Thursday, November 18, 2010

Week 10 results, Week 11 Predictions

I had a terrible week last week. The worst ever at 6-7. If had posted early, it would have been 7-7, but that is nothing special.

I was going to give you a prediction on the Bears v Dolphins, but it is far too late in the day for that. We're getting to the end of the 3rd quarter, so it's way too late for a prediction. No bets are accepted after kick-off.

The Ravens v Panthers is a massacre already. The Vikings are a sinking dragon ship. I'll take the Packers. The Texans are in a free-fall. I'll take the Jets. The Bills v Bengals is one of those maddening choices where two turds are bumping into each other at the bottom of the toilet bowl. I'll take the Bengals.

The Browns v Jaguars actually constitutes an intriguing matchup. The Jags are one of the most unpredictable and inconsistent teams around. They are not very talented, but they have good key players in Jones-Drew and Garrard. On any given Sunday, they are an upset threat. The problem is that they are mostly moribund; they are stagnant in a mediocre position. They don't get better, they don't get worse. The Browns, on the other hand, are an exciting young team on the rise. I like 'em. I believe they have a bright future ahead of them. Next year, they should contend. I'm taking the Browns.

The Redskins v Titans is another matchup of wanna-be contenders who aren't. The Skins' defense is categorically broken. It was a solid defense last season. In his most foolish decision ever, Mike Shanahan fires his defensive coordinator, and changes the defense to a 3-4, just because he likes it better. Stupid, very stupid. Their 59-point flame out at the hands of the Eagles was a direct consequence of this stupid decision. Worse, I think the Eagles handed a very nice Blueprint for victory to the Titans. Certainly, Vince Young can run and throw deep. Certainly, Randy Moss has a lot of speed and can stretch the field. I expect the Titans to pile-on the misery for Washington. It may not be 59-28, but it should be 38-10.

Cowboys and Lions should prove interesting. The Cowboys seem resurgent, but they have no Romo. The Lions are young, good, and hungry, but they have no Stafford. Neither team has its starting QB. Both are in heaps of trouble. Ultimately, I expect the Cowboys to win this, but it should prove interesting.

Steelers v Raiders is formerly classic match, that died completely, and is now becoming somewhat interesting again. This is a strange one for several reasons. The Raiders & Steelers met last year and should not play each other for a minimum of 2 years. Further they met in Pittsburgh last year, meaning the game should be in Oakland this year. Once again, somebody at NFL HQ is smoking Sherms and experiencing intense brain damage. This happened before in the Rams v Redskins series 2008 & 2009. The game itself is hard to handicap because the Steelers are struggling now that Ben Roethlisberger is back at the helm, and the Raiders are actually leading the AFC West right now. I think the Steelers are not what they are cracked up to be, but you don't want to play them in Pittsburgh after a humiliating loss the Patriots

One of the several reasons the Rams' loss to the 49ers stunk is that it pretty well blew our chances finish at .500. We are now below .500 and facing our toughest opponent in the Falcons. Winning our first road game last week would have compensated for our {highly probable} loss to the Falcons this. It is now very likely that we will go 2 games below .500 at 4-6. The Rams play best at home. It's plausible to suggest that this just might be a trap game for the Falcons. With that said, I believe the Rams' chances of winning are remote. At this stage it is very reasonable to suggest that the Falcons will be the 2010-2011 NFC Champs. We gave the future champs pure-hell in 2009, but we still lost that game. Even if this is a trap for the Falcons, and even if we given them pure hell for four quarters, it is still likely that they will pull it out in the end. Further, our Rams are having problems with OL injuries and pass protection again. I hope I turn out wrong, but I cannot rationally pick the Rams, in this game, at this point.

Of course, the big game 'everybody is looking forward too' is the Patriots and Colts. They seem to play each other every single season, regardless of the fact that this is a flagrant violation of division scheduling rules. You don't think this might be a money thing, do you? I don't think this year's edition of the rivalry is that important. I wouldn't put money on either team's chances of visiting the Super Bowl in Feb 2011. The Colts are an indoor turf team. They are not the same team in cold weather and on grass. The Patriots' home field is an advantage in this case. For this reason, I make the Patriots a one point favorite... but just barely.

Finally, we have the Giants and Eagles. I like the Giants a lot. I would expect them to rebound hard from the loss last week. I still like their chances of reaching the Super Bowl. However, they are going to have problems out-scoring the Eagles in this game. In my estimation, this is the closest game on the entire board; even tighter than the Colts and Patriots. This game can go either way. I want to say pick'em, but I will favor the Eagles due to the Giants' OL injury problems.