Last week was a solid 8-6 week, putting me at 32-26-4 on the year. Not spectacular, but good enough to feel better than Ted Thompson.
The standard disclosures apply: for recreational purposes only, lines from the NY Post, home teams in CAPS, etc.
This week the games are broken down by the different stops in Randy Moss’s career.
The Vikings (Part I) Phase
Randy’s first stint in Minnesota was full of ups and downs – setting rookie records for touchdowns and gently tapping a traffic cop with his car. These are the games that have potential to be good games despite having any real power teams involved. And obviously with Randy’s fake moon during this part of his career, there is no question the 49ers game has to be in this category because of Mike Singletary’s allegedly de-pantsing himself at halftime of a game last year.
BROWNS (+3) over Falcons
The Falcons are 3-1, yet without a Garrett Hartley shank and a Nate Clements brain fart, they’d be 1-3. They have not shown the offensive fire power that was expected of them. The Browns have battled to stay close in all of their games, and they may have found a stolen gem in Peyton Hillis. Mangini fights off the sharks for a second straight week.
RAIDERS (+6) over Chargers
San Diego has feasted on bad teams thus far, and they get another one in the Raiders. Yet something tells me the Raiders will finally show some progress, even with Michael Bush filling in for McFadden. Zach Miller should be able to run wild in the secondary against the Chargers linebackers.
49ERS (-3.5) over Eagles
Is Vegas disrespecting Kevin Kolb that much by making him and the Eagles a 3.5 point dog against the winless Niners? Probably. Is it deserved? Yup. Kolb has looked awful – timid, noodle-armed and overmatched in his limited playing time. Time for SF to get off the winless train at home against the punchless Iggles.
The Oakland Raiders Phase
Disinterested, lazy, distraction, non-factor, irrelevant. All words that can describe Moss’s time in Oakland and these games. Moss is second all-time in receiving TD’s (behind Jerry Rice) and imagine the stats he could have put up if he actually made an attempt to play hard or had an adequate quarterback during the years he wasted in Oakland.
Jaguars (-1) over BILLS
This might be the Bills best chance to avoid coming close to 0-16. Did I mention Ryan Fitzpatrick is the quarterback? It could be a classic letdown game for the Jags after their big win against the Colts, but they still have more playmakers with hyphens than the Bills.
PANTHERS (+2.5) over Bears
Is it really a question whether or not to bet against Todd Collins? The last time he started a game was in 2007, and he was old and washed up then. The Bears have won with smoke and mirrors thus far this season and the wind blew away the smoke and the mirror is one of those “fat mirrors” from the circus.
LIONS (-3) over Rams
The Rams are leading their division and still underdogs against a winless team. Such is life in the NFC West. Lions have been competitive all season and finally break through with a win.
Saints (-6.5) over CARDINALS
The Saints are a lifetime 87-5-1 when playing against a team that cut a former first round quarterback before the season, benched their awful backup, and are starting an undrafted rookie in his first start. That seems like a made up stat that I don’t want to go against.
The Patriots Phase
The resurgent Randy reappears and starts setting records again. Suddenly the locker room cancer that got run out of Minnesota and mercifully traded from Oakland was a great teammate, consummate professional and a key cog on successful teams. Yet that dream didn’t last.
TEXANS (-3) over Giants
Which Giants team will show up? The one that hammered the Panthers? The one that got hammered by the Colts? Or the suffocating defense that destroyed Jay Cutler? Will it be the Texans team that tamed the Colts? Or the team that had to scramble to come from behind against the Redskins? Or the team that got ripped up by the Cowboys? I guess I’ll side with the home team.
Chiefs (+8) over COLTS
Am I really going against a ticked off Colts team at home against a potentially fraudulent 3-0 young Chiefs team? Yup, 8 points is too much for a team that can’t stop the run against a team that has a potent running attack with Thomas Jones & Jamaal Charles.
Vikings (+4) over JETS
While there is no doubt that Tom Brady throws a better deep ball than Brett Favre, and Moss is not as adept at the jump ball as he once was, Randy will still make a difference and be an outlet for the wiener-sexting old gunslinger. There is the possibility that Moss catches 2 TDs and Favre throws 4 interceptions in every game. The inspiration of thir new acquisition will be enough to overcome the loud-talking Jets on Monday night.
The Minnesota (Part II) Phase
This is either going to be boom or bust. It’s either going to be like Marisa Miller or it’s going to be current Madonna. There will be no in between. These games could be gems like the Halladay no-hitter or the Lincecum 2-hitter (which by the way, I might argue that Big Time Timmy Jam’s game was more impressive as it came in a 1-0 game and he had 14 K’s – a MLB postseason debut record) Or these games could end up a complete disaster, like a James Shields start for the Rays.
BENGALS (-6.5) over Buccaneers
This seems like quite a bit of points to lay against a 2-1 team coming off a bye week by a team that just lost to the Browns. Yet the Bengals play much better at home and the 2-1 team is the Bucs. Case closed.
Packers (-2.5) over REDSKINS
This is my least confident pick of the week. The Packers lost another safety and linebacker Nick Barnett to season-ending injuries this week. Add that to the emotional let down of not picking up a key running back and knowing they have the least intimidating running game in the league. Yet the Redskins do not have the playmakers to take advantage of the huge holes that will be in the Dom Capers defense.
RAVENS (-7) over Broncos
Baltimore’s offense seems to be finding a little bit of rhythm and it will be much easier against the Broncos than it was against the Steelers. The Broncos definitely won the Cutler-Orton trade, but they won’t win in Baltimore.
COWBOYS (-6.5) over Titans
Tennessee continues to struggle establishing the run and they don’t have a legit passing game to fall back on. As a result, the Cowboys can get back to .500 and right back in the hunt to win their extremely average division. After the game, Jeff Fisher might put on a Tony Romo jersey, since if the Cowboys falter this year, Wade Phillips will be fired and Jeff Fisher will be the top target for Jerry Jones.