Sunday, November 21, 2010

5 for Sunday

Week #11 and all we know about the NFL is that 75% of the teams flat-out stink. Home teams in CAPS.

TENNESSEE (-7) over Washington
In all honesty, how could anyone put money on the Redskins right now? The team is a train wreck, still hasn't won a game on their own this year, is coming off a game in which they gave up 59 points at home, and now has to deal with an offense that boasts Chris Johnson and Randy Moss. Maybe Albert Haynesworth won't take a mid-play nap in his Nashville homecoming like he did against the Eagles, but I still don't think it will matter. Titans by double digits.

Baltimore (-10) over CAROLINA
This one is a layup. Brian St. Pierre starts at quarterback for the Panthers, who are in utter disrepair and are down to their 4th running back as well. The Ravens are coming off 10 days of rest and should throw the kitchen sink at Carolina's offense. On a side note, as easy a target as the Panthers are to bet against these days, you have to feel for Steve Smith as he gets ball after ball thrown at his feet or airmailed over his head.

Oakland (+7.5) over PITTSBURGH
I'm continuing to ride the Raiders, and with good reason. They get after the quarterback, and Pittsburgh's offensive line looked like a set of turnstiles last week against New England. If the Raiders have watched their share of film, they should be able to use the short passing game against the Steelers' over-aggressive safeties and linebackers to create mismatches with their playmakers like Darren McFadden, Michael Bush, and the out-of-nowhere Jacoby Ford. If tight end Zach Miller suits up, the Steelers will have even more to deal with. You have to like the Raiders' chances of at least keeping this a one-score game and maybe even winning outright.

Buffalo (+5.5) over CINCINNATI
The Bills stink but are getting better. The Bengals stink but are possibly getting worse. Losers of six in a row, the Bungles have won only one game this year by more than 5 points, and that was against the Panthers. At the very least, you have to respect Buffalo's ability to keep games close (last four games decided by a total of 11 points), which is much easier said than done when your team is going nowhere. The Bengals play just well enough to lose every week - why should anyone expect them to win this game by a touchdown?

SAN DIEGO (-9.5) over Denver (Monday Night)
Now that Daylight Savings Time has ended, you are now free to lay the lumber with the Chargers. Despite lacking a healthy and/or effective running back all season and possibly being without Antonio Gates for a second straight game, Philip Rivers continues to make stars out of whoever is on the receiving end of his throws. Kyle Orton and co. aren't likely to light things up in San Diego the way they did against Kansas City, a defense who had been playing above its head for most of the season.

Last Week: 3-2-0
Season: 25-23-2

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