This season has been crazy. Maybe I got a little reckless last week taking the Panthers +4.5 over the Falcons, but there is no logical explanation for the Buccaneers not only covering, but beating the Saints. Somehow, I managed to finish 7-6, putting me at 51-39 overall. Respectable, but I can do better. So as an apology, here is LeSean McCoy punching Andy Reid in the gut in slow motion.
As always, the lines are from ESPN and my picks are in caps.
Atlanta Falcons at DETROIT LIONS (-3.5)
Run the ball. That’s how you beat the Detroit Lions. The Lions led by ten after the first quarter, but the 49ers kept handing the ball to Frank Gore and it worked. Gore finished with 15 carries for 141 and a touchdown. Will Michael Turner and the Falcons follow that game plan? I’m betting that Jim Schwartz has his Lions team too fired up for it to matter.
CHICAGO BEARS (-0.5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
This game is in London, so logic has no place here. Unless the Buccaneers can injure Lovie Smith like they did Sean Payton, I’m going with the Bears.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (+3.5) at Cleveland Browns
Oh God, I’m drinking the Pete Carroll Kool-Aid.
DENVER BRONCOS (+3.5) at Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins realize that Matt Moore was benched for Jimmy Clausen, right? Well, they probably do as they’re all in on the Andrew Luck Sweepstakes. Timmy Tebow finally gets his chance here for Denver.
Houston Texans at TENNESSEE TITANS (-3.5)
Houston is still missing Andre Johnson the Titans are coming off their bye week. The only thing that worries me is that the Titans are interested in Terrell Owens. Gulp.
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS (-1.5) at New York Jets
Against the Dolphins last week, the Jets did not get a first down until their scoring drive at the end of the first half. Luckily for the Jets, Revis has good hands. Luckily for the Chargers, Rivers should be able to avoid them.
Washington Redskins at CAROLINA PANTHERS (-2.5)
If only Cam Newton could play defense. The Panthers have allowed 28+ points to every team they have faced this season, except for the Jaguars. Hopefully the offense can outscore John Beck this week.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (+3.5) at Oakland Raiders
Kansas City has been a different team since getting outscored 87-10 in their first two games. In week three, they narrowly lost to the Chargers and then won two straight going into their bye week. Coming out of that bye, they have the Carson Palmer led Oakland Raiders. Why wouldn’t you take the Chiefs?
Pittsburgh Steelers at ARIZONA CARDINALS (+3.5)
When I first saw the Cardinals favored by only 3.5 points, I was shocked. I would have ran to my nearest online sports betting website and bet all my money on the Steelers. That is, if gambling were legal. But then I thought about this line a bit more. The Steelers are 1-2 on the road. They lost 35-7 to the Ravens and 17-10 to the Texans. Their one road win was a 23-20 victory over the Colts. The Cardinals are coming off a bye week and are 1-1 at home. Call me crazy, but I’m taking the Cardinals.
ST. LOUIS RAMS (+12.5) at Dallas Cowboys
The Rams are 0-5 against the spread this year, so I really want to take the Cowboys here. However, I was 0-3 last week when using records against the spread to back up my pick. Have to take the Rams to cover.
GREEN BAY PACKERS (-8.5) at Minnesota Vikings
Aaron Rodgers is playing indoors and Christian Ponder is starting for the Vikings. Also, Ponder will think twice about touching a football after Bernard Berrian. And you should be thanking me right now. It took a lot of willpower to stop myself from including a Ponder pun here.
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (+13.5) at New Orleans Saints
Saints’ head coach Sean Payton had knee surgery on Monday and started rehab this week. I don’t think he has had enough time to prepare for the Colts.
BALTIMORE RAVENS (-7.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars
Outside of that inexplicable Tennessee game, the Ravens have outscored their opponents 135-45. Blaine Gabbert is going to have to wait at least one more week to get that first win.