Wednesday, November 12, 2008

NFL Picks, Week 11

Bye weeks are history, and every team is playing every week from now until the end of the season. Here are 16 big ones:

Dallas at Washington: The Cowboys come off a much-needed bye week, but are thrown directly into the fire as they travel to D.C. to play the Redskins. Washington shocked the Cowboys in Irving in September. Dallas gets QB Tony Romo back from injury. Or, they hope so. Pick: Dallas

New England at New York Jets: The NFL Network gets a great matchup for Thursday night. Both teams are 6-3. This is where the Jets’ acquisition of Brett Favre pays off. Pick: Jets

New Orleans at Kansas City: Yuck. The Chiefs are improving, but don’t have anything to show for it in the win column, especially after losing a heartbreaker last week in San Diego. RB Larry Johnson returns this week after sitting out due to a plethora of personal issues. Chiefs get win #2 this week. Pick: KC

Philadelphia at Cincinnati: The Bengals are awful. Enough said. Pick: Philly

Baltimore at NY Giants: The Ravens will see how they stack up against a good team. The Giants keep rolling on. Pick: Giants

Minnesota at Tampa Bay: Both of these teams are bad on the road and good at home. The Bucs are at home. Pick: Tampa Bay

Chicago at Green Bay: Both teams are fighting for a playoff spot from the NFC North. This matchup is pretty even, so give the edge to the home team. Pick: Packers

Oakland at Miami: Senile owner Al Davis took play-calling responsibilities away from offensive coordinator Greg Knapp this week. Is Al going to call plays himself? Will the Raiders make the trip to South Florida? Pick: Miami

Detroit at Carolina: Daunte Culpepper makes his first start for the Lions. The Panthers are a good team. This might be ugly, but the Panthers will win. Pick: Carolina

Denver at Atlanta: Look out for the Falcons. They’re for real. Pick: Atlanta

Houston at Indianapolis: Last time these teams met, the Texans blew an 18 point lead in the last six minutes of the game. Indy is a lot better now. Pick: Colts

Arizona at Seattle: The Cardinals won a wild one on Monday night, and now travel to the Great Northwest. The Cardinals can’t let success go to their head. Pick: Arizona

St. Louis at San Francisco: The Suck Bowl. Both teams are bad. The Rams gave up 47 to the Jets last week, and it could have been worse. San Francisco should have won Monday night in Arizona. They win this week. Pick: 49ers

San Diego at Pittsburgh: The Chargers are underachieving in a big way. They now have to go to Pittsburgh, where the Steelers were upset last week by the Colts. Pittsburgh bounces back. Pick: Pittsburgh

Tennessee at Jacksonville: Titans roll on. Pick: Tennessee

Cleveland at Buffalo: Bragging rights to Erie, Pennsylvania are on the line here. Shoot, bragging rights to all of Lake Erie are on the line in this game. Pick: Buffalo

College Picks, Week 12

Last Week: 16-4
Season: 167-43

This week is a relative breather in college football, as we await the next titanic Big 12 South matchup between Oklahoma and Texas Tech. This week’s picks:

Texas at Kansas: The last time Texas visited Larryville, the Longhorns needed some last-minute heroics from Vince Young and some questionable officiating to win. After the game, KU coach Mark Mangino accused the Big 12 officials of conspiring to allow Texas to win in order to keep their national championship hopes and Big 12 payday alive. KU lost last week to Nebraska, and probably won’t be able to keep up with the Horns. Pick: UT

Oklahoma State at Colorado: Saturday Night Football moves this week to Boulder, where OSU will be looking to rebound from the butt-kicking they took last week in Lubbock. CU will be jacked for this one, but the Buffs aren’t as good as OSU. Pick: OSU

Nebraska at Kansas State: Two teams headed in opposite directions. The Huskers are trying to squeeze out a bowl bid in Bo Pelini’s first year. K-State is playing out the string as the Ron Prince era comes to an end. Pick: Nebraska

Texas A&M at Baylor: The Suck Bowl. The two Big 12 South teams that are unranked and headed nowhere. Both teams will be glad to play someone the other can beat. Pick: Baylor

Missouri at Iowa State: Missouri dominates the Big 12 North. Pick: Mizzou

Virginia Tech at Miami (Thursday): ESPN is showing some good games on Thursday nights. This is another one of them. Tech is coming around, evidenced by their convincing win over Maryland last week. Miami is no pushover, but VT is better. Pick: Tech

Cincinnati at Louisville (Friday): Winner gets a barge on the Ohio River. Cincinnati can win out and go to a BCS bowl. The Bearcats should be able to win this one against a rival on the road. Pick: Cincy

Notre Dame vs. Navy at Baltimore: Last year, Navy finally beat the Irish in triple overtime, winning this game for the first time since Roger Staubach was their quarterback. Can they make it two in a row? Yes. Pick: Navy

Ohio State at Illinois: The Buckeyes can still win the Big Ten, but they need some more help. Meanwhile, they should get revenge for last year’s loss in Columbus. Pick: TOSU

Georgia at Auburn: Yes, that was Auburn that was tied with Tennessee-Martin in the third quarter last week. The Tigers went on to beat UTM 37-20, but looked awful doing it. Georgia is trying to salvage a season in which they were ranked #1 in pre-season. Pick: Georgia

South Carolina at Florida: Steve Spurrier returns to the Swamp once again. The Gators, however, are on a mission in the second half of the season, and are destroying all comers. How did this team ever lose to Ole Miss? Pick: Gators

California at Oregon State: The Beavers are in control of their own destiny. All they need to do is win out, and they are going to Pasadena for the Rose Bowl. They win this one. Pick: OSU-West

Minnesota at Wisconsin: The Gophers are slipping back to becoming the same old Gophers, after winning 7 of their first 8 games. Wiscy has been injury-plagued and inconsistent. This one is in Madison, so go with the home team. Pick: Badgers

North Carolina at Maryland: The Tar Heels are one of the better teams in a balanced ACC. But, they’re not that much better than Maryland. The Terps come through at home. Fear the turtle. Pick: Maryland

Boston College at Florida State: In Massachusetts, BC is a well-respected university. In the South, BC is a headache powder. It’ll be a tough trip to Tallahassee for the Eagles. Pick: FSU

Vanderbilt at Kentucky: Two teams headed in opposite directions. Pick: Kentucky

BYU at Air Force: The two best teams in the Mountain West conference not named Utah or TCU. Pick: BYU

Northwestern at Michigan: Northwestern is having a better season than Michigan. But, this is in the Big House, and the Wolverines haven’t given up on the season just yet. Pick: Michigan

Tulsa at Houston: The Hurricane have been rolling through Conference USA. The Cougars should make it tough for Tulsa, but TU is playing too well this season. Pick: Tulsa

DePauw at Wabash: The 115th Battle for the Monon Bell. Both teams are good this year, but Wabash is undefeated and ranked #3 in the nation in Division III. Pick: Wabash