NFL Survivor Pool Picks and Advice: Week 3
by Matt Severance - 9/23/2010
It’s been a breeze through two weeks in your NFL Survivor Pool if you have followed my advice. In Week 1 I suggested the Tennessee Titans, and their game with Oakland was never in doubt. Last week I recommended the Green Bay Packers, and they were way too much for the wretched Buffalo Bills – I’m thinking the Bills might be the Lions or Rams of a few years’ past as in they will be the team that players pick against nearly every week.
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If for some reason you took my second choice last week, well, your Survivor Pool is done. The Dallas Cowboys lost at home to the Chicago Bears, and already the sniping and panic has set in Big D. I am faring well on my “steer clear” picks so far. OK, the Philadelphia Eagles did escape in Detroit last week, but Minnesota lost at home to Miami (the Vikings are currently the Cowboys of the north) and Carolina lost at home to the shockingly 2-0 Tampa Bay Bucs.
This week should be interesting in the NFL because there are, by my count, some eight home dogs. Obviously I can’t be recommending the Packers or Titans as my top choice since they are off the board. And let me say right off I hate just taking the three teams that are the most favored this week, but it is what it is.
Have No Fear
Baltimore Ravens (vs. Cleveland) – The Browns are seven points from being unbeaten, so that sounds promising, right? Alas, those losses came to Tampa Bay and Kansas City, and the offense scored all of 14 points in each. Yeah, I realize the Bucs and Chiefs are both 2-0 surprises, but that’s because they each played the Browns once. Seneca Wallace starts for Baltimore, and he has never faced the Ravens in his career. Also, Browns starting RB Jerome Harrison is questionable this week after not practicing through Thursday. It’s Baltimore’s home opener, so I can’t imagine a scenario it loses.
New England Patriots (vs. Buffalo) – I don’t like this pick in a way just because I hate being a follower – i.e. my note above about piling on and just picking against Buffalo each week. And I’m sure the Patriots will miss Kevin Faulk, who was lost for the season with a torn ACL. But New England will be plenty focused after laying an egg last week against the Jets. New England has won 13 in a row against Buffalo, and eight of those wins have come by at least 13 points. I don’t see that changing unless new Bills starting QB Ryan Fitzpatrick is Dan Marino for a day.
Minnesota Vikings (vs. Detroit) – I’ll be honest, if I didn’t have to give three under this category I might put this in the “steer clear” category because of how off Minnesota looks. But the Vikes have won 12 in a row at home against the Lions, who do look much better this year – Jahvid Best is a stud. Shaun Hill starts for the second week in a row for Detroit, and I think the Vikes now have enough film on him that he probably for passes for half as many yards as he did in lighting up the Eagles. Plus, the Vikings’ season is on the line here. It does scare me a bit that Percy Harvin may not play.
New Orleans Saints (vs. Atlanta) – The New Orleans offense hasn’t been in sync yet, even though the Saints are 2-0. But the champs probably should have lost Monday night and would have if the Niners hadn’t turned the ball over four times. Plus, New Orleans is on a short week and lost Reggie Bush for six weeks. The Falcons played the Saints very tough twice last year. An upset here wouldn’t surprise me in the least.
Pittsburgh Steelers (at Tampa Bay) – You shouldn’t be taking a road team this early in the season, and the Steelers are only favored by a point. I also don’t think the Bucs are for real at all. But did you see that Pittsburgh offense get stuck in the mud under Charlie Batch last week? He’s the starter here with Byron Leftwich not ready and Dennis Dixon hurt.
Any other 2-0 team – The unbeaten Chiefs are hosting the 49ers, who, as mentioned above, fairly well dominated the Saints on Monday and won’t go 0-3. Houston is facing a completely desperate Dallas team and the Texans just lost their left tackle. Why on earth take the 2-0 Dolphins against the Jets even though New York won’t have Darrelle Revis? And then you have the Monday nighter in Chicago between unbeaten Green Bay and Chicago. That game is too potentially even to risk a pick on. Steer clear of all unbeaten teams in Week 3.
So, Baltimore’s my top pick this week, joining Tennessee and Green Bay on the unavailable list. Good luck!
Doc’s Sports went 3-1 for NFL picks last week including an easy 5-Unit winner behind Green Bay and we are very excited about this weekend’s picks (another 5-Unit winner is on the board. Our picks against the NFL Point Spread for this coming weekend are looking very fruitful. Call us toll-free at 1-866-238-6696 to find out about a free one-week football package from Doc’s Sports or any Advisory Board handicapper of your choice. Check our home page daily for NFL handicapping articles and up-to-the-minute updated odds.
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