I’m too beaten down by the first quarter of the season to come up with a witty title this week. Followed up 9-7 with some more mediocrity at 8-8 so today I stand 23-38-3 which is all sorts of terrible. The two biggest culprits to my quest this year have been the Dolphins and Colts, like them I stand at 0-8 with their games because Miami’s offense has been worse than expected while Indy has done an admirable job of busting ass these last two weeks against good teams. The Packers would be 4-0 against the number but Cam Newton did what he does best and earned a backdoor cover late in their game (did the same thing last week against the Bears, Carolina might be the most enjoyable gambling team in the league) and now take to the road again looking to kick the Falcons while they’re down.

Falcons (+5.5) over the Packers: For a few reasons, one I thought this line was closer to 4 at the start of the week and was surprised to see where it’s at now, awfully high for a road game against what’s still not a terrible team. Also Atlanta in the dome should be fired up and ready to go for this one so while the Packers should still be able to move the ball I could see some offensive line penalties stalling drives and the secondary could still give up plays even to Matty Checkdown. Oh wait, just realized I said 31-21 yesterday, screw it: Packers (-5.5) at the Falcons

Colts (-1) over the Chiefs: FUN FACT – Did you know both these teams won their divisions in 2010? The NFL is a cruel bitch

Cardinals (+2.5) at the Vikings: FUN FACT – Did you know both these teams won their divisions in 2009? The NFL is a cruel bitch

Bills (+3) over the Eagles: The loss in the land of spaghetti chili was painful for Buffalo but you see that from time to time with teams not used to handling success. They had their two emotional comeback wins against Oakland and New England and went on the road to face a team that’s quietly sporting a salty defense. Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me why Philly would be favored on the road when they’re really not that good team unless you’re a fantasy football junkie who doesn’t care about line play. Fred Jackson should run all over them while Vick gets harassed enough to drop the birds to 1-4 while the Orchard Park faithful go crazy.

At no time during his game prep did this adult man feel like an idiot. Amazing what the NFL can provide people

Raiders (+6) at the Texans: Every year I cling too tightly to one team and it ends up killing me but heaven help me I think the Raiders wipe the blood from their mouths received last week and give Houston a fight. With all the rushing attempts we’re sure to see in this game (especially from the Texans now that Andre Johnson is out for a few weeks) expect the clock to keep moving which always plays well for the team getting nearly a touchdown. Houston still doesn’t inspire that much confidence since they should have blown the Steelers out last week and still had to gut out a win, the Silver and Black can keep this one close.

Panthers (+6) over the Saints: This is surely the pick most likely to make me look like an idiot when the Saints win 34-10 but we’ll just hope for another Cam Newton game that ends with a heroic last-minute drive to get a backdoor cover. That team isn’t even all that bad, they gave the Packers all they could handle and then really should have beaten the Bears if only Steve Smith hauls in that TD in the 3rd quarter which would have sparked panic dropback passing from Martz. Just try not to let Brees put up 50 on you fellas.

Bengals (+1) at the Jaguars: Ginger v. Gabbert, Jacksonville might have to tarp their entire stadium for this one.

Steelers (-3.5) over the Titans: This seems like stealing money, Tennessee has had a real nice and surprising start to their season but this is their first road game against a weakened but still strong Pittsburgh team. Even with James Harrison out (the irony being that he broke his orbital bone after being hit with an offensive lineman’s helmet, Goodell is still fining him $10K for the play) I want to see Hasselbeck continue his rebound year there before I fully buy in (his greatest motivation might come from wanting to beat Troy Polamalu who gets to do the shampoo commercials that have eluded him).

Giants (-9.5) over the Seahawks: Why hello there, game everyone is taking in their Survivor Pools this week (at least those who weren’t knocked out in Week 1 by the fucking Browns).

Buccaneers (+2.5) at the 49ers: I like the Under-41.5 much more in this game. I know people want to talk about Josh Freeman like he’s on the cusp of becoming one of the best QBs in the game but to watch the Bucs is to see a guy who generally flubs his way around the field for 3 quarters while his defense bails him out, he makes a drive or two late to win once the running game has battered the other team down (Blount is a beast if you haven’t seen them play) and then the narrative starts again (plus whenever I see him sans helmet I think of this). I fully expect to see the same this week in a 19-16 Tampa win.

Just let your SOOOOOUULLL GLLLLOOOOOOOO!!

Jets (+9) at the Patriots: Division games are rarely blowouts and if there’s one defense that’s the exact opposite of Baltimore’s in terms of production it’s the Boys of Belichick so again I’m taking an underdog I don’t expect to win but they could ugly up the game a decent amount and lose by a touchdown.

Chargers (-4) at the Broncos: The Chargers are 3-1, leading the AFC West but I’m not sure anyone would still consider them all that good. In other news, they’re playing Denver this week so who really gives a shit if they are?

Bears (+5) at the Lions: I know, I know, probably wishful thinking again but for all the talk about how the Detroit defensive line is going to destroy Cutler has anyone really watched one of their games? Their defense only seems to play well when the other team gets up 20 and starts altering the way they play. This just seems like it could become a Bear Game in that it’s not pleasant to watch, it seems like they’ve been dominated throughout the proceedings and yet the final score is 21-17. I was going to go Detroit since their sorry franchise is getting a MNF game for the first time in a decade but the lack of Hank Williams Jr. to usher in the action will sure put the crowd in a somber mood.