Sunday, October 3, 2010

Week 4 Picks

Yes, the picks column makes a return this week after a hiatus for Week 3. More time to write this weekend, in what's shaping to be one where seasons can either be saved or fall apart.

(Home team in CAPS)

TENNESSEE (-7) over Denver

I don't think Denver travels well, evident by their loss to the Jaguars. The other thing about this game is the Titans can score in the red zone with Chris Johnson (expect versus Pittsburgh), while the Broncos have their struggles.

PITTSBURGH (-2) over Baltimore

Toughest game to pick, except I'm sure it will be under 34 points. I think Pittsburgh's defense is a little better than Baltimore's and I'm not so sure that Joe Flacco is a little bit better than Charlie Batch. Big Ben comes back to a 4-0 team.

CLEVELAND (+3) over Cincinnati

The Bengals have been on the edge the last two weeks, but they pay this week. Carson Palmer's been all kinds of bad, but the Bengals won the last two because Flacco matched Palmer's badness and the Panthers are awful. The Browns might not be awful and will be just as up for the Bengals as they were the Ravens.

Detroit (+14) over GREEN BAY

Don't know what to expect from the Packers, actually a little afraid they come home and blow out the Lions. However, Detroit's no pushover and I think they keep this close, maybe even scoring a late TD for the cover.

NEW ORLEANS (-14) over Carolina

This is more anti-Panthers than pro-Saints. I really don't know when Carolina will win, but it won't come in the Superdome. Not if Drew Brees can stand for four quarters. Saints right themselves here.

San Francisco (+7) over ATLANTA

Going with my gut, much like last week's Cowboys victory over the Texans, you have one team, who beat their top rival in emotional fashion, coming home to take on a team that just took it in the chin after being lauded a contender for a better 2010. Everyone expects the Falcons to win, but I think this is a trap game and the Niners get it done on the road for my upset special.

ST. LOUIS (+2.5) over Seattle

It's simple, the Rams aren't that bad and the Seahawks don't travel well. Even those in St. Louis have bought in since I haven't seen any blackouts for their games. Who knows, maybe the Rams can win the division?

Jets (-6.5) over BUFFALO

Okay, Jets; you just beat the Pats and Dolphins using a well-run offense and just enough defense. Let's see you avoid the trap in Buffalo before the Monday nighter with Favre and the Vikes. Prove to me that you're true contenders, don't play down to the Bills, even in Orchard Park.

Indianapolis (-8) over JACKSONVILLE

Probably my toughest pick this week since the Jags always show up for the Colts, but if David Garrard continues his putrid play, how can Jacksonville keep up with Peyton Manning, after being torched by Michael Vick last week.

Houston (-3.5) over OAKLAND

Perfect elixir for the Texans to have a date with the Raiders after the Cowboys loss. I will say though that if you're going to beat Oakland, do it early or they will hang around. Losing here would make the first two games seem like forever ago.

SAN DIEGO (-9) over Arizona

The Chargers play much better at home (though if this was in Glendale, I'd think they win) and the Cardinals haven't played well at all this year and could just as easily be 0-3. As long as the Chargers don't start slow, they'll win going away.

Washington (+6) over PHILADELPHIA

Donovan McNabb makes his long-anticipated return to Philly and will see Vick play QB like he did circa 2000-02, only with better weapons. However, I wanted to see Vick play against a better defense than the swiss cheese of Jacksonville and not-ready-for-primetime Lions. I think McNabb wills his way to revenge.

Chicago (+3.5) over GIANTS

The Giants will unveil their brand new Ring of Honor tonight, but could probably use some of those guys to play. I was all set to pick the Giants this week, since the Bears aren't that good, you can pass rush them and throw over them. Until Mathias Kiwanuka was sidelined with a bulging disc. He's been their best player on defense and most indispensable. No one else to shift from DE to DL to LB like Kiwanuka can, not complain and have success. That and the thought of our blockers against Julius Peppers make me think this isn't in the cards (hope I'm wrong).

MIAMI (+1) over New England

Always tough to play the Dolphins in Miami, especially if it's hot. The Pats historically and in the Brady years have had their issues. Unlike the Jets, the Dolphins know they have to stop their offense. Unlike the Jets, the Pats defense will allow Chad Henne to find Brandon Marshall and Co, while Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams will run the rest of the time.

Week 2: 9-6-1
Last week: 8-8
Season total: 26-19-3

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