There’s a game on the schedule this week that epitomizes casual betting vs. professional gambling. I have to give a little nod to Big Dub here, because he’s been looking toward this game since August, but this line will just jump off the page at anyone who has ever laid down a couple of dollars. The Eagles are hosting the Colts. The Colts, coming off a shredding of the Texans, come into face an Eagles team that was last seen getting lit up by Kerry Collins.
Of course, there are other factors in play here. Michael Vick and DeSean Jackson are returning. The Eagles are coming of a bye-week, which has been an automatic win in the Andy Reid era, and they are at home. But, I don’t know many people who at first glance would pick the Eagles in this game. That said, they are 3 point favorites. If you believe in reading lines, you have to bet the Birds this week. If you are the kind of person that sees the Colts getting points and sprints to the window? Well, plan on having plenty of company. I think Vegas is either going to crush or get crushed on this one.
Upset Watch of the Week:
Beware the Lions. Here’s another line that is a little funny for me. The Lions only getting 4 points against the team many thought was the class of the league just a week ago? Did the shutout loss to the Packers hurt the Jets that much? This doesn’t look like a great match-up for the Lions who give up a lot of points, but could struggle to keep pace against the Jets’ defense. The biggest conclusion to draw here is that Mark Sanchez is just simply not that good. If teams start focusing on shutting down the Jets’ running game, can Sanchez do anything to make them pay? The Jets should be awake after losing last week, but heading into Detroit looks a little dangerous to me.
The Road Warriors March On:
Oddest season so far this year? I’d probably have to give it to Miami. Their opening 10 games were and will be brutal. They’ve had New England, Green Bay, Pittsburgh, and the Jets. They are 4-0 on the road. They are 0-3 at home, but those losses are perhaps to the 3 best teams in the AFC (Pittsburgh, New England and New York). The schedule won’t let up for a couple of weeks. The Dolphins have to travel to Baltimore this weekend. They follow that up with the Titans at home. The rest of the slate still includes trips to NE, NY and Oakland. Miami is playing one of the toughest schedules in the league, but if they can beat Baltimore on Sunday, they’ll solidify themselves as a playoff team in the AFC.
International Stink Bomb of the Week:
Last week the NFL treated the British to a Broncos/Niners game. It had all the drama of Super Bowl 24. This week we get a shorter trip as Buffalo plays a “home” game in Toronto. The Bills have taken a season’s worth of shots to the gut, and their 0-7 record reflects that. It might be a cruel twist that one of their more winnable games comes across the border against Chicago. Weeks ago we said wait on Chicago, they’ll prove they aren’t any good soon enough. This week would clinch it. It’s a great spot for Buffalo to get off the donut. They just need to get out of their own way.
Last Chance Chargers:
I read an odd stat this week. The Chargers lead the league in yards gained and yards allowed. They are statistically the best offense and best defense in the league. Somehow that has added up to a 3-5 record. Phillip Rivers is becoming a fantasy football god this year, on pace to break Dan Marino’s yardage record while throwing to Antonio Gates and a mess of unknowns. San Diego plays the Texans this week, one of several teams ahead of them in the AFC playoff race. The Texans have plenty of holes of their own, but it’s the Chargers this week that need to decide if they are going to be a factor in the AFC or just a couple of fantasy darlings.
- DA/Max Hall
- Matt Moore
- Colt McCoy
- Chad Henne
- Matt Cassell
- Matt Stafford