70-47-1 on the year, 8-5 last week.
If you’re reading this on a weekly basis (first off, thank you; secondly, my condolences) you’ve noticed a severe drop-off in my writing. The practice has picked up, and I really haven’t had much time to think about much else. There’s a space that this blog used to fill, and now I’m overflowing.
Giants at Seahawks – The Giants have two things going for them: 1) Everyone has rightfully forgotten about them, and 2) Their stretch run has 5 ridiculously easy games that have actually become easier down the stretch. All they need to do is be 6-5 after 11 games an-oh wait they’re 3-5 now? This is a must-win? Seahawks 30, Giants 17. This game will be a mess in the first half.
Niners at Saints – If you think the 4-4 Niners are just going to lay down and call it a year, remember that this game last year had a very controversial finish with the Ahmad Brooks roughing the passer penalty that gave New Orleans life and the win at home they desperately needed. I just don’t think this Niners team is very good, and even if it was, I don’t think it’s together enough to use that motivation and overcome the Home Dome advantage. Saints 27, Niners 20. While I’ve been impressed with the Niners’ reinventing themselves as a passing team, it’s not going to immediately contend without some fine tuning this off-season.
Chiefs at Bills – For my money, the most interesting game of the day. Today is all about the Bills’ talent. You know Andy Reid is going to coach circles around Doug Marrone, the only question bore here is “Will it be enough?”. I think Buffalo would give KC a run were its backfield healthy, but without it I think the Chiefs are way too balanced to screw this up so bad that they’d blow it. Chiefs 26, Bills 20.
Dolphins at Lions – Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeveryone’s on that Miami bandwagon, huh? (Alright, so am I. I traded Percy Harvin for Ryan Tannehill after Rivers blessed me with a negative-point QB performance for my now 2-7 fantasy team.). A big part of the reason Miami’s offense is clicking now is that they’ve utilized Tannehill in the run game for big plays. People have forgotten he played WR in college, and when he catches defenses off-guard and takes off he looks like the fastest guy on the field. Take that away with some dominant defensive tackles to disrupt the misdirection and some speedy linebackers to set the edge, and I think you have the antidote. Lions 23, Dolphins 21.
Bears at Packers – For everyone who thinks Jay Cutler is the problem in Chicago…
…yeah, it’s the defense. The quarterback whispering of Marc Trestman has produced positive results, but just as Rex Ryan could never get the offensive mind to complement him in New York, I think Trestman’s obvious defensive defects could get him canned in Chi-town if not resolved by the end of next season. Aaron Rodgers tends to have his way with the Bears, but frankly he’s having his way with most defenses lately. Packers 38, Bears 34. I don’t expect Cutler to back down this time. Take the over.
Cowboys at Jaguars (UK) – This is going to look like a game for exactly 19 minutes. The first quarter will either have no score or the Jags up 3-0 or 7-3 when Romo hits that first big play to Bryant and sucks the air out of Jacksonville from overseas. The Jaguars have nothing to contain Bryant and can’t cover the other guys one-on-one if Bryant is doubled, which means they’re going to be doing alot of guessing. The only way the Jaguars are coming back with a W is if they send 9 and invite the personal fouls in trying to exacerbate Romo’s back and get him out of the game. Cowboys 27, Jaguars 10.
Rams at Cardinals – Has there ever been a 3-5 team that was more the toast of the town than this Rams team? Sure, they’re feisty, and their quarterback is a great story (and ABSOLUTELY belongs in the NFL after this year if he leaves) . Even when St. Louis was worse than this, they’d always given their superior divisional opponents a game. I expect the same here. Cardinals 19, Rams 16.
Other winners – Baltimore, Denver, Pittsburgh, Atlanta
Perhaps the most striking thing about Atlanta’s initial blowout of Tampa Bay on Thursday night some weeks ago is that if the Bucs exact revenge today, they’d have the same record. Sign Steve and I up.