JC's Take: NFL Week 10 Picks
Hello all! Welcome back for my Week 10 picks! Picks will be up on Thursday's now because of the NFL games now starting on Thursday night.
Baltimore Ravens vs Atlanta Falcons
A potential Super Bowl preview? It may not be that far-fetched. Both teams are 6-2 and at the top of their conferences. Both teams also have good 3rd year QBs in Matt Ryan and Joe Flacco. Both teams also have great RBs in Michael Turner and Ray Rice. Catch a theme here? This should be a good football game. The Falcons had a clutch goal line stand on Sunday to hold on for the win against Tampa Bay. The Ravens defense shut down the Dolphins after getting lit up by Buffalo. I think home field will be key here. Joe Flacco isn't as great a passer on the road as he is at home. I think Flacco gets rattled a bit here on the road and the Falcons take advantage. It'll still be close, but the Falcons pull it out in the end.
Atlanta 27 Baltimore 21
Detroit Lions vs Buffalo Bills
A match-up between what many people consider to be two of the worst run franchises in the last decade. The Lions appear to have the pieces in place for the future, but their crowning jewel can't stay healthy. QB Matthew Stafford is injured again, and is more than likely out for the rest of the season. Stafford has potential but needs to stay on the field. The Lions are a different and better team with him. The Bills lost another close one against Chicago. I think the Bills would have one had the game been in Orchard Park, not the "home" crowd in Toronto. One teams streak is due to end here. Either the Lions road losing streak or the Bills 0-8 start. The Bills are due, and they'll get their first win here.
Buffalo 28 Detroit 23
Minnesota Vikings vs Chicago Bears
So is it a coincedence that an article ran in the Chicago Sun Times this week that said six un-named Vikings players "hate" coach Brad Childress? I mean we already knew the players didn't like him, but what timing the people in Chicago have? The Vikings surprisngly came back against the Cardinals last week that more than likely saved the Vikings season and Brad Childress's job. The Bears looked ok against an 0-8 Bills team. They couldn't get their run game going against the worst run defense in the league. The Vikings need this one to stay in the NFC Playoff picture. I'm going with the Bears here, simply because of the rift between the players and Childress. Bears win, Chilly gets fired on Monday.
Chicago 31 Minnesota 20
New York Jets vs Cleveland Browns
Can the Browns due it 3 weeks in the row? It's not out of the realm of possibility. They shut down Drew Brees and Tom Brady two weeks in a row, and Mark Sanchez is not in the league of those two QBs. The Jets should have lost last week against Detroit, but the Lions handed them the game late. The Jets offense has struggled the last couple of weeks, and Mark Sanchez doesn't look as good as he did early in the season. It'll be interesting to see what Browns defensive coordinator Rob Ryan does to shut down his brother Rex's team. I know many people think the Browns can't do it three weeks in a row, but I think they will. I said I didn't think the Jets would make the playoffs, and their offense is the reason why. Give me the Browns in a tight one.
Cleveland 20 NY Jets 17
Cincinnati Bengals vs Indianapolis Colts
The Colts are struggling with injuries, so it's good that they're getting a down team in the Bengals going to town. The Bengals almost came close to coming back against the Steelers on Monday night, but couldn't convert late. The Colts are beaten up offensively and now will be without Austin Collie after taking a scary hit against Philadelphia last week. But Peyton Manning still had his team in it late, so there's no reason to believe he can't keep his team on the right track. Carson Palmer should expect a lot of Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis in his face this week. I like the Colts at home here, and I wouldn't be surprised to see a Terrell Owens or even a Chad Ochocinco explosion after the game.
Indianapolis 35 Cincinnati 21
Tennessee Titans vs Miami Dolphins
The debut of Randy Moss as a Titan. Don't expect him to make a big impact in his debut. He's still learning the playbook even after the bye week. The Dolphins are turning to Chad Pennington at QB, and that's never a good sign. Pennington's best days are behind him, and he doesn't have the arm strength anymore to get the ball downfield to Brandon Marshall. The Titans should try to get Chris Johnson more involved this week with no Kenny Britt and a limited Randy Moss. Expect the Titans to put pressure on Chad Pennington, and stack the box making Pennington have to beat him. I like the Titans here to continue to keep pace with the Colts in the AFC South.
Tennessee 23 Miami 16
Carolina Panthers vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Panthers are a bad football team. They'll go back to Jimmy Claussen at QB this week, but still most likely be without RB DeAngelo Williams. They can't score points and are now having trouble stopping teams. Tampa Bay came close to upsetting Atlanta last week, but couldn't convert late on the goal line. The Bucs are 5-3, and need to continue beating the teams below them to keep up in the NFC Playoff picture. They'll do it here against a down and out Panthers team.
Tampa Bay 28 Carolina 13
Houston Texans vs Jacksonville Jaguars
This one will probably be a high scoring game. After a nice comeback win against the Chiefs, the Texans have lost two in a row. They're having problems stopping people on defense. They were absolutely gashed by Phillip Rivers and a bunch of third stringers last week, and didn't fair to well against Peyton Manning the week before. The Jaguars are coming off a bye week and are looking to keep up in the AFC South. The loser of this game falls to below .500 and can pretty much be considered out of the AFC playoff picture. I think this one is a toss up, but I'm going with the Texans here. The Texans have more weapons offensively.
Houston 41 Jacksonville 33
Kansas City Chiefs vs Denver Broncos
The Chiefs gave up a 10 point lead against Oakland last week and ended up losing in overtime. The Chiefs now only have a 1/2 game lead over the Raiders, and also have to worry about a now surging Chargers team. They're stil having problems offensively and need to fix them if they want to keep their lead in the AFC West. With the Broncos, you don't really know what to think. They're not a good football team, but they're not a terribly bad team either. They usually play well in Denver, but they also got lit up by Oakland a few weeks ago. They've had two weeks to get things right, and I think they pull off the upset here against the Chiefs.
Denver 24 Kansas City 20
Dallas Cowboys vs New York Giants
Two teams going in completely opposite directions. The Cowboys fired Wade Phillips this week and handed the reigns to Jason Garrett. He has 8 games to proove he can be a good coach, and possibly stick around as the coach next year. The Giants are 6-2 and look like the best team in the NFC. I expect another route here. The Cowboys have pretty much given up on the season, as evident by the last couple games. Expect another boring game.
NY Giants 38 Dallas 14
Seattle Seahawks vs Arizona Cardinals
This is actually a big game in the NFC West. The Cardinlas need this game to get to 4-5 and keep up in the NFC West. If they fall to 3-6 it might be too much even to comeback from in the NFC West. The Cardinals should have won last week but blew a lead late against Minnesota. The Seahawks got torn apart by the Giants last week, but they may get Matt Hasselbeck back this week. But the Seahawks need to be more concerned about re-establishing their running game that has vanished the last couple of weeks. And the Cardinals are terrible against the run, so they should be able to get it going here. I like the Seahawks here, specifically because of the Cardinals problems at QB.
Seattle 27 Arizona 20
St. Louis Rams vs San Francisco 49ers
Both teams will be rested coming off a bye week. The 49ers won in London thanks to putting in Troy Smith at QB. Expect Smith to be even more dangerous this week now that he's had two weeks to prepare. The Rams are a young team learning to win quickly, but are having problems winning on the road. That's why I'm picking against them here. Surprisngly, with a win here, the 49ers are actually back in it in the NFC West race.
San Francisco 30 St. Louis 27
New England Patriots vs Pittsburgh Steelers
Huge game in the AFC. The winner can pretty much stake claim to being the best team in the AFC. The Steelers held on late to take down the Bengals Monday, while the Patriots were surprisngly defeated by the Browns in Cleveland. The Patritos have yet to find a good offensive rhythm since the departure of Randy Moss. They need to fix that quickly. The Steelers have been playing well since the return of Big Ben, and the defense continues to wreak havoc and stay atop the league as one of the best units around. Expect Tom Brady to face a good amount of pressure in this game. But Big Ben can also expect the same, especially with the problems the Steelers have on the offensive line. I like the Steelers here in a close one. I think their defense forces Tom Brady into a couple of turnovers.
Pittsburgh 24 New England 17
Philadelphia Eagles vs Washington Redskins
McNabb vs his old team part two. Last time these two teams met, Michael Vick was knocked out early and the Redskins took advantage and won. Now, the Redskins are facing internal problems with Donovan McNabb and Mike Shanahan. Hopefully they fixed that rift during the bye week. The Eagles are coming off a big home win against the Colts, and Mike Vick looked to be back to his old self. The defense played much better than they had been. I just don't like the Redskins here. With the problems between McNabb and Shanahan, and the lack of running game recently, I think the Eagles will take advantage.
Philadelphia 30 Washington 20
This is all for today, and most likely this week. If I don't do something tomorrow, I'll be back Monday and Tuesday with my normal reviews.
Until next time,