The 2010 NFL Picks
Week Three


Exactly as advertised… I hope you didn’t take week one to heart when picking week two. Filled with upsets, clubs like New England, San Diego, and Atlanta played Jekyll and Hyde with us. Chicago looked good on the road. Green Bay is 2-0… Minnesota is not 2-0. Lots of stories to look at… some expected… so unexpected… and lots of changes from week one to week two.

And Molly destroyed us all. She turned in a 10-5-1 week, moved to 18-10-4 overall, and has a 2-game pad over the field.

Quick little update for you… these picks are going to be posted pretty much as soon as the lines are available. And next week’s will be up right around kickoff. Got some plans that are going to keep me moving over the next few days. So… let’s get going.

This week’s movie finds us staying with Bill Murray… and a surprisingly funny movie most people overlook from him… Quick Change.

Tennessee at New York (Giants) (3)“The man is an animal! Ripping out phones, urinating on desks... you see what he did to Ms. Cochran's shirt? There's a scratch here, I mean, it's not deep, but... it’s there.” “It’s okay.” “Did he hurt anybody else? Is the strain beginning to show on him?” “‘If I could sleep ten days and nights in a rice paddy, I could certainly last in this lousy bank.’ This is what the animal said to us! He says to Ms. Cochran here: ‘Baby! Up your butt with a coconut!’ I think he was prepared to do it! Except I saw no coconut. He, uh, he had no coconut to my knowledge.” Two very interesting positions for these teams. Chris Johnson was shut down last week. No one is taking off in the NFC East. In short… while every team may have something to prove (just ask Minnesota about both team concerns and individual performance levels)… this particular game has just a bit more going on. And it’s difficult to say that the Colts were able to run on the Giants, since they were so in control the running stats really are an afterthought. What I can tell you is this… Eli Manning played good, the Giants put the Panthers away… Eli played bad, the Colts won big. Maybe it isn’t fair pointing the finger at Eli, but it’s the easiest place to look. He’s already thrown 4 interceptions this year, and the Giants have 7 turnovers in their first 2 games. So… simple analysis. Number one, can two straight teams hold Johnson down. Number two, can the Giants stop turning the ball over. I say no and maybe. And that’s enough to take the underdog.
Bob: Tennessee
Terry: New York
Mike: Tennessee
Mike Jr: Tennessee
Molly: New York
Gus: New York
Sam: New York

Buffalo at New England (13)“Can it, here comes Clarabelle.” Some things worth pondering: (1) New England just doesn’t lose to Buffalo over the past years. (2) You have to go back to 2007 for New England to cover this spread. In other words… 13 is alot of points. But then there’s this… Ryan Fitzpatrick is staring. With 29 games and 3 teams on his resume, we aren’t talking about a rookie. But for his career he gets picked off more than he throws touchdowns (27 to 21) and he completes 57.8% of his passes. He also averages roughly 150 passing yards per game played. This is a very good game for New England to right the ship. (Speaking of righting the ship… yeah, I am sort of worried about the Patriots and what is becoming a standard fade in the second half of games. But this isn’t Indianapolis, Miami or even last week against New York. That type of consideration belongs in the conversation next week when they face Miami.)
Bob: New England
Terry: New England
Mike: New England
Mike Jr: New England
Molly: New England
Gus: New England
Sam: New England

Cleveland at Baltimore (10½)“Listen, I’ve had just about enough of your comedy, clown. We’re coming in through the plate glass.” “Alright, I gotta hang-up now, because I gotta go kill everybody.” In 2007, the Browns won both games against the Ravens. Since then, they’ve lost all four games… and they haven’t been close. If you look over their history, you’ll see that in the past couple of years the Ravens bury weaker opponents.
Bob: Baltimore
Terry: Baltimore
Mike: Baltimore
Mike Jr: Baltimore
Molly: Baltimore
Gus: Baltimore
Sam: Baltimore

Pittsburgh (2½) at Tampa Bay“Oh sir! You forgot your map! And our millions of dollars!” I thought we’d see some inconsistencies from Pittsburgh early on… but after what they did to the Titans last week, I just can’t go against that defense here, with a young offense on the other side.
Bob: Pittsburgh
Terry: Tampa Bay
Mike: Pittsburgh
Mike Jr: Tampa Bay
Molly: Tampa Bay
Gus: Tampa Bay
Sam: Pittsburgh

Cincinnati (3) at Carolina“What’s your name pal? What should I call ya?” “Well, I’ve always liked the name chip. Would you call me chip?” “Alright. What was that shooting just now, Chip?” “Oh wait! Call me Skip.” “Okay, Skip, what was that shooting?” “The cameras, I was shooting the cameras. They were looking at me. Quit looking at me!” Carolina has been buried two straight weeks, looks lost, and really doesn’t have much success to speak of. I’d like to give you something, but Tampa handled them with ease last week, and in 2009 they started out with three miserable performances before using the bye week to regroup. In comes a Bengals club that wants to believe they got their swagger back last week… they didn’t, the Jets got their swagger back, they just won a tough divisional game… but Cincy has enough swagger for me in this contest.
Bob: Cincinnati
Terry: Carolina
Mike: Cincinnati
Mike Jr: Cincinnati
Molly: Cincinnati
Gus: Cincinnati
Sam: Carolina

Atlanta at New Orleans (4)“You aren’t going to hit me again are you?” “I haven’t hit anybody since I was nine.” “Yeah, but it was me you hit!” I’m taking the dog here. I don’t want to do it… I want the Saints to win. But we have yet to see the New Orleans offense in 2010, and… it appears that their opponents may not have been in a true position to test the New Orleans defense yet. Two huge wins… but once in a while there is something to be said about timing and when you face your opponents. Arriving in New Orleans is an Atlanta team that lost both games in 2009 to New Orleans, but honestly had some moments where they looked very good. The Falcons looked great against Arizona last week, and we now may be able to say that the overtime game against Pittsburgh is a credit to them rather than an embarrassing loss.
Bob: Atlanta
Terry: New Orleans
Mike: New Orleans
Mike Jr: New Orleans
Molly: Atlanta
Gus: Atlanta
Sam: New Orleans

San Francisco (2½) at Kansas City“Is that our plane?” “No, if it were our plane, it would be crashing.” In the middle of writing this column, having added this and the next two games with wonderful insight, the computer crashed and burned. In sort of a half-victory, it did manage to save the information on this game, the Detroit against Minnesota one, and most of Dallas at Houston. But, once I polished it up and bit, saved it and walked away… I returned to find it was all gone. I suppose the lesson you can take from this… other than computers suck… is that some times overanalyzing these games is worthless. So let’s see if I can share some information that you might not get with a casual glance. Did you know Kansas City is incredibly lucky to be 2-0? It’s true. But, do you know why? The Chiefs fell behind by 7 to San Diego and then put up 21 unanswered points. One of the touchdowns involved a massive 12-yard scoring drive and another was a 94-yard punt return. Matt Cassel threw for a simply breathtaking 68-yards in the game. (No turnovers for Kansas City though.) A week later the Chiefs defeated the Browns… which, you know, is the Browns. But, there’s more. 3 Kansas City field goals and a defensive interception returned for a score accounted for the points. No touchdown from the offense. Now, sure the 49ers have lost two straight… but was anyone surprised by New Orleans winning last week? So it’s one embarrassing loss, and then a slightly better effort. Right? Good. We can move on.
Bob: San Francisco
Terry: Kansas City
Mike: San Francisco
Mike Jr: San Francisco
Molly: Kansas City
Gus: San Francisco
Sam: San Francisco

Detroit at Minnesota (10½)“At least give me the women.” “Get your own women!” Nothing that I’ve seen from the Vikings tells me to trust them to win this game, and you can forget about winning big. (Which… of course… is exactly why Peterson on his own will probably put up 200-yards rushing and 3 touchdowns.) I think the Lions could win this game. I like what I’m seeing from Jahvid Best. Calvin Johnson is the most talent receiver playing in this game. Do I expect them to win? No. I guess not. However… Brett Favre has been picked off 4 times this year. And there is just nothing to back up the argument they’ve solved their problems.
Bob: Detroit
Terry: Minnesota
Mike: Detroit
Mike Jr: Minnesota
Molly: Minnesota
Gus: Minnesota
Sam: Detroit

Dallas at Houston (3)“What the hell kind of clown are you?” “The crying on the inside kind, I guess.” Everything about this game… everything, everything, everything… says to pick Houston. Which is why I’m going with Dallas. Yup… the Cowboys have looked awful. There has been absolutely no running game at all from them yet. And while Romo to Austin is working… Schaub to Johnson has been good as well. I just can’t shake the feeling that Houston never wins when I think of them as a certainty. The Texans won a huge game over Indy to start the year, and then fought for a victory in overtime on the road against Washington. In both games, part of what Houston did was impressive, and some of it wasn’t. Still… two wins… doing the big things just fine. It just seems too easy to give up on the Cowboys here. They’ve got an early bye week (next week), a brutal upcoming schedule (Tennessee, at Minnesota, New York (Giants) twice, Jacksonville and at Green Bay… not one easy game to be seen), and need this game for a ton of reasons beyond avoiding 0-3. Yeah… desperation may not be measured in statistics, but it can count.
Bob: Dallas
Terry: Dallas
Mike: Houston
Mike Jr: Houston
Molly: Houston
Gus: Dallas
Sam: Houston

Washington (3½) at St. Louis“Are you gonna hit me now?” “No, but if your leg is broken, we’ll have to destroy you.” Tricky, tricky game. Washington did defeat Dallas and very easily could have beaten Houston. Do we count the fact that both of those games were at home? In a way, I think you have to. Still… it’s becoming obvious how to play the Rams. You concentrate on Steven Jackson and force them to beat you some other way. (At some point in his career, he should sue the club for non-support.) I like Washington in this game. It’s exactly the kind of unheralded contest McNabb has made defined his career by winning.
Bob: Washington
Terry: Washington
Mike: Washington
Mike Jr: St. Louis
Molly: St. Louis
Gus: St. Louis
Sam: St. Louis

Philadelphia (3) at Jacksonville“Nothing’s your fault... except you honked the f**king horn.” Guess how Jacksonville did at home last year? Overall, 4-4… a yawn. But after getting decked by Arizona in a loss and then spanking Tennessee in a win, the next 6 games were all decided by 5 or less. Quality of the opponent didn’t matter… Miami, Indianapolis, Buffalo… all between 3-5 points in the decision. In 2008 though, they went 2-6 and the results were all over the board. I think your best argument is to say they actually are, at best, yawn inducing at home. What we haven’t really seen yet from the Jaguars is a Jones-Drew sighting. And that’s where this gets interesting. Because in splitting the first two games, both times the opposition had more net yardage on offense. And of all the game changers in the league, I think Jones-Drew is the most potent single player they’ve faced.
Bob: Jacksonville
Terry: Philadelphia
Mike: Philadelphia
Mike Jr: Philadelphia
Molly: Jacksonville
Gus: Jacksonville
Sam: Philadelphia

Indianapolis (5½) at Denver“I said we’re closed, Bozo.” “I wouldn’t. And that’s Mr. Bozo, okay?” Here’s the thing… Orton and the Denver passing game has been quite impressive this year. I know a 1-1 record doesn’t speak volumes for them… but hidden in there is Orton playing well and distributing the ball. (Now if only the Broncos could find someone to run the ball.) Well… guess what… the Colts will let you run. In a game where they couldn’t pass, and were so far down they had to pass, Ahmad Bradshaw averaged just over 5-yards a carry for the Giants while racking up 89 rushing yards. For Houston in the opener, Foster went nuts for 231-yards on the ground. I’m picking the upset here.
Bob: Denver
Terry: Indianapolis
Mike: Indianapolis
Mike Jr: Indianapolis
Molly: Indianapolis
Gus: Denver
Sam: Denver

San Diego (5½) at Seattle“I booked the eleven o’clock to Martinique.” “Martinique?” “Martinique? But I don’t know anything about Martinique.” “What did you know about Fiji?” “Well... nothing.” Great against the 49ers… horrible against the Broncos… and no signs of consistency with the Chargers arriving. Wonderful. I can’t point at either of these teams and say I know what to expect. San Diego generally doesn’t get fazed playing on the road, and actually handles inferior teams better on the road. I just have to pick the better team here.
Bob: San Diego
Terry: San Diego
Mike: San Diego
Mike Jr: San Diego
Molly: Seattle
Gus: Seattle
Sam: San Diego

Oakland at Arizona (4)“What’s that smell?” “Used wine.” McFadden and then alot of crossed fingers. That’s about it when it comes to the Raiders and their approach to the game. And before we go all crazy about Gradkowski… geez… this is the same guy that racked up a 2.8 rating in minimal action for Cleveland. Is that a fair observation? Probably not. But he’s going to toss a touchdown pass for every interception, and for the most part does either less than once per game over his career. We’re back at McFadden folks. Arizona got trampled last week by Atlanta. I think 2 of the cheerleaders rushed for 100+ against the Cardinals in that game. Heck, the Falcons had pretty much a 2 to 1 time of possession edge. But I think alot of that has to be credited to a balanced attack. We shouldn’t be confusing Atlanta’s offense with Oakland’s.
Bob: Arizona
Terry: Oakland
Mike: Arizona
Mike Jr: Arizona
Molly: Arizona
Gus: Arizona
Sam: Arizona

New York (Jets) at Miami (1½)“A real man? Who has to use a gun and hold people prisoner? You’re not a man. You’re a coward.” “She does not speak for the rest of us Mr. Clown. We think that you are quite brave and manly.” I can’t stand picking this game. After last week, the Jets are back and feeling pretty good. But… again… is that reality or perception?
Bob: Miami
Terry: New York
Mike: New York
Mike Jr: Miami
Molly: Miami
Gus: Miami
Sam: New York

Green Bay at Chicago (3) “Thank you Roy. God! Alright, Roy’s going to get us the duffle bag, a wheelchair and some skis out of lost luggage to cover your limp.” “Did you give him a couple of bucks?” “Yeah, try $1200. Scary but Roy’s sixth sense told him we were in some kind of jam.” “ESP exists, Grimm. They’ve proved it.” “Yeah, you picking up anything from me right now, pal?” Last year the packers swept the Bears, with Cutler throwing 3 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. While I’m willing to concede that Cutler has played better so far this year, and looked very good against Dallas… the fact is Green Bay is playing like the best team in the NFC right now.
Bob: Green Bay
Terry: Chicago
Mike: Green Bay
Mike Jr: Green Bay
Molly: Chicago
Gus: Chicago
Sam: Green Bay

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Molly: Last week 10-5-1, currently 18-10-4
Bob: Last week 8-7-1, currently 16-12-4
Sam: Last week 8-7-1, currently 15-13-4
Terry: Last week 6-9-1, currently 14-14-4
Mike Jr: Last week 5-10-1, currently 14-14-4
Mike: Last week 5-10-1, currently 12-16-4
Gus: Last week 5-10-1, currently 12-16-4

If you have any comments or questions, please e-mail me at