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The Profit

Before we get to the NFL, I would like to send congratulations to my old high school football team, Belleville High School, which recently ended its 33-game losing streak. The team hadn't won a game since 2002, and the fact that they won last week against a team with a decent record lends me confidence that I, too, can maybe get on a bit of a roll here.

I know, you've heard this before. "I'm confident this week". I really am though. For the first time in what seems like forever, I had a good feeling picking the games. There were several no-brainers for me, and I've got a good feeling that a solid week is on the way. At least it isn't as tough as last week, that's for sure.

Speaking of last week, don't I love going 3-1 on my best bets, only to see my lock (again) fall short? At least the Chargers didn't give me a heart attack over the last five minutes of last week's game.

On to the picks…

Source: Yahoo.com

ATLANTA (-9.5) vs. GREEN BAY
According to me, the Falcons are the best team in the NFC. But it's not a "best team" thing like the Colts. It's more a default best team thing. Now I grant you, they are much better than Green Bay. But the Packers have played a number of tough, tight games where they just fell short at the end. I'm not saying they'll win, but they've played enough close games where I'll give them credit for at least hanging around. Now if you're scared off by Favre in a dome, that's perfectly OK. I just don't think this game will turn into a rout. PICK: Packers

CHICAGO (-13) vs. SAN FRANCISCO
I didn't want to lay this many points with Washington; why would I want to do so with an offense that is far worse? And possibly without its best player, Thomas Jones? PICK: 49ers

DETROIT (-4) vs. ARIZONA
Who cares? PICK: Lions

INDIANAPOLIS (-18) vs. HOUSTON
They're daring us - absolutely DARING US - to take the Texans. I mean, you can't lay 18 points with anyone in an NFL game. College? OK. But pros? Rarely, if ever. Well, I'm doing it. If you're worried about giving all those points, a quick peek at the NFL standings should pretty much put you at ease. PICK: Colts

JACKSONVILLE (-7) vs. BALTIMORE
I think we all pretty much know that Jacksonville is the new Seattle. Just when you expect them to go on a tear and blow teams out, they lose to the Rams and squeak by the Texans. So now that they are properly undervalued, everyone assumes they'll struggle against the Ravens. So that's the main reason I'm picking them. Just because opposite logic seems to work best with them. PICK: Jaguars

NEW ENGLAND (-3) at MIAMI
So we've got the Pats, coming off a brutal loss where they were embarrassed, going into Miami after the month of September against a Dolphins team that is proving to everyone is not very good. Yup, I like my odds there. PICK: Patriots

NEW YORK GIANTS (-9.5) vs. MINNESOTA
I've seen enough Giants games and am friends with enough Giants fans to know that this is the kind of game this team has (at least recently) historically lost. The Vikings are a terrible, putrid team. But it doesn't stop me from worrying that the Giants have played a bit over their heads. If they get to 7-2, they'll have fans in New York ready to put them in the Super Bowl. Which is precisely why they won't come through here. This week I expect a letdown, even when facing a team as bad as the Vikings are. PICK: Vikings

PITTSBURGH (-8) vs. CLEVELAND
I think the Steelers had their "bad team scares" the past two weeks against Baltimore and Green Bay. I don't see the Browns giving them much trouble, even with Charlie Batch leading Pitt. After all, in order to cover an eight point spread, the Browns would either need to hold the Steelers to 8 or less (not happening) or score at least a point (unlikely). PICK: Steelers

WASHINGTON (-1.5) at TAMPA BAY
For the second consecutive week, the Bucs are a home dog against a team with a record similar to theirs. I haven't had much faith in the Bucs from the beginning, and apparently Vegas doesn't, either. PICK: Redskins

PHILADELPHIA (-3) vs. DALLAS
George Carlin did a bit on his most recent HBO special in which he mentioned how parents "have things both ways". If their children turn out like gold, they take full credit. If they turn out messed up, it's not their fault and it must be the people they hang around with. With the Eagles, T.O. has been the bad influence over the Eagles all season long. He's being blamed for all of their many flaws. But even though he is a Grade A moron (obscure Simpsons reference), he isn't the only problem with the team. The "parents" (in this case Eagle fans and the national media) need to realize that there are far more issues than simply Owens. This was never more evident than watching the game the other night. If the Eagles struggled against the Redskins, what will they possibly do against a Cowboy team that is clicking on all cylinders? PICK: Cowboys

BEST BETS

BUFFALO (-2.5) vs. KANSAS CITY
The Chiefs should be favored in this game. The line must be a typo, it simply must be! Ironically, Priest Holmes' injury opens the door for the Chiefs to finally have a dominant run game, something the Bills are not very adept at slowing. This won't be close. PICK: Chiefs

CAROLINA (-9) vs. NEW YORK JETS
The Jets blew their opportunity to turn the season around last week. Coming off a loss like that, I don't see them having the ability to muster much of a fight against another quality opponent. The wind is out of the sails, and Brooks Bollinger won't have the same success against Carolina's D as he did against the Chargers. PICK: Panthers

DENVER (-3) at OAKLAND
None of the AFC West teams are good enough to the point where they should be favored on the road against the others, nor are any of them bad enough to where they should be a home underdog against any of the others. Got all that? PICK: Raiders

SEATTLE (-7) vs. SAINT LOUIS
The Hawks haven't been colossal disappointments to this point, so I'm sticking by them at home. This is the ultimate game to take Seattle. The Seahawks at home (where they're much better) against the Rams on the road (where they're worse). PICK: Seahawks

LOCK OF THE WEEK: Kansas City Chiefs


LAST WEEK

  • OVERALL: 7-6-1 (53.8%)
  • BEST BETS: 3-1 (75%)
  • LOCK OF WEEK: 0-1 (0%)

SEASON TOTALS

  • OVERALL: 62-65-3 (48.8%)
  • BEST BETS: 18-17-1 (51.4%)
  • PICK OF WEEK: 3-6 (33%)
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