Through three weeks I am now 18-14 after a great 11-5 record last week. And according to my calculations, that means that I am just under the record of a playoff team, which has been my goal for the season. So here are my picks for Week 4, and I’m coming back this week. Home teams in CAPS.
Lions (+10.5) over BEARS
First, I must congratulate the Lions on breaking their 19 game losing straight. Now hear me out, I’m not picking the Lions to win their second game in a row, I just think they can keep this game within more than a touchdown and field goal. The Bears’ defense is not that great anymore without their leader, Urlacher. Cutler still needs a receiver and Stafford does have Megatron.
Bengals (-5.5) over BROWNS
The Lions of this year is the Browns. They have two incompetent quarterbacks, and aging injured running back, almost no receiving game, and a terrible defense. The Bengals are showing that if you get enough first-rounders on defense, it will become good eventually. Carson Palmer and Ochocinco are on a mission, and therefore, this is easily the Lock of the Week.
COLTS (-8.5) over Seahawks
Peyton Manning showed everyone why he is Peyton Manning. He beat up on the NFC Champs on Sunday Night. I did like the Seahawks earlier in the year, but they have not showed up. Add in the fact that Matt Hasselbeck probably won’t be starting this week. Julius Jones will have a big game against Indy’s poor running defense, but it won’t be enough.
GIANTS (-9.5) over Chiefs
If we’ve learned anything this year, its that the Chiefs are awful and the Giants are pretty good. Larry Johnson can’t run the ball against the Giants incredibly defensive line, so they’ll have to throw to Bobby Engram and Bobby Wade since Dwayne Bowe will miss his second straight game. Last week, the Giants beat up on the lowly Bucs 28-0. This will be a blow yet another out.
Buccaneers (+7.5) over REDSKINS
Speaking of the lowly Bucs, this one may actually be winnable, too. The Redskins lost to the aforementioned Lions last week and beat the dreadful Rams by only two points the week previous. Tampa Bay made a big move by benching starting quarterback Byron Leftwich for Josh Johnson, no not first-rounder Josh Freeman nor Marlins’ ace Josh Johnson. This guy broke all sorts of records in college, albeit San Diego, and is very, very athletic. The guy really intrigues me. So give me the Bucs and over a touchdown worth of points in a game of worthless teams.
Titans (-2.5) over JAGUARS
The Titans are easily the best 0-3 team this year, if not ever. They have a top 5 runningback duo and defense. The Jaguars have very little talent after Maurice Jones Drew, Mike Sims-Walker, and Marcedes Benz-Lewis. But enough of the funny talk, the Jags are much worse than the Titans who really need this game for any shot at the playoffs. Just to add to the Jaguars’ misery (as if TV blackouts aren’t enough), the spread should be triple what it currently is. The Titans will cruise.
HOUSTON (-9.5) over Raiders
This is a funny game. It’s as if Vegas wants us to go with the Raiders. But I’m not falling for their tricks. Houston wins big.
PATRIOTS (-2.5) over Ravens
The Ravens have been the best team in the NFL; their defense picked up where it left off last year and their offense is clicking on all cylinders, thanks to the resurectoin of Willis McGahee and development of Joe Flacco. But – and that’s a big but – this is New England at home. Belichick won’t let his team fall to 2-2 for the first time since 2005. Wes Welker, Vince Wilforks, and Jerod Mayo all practiced, so the Pats will have all their weapons.
SAINTS (-6.5) over Jets
This is probably the best match up of Sunday, just better than Pats/Ravens. Both teams are way exceeding expectations and have been anointed Super Bowl teams by some. The Jets have a ferocious D and the Saints have averaged 40 points a game. Defense wins championships but points win games. Saints are hard to beat at home and the fans at the Superdome will want this.
Bills (-1.5) over DOLPHINS
I guess that if you have three great games, you have to have a couple bad ones. This would be one of the bad ones. The Dolphins will be starting second year QB Chad Henne and the Bills are still starting Trent Edwards. The skills position players put Buffalo just over Miami with the foursome of Lee Evans, Terrell Owens, Fred Jackson, and Marshawn Lynch, who is coming off a 3-game suspension. The game could be interesting if the Dophins just run the Wildcat 100 plus times. Let’s hope for that.
Dallas (-3.5) over BRONCOS
Just like the Titans are the best 0-3 team this year, the Broncos are the worst 3-0 team. They beat Cincinnati because of a fluke touchdown and then beat Cleveland, and Oakland. One interesting note is that the quarterbacks are complete opposites. Tony Romo is a great stats quarterback but has been unimpressive in big games. For Kyle Orton, he is certainly in the bottom half stat-wise for QBs, but has a 23-12 career record. 23-12! But the Romo has a way better supporting cast than Orton, so look for Big D, but it’ll be close.
Rams (+10.5) over 49ERS
I am in no way picking the Rams to win he game, but they will keep this game under the large spread. The Niners are missing their top offensive threat for few weeks, Frank Gore, so they’ll be starting rookie Glen Coffee. So now they have Coffee at runningback, and at wide receiver they have the 57 year old Isaac Bruce and unipressive Josh Morgan. That doesn’t sound to good. But on the other side, the Rams are missing their best receiver, Laurent Jackson, and starting quarterback, Marc Bulger. That doesn’t sound to good either.
Chargers (+6.5) over STEELERS
Not only do I like the Chargers to win with the spread, but I like them to win the game. LaDainian Tomlinson will likely play in his second game of the year, and the high-flying San Diego offense will try to run over Pittsburgh’s defense without Troy Polamalu. The Steelers can’t run and the Chargers want to prove they are the best team in the AFC. Give the the points and Gates, Rivers, LT, Sproles, Jackson, Chambers, Merriman, Cromartie…
Packers (+3.5) over FAVRE (VIKINGS)
Ahh, the game of the week, and on Monday Night, no less. Favre will try to get revenge on the team who wouldn’t let him back, but the Pack will have something to say about that. Look for Aaron Rodgers to come up big against his former teacher and a big game from cornerbacks Charles Woodson and Al Harris. Also look for defenders to give a little extra oomph on their hits on him.
Last Week: 11-5
Pick of the Week: 2-0