We saw a little bit of everything last week: horrific officiating in Denver, incredibly dumbass showboating in Dallas, a seemingly lame duck coach winning by 16 points, and a team from New England putting a halt to 76,000 J-E-T-S Jets! Jets! Jest! fans all to ready to shovel the dirt.
As for the picks, we had an incredibly mediocre 8-7 week (thanks to the cancellation in Houston, only 15 games were on the docket).
Week 3 sees some very intriguing matchups - Pittsburgh/Philly and Dallas/Green Bay the most prominent. Some of the lines seem very wacky, and if we've learned anything, it's to go with the wacky. On to the choices:
Kansas City (+4.5) over ATLANTA
As bad as KC looked at home last week vs. the Radiers, and trsut us, it was bad, we just have issues with the Falcons being 4.5 point faves over anyone. Tyler Thigpen, with a week of first team reps under his belt, starts at QB for KC. On second thought, maybe this is simply a heart pick.
Atlanta 20 Kansas City 17
BUFFALO (-8.5) over Oakland
Surprising Bills, at home, will in no way, shape or form allow the Radiers to even sniff 300 yards on the ground. Force JaMarcus Russel to out it up, and bad things will happen. Toss in the uncertainty surrounding Lane Kiffin, and you've got the recipe for a Buffalo Blowout.
Bills 27 Raiders 10
CHICAGO (-3.5) over Tampa Bay
Not loving the Bucs on the road, and thinking that Mr. Forte will pop a few big runs, allowing the Bears to move to 2-1.
Bears 20 Bucs 16
TENNESSEE (-4.5) over Houston
Impromptu bye week for TExans last week won't help here. Titans look tough, and should be able to cover this number in their own digs.
Titans 24 Texans 13
MINNESOTA (-3.5) over Carolina
Let's see, 0-2 Vikes favored over 2-0 Panthers? Yeah, that makes sense. Is Gus Frerotte that much of a difference maker? We'll see. He can't help but improve an offense that had to settle for 5 FG's last week. Panthers might be due for a bit of a letdown here.
Vikings 23 Panthers 17
NEW ENGLAND (-12.5) over Miami
And you thought the days of double digit Pat lines were over? Well, they likely are after this week. Matt Cassell will act as the caretaker of the offense, while 3 headed running back attack will keep Fish on their heels all afternoon. Pat D will harass Pennington all day.
Patriots 30 Dolphins 13
NY GIANTS (-13.5) over Cincinnati
Early season scheduling gifts just keep coming for Big Blue. No way do they letdown against hapless Bungles. Carson Palmer's feet are already shuffling...
Giants 31 Bengals 10
WASHINGTON (-1.5) over Arizona
Skins found some life last week, and this Cardinal team has yet to really be tested. Washington defense can bottle up the immobile Kurt Warner while Clinton Portis and Co. will grind up yards, and clock.
Redskins 24 Cardinals 13
DENVER (-5.5) over New Orleans
Saints have trouble stopping anyone consistently, and Broncos offense is in mid-season form (despite "assistance" from Ed Hoculi). Another shootout? Very, very likely?
Broncos 37 Saints 28
Detroit (+3.5) over SAN FRANCISCO
Egads, we're actually taking the Lions? On the road? Yep - they hung tough before late cosmetic scores led to Packer blowout last week, while the Niners just seem like the kind of team that will play a tight game every week.
49ers 27 Lions 24
SEATTLE (-9.5) over St. Louis
Seahawks are all over the place, but the Rams are a straight up mess.
Seahawks 31 Rams 16
BALTIMORE (-1.5) over Cleveland
Did you hear that thump? It was the Browns, crashing back to Earth. It's gonna be a long year in Cleveland, as maybe, just maybe, this team wasn't really as good as everyone thought.
Ravens 17 Browns 10
PHILADELPHIA (-2.5) over Pittsburgh
Home team pick, plain and simple. Iggles looking dangerous, and you just know the defense will clamp down after allowing Dallas to rack up 40+. Status of Big Ben casts a bit of a shadow over Pitt as well.
Eagles 24 Steelers 20
INDIANAPOLIS (-5.5) over Jacksonville
Add Bob Sanders to the list of Indy's walking wounded, which is another huge blow - recall how the run defense was shredded in 2006 while he was out. Jags, pre-season Super Bowl pick for many a writer, drop to 0-3? It's more likely than you think.
Colts 23 Jaguars 13
GREEN BAY (+2.5) over Dallas
First real test for Aaron Rogers, on the big stage against the Big Bad Cowboys. WE get the feeling that this is where Dallas will stumble - Philly exposed some flaws in the defense last week which a good team like the Pack can exploit, while the tough Green Bay defense will put some heat on Romo and Co.
Packers 23 Cowboys 20
NY Jets (+8.5) over SAN DIEGO
Normally, a team as good as the Chargers, staring 0-3 in the face, would be an automatic pick. A few reasons why we're going the other way: 1) Chargers have had a hell of a time stopping anyone thus far, and letting Brett Favre have all kinds of time means he'll eventually find someone to throw to, 2) LT is nicked up, and losing your most synamic offensive force has to knock your effectiveness down a notch or two, 3) getting jobbed last week in Denver seems to have made the whiny Chargers even more so, if that's even possible. Shockingly, we like the Jets to win outright.
Jets 27 Chargers 26
Best Bets: Giants, Patriots, Broncos
Last Week: 8-7
Season total: 17-14
Last Week: 1-2
The Draw of the Cards
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