Head-to-Head: Cowboys Attempt to Bounce Back
by Jordan Adams and Drew Mangione - 12/13/2006
Each week two of Doc's Sports gambling aficionados will give their alternating perspectives on the key games and interesting issues in the game at both the college and professional levels. You may not agree, they may not agree, but it should be interesting!
Here are this week's topics:
Dallas (-3.5) at Atlanta (8 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 16)
Drew: The Falcons have won the last two regular season match-ups with the Cowboys. Michael Vick was injured for the 2003 meeting, but he played in the first win (20-13) as a rookie. Of course, that was the Ryan Leaf era for the 'Boys. Now it's the Romo Era and Vick's best target then-Alge Crumpler-is still his only option with every running back hurt. Sure the Saints whooped on Romo last week, but New Orleans also owned Atlanta in two games this year.
Prediction: Cowboys 38, Falcons 13
Jordan: After getting blasted by the Saints, Dallas can ill afford to lose another game, as they are just one game up on both the Giants and Eagles. The Falcons are always a threat in the Terror Dome, however Warrick Dunn and Jerious Norwood are both banged up and that means the running game will not be in top form. Running back Mike Vick is always a danger to break out, but it's his arm that still makes Atlanta semi one-dimensional. The Cowboys have too many weapons to be held at bay for another game.
Prediction: Dallas 24, Atlanta 17
Cincinnati at Indianapolis (-3) (8:30 p.m., Monday, Dec. 18)
Drew: Everyone knew the Colts struggled against the run, but last week was painful. That looked like a Madden game, the Jags racking up 8.9 yards per carry. Ridiculous. What are Johnson, Johnson and Johnson thinking? If Marvin Lewis follows the blueprint, Rudi and Jeremi will pound the ball, while Chad reaps the rewards off play action. The Colts have one hope though…getting their offense on track.
Prediction: Bengals 37, Colts 24
Jordan: And the first word of the Monday Night Football Spelling Bee is: defense. I'm sorry but you are both incorrect. The Cincy Convicts have made more headlines for their eight player arrests this season than they ever will for strong defensive play. And what else needs to be said for the Colts. I'm pretty sure the Navy run attack could take Indy behind the woodshed and unleash a painful exhibition. Last year these two teams accounted for 82 points. It won't be that offensive, but for the defenses it still will be offensive.
Prediction: Cincinnati 34, Indianapolis 31
What are your thoughts on the Allen Iverson trade situation?
Drew: The Philadelphia 76ers have already received more from the diminutive superstar than the team ever gave him. He's played hurt. He's played hard. He listened to Larry Brown--even though they did fight--and he improved. He put fans in the seats. Sure, they gave him a max contract, but after the championship run they went back to trying to change Allen, rather than doing what worked: building around him. I hope Allen gets a chance to win and if that means refusing trades to the Bobcats and other scrub teams until they deal him to Minnesota for a sandwich, then that's what he should do.
Prediction: Iverson decides he wants to play again and accepts a less than ideal destination, dooming him to more losses.
Jordan: Truthfully I just think it would be cool to see A.I. in a new uniform. Whether the Answer goes to Boston or Golden State or back to Georgetown, he isn't going to help his new team win a title. He is best scorer in the history of the league for his size, however elite scorers in the NBA nowadays are a dime a dozen. And as much as Philly wants him out of town, they are no way going to get equal value in trade for the former 1996 overall No. 1 pick.
Prediction: Allen Iverson leaves town and Philadelphia becomes one of the sorriest, offensively inept franchises in the NBA.
Houston at L.A. Lakers (10:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 15)
Drew: Neither of these teams should be a surprise, even though I was one of many to predict the Lakers missing the playoffs. I had let my Kobe bias ignore the fact that Phil Jackson is an all-time great coach. He has Mr. Bryant under control, Lamar Odom playing up to his talent, Luke Walton playing over his head and a two-pronged center of Bynum and Brown kicking in 13.2 points and 9.8 rebounds per night. Jeff Van Gundy now has a complete roster and a Yao who is beating his chest and playing like a winner, but no McGrady means no win.
Prediction: Lakers 105, Rockets 97
Jordan: The Lakers have been money in the Staples Center this year. And with the recent news that T-Mac is out indefinitely with back spasms only further implies Los Angeles will take this game. But I really don't care how many games the Lakers win at home. They have had a ridiculously unbalanced schedule so far and of their 20 games they have played as of Tuesday, just five were road games. Kobe will lead this team to the playoffs, but if they can't win on the road they are one series and done.
Prediction: Los Angeles 101, Houston 93
Anaheim at San Jose (10:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 16)
Drew: It's Hockey time in the Golden State, eh. I live up near Canada, eh, and all we're talking about is the Sabres, eh. But this is a goal-keeping showdown of J Giguere's 2.10 goals against average versus the 2.04 GAAs of Vesa Toskala and Evgeni Nabakov. In the end, Teemu Selane, who is on pace for his first consecutive 40-goal seasons since 1997-99 and defenseman Chris Pronger, who is dishing out assists at a career high pace, will win the battle of the retreads over Bruins bust Joe Thornton.
Prediction: Ducks 3, Sharks 2
Jordan: The NHL is about as attractive as watching Barry Melrose and his out-of-control mullet break down the nightly highlights on ESPN. Looking at the standings suggests the Ducks are on fire and dominating this season. And I do like their new jerseys. San Jose is second in the Pacific division behind Anaheim and they too have really cool jerseys. Despite Anaheim losing just one road game, I'll play the small upset and roll with the Sharks at home.
Prediction: San Jose 3, Anaheim 2
Jordan and Drew will be going Head-to-Head every Thursday. If you have any comments or questions for them, or any topics that you'd like discussed, email us at email@example.com.