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Week 10 NFL Picks: Underdogs That Will Win Outright

ATLANTA, GA - NOVEMBER 4: Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys passes against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome on November 4, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. The Falcons defeated the Cowboys 19-13.  (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images
Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistNovember 11, 2012

NFL’s Week 10 featured a bunch of matchups with even teams that can go either way.

As a result, the favorites in some of these games are more like pseudo-favorites. Vegas has given them two points or less, but the game is basically a pick'em; no team really has the edge. In actuality, the favorites are on upset alert.

Underdogs should be vengeful Sunday after winning only four of 14 games last weekend. These three games, in particular, will feature the unassuming favorite stumbling on their home field.

 

Detroit (at Minnesota)

The Lions will put points on the scoreboard with their emerging passing game featuring Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson, including Mikel Leshoure on the ground.

The Minnesota Vikings will likely be without Percy Harvin due to an ankle injury. Harvin’s absence puts a huge dent into their passing game, which relies on quick screens with Harvin as a main source of offense.

In a game with the explosive Lions offense, however, Minnesota will have to throw the ball eventually. That will be their demise.

Atlanta (at New Orleans)

The New Orleans Saints defense may be one of the worst units in history, yet they’re favored at home against the league’s only unbeaten. Yes, I’m still trying to figure out what Vegas is thinking too.

The Falcons may not be one of the strongest 8-0 teams in recent history, but they have the offensive firepower to blow the Saints defense out of the water.

More importantly, the Falcons defense is much improved compared to recent years, so they should be able to force some three-and-outs and a couple turnovers that should provide the difference.

Sure, the Saints will play inspired at home, but the Falcons are the better team in all aspects of the game.

Dallas (at Philadelphia)

Even though they’ve lost their last two games, the Cowboys have played impressive football in defeat against the Super Bowl champions and undefeated Falcons.

Now Dallas will finally face an opponent they can handle.

The most points the Philadelphia Eagles have scored this season has been a mere 23. Not to mention their quarterback turns the ball over more than their entire team.

The main culprit of this team’s offensive inefficiencies has been their offensive line. Enter DeMarcus Ware and Rob Ryan’s blitz schemes. This talented defense should dial up some blitz packages that will have Michael Vick guessing all night.

This matchup will come down to the fourth quarter, but Dallas has the better mental confidence to win down the stretch.

 

Mike Shiekman is a Breaking New Writer for Bleacher Report.


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