NFL Office Pool Picks Week 4
by Trevor Whenham - 9/27/2011
It was a bit of a strange week last week, but we managed to weather it acceptably well. It wasn’t a great week, but it certainly could have been worse. The good news is that some of the games we got wrong for our NFL office pool picks are ones that few people would have called correctly — Buffalo over New England being the most obvious example. Another week, another set of picks for your office pool:
Detroit at Dallas - The Cowboys are coming off a Monday night win, but it was hardly inspiring — six field goals and no touchdowns does not get the blood flowing. The Lions are playing ahead of expectations, but sooner or later they are going to come back to earth. Against this Cowboys team, though, I am willing to bet that Detroit won’t crash back to earth just yet. Take the Lions.
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Carolina at Chicago - I am very tempted to pick the Panthers here. They have looked surprisingly competent despite major flaws while Chicago is a flawed team with an underwhelming quarterback. Still, I can’t quite pull the trigger. It’s a road game for the Panthers, and they are too young to trust there at this point. Take the Bears.
New Orleans at Jacksonville - This one couldn’t be more straightforward. Jacksonville is a troubled team with quarterback issues. New Orleans is an elite team with confidence thanks to their comeback last week. It’s a mismatch. Take the Saints.
Tennessee at Cleveland - Cleveland got a win against Miami last week, but it was ugly. Tennessee won, too, and they are getting surprisingly strong play from Matt Hasselbeck. The Titans lost Kenny Britt for the year, and Chris Johnson has been terrible so far, but they are still the better squad here. Take the Titans.
Buffalo at Cincinnati - The Bills are the most exciting team of the year so far, and they couldn’t be more confident after the last two weeks. The Bengals are truly terrible, and Andy Dalton took a big step backwards last week. Another mismatch. Take the Bills.
Minnesota at Kansas City - The scalpers are going to have a rough day in K.C. on Sunday. The Vikings are great in the first half and non-existent in the second. The Chiefs are no good in either half. This one is the ugly coin flip. Take the Vikings. I guess.
San Francisco at Philadelphia - The Eagles have been a big disappointment this year, and now Michael Vick’s status is uncertain. If he can’t play (unknown as I write this) then the QB situation is bleak. San Francisco, though, just isn’t very good. This is another ugly game. Take the Eagles.
Washington at St. Louis - The Redskins are coming off a frustrating loss on Monday night, and will be looking to get back on track. They should be able to against a St. Louis team that has been hit hard by injuries and which has been just plain bad so far. Take the Redskins.
Pittsburgh at Houston - Last week I decided I believed in the Texans, and for three quarters or so I felt great about that decision. Then they collapsed. It was ugly and now this game is as confusing as one could be. Houston is at home, so I’ll go with that, but it could really go either way. Take the Texans.
Atlanta at Seattle - The Seahawks are a poor team. The Falcons are a very disappointing, very inconsistent one. The Seahawks are better at home, but they still are a long way from strong. This is not destined to be a great bird battle. Take the Falcons.
N.Y. Giants at Arizona - This is the fourth game featuring a team from the NFC West. It really shows just how terrible the NFC West is. Six wins might be good enough to win that mess. Take the Giants.
Denver at Green Bay - I won’t waste your time. Take the Packers. Obviously.
New England at Oakland - Interesting game. Surprisingly interesting. The loss to Buffalo exposed some real cracks in the Patriots’ seemingly impenetrable armor. The Raiders are one crazy comeback from the Bills away from being unbeaten, and they have the best running back in the league right now. It’s tempting to pick the Raiders, but I’ll resist. Take the Patriots.
Miami at San Diego - I absolutely refuse to feel anything for this Miami team anymore. That loss to Cleveland was the last straw. San Diego is far from perfect, but they are the better team here. Take the Chargers.
N.Y. Jets at Baltimore - I haven’t liked the Jets since before the preseason started, and a lot of those reasons were exposed when they lost to Oakland. Baltimore has been brilliant in two games out of three, and I expect another strong performance here. Take the Ravens.
Indianapolis at Tampa Bay - The Bucs are a strong team rounding into form. The Colts are really, really bad, and right now I’m practically their best option at quarterback. This is one final mismatch for the week. Take the Bucs.
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