The National Football League boasts often about its parity. I am attempting to pay homage to that with my picks in 2012.
Unfortunately, parity has turned into parody in my case.
Week 5 was another disaster and my season has crashed more completely than the economy at this point. On the other hand, some might say that being 15 games under .500 after just five weeks would be hard to pull off unless one were trying to be that bad.
If only it were so.
As part of what is becoming a continuing effort to turn it around, here are my picks for Week 6. As always, home teams are in CAPS.
Steelers (minus 6) over TITANS: Pittsburgh rediscovered its running attack with the return of Rashard Mendenhall. Tennessee’s defense can’t stop water from leaving a bottle with a cork.
BUCCANEERS (minus 4) over Chiefs: All those Kansas City fans who wanted Matt Cassel out of the game are about to learn why Brady Quinn isn’t the answer.
JETS (minus 3) over Colts: Indianapolis looks like a rising young team. Rising young teams often have trouble winning when they leave the comforts of home.
Bengals (pick ‘em) over BROWNS: Cincinnati got pass-happy and lost to the Dolphins at home. Then Bernard Scott went down with a knee injury. But Cleveland is still Cleveland.
Lions (plus 3½) over EAGLES: The underachieving Lions against the never-met-a-turnover-they-couldn’t commit Eagles. But the hook on that spread makes the difference because Philly seems pathologically unable to put teams away.
FALCONS (minus 9) over Raiders: Atlanta’s passing offense gets to revive itself against the Oakland defense.
DOLPHINS (minus 3) over Rams: Miami gets back to .500 with a win in a matchup of two underrated defenses and two young quarterbacks with potential.
Cowboys (plus 3½) over RAVENS: I actually see Dallas tripping up the Ravens in Baltimore. The Cowboys are traditionally good coming off the bye and desperation is a great motivator as well.
CARDINALS (minus 4½) over Bills: What a matchup: The resistible force (Arizona’s offense) against the moveable object (Buffalo’s defense). The Bills have allowed 382 points and 6,203,706 yards (figures approximate) in blowout losses to the Patriots and 49ers the past two weeks.
SEAHAWKS (plus 3½) over Patriots: I just have a hunch that the very good Seattle defense can at least slow down New England enough to keep it within a field goal.
49ERS (minus 6½) over Giants: Ahmad Bradshaw does not run for 200 yards against San Francisco. So it’s not that bold a prediction, but still …
Vikings (no line) over REDSKINS: A freebie! The injury status of Robert Griffin III scared off Vegas on this one. The surprising Vikings will scare off Washington.
TEXANS (minus 3½) over Packers: Green Bay is not a 15-1 team. After Sunday night, they will, however, be a 2-4 team.
CHARGERS (minus 1) over Broncos: Denver is getting better every week but San Diego bounces back from a brutal loss down on the Bayou.
Last week: 5-9