Now what? Now that Super Bowl 41.5 is in the books, and the Pats appear on their way to a perfect season (one AP writer went so far as to say it was a virtual lock), what are we supposed to do? We're going to go out on a limb and say, what the hell, let's play the rest of the schedule out and see what transpires. Who knows, maybe we'll all learn something, and isn't that ultimately the point, kids?
On to the Picks, though with New England on their bye everything seems so......empty. Sigh.
CAROLINA (-4.5) over Atlanta
Neither team has shown much of anything, so we'll side with the home team and a relatively small line.
Panthers 24 Falcons 10
GREEN BAY (-6.5) over Minnesota
Pack return home after two big AFC West road wins, and will be primed to stop the only prong in the Viking attack: Adrian Peterson. It's obvious Minny coach Brad Childress reads this column, as he decided to use Peterson extensively last week, and the kid went ahead and set a new single game rushing record. You're welcome, Brad. That gets negated, however, by the idiotic team decision to fine WR Troy Williamson for burying his grandma (though today the team caved to public pressure and returned the check to Williamson). This from the team that gave us the infamous Sex Boat scandal last season. You stay classy, Vikings.
Packers 26 Vikings 13
KANSAS CITY (-4.5) over Denver
Chiefs should have been able to stave off Packers last week, but somehow allowed LB Donnie Edwards to cover a speedy wideout one-on-one while nursing lead late, with predictable big play results. Broncos have been one of the league's biggest disappointments, and do not win here since Elway retired. Think about Denver for a moment - last year, heading into a Thanksgiving Day showdown at Arrowhead, the team stood at 7-4 with the division in their grasp. After losing that night, overrated (no titles sans Elway) Head Coach Mike Shanahan decided to throw rokkie QB Jay Cutler into the starting role, and the team limped home to a 9-7 finish, missing the playoffs. At 3-5, a loss here would pretty much finish them off, and we're betting that is exactly what will happen, even as KC goes with Priest Holmes at HB.
Chiefs 23 Broncos 14
Buffalo (-2.5) over MIAMI
Only here would we take the Bills on the road, but this team has actually played pretty well of late. Think about it - if not for losing two winnable games ( a last second loss to Denver, and the ugly collapse against Dallas), these guys could be 6-2. No way they suffer a let down against the punchless Fish.
Bills 17 Dolphins 6
NEW ORLEANS (-11.5) over St. Louis
Drew Brees is the hottest QB not named Tom Brady right now, and this one could get ugly early. Betcha Sean Payton doesn't leave Brees in and have him throw the ball at that point though.
Saints 38 Rams 10
PITTSBURGH (-9.5) over Cleveland
Wow, this line is pretty large, don't you think? At home, look for the Pittsburgh defense to slow down Derek Anderson, Jamal Lewis and the rest of the high flying Brownies, and seize control of the division in the process.
Steelers 24 Browns 14
Jacksonville (+4.5) over TENNESSEE
Titans continue to win ugly each week, but they win. It can;t last forever, and Vince Young's erratic play is going to catch up with him sooner or later.
Titans 20 Jaguars 18
WASHINGTON (-2.5) over Philadelphia
Skins rebounded from Pat blowout with come from behind win at the Meadowlands, and even though we like Philly more on the road than at home, the number here is low enough to envision a narrow Washington victory.
Redskins 20 Eagles 17
BALTIMORE (-5.5) over Cincinnati
God, we hate taking the Ravens. No team is harder to root for (Brian Billick, Ray Lewis, need we go on?), and no team plays more havoc with the weekly pick sheet. the only team more difficult to pick and root for? The Bengals, thus the pick below.
Ravens 22 Bengals 16
ARIZONA (-1.5) over Detroit
No logic here - this is purely a "Vegas knows something we obviously don't" choice. How else could you explain it?
Cardinals 23 Lions 21
NY GIANTS (+1.5) over Dallas
Tough choice, but we're thinking the defense Tony Romo will see on Sunday will bear little to no resemblance to the unit he picked apart at will in Week 1. The pass rush is a monster, and will keep the pretty boy on his toes all afternoon. Eli Manning will do just enough to get the G-Men right in the thick of the NFC East title hunt.
Giants 27 Cowboys 24
Chicago (-3.5) over OAKLAND
Go ahead, Raiders, kick it to Devin Hester. Idiots.
Bears 27 Raiders 10
Indianapolis (-3.5) over SAN DIEGO
My oh my will Norv Turner be exposed this week. Colts are angry at themselves for letting the game get away in the last 10 minutes last week, and will take it out on the up and down Chargers, who were pitiful against the run last week.
Colts 31 Chargers 14
SEATTLE (-9.5) over San Francisco
It's an "On" week for the Seahawks as they return home, and the toothless Niners are the perfect foil. Once again, people will become convnced Seattle is a legitimate contender....until the next meltdown. This team isn;t very good, and may win the West through attrition thanks to games like this one.
Seahawks 34 49ers 14
BEST BETS: Colts, Seahwaks, Saints
Last Week: 11-3
Last 3 Weeks: 27-14 (65.9%)
Season Total: 75-55 (57.7%)
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Season Total: 13-8 (61.9%)