In Week 10 of our NFL Game Picks, we hit on both the New York Giants (+3) and the Green Bay Packers (+2.5). For our Money Line Game, the New York Giants (+130) pulled out the victory 36-31 over the Philadelphia Eagles. This now brings our winning percentage vs. the spread to .526 and the Giants was the third money line pick Pro Football 101 has hit since it began doing so in Week Four. For this week, here’s who we like.
1. Carolina Panthers (-14) vs. Detroit Lions
With Daunte Culpepper ready to lead the charge once again, this looks like the safest bet on the board. It’s just too difficult to retire from the NFL and then expect to come back and perform at a high level in only your second game with a new organization. There’s a new system to learn, players to gel with, etc. Look for Carolina to have success on the ground and through the air and for its defense to make like miserable all day long for the Lions quarterback. This will be a rout.
Next in Line
2. Pittsburgh Steelers (-5) vs. San Diego Chargers
I really thought that the move to defensive coordinator Ron Rivera would have a big impact on the Bolts D and in particular the pass rush, but last week’s game told me otherwise. Look for Roethlisberger to eat this secondary alive and for Parker, who is expected back in the lineup, to have a big day on the ground. Defensively, we see the Steelers D being able to contain Tomlinson and force Rivers into a few mistakes.
3. Seattle Seahawks (+3) vs. Arizona Cardinals
Although Arizona is running away with this division—and a lot of that has to do with the poor play of the others, they’re still very shaky away from home. Their record is 2-3 on the road, with wins over the lowly Niners and Rams. In this game, the Seahawks get both quarterback Matt Hasselback and wide receiver Deion Branch back in the lineup and we see this providing the necessary spark to pull off the mini-upset.
4. Kansas City Chiefs (+5.5) vs. New Orleans Saints
See money line below.
Others we like
5. Miami Dolphins (-10.5) vs. Oakland Raiders
The defunct Raiders have managed only six points in their past two games. While the 10.5 points is a bit higher than we’d normally go for the Fins, we think Oakland has already mailed the NFL season in.
6. Philadelphia Eagles (-9) vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Now that the Bengals have their 1st win, the pressure is off. They can now go back to playing like the winless team they were. The Eagles are still mad about the golden opportunity they blew last weekend when the Giants beat them in Philly, so look for them to come out strong.
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3.5) vs. Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings were fortunate to pull out the one-point victory over Green Bay last Sunday and had to rely on Adrian Peterson to overcome Frerotte’s miscues. Look for Tampa to focus all of their attention on Peterson and put the onus on Frerotte. That’s not good news for Vikings’ fans. Tampa gets the victory by at least seven here.
Kansas City Chiefs (+180) vs. New Orleans Saints
In the last three weeks, the Chiefs have taken the 14-point favorite Jets to the end, the 9.5-point favorite Bucs to OT and the 15.5-point favorite Chargers to the wire. This week they get the Saints, and New Orleans is definitely not a world beater. They have a lot of issues, most of them on the defensive side of the ball.
Herm Edwards seems to have his young team playing well together, and a lot of that is due to the improvement of quarterback Tyler Thigpen. He’s played lights-out the last three weeks. This game is also being played in Arrowhead, which is a notoriously tough place for visitors to play in, so look for the upset this week by the Kansas City Chiefs.