NFL Picks: Patriots are running short on playmakersPublished 8:35am Thursday, September 12, 2013
Here are the picks:
N.Y. Jets at New England
The Patriots went into the season without that much firepower and things got worse for them after week one. They lost running back Shane Vereen until week 11 and the ever fragile Danny Amendola injured himself while simply running a route against the Bills.
Tom Brady is in for a frustrating season, but he’s still good enough to keep this team competitive.
The Jets are coming off a high as they beat the Bucs on a last second field goal, but I fear they may be a little overconfident.
PATRIOTS 21, JETS 10
Washington at Green Bay
When I watched the first half of the Redskins against the Eagles, I thought Robert Griffin III looked more like Tim Tebow than himself. Then the second half came and he looked like the dynamic player he was last year.
The Redskins even protected Griffin by not giving him very many carries. He could be in for a big year.
As for the Packers, they may have lost to the 49ers, but wide receiver Jordy Nelson looks to be back in 2010 form when he was Aaron Rodgers’ primary target and Eddie Lacy looked strong in the second half.
If Green Bay can get its defense together, which is a huge if, it could be back in Super Bowl contention by the end of the season.
PACKERS 31, REDSKINS 30
St. Louis at Atlanta
The Falcons’ offense got off to a slow start against a Saints’ defense that was atrocious last season and the Rams pulled off an emotional win over the Cardinals.
I don’t see the Falcons dropping their home opener.
FALCONS 34, RAMS 17
Carolina at Buffalo
The Bills had their chances against New England last week, but I don’t think they’re quite there yet. Quarterback E.J. Manuel still has some growing up to do and CJ Spiller didn’t look like the dominant back he was last season.
The Panthers need to win games like this one if they want to compete in the NFC this season.
PANTHERS 21, BILLS 13
Minnesota at Chicago
It’s a match made in heaven. The Chicago Bears love to force turnovers and Christian Ponder is more than willing to turn the ball over.
Minnesota has a shot if Adrian Peterson can run for 200 yards, but that isn’t too likely after the Lions held him to 15 yards on his last 17 carries last Sunday.
BEARS 24, VIKINGS 21
Miami at Indianapolis
Andrew Luck will continue to get better with every game he plays.
COLTS 27, DOLPHINS 17
Dallas at Kansas City
It’s a classic trap game for the Cowboys. They won ugly against a Giants team that had no running game and couldn’t hang on to the ball and now they’re playing a team that won two games last year.
The Chiefs didn’t exactly light the world on fire last week in a 28-2 win over Jacksonville, but they will improve as they adjust to Andy Reid’s system.
CHIEFS 31, COWBOYS 27
San Diego at Philadelphia
The Eagles fast break offense made a football game look like a basketball game last week. It will continue to be effective as long as Michael Vick stays healthy.
Unfortunately for Philly, Vick is not a big guy and he took some big hits in the opener. If he keeps taking those hits, he will not be on the field for much longer.
EAGLES 37, CHARGERS 21
Cleveland at Baltimore
The Ravens didn’t play that bad against the Broncos. In fact, if Michael Oher and Jacoby Jones didn’t get injured, they may have hung on. The Ravens aren’t as deep as they used to be and they simply can’t afford injuries to their starters.
RAVENS 27, BROWNS 14
Tennessee at Houston
I still can’t believe the Titans beat the Steelers. I don’t know if the Titans are tough or if Pittsburgh is just that bad this year.
I guess we’ll find out.
TEXANS 19, TITANS 10
Detroit at Arizona
I feel I can’t say anything about the Lions besides the fact that Ndamukong Suh needs to clean up his act. This is his fourth year in the NFL, and he’s still taking cheap shots and drawing fines.
He has the potential to be one of the best defensive players in the game, but he needs to tone down on the late hits and cheap hits.
LIONS 28, CARDINALS 17
New Orleans at Tampa Bay
I thought the Bucs had sleeper potential, but they fizzled out against the Jets. That’s not a good sign.
SAINTS 41, BUCS 14
Jacksonville at Oakland
The Terrelle Pryor experiment was actually somewhat successful in week one.
RAIDERS 14, JAGUARS 10
Denver at New York Giants
The Giants are coming off a horrendous performance in which they almost won. If they can get any semblance of a running game, I give them a chance.
In Denver, Peyton Manning has the best receiving core he’s had in his career and he knows how to use them.
BRONCOS 37, GIANTS 27
San Francisco at Seattle
Something happens to the Seahawks when they play at home. They hit harder, they play smarter and they also get phantom TDs on interceptions in the end zone. Never mind, that was the replacement refs that did that, not Seattle.
Sorry if this Packer fan is still a little a bitter over the ‘Fail Mary.’ It only cost Green Bay the No. 2 seed in the NFC playoffs.
SEAHAWKS 20, 49ERS 17
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati
I knew things were headed in a bad direction for the Steelers when they lost to the Titans and they lost center Maurkice Pouncey and linebacker Larry Foote for the season.
I found things were even worse when I saw Pouncey was injured by his own teammate chop blocking him from behind while he was blocking a Jagaurs’ defender.
If that’s not a bad omen, I don’t know what is.
BENGALS 23, STEELERS 10
Last week: 10-6; overall: 10-6