13-Year veteran malcontent, Randy Moss, was dealt from New England to Minnesota this week. Get past it already! As the Patriots, Steelers, Dolphins, and Seahawks enter a bye week, the slate is full. Carolina, Buffalo, Detroit and San Francisco attempt to get off the mat, Kansas City remains undefeated headed to Indianapolis, and we finish the week off with the re-introduction of Randy Moss in Minnesota, albeit against the 3-1 Jets on Monday night. Coming off an 11-3 Week 4, I'm playing with house money . . .
Get After It!
Last Week: 11-3-0
On The Season: 32-26-3
Jacksonville @ Buffalo Fred Jackson becomes the feature back in Buffalo with Marshawn Lynch being shipped to Seattle this week. Jackson was a 1,000 yard back last year with more rushing yards than Chicago's Matt Forte and Atlanta's Michael Turner. With more room in the backfield for Jackson and rookie back C.J. Spiller the Bills run game could break out this week. The Jags coming off a huge division win against the Colts last weekend, going on the road, has hangover game all over it. Ignoring them getting slammed by the Jets last week, Bills -1.5
Tampa Bay @ Cincinnati The Bengals aren't good. Both games Carson Palmer went for over 300 yards passing, defenses slipped into zone coverage schemes and played prevent. Their offense should aim to lean on running back Cedric Benson this week for the Buccaneers defense gave up nearly 150 yards to Steeler running back Rashard Mendenhall just two weeks ago. Don't be fooled by the Bucs and their first two wins, they played two teams with 1 win between them. However, Vegas is getting their legs under them and making this line high enough for me to think twice. I will. Bucs +6.5
Atlanta @ Cleveland The Falcons might just be there. After a 3-1 start and a couple of 'to the wire' wins, Atlanta is winning those games you've got to have, to both reach the playoffs and make a deep run. Then you go ahead and look at their schedule. Cleveland this week, the Kevin Kolb Eagles next week, the Bengals, and Bucs to follow. Could the the Falcons be staring at 7-1? After leading the Falcons to their first back to back winning season in franchise history last season, quarterback Matt Ryan is looking for a return to the postseason this year. Falcons -3; Please have the Browns trot out Jake Delhomme.
St. Louis @ Detroit His two losses are by four points or less, and after winning two straight, people are starting to raise a couple eyebrows at Rams rookie quarterback Sam Bradford. Averaging close to 40 attempts a week, the Rams coaching staff is not holding the rookie back. Then there's the Lions, they've come too close for too long this season. After the injury to quarterback Matt Stafford, in a heart breaking game 1 loss to the Bears, the Lions want this one. Being said, backup quarterback Shaun Hill has impressed. More passing yards than Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler, more completions than Rivers and Brady, Shaun Hill has played well enough to win something. Things being equal, Lions -3
Kansas City @ Indianapolis You probably thought one of these teams would be undefeated at this point, just not the one that actually is. The undefeated Chiefs take their upset special to the Colts this weekend, a Colts team looking to rebound. That being said, the Chiefs offense, and mainly quarterback Matt Cassel, are going to have to put it all together without trick plays. Means more than 16 completions a game, means hand the ball off to Thomas Jones inside the twenty, it means dropping a team that can put a hurting on ever team on any given Sunday. While I don't like how the Colts played against Jacksonville last week, and I don't like giving seven points to an undefeated team, I don't buy Kansas City either. Colts -7
Green Bay @ Washington The Redskins win in Philly was more a result of the injury to Mike Vick than their actual play. On the positive side, their defense was getting to the quarterback this week. Unfortunately for Washington, the leagues 31st worst team against the pass, Green Bay can really throw the ball down field and that's despite their rushing struggles. I like the Packers going on the road in Washington, that team which loss to St. Louis and didn't look overpowering against Philadelphia is more troubling. Packers -2.5
Chicago @ Carolina The Bears looked awful on Monday night. They couldn't block anyone giving up nine sacks in the first half alone. When the Giants came out for the third quarter, Bears quarterback Jay Cutler was sidelined with a concussion and backup Todd Collins was under center. As good as the Bears defense has been, Brian Urlacher, Lance Briggs, and the newly acquired former Panther Julius Peppers, they're going to have to get good field position for the offense. Running back Matt Forte is going to have to run the ball but will the Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz allow for that?!?! If the Panthers keep this one close they could be headed to their first win this season and Jimmy Clausen's first as a quarterback in the NFL. Panthers +2.5
Denver @ Baltimore It's been four weeks and we know what the preseason favorites are. The Ravens punch teams in the mouth early, they play very tough defense, and they'll keep things close enough for Joe Flacco to make some plays down the stretch. They escaped Pittsburgh with a win last week and there offense isn't nearly as dominating as we had anticipted. Now to Denver. The Broncos are a strange team, but they hang around. Ask the Titans how tough the Broncos were to finish off! They couldn't. Denver has been leaning on their pass offense and that looks like the only way you can take advantage of the Ravens defense. Don't give McDaniels points, I don't like it. Broncos +7
New York (Giants) @ Houston I think the Texans are going to really put it on that Giants defense. Their rushing offense is attacking teams as of late and as good as the Giants feel about their win against the Bears last week, the Texans aren't that soft. Injuries to the Giants backfield is going to make them pass the ball and Houston should be ready for it this week, despite their 32nd ranked pass defense. If Mario Williams is out the gameplan will go an entirely different way. I like the Texans -3
New Orleans @ Arizona Starting Max Hall this week is bad sign for Cardinals fans. The two quality offenses they've played, Atlanta and San Diego, have tuned them up for 41 points each, now they get New Orleans. Despite the Saints struggles with injuries to Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas, their passing attack has looked good. After a couple near losses the Saints have got to want to start putting things together and staying on top of their game. As the defending champs show up in Arizona, start up the questions. The post-Kurt Warner era is a disaster in Arizona, a disaster. This matchup of the last two NFC champions is going to be a one-sided affair, bank it. New Orleans -7
San Diego @ Oakland The AFC West has been a strange division to watch as always. The Chiefs are undefeated, the Chargers have been inconsistent, we don't know what McDaniels and Co. are doing in Denver, and as for the Raiders well you can guess that one. On the flip side, the Raiders rushing attack and Darren McFadden have looked pretty solid this year, but he'll be out with an injury come Sunday afternoon. Phil Rivers and the San Diego offense seemed to have found their way against Arizona last week and hopefully can carry it over to Oakland this week. Chargers -6
Tennessee @ Dallas The Cowboys need to show up in back to back games to remind people of how good we thought they were coming in. With the Vikings, Packers, and Giants in three of the next four weeks the Cowboys are going to have to get this game against the Titans tommorow. It's bad news for a Titans offense that needs Chris Johnson to carry the offense in fear of the mistakes Vince Young has a tendency to make. Expect the Cowboys to hold of Tennessee and improve to 2-2, their defense is tough and played great against the Houston rush offense just two weeks ago. Cowboys -6.5
Philadelphia @ San Francisco Here's the game that San Francisco shows up. With Kevin Kolb in for the injured Michael Vick, the 49ers are going to pin their ears back and put pressure on Kolb. They've been too close for a couple weeks now and were expected to be too good to let this continue. San Francisco still has a solid defense that can cause problems for Philadelphia under Kolb. Many of the same problems that Washington caused the Eagles last week, San Francisco does the same things. This will be the worst Sunday night game we've seen in a while. 49ers -3
Minnesota @ New York (Jets) With a win against the Vikings who just acquired Randy Moss, the Jets would really be saying something. They've won three straight divisional games including two on the road, they're defense has looked phenomenal, and second year quarterback Mark Sanchez is really raising eyebrows by staying away from costly turnovers. As for the Vikes, Randy Moss does make them better but is three days to little time to get comfortable? The Jets have already gameplanned for Randy Moss once this season, now they'll have to add Peterson and Favre to that same gameplan. With a win against Minnesota, the Jets would clear cut be atop all contenders in the NFL. No doubt. Four points might be too many, but not for me. Jets -4
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