NFL Survivor Pool Picks - Week 3
by Matt Severance - 09/19/2008
Hopefully this column finds you still in your NFL Survivor Pool - and you are if you followed my advice in the first two weeks as the Eagles (Week 1) and Bucs (Week 2) both won rather easily.
Week 2 in the NFL went pretty much to form, with only one truly potential pool-busting upset, in my opinion: 49ers over Seahawks.
This week's matchups would appear to have three games that could be lopsided: Buffalo over Oakland, the Giants over the sad-sack Bengals and the Patriots over the Dolphins. You probably can't go wrong with any of those three, although there are potential pitfalls in all of them, as with every NFL game:
Oakland at Buffalo - The Bills look great, but Darren McFadden scares me. He was a one-man show against the Chiefs last week. He has been bothered by a turf toe this week but is expected to play. If he's out, the whole complexion of this game changes.
Cincinnati at NY Giants - OK, the Giants look like Super Bowl champs and the Bengals look like the worst team in Ohio, which is saying something considering the Browns also play there. But can Carson Palmer really have a third consecutive career-worst game?
Miami at New England - The Patriots could be without starting running back Laurence Maroney and even backup LaMont Jordan. And now that Matt Cassel has played a full game, teams might have a better read on him. OK, I'm probably reaching here.
I will go with the Giants this week.
Here are a few games I would stay away from:
St. Louis at Seattle - You might be tempted to pick the Seahawks this week as the Rams have easily looked like the worst team in the NFL the first few weeks. But Seattle has literally no receivers and Matt Hasselbeck doesn't look right. In addition, Rams coach Scott Linehan may well get fired if the Rams lose here, so maybe they actually put up a fight.
Tampa Bay at Chicago - While Devin Hester hasn't done much as a receiver for the Bears, he's still the reason the team led the NFL in starting field position last year. Teams won't kick to him. If he's out, that probably means a lot of long fields for the Bears.
Carolina at Minnesota - Vikings star Adrian Peterson is questionable, and who knows what Gus Frerotte has left? Carolina gets Steve Smith back and has a great backfield in DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart, but the Vikings are desperate.
Jacksonville at Indianapolis - The Colts have owned the Jags, going 9-3 in the past 12 meetings. But Indy lost 2007 NFL Defensive Player of the Year Bob Sanders this week, and the Jags are another desperate 0-2 team.
NY Jets at Chargers - You'd think this is a Chargers lock, especially since they can't afford to go 0-3, but if LaDainian Tomlinson sits for the Bolts, all bets are off. And Brett Favre usually shines on "Monday Night Football" - he has he an 83.8 passer rating with 57 touchdowns on MNF.
Good luck in Week 3, and we'll see you next week when byes kick in.