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Nov 05

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Week Nine Picks

Well, it’s that time in the season I hate. The Vikings’ bye week. To console myself in the absence of my favorite team, I will be writing a special post-game breakdown on the Green Bay Packers game. Preview: The Packers Suck. Check back on Sunday when I will elaborate on that. Let’s get to this week’s picks!

Jets vs Bills

The Bills have been the surprise of 2011 – at least for me. Ryan Fitzpatrick is in the middle of the pack when it comes to passing yards for the season, but his Passer Rating of 97.8, puts him at #6 in the NFL. The Jets are always positioned as a legitimate threat, at least by Rex Ryan, but Mark Sanchez’ Passer Rating is just 0.1 above… Donovan McNabb. Bills 24, Jets 19.

Seahawks vs Cowboys

Tavaris Jackson gives himself an “F” so far this season, proving the old adage, the more things change, the more they stay the same. The Cowboys, as an organization, likely cast a suspicious eye on Tony Romo when he takes the field. They never know if he’s going to make it or break it. While the Cowboys have lost some games they should have won this season, the Seahawks make a 2-6 team that sports purple & gold look competent. Cowboys 31, Seahawks 14.

Browns vs Texans

The Browns are at 3-4 for the season and doubts surround their QB and coaching staff. Meanwhile, the Texans are 5-3, giving them the lead for the AFC South Division and a shot at their first play-off berth in franchise history. Matt Schaub’s Passer Rating places him 7th in the NFL, while Colt McCoy is hanging out at #25, well below McNabb and even T-Jack.  With the Texans’ defense and running game balancing things out, the Browns will end up 3-5 on the season heading into week 10. Texans 28, Browns 10.

Falcons vs Colts

I could write a lot of stunning & witty repartee about these teams and impress you with what Paul Allen would call an elite football mind, but it really doesn’t take too much analysis to know that a decimated and unmotivated Colts team, led by Curtis Painter while Peyton Manning looks on from the sidelines, is going to be in way over its head against the Falcons. No homefield advantage here. Falcons 34, Colts 13.

Dolphins vs Chiefs

The Chiefs are coming off a nail-biter on MNF against the Chargers, in which they ultimately triumphed. The Dolphins are the anti-Pukers at 0-7. Let’s not forget, though, that they’ve been able to give quite a few teams a run for their money well into the 4th quarter. The Chiefs, meanwhile, have come out on the other side of that competitiveness on the plus side more than once. For this game, however, there’s no place like home. Chiefs 21, Dolphins 17.

Buccaneers vs Saints

Heading to the less-than-SuperDome this week, the 4-3 Buccaneers will be taking on the 5-3 Saints. The Saints suffered an embarrassing beat down by the Rams last week. I don’t know if they were coasting and thought they had an easy win, or if the Rams had finally had enough. Rest assured that there’s no way those Aints are going to allow the Bucs to beat them at home. Redemption is the name of the game. Saints 34, Bucs 20.

49ers vs Redskins

Jim Harbaugh has led his team to a 6-1 record while the Redskins sit at 3-4 with a 2nd string QB leading the offensive charge after Rex Grossman was benched. The ‘Skins are an organization in disarray preparing to host a team that has exceeded every pre-season expectation. I don’t suspect that John Beck is going to be able to out-duel Alex Smith, despite the home field locale. 49ers 24, Redskins 13.

Broncos vs Raiders

2010 marked the 2nd Coming of the (Football) Christ when the Broncos drafted Tim Tebow. In 2011, Orton was benched and Tebow took the field. The crucifying has begun. Tebow’s been called the worst QB in the NFL and has spawned the mocking prayer pose now known as “tebowing” (thanks, Lions!). Despite the incredible drama at the QB position in Oakland, Tebow’s no match for any NFL team, save the Dolphins. Raiders 21, Broncos 10.

Bengals vs Titans

The Bengals are surprising a lot of people. Or, at least those who are paying attention. Meanwhile, the Titans underwhelm, especially when it comes to Chris Johnson’s performance this season. Andy Dalton doesn’t get the airtime of Cam Newton, and one has to wonder why when the Bengals have the inverse of the Panthers’ 2-6 record… or rather, will have, after they take the Titans to 4-4 for the season. Bengals 20, Titans 17.

Rams vs Cardinals

Looks like Sam Bradford may be making his way back from his high ankle sprain. Kevin Kolb, on the other hand, is ruled as doubtful for Sunday due to the mysterious “turf toe”. That means that John Skelton will be starting in his stead. The Rams are coming off a tremendous win over the Saints last week and the Cardinals have the same 1-6 record. Despite the Arizona venue, the Rams are bringing the momentum to the stadium. Rams 19, Cardinals 14.

Giants vs Patriots

When I picked the Steelers to beat the Patriots, my rationale was “sometimes the Patriots just fall down”. Along those lines, the Patriots are pretty unbeatable at home and one would have to guess fairly unhappy with themselves for the loss to the Steelers. Meanwhile, the Giants barely eked out a win against the Dolphins last week – although I heard one analyst say it was one of Eli’s best games. You know what they say about analysts, right? Yeah. Neither do I. Patriots 28, Giants 20.

Packers vs Chargers

As much as I’d love to see the Packers take a beating in San Diego this weekend, I doubt a QB that can’t take a snap is going to get the job done. The Packers will be well rested coming off the bye, while the Chargers are 9 different kinds of dinged up. Looks like it’s going to be up to our beloved Purple & Gold to hand those Pukers their first loss next weekend when the Vikings storm Lameblow. Until then, the Pukers’ll be 8-0. Pffffft.  Pukers 31, Chargers 24.

Ravens vs Steelers

These 2 teams are not meeting for the first time this season. Last time they met up, the Ravens handed the Steelers a pretty decisive loss. Since then, the Steelers have put together a season that continues to improve and are currently enjoying a winning streak of 4 games. Since the trouncing, the Ravens have looked mediocre and sometimes just generally bad. However, something tells me the Ravens are going to be motivated. Ravens 24, Steelers 21.

Bears vs Eagles

The Eagles seem to have found their groove while Cutler was showing some efficiency prior to the bye. The Eagles are 3-4 while the Bears are 4-3 coming into this conference match up. At the start of the season, the Eagles were called “The Dream Team” (mostly by themselves, I think). The Bears haven’t been called much since about 1985. And this game in the City of Brotherly love isn’t going to help them change that. Eagles 27, Bears 21.

Those are my picks this week. Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment!

 

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