Much like a team that is out of contention, I’m just playing out the string in 2013. Another sub-.500 week leaves me with virtually no shot of getting back to the prognosticating Mendoza line.
But that doesn’t mean I’m throwing in the towel. Much like those guys on teams such as the Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders and Philadelphia Eagles, I’m forecasting for a job next season.
So with that, I boldly present another week’s worth of picks, with home teams in CAPS:
Broncos (minus 10) over RAIDERS: Denver has won seven straight. Oakland has lost five in a row. Who am I to buck trends?
BILLS (minus 3) over Rams: Two teams on the fringe of the playoff race battle in Buffalo. The Rams have shown they can give the 49ers fits. The Bills are not the 49ers.
BENGALS (minus 3) over Cowboys: Dallas can’t seem to beat good teams at home or on the road and the Bengals are a good team.
Chiefs (plus 6½) over BROWNS: Cleveland has won two in a row and three out of five but they don’t blow people out. This spread makes me take Kansas City without a great deal of conviction behind it.
COLTS (minus 5) over Titans: Indianapolis is this year’s “it” team, the team that doesn’t look that great but keeps finding a way to win. The trend continues against struggling Tennessee.
VIKINGS (plus 2½) over Bears: I like Minnesota in the battle of banged-up teams for two reasons, Adrian and Peterson.
STEELERS (no line) over Chargers: Pittsburgh is still off the board because of the uncertainty surrounding the status of Ben Roethlisberger. Regardless, I’m finally convinced—San Diego, you’re not good.
BUCCANEERS (minus 7½) over Eagles: The slow limp to the end of Andy Reid’s tenure in Philadelphia drags on.
REDSKINS (minus 1½) over Ravens: Baltimore’s offense struggled away from home and its defense ain’t what it used to be.
Falcons (minus 3½) over PANTHERS: Carolina defensive end Greg Hardy said earlier this week that the Panthers are better than Atlanta. Ladies and gentlemen, please feel free to examine Exhibit A for why the NFL drug tests its players.
Jets (minus 2½) over JAGUARS: While I’m not entirely confident in Gang Green’s ability to even score 2½ points, I’m even less confident in Jacksonville.
49ERS (minus 10) over Dolphins: An angry San Francisco bunch against a rookie quarterback at home—tell me this doesn’t have the potential to get very ugly very quickly.
Saints (plus 5) over GIANTS: Do I think Big Blue can win Sunday? Sure, I do. Do I think the Giants can win by more than a field goal? Sure, I don’t.
Cardinals (plus 10) over SEAHAWKS: It’s back to John Skelton this week for Arizona. That’s enough for me to at least think the Cards can cover in a divisional rivalry game.
Lions (plus 6½) over PACKERS: Detroit loses a lot these days, but they usually lose close.
PATRIOTS (minus 3) over Texans: There is a reason I have New England at the top of my own power rankings. The Patriots’ offense wins the battle against Houston’s defense.
Last week: 6-7-1