It was another solid week last week - and I feel quite relieved that I never really bought into the Jets this year. Ouch. A beat down like that is inevitable when you play against a QB that played at Michigan. We’re into the final quarter of the season, so it’s time to finish up strong. Here’s how I see this week breaking down for my NFL office pool picks:
Indianapolis at Tennessee - This is one ugly game - neither of these teams are doing anything that they should be proud of. The trick here is to figure out which one is less horribly flawed. Tough choice, but I’ll take the Colts.
Cleveland at Buffalo - I was disappointed by the Bills and surprised by the Browns last week. Still, I like the effort that the Bills have put forth recently, and I find it hard to believe in the Browns - or at least every Browns player other than Peyton Hillis. Take the Bills.
Green Bay at Detroit - The Lions haven’t won a divisional game in forever. That’s not going to change here. The Packers are playing very good football right now, and Aaron Rodgers is dialed in. The Lions almost embarrassed the Packers last time they met, and Green Bay will be hungry to make sure that that doesn’t happen again. This one could get ugly. Take the Packers.
Giants at Minnesota - I really don’t like either of these teams - they both have way too many problems to make me happy. I also really don’t like Eli Manning. Still, Manning is more trustworthy than whoever will play for the Vikings in this one. Take the Giants.
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh - One of these teams has the worst coach in football - at any level. It’s not Pittsburgh. This is a total mismatch. Take the Steelers.
Tampa Bay at Washington - I’m a little concerned about the way that the Bucs collapsed last week when they had the win in the palm of their hands. Still, this is Washington they are playing here. There aren’t many better ways than playing Washington to get your mojo back after a tough game. Take the Bucs.
Atlanta at Carolina - Surely you don’t need to hear any opinion on this one. Take the Falcons.
Oakland at Jacksonville - Which Raiders team is going to show up? When they play their best - like they did in beating up on the Chargers - they are tough to beat. But then they can play a hopelessly bad game. The problem is that you can’t really see ether version of the team coming. Jacksonville is somewhat more predictable. Take the Jaguars.
St. Louis at New Orleans - How can you not be impressed by what the Rams are doing right now? Still, New Orleans is playing like a team that hasn’t given up on their hopes of defending their title, and they are going to be tough to beat here. Take the Saints.
Seattle at San Francisco - The Niners have been wildly disappointing this year, but they are playing better recently, they are at home, and Seattle is struggling with injuries and consistency. San Francisco has a world of issues, but they can win this one. Take the 49ers.
New England at Chicago - There isn’t a team in the league that can stop Tom Brady the way he is playing right now. Ridiculous. The Jets are a better team than Chicago, and the Pats made them look ridiculous. I look for more of the same here. Take the Pats.
Miami at Jets - The Jets got beaten like a rented mule on Monday Night Football. There’s two ways this game can go after that - they can pout and quit, or they can show some pride and bounce back strong. They have a talent advantage that is solid here, so I’ll bet on the pride. Take the Jets.
Denver at Arizona - The Broncos fired their coach after 12 games, and yet they aren’t necessarily the biggest mess of a team in this game. At least the Broncos have a quarterback I trust. Plus, teams have been playing well with interim coaches this year. Take the Broncos.
Kansas City at San Diego - I have absolutely no respect for Norv Turner’s boys - teams can’t be that inconsistent and still be admirable. They are now in real trouble in the division race. A win here would make it much closer, but I suspect that Kansas City will be much more focused and motivated. Take the Chiefs in a mild upset.
Philadelphia at Dallas - Tough game. Both teams are coming off a win. Both are playing reasonably well recently. The Eagles are deeper and more consistent, though, and I’ll take Vick over Kitna any day (though I may not have before Vick did time). Take the Eagles.
Baltimore at Houston - Coming into the season this looked like it could have been a good game. It’s not. Houston is a mess. Baltimore isn’t, and Joe Flacco will feast on Houston’s sorry excuse for a secondary. Take the Ravens.
Allen Eastman is on fire with his college and NFL picks. Three consecutive profitable weeks for his college football and NFL handicapping selections and Eastman has helped his $100 bettors make more nearly $5,000 during that stretch. He has another very strong card coming this week, including more picks from his NFL 99 System football betting system (11-5 run).