Week # 7 Picks
Record after Week # 6: 20-10-0 = 66% (4-1 in Week # 6)
Pick #1: Cardinals (+6.5) @ Vikings – Cardinals win it, 17-16
This game is about defense and special teams, I don’t care if it’s Kevin Kolb or John Skelton starting. Arizona has already beaten New England on the road, they beat Philadelphia last year on the road and had the Ravens, in Baltimore, down 24-6 – they are not a bad road team. The Cardinals are holding people to 16 ppg and let’s be honest about Minnesota – Leslie Fraser is a good coach but he is super conservative, 6 ½ points is a ton to give anyone in this football game. Christian Ponder, in his last 2 games (people are getting more film on him) has 4 TD’s but 4 INT’s as well. Arizona’s defensive coordinator Ray Horton does a phenomenal job on dialing up pressure packages that can create turnovers and get you to the quarterback. Percy Harvin is the offense right now – everybody is getting film, everybody is seeing that they are being super conservative with Christian Ponder. I get an outstanding defense and almost a touchdown, I’m not sure if they win but I’m taking the 6 ½ points, Arizona narrowly wins it 17-16.
Pick #2: Titans (+3.5) @ Bills – Titans win it, 28-27
This one’s a weird one, I don’t like either one of these teams, but I get a field goal with Tennessee. Firstly, the Bills are god awful against the run – worst in the NFL at 170 yards per game, an absolute mess! They have been poor all year. Linebackers for Buffalo? No other way to put it other than to say that a scout reported earlier in the week that they’re just slow and Chris Johnson isn’t! He had a respectable game last week with over 90 yards against the Steelers. Now on offense, the Titans have Matt Hasselbeck and they’ve got excellent offensive tackles in Michael Roos and David Stewart as they both are playing very well in protection. Right now, Tennessee has got a very deep and healthy group of receivers at their disposal now that Kenny Britt has returned from injury and had a long week to heal. In the end, the Titans have extra time, their offense is getting healthy, Hasselbeck – against this defense, should have time to throw and pick a part a weak backend. I’m taking Tennessee and the points to win this game, 28-27.
Pick #3: Cowboys (-2.5) @ Panthers – Cowboys win it, 27-17
Listen, Cam Newton right now – he’s not getting better, has 6 turnovers in 5 games, fumbled 3x in which his team luckily recovered the ball. Tony Romo makes his mistakes of course, but the difference is that he’ll have a much better defense at his disposal. Defensive linebacker and defensive back – the Cowboys have huge advantages in this game. Carolina is 13th in defense IN THE NFC! By the way, the offensive line for Tony Romo? Sacked only once in Baltimore, has not been under constant duress which is very good progress! The return of Phil Costa at center helped a great deal. The Panthers by the way are not a great pass rush defense. Here’s another issue: Romo is getting better protection and the Panthers’ cornerbacks are just okay, but their safeties have been a major liability when in coverage. Dallas is a better all around team, significantly better on defense, I think they control both lines of scrimmage and Dallas wins this game comfortably 27-17.
Pick #4: Redskins (+6) @ Giants – Giants win it, 27-26
Now again, this is more about “betting against the masses” because the masses tend to get high/low, high/low. Rule of thumb…bet against the masses! All the masses right now love the Giants. The Giants are returning from a huge West Coast win and who do they play after this game? The Dallas Cowboys! New York is going to be flat, they do this every year. By the way, as a home favourite, they are only 7-16-1 at home against the spread. Right now RG3 is athletic, showing great poise; tremendous running game helps behind him. Now of course, Justin Tuck, Osi Umenyiora and Jason Pierre-Paul (who by the way, is not having a great year so far) are all ferocious pass rushers. But Washington has 2 formidable tacklers with good size and athleticism in Trent Williams and Tyler Polumbus. The Redskins have an excellent ground game, they have versatility with RG3, and they can control the line of scrimmage and limit the Giants’ oppoutunities. This is betting against the public – it’s a perfect oppourtunity to seize on the masses. The Redskins getting 6 – I don’t know if they win, but don’t forget they beat the Giants twice last season and controlled both games, I’ll say Giants 27-26 but you have to take the 6 points.
Pick #5: Steelers (-1.5) @ Bengals – Steelers win it, 30-24
I am predicting that Pittsburgh will have a very solid next 2 months as they are 15-6 under Mike Tomlin, extra rest should help their veteran players like LaMarr Woodley. Now, the Steelers are best when they can utilize a good mixture of run and pass, Rashard Mendenhall is back in the lineup. Don’t forget that the Bengals are inconsistent defending the run. They have also been inconsistent in protecting Andy Dalton whose been sacked 17 times in 6 games. The advantage here is that Pittsburgh, a tremendous 3rd down team, with Emmanuel Sanders, Antonio Brown, Mike Wallace and Heath Miller – real weapons and the Bengals are all banged up in the secondary. The Steelers have their backs against the wall, they need to stay within striking distance of the Ravens – I don’t dislike the Bengals but I’m taking the better team here and swallowing the points, swallow the 1 ½ , 30-24 on Sunday Night Football.