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Sunday, October 31, 2004

NFL Picks for Week Eight/Halloween

Is anything sacred? We have football games on this of all holidays?

Not that I have posted much here of late, and not that anyone reads the page any more for that reason, but I'll throw up some picks yet again. I got cocky after my strong showing two weeks ago and crashed to earth last week with a 7-7 straight-up record that was 6-7-1 against the spread. The Patriots, six-point favorites, beat the Jets 13-7--gotta give it to the Vegas gurus once again. Yes, I did pick Atlanta last week, and they lost 56-10. At least I didn't take Dallas. I also should've gone with my gut on Miami and Arizona last week.

OK, enough living in the past. On to this week's selections, which in no way are an endorsement of sports betting. The only thing this site endorses is John Kerry for President. If I don't post again before Tuesday, remember to go vote!

NY Giants (+6.5) over Minnesota to cover and win

The Vikings only managed to put up 20 points last week, so their top-rated offense may be slowing down with the lack of running backs and Randy Moss limited by injury. The Giants may show some pride here after the loss to Detroit.

Philadelphia (-7) over Baltimore

Good game last week with the Eagles surviving in Cleveland. Their defense looks vulnerable, but Baltimore has no Jamal Lewis, Todd Heap or Jonathan Ogden today. The only way they win is if they get three TDs off defense and special teams. Don't the Terrell Owens-hating media members seem a little too giddy about the prospect of T.O. getting hit hard by Ray Lewis?

Green Bay (-1) over Washington

Yes, right, this one determines the outcome of the presidential election, blah blah. Brett Favre's life isn't going well lately and he usually plays well under such circumstances. It's unfortunate his wife has breast cancer, though we may at least get Bush out of office as a result.

Jacksonville (+1.5) over Houston to cover and win

OK, I'm getting on the Byron Leftwich bandwagon to the point that I'm even picking against my beloved Texans today.

Buffalo (-3.5) over Arizona

Bad teams, stay away.

Detroit (+3) over Dallas to cover and win

What the hell, let's try the Lions here. As I've said a few times before, the Cowboys are bad. In the wake of the rout in Green Bay last week, the media seem to be realizing that the emperor has no clothes here. I can't say I blame them, seeing as how Parcells got a team led by Quincy Carter to the playoffs last season.

Tennessee (-3) over Cincinnati

Two inconsistent teams playing here, so I won't pretend to know what will happen. The Titans are winless at home and the Bengals are winless on the road, so something's gotta give! And did you see Chad Johnson's car on Monday Night Football?

Kansas City (+1) over Indianapolis to cover and win

Well, I guess the Chiefs made a rather emphatic statement that they're back last week with eight rushing touchdowns. They seem to have the running game back in order, which means they can set up the pass against the Colts' weak secondary. After the Jags answered my call for someone to beat Indy last week, the Chiefs may turn the trick again (and give me a treat--so clever), exacting some revenge for last year's playoffs.

Denver (-7) over Atlanta

The Falcons' offense struggling is nothing new, but their defense getting run over is. It doesn't get much easier as they face the toughest running attack in the league in Denver, a club that won't hesitate to leave dislocated ankles in their wake. Let us all now condemn the chop block.

Seattle (-7.5) over Carolina

Wait, I thought the Seahawks were going to the Super Bowl, now they're 3-3? What gives? They badly need this win in Carolina against a Panthers team that is also unrecognizable from a team that actually was in the Super Bowl last season.

New England (-3) over Pittsburgh

No, I'm not picking against the Patriots until they lose a game. The Steelers have the offensive balance that it takes to beat New England, but every new QB who emerges like Big Ben eventually has the clock strike midnight (again with the cleverness). I'm thinking specifically of Tom Brady's 4 INT game back in 2001. The key is how well the Steelers can run it and whether the Pats can get Roethlisberger in 3rd-and-long situations.

San Diego (-6) over Oakland

Keep an eye on the Bolts, at 4-3 only a game behind Denver in the AFC West.

Chicago (-2) over San Francisco

Really a putrid Sunday night matchup here. If Tim Rattay can't go, it will be a quarterback rematch of the Miami-Ohio State Fiesta Bowl of a few years ago between Ken Dorsey and Craig Krenzel.

NY Jets (-7) over Miami

Herman Edwards was yelling at the reporters earlier this week, over what I'm not precisely sure. Someone seemed a little too preoccupied with what was in the papers.