The season is halfway over now and it has been a wild one. This week the Bills are actually favored over the Jets and the Colts are 6.5 point underdogs at home. There have been many other surprises this year but these two probably top the list for this week.
Last week was fairly straightforward with few upsets, but this week could have some good ones in store.
All lines are courtesy of FootballLocks.com.
Last Weeks Record: 10-3
Season Record: 63-36 (.636)
Sunday, Nov. 6 games: (Home team in ALL CAPS and winner in bold)
Atlanta -6.5 INDIANAPOLIS
- I still can’t figure out the Falcons. On paper they should be on top of the NFC, but instead they are just hovering one game over .500. Good news is they have already beaten the Eagles and Lions and the Colts are not nearly as good as those two teams. I know I have said it before, but I think this should finally be the week Atlanta airs it out and dominates against the CFL-caliber Colts.
NEW ORLEANS -8 Tampa Bay
- Tampa Bay is another team that I can’t quite get a handle on. So far this season they have had the slump I figured they would, I just didn’t think it would be quit this bad. The Saints on the other hand have had a pretty good season until last weeks stunner against the Rams. As long as they don’t have to play from behind, Drew Brees should be able to lead New Orleans to an easy victory.
HOUSTON -10.5 Cleveland
- Madden Curse? Yeah it seems to be in full force this season with Peyton Hillis. Already he has openly put himself and his new contract before the team, and now he has apparently had a sit down talk with his team to help get back on track. If not for his most recent injury, I’d like to take the 3-4 Browns in an upset over the Texans, but Hillis’ hamstring compounded with Arian Fosters health make it an easy pick for Houston.
BUFFALO -2.5 New York Jets
- Any guess as to who leads the AFC East right now? That’s right, the Buffalo Bills. The Jets are only one game behind the Bills and Patriots, but a loss here would really hurt come later this season. If Fred Jackson is free to run like he was last week against the Redskins then the Bills could jump out to an early lead and coast to a victory. But I think the Jets will finally play some smash-mouth football like their supposed to, letting them grind out a much needed victory.
KANSAS CITY -4 Miami
- The Chiefs are the only division leading team with a negative point differential. This weeks opponent won’t allow them to get out of the red, but it should allow them to make up some ground and pad their lead in the AFC West.
San Francisco -4 WASHINGTON
- With nine games left in the season, the 49ers already have a four-game lead in the pathetic NFC West. This week they travel across the country to face off against the lowly Redskins. I still don’t believe in San Francisco, but this is another game I can’t see them losing. As long as they don’t lose out to end the season, I think Jim Harbaugh easily wins Coach of the Year.
DALLAS -11 Seattle
On Monday night against the Eagles, the Cowboys looked pathetic on both sides of the ball, but a trip from the Seahawks should right the ship. DeMarco Murray looks like the real deal, and while he won’t come close to the record he already set, he should still break 100 yards and supplant Felix Jones as the starter.
OAKLAND -7 Denver
- This will be one of the worst quarterback match-ups this season. In their last game, Carson Palmer and Kyle Boller combined for six interceptions while Tim Tebow looked pitiful last week against the Lions. If Oakland can get Darren McFadden running this week then it will be a blowout, but without him it will be fairly close. Either way the Raiders should come out ahead and keep pace with the Chiefs.
TENNESSEE -3 Cincinnati
- Andy Dalton and A.J. Green have combined to put together the best Rookie-to-Rookie combo of All-Time so far. Amazingly that has translated to a 5-2 season for the Bengals, more wins than all of last year, and that combined with the Carson Palmer trade has made Mike Brown look like a genius. The Titans have also put together a nice year in the first post-Jeff Fisher season, and look to stay in the AFC South race with a win this week. Before the season I would have said I’d rather watch Vincent Chase in Medellin than this game, but now I am quite intrigued. Dalton and Green connect again to walk away with a big win on the road.
ARIZONA -3 St. Louis
The Cardinals-Rams matchup does give the Raiders-Broncos game good competition for worst quarterback match-up of the season. Backups A.J. Feely and John Skelton will face off to decide which team is slightly less bad than the other. The Rams did pull off a dominating victory over the Saints last week which gives them the edge in momentum, especially since Arizona choked away their chance to upset the Ravens, and that makes me think St. Louis can come out ahead in this one.
NEW ENGLAND -9 New York Giants
- We know how it went down the last time these two played, but since that Super Bowl the Patriots have maintained the course while the Giants have been on quite the roller coaster. If this game was in the Meadowlands I’d be tempted to pick New York again, but since it’s not, I think the Patriots will run away with this one.
Green Bay -5.5 SAN DIEGO
- I am tired of trying to believe in Phillip Rivers and the Chargers. Once upon a time I would have predicted a back-and-forth shootout, but now I see the Packers winning by at least 20.
PITTSBURGH -3 Baltimore
- Ever since the Ravens handled the Steelers 35-7 in Week 1, Pittsburgh has looked pretty darn good. Mike Wallace has continued to be the deep threat while Antonio Brown and Hines Ward have done their damage underneath. The Ravens haven’t looked bad, except against the AFC South, and should do their part to make it a competitive game. The Steelers will come out ahead because Ben Roethlisberger is that much better than Joe Flacco.
Monday Nov. 7
PHILADELPHIA -7.5 Chicago
- The Eagles hit their low earlier this season, but since then they have reeled off dominating victories over NFC East rivals Cowboys and Redskins. The Bears on the other hand have been fairly solid all season, especially with Matt Forte out to earn a contract. Both teams are in desperate need of a win, and both boast strong defenses and running games, so it will come down to quarterback play. I’ve never believed in Jay Cutler and am a Mike Vick convert so I’ll take Philly.