So last week wasn’t the strongest start to this column. I went a solid 4/12, which isn’t ideal. But then again, batting .333 gets you into the Hall of Fame, so I’m going to take it as a win. Also, in my defense, this is the worst time of the year for football predictions. It’s #UpsetSzn in the NFL and college football, and everything is turned upside down.
Last week was wild. Only four games were decided by single digits, and eight teams score 40+ points. Craziest of all, the Bills blew out the Jets in a game that no one saw coming, yet we all really should have seen coming.
We are heading into the tail end of #UpsetSzn, with the next few weeks having the potential for some last minute league-shaking underdog victories. After that, it becomes #TankingSzn, when the playoffs are mostly figured out, and the bottom teams in the league fight for the #1 overall pick. The Giants shot themselves in the foot in that race last week by beating the 49ers. New York was happy at the time about the win, but they’ll be regretting it when San Fransisco ends up with a higher pick than them. Lucky for them, they’ll have Eli forever.
(Home teams in bold; Wednesday lines)
Seattle (-3) over Green Bay
The Seahawks are a sneaky good team this year. Each of their five losses have been within one score, and all have come against good teams. They aren’t the Legion of Boom anymore, but they could get into the playoffs and knock off a division winner.
Dallas (+3.5) over Atlanta
This game is gross. Two teams that should have been great this year battling it out for who is less of a disappointment.
The Cowboys have been obnoxiously bad on the road this year, but they did manage to beat the Eagles in Philly last week and make it out alive, so that’s impressive. Plus Atlanta just got smacked around by the Bake Show. Their confidence is likely shattered in a million pieces.
Carolina (-4) over Detroit
Lesson #35 from the 2018 NFL season: Never trust the Panthers. The second you think they are going to come through, they decide to give up a 50 spot.
However, the Lions are functioning at a 2008 Detroit Lions pace right now. Their defense has been bad. Their offense has been worse. Matty P is struggling, so Super Cam it is.
Tennessee (+2) over Indianapolis
The Colts are good. I’ll stand by that statement. They’re like the Seahawks, with losses against good teams. Andrew Luck seems to have a functioning arm again, and their defense isn’t half bad.
However, the Titans defense was RIDICULOUS against the Pats last week. I can’t imagine them dropping off that significantly this week.
Tampa Bay (+1.5) over New York (G)
Yeah, I get it, the Bucs quarterback’s are basically playing darts blindfolded right now. But do you really expect me to believe Eli is going to play well and win two games in a row?
Houston (-3) over Washington
The Redskins are the most suspect 6-3 team in the league right now. I honestly can’t tell if they’re good or not. But I do know that the Texans have rattled off six straight wins against a solid group of teams. Assuming Washington’s crappy field doesn’t cause Deshaun Watson and JJ Watt to blow their knees out again (*knocks on wood*), then the Texans roll.
Pittsburgh (-5.5) over Jacksonville
I was wrong last week. The Jags aren’t back. But, luckily for them, neither is LeVeon Bell.
Cincinnati over Baltimore
AFC North divisional matchups are objectively some of the most entertaining football games to watch. They are usually smash mouth, and fights pop up all time. They are also insanely hard to predict. The Bengals aren’t as bad as they were against the Chiefs. They aren’t great, but then again neither is Baltimore. I think Lamar Jackson is better than the #elite Joe Flacco, but not in his first NFL start.
Arizona (-5.5) over Oakland
Denver (+7) over Los Angeles (C)
The Broncos have quietly had one of the hardest schedules in the league, yet still only have two double-digit losses. I just realized that the Chargers are on a six-game winning streak. I also realized that those wins have come against the 49ers, the Browns, the Titans, the Seahawks, and the Raiders (twice).
As I said, it’s still #UpsetSzn
New Orleans (-8) over Philadelphia
This line is huge, but the Saints are rolling. They just dropped a casual 51 on the Bengals in Cincy. Meanwhile, the Eagles just lost at home to the Cowboys. Enough said.
Minnesota (+2.5) over Chicago
I’m not jumping on the Bears bandwagon just yet. I still have faith that the Vikings are the best team in that division. Please Kirk.
Los Angeles (R) (-3.5) over Kansas City
1. This is a game that will actually make listening to the Monday Night Football crew bearable.
2. Thank the Sweet Lord that they moved this game back to LA instead of playing it in Mexico. Trust me when I say the pictures of the field don’t even begin to describe how horrible it is for the teams to travel and play there.
3. Sean McVay > Andy Reid
(Last week: 4-12)