WARNING this is a lot to read, proceed at your own risk.
We’ve got some great divisional match-ups this week, including Pitt v. Cinn, Denver v. KC, and NYJ v. NE Pats. This week also has no teams on byes. Here goes:
Buffalo Bills @ Dallas Cowboys
The Bills took a loss last week at the hands of the Jets, while the ‘Boys beat the lowly Seahawks by 10. I still can’t take Dallas seriously after that brutal loss to the Eagles 2 weeks ago, but then again I can’t take the Eagles seriously either! The NFC East is a complete mess, with the Giants (yay) being the only consistent team.
Dallas also has home-field advantage
Lets talk about the Bills for a moment. Right now, the AFC East is tightly packed, so they need to win this game to keep up with the winner of the Jets/Patriots game. Even though the Cowboys need this win a bit more, the Bills know what it takes to win, they just need to execute. If Tony Romo does his usual thing, the Bills will pull out the W.
That is why I’m choosing Bills OVER Cowboys
Tennessee Titans @ Carolina Panthers
Last week, the Titans lost to the Bengals by 1 TD, while the Panthers took a week off to focus. Chris Johnson hasn’t picked it up yet, but this just might be the game he finds his groove. Matt Hasselbeck will have to take advantage of the secondary in order to win this game, because Johnson definitely won’t be able to carry this team.
On to the Panthers: Cam Newton is a monster. Although he’s cooled off after his amazing start to the season, Killer Cam cannot impress me more. People were sayin’ stuff about how unprepared he is to take the starting job at QB for this team. He’s shown us what he can do, can he repeat that against the Titans?
Bottom line is: without CJ2K, Tennessee cannot win. That is why I’m choosing Panthers OVER Titans.
Houston Texans @ Tampa Bay Bucs
Big game here for the Bucs. The Texans have the 2nd-best record in the AFC, and they’re doing it without André Johnson (by the way, Johnson will return on November 27th). Matt Schaub has proved that he’s a semi-elite QB who uses his receivers and RB’s to perfection. And who can forget the dynamic duo of Arian Foster and Ben Tate? What a great pair these guys are, sorta like Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw on the Giants. Plus, that defense is much improved from last year, so that means less pressure on Schaub to put up points through the air.
That said, the Bucs aren’t looking too shabby either. Although they are even at 4-4, Josh Freeman knows what it takes to win late in games. He’s a master at 4th Quarter comebacks, which means the Texans should never stop putting up points on the Bucs. I’m starting to wonder: ya think Freeman purposely messes up in the first 3 quarters to set himself up for a 4th Quarter comeback?
In addition, Albert Haynesworth was just picked up by the Bucs this week. Bucs have home-field advantage.
Either way, I’m picking Texans OVER Bucs this week.
New Orleans Saints @ Atlanta Falcons
The Saints are coming off that W against TB, while the Falcons routed the Colts 31-7. New Orleans is still a high-octane offense combined with a decent defense. Darren Sproles provides the spark that the Saints have been looking for after Reggie Bush’s departure. Drew Brees still puts up points for this offense, nothing really new here.
This is a big game for the Falcons. Matty Ice can look really good at times, especially when he’s throwing to Gonzalez, Rowdy Roddy, or Julio Jones. He’s got some pretty good receivers to work with, and I think he’ll use them effectively to beat this NO Defense.
Plus, the Falcons are at home, which helps them a little.
I’m going with the big upset: Falcons OVER Saints
St. Louis Rams @ Cleveland Browns
As “theklownboy” said in his NFL Week 10 Preview, this is a crappy game to watch. Unless you’re a fan of the Rams or the Browns (God bless you), you shouldn’t watch this game. Is it even a game?
I’ll break it down anyway, because I know some of you are serious sports bettors and will tune in to the game because of it.
The Rams did look good when they beat NO 2 weeks ago. Unfortunately, that was 2 weeks ago. Last week, they lost in overtime to the Cardinals (Pat Pet return FTW). Sam Bradford is in a real Sophomore Slump and I’m not sure if he’ll climb out of it this season. To add insult to injury, Bradford is listed as “Questionable” for this game.
The Browns lost to the Texans last week 30-12. They are sitting at 3-5 and look decent considering they’re in the same division as the Ravens, Steelers, and Bengals. Peyton Hillis has been a mess this season (Madden Curse?).
Also, Cleveland has home-field.
I think the Browns will pull this one out and beat the Rams. BROWNS OVER RAMS is my prediction.
Washington Redskins @ Miami Dolphins
This is also a pretty bad game. Washington lost their 4th game in a row last week at the hands of the 49ers. Miami earned their first W of the season @ KC. To be honest, they didn’t just beat Kansas City, they destroyed ’em. The Redskins looked really good the 1st 5 weeks of this season, but have slowed down since and haven’t won. Remember when Grossman was on fire and looking like Tom Brady? Yea, that’s how far back you have to go. John Beck is now the starter, with Roy Helu now at RB.
The Dolphins definitely deserved their win over the Chiefs last week. Matt Moore looked impressive and did not turn the ball over once. He also threw 3 TD passes with 244 yards. The big question: we know he can’t repeat, but can he come close? Only time will tell, however I think he will be able to take advantage of this defense.
Plus, Miami has home-field
Bottom line, hard game to pick, but I’m goin Dolphins OVER Redskins
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals
This is the week that Cincinnati will show what kinda team they really are. The Steelers just lost to Baltimore last week, while the Bengals beat Tennessee by 1 TD. Steel City is looking to redeem themselves in this game. Big Ben can make plays, Rashard Mendenhall can run the ball, but it’s that Steel Curtain that keeps them in the game no matter what.
On the other side, Cincinnati has looked supurb this season. Through 9 weeks, they have the best record in the AFC (6-2). Andy Dalton looks for A.J Green more often than not, and the defense knows it! But, they still can’t stop ’em! What makes you think Pittsburgh will be able to stop them? Ced Benson is returning this week after his 2-game suspension and will start v. the Steelers. I foresee a lot of short screens in his future (to take advantage of that aggressive pass rush).
To add to all that, Cincinnati is home.
You know what? Forget all the expert analysis of this game, I’m going with the favorite: Bengals OVER Steelers.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis Colts
This may be the most winnable game for Indy this season. After losing Peyton Manning to injury, the Colts are 0-8. If they want to win a game this season, it’s gonna have to be this one. Del Rio’s Jaguars have been hit with injuries this season, and haven’t been able to overcome them.
I’m picking Jaguars OVER Colts, mainly because I don’t think the Colts will win any games this year.
Denver Broncos @ KC Chiefs
Tim Tebow and the Broncos travel to Kansas City to take on the Chiefs. The Broncos beat Oakland last week 38-24, although you can hardly say that Tebow won them that game. Quite frankly, the Raiders beat themselves. I wouldn’t give too much credit to Tebow just yet, but a W here and I’ll consider it.
What’s happened to the Chiefs? First, they looked really hot to start the season, then they lose to the Dolphins 31-3? They gave Miami their first win of the season! I’m hoping it was just an off game for the offense AND the defense. Matt Cassel has shown he can hook up with Dwayne Bowe and Johnathan Baldwin for some nice gains. Also, the Chiefs have found their RB in Jackie Battle. He certainly won’t win them games, but he can carry his load when asked.
Bottom line, KC Chiefs OVER Broncos. Still not a Tebow believer…
Arizona Cardinals @ Philadelphia Eagles
Every time I look at that Pat Pet return vid, I remember how good HE can be (notice how I said HE, not HIS TEAM). Don’t let last week’s OT win fool you. The Cardinals do not have a great running game or passing attack. Combine that with a less-than-stellar defense, and you are pretty vulnerable. However, as illustrated by that video and Pat Pet himself, they have great special teams.
The Philly Eagles haven’t gotten on track yet this season. So far, they are 3-5 and 3rd in the NFC East. Although they did win big 2 weeks ago v. Dallas, they lost their MNF matchup to the Bears last week by 6. Mike Vick did have 213 passing yards, but LeSean McCoy didn’t surpass Forte’s 133 yards on the ground. LeSean is a TD machine; if the Eagles can get their ground game in sync, trust me, they will win this game. Mike Vick doesn’t have to throw for 300. McCoy needs to get the ball at least 20 times. Eagles also have home-field, which obviously helps them in a number of ways.
My prediction: the Cardinals will fight hard, but the Eagles will win. Ealges OVER Cardinals.
Baltimore Ravens @ Seattle Seahawks
Last week, Baltimore beat Pittsburgh with a last-second TD pass from Flacco to Smith. They are sitting at 6-2 and know what it takes to win against opponents like the Steelers. Seattle got beat last week by the Cowboys 23-13. Although the Seahawks are at home, they won’t be competing too much in this game. As we saw on Sunday Night, the Ravens have the best defense in the league. They also are 7th in the League in Points Scored (average of 26 a game), 2nd in Points Allowed (16.2 pg) and 2nd in Yards Allowed (279.4 pg).
Also, Seattle really doesn’t have any offense to speak of, scoring only 15.2 PPG this season (28th in the League). No matter who’s starting at QB for ’em, they don’t have the offense to win games. Against this Ravens D, they won’t survive. I’m confident in saying they won’t score more than 14 points.
Prediction: Ravens OVER Seahawks.
Detroit Lions @ Chicago Bears
This is a big game for the Chicago Bears. The Lions are coming off a Week 9 bye, while the Bears beat the Eagles last week by 6. First, let’s discuss the favorite Lions. Matt Stafford is really looking sharp this year, and having Calvin Johnson on your team only makes you better. You want a TD in the redzone? Throw it up high to Megatron and let him go get it. Jahvid Best may not be returning for this game, but the passing attack led by Stafford will get them somewhere.
On to the Bears: We’ve all said this about Jay Culter. One day he’s hot, another day he’s cold. Which Cutler you get can really change the dynamic of any game, whether it’s against the Packers or the Colts. Let’s just imagine for this game he’s average Cutler. Matt Forte will be a beast in this game. He’s reminding some fans of Walter Payton (never a bad thing to play like a HOF). The Bears’ defense this season has been average: 264.2 Passing Yards PG, and 21.8 PPG. Both are middle-of-the-pack stats, but against this Lions team, I think there will be a lot more passing yards than that.
Even though Chicago has home-field, I’m going Lions OVER Bears.
New York Giants @ San Fran 49ers
This is a tough one to choose, partly because I’m a Giants fan. I will say this: both teams have the same playing style. Both have stout defenses and great ground attacks. However, I think Manning’s passing attack is slightly better than Smith’s. I think that is what separates these two teams.
Granted, the 49ers do have a better record. However, look at the division they play in!
I’m going Giants OVER 49ers because the Giants’ passing is a bit better and the 49ers play in the NFC West.
Should be a good game, nonetheless.
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL PICK COMING TOMORROW