Week 11 of the NFL season has arrived, and the wear and tear of the season is beginning to show. Quarterbacks, in particular are feeling the erosion of health as Ben Roethlisberger, Jay Cutler, Michael Vick and Alex Smith are all suffering injuries. Let us hope the MASH unit doesn’t grow this week. Here are the picks.
Green Bay at Detroit
The Packers have been generating momentum over the last few games, and are hoping a bye last week, doesn’t curb that momentum. The Lions lost to Minnesota last week, and are in danger of becoming irrelevant in the NFC North. This is a must win for my Lions, but the Packers have won 12 out of the last 13 games against the Lions. Even with Clay Matthews out of the lineup, Green Bay wins.
Arizona at Atlanta
The Falcons are undefeated no more, after losing to New Orleans last week. The Cardinals have struggled mightily, after a strong start, losing their last 5 games. The Falcons are angry and will take out their frustrations on a hurting Arizona side. Atlanta wins.
Jacksonville at Houston
Plain and simple. This one will be a slaughter. Houston wins.
New York Jets at St Louis
The Jets soap opera continues, as anonymous players have gone to the media to trash Tim Tebow. This team is more dysfunctional than the cast of Jersey Shore. The Rams aren’t a powerhouse, but at least they have their heads screwed on straight. Good enough for me. St Louis wins.
Philadelphia at Washington
The Eagles will give rookie quarterback Nick Foles is first NFL start on Sunday, after Michael Vick suffered a concussion last week, and isn’t ready to play. It may not matter. Andy Reid is still the coach, and he will screw the game up somehow. The Redskins have been in a funk lately, but a game against the Eagles is a good tonic. Washington wins.
Cincinnati at Kansas City
The Bengals are coming off their biggest win of the season, as they thrashed the New York Giants last week. Coach Marvin Lewis is hoping that his squad can use that game, to jumpstart their playoff push. The Chiefs nearly upset the Steelers last week, but found another way to lose. Might be closer than some expect. Cincinnati wins.
Cleveland at Dallas
Don’t look now, but the Cowboys are only a game back of first place in the NFC East. Dallas scored a big win over Philadelphia last week, and now are entertaining thoughts of top spot in the division. The Browns are improving, but have much work to do. Too much in this one. Dallas wins.
Tampa Bay at Carolina
The Bucs are on a roll, winning three out of their last four games. The Panthers have won just once in their last six, and no one knows what type of mood Cam Newton will be in. Meanwhile, rookie running back Doug Martin has given Tampa Bay new life. Tampa Bay wins.
New Orleans at Oakland
The Saints are coming off a huge win over Atlanta, and are creeping back into the wildcard chase in the NFC. The Raiders were throttled by Baltimore last week, and with Darren McFadden out of the lineup, things look bleak in the Black Hole. New Orleans wins.
Indianapolis at New England
Very intriguing game in Foxboro. The Colts have been one of the biggest surprise teams in the NFL, as they are right in the thick of the AFC wildcard chase, after going 2-14 last year. Andrew Luck is well on his way to becoming a superstar, and a win over the Patriots will elevate his status. The Patriots are in control of the AFC East but have issues on the defensive side of the football. That being said, I don’t think Luck and company are quite ready to topple the Pats. New England wins.
San Diego at Denver
The Broncos are on a tear, winning their last 4 games, and looking mighty impressive during this streak. Peyton Manning has found his groove in the Mile High City, and the Broncos have become Super Bowl contenders. The Chargers, on the other hand have lost 4 out of their last 5 games, and quickly fading from the picture in the AFC West. Norv Turner is on the hot seat in San Diego, and the temperature will be turned up even higher, after this one. Denver wins.
Baltimore at Pittsburgh
Injuries dominate the headlines in this heated encounter. The Steelers won’t have quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in the lineup, as he is sidelined with a sprained shoulder and a partially torn rib. Byron Leftwich will get the start at quarterback this week, and he will have to deal with a Ravens defence that is still formidable, despite not having Ray Lewis and Lardarius Webb in the lineup. The Ravens did pound Oakland last week, but they have shown flaws on their once great defence. However I don’t trust Leftwich against the Ravens. Baltimore wins.
Chicago at San Francisco
Another big game where injuries are the story. The Bears won’t have Jay Cutler behind centre, as he suffers from a concussion. Jason Campbell will make his first start of the season for the Bears, and he has something to prove, after being let go by Washington. For the 49ers, Alex Smith is listed as questionable, as he battles a concussion as well. If Smith can’t go, Colin Kaepernick will get the call behind centre for San Francisco. The Bears are noted for a great defence, but have struggled against the run in recent weeks, giving up over 100 yards on the ground in their last 3 games. Watch for Frank Gore to be a key in the San Francisco attack. San Francisco wins.
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