November 14, 2008

Week 11 picks

by Dan Bilicki In: Football, Picks

Time is running down quickly for teams to solidify their chances to make the playoffs. What that means for us, the fans, is some fantastic efforts coming out of teams desperate to make the post-season as well as players on vacation-bound teams aiming for off-season free agency or contract incentives. Yes, that’s the sports world we live in today.

Look at last night’s game; two bitter rivals duking it out to the end and eventually going to overtime. If you don’t think that’s a great game, well you don’t know football.

As for this week’s picks, our lines as always are straight from the Vegas and the home teams are in CAPS.

ATLANTA (-6) over Denver
Well, I’ve been saying the Matt Ryan winning at home era would be ending for weeks now. Maybe I should do an about-face on that theory. On the other hand, Denver has had ample time to rest after playing two Thursdays ago. Then there’s the fact that Peyton Hillis and Tatum Bell are the Broncos running backs.

Oakland (+10.5) over MIAMI
Unless you’re actually looking for it, it can be hard to find injury news about the Raiders. Last week I didn’t even know that JaMarcus Russell was injured, I just figured they pulled him because he stunk. This week he’ll start and while he can’t be worse than the guys who replaced him last week, he’s still pretty bad.

NEW YORK GIANTS (-6.5) over Baltimore
Okay, I am taking the Ravens seriously as playoff contenders but playing against the Giants in New Jersey is not a very easily winnable game. The Ravens have been getting by with a severely injured secondary too, that will catch up to them very soon.

Houston (+8) over INDIANAPOLIS
The last time these two teams played, the Texans literally gave the game to the Colts. I very much doubt that Sage Rosenfels will fumble twice in the last few minutes of this game. There is also the Bob Sanders factor for the Colts, though. He is healthy but since this is his third game playing in a row, he’s due for an injury.

Tennessee (-3) over JACKSONVILLE
So Jacksonville goes into Detroit and beats a winless team handily and we’re supposed to respect them again? Yeah right. The Jaguars lost to the Bengals of all teams two weeks ago. I’m sure they do have the potential to derail the Titans perfect season, but I wouldn’t bet on it. And hey, haven’t the Titans done a remarkable job of avoiding injuries? That’s got to change soon.

GREEN BAY (-3.5) over Chicago
When it comes to pivotal division games, it’s always safer to back the home team. Also, it’s always safer to back the team led by a QB who is not named Kyle Orton or Rex Grossman. And hey, I know Orton stepped it up earlier this season, but don’t you think there’d be a significant drop off since he’s not 100%?

Philadelphia (-9) over CINCINNATI
I don’t care how much Chad Ocho Cincho has grown up over a few weeks. Changing his outlook? Is he serious? The Bengals won’t be able to hang with the Eagles who always beat up on bad teams.

KANSAS CITY (+5.5) over New Orleans
I am very surprised at how well Tyler Thigpen is doing. This Chiefs team is consistently staying in games and even had a chance to beat the Chargers last week if not for horrific play calling on the convert attempt. With Drew Brees picking apart the Chiefs’ D, this one has shootout potential all over it.
 
CAROLINA (-14) over Detroit
The Panthers are a superb home team and might even be the second best team in the NFC overall. The Lions could cover this spread if they were in Detroit, but never in Raleigh. Look for a huge days for Jake Delhomme and Steve Smith in a bounce back.

TAMPA BAY (-3.5) over Minnesota
Adrian Peterson is going nowhere in this one. Does anyone find it concerning that he can throw out those huge 180 yard games and then put up stinkers were he’ll gain like 40 on 22 carries? It’s not as bad as Reggie Bush but I’d like some more consistency out of him. Of course that’s juts nit-picking a good player though. Anyway, I see this as an AP40 week and remember that the Bucs have one of the best run defences in the league.

St. Louis (+6) over SAN FRANCISCO
I’m not even sure if 49ers or Rams fans will watch this game. This one should be full of straight up bad football. I figure it’s won by a late field goal since both teams are pretty equal in their badness. Take the points.

Arizona (-3) over SEATTLE
Well Seattle, Matt Hasselbeck’s back so at least there’s one smidgen of good news this sporting year. Yes, that’s right, I’m not counting the fact that you landed an expansion MLS franchise. With Kurt Warner leading the Greatest Show on Turf: The Sequel and getting touted as an MVP candidate, it’s hard to pick against him with a line of three.

San Diego (+5.5) over PITTSBURGH
Big Ben looked bad last week. If he’s hurt, he should step up and say so instead of playing through the pain in his shoulder and hurting his team. I say he’s the type who mans up, plays hurt and eventually throws a pick that leads to a Chargers win.

Dallas (-1.5) at WASHINGTON
I was seriously surprised seeing the Cowboys favoured in this one. The Redskins are a good team, playing at home and always bring it hard against Dallas. Sure, Tony Romo is coming back but who knows how effective he’ll be with a splint on his not-100% broken pinkie? And while the Skins will most likely be without Clinton Portis, they do have a serviceable backup who happened to score 20+ TDs just two seasons ago.

This week: 0-1
Last week: 9-4
This season: 65-53-2

1 Comment

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