Sunday, October 18, 2009

I Take the Saints Over the Giants

The big game this week features the New York Giants against the New Orleans Saints.

It ought to be an entertaining game — two undefeated teams and New Orleans native Eli Manning making his first professional appearance in his hometown.

And, if my predictions hold up, the winner will be the only undefeated team that is playing today that will still be unbeaten when the final whistle blows.
  • St. Louis (0–5) at Jacksonville (2–3) — Even the Jags should be able to beat the Rams.

  • Carolina (1–3) at Tampa Bay (0–5) — The cellar dwellers of the NFC South meet in Tampa today. The Bucs have been more productive, but their defense has given up more points than the Panthers. I'm going to predict that Tampa Bay will be in the win column before the day is over.

  • New York Giants (5–0) at New Orleans (4–0) — The offensive stars get all the reviews. Am I crazy to think the defenses might be the standouts in this game today? Maybe. But I'lll pick New Orleans.

  • Cleveland (1–4) at Pittsburgh (3–2) — The Steelers are still in the AFC North race, but they're running neck and neck with Baltimore and they trail the unlikely Cincinnati Bengals. There once was a time when Browns–Steelers games were highly anticipated events, but, these days, I don't think the Browns have what it takes to make this game competitive. Steelers should pull away in the second half.

  • Detroit (1–4) at Green Bay (2–2) — Just what the doctor ordered for a Packer team whose last game was a disappointing loss to Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings. Green Bay will win at home.

  • Baltimore (3–2) at Minnesota (5–0) — I'm sure this flies in the face of conventional wisdom, but I'm picking Baltimore to knock Minnesota from the ranks of the unbeaten.

  • Houston (2–3) at Cincinnati (4–1) — I remain unconvinced that Cincinnati is as good as its record suggests, but I don't feel Houston is capable of defeating the Bengals. Thus, I expect Cincy to be 5–1 when the day is done.

  • Kansas City (0–5) at Washington (2–3) — The Redskins haven't impressed me this season, but, after all, they're at home today and they're playing the pitiful Chiefs. I have to take Washington.

  • Arizona (2–2) at Seattle (2–3) — Well, I guess somebody has to win this game. I'll go with Seattle.

  • Philadelphia (3–1) at Oakland (1–4) — Philly is favored by two touchdowns and with good reason. I have to take the Eagles in this game.

  • Buffalo (1–4) at New York Jets (3–2) — Back at home now after losing on Monday night in Miami, I expect the Jets to handle the Bills.

  • Tennessee (0–5) at New England (3–2) — The Titans left Nashville, where it will be a cool but tolerable 57° with sunny skies and a light breeze today, to play New England in Foxboro, Mass., where it will be cold (around 45°), windy and rainy. Along with the facts that the Titans are winless and they're facing a pretty good Patriots team, I expect New England to prevail.

  • Chicago (3–1) at Atlanta (3–1) — The Falcons are favored by 3½ points, presumably because they are playing at home. Both teams appear to have emerging quarterbacks. I'll take the home team.
  • Denver (5–0) at San Diego (2–2) — I don't think the Broncos are as good as their record indicates. The oddsmakers apparently agree with me. They've made the Chargers four–point favorites. I'll take San Diego.
Last week: 8–6.

Season: 57–19.

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