There’s at one point every year when making football picks becomes more and more difficult.
Teams are injured or tired. Other teams figure out their opponent’s weaknesses. The weather starts becoming more of a factor. The great teams start getting unbelievably high spreads.
It makes for lower scoring and much closer games.
Overall, it makes it that much harder to predict.
That point of the season came last week. So the rest of the season will be interesting.
On to the picks.
Miami Panthers at Carolina Panthers, Panthers favoured by 2 1/2
See here for my pick as it happened on Thursday night.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Kansas City Chiefs, Steelers favoured by 9 1/2
This is the time of the season when the Steelers start to turn it on. They spend the first few weeks getting a feel for everything, getting rid of the dead weight (Willie Parker) and making sure every knows their roles. It’s all a build-up to the playoffs, instead of peaking too early. They’ll be too much of a match for the Chiefs. Steelers to win.
Cleveland Browns at Detroit Lions, Lions favoured by 3 1/2
The Detroit Lions have lost 25 of its last 26 games. Yet, they’re favoured in this game. That says a lot about the Cleveland Browns. Can you imagine any team in any other sport challenging an athlete in another sport to come try out for the team? That is happening now as the Browns are trying to get Lebron James to play, and being completely serious about it. That is a sign of a bad team. Lions to win.
New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Saints favoured by 11 1/2
Despite being undefeated, the Saints are 6-3 against the spread, but haven’t actually covered in the past three. So I was going to pick against them this week, until I saw they were playing the Bucs, who is actually 1-4 against the spread at home. Saints to win.
Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants, Giants favoured by 6 1/2
The Giants haven’t won in quite a while, so I don’t understand how they get the benefit of such a big spread this week. I like the Giants, and would like to see them win, but I don’t think they can cover this week. Atlanta to cover.
Buffalo Bills at Jacksonville Jaguars, Jaguars favoured by 8 1/2
Jacksonville is 0-3 when favoured. Not a good sign. I like the Bills chances this week. Bills to cover.
Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys, Cowboys favoured by 10 1/2
The Redskins, surprisingly, haven’t been playing that bad the past few weeks. However, the Cowboys will run roughshod over them this week. Cowboys to win.
Seattle Seahawks at Minnesota Vikings, Vikings favoured by 10 1/2
The Seahawks are a league worst 0-5 when they’re the underdog against the spread. And that streak doesn’t look to change this week. The Vikings are one of the top five teams in the league, and will be starting to kick it up a notch as they gear up for the playoffs. Vikings to win.
San Francisco 49ers at Green Bay Packers, Green Bay favoured by 6 1/2
Green Bay hasn’t looked good this year. Their best games have been losses to the Vikings. They have looked horrible in almost every other game. San Fran, on the other hand, has looked good this year, and is 6-3 against the spread. I like those odds. 49ers to cover.
Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens, Ravens favoured by 1/2
You have to go with the undefeated team here, even though they’re playing a tough Ravens team on the road. Baltimore actually has a better spread record than the Colts, but I believe that will change this week. Colts to win.
Arizona Cardinals at St. Louis Rams, Cardinals favoured by 8 1/2
The Cardinals can run up the score with the best of them. This will be one of those weeks. Cardinals to win.
New York Jets at the New England Patriots, Patriots favoured by 10 1/2
The Jets have already won against the Patriots this year. The Pats haven’t looked like the record-setting awesome team they’ve been in the past few years. I think the Pats will want to make a statement after letting the Colts come back and win last week, but they won’t win big. Jets to cover.
San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos, Chargers favoured by 2 1/2
After starting the season 6-0, the Broncos have come back to reality by losing their last three games. The Chargers have been peaking the past few weeks. It all adds up to a Chargers win.
Cincinnati Bengals at Oakland Raiders, Bengals favoured by 9 1/2
Here’s an interesting stat that probably won’t change the way you pick this game: The Bengals are 5-0 against the spread when they’re the underdog, but only 1-3 when favoured. It makes me worried that the Raiders will keep this one close, but I still don’t trust them. Bengals to win.
Philadelphia Eagles at Chicago Bears, Eagles favoured by 2 1/2
The Bears are a sad 1-4 when underdogs. That record won’t get better this week. Eagles to win.
Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans, Texans favoured by 4 1/2
Houston is 6-3 when dealing with the spread so far this year, good for first overall (tied with a few other teams). The Titans have looked better as of late, but I like Houston to take this one. Texans to win.