What follows is a slightly abbreviated and jumbled compilation of my week eight picks. Happy Halloween everybody!
Arizona Cardinals @ Baltimore Ravens -10
A 34-10 barnburner. I don’t like Kevin Kolb against the best defense in the league; I don’t like it at all. Also, cue pundits declaring the Ravens “back in business” after laying a 30-burger on one of the more inept defenses in the NFL.
Minnesota Vikings @ Carolina Panthers -3
To the guy who spent like four dollars on Cam Newton in my fantasy auction league: you lucky bastard! Watching Cam play last Sunday, I was struck not just by the strength of his arm or his escapability (both are certainly estimable), but by his accuracy. As a rookie, he’s completing 60 percent of his passes. That’s better than Peyton Manning in his first season. Remember when we felt bad for the Panthers having the first pick in this draft? FUN TIMES.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans -6
This feels like the type of game where the sucky team that has been able to hang with the best in the league is finally blown out. I don’t know why, just a gut feeling.
Miami Dolphins @ New York Giants -7
More than any other team I’m rooting for the Dolphins to land the number one pick. They’ve sucked for far too long. They need a ‘new Marino’. Just get Tony Sparano out of their so he doesn’t decide to give Reggie Bush the ball 25 times a game with Andrew Luck under center.
New Orleans Saints -14 @ St. Louis Rams
I’m not gonna’ lie, I was pulling for the Saints to score 70 last week. Am I a cruel human being? Probably, but it hasn’t been done since 1966. What!? I’m a fan of history!
Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee Titans -2.5
Do you know how tempted I am to pick the Colts? I really believe the Colts aren’t as bad as they showed last week, and the Titans haven’t been good since they upset Baltimore. So what’s stopping me? After last week’s 62-7 loss to the Saints, Jim Caldwell stumbled around the field like he just witnessed the execution of his family. I’m afraid the Colts are toast…if we didn’t know that already.
Detroit Lions -3 @ Denver Broncos
Tebow threw some flummoxing passes in his first start of the season. I’m sure you’ve seen the lowlights by now, but at one point he lofted a ball 15 yards over his WIDE OPEN target. There are multiple third string quarterbacks in the league that could make that throw with ease. And even Tebow’s comeback was ugly to watch. That winning touchdown throw was as poor as I’ve seen. I still don’t understand how it worked.
Washington Redskins @ Buffalo Bills -4
John Beck has no FITZMAGIC. The Bills have it in abundance. Also, can we give some love to Fred Jackson? He’s been Buffalo’s MVP of the season, NOT Fitzpatrick. I wish there was a rule where undeserving and underperforming players had to forfeit their huge contracts for more deserving players. That way, Jackson would get Johnson’s 60 million and CJ would get paid as much as a back’ averaging 2.9 yards per carry should get paid.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Seattle Seahawks +6
This is simple: The Seahawks have been surprisingly good at home since the beginning of last season, and the Bengal’s are merely frisky. Remember that very important distinction. They’re not good, they’re frisky.
Cleveland Browns @ San Francisco 49ers -4.5
If you enjoy terrible offenses facing off against superb defenses, then by all means, enjoy this game. No, really, please do.
New England Patriots -2.5 @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Tom Brady kills the Steelers, he just does. Last year, when New England visited Heinz Field in one of the marquee games of the season, Brady shredded the best defense in the league to the tune of 350 yards and 3 touchdowns. The Patriots rushed for 103 yards against a defense that allowed an average of 62.8 rushing yards per game. For whatever reason, the Patriots have Pittsburgh’s defense figured out.
Dallas Cowboys +7 @ Philadelphia Eagles
This is a total coin flip. The Eagles do a lot well, the Cowboys do a lot well, yet both teams are great at finding unique ways to lose. I’m riding the “bye weeks may be detrimental” theory even though Andy Reid is 12-0 after bye weeks. Also, the Cowboys have the league’s third best defense.
San Diego Chargers -9 @ Kansas City Chiefs
I had the Chiefs winning this one for the past hour…but I’m not ready to give up on the Chargers. I believe in Philip Rivers, he’s gonna’ snap out of it. I believe in that offense, I really do. I continue to believe that San Diego is going to make a run the second half of the season into the postseason.
Lock of the Week: New England Patriots OVER Pittsburgh Steelers
Pounding of the Week: New Orleans Saints OVER St. Louis Rams
Upset of the Week: Seattle Seahawks OVER Cincinnati Bengals
Last Week: 6-6-1