Sunday, October 24, 2010

Week 7 picks

It's that time again. Picks: Cincinnati Bengals @ Atlanta Falcons: God, what a way to start. The Bengals aren't as bad as people think. They just have a habit of shooting themselves in the foot at the worst possible times. The Falcons on the other hand are an oddball; they pound bad teams into the floor and then struggle to beat the better sides. So which group do we throw the Bengals in? Bad team that the Falcons will pound? Better team that the Falcons will struggle against? My gut instinct is to give the Bengals the benefit of the doubt and say they take it. Bengals win. Pittsburgh Steelers @ Miami Dolphins: Probably not a high scorer on the cards, but a good game none the less. For me, the Steelers offense looked much better with Ben Roethlisberger in the line up and I can see the Steelers taking the early lead and forcing Chad Henne to air it out as the Dolphins play catch up. You have to think the Steelers defense will like the sound of that. Steelers win. Buffalo Bills @ Baltimore Ravens: Even though I've defended the Bills at time against what I feel has been unfair criticism of certain players, I have to say that the Bills are on their own for this one. I cant see them taking down a Ravens team that is very good still, despite their offensive coughs and splutters. Ravens win. Jacksonville Jaguars @ Kansas City Chiefs: I ask the question every week, but it's probably the most relevant one with regards to the Jaguars; which David Garrard will show up? Not that the Chiefs are an imposing offensive force to be reckoned with, but their defense is a hell of a lot better than the Jaguars. As we saw against the Titans on Monday night, the Jaguars can self destruct in the face of a tight D, while the Chiefs have remained pretty disciplined, even in the face of adversity. I don't fancy the Jags chances in Kansas. Chiefs win. Cleveland Browns @ New Orleans Saints: I can just see it now. The return of Darren Sharper from injury this week coinciding with the arrival of a Browns offense led by a rookie QB. Sharper gets a pick or two and then I have to listen to a week of "Darren Sharper was the missing piece!! Defensive MVP of the league!! The Saints will 2-peat 4 sur!!". No, no they wont. And learn to spell, a$$hat (It's 'who that?' What are you eleven?). Sadly though, the Saints will probably win this one. Saints win. Washington Redskins @ Chicago Bears: The wheels are falling off the Bears bandwagon quicker than the Democrats off of Obamas'. And the Redskins are poised to take advantage. LB Brian Orakpo looks like a child whose been promised he can go to Disneyland at the weekend and is now getting progressively agitated as the time approaches. You sense he is about to explode in phenomenal fashion. The only problem for me is the Redskins offense matched with the Bears D. It's not a good combo for the Redskins, but they should have enough to squeak it out. Redskins win. San Francisco 49ers @ Carolina Panthers: Surely San Francisco. Surely my guys in red and gold can't lose to the Panthers? Surely? I wouldn't put it past them. That's how bad our season is. I'm looking at the Carolina Panthers who are truly terrible on offense and I'm thinking to myself; "this isn't a guarantee..." How can this be? How did the Panthers sink to this level and how did the 49ers get sucked down with them? It has to stop this week. 49ers win. Surely...... St. Louis Rams @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Every year each team plays 6 games inside its division, 4 games against teams from another division in its own conference, and 4 games against teams from another division in the opposite conference. To fill out the remaining two game gap, teams then play the other two teams in its conference that finished in the same position within their respective divisions last season (got all that?). This has resulted in the almost annual Colts vs. Patriots game. This year it has given us the Rams vs the Buccaneers, god help us. The Rams have improved quite a bit with a steady hand at the tiller in Sam Bradford. Their defense has even remembered what it's like to get a sack. I have to go with St. Louis on this one. Rams win. Philadelphia Eagles @ Tennessee Titans: Hmm. I always seem to start at least one pick per week by saying that. This week it's the Eagles and Titans (though I probably didn't need to explain that). But I only say hmm for a reason, usually being that I have no Earthly clue who is going to win the game. The Eagles offense has potential, regardless of who suits up as the QB. But without DeSean Jackson among its receiving corps, the game just got a bit harder for the Eagles. The Titans defense meanwhile has the talent to generate heaps of pressure when they want to and could really put Kolb in some tough spots. I'm not sure how confident I am with this, but I'm backing Tennessee to come out, play conservative "Titans" football and sneak it. Titans win. Arizona Cardinals @ Seattle Seahawks: The Cardinals (or "Cradinals" as I normally end up mis-spelling their name each week during my first draft) are really not anything approaching a good team. Luckily for them, nor are Seattle! I felt the Seahawks drafted really pretty well, but that's more of a looking-into-a-crystal-ball-at-the-future type thing, not so much this year. I also can't stand the motivational style of the worlds single finest Bill Walsh look-a-like; Pete Carroll . Every time he gets mic'ed up and I hear him tell his players about how great everything is and how great they are, it just makes me cringe. Maybe it's just because I'm such a miserable git. Either way, I desperately want to say that the Seahawks are vastly over rated and have bodged all their wins together this season in some Frankenstein-esque combination of offense, defense and special teams, thus they will lose and be exposed by the Cardinals. But the reality is the 'Cradinals' are just that bad. Seahawks win. We interrupt this blog post to point out that I've just noticed that the NFL has changed the Super Bowl logo for this year, so it now looks distinctly less like a p**** compared to last year. Back to the picks. New England Patriots @ San Diego Chargers: What, you think I trust the Chargers to win a game now? Especially given their record on special teams, specifically protection. Remember the Dolphins fired their special teams coordinator earlier this year after a disastrous performance against..... the Patriots. Screw that. Patriots win. Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos: The Broncos are starting to frustrate me. I picked them at the beginning of the season as surprise winners of the AFC West. To help me in this bold endeavour, the Chargers have kindly agreed to systematically fall apart. The Raiders are.... well they're the Raiders. And although the Chiefs have been good defensively, they obliged me by not upgrading their offense at the QB position, leaving them open to lose their fair share of games along the way. The Broncos then have had the road to the division title opened for them... and have decided to take a detour across the field of "no running game". It's there, trust me. They Broncos can run, if they just tried. They even -- dare I curse them by saying it -- have the inner workings of a Super Bowl caliber team in the making (I would openly admit to being a partial Broncos fan, but that won't sit very well when I head to Wembley next week to watch them against the 49ers). So where was all this going? Honestly, I've forgotten. Broncos win. Minnesota Vikings @ Green Bay Packers: The Mummy Returns to Green Bay (are we getting sick of Mummy related jokes yet? No? good). They say that where there's smoke, there's fire; and where there's a Vikings vs. Packers game, there will inevitably be a flame war somewhere on the Internet. Who's the better QB blah, blah, who's more likely to win a play off game this year, blah, blah, did the Packers make the right choice etc, etc. Well, the point could well end up being mute, because the reality is that the Packers defense is more banged up than an abused spouse and the secondary has more holes in it than a politicians election pledge. Stick that up against the combination of Brett Favre to Randy Moss and what you end up with is a one-legged man at a butt kicking competition. Vikings win. New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys: Hmm (that's twice this week). The trouble with this game is that the Giants seem to be rather selective as to which games they decide they're actually going to show up to and play properly. The Cowboys at least have a degree of consistency; turning up to every game with no serious intention of winning it. If they did then maybe they wouldn't keep getting flagged for things like excessive celebration, though the way things have been going in Dallas lately, every touchdown is a positive. There's just something about "Americas Team" that makes them so easy to hate. Maybe it's the smug sense of self-supremacy and entitlement that seems to hang around the team. Or maybe it's just because they have the biggest telly in the neighbourhood. Either way, I'm taking New York. Giants win. There we go. 14 games, 14 picks. Given the way this season has gone, if I can go above .500 Ill be happy. Have a great day everyone.

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