Home team in caps:
HOUSTON (-5 ½) over Miami
As I said in Long Snaps this week, this is a must-win game for Houston. The Texans can’t blow this game and they know it. I don’t feel good about taking them to win by more than 5, but what the hell; I’m a risk taker.
Texans 24 – Dolphins 17
NEW ORLEANS (-3) over Carolina
Is David Carr starting for the Panthers? Yes? That’s enough for me.
Saints 23 – Panthers 17
Jacksonville (-2 ½) over KANSAS CITY
Taking a road favorite is risky business, especially when that team is the Jags. But I can’t fathom a world where the 2007 Kansas Chiefs win three games in a row.
Jaguars 17 – Chiefs 14
WASHINGTON (-3 ½) over Detroit
I also can’t fathom a world where the Lions are 4-1.
Redskins 27 – Lions 20
TENNESSEE (-8) over Atlanta
I hate picking all favorites. It’s a recipe for disaster. But you know what I hate even more? Taking Joey Harrington on the road in Vince’s house. No thanks.
Titans 27 – Falcons 17
PITTSBURGH (-6) over Seattle
This one should play out much like Super Bowl XL: boring and with Pittsburgh victorious in the end.
Steelers 20 - Seahawks 13
NEW ENGLAND (-16 ½) over Cleveland
How good are the Pats? Despite giving away a boatload of points, I never even considered taking Cleveland. Not for a second.
Patriots 41 – Browns 10
ST. LOUIS (+3 ½) over Arizona
I know, I know. I’m crazy. St. Louis is definitely the worst team in the league. Arizona is much-improved and thinking playoffs. I agree with all of that. But this game just feels like a trap, so I’m throwing logic out the window and caution to the wind.
Rams 20 – Cardinals 17
New York Jets (+3 ½) over NEW YORK GIANTS
Both of these teams feel like 2-3 clubs to me. If the Jets win, that’s exactly what they’ll be.
Jets 27 – Giants 24
INDIANAPOLIS (-10) over Tampa Bay
Maybe the Bucs are the 2007 sleeper team. But this Sunday’s game will be nothing but a nightmare.
Colts 27 – Buccaneers 13
San Diego (+1) over DENVER
Norv Turner is quite the enigma, isn’t he? How can someone be such a great offensive coordinator and such an atrocious head coach? I don’t have the answer, but I do know this will be the last time I pick the Chargers all year if he doesn’t deliver the goods this week.
Chargers 23 – Broncos 20
SAN FRANCISCO (3 ½) over Baltimore
Both of these teams annoy me for some reason. Perhaps it’s because they were both overrated coming into the year. Or perhaps it’s because Frank Gore and Willis McGahee are killing my fantasy football team.
Ravens 20 – 49ers 19
GREEN BAY (-3 ½) over Chicago
The Brett Favre lovefest continues. And the Chicago Bears’ season unofficially ends.
Packers 24 – Bears 16
Dallas (-10) over BUFFALO
Unfortunately, the Cowboys are on their way to a 5-0 record. On the bright side, their perfect season will end next week when the Pats drop the hammer on the Big D.
Cowboys 37 – Bills 13
Last week against the spread: 8-6 (31-26-5 in ’07)
Last week straight-up: 5-9 (33-29 in ’07)
-- Jason Friedman