Dec. 8, 2011
It is amazing how fast the NFL season goes by. We are already at week 14, and before we know it the Super Bowl will be here. Then the April draft, mini camps and then pre season just a couple of short months later. The NFL really is a year round fascination now, and will be for years to come, if not forever. Unlike the NBA, I think there would be outrage if the NFL ever lost any games due to a labor strike or owner lockout, which is why the potential conflict this year ended somewhat quickly. It is a multibillion dollar business which grows more every year, and it will continue to get bigger and bigger. The possibilities really are endless.
There are a lot of big games this week, many which will have an impact on the post season. Hopefully I can have another good week as I climb back towards .500 for the season. Let's get to the picks.
As always home team in CAPS.
Pittsburgh 14 Cleveland
The Steelers are fighting for home field advantage in the AFC. The Brownies will not stand in their way. The points are high but it won't matter here. Take the Steelers at home.
Miami 3 Philadelphia
The Dolphins are on a roll, but it is too little too late. Perhaps they have saved Tony Sporano's job though. Andy Reid's job is in jeopardy in Philadelphia, but it could just simply be time for a change. The Eagles just need the season to be over.
New England 7 1/2 Washington
The Patriots, as usual, are a handicapper's worst nightmare, as they proved last week. They are impossible to deal with on a weekly basis. This is why I think this is a tough game handicapping wise. The Redskins stink, but my instinct is telling me to take them this week. But because they stink so bad, I won't listen to my instinct. Take New England here, but very cautiously.
GREEN BAY 11 Oakland
After seeing last week's win against the Giants, I think the Packers have an excellent chance of finishing the regular season undefeated. The playoffs are a different story though. But, Oakland this week isn't the playoffs. So, therefore, I am picking the Packers.
Atlanta 3 CAROLINA
The Falcons are right in the thick of it in the NFC, while the Panthers are, well, not. To their credit though Carolina has played very hard and have kept most of their games pretty close. I don't think they have much of a chance here though. The Falcons need every game they can get, and though they are on the road they should be able to take care of Carolina, who needs a couple of more years before they get serious.
BALTIMORE 16 Indianapolis
The Ravens are also fighting for home field advantage in the AFC, and they look really good right now. So do the Colts. Sort of. Not really. The points are high but I see no problems beating a Colts team clearly playing for the number one pick.
New York Jets 9 Kansas City
The Jets have quietly been better, but nobody is really talking about them. I guess it's understandable. I still believe the New Yorkers make the post season and make some noise. The Chiefs haven't made any noise all season , and they won't make any this week either. I don't see any issues for the Jets here.
San Francisco 4 Arizona
I have a feeling the 49ers will roll through the regular season and then get bounced early in the playoffs. I don't know why I think this. Instinct may be.
Denver 3 1/2 Chicago
This is amazing to believe but I think the Broncos might actually win the AFC West. Incredible. Maybe Tim Tebow can't be stopped. He can. But for some reason teams are having trouble figuring out how. It's just a matter of time. Not this week though.
DETROIT 8 1/2 Minnesota
The Lions are now fighting for their playoff lives, but they will get in. Not the Vikings, who have really struggled this year. I see no problems here for Detroit, who will be a tough out in the post season.
SAN DIEGO 6 1/2 Buffalo
The Chargers will make their usual late-season run, but will fall short of the postseason. Say Goodbye to Norv Turner, though it is at least three years too late. The Bills have totally fallen apart after a great start. I'll take the Chargers here being at home.
New Orleans 4 Tennessee
The Saints are really looking good right now, but the Titans have totally gone under the radar in the AFC. They are right in the middle of the AFC race, and Chris Johnson is getting hot. He is not as hot as New Orleans is right now though, so I am going to take the Saints here. This is a really big game for both teams.
DALLAS 3 1/2 New York Giants
Not only can Tony Romo not be trusted, neither can Jason Garrett. He will probably try to ice Romo this week. It won't matter. I think the Giants are better right now, and Eli Manning is quietly having a great season. I like the Giants here.
SEATTLE 6 1/2 St. Louis
Another meaningless NFC West game. There have been way too many this year. And last year. And the year before.
Game of the Week
Cincinnati 3 Houston
There are a couple of big games this week, but this might be the biggest in the AFC. I was never sold on the Bengals and I'm still not convinced. I am convinced with Houston though. Nobody is talking about them in the AFC because of their injuries but they should be. They have the number one defense in the NFL statistically and a monster running game. In case anybody forgot, defense wins championships. I like the Texans here.
Stinker of the Week
JACKSONVILLE 1 Tampa Bay
The Bucs have to win sometime. I think.
Record For Week 13: 10-6 ( 11-5 without the spread )
Record Through Week 13: 90-94-8 ( 120-72 without the spread )
Game of Week Record: 8-4-1
Stinker of Week Record: 4-9
Patriots Daily Newswire
Jim Poore has been a long time contributor to Patriots Insider with his weekly picks column. Let him know what you think. Email him here:
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