jaguars fought wholeheartedly against the Packers, but with the lack of talent they never really had a chance, much like this week unless Rashad Jennings can simply go ballistic.

Bills @ TEXANS – Both teams are coming off their bye, and Mario Williams is going back “home”. It won’t matter. The Texans are going to beat the Bills handily, expect a lot of throws from Mr. Harvard. The biggest question will be, does Mario Williams get a standing ovation or hear the boo birds?

Steelers @ GIANTS – Battle of the 2004 NFL Draft! Big Ben has two rings and so does Eli, but that doesn’t matter now. What matters now is who will be the better team Sunday. The Steelers have not been able to keep their starting running backs healthy as Isaac Redman will be starting this Sunday after coming off a good win against the Redskins. The Giants were rolling into halftime against the Cowboys in Dallas, but started to crumble. Then, Captain Eli led his team to victory as the Giants got lucky as Dez Bryant put his hand out of bounds on a nice throw from Tony Romo with less than 20 seconds left in the game. 

BUCCANEERS @ Raiders – The Bucs rolled their hosts in Minnesota last Thursday. They also just traded away their best defensive player, also an off the field problem, in Aqib  Talib. Their offense is starting to click. The Raiders were able to defeat the lowly Chiefs, but the sledding won’t be easier against the Bucs, who are a great run defense. Darren McFadden continues his subpar season, but will need to break out of it soon for this team to compete.

Vikings @ SEAHAWKS – The 12th man has had its biggest impact ever this year. Teams can’t go to Seattle and win it appears more than ever this year. The Vikings might be finally coming back down to earth as they were rolled by the Bucs at home last week. The Seahawks talented defense will keep the pressure on a suddenly turnover happy Christian Ponder.

Cowboys @ FALCONS – The Falcons return home after rolling the Eagles in Philly, and the Cowboys leave home after a disappointing loss to the Champs. The Cowboys keep playing disappointing football and their schedule doesn’t get easier this week as the Falcons are now sitting a pretty 7-0. Matt Ryan will definitely have his hands full against a good Cowboys defense that frustrated Eli Manning last Sunday, but the Georgia Dome will be too rowdy for the Cowboys.

Eagles @ SAINTS– The Saints are abysmal right now. The Eagles are abysmal right now. But, somebody has to win this game. If the Eagles could go back to running the ball with Shady McCoy they could be a top NFC team, but they can’t keep the ball out of the hands of their opponents’ defense. The Saints schedule doesn’t get easier as time goes along, they still have to play the Falcons twice. I am writing them off for the season, but not this game.

UPSET ALERT  – I am putting the Falcons on Upset Alert, because of how the Cowboys play the best teams tough and have been known for beating undefeated teams. Also, I put the Vikings on Upset Alert going into Seattle is never easy. Dolphins because of Chuck Pagano’s presence.

SURVIVOR PICK – This week I go with the Chargers, simply because of how bad the Chiefs are. (If Picked already: Lions, Packers and Texans.) From here on out, picking against the Chiefs and the Jaguars simply is a good idea.

Those are my two cents … cash ’em in!

Week 8: Can’t Defend the Pretenders

11-2! Many keep saying pick with the spread, by why I’m not trying to help ya’ll gamble. I’m trying to do what the experts do, but at least I know people are checking the posts!

Don’t forget to check out the Lessons Learned from Week 7 after reading my picks.

THURSDAY

BUCCANEERS @ Vikings – Christian Ponder simply looked awful against the Cardinals, Adrian Peterson did not. But this Bucs’ defense is a top 10 run defense. I never expect anyone to hold Peterson down, but it will put more pressure on Ponder, which as last week showed he’s merely a game manager right now. These Bucs are pissed that they lost a heart-breaker to the Saints last week. This offense is for real and if the defense could stay healthy you’d be looking at possibly the second best team in the NFC South. I expect the Bucs to come out with a purpose.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yisxlE4p3BA – If you haven’t seen Joe Morgan’s Touchdown.

SUNDAY

Panthers @ BEARS – The Panthers season has been ugly and will continue to get ugly. Cam Newton has pouted his way through press conferences and most of the season. The GM has been fired and the coach is definitely next. They keep losing focal points of their roster to the IR: Beason, Gamble and Kalil. The Bears offense looked average at best on Monday Night, but the defense has looked masterful the whole season the turnovers and the shutdowns of teams’ number one receivers, now including Megatron.

CHARGERS @ Browns – The Chargers find themselves coming off a bye and off that 24 point blown lead debacle. Unfortunately, that means they’ve had two weeks to let it sink in and watch lots of tape. These things leave a bad taste on in your mouth, but Norv shouldn’t let off the gas now in games and I expect to see that weekend against the lowly Browns, who couldn’t get much against a bad Colts defense. Brandon Weeden is progressing especially with the help of Trent Richardson and Josh Gordon, but it won’t help coach Pat Shurmur.

Seahawks @ LIONS – Seahawks played their letdown game last week and came out flat, especially their wide receivers. Their defense is still living up to its hype, but the offense is just lacking solid play all game long. Russell Wilson dials up one big play usually each game, but you can’t win games like that forever. The Lions again looked flat against a solid Bears defense. Stafford will probably be running for his life a lot, but with two young wide-outs now playing we should expect a lot of throws across the middle, with the focus turned to Calvin Johson.

Jaguars @ PACKERS – No Maurice Jones-Drew and Blaine Gabbert is hurting pretty bad means enough said for this game. The Packers are on a roll and Rodgers won’t lose his funk here. (Side note: Greg Jennings is having surgery on his abdominal and will be sidelined even longer and Jordy Nelson might not play, but Rodgers will make others step up.)

COLTS @ Titans- Luck was a selfish fantasy football player last week as he ran the Colts’ only two touchdowns in himself. This team has not looked much like a playoff contender, except for the team that appeared in the Packers’ game. Luck will have plenty of chances to make the playoffs in what is shaping up to be an illustrious career. Chris Johnson has been going H.A.M the past few weeks and all in Tennesseee are hoping the roll continues.There is no reason to believe it shouldn’t continue in this game against a bad Colts defense, but the Titans are now 2-1 under Matt Hasselbeck. Does this spell Quarterback controversy?

PATRIOTS @ Rams – I dislike the London game, almost as much as I despise Thursday night games. It’s unnecessary travel for players who shouldn’t have to and it’s a marketing ploy by the league. If they wanted to play a game in London, don’t you think they would have played soccer? Anyway, the Pats looked beatable again last week against the Jets. Bill’s got to dial something up this week against a feisty Rams team, who lack play-makers on offense right now as teams stack the box against S-Jax and Daryl Richardson. Danny Amendola is making surprise returns to practice, and they (mostly Sam Bradford) need his slot capabilities.

Dolphins @ JETS – The Dolphins are coming off their bye week, in which they broke a tie and now find themselves in second place in the AFC East. Last game against the Jets, came down to one of the ugliest overtime games ever, in which the Jets won by a field goal. The Jets come off a very gritty overtime loss to the Patriots and they seem to be playing above their talent level. No Santonio Holmes and no Darrell Revis, but this team has been more than in the games that those two guys haven’t played. Expect no less from the Jets on Sunday, but Sanchez will look less than average again against a very underrated Dolphins defense.

Falcons @ EAGLES – Both teams are coming off a bye. The Falcons are 6-0, but have looked beatable and have needed some late magic from Matt Ryan to keep that “L” column clean. The Eagles are an ugly 3-3 in which the games they’ve won haven’t been great and the games they’ve lost haven’t been memorable. The Eagles are 13-0 coming off a bye under Andy Reid. This is the reason I am picking them. Keep in mind that Matt Ryan is from Philly and that Asante Samuel played in
Philly for a few years, and usually those two feed into great performances by individual players. This is my toss-up game for the week.

Redskins @ STEELERS – RG3 looked masterful against the Giants, but Eli Manning did what he does best. The Redskins defense is sub-par after injuries have taken its toll, and now it appears that London Fletcher’s consecutive games streak is in jeopardy. He isn’t as good as he used to be, but he is still a foundation in that defense. RG3 could really use Fred Davis and Pierre Garcon, but he will be without them possibly for the rest of the season as Fred Davis was just lost and Garcon hasn’t been there since the first game. The Steelers came out on top of a hard fought game on Sunday night against the Bengals. Big Ben is leading this team that has only had a running game in this past game. Big Ben will keep his swag this weekend against a bad Redskins defense.

RAIDERS @ Chiefs – The Raiders pulled off a nice comeback against a bad Jaguars team, but a win is a win. Carson Palmer has been much safer with the ball this season, but Darren McFadden hasn’t been putting up those same numbers as last year. The Chiefs are just straight awful. They have turned to Brady Quinn and they have said for good, “so that he won’t be looking over his shoulder.” Dwayne Bowe is just shaking his head. The Chiefs have talent, but turn the ball over a lot and their defense can’t stay on the field that long and expect to keep teams out of the end zone.

It’s Come to This … Now He’s Done!!!

Saints @ BRONCOS – The Saints are coming back, mark it down. They run into a tough test this Sunday against a 3-3 Broncos team that is really better than its records indicates. The three losses have been near comebacks in which they put themselves into a hole early. The Saints are scoring points at will. Drew Brees had over three-hundred yards and four touchdowns at halftime last week, not joking. Peyton is leading this talented offense the same way he did in Indy, the difference is his defense is ten times more talented in Mile High than it ever was in Indy. This is a home game for the Broncos, which spells trouble for Drew Brees, who doesn’t play very well in cold outside games.

49ERS @ Cardinals – America, say hello to your #1 Pretenders. The Arizona Cardinals are crumbling before our very eyes, blame the QB injuries and the RB injuries, but it wouldn’t have mattered. They have a solid defense, and Larry Fitzgerald, but that’s all they’ve had going for them. Even when they were winning game their greatest weakness was on display big time, their offensive line. The 49ers will expose this weakness with great magnitude because this teams defense is always hungry. The 49ers are out to prove the NFC West is still theirs and theirs only. This game is for a tie atop the division, but it won’t happen.

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Falcons on Upset Alert as they have walked pretty thin ice while riding a 6-0 record, they better not come out flat against the Eagles. I have also put the Vikings on Upset Alert against the pretty high-powered Bucs.

 

SURVIVOR PICK – Simple. The Green Bay Packers. (If picked already: Patriots or Chargers).

Those are my two cents … cash ’em in!

Anthony (T-Catz)

 

Week 7: Average now Acceptable

Where’s Patches O’Houlihan when we need him?

Eleven teams currently sit at 3-3 in the NFL, and only two are better than that in the AFC. Take it in for a second, there’s never been a more average year. Last week I went 10-4 again and this week should only produce strong results as I try to continue this roll.

THURSDAY

Seahawks @ 49ERS – I’ll preach it again, it’s just becoming repetitive now, this is a letdown game. Great teams don’t have these, but a scrappy and average team like the Seahawks do. Tom “Terrific” couldn’t seal the deal on them last week and they were able to pull out what seemed to be another miracle win. The Niners were punched in the face by the Giants and will be looking to take some shots themselves.

SUNDAY

Redskins @ GIANTS – The Redskins offense looks great, but the defense is banged up. RG3 looks like the real deal and he can most certainly fly. Their receiving options are nothing to write home about when Pierre Garcon is hurt. The Giants are coming off a statement win in San Francisco, which snapped Eli Manning’s streak of 24 straight games with over 200 passing yards. Last year the Redskins had the Giants number and the Giants always play down to their opponents, especially at home. I believe the Giants will win because it is a must win in a division match-up if they lose they fall to 0-3 in the division.

Titans @ BILLS – How did this Titans team beat the Steelers? Beats me. The Steelers’ defense has been awful this year and Shaun Suisham missed the game winning field goal near the end of the game. Matt Hasselbeck is going to be under pressure this Sunday from a Bills’ defense that may be starting to turn the corner. Ryan Fitzpatrick simply cannot turn the ball over, he’s got a two-headed monster in the backfield now and should just rely on them.

Browns @ COLTS – Big win, Browns! Bad loss, Colts! Andrew Luck is poised to take down a worse defense than he just faced. The only problem is the weapons on the Browns overshadow those of the Colts, but guess who the home team is? Andrew Luck had a bad, BAD, game and many don’t expect to see consecutive ones of those too often and who better to keep that from happening against?

PACKERS @ Rams – The Packers just stomped out the Texans, in Houston. Rodgers showed why he was the MVP last year by tossing six touchdowns and no interceptions against one of the best defenses in the NFL . How bout a little Championship belt? The Rams played an ugly game in which they were heartbroken by the Miami Dolphins. This team has been feisty all year under Coach Fisher’s control. Don’t expect a hangover from the Pack.

The Doublecheck!

Cardinals @ VIKINGS – The Cardinals are finally coming back down to earth. They have no running game and their defense is solid, but not enough to carry them past their offensive woes. The Vikings still sit in second in the NFC North. This team ran into Hurricane Robert, who ran all over them like they were the football field, but I expect a bounce back game here against a falling Cardinals team.

SAINTS @ Buccaneers – A bye week is a nice gift after your first win during what has already been a long season. This team needs to fix its defense, and what better way than to get the leader of the defense back from injury. We will have to see how big of an impact Jonathan Vilma has in his first game of his dramatic 2012 season. The Bucs looked great last week against the Chiefs, but after all it was the Chiefs. The Bucs have not left Tampa in three weeks now, nice life. This match-up provided two great games last season, I expect no less this weekend.

COWBOYS @ Panthers – The Cowboys have to win this game, otherwise they will start to challenge the Saints for the biggest story this season, and don’t expect Jerry Jones to remain quiet. Cam Newton is defining “Sophomore Slump” right now and runs into a good Cowboys defense. The Panthers, I don’t even know. There’s so much talent on this team, but they simply don’t look like a team is the biggest problem. Cam is trying to force his throws and the defense needs to step up against a week Dallas offensive line.

Ravens @ TEXANS – The Ravens took so many hits last week in the win against the Cowboys: Injuries to Ray Lewis, Ladarius Webb and Haloti Ngata. Now they have to rush Terrell Suggs less than six months removed from an Achilles tear.  Now the weight of the team actually drops onto the shoulders of Joe Flacco. The Texans were shellacked by the Packers at home. They’ve had some time to digest it now and stay home and you better believe they’ll be ready to play the Ravens without their leader (don’t the Texans know how this feels) and their best cornerback.

Jaguars @ RAIDERS – These Raiders seem close to being able to compete in the AFC West. They went to the wire with the undefeated Falcons and played great defense the whole game against a high-powered offense. Carson Palmer is turning the ball over less, and they need more production out of Darren McFadden. The Jaguars don’t look good. Gabbert is definitely progressing, but not much. Maurice Jones-Drew is one of the best running backs in the NFL and proves it weekly, but Gabbert has no protection and gets scared when it falls on him. They also don’t have much of a defense.

Jets @ PATRIOTS – The Jets had a great win. Sanchez threw for less than 90 yards, but their was a Shonn Greene sighting. Don’t expect the same this week. Sanchez will have to throw the ball much more. The Patriots are not a happy bunch right now. A very tough and heartbreaking loss in which Tom Brady was “owned” by Richard Sherman. Expect a lot of scoring from the New Englanders.

Steelers @ BENGALS – This is the toss-up game for me. The Steelers have looked plain crappy. The defense is the worst part and as usual their offensive line can’t stay healthy and Big Ben doesn’t have a lot of time in the pocket. Rashard Mendenhall is hurt again. The Bengals offense has looked great as I said last week, but last week Brandon Weeden tore up the defense. This will be a physical game as it always is, but I will take the home team.

Lions @ BEARS – The Lions were able to pull off an upset against the Eagles with some last minute and overtime heroics. The Lions were a great team last year, but do not seem to be half that team last year. If they are going to win, Stafford will have to make the throws he made last year be mistake free against a Bears defense that takes advantage of any mistakes. The Bears have looked like a complete team, mostly on defense. Cutler, of course, has been under fire for his turnovers, but that’s Jay being Jay. This will be a great Monday Night game.

UPSET ALERT – I am putting the Giants (because of what they are capable of each year) and the Bears on upset alert. Division games are always played harder than the rest of the games, because they actually do mean more.

SURVIVOR PICK – This week I like the Patriots over the Jets as my lock. (If used already: Packers and Cowboys).