Tag:NFL Picks
Posted on: November 19, 2009 6:01 pm

NFL Week 11 Picks

Loving a ton of the home dogs this week.  Sure there are many bad teams out there, but double digit victories in the NFL gets a little harder to do on the road this time of year when teams are better at game planning and know their personnel a bit better.  Up and down season for me thus far.  Thanks for all of you who continue to support and read.  Please post your thoughts on the games and why you agree or disagree with any of my picks.  With the one's I've selected this week, there is sure to be enough to talk about. 
- M

Panthers vs. Dolphins

Jake Delhomme has been able to keep the picks to a minimum and the Panthers running game has really taken off.  DeAngelo Williams is averaging a crazy 5.1 yards per carry.  This team appears to have turned the corner and has played really good football as of late.  Not to be out done Ricky Williams is averaging 5.3 yards himself, but the Miami running game will be missing one of the two headed attack as Ronnie Brown is out for the year.  Miami gets Joey Porter back on defense, but it may not be enough this week.  I’m taking the Panthers that are on a roll to cover the 3 points at home versus a Miami team that struggled to beat Tampa last week.

Lions vs. Browns

Snore.  Two proud franchises, two bad teams.  I don’t particular care for this game, forget watching it, I won’t even watch the highlights.  Both teams have actually played with some grit, though either team can’t find a win.  I really like Stafford.  He took a beating last week, but played tough until the clock ran out and I have to admire a QB like that.  I’m going with the team that can at least score and pick the Lions to cover the 3.5.

Jaguars vs. Bills
Buffalo has decreased their population by one Dick this season as Dick Jauron finally got the boot and is out as coach of the Bills after an embarrassing 41-17 loss to the Titans last week.  The team is a dumpster fire right now as the defensive coordinator who has taken over as head coach can’t even select a quarterback to start.  The team has gone to the point of selecting Green Bay practice squad QB Brohm (which tells you how bad it really is there). Jacksonville on the other hand is on an upswing and had a big win over the Jets.  In a game that went back and forth they showed some real toughness and came back for a good win versus a good team coming into the game on a bye.  Even if Maurice Jones Drew stops a yard short on a couple of sure touchdowns this week the team should put up enough points to cover the 8.5.

Steelers vs. Chiefs
The Steel Curtain got a taste of their own medicine last week as they were beaten at their own game by a very good Cincy team.  Troy Polamalu is out again this week with an injured leg.  Pitt should have more than enough to still beat the Chiefs who will be without a star of their own in Dwayne Bowe who got caught using diuretics to lose weight.  Personally, I didn’t think the guy was fat to begin with, but maybe he was trying to be more aerodynamic.  The good news for the Chiefs is that Jamaal Charles has taken over for Larry and has shown a big difference is speed in the backfield.  Even though I feel the Steelers will cruise in for the win, I am going on a flier and picking the Chiefs to cover the 10.

Ravens vs. Colts
The Colts had an amazing victory last week against the Pats.  Amazing because they were handedly beaten for most of the game and still managed to pull it out.  With all of that said I think they are going in limping to this game, emotionally and physically.  They seemed poised for a let down and the hard hitting Ravens are not the team to limp into a game with.  The Colts of course will be without Bob Sanders who is out for the season and that leaves the secondary with a huge hole that was exposed versus the Pats last week.  Now they go into Baltimore who is licking their chops at a chance to ruin and undefeated season.  The team didn’t look great versus the Browns but they may have been looking ahead a bit.  In a pick’em I will take the Ravens.

Giants vs. Falcons
The Giants went into their bye week with four consecutive losses, each ugly in their own fashion.  They were able to gain a game in the standings because they were off the field.  They have looked terrible and I’m not convinced one week can repair all that is wrong with this team.  The defensive secondary is horrid, which leads me to think that a top flight WR like Roddy White will be able to expose them.  That is of course if Matt Ryan, whose play has fallen off a cliff can turn it around and get him the ball.  The team has plenty of weapons with the likes of Michael Turner and Gonzalez and should keep it within 6.5, though I see the Jints getting the win.

Packers vs. 49ers
The Pack certainly proved me wrong and actually be someone who was good.  With a record that seemed to be smoke and mirrors I didn’t think they stood a chance versus Dallas who was playing really high going into the game.  The 49ers pulled out an unlikely win after giving up tons of yards to the Bears but in their credit stopped them with five picks last week.  The problem for the 49ers is their anemic offense.  Put that offense against a defense that held the Dallas juggernaut to 7 points last week and I see a huge problem for the red and gold.  Green Bay at home should have enough to romp the 49ers this week and cover the 6.5.

Vikings vs. Seahawks
The Vikings had 13 penalties last week, played like dogs and still managed to cover.  I don’t suspect they will do the same this week.  With Favre and his completion rate of a crazy 107.5 with 17 touchdowns finding a partner in Sidney Rice I see them steam rolling the Seahawks who have not won a game on the road this year.  Seattle can’t win on the road, playing in Minnesota, and Trufant out with a concussion is too much to overcome.  The Vikes crush the Seahawks and cover the 11.

Cowboys vs. Redskins
Just when you start believing in the Cowboys they find a way to disappoint.  They looked terrible last week versus the Packers.  Worse than looking disinterested, they looked unprepared.  In reality the Cowboys should crush the Redskins, the reality is they most likely won’t.  They may win, but I don’t see them covering the 11 points.  Throw away records and crappy coaches (in this case both teams have crappy coaches so it’s a wash), this is a rivalry and rivalry games are close because there is good ole’ fashion hatred involved.  The Redskin defense has been playing better and they may be able to keep this one close.  I’m picking them keep it within 11 points.

Buccaneers vs. Saints
Tampa Bay has been playing inspired ball lately.  I didn’t think they could keep the game close last week, but they have proven me wrong.  On the other side, I thought the Saints would continue to blow the doors off of people, but they have been squeaking by their games of late.  So we have a David and Goliath situation here.  David is getting 11 points and I’m thinking why not?  Go with the hot hand until it proves you wrong.  Saints should win, but the Bucs will cover.  In a surprise I’m going to take the newly inspired Bucs lead by the impressive Josh Freemand to make it a game as the Saints have looked very sloppy lately and may overlook the Bucs who will put up a fight.

Rams vs. Cardinals
The Rams like the Bucs have been playing really good ball in the past couple of weeks.  They surprised the world and gave the Saints all they could handle last week.  Arizona has looked even better the past couple of weeks and has the wins to accompany their good play.  Their offense has really taken off and the defense has turned it around.  The Cards defense while good has given up at an average of 25 points in their last 3 games.  That might be enough to give the Rams enough to keep it closer than 9 as they are playing at home.  It’s too bad the Rams are so awful, no one is getting a chance to see what might be the best running back in the league in Steven Jackson.  The guy simply does it all.

Patriots vs. Jets
All the tears in the world not help the Jets this week as they are taking on the rejuvenated Patriots.  The Pats though coming off a loss appear to be capable of returning to their 2007 form which was one of the more dominating offenses in league history.  Rex can cry to his team all he wants, the fact is the Pats are coming into this game hungry, angry, and firing on all cylinders.  The Jets are a good football team, but Mark Sanchez is a year or two away from becoming the quarterback the Jets have been searching for to knock the Pats off their AFC east throne.  Rex is also a year or two away from creating the defense that can take over a game themselves.  Since we are not a year or two away, the Pats will take it to the Jets this week and cover the 10.5.

Bengals vs. Raiders
JaMarcus Russell has been mercifully benched.  The bad news is he is being replaced by a guy who has 9 picks and 5 fumbles in his limited starts.  The good news is he can probably hit an open receiver and the defense has been able to keep the last two games within 8 points despite their handicap at quarterback play.  The Bengals have been steam rolling everyone this year and demonstrated why they are a team to be reckoned with this season when they handedly beat the Steelers last week.  With Cedric Benson missing and coming off a big win last week, they may be poised for a let down.  Even with a bad week they should be capable of beating the Raiders but I will take the Raiders to keep it within 9.5 at home.

Broncos vs. Chargers
A tale of two teams headed in different directions.  The Broncos got off to a hot start and looked like a team to be true contender in the AFC, and the Chargers who got off to a miserable start are the hot hand right now and are winners of four in a row.  Teams seem to have figured out the Broncos offense and Orton is not the same QB he was earlier in the season.  Brandon Marshall who might be the NFL’s best WR has virtually disappeared and the Denver running game has been on a decline.  The Chargers on the other hand have showed some serious toughness beating the Giants in the Meadowlands and followed that up with a dominating performance versus the EaglesPhilip Rivers is a stud at QB and has found his weapon of choice in Vincent Jackson.  LT showed flashes of his old self last week and when that happens this team is very tough to beat.  Denver is a tough place to win, but the Chargers are on a roll and I have to take them and give the 3 points.

Eagles vs. Bears
Chicago has looked putrid.  Yes they were able to move the ball versus the 49ers, and Cutler literally threw the game away, but that was against a very bad 49ers team.  Cutler seems to be a man on an island and is trying to do everything himself.  When a QB does that there are bound to be mistakes.  The Eagles are a team loaded with weapons, and are capable of beating anyone, but they have not played like themselves much this season.  McNabb does not appear to be the same QB that he’s been in recent years for whatever reason and that has to be concerning to Eagles fans.  Either way, I don’t care for the Bear right now and Lovie Smith has got to be on his way out soon as the fans there will be seeking blood if the Bears don’t turn this thing around.  I will take a good NFC East team versus a bad NFC North team any day of the week and give the 3 points to the Bears.

Texans vs. Titans

I have been very high on the Texans this year.  They are quietly one of the best teams in football and are coming into this game off a bye week.  The Titans have looked like a completely different team the past few weeks and that 50 point beating by the Pats and Jeff Fisher wearing a Manning jersey seemed to wake this team up.  The team feels perfectly content with playing spoiler and even has the 86 year old Bud Adams giving people the finger.  You have to love the new attitude by the team which seems to be sparked by the reemergence of Vince Young.  The guy wins ugly, but at the end of the day he wins.  The Texans though playing at home, and with good offensive power are going against a team with a swagger right now that could care less and that makes them dangerous.  I am going against the majority on this one and think the Titans cover the 4.5.  Crazy I know, but Tennessee still has a good defense and poses matchup problems for the Texans, not to mention its Monday night and they don’t want to be embarrassed again

Category: NFL
Tags: NFL Picks
Posted on: October 22, 2009 5:24 pm
Edited on: October 23, 2009 5:11 pm

NFL Week 7 Picks

After coming off what can only be described as my toughest week yet, I thank all of you who continue to support this blog and hope to bounce back this week after dropping to third in my league.  Like I stated before, the room for error in picking against the spread is small and teams like the Eagles, Jet, Steelers, and Jags certainly did not help.  Not to mention the Vikings falling apart and giving up 21 points in the 4th quarter felt like a stab to the heart.  With that said, a new week, and a fresh start.  This may be the best week in football yet as the matchups look like great games.  Tough to pick, but great to watch.  I've got some fliers and a couple of what appear to be no brainers, only time will tell.  Thanks for all the comments and support, and as always, best of luck this week.
Update: A couple of picks have changed this week, given some last minute news, particuliarly in the Browns & Packers, and Giants & Cardinals games.   Enjoy!

Chargers vs. Chiefs
San Diego breaking my heart this past week versus Denver.  A perfect trap was scenario for them with a trap game for the Broncos and they choked at home after coming off a bye week.  They have given up 72 points in their last two games and look like the second worst team in the division.  The good news for them is that the worst team in the division is next up.  Back to the bad news, the Chiefs have looked very good in the past few weeks and have won and covered as I have suspected they would with Matt Cassel playing lights out.  The Chiefs even got their first win, albeit versus the horrid Redskins.  I am running out of patience with the Chargers but have to believe they will rebound this week and will win the game.  Covering is another thing.  They beat the Chief last year by one point both times, and this year’s Chief team is better.  While the Chiefs record is poor, they have actually played pretty good and have kept most games close.  I take the 4.5 points
Colts vs. Rams
The Rams gave Jacksonville all they could handle this past week and with a line of +9 going and the Jags potent offense I expected a blowout.  I think it has more to do with the Jags playing like an inconsistent team than the Rams actually improving.  Avery is a hell of a receiver for the team and Steven Jackson may be the second best running back to Adrian Peterson, but we may never know as he has no line to help him.  Mark Bulger returned last week to help the offense out.  No sense in talking about the Colts, we all know what they are capable of and that my friends is scoring.  I have a feeling that Peyton will score at will here and will be surprised if they don’t cover the 13.

Bengals vs. Bears
This is going to be a very tough game.  Both teams coming off a loss with the Bengals falling into that trap game versus Houston, and the Bears losing to Atlanta on Sunday night.  The Bengals lost to a potent Houston team and their secondary was embarrassed allowing Matt Schaub to move the ball freely and toss 4 TD’s last week.  Jay Cutler may be better than Schaub, but he certainly doesn’t have the weapons to duplicate that performance.  The Bengals are playing at home and Cedric Benson is going to be motivated to exact some revenge on his former team who he claims tried to “black ball” him.  I quite frankly expected more out of the Bears after having two weeks to prepare for Atlanta.  Now traveling with short rest to play a very motivated Bengals team, I don’t like the match up for them.  Everyone is jumping on the Bears this week, I’m going the other way.  I like Cincy this week and I will give the low number of 1.5.

Packers vs. Browns
I don’t think that the Browns have necessarily improved, I just think that the Steelers defense isn’t what it was last year and people have been able to move the ball.  On the flip side, the Packers beat up on the Lions who were playing well going into the game, but were outmanned with Calvin Johnson and Matthew Stafford out.  Tough to gauge what you have with the Packers.  You know what you have with the Browns however, and that is one of the most dysfunctional teams in the NFL and now they all appear to be suffering from the flu.  Green Bay has had trouble covering all season and they have stuck it to me all year.  With that said, I’m going to take the lowly Browns who are playing at home to keep it closer than the 7 points.  I know it sounds nuts right now, but everyone is taking the Packers and sometimes you have to take a flier and go the opposite way.  Besides, the Browns play tough at home and at least they will be rested from a week of sitting around from H1N1.  I change my pick to Green Bay as the Browns being out all week will affect their ability to be properly prepared, not to mention a recent car accident to a defensive back has their secondary up in the air.

Steelers vs. Vikings
The Steelers have had trouble stopping opposing offenses all season.  They have also had a tough time covering the spread.  This week they give up 4 points to the Vikings who have done just about everything right this year (Except fall apart in the 4th quarter and kill those who picked them to cover last week….not that I’m bitter or anything).  Because this seems to be the matchup of the week, let’s take a look at this from a logical perspective.  The Steelers offense is potent with Hines Ward, Rashard Mendenhall, Santonio Holmes, and of course Big Ben.  The problem with the offense is that they haven’t played anyone.  They have beaten up on Cleveland, Detroit, San Diego (only 2 wins…believe it), and Tennessee.  They have lost to quality teams in Chicago and Cincy.  Passing on Minnesota is not the same as Cleveland and Ben won’t throw for 450 yards. Plus he gets sacked a ton and who has one of the sack happy defenses in the league…that’s right, the Vikings!  On the other side, the 4th quarter defensive meltdown, while agitating to me because it cost me, I believe is an aborition and I think they will be motivated to beat the defending champs.  The Steelers are missing Aaron Smith on the D-line to slow one of the best rushing teams in the league with “All Day” Adrian Peterson in the backfield.  Kirschke, and Polamalu are both hurting and have not practiced this week.  Everyone is taking the Steelers and talking about how the Vikings haven’t played anyone.  When the sheep go in one direction I go the other.  I am going to take the Vikings the 4 points and hope Jared Allen has a big day.

Patriots vs. Buccaneers
The Pats crushed the Titans as I thought they would, in fact they beat them so bad had Jeff Fisher wearing a Peyton Manning jersey this past week just to feel like a winner.  The Bucs played well last week and I have been saying that kid Johnson is a player.  They came up short and didn’t cover, but it was still a worthy flier.  This week they have the Patriots coming to town …oh wait, they are coming to Town in another country!  Poor guys will be flying over the Atlantic Ocean for a butt kicking.  We could get into analysis, doesn’t this seem relatively easy?  It’s Tom Freaking Brady with an offense running on all cylinders against a horrid defense.  The Brits will be saying “Beckham who?” after watching Brady.  I know 14.5 is a ton of points to give and I wouldn’t recommend it, but Bill Belichick runs up the score and doesn’t mercifully end any beating, so I expect them to cover. 

Texans vs. 49er’s
The 49ers’s should having come off they bye week should be refreshed and prepared to take on the Texans.  Not to mention they get Frank Gore back and now it appears Crabtree will get the start at WR.  I’m not sure of the impact he will have as a rookie in his first game.  With all of those positives for the 49er’s it might surprise you to know that I’m favoring the Texans this week.  They seem to have ignited on offense since that second half versus the Cardinals and the defense surprisingly has cut in half what they were giving up in their first 3 games.  They beat a very good Bengals team last week that had a good rusher and pass attack themselves with Carson Palmer and Cedric Benson.  With a defense playing better and what appears to be a high powered offense with Andre Johnson just a man among boys, I think the Texans, playing at home can take on San Francisco and their pedestrian passing attack.  I give the 3 points.

Jets vs. Raiders
People are going to think I’m a Raider hater.  The truth is I consider them one of the NFL’s most traditional franchises and I’m saddened by their demise.  With that said, this sorry sack of a team beat the power house Eagles.  What???  Okay I didn’t get that win last week, but obviously with those types of losses what do you expect?  It was a tough week for me.  The Eagles played like choking dogs.  The Jets on the other side played like choking dogs themselves and loss to the Bills.  I really want to take the Raiders here who have played with pride except that game against the Giants, but I still hate JaMarcus Russell although he played much better last week.  So, what to do?  Pick the team with promise that has underachieved in recent weeks or the poor team that has overachieved recently?  The passing game for both teams is terrible and Sanchez and Russell rank amongst the lowest QB’s in the league.  And while the Raiders are on an upswing after taking it to the Eagles they have lost by more than 20 points three times this year.  The Jets have some real motivation here after looking bad. With Kris Jenkins out for the Jets they should still win this game.  This may be a defensive struggle as both teams have good ones.  Not to mention the Jets historically have had trouble playing the Raiders.  At the end of the day I think the Raiders are capable of keeping it close and covering 6.5. 

Bills vs. Panthers
Trent Edwards is out for the Bills and quite frankly I don’t know if this is a bad thing for them as he has been terrible.  The team got a big win versus the Jets last week.  This surprised me quite a bit considering they are really banged up on defense.  I think it has more to do with those pesky divisional rivalry games than anything.  Two lousy teams but Carolina is playing at home with a better and healthier defensive and offensive squad.  The kicker here is that they are only giving up 1 point.  I hate to say ‘no-brainer’ here because I always seem to lose those games, but I will go with the Panthers as I think the Bills will be flat after that big win last week.

Saints vs. Dolphins
Wow, was I wrong about last week’s game.  The Saints absolutely crushed my beloved Giants and showed they are to be reckoned with.  They are outstanding and impressive to watch.  I suspected the Giants would have trouble defending the pass, but goodness that was embarrassing.  On the flip side, I have been banging on Henne all season, but after watching his start against the Jets I am a reformist.  That kid throws a great ball and has a hell of an arm.  I take back all my little snide comments about him.  I think this is a trap game for the Saints.  It’s going to be hot, on turf, coming off an emotional win, playing against a motivated Miami team off a bye week.  The world is going to take the Saints this week after what they did to the G-men, but I think Miami may be a tougher matchup.  They are solid rushing and it won’t be a track field for the Saint receivers.  I can’t say the “wildcat” is hookie as few teams have been able to stop it.  Miami is extremely efficient and effective on offense and should control the ball and the clock.  They may lose to the Saints ultimately, but it will be more like when they lost to the Colts after holding the ball for 45 minutes.  There is a reason why this line is so low considering how well the Saints have been playing.  With everyone going in one direction I am taking my next biggest flier and going with Miami to cover the 6.5

Cowboys vs. Falcons
The Falcons have looked impressive this season and haven’t given up a sack in a 3-4 games.  Roddy White is a stud and has come up big in the last few games with Matt Ryan playing like an old veteran.  The Cowboys on the other hand have only beaten crummy teams this season and barely got a win versus the Chiefs before their bye week.  With that said, the Cowboys are coming off a bye week, the pass rush has improved, they have an upcoming star in Miles Austin, their rushing is solid, and they are playing for way more than the Falcons this week.  They really need this win to keep pace with the rest of the NFC east.  The Falcons are hurting in the secondary and they didn’t look too hot in that Chicago game.  In fact I picked the Bears to win last week and almost got away with it.  This week, if you couldn’t already tell, I’m taking the Cowboys who are playing at home and are highly motivated for this game.  I give the 4 points.

Giants vs. Cardinals
What’s your reward NY for not being able to stop the pass and giving up close to 500 in offense to New Orleans last week?  The pass happy Cardinals with Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Boldin, and ex-Giant castaway Kurt Warner.  Remember he played for them?  How time flies.  It could be the fact that my judgment is clouded by my loyalty to the Giants, but I think the defense will be inspired to perform better.  A tough draw for the Jints with Arizona playing well against the rush.  My concern with Arizona has been their inconsistency.  I’m not sure who is coming to play.  At the very least you know what you’re getting with the Giants.  Is Arizona capable of beating them? Yes and by a wide margin if the Giants can’t stop the pass.  I hate this game and would steer clear if I were a betting man.  But technically because I am a betting man, I think the Giants will win and cover the 7 as Boldin is now questionable and the winds will be swirling in Giants Stadium for that Arizona passing game.

Eagles vs. Redskins
Thank you Eagles.  If I didn’t already dislike you because I’m a Giants fan, than thanks for coming up with the worst performance of the season and not only coming up short to the Raiders but not covering as well.  I suppose I really should thank you for losing and not gaining ground in the division.  With all that said, the Eagles truly are an awesome complete team and I’m still scratching my head over that loss last week.  I think they are looking to make someone pay, and unfortunately for Jim Zorn it is going to be his Redskins who will most likely be his last game.  That team is in a tailspin and coming into a divisional rival who just got the crap kicked out of them by the worst team in the NFL.  Donovan McNabb and his weapons will come to play this week.  The Eagles are giving 7 and I’m going with it.

In summary for those who hate to read:
  • KC +4.5
  • Colts -13
  • Bengals -1.5
  • Packers -7
  • Vikings +4
  • Patriots -14.5
  • Houston -3
  • Raiders +6.5
  • Panthers -1
  • Dolphins +6.5
  • Cowboys -4
  • Giants -7
  • Eagles -7

Category: NFL
Tags: NFL Picks
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com