Had a good week last week, 2-1 with my primary picks and 1-1 with my wild cards. Even though Baltimore beat Pittsburgh, proving Swag right in our week long debate, I'm still feeling pretty good. Unfortunately, I don't feel nearly as good this week as I did about a bunch of games last week. But, let's do it:
Buffalo +5.5 @ DALLAS
Both of these teams have been somewhat up and down this year. There are a few circumstances that cause me to like Buffalo in this match up. First, Miles Austin is out. Tony Romo is completely unreliable, and without his most reliable receiver, Dallas is going to need to rely on rookie RB Murray to carry the offensive load. Murray has looked great so far, and he looks to have a bright future in the NFL, but he isn't going to average 8 YAC all year. He is bound to have a down game. That combined with the fact that the Bills need to win to stay in the playoff race while Dallas is weirdly sitting in second place in a struggling NFC East, the urgency for the Bills to win this game stands to be higher. That's not to say Dallas won't win, but I think the spread is too high. This game comes down to 3 or 4 points.
New Orleans PK @ ATLANTA
I am convinced Atlanta is highly overrated. Frankly, I'm not sure how they ever beat good teams. No aspect of Matt Ryan's game impresses me. Julio Jones is playing hurt, and even in his ridiculous game last week he only had 3 receptions. 80 YAC touch downs are impressive but also involve a whole lot of luck. Michael Turner is a workhorse, but this is about the time in the season when he starts wearing down. The Saints are an offensive power house, with Atlanta's below average pass defense he should be able to torch them. Atlanta plays well at home, but not well enough to beat a team that is, in my mind, noticeably better.
CHICAGO -2.5 vs Detroit
Chicago has been playing well. Detroit hasn't. Maurice Morris has not impressed me, and the Detroit offense without Best hasn't either. Bears have been looking better. I feel like every player on the Bears hates Jay Cutler, but college teamate Earl Bennet may be the exception to that rule. Maybe he was more likeable in college. They seemed to have a good chemistry last week. Matt Forte has been a machine all year and Marion Barber has proven to be an impressive goal line weapon (4 TDs in 5 games, Forte only has 3 all year). Both teams are going to come out fired up for this game, but right now I think the Bears are playing better football.
Record (as compiled by Swag covering non posted picks we had made over weeks past): 8-7