Sep 16, 2012; Foxborough, MA, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb (4) hands off the ball to running back Beanie Wells (26) as they take on the New England Patriots during the second half at Gillette Stadium. The Arizona Cardinals defeated the New England Patriots 20-18. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-US PRESSWIRE

NFL Week 3: Predictions


Sep 16, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson (33) flips into the end zone for a touchdown in the second quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US Presswire

For the second time in 3 weeks, I start in the hole 0-1. Although I’ve been travelling and didn’t post, I had the Panthers winning at home in a squeaker. I’m honest, so even though I didn’t post it, I’m manning up for it. Still, I’m 23-9 through 2 weeks.

I understand Ron Rivera phoned Tom Coughlin and apologized for the fact that his team was unable to attend the game Thursday night.

Okay…well, we’ve got a bunch more games to come. Let’s see what trouble I can stir up here:

St. Louis at Chicago: Tough one to call here. I’ve been saying the entire time that the Rams aren’t nearly as bad as the preseason banter would indicate. The Bears aren’t as good as they played week one and are more like the week 2 version. The Rams matchup well against DAAAAAA Bearsssss very nicely – they have a good defensive line and a couple of good corners. Cutler will be under duress, and almost can pull off the win at home. Almost. Rams by 2

Buffalo at Cleveland: Another tough call. Buffalo won on C.J. Spiller’s career day last week against the Chiefs, but the Chiefs are notoriously slow starters and the road team last week. This week, Buffalo is on the road and the Browns’ defense is much more stout than that of the Chiefs. Brandon Weeden looked a lot better last week, and against a pretty good Cincy D. Buffalo spent the money but their defense hasn’t really improved much. Browns by 7

Tampa Bay at Dallas: Two pretty darned good 1-1 teams clash. The Bucs lost on a furious comeback by Eli Manning and the Cowboys lost at Seattle – the Black Hole of Calcutta for many road teams. I don’t see the young Bucs going in and winning in Jerry Jones’ house, and this game is a nice “Eliminator” pick. Cowboys by 13

Jacksonville at Indianapolis: Two pretty awful teams clash in this one. Gabbert’s injury may or may not actually help the Jags, and MJD should be getting up to speed. Luck is looking good himself and Indy is making some progress but both these teams have a looooong way to go. Hard to win on the road in today’s NFL. Colts by 4

New York Jets at Miami: Losing at Pittsburgh isn’t exactly a horrible thing…I mean, everybody does it. The ‘Fins got their first win over a bad Oakland team and Oakland always plays bad in Miami anyway so that tells us nothing. The Jets defense is simply too much for the young Dolphins’ offense to do much damage to. Jets by 17

San Francisco at Minnesota: Another “Eliminator” total gimme game. NO WAY can Minnesota win this one. Niners by 20

Kansas City at New Orleans: Here’s a rather unlikely “Eliminator” challenge steal-type game. The Saints are 0-2, fighting mad, and playing at home against a defense that has little hope of slowing Drew Brees down. The Saints are playing like a .500 team…but the issue is that the Chiefs are playing like a .000 team. Saints by 17

Detroit at Tennessee: The Titans actually might find some offense one of these weeks…but not this week. This might be a nice “steal” game to pick Detroit for those playing the Eliminator. Lions by 21

Cincinnati at Washington: This game should be one of the more interesting games to watch this week. The Bengals haven’t beaten a winning team in the short Andy Dalton era, but the Skins are 1-1. Washington is the fashionable pick, but I think due to some injuries on the Washington defense and some extra effort from Cincy, this could be one of “those” games this week. Bengals by 3

Philadelphia at Arizona: Philly has a lot of issues, but so far this season losing isn’t one of them. Arizona looks like the unlikliest “Cinderella” team in the NFL after a bizarre 2-point win at Foxborough last week. Arizona’s defense IS the real deal though, and Vick & company have been turning the ball over at an alarming rate. Cardinals by 6

Atlanta at San Diego: This contest should tell us a lot more about the Chargers than it will the Falcons. We know the Falcons are good. Falcons by 5

Houston at Denver: Houston had two easy teams to start the slate while the Broncos played the Steelers and the Falcons. I like Denver at home here. Broncos by 4

Pittsburgh at Oakland: While Pittsburgh might be on the downward slope of their peak so far under Mike Tomlin, they haven’t slid that far…even with injuries. Oakland doesn’t match up with them, home or not. Steelers by 21

New England at Baltimore: The Pats are similar to the Steelers in that they seem to have slid back a bit. Their offensive line has been pretty bad and Baltimore is actually the one with the firepower on offense this year. Ravens by 4

Green Bay at Seattle: The Monday night game here is one you need to watch. Perhaps it’ll shed some light on why an otherwise-average team like Seattle is so hard to defeat if they play at home. Seattle has the “D” but not the “O” to keep up with the Packers. Packers by 16

Best bets for “Eliminator” Challenge:
New York Jets over Miami
San Francisco over Minnesota
Detroit over Tennessee (a “steal” game)
Pittsburgh over Oakland

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