Saturday, October 14, 2006

NFL Picks, Week 6

Hey, like I said -- it's gonna be a Twins-Padres World Series. What the hell was I on? The Tigers are looking very much like a team that's on an unstoppable roll in the postseason - the kind of groove where if they beat your team and go on to win the title, it makes you feel a little bit better because you know destiny - with the old English 'D' - is riding shotgun with this squad. If the Tigers sweep today, which seems likely, they're going to have a nice, looong rest waiting to see who they'll face in the Fall Classic.

Anyway, onto the Week 6 NFL prognostications. I had a pretty good week last week, going 8-4-2, and bringing the season mark to 34-23-3.

Cincinnati (-5.5) @ Tampa Bay: A lot of media types are picking an upset here but I just don't see it happening. Is Bruce Gradkowski going to be Tampa Bay's Tom Brady and unseat the incumbent due to injury (see Bledsoe, Drew; Lewis, Mo; lacerated something or other)? Who knows? The Bengals are coming off a bye week, and the last taste in their mouths was the 38-13 shellacking the Patriots laid on them. I say the Bengals come out roaring.

Tennessee (+10.5) @ Washington: I know the Titans suck and the Redskins need this one. But I'm thinking Tennesee builds on their strong effort against the Colts last week and Vince Young has another week under his belt working as the No. 1 guy. I'm picking the Titans to at least cover.

Houston @ Dallas (-13): The Battle of Texas goes to the Cowboys. They are clearly the better team, and probably still smarting after a tough loss to Philly last week. Houston's run defense is porous, so Julius Jones may do some open-field galloping. Will we see Tony Romo in this one? Either way, the 'Boys cover.

Buffalo @ Detroit (+1): I'm not sure why, but I'm liking the home 'dog in this one. Buffalo turned in an absolute dud last weekend against the Bears, and J.P. Losman, last I knew, is still their starting QB. Detroit has at least shown signs of being competitive. A snoozer of a game, but the Lions will pull off the mild upset. Motown is on a roll.

Seattle (-3) @ St. Louis: The Rams have been a pleasant surprise for sure, but the Seahawks have a better, deeper roster and a proven head coach. They're also coming off that drubbing in Chicago. Should be a pretty entertaining game - take the over if you're so inclined - but the nod goes to Seattle.

NY Giants (+3) @ Atlanta: Another entertaining game on paper. After a week of infighting, the Jints came out last week and did what they had to do against a divisional rival. They may have some momentum going for them, and I'm just not sold on the Falcons or Mike Vick. Over-rated... over-rated. I'm going with the Giants.

Philly (-3) @ New Orleans: The Saints have been another surprise story, and they've obviously upgraded at their skill positions with Brees and Bush. Some may smell trap game for the Eagles after their emotional victory in the T.O. Bowl last week, but I think the Eagles will come to play. Saints will keep it close but Philly will pull away in the end.

Carolina (+3) @ Baltimore: Kickers be ready. Should be lots of three-point attempts in this no-holds-barred battle of top defenses. The Ravens are operating on a short week after losing a bruising game to Denver on Monday night, a game in which Steve McNair looked like he was ready to collect his pension. Carolina's the pick here, as their defense continues to be stout and their offense may be coming around now that Steve Smith has been able to stay healthy.

Miami (+2.5) @ NY Jets: I know the Dolphins stink, but I thought they looked pretty decent last week against the Pats with Joey Harrington at the controls. Wes Welker is the new Wayne Chrebet, only better. The Jets meanwhile, may not recover from the pasting they took last week at the hands of the Jaguars. Take the underdog Dolphins.

San Diego (-10) @ San Francisco: San Diego looks strong on both sides of the ball, and should feast on the young 'Niners. Marty Ball rules supreme as the Chargers take it.

Kansas City (-7) @ Pittsburgh: What's up with the Steelers? They're looking like anything but the brash, cocky squad that beat Seattle in the big game last February. Lots of reasons, but maybe they're just not that good. I'm going with the Chiefs to cover and possibly win.

Oakland (-16) @ Denver: Call me crazy, but Denver's not putting up tons of points and they may be looking past the woeful Raiders. That's what I'm thinking anyway. Oakland's the pick.

Chicago (-10.5) @ Arizona: The Bears' roll continues, and somewhere, Bob Griese, Nick Buoniconti and others are looking a little more closely at their easy schedule to see if they've got a shot to go undefeated. Who the heck wouldn't take the Bears?

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