Week 4 – the NFL lockout is slowly becoming a distant memory and the playoff race is taking shape…well not quite. But we are one quarter of that way done with a football season that almost didn’t happen. Tie flies when you’re having fun!
Keeping with tradition, we gaze into the crystal balls of the necromancers of the NFL over at ESPN. We’ll look into their picks from last week, this week and see how I rank among them. Who am I picking this week? What’s my record thus far? Read on for my breakdown and analysis of each game.
Panthers @ Bears: I’m all by my lonesome on this pick, folks. Yes, the Bears are at home. But their defense is allowing 277.3 yards per game. They haven’t allowed for one rushing TD all season. This all bodes well for newcomer Cam Newton, who ranks 3rd in passing yards – behind Drew Brees and Tom Brady. Sorry Chicago but it’s not going to happen this week. Panthers win.
Bills @ Bengals: Buffalo is on their way up (3-0). Cincy is on their way down, with two straight losses and a dope dealing Jerome Simpson. It looks like it’s back to being the Bengals. But how about that Ryan Fitzpatrick and Fred Jackson? Bills all day.
Titans @ Browns: Tennessee are ranked 2nd in shutting down the passing lanes, tied for 1st in least amount of TD’s allowed with 4 for the season. The Browns, however, are right behind the Titans with only 5 TD’s allowed. Both teams match up well, offensively. Tennessee will be trying to rediscover who they are, after losing Kenny Britt. The Browns have the home field advantage. But look for the Titans to find their “new” identity this Sunday. Titans win.
Lions @ Cowboys: Dallas had a nice little win for themselves last week. Tony Romo went out and made the statement that if he were a brand of ice cream, it wouldn’t be Mister Softee. That having been said, the only points that they were able to put on the board were field goals. They looked sloppy, plain and simple. Stripper poles or not, the Lions are just too much for the Cowboy defense, who are giving up 288 yards per game. Matthew Stafford will pick apart Dallas’ defense. Lions win.
Vikings @ Chiefs: I am calling this one the Battle Of The Bums. Both are nestling in to the basement of their respective divisions. To be honest, I am a little surprised at the poor play from the Chiefs. These guys clinched the AFC West last season, which isn’t much to brag about. Regardless, the Vikings are the least suckie team of the two. Vikings win.
Redskins @ Rams: Washington had a tough loss last week. Rex Grossman stormed off of the field without shaking anyone’s hand and proved two things. 1) That he was very upset by the last minute loss. 2) That he isn’t the classiest act in the lineup. The Rams, well…they’re just about the worst team in the NFL right now. This one is a no brainer. Skins win.
49ers @ Eagles: The sting of the crushing defeat that the birds took last week has no doubt left a VERY sour taste in their mouth. They’re playing at home and MUST save face. They will be pulling out all the stops…if they went to the stop store and bought a new batch. I think they used ‘em all up last week. Eagles win.
Saints @ Jaguars: Did I say the Rams were the worst team in the NFL earlier? I meant to say it was the Jaguars. NO! it’s the Rams! No! Jaguars! Saints win. Lock of the week.
Steelers @ Texans: They’re old. They’re tired. They’ve danced with the stars and are all tuckered out. Yes, the Pittsburgh Steelers have fizzled out and a new day is dawning. The Texans just need to keep Mike Wallace in check and they should be fine. Texans win.
Giants @ Cardinals: The Cards’ defense is weak on the rush and the pass. After the outing that Big Blue had last week, this game should be a continuation of the momentum that they have working in their favor right now. Look for Eli Manning, Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw to have big number days. Giants win.
Falcons @ Seahawks: Seattle’s offense is…how do I put this mildly…awful! Their O-line is last in the league. Atlanta has been coming on strong and seem to be headed back up the ladder. Look for more good things from Tony Gonzalez this week. Falcons win.
Broncos @ Packers: Really? Green Bay shouldn’t even have to play this game. Just give them the “W” and we’ll all go out drinking. Packers win…obey the cheese.
Patriots @ Raiders: With that spanking that Bill Belichik and co. got last week, they will be out to make a HUGE statement. I know. I know. Some of you out there were thinking that the Pats MIGHT actually go for one of those “undefeated” seasons. Well, that bubble has been burst. But, rejoice! They’ll beat the Raiders this week. Pats win.
Dolphins @ Chargers: Tis a long way for the fish to swim only to get caught in the Chargers’ net. Phillip Rivers. Any questions? Chargers win.
Jets @ Ravens: With Jets C Nick Mangold still injured, the chances of them winning are dramatically reduced. he adds a big dynamic to that team that can not be understated. The Ravens have been playing with fire since their loss to the Titans. The rivalry – the Jets have lost the last 6 games against Baltimore. They have only played 7 games in total. Gang Green are facing the black birds on the road. The Jets have lost every away game against the Ravens since the rivalry began in 1997. Look for that particular tradition to continue. Ravens win.
Colts @ Buccaneers: It truly does break my heart to see an organization like the Colts reduced to the shell of a team that they are now. The best thing for them to do is lose all of their games and pickup Andrew Luck next year. The Peyton era is over, sadly. Bucs win.
There it is. Think I missed something? Let’s hear what you have to say. Your comments, suggestions and heckling are welcome.
Tags: Ahmad Bradshaw Bill Belichik Brandon Jacobs Cam Newton Chicago Bears Dallas Cowboys Drew Brees Eli Manning ESPN Giants/National Football League Green Bay Packers Michael Vick Minnesota Vikings National Football League New England Patriots New Orleans Saints NFC East Peyton Manning Philadelphia Eagles Phillip Rivers Rex Grossman Ryan Fitzpatrick Sean Kerr Tony Romo Washington Redskins