Week 10 NFL Picks and Odds
by Trevor Whenham - 11/10/2010
Last week was, by the very narrowest of possible margins, a very successful week for us. Oakland won their game in overtime against Kansas City by just a field goal after coming back late to force the extra period. I had Oakland -2.5. I also had Indianapolis +3, and they lost by two points. There wasn’t a touch of breathing room. Hopefully these Week 10 NFL picks and odds won’t be quite as stressful and tightly contested.
Tennessee Titans (-1) at Miami Dolphins (Sunday, November 14, 1 pm ET) - I really want to like the Dolphins. They do some things well, and they are moving in the right direction in a lot of ways. However, they are a long way from a finished product in a lot of ways.
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Chad Henne hasn’t taken the big step forward I was hoping for from him, and the Dolphins’ defense has yet to become a really dangerous or even reliable force. Their four wins are against teams with real issues, and their four losses are against pretty good teams. This is a team that is decent, but not great.
Tennessee isn’t an elite team, either, but they are the better squad at this point. Their QB play has been surprisingly good, they have won three of four on the road, and they are 5-3 both straight up and against the spread. Tennessee has scored 12.7 points per game more than Miami in the last three, and Miami has allowed 31.7 points per game at home. That’s a combination of factors that could lead to a good day for the Titans.
Tennessee has a solid edge on the ground, and the interesting addition of Randy Moss to the Tennessee receiving corps could give the team an emotional boost in their air game. Tennessee is in a strong spot here. I wish that they weren’t such a public pick, but I see real value in the Titans.
St. Louis Rams (+6) at San Francisco 49ers (Sunday, November 14, 4:15 pm ET) - The Rams are a very young team, and they are a long way from being ready for prime time. Still, at this price they are very attractive.
San Francisco has been a wildly disappointing team, and their QB play - and the offense as a result - has been inconsistent at best, and often much worse. Troy Smith gave them their best performance of the season from the position before the bye week, but he is so inexperienced and rusty that expecting that from him again this week takes more of a leap of faith than I am willing to make.
St. Louis has been playing some very solid defense recently, and that’s going to test the already questionable San Francisco offense.
My biggest issue with the line in this spot, though, is that six points is a lot, and winning by that much is a lot to ask of the Niners here - just as it would be if the Rams were favored by the same amount. There’s another thing at work here, too - the attitudes of these teams. St. Louis showed a lot of heart and toughness recently when they not only didn’t claim Randy Moss off waivers, but rallied around the fact that they didn’t need or want him because they believed in what they were doing. It seems sincere, too. Contrast that with a San Francisco team that totally lacks an identity and the character battle here is very one-sided. Character plays a big part in this league.
I see the Rams winning this one outright, and even if they don’t there is a pretty good chance that they won’t lose by more than a field goal. That makes the Rams very attractive in my eyes.
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