Friday, September 24, 2010
The Week 3 NFL Preview
Week 3. Teams are getting desperate enough to switch quarterbacks (Ryan! Fitzpatrick!) and some face must win situations, like the Cowboys if Wade Phillips wants to keep his job. The week features a good but not great slate of games. Here come the picks. They've been decent so far. What, I never said I knew it all, ok?
Tennessee at NY Giants (-3)
The Giants completely crapped the bed against the Colts on National TV. Not pretty. Tennessee played a rough game against the Steelers last week, and will look for Vince Young to show some of his Week 1 form instead of whatever happened last week. The Giants got destroyed by the run last week, and now face the best running back in football. It just feels like one of those ridiculous Chris Johnson games, so I'll take the Titans to cover and win.
Buffalo at New England (-14.5)
I am currently in the land of Massholes (well, we drove through it to get to New Hampshire), and Dad and I listened to Boston sports radio for a while. The hosts were interviewing Stephen Neal, an offensive lineman, trying to bait him into saying the Bills sucked. Neal didn't fall for it, and said the Bills were a "great team". When the interview ended, one host called it the 2nd most ridiculous thing he'd heard in two weeks (only behind Trent Dilfer saying that Philip Rivers is the QB he'd most want in a clutch situation) and they both had a good laugh. Sadly enough they were right. Tom Brady and the Patriots will be angry after last week and just kill the Bills. They'll cover that spread. But watch out for the RYAN FITZPATRICK ERA to begin. Such excitement. He's a GUNSLINGER. With a brain! aaaaand just as bad as Trent Edwards.
Cleveland at Baltimore (-10.5)
Like the Pats- Bills game, the Ravens will be looking for some redemption after last week's debacle against the Bengals, and their stifling defense will pillage Seneca Wallace. On ESPN tonight I saw that the football talking heads were discussing who was more likely to go 0-16- the Browns or Bills. And you know what? It's a legitimate question. Both these cities are just going to commit mass suicide. Oh yeah, Baltimore wins and covers.
Pittsburgh (-2.5) at Tampa Bay
Not sure what to think of Tampa Bay so far, but I also haven't watched a minute of either of their games. I do know Josh Freeman and Mike Williams have done well so far. That should run out against Pittsburgh's great defense, and I see the Steelers scraping out a victory with Charlie Batch at quarterback. Steelers win and cover.
Cincinnati (-3) at Carolina
Another road favorite, but it makes a lot of sense. The Bengals showed how stingy their defense can be last week in dismantling Joe Flacco. The Panthers are starting a punky rookie QB, Jimmy Clausen, making his NFL debut. It's not a great first opponent for him. The Bengals offense will be good enough (Carson Palmer should be decent, at least), the defense will frustrate Clausen and stop the running game, and the Bengals win and cover.
Atlanta at New Orleans (-3.5)
I have conflicting feelings over this. The Falcons have played badly against a good opponent and well against a bad opponent, so it's tough to properly place them. Matt Ryan still seems shaky to me in important situations and away from home. The Saints have looked merely decent and have been able to barely win in both games. Still, it's the defending Super Bowl champions at home. You have to believe they're going to come out with some fire and show that they own the NFC South. The Saints win and cover (I'm feeling a 7 point victory.
San Francisco (-3) at Kansas City
San Francisco showed they are better than what they showed in week 1 in their Monday Night game against the Saints. Still, they also showed that they aren't ready to be contenders as they couldn't finish that game, a mark of good teams. Kansas City escaped against Cleveland and looked a little less explosive than week 1. I think the Niners win but Kansas City covers.
Detroit at Minnesota (-11.5)
ELEVEN AND A HALF POINTS? I take the Lions to cover in a heartbeat. They can score points and they have kept both their games close. The Vikings look like they have lost all their steam from last year and are limping along. The only way I see Minnesota winning by more than 11 is if Adrian Peterson goes buck wild, but I think Detroit will keep it close while Minnesota gets the victory.
Dallas at Houston (-2.5)
It's go time for the Cowboys, who need a win here to set a statement that they are actually contenders, and not just super hyped up like they always are. The Texans showed resiliency last week with a come back win against the Redskins, another mark of a good team. I think the Texans will feed off the home crowd and try and show that they are the new team to beat in Texas, and they'll cover the spread. Cowboys will keep it close and play desperately though.
Washington (-3.5) at St. Louis
Yep, St. Louis is still terrible. Washington is coming off a tough loss and will savor the opportunity to feast on a rookie quarterback and a weak defense. Also, any game featuring the Rams is approaching "hell game" territory.
Philadelphia (-2.5) at Jacksonville
Jacksonville played like they usually do on the road in the West- terribly. For Philadelphia, it's the beginning of the controversial Vick era. My Eagles fan friend, who "bleeds Green" and makes embarrassing facebook statuses about DeSean Jackson, went on a rant about how the Eagles traded McNabb so that Kolb could play and now they're abandoning him. That is a good point. Vick's only played well against the Lions, and his stats against the Packers were in garbage time. This is his first test, and I think he manages to get by with a win and the Eagles cover.
Indianapolis (-5.5) at Denver
Indianapolis demonstrated that they weren't quite done yet with a shellacking of the Giants on Sunday Night, while the Broncos ran up a number on the Seahawks. I'd say the Colts look better, and they'll shut down the Broncos, win, and cover the spread.
San Diego (-5) at Seattle
Despite what happened in week 1, the Seahawks looked bad against the Broncos. San Diego ripped up the groggy Jaguars and may be back in their form after a weak performance against the Chiefs. The Chargers will win and cover. Damn the NFC West is bad. I can't think of anything to say about the Seahawks... They have ugly uniforms?
Oakland at Arizona (-4.5)
Ok, so this is the hell game of the week. Dennis Miller is announcing this one WITH Tony Kornheiser, and Lucifer is serving you warm beer (Schmiddts) and Bit O Honeys. I actually think the Raiders, with Gradkowski at QB, will at least cover the spread and may just win. SILVER AND BLACK IS...DECENT ENOUGH TO WIN AGAINST BAD TEAMS!!! That's right, that's just how bad the Cardinals looked last week.
NY Jets at Miami (-2.5)
I think Miami has barely scraped by two not great teams (Bills and Vikings). The Jets broke out last week, revealing that they actually did possess an offense. Even without Revis and Braylon ".16" Edwards, I think the Jets will come in pissed off that Miami beat them so badly last year, and will try to prove they are the team to beat in the AFC East. They win and cover, as much as it pains me to say it.
Green Bay (-3) at Chicago
After last week's win against the Cowboys, it seems as if literally everyone in Chicago will not shut the hell up about the Bears. I have heard legitimate Super Bowl predictions already. Hey, here's a thought. The Bears escaped with a win against the Lions and beat a way overrated Cowboys team. Meanwhile, the Packers have not played two very good teams either, but I still think they have a better offense AND a better defense, so they'll win and cover.
So yeah. Not a lot of love for the underdogs, and a lot of love for the road favorites.