Green Bay Packers (-6.5) @ Cleveland Browns: Lots of stuff has me thinking this is a great bet. There’s the Flu that’s going around Cleveland like flies swarm cow poo, there’s the fact that Cleveland’s quarterback has a 44% completion rate on the season, or that Green Bay has played much better defensively over the past three games – many, many things say Packers. But 81% of the public likes this bet, and that’s a red flag if I’ve ever seen one. One thing Cleveland does better than Green Bay is control the ball, their time of possession is solid despite the inability to complete passes and being prone to turnovers. Big spreads for road favorites can often backfire with a pass happy team struggling to complete passes. But I see the Packers running the ball more this Sunday, holding the ball longer, and covering by at least a touchdown in Cleveland. Vegas or the people? Who wins this Sunday? Damn the man!
Oklahoma Sooners (+3.5) @ Texas Longhorns: Now I seriously doubt the 3.5 will matter much when all is said and done, but the fact that I can win even if the Sooners lose by a field goal makes me feel just that much better about my selection. I like the Sooners here for a couple reasons. Coming into the season, I thought Oklahoma was the better team. Now they have already lost twice, and haven’t looked brilliant so far this season, but at least they’re battle tested. They’ve had a tough start to the year, but that’s because of injuries and some very good opponents. BYU is a very good veteran team, Miami has loads of talent and has played very well in some big games, and even Tulsa can play with most anyone in the country. That’s 3 games against better opponents than Texas has seen all season, and to be honest, I haven’t been that impressed with the Longhorns when I’ve seen them play. Colt hasn’t been nearly as sharp as he was last season, and the running game has some questions with injuries coming into this game. I also like that the winner of this game has been the road team 3 straight seasons. Now Texas has covered 4 straight, and ousted Oklahoma in 3 of the last 4, but this one has a little different feel. National Title hopes are basically out of the question for Oklahoma, while a win for the Longhorns would give them a leg up in the race for the Championship. Oklahoma has nothing to lose, and can only relish in the chance to upset the Texans and do their part in destroying their rival’s chance at glory. The underdog Sooners out to ruin it all, I kind of like them in that role. This should be a great one, but I’ll take the road dog and the points!
A nice 4-2-1 week in week 6 has me on the up and up, but I’ll need two solid winners in a row if I want to even think about smelling a winning streak. I’ve got the early lines in and this is how I think I’m going to do it.
Atlanta Falcons (+9) @ New Orleans Saints:
(Line: Thursday, 3:30am EST: Bookmaker)
I don’t care who is quarterbacking the Falcons, they’ve had a crappy passing attack in every single game except one all season long. The Leftwich change doesn’t do much. Joey wasn’t as bad as people made him out to be, his receiving corps left him out to dry. Anyway, maybe Leftwich will give the Falcons a chance to get deep, who knows. What I do know is that the Falcons defense has played good football for most of the season, and they’ll show up to play the Saints, they always do. What has New Orleans done to deserve 9? And the public still likes the Saints? I don’t buy it. In fact, I’m selling it. Take the Falcons, they have great value at +9.
Baltimore Ravens (-3) @ Buffalo Bills:
(Line: Monday, 1:30pm EST: Bookmaker)
Trent Edwards may eventually be the Jim Kelly golden boy the Bills organization has been dream of since Jim hung it up, but I don’t like rookie quarterback against the Ravens. That is what you’d call a bad match-up. The public loves this bet, everyone and their mother is taking the Ravens, but I don’t see it any other way. You either take the Ravens, or you don’t take it at all. I wouldn’t advise a huge play on Baltimore, if only because the books really seem to like the Bills in this one, but hey, I personally think the books are wrong.
New England Patriots (-16.5) @ Miami Dolphins:
(Line: Monday, 1:30pm EST: Bookmaker)
I know Cleo Lemon looked good last week against Cleveland, but give your head a shake if you think the youngster will do up the Patriots secondary. I know the Patriots have yet another college spread to cover, but compared to New England, yeah, the Dolphins are a college team. For those Dolphin backers out there, how can you bet on a team that traded their top receiving threat for a 2nd round pick next season, and waived the only safety that was making any plays in their secondary. Look at that starting secondary and tell me they are going to slow down Tom Brady… While I’m waiting, I’ll be laying some cash down on the Patriots.
Tennessee Titans @ Houston Texans (+1.5):
(Line: Thursday, 3:30am EST: Bookmaker)
Look at this one on Sunday Morning. If the Titans are starting Vince Young, take the Titans, he’s just not a good guy to wager against. However, I’ll just bite the bullet and take the Texans, because even with Vince, the Titans aren’t a sure thing. But with Kerry Collins throwing balls in Tennessee, I really like the Texans chances to move ahead of the Titans here. Matt Schaub is coming off a couple bad games, and I think he’ll turn it around this week at home.
N.Y. Jets (+7) @ Cincinnati Bengals:
(Line: Thursday, 3:30am EST: 5Dimes)
I don’t buy the Bengals as a 7 point favorite. I think Cinci’s defense is bad enough to allow Chad Pennington to have a big day, which does not bode well for the Bengals. I also think Thomas Jones could rush for about 150 yards in Cinci this week. It will be a high scoring affair, I can almost guarantee you that. The Bengals don’t have much of a rushing attack, and I think that will be the dagger in their covering hearts. Look at it this way; the only team the Bengals have beat is an overrated Ravens team, and they only won because the Ravens turned the ball over 6 times. I can’t wait to watch this game on Sunday.
Chicago Bears @ Philadelphia Eagles (-4.5):
(Line: Monday, 1:30pm EST: Bookmaker -4.5)
I don’t like this game at all. If I didn’t take every game, I would leave this one alone. I want to take the Bears, because the Eagles have been, well, frankly crappy. I want to take the Eagles because the Bears have been brutal all season long, minus one half against the Packers. Anyway, I’m taking the home team here, because I think the Eagles defense will be too much for Brian Griese to handle. A couple Rexxy-like interceptions in this one will probably be enough to cover. I advise you to sit this one out, but if you’re picking your weekly office pool, and need to lean one way or another, take the Eagles because of their defensive strength.
St. Louis Rams @ Seattle Seahawks (-8.5):
(Line: Thursday, 3:30am EST: Belmont)
The Seahawks are the better team here. The Rams defense is brutal. Their offense is worse. They don’t have the bulk to out-muscle a relatively soft Hawks defensive front, and when Marc Bulger goes back to pass, his offensive line full of back-ups won’t give him nearly enough time to pick apart the Seahawks. I also don’t think the Hawks will struggle at home again after the Saints embarrassed them last week. This is usually where the Hawks step it up, and I think they’ll do just that this week at home.
This Week’s Top Team: 129 points… This is the best week of the season – the whole Tom Brady thing is where I went right, but there was still one donkey puncher out there… Check out my sleepers – I put out one hell of a fantasy performance there. Also, I killed it in my “bench em” section, as even the high scoring Giant receiver didn’t put much up.QB: Tom Brady vs. Miami: 50 points for Brady. Yes, it’s possible. Rare for a quarterback, but in a 6 point TD league, with a bonus here and there for long passes to amazingly good receivers, Tom did the dirty half-century mark right in. Tom’s 354 yards, flawless passing, and 6 TDs were a fantasy quarterback’s best this season. So it’s only down hill from here.
RB: Thomas Jones vs. Cincinnati: Thomas Jones, on the other hand, was a pile in Week 7, despite going head to head versus a terrible Bengals defense. New York scored a lot, and needed to pound the clock to keep Palmer and company off the field, but Jones couldn’t get going for what seems like the 6th week this season. Ugh. 67 yards, 6 points.
RB: Larry Johnson vs. Oakland: LJ finished with 19 fantasy points, good for 2nd in the league this weekend. He had 112 yards rushing, 20+ receiving, and a touchdown on the ground. Not a big day for running backs, but I’ll take the #2 guy any week.
WR: T.J Houshmandzadeh vs. N.Y. Jets: Housh had one of his least productive days of the season, but still put up 40 yards and another touchdown. 10 points from my receiver, I’ve had worse.
WR: Chad Johnson vs. NY Jets: Chad had 11 points, reeling in a bunch of yards without a score. The Bengals didn’t torch the Jets through the air as much as I thought they’d have to, because Kenny Watson was doing work, he went for 3 TDs, stealing TD dance thunder from Chad.
TE: Jason Witten vs. Minnesota: “I think Witten will go for about 100 yards, and maybe even a score.” (Me) Well, he had the most yards amongst tight ends, going for 86, just under my prediction, but Witten disappointed fantasy owners by not bringing in a touchdown. He’s a TE, 8 points is a nice day for this group.
K: Matt Bryant vs. Detroit: Bryant only had 1 FG and an extra point – his 40+ yarder made it a 5 point day for my kicker. These padded soccer players are killing me this year, go ahead and fade me on kickers…
D: Redskins vs. Cardinals: The Skins didn’t get to tear Tim Rattay a new one, as Kurt Warner elected to start. That didn’t make me too happy, but the Skins still finished 5th amongst defenses, putting up 20 points in my league that rewards solid defensive play.
LUCKY’S Week 7 SLEEPERS
Chad Pennington: Say what you will about Chad Pennington, but I put him up as a sleeper, and sure enough, he came through in fine fashion. Chad dealt out the 5th best days amongst fantasy quarterbacks, can’t say much bad about that. 26 pts and an A+ for me.
Jeff Garcia: Sticking with my A+ theme in the sleeper quarterback zone, Garcia finished 6th amongst signal callers and hooked me up with 21 fantasy points. That’s better than either of the Mannings or a Brees….
Maurice Jones-Drew: JD had 12 fantasy points, good for 13th overall – but the Jaguars fell behind early, and despite getting a fair amount of touches, Drew fell short of my expectations. Still, 12 points, and a Top 15 RB finish is pretty solid for a sleeper – so I’ll take a B-.
Brandon Jacobs: Jacobs finished 6th overall this week, as he reached the century mark for the 2nd straight week. He also tacked on a touchdown, making those who listened to me a smart group. A+
LenDale White: The guy they call “Chubs” was putting in work on Sunday. Talk about grinding it out, White had 27 carries to get him 104 yards (the yards were tough to come by when the Titans were running out the clock) and his 4 catches netted him 22 yards as well. The goal-line back grabbed a touchdown to boot, and he nabbed a #4 spot in this week’s running back rankings. A+
Laurence Maroney: Maroney didn’t get starter’s carries, and I was once again fooled by the Patriot running situation. LM did take 6 carries for 31 yards, and looked good in his limited action, but if you were fooled like I was, I’m sincerely sorry. F
Roddy White: White was clicking on some deep balls from Byron Leftwich, catching all 8 balls thrown his way, for 110 yards and a touchdown. Good for #5 amongst wide receivers. That’s what I’m talking about – A+
Greg Olsen: Olsen reeled in a couple passes for 46 yards, which wasn’t bad for TE’s but not the big sleeper stats I was looking for, really. C
Seattle’s DST: My sleeper pick was #1 overall – that’s a good thing, and that’s worth an A++ – championship. And wow, those Rams are even worse offensively than I thought.
LUCKY’S Week 7 Splinter-Butts (bench him, son)
Cleo Lemon: Lemon had just 12 fantasy points, and that was because of a big rushing touchdown that netted him half his stats. He played a little better than I thought, but he ranked 19th overall, making him not worth a start. Give me a B for this one.
Ahman Green: Green had 30+ rushing and 30+ receiving, but didn’t do much else. He got 6 fantasy points this week, finishing out of the Top 20. B+
Cedric Benson: Benson had 46 rushing yards and 5 total fantasy points – if you sat him like I suggested, you did the smart thing. B+
Javon Walker: Walker didn’t play, so this was an easy win for me. Apparently, the former Packer will be out of his Bronco digs for about another month. A
Plaxico Burress: “Either Plax has been playing too well or Nate Clements will be on him all day long. Either way, Plax is ready to bring it down a notch, those 8 touchdowns are a little out of the ordinary. Plus, the Giants will run the ball a lot against SF.” (Me) What can I say, when I call ’em good, I call ’em good. I was suggesting a benching of one of the hottest receivers in the game, and if you did, it paid off, Burress had 40 yards, and that’s it. A+
This Week’s Top Team: Somehow, somewhere, my RunDown for week 6 didn’t get put up. As you can imagine, I killed it. With LT and LJ, Tom Brady and Randy Moss, and I even had Plaxico up again – and that would have killed it – but lost in cyber space it is. So, I’ll just have to get back up and do damage again. Here’s how I’m going to do it.
QB: Tom Brady vs. Miami: I hate Miami’s team. Their defense is the worst thing about it. And I don’t thin Brady will let up this week. He’ll have yet another 3 touchdown game, because that’s what Brady does. He gets really hot girls pregers, and does work on the football field.
RB: Thomas Jones vs. Cincinnati: I know picking Thomas is a bit of a risk, but if the Jets want to slow down the Bengals, it’s not like they can rely on their defense. They’ll need Jones to account for about 150+ yards to have a chance. I think he will, and thus the Jets will be close.
RB: Larry Johnson vs. Oakland: L J will do the Raiders dirty on Sunday. Oakland showed last week that a star runner is like kryptonite to their chances of success on defense. L J will be running like a man possessed, trying to inch the Chiefs toward an unexpected playoff run. (I know it’s too early for that kind of talk, sorry)
WR: T.J Houshmandzadeh vs. N.Y. Jets: I like the Cincinnati connection on Sunday. Carson to TJ and Chad. I know Chad has been a little volatile, and TJ has just never stopped catching passes since the season started. But the Bengals have to win this game or they’ll self destruct. TJ and Chad will have a lot to do with that win.
WR: Chad Johnson vs. NY Jets: See above.
TE: Jason Witten vs. Minnesota: The Vikings have a tough defense, but struggle down the middle and stopping a decent passing attack. The Cowboys will be ready to play after losing to the Pats by 20, and I think Witten will go for about 100 yards, and maybe even a score. Lord knows running the ball rarely does dick against the Vikes.
K: Matt Bryant vs. Detroit: Detroit can’t stop much, and the Bucs aren’t a big scoring team. That means moving the ball and field goal tries to get a win. I like Bryant’s possibilities to do that here.
D: Redskins vs. Cardinals: The Cards will be wheeling Tim Rattay out there against a tough Redskins defense… Need I say more?
LUCKY’S Week 7 SLEEPERS
Chad Pennington: Chad may be the guy everyone loves to hate in New York right now. Well him and A-Rod, but that’s another story. Anyway, Pennington gets his “last chance” when he goes up against Cincinnati this weekend. If he can’t throw touchdowns against that defense, he’s a goner for sure. I like his chances, but think Clemmens is better for this team.
Jeff Garcia: The Bucs play the Lions, and I really don’t care if Detroit is coming off their bye week. I don’t care if they studied the Bucs all season long. The bottom line is, Jeff will have to produce to keep up with the Lions, and that makes him a good start.
Maurice Jones-Drew: Fred may be out for this game, that would mean a sure “huge game” from Jones-Drew. Look what he does with less than 15 carries, imagine what he’ll do with 20+.
Brandon Jacobs: The 49ers have a pretty solid secondary, either that or they can’t stop the run so teams feel fine rushing the ball 30 times a game. Either way, I like Jacobs to push for a score or two.
LenDale White: Chris Brown may be out this week, and Kerry Collins isn’t going to light up the airways if he starts. Either way, White is going to get plenty of touches, and against Houston’s rush defense, I like what White has to offer.
Laurence Maroney: With Morris hurt, this may be the perfect time to ride Maroney’s jog back to full health. They’ve been slow with the very talented back, and against the Dolphins looks like his time to shine.
Roddy White: I know the Falcons drop more passes than TO on a bad day, but White should find a way to torch the Saints. This game will be closer than many think, and White’s big plays will help keep the Falcons in it.
Greg Olsen: A tight end sleeper is a magnificent thing, and Olsen just might be your man this week. Philly’s secondary is hurting without Dawkins in, and a speedster like Olsen might just be the Bears’ only hope for big plays on Sunday.
Seattle’s DST: The Hawks play the Rams, and while Bulger is coming back, I don’t see that line every slowing down a Hawks rush that will be coming all day long. Also, Seattle needs this win bad after getting humiliated on Sunday Night Football by the Saints.
LUCKY’S Week 7 Splinter-Butts (bench him, son)
Cleo Lemon: Don’t be confused by the big stats last week, this week the Patriots come to town, and they aren’t the Browns. Look for Lemon to have a tough day at the helm minus his #1 receiver. I don’t I’d like to have to face the Patriots with a rookie starting at receiver – but that’s just me.
Ahman Green: Not only is Green in trouble going up against Tennessee, but the Titans D might feel like they have to be even stingier with Vince possibly out of the lineup. That combo means bad things for Green, who has been disappointing thus far.
Cedric Benson: Sure, the Bears wish they had Thomas Jones, because Benson isn’t doing it. But the Bears’ O-line has been pretty suspect to. Anyway, against Philly’s solid run defense, I don’t expect much out of Cedric.
Javon Walker: In his first game back, he has to play the Steelers? Yikes. The Steel show has shut down everyone this side of Anquan Boldin this season, and I don’t expect them to yield too much to the Broncos. Stay away from Walker another day.
Plaxico Burress: Either Plax has been playing too well or Nate Clements will be on him all day long. Either way, Plax is ready to bring it down a notch, those 8 touchdowns are a little out of the ordinary. Plus, the Giants will run the ball a lot against SF.
Fantasy Football Know-It-All
Sorry for the small paragraphs – Lucky’s “OLD” back is trying to get me out of this chair as fast as possible. These are the guys that aided my back pain this weekend…
Laurence Maroney: Not only do we here at LuckyLester.com think this guy is one of the most talented running backs in the league, but I personally think he has the talent to be the best fantasy back in the league. With Brady putting up huge numbers, and Belichick trying to hold off on breaking Laurence down, the guy only got 6 carries. He got 31 yards, but 3 points from my starting runner is a tough pill to swallow.
Marques Colston: I know the sophomore slump gets guys hard, but this was Colston’s 6th week of the season, and his 5th time producing 6 fantasy points or less – that’s just downright terrible. He makes me cry, mainly because I can’t drop this guy.
Joey Galloway: Joey had 4 points as well, but you probably, like me, expected him to do big terrible things to the Lions, especially with Jeff Garcia putting up 300+ yards and a couple scores. But, that wasn’t the case, and that kind of pissed me off.
Jerious Norwood: The Falcons needed to run, and they needed something better than Warrick Dunn’s 2 yards per carry – but still, Jerious managed only 3 fantasy points. How so low? Well, for the 5th time this year, he had 6 carries. In fact, this dynamic runner has never had more than 9 carries this season. This Bobby Patrino guy looks more and more like a dip-shit every day. To start the week, he dropped Grady Jackson, the defensive tackle that was killing opposing teams’ rushing attack. Nice, buddy.
Jason Campbell: I love this kid, but he had 1 damn point. He only got a few chances to throw the ball, but 95 yards – my god, tell one of those receivers to do something with their life. It’s hard to think about starting Campbell next week, especially with the Patriots looming.
Marc Bulger: -1 fantasy points – and he looked bad. Not only that, but when his head coach gave him a good talking to, Marc rolled the eyes like a little girl. Wow – this guy has SUCKED this season. Hard to watch him be this bad, unless you’re a Hawk fan. 21-40 for 225 yards and 3 picks – nice day, bub.
(Also considered; – All Rams and Dolphins – get a damn win, fellas, would you?)
Week 7 proved to be another stinger, and nobody likes their arm feeling like it’s on fire after a hit to the neck. Stingers suck. Anyway, here’s how my terrible Week 7 panned out.
LUCKY LESTER’S Free NCAA Football Picks
Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (-18) @ San Jose State: loss
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Belmont)
Colt Brennan looked confused at times, and his receivers dropped plenty of balls. The kids still tossed 5 touchdowns, but those 5 interceptions made this game closer than I needed it to be. The Warrior pulled it out in overtime, but I lost my spread easily. One game in, one loss.
Oregon State Beavers @ California Bears (-14): loss
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Belmont)
“I know this is a conference game, and you’d think I would have learned my lesson betting against a big spread and the Stanford Cardinals last week, but that just isn’t’ the case.” As it turns out, if you’re ranked in the Top 5, and in the Pac 10 – you’re about to be upset. I guess I need to learn my lesson, but in this one, the injury to Nate Longshore didn’t help my cause all that much. I was killed by injured quarterbacks all week long, in both the NCAAs and the NFL.
Auburn Tigers @ Arkansas Razorbacks (-3): loss
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Belmont)
Auburn pulled out this victory in one hell of an ugly contest. Arkansas pulled ahead with 2 and change to go, but Auburn kicked a game winning field goal for a 9-7 win. I just didn’t expect the Tigers to shut down McFadden and Jones the way that they did.
San Diego State Aztecs @ Utah Utes (-14): win
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Belmont)
Thank God for the Utes!!! They dominated the Aztecs by just enough to make me a winner… in one game. Well, what can you do? Bet ’em big and go home with a loss. Believe you me, this has been a painful last couple weeks for Ole Lucky’s pocketbook.
Washington State Cougars (+19) @ Oregon Ducks: loss
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Bodog)
“Everything points to the Ducks in this game, except when you look at the small print.” And let me tell you this, sometimes the small print misguides you into believing that the past matters and the Cougars are actually decent enough to hang with Dennis Dixon and the Ducks… Well, forget the small print because it straight broke my balls in this one.
Luckily for me, I was once again a winner with my Elite picks – only 3-2, but I’ll take it…
This Week’s Top Team: Wow… tough week for my fantasy squad, I hope you forgot to read Week 7’s articles and did better than I did. I did tally 98 points for my squad.
QB: Brett Favre: Brett was no Peyton, Donovan, or Vick, who all went for over 30 fantasy points, but he did manage 19 points with a 200 yard 2 touchdown performance on Sunday.
RB: Kevin Jones: KJ rolled with 19 fantasy points, scoring one touchdown on 57 yards receiving, also tallying 86 yards on the ground with a 5.7 ypc average. Not bad for a Lion.
RB: Clinton Portis: CP struggled because the Redskins tumbled after half time. His 43 rushing yards and 21 receiving yards got me 6 points. But he didn’t have a TD and rarely saw the field after the 3rd quarter.
WR: Plaxico Burress: Burress only grabbed two balls in Monday Night’s beatdown on the Cowboys, but he made the most of them. He racked up 94 yards and a touchdown on way to 17 points for my fantasy squad. Picking up the slack.
WR: Anquan Boldin: Boldin’s 59 yards didn’t make me smile, but I can’t blame the guy. It’s not like he was dropping passes. However, I can blame myself for picking AB as my top WR of the week. Damn. 5 points.
TE: Randy McMichael: Another nice day from Randy Mac hit me up for 7 points on 77 receiving yards. Not bad, but Randy, get Joey to see you in the end zone for God’s sake.
K: John Kasey: 2 extra points… Damn I can’t wait for Wilkins to get back on my squad.
D: Broncos: Thank goodness for the Broncos. IF it weren’t for a last second touchdown by the Browns, a shut out would have really impressed me. However, they were the 2nd ranked defense this week with 23 fantasy points.
LUCKY’S Week 2 SLEEPERS
Joey Harrington: Joey had 3 picks, but his fantasy stat line was freaking baler. 414 yards and two touchdowns was good for 24 fantasy points, Top 10 in the league. A+
Chester Taylor: Chester had a day. Actually, he didn’t do much until his 95 yard touchdown run, but then again, he had a 95 yard touchdown run, so he didn’t need to do much. His TD gave him 23 fantasy point, ranking him 4th in the RB rankings. A+
Dominic Rhodes: Even Edgerrin James had a better YPC average than Rhodes on Sunday. I wonder what Nic’s yardage totals would look like if he was on the Cards? Same goes for Edge on the Colts. F
Greg Jennings: 1 catch for 14 yards… Ouch… Maurice Clarett almost had that many points. Jennings got hurt, but wow, look at my luck this week. F
Matt Jones: The Great White Hype didn’t play, again. But had he played he wouldn’t have done dick because the Jaguars were terrible on Sunday. F
Ben Watson: Ben had 60 yards, but was held scoreless once again as I only collected 6 points with this sleeper. C
Steelers DST: Ran all over by Atlanta, and Vick of all people had 4 touchdown passes. To say the least, the Steelers had 5 points and didn’t’ work out for me. F
LUCKY’S Week 1 WUSSIES
Brad Johnson: Brad didn’t do much, but then again, he never does. His 12 points were average, but I hope you had a better option on Sunday.
Reuben Droughns: It’s never good when you’re a starting running back and you don’t register on the first page of high scores for RB’s. More than 30 guys had a better day at the RB position. I’d say I made a good call here.
Hines Ward: HAHAHAHA! What an idiot I look like here. Ward would have single handily taken out my fantasy team this week. Hines was no wussie, he was a flat out stud!
Jeremy Shockey: Don’t bet on Jeremy in prime time. Shockey, though its amazing with his ridiculously loud personality, always manages to struggle in the spotlight. His words about Bill Parcells a year ago will have him interviewed and questioned all week. That won’t help him. Don’t expect much from the U’s biggest fan.
Redemption Week… 9-3-2 followed by 4-9… I’m up one win in two weeks. Not spectacular, but that makes me feel a little better considering the blunder-filled slap in the face I acquired in Week 6! This next week, I’m targeting a 10-3 record with a huge upset here and there, err, in Indianapolis…???Carolina (+3.5) at Cincinnati: Like I said last week, taking the Panthers as an underdog is like money in the bank. And since I’m all about some mo money, I have to put my chips on the Panthers. Carolina has a little momentum, in the form of Steve Smith (4 straight W’s) when Smith plays, and the Bengals are starting to fall to all the distractions that have plagued their club since the off season. Take the Panthers as dogs, always a solid bet.
Detroit at N.Y. Jets (-3.5): Losing Shaun Rogers to steroid use will demoralize a Lion defense that already looked up to Miami. That one key loss will blow up any momentum the Lions carried after their first win last week against the Buff. This game will be a shoot out, no doubt about that, but 10 points more from New York is no stretch.
Green Bay (+5) at Miami: The Packers don’t have much of a running game, but who can cure that health issue better than the Dolphins? As far as the Packer passing attack, I know for a fact that Old Gray Beard can still wing the rock. Greg Jennings has been fantastic in his rookie season, and The Donald should be back for this one as well. Don’t be stunned by the 2nd Packer win of the season, and just another loss in a long line of failures out of Miami.
Jacksonville (-9.5) at Houston: The Texans aren’t a popular pick here, and I can see why. Even without their stud linebacker, Mike Peterson, the Jaguars will still act as a wall against the Texans feeble ground game. In the secondary, Jax is better than advertised. A couple big plays here, some nice defensive stops, and you look up at the scoreboard to see the Jaguars up by 24 by the end of the 3rd quarter.
New England (-5) at Buffalo: Those pesky Patriots are up against another easy foe in Week 7. Is it just me or do the Patriots always seem to play bad teams? You have to go all the way back to 2002 to find the Pats losing a game after their bye week. After Sunday, you’ll still have to look that far back. Buffalo has tailed off recently, and although the Pats like to play close games, bye weeks are their babies. Good teams win, great coaches always win after their bye.
Philadelphia (-5) at Tampa Bay: Historically, the Eagles and Donovan McNabb often come back strong the week after a loss. Last year, they lost to Atlanta, the beat the Niners 42-3. They lost to Dallas, the beat San Diego. In ’04, they lost to Pittsburgh then promptly smashed the Cowboys 49-21. McNabb just hates losing, you can see it on his face, and when he just lost a game, he blows up the very next week. It’s not any different this year. Check the week after the Eagles lost to the Giants. Tampa isn’t ready for the Eagles, especially after dealing their top defensive tackle, Booger McFarland.
Pittsburgh at Atlanta (+2.5): The Falcons haven’t played well lately, and finally Big Ben Roethilisberger looks like he’s got everything back on track. Not this time. The Falcons will make big defensive plays, and absolutely shut down the Steeler running game. With too much defensive secondary speed, Atlanta will have all corners covered on way to a close win at home.
San Diego Chargers (-5) at Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs just don’t have the passing game to compete with the Chargers. I love Larry Johnson, hell, I even think he’s a better back than LT, but with SD dominating the poor O-Line in Kansas City, you can bet LJ will have another tough game between the tackles. Phillip Rivers is the real deal. It’s nice to see both he and Brees playing well this season.
Denver (-4.5) at Cleveland: I think Jake Plummer is very limited, and the Broncos (I mean Mike Shanahan) love to sit on a little lead and punish me for betting with them on a big spread. That being said, the Broncos defense could very well be too tough for the Brownies. Clevelands rushing attack is more of a tea party than an attack, and the Broncos are back to bashing heads on defense. Expect a low scoring 17 – 6 game in Cleveland.
Arizona (-3) at Oakland: Matt Leinart and the Cards get their second win of the season this week in Oakland. Arizona is bad, but everyone that has anything to do with even thinking about an egg shaped ball knows the Raiders are worse. Randy Moss, LaMont Jordan, I don’t give a damn. I have just as good a chance to win football games coaching that team as Art “freaking” Shell does. I’ve never seen a more pathetic team. This game should be a dandy! Puke.
Minnesota (+7) at Seattle: The Hawks are the better team, and they should pull a close one out at home against the Vikings, but in what should be a close game, I have to take the Vikings and a touchdown. With Stevey Hutch coming back to Sea Town, you can bet the Vikings can’t wait to run the ball. That will slow down the game, and since the Hawks haven’t done much to stop much recently, it should also produce some points for the Vikings. Brad Johnson won’t get the win, but he’ll keep his squad in it. A very underrated defense from Minnesota will limit the Hawks scoring. Take the points.
Washington (+10) at Indianapolis: Call me crazy, but after losing to the freaking Titans, the Redskins will finally wake up. Defensively, they’re too talented for the Colts to run the ball, and with Shawn Springs coming back, their secondary gets better too. I don’t know if Mark Brunell can still win big games, but he’ll find holes in that Colt defense. Clinton will run rapid, and maybe, just maybe, the Redskins will finish a job very similar to the one the Cardinals failed to complete last Monday Night. I like the Skins with 10 points.
N.Y. Giants (+3.5) at Dallas: I don’t like Dallas, never have, never will. TO is a gong show. This game will be a score fest. Neither defense can promise a stop at any point in the game. But with Stuck in Glue Drew back there for the Boys, you can bet a couple sacks, an interception and a fumble or two will set the Giants that much farther ahead of Dallas. With big turnovers in my mind, I have to expect an upset in Texas this week.
For the 2nd week in a row, I busted out 7 wins in 10 attempts. That means I’m 22-8 in the last 3 weeks of college football. Yes. Championship type stuff. I started hot early, had a couple tough ones, and finished with a bang. Check it out and love the outcome as I put up 7 W’s in Week 7.
Virginia Tech Hokies @ Boston College Eagles (+3): WINNER! “The Eagles, with a big win over Clemson, a 4-1 record, and coming off a bye week will surprise a lot of people when they dismantle the Hokies.” (me) What can I say? Some times it’s best to just quote myself. The Eagles soared to an “upset” victory over the Hokies on Thursday Night. 1 game 1 win.
Temple Owls @ Clemson Tigers (-44): WINNER! Those wonderful little Tigers followed through, and I took this game easily. Considering Clemson only scored in the first 3 quarters, the cover was even more impressive. It was nice to have two wins before the weekend arrived.
Wake Forest Demon Deacons (+4) @ North Carolina State Wolfpack: WINNER! There was no letting down on either side. This was one hell of a football game. The Deacons had points to burn, but they came with it, and busted out of NC State with a victory and a 6-1 record.
Syracuse Orange (+25.5) @ West Virginia Mountaineers: WINNER! Syracuse finally lost a game by more than 10. However, they didn’t lose a game by more than 24, and on Saturday, that’s what mattered most to Ol’ Lucky. This game was close early, and even in the middle, but down the stretch, the West Virginia rushing attack, both Slaton and Pat White, was too much for the Orange. But I win anyway! Moowah ha ha ha!
South Florida Bulls (-2) @ North Carolina Tarheels: WINNER! This game was easy to call. The Tarheels got stomped on as the Bulls gave NC the horns early and often. I’m looking forward to the basketball season, as are Heel fans everywhere.
Minnesota Golden Gophers (+8.5) @ Wisconsin Badgers: LOSER! I was the tool for taking the Gophers like a fool. Wisconsin had this game wrapped up from the moment they walked onto the field. I don’t know what Minnesota was doing on Saturday, because it definitely wasn’t playing football. My firs loss was a slap in the face.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (+2.5) @ Navy Midshipmen: WINNER! Rutgers rode out of their game with Navy, easily holding on to their undefeated record. How does 32-0 sound in a game they weren’t expected to win? Rutgers was the better team in this one. I like the Knights, but the true tests will come against Louisville and West Virginia. Two tough games.
Marshall Thundering Herd (+4) @ Southern Methodist Mustangs: LOSER! Marshall just couldn’t get it down the stretch. After the first half, the Thundering Herd was up 4, and looked like they were ready to pull the upset. But as is often the case, the Mustangs won the second half and the game. Two 4th quarter touchdowns doomed me in, as SMU pulled ahead by 10.
Iowa State Cyclones(+19.5) @ Oklahoma Sooners: LOSER! Iowa State just couldn’t get it done on the Sooners side of the field. As 20 point underdogs, I was sure this game would be close, and I’d get the win. But Oklahoma wasn’t having any of that. ISU could only manage a safety in the 2nd half as they were ousted by 25 points on the road. My 3rd and last loss on Saturday was a tough one.
California Golden Bears (-8) @ Washington State Cougars: WINNER! Cal was just too good early, and that was plenty to put down the Cougs. WSU had their chances, but couldn’t put anything on the board after their 2nd quarter field goal. Cal’s 21 first half points were all they needed for the win and my 7th victory of Week 7. 7 in 7… I hope that trend continues in week 8 if you get my drift.