Re: Week Seven NFL Picks and "Game of the Week"
posted at 10/22/2009 11:22 PM EDT
Do you only rank the game of the week #1? Or do you rank all the games? Because I disagree entirely with your list if you're trying to rank which games will be the best to watch. In order of interesting-ness
(1) Minnesota (+4.5) at Pittsburgh
-There will be blood. Two physical teams duke it out in the 'burgh. I'm interested to see how Favre handles Dick Lebeau's zone blitz and wonder if this is the week he throws wild interceptions to a recently-returned Troy Polamalu. The Steelers' offense has more firepower than they're given credit for, and if Antoine Winfield doesn't play, then the pressure will be on Jared Allen to get to Roethlisberger while still containing an emerging Rashard Mendelhall. I see Pittsburgh taking away Peterson and the Vikings run to force Favre to beat them, and with Polamalu back and the Steelers at home, I don't see that happening.
-> My pick: Steelers to win, but not cover - if the sperad is 3, then push
(2) Atlanta (+4) at Dallas
-Atlanta is 4-1 and quietly only one game behind the flashier Saints. Dallas is a team looking to get a win over a quality opponent to show that they're legit contenders while also looking to stay above .500. I like Atlanta, and wonder why Wade Phillips is still coach.
-> My pick: Atlanta to win and cover
(3) Chicago (+1.5) at Cincinnati
-Chicago is a team learning about itself on the fly and battling a host of injuries to stay in the early wild card race. Cincinnatti is tied for first place in the AFC North and is looking to keep pace with the Steelers.
-> My pick: Chicago to win and cover
(4) New Orleans (-6.5) at Miami
-New Orleans is coming off of a big win against the Giants and this looks like a trap game. The Dolphins are 1 1/2 games out of first place and looking to make a move in the division; they also have the running game to control the clock and keep Brees off of the field. A win for Miami would go a long way towards putting them back into contention. I see this game coming down to 3 or 4 points - I think Miami combines its game plan against the Colts (40+ minutes ball control) with things they saw the Jets do to stop Brees.
-> New Orleans to win, but not cover
(might just be wishful thinking... I have a funny feeling this is the upset of the week)
(5) San Francisco (+3) at Houston
-The 49ers are looking to prove they're for real, but their conservative offense can't afford to fall behind. Frank Gore should be back to split the load with Glen Coffee to try to control the clock. The Texans have the firepower to put the game out of reach. Will the Texans finally step up and become a contender?
-> My pick: 49ers to win and cover
(6) Arizona (+7) at New York Giants
-Can Arizona travel east and win? They need to win to stay in the division hunt because I don't think a wild card will come out of the (mostly pathetic) NFC West. The Giants will be playing angry though after a loss to New Orleans.
-> My pick: Giants, by a lot (cover)
(8) New England (+14.5) at Tampa Bay (in London)
-The Patriots took a step in the right direction against a winless team and look to do the same this week while staying healthy. Tampa is looking for its first win in an unfamiliar venue. Whichever team adjusts best will win. I pick the Patriots to win and cover - Tampa's pass defense gave up 350 yards to Tony Romo, so I don't see Brady leaving London with less than 400 yards. Watch for the refs to try to keep this one close for at least the first half to try to keep the game entertaining.
-> My pick: Patriots to win and cover
(9) New York Jets (-6.5) at Oakland
-The Jets won 3, then lost 3. DE Richard Seymour predicted the Raiders would make the playoffs. This should be an interesting battle between two teams that need to start gaining momentum if they're going to be the contenders they're claiming to be. I pick the Jets to win and cover. The Jets pick JaMarcus Russell... at least 3 times. The real bet in this game: which QB has a lower passer rating when the final gun sounds. QB limbo is on!
-> My pick: Jets to win, but not cover
(7) Indianapolis at St. Louis (+13)
-Indianapolis should roll over the Rams, who are in tough shape, although the Rams gave the Jaguars a fight last week. The Colts are not the Jaguars. I like the Colts to win and cover. I ranked this game low because it shouldn't really be a game.
-> My pick: Colts to win and cover
(10) San Diego (-4.5) at Kansas City
-San Diego is looking to bounce back after a home loss to Denver and needs this win to stay in the playoff race. Kansas City... 'nuff said
-> My pick: San Diego to win and cover
(11) Green Bay (-7) at Cleveland
-I'm not sure whether Green Bay can be a legit contender with their cobbled-together offensive line, but I am sure that Cleveland is terrible. The Packers should win easily.
-> My pick: Green Bay to win and cover
(12) Philadelphia (-7) at Washington
-This should be a clinic on how not to manage a game. I pick Philly to bounce back because Washington is a hapless organization right now
-> My pick: Eagles to win and cover
(13) Buffalo (+7.5) at Carolina
-I think this will be an uninteresting game between two sloppy teams, although Edwards is doubtful for this QB rating limbo contest; I take the Panthers because the Bills are on pace to give up over 3,000 yards rushing this year and Carolina has one of the best rushing attacks in the league
-> Carolina to win, but not cover