Last week: 7-7
Titans at Chiefs
Signs your franchise is going in the wrong direction:
1. Your franchise tight end requests a trade after signing a five-year contract in the offseason.
2. You fail to trade the disgruntled tight end.
3. Your tight end rips the GM.
4. You suspend your running back for violating team rules.
5. The suspension is not related to a simple assault charge where a woman accused the running back of shoving her at a nightclub.
Yeah, I'm going to go with the Titans here.
The pick: Titans (-8.5)
Chargers at Bills
The most awkward situation in sports happened again this week. In Buffalo, the Bills tried to trade tackle John McCargo to the Colts, but the deal fell through when he failed his physical. I don't even know what the equivalent is for this in real life. Philly.com trading me to the Washington Post, and then them sending me back because they're not happy with my blogging skills? No, that doesn't really make sense. I'll just make the pick.
The pick: Chargers (pick 'em)
Steelers at Bengals
Chad Johnson has 19 catches for 216 yards on the season. From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Johnson tried to force the Bengals to trade him early this year by threatening to sit out the season. Yesterday, in a conference call with Pittsburgh reporters, he suggested that his diminished receptions might be punishment for those actions.
"I think that may be part of why my production is down this year. To rant and rave in the offseason like that and then come back and expect to be productive, or to expect them to use me the same way that they used me in the past, is very unlikely."
Well, I guess that's better than saying: "Have you seen who's throwing the ball to me? Ryan bleepin' Fitzpatrick!"
The pick: Steelers (-9.5)
Ravens at Dolphins
John Harbaugh got the Dolphins' attention this week by saying offensive coordinator Cam Cameron did a great job with Miami last year with what he had to work with. A response from Dolphins D-lineman Vonnie Holliday:
"What did we have to work with as players?" defensive tackle Vonnie Holliday responded when the tape was replayed to him. "I think you look at it and it's clear. This year, we have a direction. We have a plan in place and you can largely attribute that to coach [Bill] Parcells and coach [Tony] Sparano. That's a big difference in leadership and who's out front."
The pick: Dolphins (-3)
Vikings at Bears
Time for MC's pick of the week. MC's record: 2-4...
The Vikings haven't scored more than two touchdowns in a game yet this year. They looked about as bad as you can look in a win last week at home against Detroit. The Bears' 'D' will load up against the run and take this one handily.
The pick: Bears (-3)
49ers at Giants
The 49ers could have easily won that game last week, but some of their decisions were mind-boggling: going away from Frank Gore at crucial times, using DeShaun Foster when they needed to pick up a third-and-short, and the awful use of replay challenge flags. I'm not sure I can pick them to cover again this season.
The pick: Giants (-10.5)
Saints at Panthers
Time for C-Nast's weekly episode recap of The Office:
What happened: Well, not much, actually. Jan stunned Michael by giving birth to her daughter, Astrid (or is it Astird?), without Michael knowing about it (and we still don't know, for sure, if Michael is/isn't the father). Michael shunned Holly in front of Jan, but then made it up to Holly with an awkward embrace and a simple, "Wanna go out?" And Jim and Pam's storyline is getting weaker by the episode. Something has to happen between these two soon.
Grade: B- -- Overall, this just wasn't a memorable episode. Too many odd moments (Dwight giving birth to a watermelon, then attacking Jan's stroller), even by "The Office" standards.
Quote of the Week, from Stanley: "I do not like pregnant women in my work space. They're always complaining. I have varicose veins, too. I have swollen ankles. I'm constantly hungry. Do you think my nipples don't get sore, too? Do you think I don't need to know the fastest way to the hospital?"
The pick: Saints (+3)
Lions at Texans
Jon Kitna says the Lions wanted to go with their younger quarterbacks and used his back injury as a reason to make the move. Kitna was placed on IR, ending his season. He says the reality is "most guys have bulging disks..." If this is true, I demand an E-60 investigation.
The pick: Texans (-9)
And the rest of the picks (my pick in CAPS)...
RAIDERS (+3) vs. Jets
BROWNS (+7.5) at Redskins
COLTS (-1) at Packers
SEAHAWKS (+10.5) at Bucs
Note: Monday night pick will be made Monday. Lines used from sportsbook.com