NFL Office Pool Picks Week 3
What is so interesting about the NFL season each year is that it only takes a couple of weeks for it to remind us that we know nothing. We spend the eight months of the offseason convincing ourselves we have it all figured out and we know how the season is going to turn out, and we are able to forget that we never know anything. The Dolphins and Bengals are unbeaten division leaders. Ryan Fitzpatrick looks nothing like Ryan Fitzpatrick. Patrick Mahomes has looked like, well, Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Patriots, Steelers and Saints have all been outscored so far. Jimmy Garoppolo has not yet been a savior. Neither has Jon Gruden. It's been an odd start. But then it always is. I haven't had a great start to my office pools season, but then a lot of people haven't either. This week it will be better:
New York Jets at Cleveland: This is the spot a lot of people have had circled since the season began. So, why not. The Jets looked fine in the first week and lousy in the second. The Browns have probably deserved a better fate both weeks. Take the Browns - a sentence I never thought I would write again.
New Orleans at Atlanta: The Saints have been one of the bigger disappointments, losing the opener and struggling in the second week. But Atlanta hasn't exactly looked great, either, and when it comes down to it I trust New Orleans more when it comes to the mental game. Take the Saints.
San Francisco at Kansas City: The Niners have been a disappointment, too, while the Chiefs have been the best story in the league so far. The Kansas City defense isn't going to be able to sustain what they have done forever, but they will fare well here. Take the Chiefs.
Oakland at Miami: Oakland is a total mess. They completely lack a pass rush, which is pretty much the funniest thing that could happen to the team after the Mack debacle. They just aren't good. Miami isn't great, either, but they are in the better place right now. Take the Dolphins.
Buffalo at Minnesota: The Vikings . Obviously. By a whole lot.
Indianapolis at Philadelphia: The Eagles have not looked like the team that won the Super Bowl last year but rather like a team fighting a Super Bowl hangover. But Carson Wentz is back this week, and Indianapolis has more problems than you can count. Take the Eagles.
Green Bay at Washington: Alex Smith has been fine in Washington. It will work out for him there. But Aaron Rodgers has again shown us how valuable he is, and that will be too much for Washington to handle. Take the Packers.
Cincinnati at Carolina: I was really, really negative about the Bengals heading into the season. They are unbeaten, yet that hasn't changed at all. Carolina has not found consistency yet, but they are better than they have looked, and this will be a good spot for the to show it. Take the Panthers.
Tennessee at Jacksonville: Jacksonville is the real deal. That is a championship defense, and they showed that they aren't intimidated by big names. Tennessee is in six kinds of trouble right now, and this is a rough spot for them. Take the Jaguars.
Denver at Baltimore: Denver is the luckiest unbeaten team in the league right now, and they just aren't good enough to keep it going. Baltimore hasn't been perfect by any means, but they are at home and should have the matchup they need. Take the Ravens.
New York Giants at Houston: This is one of those games in which I wish I could bet against both teams right now. Houston can't out of their own way. The Giants just aren't very good and aren't able to maximize their offensive weapons. Coin flip. Take the Texans at home.
L.A. Chargers at L.A. Rams: The Chargers haven't been as good as we hoped so far. The Rams, if anything, have been even better. This is a good test for the home team, but one that they should pass. Take the Rams.
Chicago at Arizona: Chicago's defense is legitimate, and the offense isn't as much of a liability as it could be. That's a combination that will win some games this year. Including this one. Arizona is really bad right now, and they'll show it again here. Take the Bears.
Dallas at Seattle: I hate this game so much. The Cowboys are as underwhelming as a decent team can be right now. The Seahawks are a team on a serious decline. There just isn't much to like here. Take the Seahawks at home, but don't feel good about it.
New England at Detroit: New England should be angry here, and they won't be interested in getting beaten by their former coordinator. And the Lions aren't playing well enough to beat anyone right now. Take the Patriots.
Pittsburgh at Tampa Bay: Rule No. 1 - never pick against Ryan Fitzpatrick. I just wish I knew that the last two weeks. Take the Bucs.
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