Brad's Picks was 8-6 last week. Here's the good, bad and ugly from that:
Baltimore 37, Bills 34. OT. Ravens gave up 505 yards and 4 TD's to the 30th offense in the league.
Atlanta 39, Bengals 32. Atlanta led 24-3 at the half.
Tampa Bay 18, Rams 17. Bucs needed a one yard TD pass from Josh Freeman with ten seconds left in the game to beat the dome team.
Kansas City 42, Jags 20. It was 14-13 Chiefs at the half. But the Chiefs put up 236 yards on 42 rushes on the game, and no one will win a game when the oppo does that.
Carolina 23, Forty Niners 20. A 37 yard FG with 39 seconds remaining gave Carolina their first win of the season.
Seattle 22, Cardinals 10. Five field goals, plus five turnovers by the Cardinals adds up to a Seahawks win.
Patriots 23, San Diego 20. Chargers were behind 20-3 after three quarters. A 50 yard FG attempt with 23 seconds left would have sent it to OT, but it hit the upright.
Giants 41, Dallas 35. Tony Romo went out early with a broken clavicle, and the Giants still struggled to get the win.
the rest after the jump:
Redskins 17, Chicago 14. Amazing that the score was this close even though Jay Cutler threw 4 INT's. But then, McNabb threw two of his own. Each had one of his INT's returned for a TD (McNabbs's was run back 54 yards, Cutler's was run back 92 yards).
Steelers 23, Miami 22. A very weird call on a fumble by Ben the R at the goal line helped the Steelers win by a point. Replay showed that Ben the R clearly fumbled before crossing the goal line. Ball bounced into the end zone, and it looked like a Fin fell on it, but there was a big pile. It was called a TD, so the Refs ignored who had recovered the ball. When replay showed it was a fumble, the ball was awarded to the Steelrs at the one. They had to settle for a FG but that was the difference.
Green Bay 28, Vikings 24. It looked like Favre had won the game with a last minute TD toss to Percy Harvin, but replay showed that Percy Harvin only had one foot inbounds. Vikings probably got robbed on two other bad calls that cost them 14 points.
Tennessee 37, Eagles 19. Kerry Collins, the INT machine early last year, threw two more in relief of Vince Young, but he also threw for 253 yards and three TD's.
Browns 30, New Orleans 17. Drew Brees was intercepted 4 times, and two of them were returned for TD's by David Bowens (30 yards and 64 yards). Never heard of Bowens? He was drafted by Denver in the 4th round out of Western Illinois in 1999, and has also been a member of the Packers, Bills, Redskins, Dolphins and Jets.
the really, really, really ugly:
Raiders 59, Denver 14. It was 24-0 before anyone could blink. Are the Broncos this bad?
AFC 2, NFC 1 last week. On the season it's AFC 17, NFC 12. Home teams won 8, Visitors won 6 (same as the week before). On the season it's H 59, V 45. Brad's Picks is 54-50 on the season.
Off with a bye last week were Undeepuls (4-2); Jets (5-1); Detroit (1-5); and Houston (4-2). Off this week are New York Giants ( 5-2) ; Philadelphia (4-3); Chicago (4-3); Atlanta (5-2); Baltimore (5-2); and Cleveland (2-5).
this week: the 11:00 MDT games:
Denver (2-5) at San Francisco (1-6) - This is actually in London (5 p.m. local time), but the Niners have the honor of being designated the home team. Niners lost QB Alex Smith for awhile with a shoulder injury last week in Carolina. David Carr replaced him and was 5/13/67 with an INT, so the Niners will start Troy Smith, who played collegiately at OSU and has been on the Ravens (since 07) until he was released last September. Smith has started a couple games and has a completion record of 53%. He's one of those athletic QB types that can thrive in college, but not often in the NFL. Still, the Broncos made Jason Campbell look like an all-pro last week, after he had a QB rating of 10.7 the week before.
Broncos run O is 32nd, their run D is 30th. Here comes Frank Gore and a running type of QB. But it's a passing league these days, so I'll go with Kyle Orton and the Broncos.
Washington (4-3) at Detroit (1-5) - Detroit is off a bye. Redskins lost at Detroit in 09 by a score of 19-14. The win stopped the Lions' 19 game losing streak. This embarrassed the Reds, and they want a little payback. Matt Stafford will be back at QB for the Lions - he's been out since the first game. Reds pass D is terrible, as is their D in general. Reds' RB Ryan Torain had a good game in Chicago last week and the Chicago defense is better than the Lions', so between Torain and McNabb the Reds ought to get some offense going. But watch out for Lions rookie DT Ndamukong Suh - he already has 4.5 sacks this year, and leads the league in sacks by a DT. He's on pace for 12 on the year. I think that Stafford and his great receiver Calvin Johnson will take this game over, assisted by rookie RB Jahvid Best. Take the Lions. Their 5 losses this year have been by a total of 32 points, and the teams that beat them were Chicago, Eagles, Minnesota, Packers, and New York Giants. They whupped the Rams pretty good - 44-6 two weeks ago.
Buffalo (0-6) at Kansas City (4-2) - Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick took over at QB in Week 3, and has a QB rating of 102, with 11 TD's and just 4 INT's. Seems clear that he's not the reason the Bills are winless with him at QB. Can he carry the day at Arrowhead? Probably not. Chiefs QB Matt Cassel has completed 70% of his passes the last two weeks, with 5 TD's and 0 INT's, and the Chiefs' run game is terrific. Sorry Bills. Gotta take the Chiefs at Arrowhead.
Carolina (1-5) at St. Louis 3-4) - Rams beat San Diego, Seattle, and Washington in St. Louis. Those are pretty good teams. Panthers eked out a win in Carolina last week against a poor Niners team looking forward to a quick flight to London. Take the Rams.
Miami (3-3) at Cincinnati (2-4) - Bengals are pretty weak against the run, and the Dolphins are a good running team. Carson Palmer got real hot in Atlanta in the second half, but not hot enough to pull out a win.
I dunno here. But Miami is 3-0 on the road this year so....
Jacksonville (3-4) at Dallas (1-5) - Dallas not only lost to the Giants last week, they lost QB Tony Romo for 6-8 weeks with a broken clavicle. Jon Kitna replaced him and went 16/33/197 with two TD's and no INT's. Kitna's been in the league for 13 years, but should be rested and in good shape. Someone said the Jags only play well against the Colts - one of their three wins this season is over the Colts, the others against the Bills and Broncos. I'm taking the Boys at home - Kitna will have a good game.
Green Bay (4-3) at New York Jets (5-1) - Jets are off a bye. Packers lost TE Jermichael Finley for the year a couple weeks ago, and he was Rodgers best receiver. Donald Driver is banged up, and the Packers haven't found a run game since Ryan Grant went out. Jets are 12th in total defense, Packers are 18th. Packers are 12th in total offense, Jets 17th. Jets CB Darrelle Revis is healthy after a couple weeks off. I'm taking the Jets because of the week off and the home field. I don't think Rodgers will be able to muster much of a pass game without a run game to help out.
the 2:05 MDT game:
Tennessee (5-2) at San Diego (2-5) - Titans are 3-0 lately, even with Vince Young not playing the last two. Kerry Collins was very good those two games, as the T's beat the Eagles and Jacksonville. They won at Dallas 34-27 three weeks ago. Meanwhile, the Chargers have gone 0-3 lately, losing to the Patriots and at Saint Louis and at Oakland. Kerry Collins is nursing a sore finger, but Vince Young is practicing and will likely start, after suffering a knee injury a couple weeks ago. Titans have RB Chris Johnson and emerging WR Kenny Britt. In spite of their poor record, the Chargers lead the league in total offense, total defense, and pass defense. They also lead the league with 25 sacks. So why are they 2-5? Turnovers, basically. and their five losses have been by a total of 28 points. These are two good teams, but I think the Chargers are better and will win this one at home if they take care of the ball.
the 2:15 MDT games:
Minnesota (2-4) at New England (5-1) - I read where Brett Favre has two fractures in his ankle, but I also read that that's just a glorified description of an ankle sprain. He didn't practice on Wednesday, but the question is whether he'll play even if he can. Favre has already thrown more INT's this year than in all of 09, and he has just the 30th best completion per centage of any NFL QB. Meanwhile, Randy Moss, now a Viking receiver, spent the last several years in New England as a receiver. If you think he's been protective of the Patriots game plans, I have a bridge to sell you.
Anyway, a couple of interesting records are sort of at stake here. One is Favre's record of 25 straight wins at home, set in 95-98. Tom Brady currently has 23 straight wins at home. Also on the line is Favre's all-time record of 315 straight starts. Even if it ends on Sunday, Peyton Manning is still about 100 behind him.
Well, that's all interesting, but who's going to win this game? I bet Favre plays and plays well, and I bet Randy Moss does also. So I'll take a flyer on the Vikings. Patriots D is improving but the Vikes can exploit it.
Seattle (4-2) at Oakland (3-4) - Seahawks are a notoriously bad road team, but this is just down the coast. Raiders top receiver Louis Murphy is out with a lung bruise. Seahawks are allowing just 3.3 yards per rush (3rd best in the league) but the Raiders Darren McFadden has been very good lately. I'll take the Seahawks here if only because the Raiders might still be in the clouds over their beatdown of the Broncos a week ago.
Tampa Bay (4-2) at Arizona (3-3) - Bucs are in second place in a tough division, but their 4 wins are over the Browns, Carolina, Cincinnati, and the Rams, by a total of 17 points. Their two losses (Steelers, Saints) were by 25 points each. Rookie RB LeGarrette Blount is pushing for carries with his 4.9 average (vs. Cadillac Williams' 2.5). Now if only Blount could learn the rest of the play book, which includes blocking sometimes. Bucs HC Raheem Morris recently proclaimed the Bucs "...the best team in the NFC." Hard to figure that one. It's also hard to figure out why they suddenly released veteran starting Guard Keydrick Vincent, especially after recently losing their starting RT and starting Center. But I suppose Morris has a reason for that.
Cards' rookie QB Max Hall has yet to lead a TD drive in his 25 possessions. In fact, Hall has been pretty bad. But so has the other QB, veteran Derek Anderson. Just look - Larry Fitzgerald only has 29 catches on the year. Hall suffered a concussion last week in Seattle, so it's not clear who will play. I'll take the Bucs here. They have a good QB, the Cards don't.
the SNF game:
Pittsburgh (5-1) at New Orleans (4-3) - Steelers were lucky to eke out a win at Miami last week, while the Saints got surprised by the Browns, with Drew Brees throwing 4 INT's. Maybe Brees was distracted by the birth of his son Bowen earlier in the week. Kind of weird that two of Brees INT's were by David Bowens, who returned them both for TD's. Something else affected the Saints last week though, as they could only muster 58 yards on the ground (on 18 carries). Sure, neither Reggie Bush nor Pierre Thomas played (neither will play this week either) but the week before, the Saints gained 212 yards on just 32 carries, 158 by Chris Ivory, 32 by Julius Jones. I look to the Saints righting the ship against a very good Steelers team - this is in New Orleans after all. Hey, this could be a prevue of the next Super Bowl.
the MNF game:
Houston (4-2) at Undee (4-2) - Division game. Someone in the NFL scheduling department hates these two teams. Both are off their by week, then play on a Monday? Anyway. These two teams met in Week One when Texans' undrafted RB Arian Foster ran for 231 yards on 33 carries, and Houston won 34-24.
Both teams have suffered big losses lately - Texans' All Pro LB DeMeco Ryan is on IR, as is Colts' All Pro TE Dallas Clark. Colts have placed three DB's on IR this year, and Safety Bob Sanders is still out with injuries. Colts will also be without WR Austin Collie, while the Texans get their LT Duane Brown back from a four game suspension. I know this game is at the Unplace, and Manning is real good on prime time, but I'd like to pick the Texans anyway, so I will.