Free NFL Football Picks 07-08 Week 9

A huge 6-1 week left me rolling in the dough, finally, in Week 8. This week, I’m trying to re-invest and demonstrate a more even slope toward the top of the damn chart. I was 7-1 with my elite picks as well, tough to beat a 13-2 run in the NFL, I’ll tell you that much. Here’s my Free picks for Week 9’s NFL games, as an added bonus, I’m giving out 8 picks this week.

Houston Texans @ Oakland Raiders (-3):
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

This is a very tough game for me. First and foremost, I don’t think the Raiders should ever be favored, but this might be the exception to the rule. Matt Schaub is out, Ahman Green is probably out, and Andre Johnson is probably out. Also, Josh McCown makes the Raiders better via the air, which should open up the rushing attack a little more, so without further a due, I’ll take the Raiders at home minus a field goal.

Washington Redskins (-3.5) @ N.Y. Jets:
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

Finally, another defense that will make Jason Campbell look good. After the last few weeks, being a Campbell fan has been tough sledding, but the Jets will show up to give up tons of yards, tackle poorly, and guard next to no one. I like the Redskins here to turn it around. And personally, I’d like to thank the Patriots for making the Redskins look and feel so bad that not only is the line a little lower than I think it should be, but the Redskins should come into this game as fired up as they’ve been all season long. With Clemmens in, the Jets have more of a chance, but with Coles out (head injury), the receiving corps will struggle a bit. Cotchery isn’t good enough yet to be the true #1 guy.

Arizona Cardinals @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3.5):
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

I guess I like the Bucs’ ability to do all the little things right. I think they’re outmatched talent-wise, but being at home, with a big opportunity to get a big win, against a Cardinal team that is prone to mistakes, make me like the Bucs here. Jeff Garcia is a winner when getting even an ounce of hope. That’s not only admirable, but worth a bet. Plus, I like this Earnest Graham cat a lot.

New England Patriots (-5) @ Indianapolis Colts:
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

I’m going with the Patriots here, but not because this bet has good value, the value is in fact terrible. This has to be the first time in the history of lines and wagering on sporting events that an undefeated returning champion is an underdog at home, let alone by 5, 6, and even 7 points at some books. The problem is, I actually think this is a fair assessment of the talent of these two teams. The Patriots are probably the best team I’ve seen for a very long time. They are very good in every aspect of the game, and you know what they say, “Hard work beats talent unless talent works hard.” The Patriots work the hardest and have the most talent. How can you bet against them?

San Francisco 49ers (+3.5) @ Atlanta Falcons:
(Line: Tuesday, 11:00pm EST: 5Dimes)

I think the Falcons are too far gone to win this game. San Francisco still has a shot at the West, despite their recent struggles. Frank Gore will find running room against a very bad rushing defense that just lost their best run-stuffing defensive lineman. There are many Falcons that think, and have expressed their opinion that, the front office is giving up on this season, and preparing for next year. True or not, that’s not the kind of thing I like the team I’m betting on to be thinking. Needless to say, I’ll be taking the Niners.

San Diego Chargers (-7) @ Minnesota Vikings:
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

I think the Vikings can play well against teams with average to poor rush defenses. The Chargers have a beastly defensive front 7 with plenty of insanely fast speedsters with a knack for making the big play. That’s not good for a team that has already been dealing with 8 man fronts. The Vikings don’t have enough through the air to keep up with the Chargers, and defensively, they don’t have enough in the secondary to hang with a pass catching unit that got a whole lot more dangerous with the Chris Chambers addition.

Seattle Seahawks (+1.5) @ Cleveland Browns:
(Line: Monday, 4:00pm EST: Bookmaker)

I may be a bit stuck on my pre-season assessment of team talent here, but I think the Hawks are going to kill the Browns. I think the Hawks’ defense is one of the better units in football, and the Browns have been playing out of their minds offensively. That means there is a lull on the way. The Hawks bring enough pressure to keep Derek Anderson uncomfortable, and when that happens to the big youngster, he seems to flash into mistake mode. The Hawks have a solid offense, good enough to put up 30 on the Browns. That should easily win this game.

Baltimore Ravens (+10) @ Pittsburgh Steelers:
(Line: Monday, 11:00pm EST: BodogLife)

With everything going against the Ravens in this one, I have a feeling they could play a lot better than people are giving them credit for. They’ve been one of the better ATS teams in football over the last 5 years, and I think they can hang within 10 of the Steelers on Monday Night’s grand stage, even in Pittsburgh.

2007 Fantasy Football Review – Week 9

This Week’s Top Team: Without any Pats or Colts, and without a running back (Gore didn’t play) I still put up some big numbers. Not a bad day minus a guy. 127 points – think about it, that’s dirty.QB: Matt Hasselbeck vs. Cleveland: Despite his two turnovers, Matt had a grand day, especially considering the fact that Shaunna Alexander runs like a my little pony for God’s sake. Anyway. Matt’s 318 yards and two touchdowns were good for 21 fantasy points.

RB: Clinton Portis vs. N.Y. Jets: 196 yards and a touchdown for the big guy. Clinton absolutely carried the Redskins (on an off day) on his back to win in New York. Portis’s 196 was a great day, but 100 yards and a couple touchdowns short of the best Week 9 runner. Still, Portis’s 25 points were solid.

RB: Frank Gore vs. Atlanta: Frank Gore didn’t play. I thought he was a shoe in for this week, but apparently, sometime (Friday) after I published this section, he started to pull up lame and didn’t play against Atlanta. Hicks and Robinson (the guys’ who took Gore’s place) both ran pretty well, but I’ll just take a zero for this mistake.

WR: Lee Evans vs. Cincinnati: Lee did work, putting up 165 yards and a touchdown, good for 22 fantasy points. That’s legit.

WR: Terrell Owens vs. Philadelphia: TO did his work early and late, and he did a lot of it. He busted out 174 yards on 10 grabs, and had a long 45 yard touchdown, which racked him up for 25 points.

TE: Antonio Gates vs. Minnesota: Finally I pick Gates, and the cat goes for 1 catch and 10 yards – the Chargers weren’t ready for this game, that’s for sure.

K: Josh Brown vs. Cleveland: Finally I grabbed a kicker that put up some points. Brown had 3 short field goals and 3 extra points, tallying 12 on the day. That’s my huge FG day of the season thus far.

D: Chargers vs. Minnesota: The Vikings rushed for 296 yards against the Chargers… What? That was Adrian Peterson all by himself? Wow. I thought the Chargers could easily shut down the Vikings rushing attack, but AP came out after the half and absolutely diced up the Chargers for the best rushing day of all time. I still got a 109 yard TD, and 11 points from my D.


Kellen Clemens: My man Clemens had 226 yards and a TD, not to mention 48 rushing yards while he just missed helping the Jets pull an upset over the Redskins. Blast! (A Jet win gave me my suicide pool) Anyway, KC went for 19 fantasy points, and I get an A for that one.

Phillip Rivers: I don’t even want to talk about it. His receivers dropped 3 balls in the 1st half, and Rivers’ confidence was shot. But he just flat out sucked against one of the lesser secondaries in the league. F!

Earnest Graham: It took him all of 34 carries, but the young back went for 124 yards and a touchdown on the ground in a big Bucs win over the Cardinals. He also grabbed a couple passes for 13 yards. Graham’s 19 points give me at least a B+.

Kevin Jones: Jones didn’t get too many looks after the Lions started killing the Broncos, he only had 72 yards on 17 carries. But he did alright. Anyway, I’ll take a D+ here, for blowout’s sake.

Rudi Johnson: 9 rushes for 11 yards – yikes – the Bengals are now officially the BUNGLES again… F stands for Fantasy Failure on this one.

Deion Branch: He didn’t play, and since I said, He’s a nice option if he plays, I’m just going to take a pass here.

Chris Chambers: 5 grabs for 59 yards, not what I was hoping for, and I blame Phillip Rivers for most of it – he just isn’t throwing the ball with any velocity what-so-ever. C-

Tony Scheffler: This guy had only 46 yards,and his fumble cut his fantasy points in half. He did lose his starting quarterback in the 1st half, but still, not a good day for The Chef. D-

Titans DST: 25 points for the Titans – call it a win, chalk it up, a big day for my sleeper defense of the week. A+

LUCKY’S Week 9 Splinter-Butts (bench him, son)

Brett Favre: Had a huge day!

LaDainian Tomlinson: 16 carries for 40 yards? Bad day for the king. He did score a touchdown, but if you had a solid #3 option, he should have been benched going up against the Vikings.

Reggie Bush: Had a huge day!

Roy Williams: 3 catches for 44 yards – this was a good sit if you had the marbles.

James Jones: 3 grabs for 32 yards, and Jones is officially the 3rd option at receiver. Koren Robinson might start cutting in to the rookies’ looks also – so don’t expect too much out of the youngster. Good sit if you didn’t ride the hype train.

2007 Fantasy Football theRUNDOWN Week 9

This Week’s Top Team: No Patriots, No Colts – I’m leaving that game out of this week’s Fantasy RunDown… Too much hype, I don’t think I can type the words Brady and Manning after seeing them so damn much all week long.

QB: Matt Hasselbeck vs. Cleveland: This may be a push, but here’s my reasoning, not even the terrible Browns defense will make life easier on Shaunna Alexander, but I know the Hawks will put up 4 touchdowns at least in this game. If Shaun’s not getting them, then maybe Matt will. With Deion Branch, Marcus Pollard, and DJ Hackett back this week, Matt will have no shortage of targets.

RB: Clinton Portis vs. N.Y. Jets: I don’t ever think Clinton is a safe play, but his upside this week could be big going up against New York. Since I’m leaving the “undefeateds” out of this week’s section, I’m taking a few more chances. The Jets have a terrible rush defense, and Washington imposes their rushing will on every opponent besides the One. I’ll take Clinton to have his best game of the season against the Jets.

RB: Frank Gore vs. Atlanta: Yeah, I know, Frank is all over the fantasy world as the biggest bust of the first half, but I don’t think it’s his fault. He’s ran pretty well, just hasn’t been in enough games to get the touches he needs to put up huge numbers. I think this weeks’ game against an Atlanta defense that just cut their top run stuffer is a good place to start. Run Frank, Run.

WR: Lee Evans vs. Cincinnati: Lee is a risky business type pick, but he also has 3 or 4 games a year where he goes bonkers on his unsuspecting opponents. The Bengals are a good defense to take advantage of, and I think JP Losman back at the helm will help Evans do his damage.

WR: Terrell Owens vs. Philadelphia: TO has a huge mouth, and I’m rooting for Brian Westbrook to crack him in his fat teeth, but I think Owens will have his best game yet against his former team.

TE: Antonio Gates vs. Minnesota: The run game won’t be on fire, because there’s not team better at shutting down the run than the Vikings. But that secondary is out to lunch, and Gates will put up big numbers at TE, what’s new?

K: Josh Brown vs. Cleveland: I’m saving my butt here, I know Kickers have been killing me all season, so I’m taking the kicker for my quarterback’s team. That way, if Matt sucks it up and doesn’t put up TDs, one of my guys will be scoring.

D: Chargers vs. Minnesota: Look at that offense in Minnesota, all they can do is run. If you can’t take advantage of the Chargers’ mediocre secondary, they will kill you quick. The Vikings can’t and the Chargers will.


Kellen Clemmens: Buffalo’s defense has played way better than I expected, but I think Clemmens will come out and show his head coach why the change should have been made weeks ago. He’ll have a nice day with at least 2 touchdowns.

Phillip Rivers: Rivers has been up and down this season, against the Vikings I expect this youngster to be on the up swing. He’s one of my top plays for Week 9 – go with him.

Earnest Graham: He’ll get lots of looks against the Cardinals, and while I think Arizona is better against the run this season, the Bucs have a good enough coaching staff to make their game plan work, and thus Graham is a nice option if you need one.

Kevin Jones: I don’t like Detroit’s offensive line all that much, but Jones is explosive, and he runs tough enough to put it to that suspect defensive front in Denver. The Lions have been running a lot more lately, that’s good for Jones and his owners.

Rudi Johnson: Rudi’s back, and while he has a little bit of the Shaunna Alexander puss-foot-itas, I think he’ll be back to running hard when he gets the chance to show why he’s the right man for the job when Cinci plays Buffalo this weekend. Also, Buffalo’s defense isn’t all that good against the run.

Deion Branch: Branch is a good and consistent player, and he gets to come back against the Cleveland Browns, the defense that allows more yards per game than any other unit in the league. I think Branch is a nice option if he plays.

Chris Chambers: The guy already caught one touchdown pass last week in his first game, and this week should give him more chances to impress his new teammates. Everyone and their mother seems to torch the Vikings secondary, I think LT’s presence will have the Vikings making Rivers, Chambers, Gates, and Jackson beat them. I think they will.

Tony Scheffler: The big cat is still on the free agent lists in most leagues, and he’s about to go on a second half touchdown spree that will make Gates and Gonzalez look over their shoulders. When he puts up 6 scores in the next 9 games, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Titans DST: I’m once again not too impressed with the Panthers, and David Carr starting this week doesn’t do much to make me think things will be any different. This should be a close one, but lots of mistakes will have passes up for grabs.

LUCKY’S Week 9 Splinter-Butts (bench him, son)

Brett Favre: It doesn’t seem like a good season to go against the Favre, but I don’t think this Green Bay God will have a very good game against the Chiefs. Kansas City has had 2 weeks to look at this game, and they have a solid defensive core that can pressure Brett and take advantage of any Brett-like mistakes. My gut says sit the old man this week.

LaDainian Tomlinson: I can’t believe I’m saying this, and I’m not going to actually sit him, but I think LT could have a bad game against Minnesota. I know the Vikings have to have an off week some week, and this could be the week, but I think that front 7 is excited at their chance to stop the king. That’s my advice, but I completely understand if you ignore it, like I’m doing.

Reggie Bush: If I’m saying sit LT, I might as well go and tell you to sit Bush as well. Reggie hasn’t shown me much this season, and the Jaguars are definitely stout against the run. Even with Quinn Gray in at QB for the Jags, I think they have a very good chance of upsetting the Saints in New Orleans, and their ability to shut down the run is a big reason why.

Roy Williams: This guy is a stud, but he doesn’t get the ball enough in Detroit, and I think the two super stars at corner for the Broncos will be up and ready to put last week’s loss behind them, you know, the one where Greg Jennings and James Jones ran right by Bly and Champ for two long touchdowns. Roy steps in against Denver on a bad week.

James Jones: I know this guy is a huge pick-up this week for fantasy owners everywhere, but I wouldn’t start him this week. Rookies are up and down to say the least, and KC’s defense will be ready. Driver will be more involved this week, and that takes away from the younger guys for the Pack.

Fantasy Football Tear Jerkers – Week 9

Fantasy Football Know It All

A couple of these donkeys hit close to home in Week 9, prying fantasy victory from my very palms. Check out my Tearjerkers for week 9.

Lamont Jordan/Dominic Rhodes: Thanks a lot for your guys’ services, but the 3rd year back out of USC, Justin Fargas, made you guys look like old and useless contract problems that will be taken care of next season. Fargas had 23 totes for 104 yards and a touchdown, where you guys combined for 2 fantasy points, both Lamont’s – like I said, you’re killing guy who thought he was rich when you produced earlier in the year Lamont.

Frank Gore: Didn’t start after guaranteeing that you would be running on Sunday. Apparently you aren’t super-human, big guy – but I still love your game. And I think you’ll bound back – but for now, you’re killing me smalls.

Ronald Curry: I can’t blame you for your 12 yard performance and your 1 fantasy point – but I sure can shed a tear over it. McCown was even back, and you do well with him throwing you the ball. I thought you’d have a huge season, and thus far you’ve only tricked me into believing it is possible. I need a big 2nd half from you Curry, no more of this tearjerker business.

Travis Henry: 31 yards against the Lions? Wow, things are dicey in Denver. Henry, I expected something close to the rushing championship from you, buddy, and 31 freaking yards, and 4 total fantasy points against the Lions isn’t most exciting thing I’ve ever seen. In fact, it rips tears from my eyes when I need a decent game from you for a big win. Jerk.

Roy Williams: The Lions scored 44 points, and Roy had 44 yards… No scores. That in and of itself is a tear ripper. I nee more, Roy. More.

Shaunna Alexander: Not a misspelling. This guy isn’t running like a 4.6 running, 235 pound man – he’s running like Shaunna. I hate watching him. It’s freaking painful.

(Consideration from the 49ers not on this list, and everyone else that had a huge day against me, or a bad day for me – thanks)

Week 9 College Football Picks Review: 2007

I had some tough luck on Saturday, and that shows with all that good karma I had coming my way on Sunday (12-2 overall in my NFL picks). Anyway, check out my review and maybe you’ll be convinced that my 2-3 should have very well been a 4-1.

LUCKY LESTER’S Free NCAA Football Review

Free Picks: Week 9

Minnesota Golden Gophers (+23.5) @ Michigan Wolverines: loss
(Line: Thursday, 5:00am EST: Belmont)

With Michigan up 10-0 with a few minutes gone in the 2nd quarter, I liked my chances, basically up 33 points… Chances? Well, they were crushed when the Wolverines shutout the Gophers 34-0 after that, and I lost this 23.5 point game by half a damn point. Talk about bitter, that was like drinking pure cranberry juice after rinsing with Listerine. It was Carlos Brown’s 85 yard touchdown run with 9 minutes left in the 4th that killed me, well, aside from Minnesota going 45 minutes without a score, that hurt as well. Tough game to lose, even tougher to watch.

Florida International @ Arkansas Razorbacks (-39): win
(Line: Thursday, 3:00pm EST: Belmont)

“There are a lot of points on the board here, but the Razorbacks are going to be very close to shutting out FLINT, and I think McFadden, Jones, and company can put up 7 or 8 touchdowns. That will be enough in this one. ” Well, Flint put up 10, but as I imagined, the Razorbacks were ready to destroy Flint, rolling them by 48 and a much needed win for good Ole Lucky Lester.

Arizona Wildcats @ Washington Huskies (-3.5): loss
(Line: Thursday, 3:00pm EST: Belmont)

Talk about an absolutely brutal finish for Washington Husky backers such as myself. Since the opening day win over Syracuse (a game I picked) the Dogs have killed me one way or the other. This one I thought was well in hand, when I turned the channel up 41-26 half way through the 4th. Boy was I wrong. The Wildcats scored quick, then the Dog continued the collapse by fumbling on their own half of the field. The Cats punched that one in as well, and a two point conversion tied it. Still, the Huskies wasted another chance, and the Wildcats put together a touchdown drive to take the lead. 22 points in the 4th quarter – when will these Huskies learn? Better yet, when will I learn?

Baylor Bears @ Kansas State Wildcats (-24.5): win
(Line: Thursday, 3:00pm EST: WSEX)

“Kansas State is too good for the Baylor Bears. The Wildcats do all the little things right, and that’s the type of team that kills Baylor. It may seem like a lot of points, and I understand that, but the Bears haven’t lost a game by less than 20 points all season long. 5 losses, all by 20 points or more. I like the Wildcats in that situation.” Chalk it up as 6 losses and still by 20 points or more, one by 38 points, this one, a 51-13 stomping by the Kansas State Wildcats. And Baylor scored in the 4th, late. This was a good win.

Nebraska Cornhuskers @ Texas Longhorns (-20.5): loss
(Line: Thursday, 3:00pm EST: WSEX)

This was the only loss I think I picked wrong on Saturday. Yes, basically, I’m saying this is the only pick I would have changed after watching Saturday’s game. The Longhorns were in a lull, and the Cornhuskers played their best football of the season. I should have at least felt that possibly coming, and just left this game alone. The other games, I would pick the same if I had the chance to do it again.

2006 Fantasy Football Review – Week 9

This Week’s Top Team: I couldn’t quite get to 150, but 144 isn’t too shabby either… This is how I broke down the 14 barrier…

QB: Peyton Manning: Peyton piled up the yards against the Patriots on route to a huge win over New England on Sunday Night Football. With 2 touchdowns passes and over 300 yards, Peyton was 4th in the league with 23 fantasy points this week.

RB: Larry Johnson: Larry matched LT’s yardage totals, rushing for 172, but his single score brought his total to 23 fantasy points, good for 5t amongst all running backs in Week 9.

RB: LaDainian Tomlinson: LT busted out as the number 1 fantasy scorer in the running back class. His 172 yards and 3 touchdowns made me a happy man to the tune of 37 fantasy points.

WR: Terrell Owens: Romo’s gonna start yelling at TO if he continues to drop huge game winning plays like he has the last couple weeks. 2 weeks ago it was a 4th down play that TO let slip, and this week, a 70 yard touchdown bomb right on the money broke through Owen’s grasp. But TO got his points, scoring 13 (76 yards and a score) good for 13 fantasy points, and a Top 10 ranking.

WR: Marvin Harrison: “This game will be seen everywhere, and Marvin always produces in these situations.” What can I say, Marvin is a prime time performer. Did you see his catch in the endzone, the one handed stab, and the tight rope balancing act? 8 catches, 2 touchdowns, 145 yards, Marvin was the 2nd highest point scorer, busting out with 26 fantasy points.

TE: Algae Crumpler: Crumps had 47 yards and a touchdown, good for 10 fantasy points, and 4th overall in the race for this week’s top tight end. I’ll take 10 from a TE any week.

K: Jeff Wilkins: Jeff had 1 field goal (41 yards) and 2 extra points, which could very well get him the boot for next weeks game against the Hawks. 6 points.

D: Bears: Wow.. Chicago got run by Joey and the Dolphins… I must admit, I had a hunch something like this would happen sooner or later to the Bears… But I didn’t think sooner… 6 measly fantasy points put me in a defensive rut.


Rexxy Grossman: Ugh… 6 fantasy points… F!

Tony Romo: Romo balled this week, even tought TO dropped a 70 yard touchdown pass, and the Cowboys got upset by the Redskins in Washington. Romo tied Peyton for the 4th highest total by a QB, rolling 23 in the loss. A+

Laurence Maroney: LoMo didn’t do much, fantasy-wise, but it wasn’t his fault. With his 13 carries, he piled up 67 yards, and instead of just smashing Mo and Dillon into the Colts bad run defense, Bellichick and the Patriots apparently didn’t want to win, so they just kept on passing. Mo had 6 points… Warranting a D

Jerious Norwood: Jerious got 5 carries for 34 yards… That’s a 6.8 yard per carry average. Hey, Falcons, give this cat the damn ball. He’s been money when given more than 8 carries a game. He’s bound to break a run or two out of 10. Or you can keep feeding Dunn… D

Antonio Bryant: Antonio Bryant only had 2 catches in the Niner win over the suddenly horrendous Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. 24 yards just doesn’t get the job done. F!

Lee Evans: Lee only had 2 catches, but one went for a long touchdown and a game clincher at that, against the Packers. Evans needs about 15 touches a game, he’s the best thing the Bills have going. 11 points, not too bad, I’ll take a… B

Ben Watson: Last week everyone got the ball against Minnesota, but Reche was featured. This week, Ben Watson will be needed, his game breaking ability against a sub par defensive front, and hurting safeties. Watson is a match-up nightmare for the Colts, Bill Bellichick knows how to take advantage of things like that.

Jaguars DST: The Jags defense knows they have to step it up with their offense’s struggles. They’ll put the heat on Vince Young and the Titans rushing attack.


Ben Roethlisberger: BIG Ben had 433 yards passing, but his 3 interceptions killed his Steelers as Denver kept on rolling in Pittsburgh. Benny bounced to 17 fantasy points on the week, which was a Top 10 performance, but I’m not completely wrong here, as his 3 picks eliminated the defending champs from the playoffs this year.

Rudi Johnson: Rudi wants more carries? Well he got 18, and he did the best he could with them. Against Baltimore, this cat had 77 yards and a touchdown. WHAT was I thinking putting the league’s toughest guy on the Wussy list?

Hines Ward: Hines had a nice game, massive yards, 127, but a fumble late broke the Steelers’ back, and brought Ward’s totals down to 10 in Week 9.

Randy McMichael: Bears. Joey Harrington. 1-7…. You got anything else to throw on this fire?

Free Football Picks 06-07 Week 9

It’s back to what I know best. These teams are winning on Sunday. They’re coming out and smashing faces, crushing heads, and taking numbers for the second half. Speaking of second halves, this is the start of mine. After a very mediocre first 8 weeks of NFL Football, this is my beginning to a run to the playoffs.TOP 5 Bets – Ordered Numerically by LL himself;

1. Dallas over Washington
2. Atlanta over Detroit
3. Minnesota over San Francisco
4. Denver over the Steelers
5. Kansas City over St. Louis

Atlanta (-5) at Detroit: Riding Michael Vick’s rainbow ride might get me in trouble here, but even without Vick throwing for 4 touchdowns against the Lions, I still can’t see Atlanta winning by less than a touchdown. Ride Atlanta’s newfound offensive explosion as they play the Lions in Detroit, where offenses shine.

Cincinnati at Baltimore (-3): This is a tough game for me. I like what the Bengals can be and have been in the past, but I also like the Ravens toughness on defense. Because of Carson Palmers’ inability to throw the ball accurately when he’s under pressure, something I’m sure the Ravens will put on him, I have to take Baltimore. Watching the game last week against Atlanta, I saw Palmer let up a little on his stride when the pocket was hectic. Against Baltimore that means interceptions. Turnovers translate to wins.

Dallas (-3) at Washington: I just can’t see the Cowboys losing this game. Tony Romo already had a mistake filled half against New York, so don’t expect him to be thunderstruck again in the Nation’s Capitol. Washington is better than their record, but at some point you just have to admit, they can’t find ways to win ball games. The Cowboys have more talent all over the field, and unless a Santana Moss Miracle explodes in the 4th quarter, I don’t see the Redskins competing in this game, nor do I see Mark Brunell finishing the 2nd Half. Ride the Cowboys high, and throw eggs at Drew Bledsoe from above!

Green Bay at Buffalo (-3): Green Bay is playing way better than they are. That’s right, you heard me, this Packer winning streak is something that should never happen. Buffalo has played like a pile of feces lately, but they still have a tough defense and a running game that can take down Green Bay. JP Losman has to play well or he’ll get pulled for Kelly Holcomb, either way, the Bills will be in a good spot. Kelly has a knack for coming in and playing well in a crunch, and JP has the talent to produce. That being said, all the Bills need is decent quarterback play to upend the Packer winning streak. They’ll get it this weekend at home.

Houston at N.Y. Giants (-13): This game will be a huge test for David Carr, the Giants team, and Tiki Barber. Carr will get another chance, so his confidence will be tested. Will he drop back and throw the ball like a man? Or will he drop back and try not to get benched by making a mistake. I like Carr, so I hope he does well, but I have a feeling he might be trying not to make mistakes, something that doesn’t bode well for the Texans. As for the Giants, everyone and their mother knows New York has to win this game, because when you have a freebee, you have to take it. The Giants psyche will be tested here. Can they win the games they absolutely are supposed to? And Tiki. Yes, Tiki will get the rock, and maybe even the chance to saunder into the end zone at home. With all the Tiki talk frolicking about, it’ll be nice to see Tiki have his best game of the season on Sunday.

Kansas City (+3) at St. Louis: The Chiefs are starting to catch their stride as the Rams are losers of 2 straight. Neither team has much room for error here, and while I’d like to make it clear that the Chiefs are 1-3 away from home, I’m rolling with Damon Huard, and mostly, the Running Man, one Larry Johnson. Larry is back to the guy he was last season, and soon the Chiefs get last years’ starting tackle, John Winborn, back from injury. The Chiefs are starting to get comfortable with Herman Edwards, and since I believe the Chiefs are playoff bound, I have to take them to upset the Rams on the road.

Miami at Chicago (-13.5): To start with, let me tell you that the Dolphins have yet to lose a game by more than 11 points all season long. However, they haven’t played the Bears yet. As Chicago has streaked to an undefeated opening, once again they come up to the Dolphins treading water in their way. While Miami is historically a team that crushes undefeated hopes, this will not be one of those times. I’ve got to believe that the Bears won’t come out salty like they did in Arizona. No more, “take games for granted” out of these Bears. They are so much tougher than Miami, they should win by 4 touchdowns. But History and a mighty spread keep me wary of this one, keeping it out of my Top 5.

New Orleans at Tampa Bay (+1): Defensive football teams are a big time struggle for the Saints. Tampa Bay struggled last week against New York, but, defensively they were still very sound. Tampa Bay’s offense will play better, and this low scoring, close game will go to the home team.

Tennessee at Jacksonville (-9):

Minnesota (-6.5) at San Francisco: I know the Vikings just got manhandled by New England and one Tom Brady, but the 49ers aren’t New England, and Alex Smith is no Tom Brady. Minnesota will walk in this game. The Vikes haven’t lost in this match-up since 1998, and the last time San Francisco was within 6.5 points at the end of the game, besides their win over Oakland, was St. Louis in Week 2. This shouldn’t be a contest, as even Brad Johnson can throw against the Niner defensive backfield.

Cleveland Browns (+14) at San Diego: The Browns looked much better under Romeo Crenell’s new offensive mindset, and Charlie Frye won’t have to deal with Shawn Merriman, so I’m rolling with the Browns and two touchdowns. Cleveland has a talented team, and with a new approach on offense, Frye should be able to pass efficiently enough for Cleveland to give San Diego a scare on Sunday.

Denver (+3) at Pittsburgh: I don’t see the Steelers’ season turning around here. A week after getting Manning’ed by the Colts, Shanahan’s crew will bounce back in Pittsburgh. Mike Bell has the power to rush effectively against the Steelers, while Denver’s defense should get back on track against a struggling Ben Roethlisberger and a rushing attack that hasn’t impressed all season long. I hate to do it, but I’m taking Denver to roll the Steelers.

Indianapolis (+1) at New England: I’m going with the Colts here, but not because the Patriots are overrated, or bad, or anything of that sort. I’m going with Peyton Manning here because I know he can take advantage of the Patriots shortcomings on defense. This should be one hell of a game, but Peyton gets the nod, as he’s been amazing the last few weeks.

Oakland at Seattle (-8): Without Matt Hasselbeck, without Shaun Alexander, without God’s good graces, the Seahawks will still dominate the Raiders. Oakland comes in winners of their last two games, sure, but there is no way they get that lucky 3 times in a row. Their team is terrible, and the Hawks defense isn’t as bad as it has been lately. Expect a drumming in the 35-13 range on Monday Night.

Week 9 College Football Picks Review: 2006

Even Steven. My Best Bets didn’t pan out, and I wasn’t happy as I pushed my way up hill all day long. On the other hand, I made the best of a tough Saturday by picking 5 winners. To make a mediocre Saturday sunny, the USC Trojans were had by the Oregon State Beavers. 5-5…

Clemson Tigers (-4) @ Virginia Tech: LOSER! Clemson just took a huge poop in the bed. What they were afraid of is beyond me. Tech isn’t a very good ball club, but they sure had their way with the Tigers, and my pick, on Thursday Night Football.

Oklahoma Sooners (+2) @ Missouri Tigers: WINNER! The Sooners took it to the Tigers, just as I had suspected and planned. It was nice to get a big win early, after starting Thursday with a loss.

North Carolina State Wolfpack (E) @ Virginia Cavaliers: LOSER! NC State didn’t come to play. Watching this game made me sick a little bit. It’s just about impossible to predict which NC State team is going to come out on a nightly basis. This time I was on the wrong end of a Wolfpack loss.

Northern Illinois Huskies (+16.5) @ Iowa Hawkeyes: Northern Illinois was down early, but they did enough to cover, fighting back like they did. With a strong running game and a stout defense, NIU is in every game.

Northwestern Wildcats (+33) @ Michigan Wolverines: WINNER! The Wildcats were on track to pull the upset of the day. However, the Wolverines showed why they plan on going udefeated, stepping up toward the end and taking down Northwestern. But, NW scored plenty for me to pull out ahead, so I’m all smiles in this one.

Vanderbilt Commodores (-9) @ Duke Blue Devils: WINNER! Duke is a joke, and Vanderbilt just helped me point that out with a nice lopsided win on Saturday. I wonder what would happen if Mike Ditka played for the Commo’s in this one. They probably would have won 100 to 0. Crazy.

Bowling Green Falcons (-19) @ Temple Owls: LOSER! Temple collected their first win in the last 21 games. Nice work Bowling Green, make me look like a dumby and help the Owls snap a 20 game winless streak. It’s as if the Falcons were put on this earth to punish me for picking on hapless programs like the Owls. Who can root for a team named after the most useless sport we have anyway?

Illinois Fighting Illini (+22) @ Wisconsin Badgers: WINNER! The Illini almost clubbed themselves a furry badger on Saturday. Juice Williams (best name in college football) couldn’t complete many passes late as the Illini lost their chance to upset the Badgers in Wisconsin. I sure appreciated the effort though, as I came out with another win.

Wake Forest Demon Deacons (-8.5) @ North Carolina Tar Heels: LOSER! The Deacons had to pull out a lucky one late. It wasn’t Lucky enough though, as Good Ol’ Lucky hit the skids losing by a point and a half. This was a huge let down game for the Deacons, and I feel like a homer for letting that by me. It won’t happen again.

Miami Hurricanes @ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (-5): WINNER! The Hurricanes love to find a way to disappoint the bettors out their. This time, they didn’t get me. The Jackets pulled out a dandy late, as Miami found another way to lose on Saturday. Miami never gave themselves a shot to win the game, as they fumbled the punt return with under a minute left and the Jackets came out on top.

Nebraska Cornhuskers (-5.5) @ Oklahoma State Cowboys: LOSER! A let down by the Cornhuskers put me in a hole, as the Cowboys slapped me twice over the weekend. Once it was the youngsters on Saturday, and once it was those pros on Sunday Night, but I’ll get to that later.

2006 Fantasy Football Week 9 theRUNDOWN

This Week’s Top Team: I rolled past 140 riding the backs of the L’s (T&J) in Week 8, so make no mistake, I see 150 in my sites with decent performances from the rest of the crew.

QB: Peyton Manning: This should be quite a competition between the two guys that were battling it out for my top spot at the Q this week. But I have to take Peyton, if only because Tom Brady doesn’t have to win football games without a rushing attack. Peyton will hurl the piggy for over 300 yards on Sunday.

RB: Larry Johnson: It’d be idiotic if I went away from Larry this week, especially against one of the most generous run defenses in football. The Rams won’t have an answer for Larry, but they won’t be the first.

RB: LaDainian Tomlinson: While Julius Jones would be a decent pick here, walking away from LT would be just as ridiculous as leaving LJ on the bench this week. I’m trying to score as many fantasy points as possible, LT’s got to be on that list.

WR: Terrell Owens: The TO – Romo relationship is working just fine in the Big D. Dallas played well in the 2nd half of the Panther game last week, and they got a big win. This week, the Boys roll into Washington, where they often struggle, but TO will boost them right into victory.

WR: Marvin Harrison: After Reggie Wayne’s huge week 8, I’ll take his wideout mate, Marvin, in the match-up with the Patriots. This game will be seen everywhere, and Marvin always produces in these situations. Peyton will use Reggie as a decoy, and Marvin will roam freely amongst the Pat secondary.

TE: Algae Crumpler: Mike Vick finally learned to pass the rock with a little consistency, which makes the normally productive Crumpler even more attractive to the fantasy community. I’ll take Crumps against a Detroit defense that hasn’t stopped anyone since Week 1 of the season.

K: Jeff Wilkins: You betcha, Jeff didn’t do wonders for me last week, but I’ll ride my pale horse into battle against the friendly Kansas City defense. The Rams will drive early and often, giving Wilkins plenty of opportunity to get down to business.

D: Bears: The Bears are the best defense in football. This week they get to stone Miami. Should be fun to watch if you like that sick Mel Gibson stuff.


Rexxy Grossman: I’m tossing Rex in there as a sleeper because, well, he’s pretty much guaranteed to dismantle one of the worst secondaries in all of football. And last time he was supposed to do that, he had 6 turnovers. So that makes him a little bit of a sleeper, right?

Tony Romo: The Redskins defense is not good at all, which is really confusing, because they were really good last year and didn’t lose much. Crazy business. Anyway, Romo will have plenty of opportunity to slang the rock to his receivers in single coverage, because the Redskins will have to pay much attention to the Dallas run game which shreds opposing defenses.

Laurence Maroney: LoMo should have a big game against the Colts defense that can’t stop opposing offenses. Maroney has shown he’s one of the most explosive running backs in the league, and he should get his chance to shine in the spotlight, even if Dillon continues to get his touches. CD is a nice pick as a sleeper too, he’s run well all season long.

Jerious Norwood: Is it just me or do Laurence Maroney and Norwood live the same life? Maroney gets more touches, but both guys seem like future All Pros, both guys have tested All Pro Vets in front of them, yet both absolutely dominate in the limited carries that they get. Against Detroit, look for Norwood to break a couple biggies.

Antonio Bryant: I think the 49ers are in for trouble this week against the Vikings, but that won’t halt Bryant from a big game. The Patriots found holes in the Vikings defense that Coach Nolan will also attempt to locate. That should benefit Antonio.

Lee Evans: Lee could be a monster against the Packers. Green Bay will score, and if the Bills get down early, that means Evans will be the man that tries to carry them back. The Packers have been decent lately, against the pass, but Evans is a truly special young receiver. With a week off, the Bills must have found a way to get him the ball more.

Ben Watson: Last week everyone got the ball against Minnesota, but Reche was featured. This week, Ben Watson will be needed, his game breaking ability against a sub par defensive front, and hurting safeties. Watson is a match-up nightmare for the Colts, Bill Bellichick knows how to take advantage of things like that.

Jaguars DST: The Jags defense knows they have to step it up with their offense’s struggles. They’ll put the heat on Vince Young and the Titans rushing attack.


Ben Roethlisberger: The Broncos (after getting exposed by the Colts) aren’t what Ben needed to get back to his old self. A mistake against these pissed of Coloradoians could be bad news for Ben and the Steelers.

Rudi Johnson: Rudi wants more carries? I don’t know if he wants that this week. God knows it’s just going to smash his ypc average. The Ravens don’t joke around.

Hines Ward: Last time Hines saw this list, he had a career game. Just based on that I should find another guy to put here, but what do I look like? A chump? No, I’ll put whomever I think is going to struggle here. I love Hines, but matched up with Champ Bailey isn’t the best thing for 86.

Randy McMichael: Bears. Joey Harrington. 1-7…. You got anything else to throw on this fire?

Free NFL Picks 05-06 Week 9

A Layover with a HangoverHere I am, down under… way, way too far down under. Note to self, while spending hours and hours waiting for the next plane headed to the US because your original plane is being glued back together (not kidding), don’t buy $112 worth of drinks at Sydney International’s King’s Palace. Note number two; after suffering the effects of $112 worth of Sydney’s finest, both in the pocket and in the gut, don’t sit down at an airport internet bar to type an entire weeks worth of picks. After breaking every airport rule I know, besides the bowie knife in the sock trick, here are my NFL Week Nine Picks.

Lions (-1.5) @ Vikings – Who would have thought? The Green Bay Packers are last in a weak NFC North Division at 1-6… the Randy Mossless, and now Daunte Culpepperless, Minnesota Vikings are stuck at 2-5 and the Kyle Orton led Chicago Bears have bulldozed their way to a 4-3 record by taking down the Detroit Lions last week. Where does that leave the Lions? 3-4, second place. Look for the Vikings to play with their heads down now that their fearless leader is down and out. The Lions will take full advantage of the party-happy Vikings, having a touchdown party of their own on Sunday, led by Kevin Jones, who is still looking to match his breakout second half a year ago. Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Chargers (-6.5) @ Jets – The San Diego Chargers had a huge win against the Kansas City Chiefs last week. As good as the Chargers have been this year, they are still looking up at the playoffs with a 4-4 record halfway through the season. The Jets are lost, their season all but in the dumps, and the Chargers will take advantage of Herman Edwards’ squad in New York. The Chargers, despite their record, have one of the leagues best offensive attacks; they’ll showcase the stars of that unit, Keenan McCardell and Ladainian Tomlinson and Drew Brees, on Sunday. Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Titans (+3) @ Browns – The Titans took one on the chin at home last week to the Oakland Raiders. Look for them to turn the tides on the Browns this week, upsetting a very average or below average Cleveland squad. The Browns found a way to give the Texans a victory last week, they’ll manage to do the same for the 2-6 Titans. Chris Brown will be looking for 100 yards as Steve McNair will pick on a Brown secondary minue Gary Baxter, who is out for the year for the Browns. At least this will keep Cleveland in the Matt Leinart sweepstakes. Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Raiders @ Chiefs (-5) – The Raiders have won 3 of 4 after starting the season with 3 straight losses. I said they were the best winless team in football, they’re just now starting to prove me right. Unfortunately, the Chiefs won’t get caught shifting their entire defense towards Randy Moss like the Titans did. They’ll play a zone that will fool Kerry Collins into at least two costly picks, allowing Priest Holmes, Tony Gonzalez, and Trent Green to take advantage of easy scoring opportunities. Gonzalez will have his second big week in a row, and Holmes will team with Larry Johnson to outgun the Raiders.
Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Bears (-3) @ Saints – Kyle Orton is this year’s Ben Roethlisberger. His team’s not as solid as the Steelers were last year, but that won’t stop the Bears from pushing themselves through a weak North Division, and into the playoffs. The hapless Saints will continue their tumble toward a top pick in the draft. Look for Chicago’s star runner, Thomas Jones not Cedric Benson, to have a big day against the “River Runs Through It” defense of New Orleans. Aaron Brooks better do his best to keep the Saints out of the top spot in the draft, or Matt Leinart might be taking over his position as soon as next season.
Game Date: 11/06/05 16:05 ET

Bengals (-3) @ Ravens – The Bengals played down to the Packers level last week, but they’re still a much better team than the Ravens. Baltimore has been “playing hard” as Brian Billick has pleaded to the media… Well, it must be the coaching. Hint, hint. The Ravens will fall to 2-7 with a loss to the Bengals this week, look for Billick to be the leagues first coach to get axed. Yikes. I said it. He’s not getting the job done, and not even his defense has been able to find him victories. The Ravens need something to change.
Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Panthers (-1.5) @ Buccaneers- The Panthers are 5-2 and just won in dominating fashion against the Vikings in week 8. Look for Steve Smith to continue his MVP-Type season by out-dueling a very good Buc secondary. The Bucs should be absolutely disappointed with their Week 8 loss to the 49ers. I know I’m disappointed in them. Cadillac Williams needs to run like he did at the beginning of the year for the Bucs to have a chance. Can he do it against a banged up Panther front 7 who are without Kris Jenkins? That’s the question. Either way, Jake Delhomme and the Panther rushing attack will dive headfirst into Tampa Bay’s defense. This will be a big time game ending with a Panther W. Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Texans (+13) @ Jaguars – The Texans found a victory last week against Cleveland. Don’t ask me how they did it? It’s still beyond me. This week they’ll assuredly lose, so don’t get ballsy and take the Texans to win for big money. However, I’m betting the slow it down, drag it out Jaguars won’t win by more than 13, giving me a rare Texan victory. David Carr will continue to throw a limited amount of times, while Dominic Davis gets pounded into a Jaguar defensive front that gave up 174 yards to Steven Jackson last week. Ouch.
Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Falcons (-2) @ Dolphins – The Falcons should demolish the Dolphins of Miami. Amazingly to me, the Dolphins find themselves at just a game under .500 going into their 8th game. An even record of 4-4 is too much for me to swallow, as any team lead by Gus Frerotte doesn’t belong at .500. Ronnie Brown has begun to show why he was picked where he was, further distancing himself from Ricky Williams as the teams leading rusher. The Falcons will gang up on Brown, forcing Gus to beat them… he won’t. The Falcons should win big in Miami.
Game Date: 11/06/05 13:00 ET

Giants (-10.5) @ 49ers – The New York Football Giants gave it to the Washington Redskins hard in week 8. Eli Manning didn’t look dominant, but he didn’t need to as the Giant defense stepped up big and Tiki Barber ran like a man on a mission to dominate. Think “The Rock” in “Doom”. The 49ers just got their last win of the season, blowing my mind and yours, by taking the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 15-10. That’s it for them. No way in hell they beat the Giants.
Game Date: 11/06/05 16:05 ET

Seahawks (-4) @ Cardinals – The Seahawks got a much needed week off. Ken “The Hammer” Hamlin is out for the season after getting beat up outside of a Seattle Night Club. Look for the Seahawks to come out and play rough and tough like Ken, and beat the Cardinals in a big divisional game. Shaun Alexander should look like the Jamaican Bobsled team, having “Cool Runnings” all game long in Arizona. Matt Hasselbeck has been great for the Hawks, finally showing that he can lead his team to big victories. This will be another notch on the Hawks’ belt. Game Date: 11/06/05 16:05 ET

Colts @ Patriots (+3.5) – I can’t take the Colts until they finally beat the Patriots. Not even their undefeated record allows me to take them against New England. As my long-time readers know, the Patriots have been the bane of my existence one too many times. Until Manning shows me he can take advantage of a struggling Patriot defensive unit, I have to put my money on Tom Brady, Corey Dillon, and the rest of the Pats. Game Date: 11/07/05 21:05 ET

Steelers @ Packers – The Pittsburgh Steelers pulled out a big one on Monday Night against the falling Ravens. Baltimore came back in the 4th with 3 field goals, taking the lead, and seemingly ruining Pittsburgh’s night. Not to be outmatched, Big Ben took his team down for the winning field goal in the game’s final minutes. This week Big Ben, Hines Ward, Jerome Bettis and the rest of the Steel Crew will find it much easier as they take on Grandfather Brett in Green Bay. At 1-6 the Pack can only go up right? Wrong. Will 1-7 be the straw that breaks Favre’s back? Brett will tell you, “there is no last straw, there is only hay.” Think about that, as the Steelers thump the Packers in Lambeau. Game Date: 11/06/05 16:15 ET

Eagles (+2.5) @ Redskins – The Eagles will turn it up after getting embarrassed for the second time this year. The first ribbing came from the Dallas Cowboys, who the Eagles will get a chance to pay back in Week 10. The second came from the Bronco’s last week. I believe Washington showed their true colors when they got throttled by the Giants 36-0 last week. Don’t be surprised if the Eagles take down the Redskins in another laugher. Philadelphia is too good to dabble in mediocrity for too much longer. Game Date: 11/06/05 20:30 ET

Good Luck with your NFL Football Betting!
Lucky Lester – Free Football Picks