06 December 2006

2006 Week 14 Picks

It's divisional match up week, football fans. Our beloved Eagles travel to DC (actually to Largo, MD) to take on the Redskins. And we better win, because Chef Spouse and I are taking Life Long Eagles Fan Mom and You-Two-Calm-Down-or-I'm-Turning-Off-the-TV Dad to the game. Merry Christmas, fam! It'll be even merrier if we win, which I think we have a better than average chance of doing. A lot of our season to date seems to have been about everyone waiting for someone else - presumably McNabb - to step up and make the big plays. Now it finally seems like they've realized that all 53 guys play and everyone has to be a playmaker as best he can. Garcia's a lot tougher - and has a lot more left in his tank - than many people, including me, had given him credit for. At this point, each game is win or go home. I think the whole team finally gets that - and I don't think anybody's looking to go home.

In the other match ups:

The Browns take on the Steelers Thursday night. Boy, was that a short streak. The Steelers need to win 3 of their last 4 games to finish at .500, and this is the only gimme. Enjoy it, guys.

The Falcons, despite their complete lack of consistency to date, should be able to take Chuckie's Bucs, who've demonstrated extraordinary consistency in the losing department.

After the Chiefs lose to the Ravens, d'ya think Herm might go back to Damon Huard? I would. Of course, it will be too late to catch the Chargers, and might be too late to snag an AFC wildcard spot, with 4 other teams currently at 7-5, and at least two of them (Bengals and Jets) virtual locks this week.

Speaking of, anyone think the Bengals are going to have any trouble with the Raiders? Think Ocho Cinco will even bother to play? It's not like they'll need him or anything.

The Jets are getting hot late in the year. They should extend their streak to 3 with a win over the Bills Sunday.

In the other two 7-5 matchups, the Broncos are probably going to get killed by the Chargers on the road. You know, unless LT oversleeps and Philip Rivers gets lost on the way to his own stadium and they both miss at least the first 3 quarters. Poor Jay Culter. Couldn't they ease him into the NFL with a nice game against the Raiders or something? At least he's got the Cardinals and the 49ers coming up, which should be a confidence builder, although it arrives too late for their playoff chances.

The Colts/Jags thing is a little tougher to call. A month ago, I would've said Colts no problem. Actually, that's probably not true - when they last played in week 3, I picked the Jags. Which I'm going to do again. What the hell.

The Lions gave the Pats a good scare last week. I suspect they'll do more than that against the Vikings this week. I think the Lions will win, although at this point it's in their best interest to throw games and improve their draft standing. But nobody ever seems to do that, despite its inherent wisdom.

Will Joey Harrington get it back together against the Pats? I'm going out on a limb here and saying no. No way. The Pats aren't going to wrap up the division this week (see above re: resurgent Jets), but they will get one step closer.

The Giants/Panthers thing could go either way. In common with most of the NFC this year, they're both playing up, or more often down, to the level of their competition. Which could mean a total combined score of 112 or of 3. But one thing I can guarantee is that Eli Manning will begin a string of nightmares featuring Julius Peppers likely to last the rest of the Giants' season. Which will be precisely 3 more games if they don't snap out of it. I suspect the Panthers will win this one, but I wouldn't be surprised either way.

The Titans are gonna whup up on the Texans. And I think they'll be playoff contenders in a year or two if they're able to hold the core of their team together and Vince Young stays healthy and keeps developing. Texans: you still sure about that Mario Williams pick? Yeah, that worked out great.

Packers at 49ers. You know it: Most Painful Game of the Week.

Seahawks/Cardinals is likely to be ugly as a redheaded stepchild. You know, as a redhead, I have to wonder where that expression came from. I don't think redheads are ugly. Chef Spouse doesn't think redheads are ugly. I think we need to come up with a new cliche for ugly. What about "ugly as Jimmy Johnson's hair"? Yeah, that's about how ugly this game will be.

The Saints better kill the Cowboys. That'd be sweet. Laissez les bons temps rouler! You know, this game could be a preview, much as it pains me to include the Cowboys, of the NFC championship game.

You would think the Bears would have no trouble with the Rams. Of course, you would also think that Rex Grossman would manage to hold it together as the season progresses. The Bears will still probably win this one on the strength of their D, but I think the playoffs could get as ugly as Jimmy Johnson's hair for them in a big hurry unless they straighten out their QB issues.

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