By Bryan Jeon
Last week: 13-3
Week 11 Recap: Brett Favre…When is that old, washed-up guy going to have a bad game? Even when throwing for under 300 yards for the first time in four weeks (218 yards), he throws for 3 TDs and 0 INTs. Is that his off day? There are those talks coming up again of him returning next year. He sure has erased a lot of doubt from the critics earlier in the year…Adrian Peterson doesn’t play, but backup Chester Taylor rushes for 164 yards and 3 touchdowns on 22 carries (7.5 YPC) to be the weekly leader, which makes me wonder, is the Vikings offensive line that good? Peterson leads the NFL with 6.4 yards per carry while Taylor is second with 5.6 YPC…Peyton Manning is playing like he wants to be forgotten. His 163 yard day with 0 TDs and 1 INT makes it three weeks in a row that the Colts have either lost or won an ugly one. In that span, Peyton has 3 passing TDs, 8 INTs and a fumble lost while getting sacked 7 times. In the first 7 games, he had 13 TDs , 3 INTs and was only sacked 5 times. And then there’s the Pats up to no good again. You know Randy Moss got those 4 1st half TDs just to show up Terrell Owens, who had 4 TDs earlier in the day. The Pats are flawless. They put up a touchdown in each of their first seven scoring drives! That’s into the fourth quarter! And they score 56 points while taking out Tom Brady and Moss early in the fourth and with Bill Belichick electing to punt on 4th-and-inches on the Buffalo 30 when the game was all but over because of the respect he had for Bills coach Dick Jauron. I really see Belichick doing that when they face the Jets in Week 15…A great pick ’em week, personally. My first office pool win, and I’m on fire. I lead all five Yahoo! “experts” as well as Yahoo! users with a comfy 4-game lead over Michael Silver and Brandon Funston.
Week 12 Picks:
Green Bay (9-1) over Detroit (6-4) – The Lions will lose their straight game to a balanced offense of Brett Favre passing and Ryan Grant running the ball.
Dallas (9-1) over NY Jets (2-8) – Look for T.O. to put on another show at Texas Stadium in the Cowboys’ tuneup against Green Bay next week.
Indianapolis (8-2) over Atlanta (3-7) – Warrick Dunn needs 26 rushing yards to reach 10,000 in his 11-year career, a feat only 21 running backs have accomplished. (Question: Who are the 2 active players in this club?) Manning needs to shape up if he wants to leave the Georgia Dome with a win. (Answer: Arizona’s Edgerrin James with 11,115 yards and Jacksonville’s Fred Taylor with 10,117 yards.)
Seattle (6-4) over St. Louis (2-8) – I thought St. Louis’ offense was back but after putting up just 13 points against the pathetic 49ers, I have to go with Matt Hasselbeck and the new pass-first Seahawks in a drubbing like in Week 7 when Seattle won 33-6.
NY Giants (7-3) over Minnesota (4-6) – Match up to watch: the Vikings rushing game (177.9 YPG, no. 1) against the Giants rush ‘D’ (91.3 YPG, no. 7). I say the Giants contain Taylor enough to win.
Jacksonville (7-3) over Buffalo (5-5) – With Marshawn Lynch out, the Bills will be just a prep game against the Jags, who get a rematch against the Colts next week.
New Orleans (4-6) over Carolina (4-6) – After winning four straight, the Saints have lost two in a row, including last week to Houston, 23-10. Look for them to bounce back against the Panthers and their unstable offense, who have lost four in a row and scored just 44 points in those 4 games.
Tampa Bay (6-4) over Washington (5-5) – Jeff Garcia may be in for a big day, as the Skins ‘D’ has allowed 4 passing touchdowns each to Donovan McNabb and Tony Romo, resulting in a 2-game losing streak.
Cleveland (6-4) over Houston (5-5) – Like the Packers, the Browns are for real. They’ve put up at least 27 points in each of their last 5 games, four of them for wins. My only concern is their defense, which has made the last three games be decided by three points, two of them in overtime. They sure are a fun team to watch though, and Derek Anderson is putting up big numbers. He has more passing yards than Ben Roethlisberger, more touchdown passes than Favre and a better passer rating than Manning. I’m hoping they grab one of the Wild-Cards if they don’t win the AFC North outright from the 7-3 Steelers.
Tennessee (6-4) over Cincinnati (3-7) – Vince Young threw for a career-high 305 yards and rushed for a season-high 74 yards in last week’s loss to Denver. Perhaps he heard the critics who were beginning to whisper sophomore slump to each other.
Denver (5-5) over Chicago (4-6) – If Travis Henry and Selvin Young are unable to go, Andre Hall will look to be the third 100-yard rusher for the Broncos this season. He picked up 89 yards last week on 7 carries. Ironically, it’s been the Bears ‘D’ and not Rex Grossman as the reason why Chicago’s been losing lately.
Kansas City (4-6) over Oakland (2-8) – The Chiefs offense is in limbo. Brodie Croyle, taking over the starting job for Damon Huard, has just 331 passing yards, 1 TD and 1 INT in 2 games. With Larry Johnson still nursing his foot and Priest Holmes retired, Kolby Smith, the rookie out of Louisville who has just 10 carries for 19 yards on the season, will start Sunday. Tony Gonzalez hasn’t been seeing his usual number of balls as apparently, Chiefs fans get excited about a Croyle to Dwayne Bowe connection. K.C.’s last win was in Week 7 when they beat Oakland, 12-10. Look for another ugly one, as Oakland has lost six straight.
Arizona (5-5) over San Francisco (2-8) – The 49ers won in Week 1, 20-17, but that was when Matt Leinart was starting, threw for a career-low 102 yards, and Leonard Pope tied for the team-high with 22 receiving yards. The Kurt Warner to Larry Fitzgerald tag team is in full force, as the 49ers have lost eight straight and scored just 9 total points in their last two contests.
San Diego (5-5) over Baltimore (4-6) – It has been five weeks since LaDainian Tomlinson rushed for over 100 yards in a game. He has done that just twice this season. Baltimore has lost four straight and before last week’s 30-point explosion against Cleveland, scored only 28 points in the three games prior. Look for them to put up no more than a touchdown or two.
New England (10-0) over Philadelphia (5-5) – This game is just not fair without McNabb. I mean, the Pats would have been only 18.5-point favorites had McNabb played as opposed to the current 22-point line. The Pats really are as perfect as a professional sports team can get. Expect an encore of last Sunday night’s performance.
Pittsburgh (7-3) over Miami (0-10) – The Fins will have to wait until Week 13 against the Jets for their first win, whose only two wins are against Miami and Pittsburgh in an overtime win last week. They need to regroup quick though with John Beck, who had just 109 passing yards in last week’s NFL debut, and a dinged Jesse Chatman. Patrick Cobbs, who has 11 carries for 37 yards on the season, will get the nod if Chatman can’t go. Oh yeah, and Ricky Williams is going to be the backup.