LT's NFL Week 3 Picks

Lee TawilContributor ISeptember 23, 2009

ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 21: Patrick Willis #52 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates a victory against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome on December 21, 2008 in St. Louis, Missouri.  The 49ers beat the Rams 17-16.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Following a tough to pick Week 2, I am going to try to bounce back to pick’em supremacy in week 3. Here it goes:

Browns at Ravens (Ravens) – This is an easy one. The Browns have got to be the worst team in the AFC right now, whereas the Ravens might be the best. Browns fans are getting restless with Brady Quinn, and Ravens fans are just loving Joe Flacco. Defense? Do we even have to ask? I really don’t see any way possible that the Browns can win this game. And they are on the road! Ravens by a bunch.

Redskins at Lions (Redskins) – After last week’s squeaker against the Rams, the Redskins have shown me that they might not be that good. They clearly have no offense, which means that they can never be a lock to win any game. They are playing the Lions though. Had the Lions not been on a losing streak bigger than Shaq’s feet, I might consider taking Detroit, but I simply can’t. To disrespect the ‘Skins like that would be wrong. So I gotta take the ‘Skins, but not so confidently.

Jaguars at Texans (Texans) – This should be a good game. These teams have been a nice little rivalry for a few years now, and anything can happen when these teams take the field on Sunday. Right now I think that the Jags are one of the least-talented teams in the league, and they haven’t gotten it together yet. The Texans, though, have some really standout players who can take over a game from the offensive and defensive side of the ball. Their performance against the Titans last week makes this choice a lot easier for me. Texans big.

Falcons at Patriots (Falcons) – Tough game. The Falcons are probably one of the most consistent teams in the NFL right now. They have an offense that put up somewhere around 25 points a game, and a defense that is no pushover. The addition of Tony Gonzalez has helped Matt Ryan as expected, as he has two touchdowns in two weeks. On the other hand, you have the Patriots who have come out sluggish thus far. Brady has not gotten back to full form yet, and there are a ton of questions being asked about this team. They have the potential to explode at any time, which is why it’s so hard to pick against them. This week I gotta. I feel that the Falcons have the perfect balanced attack to beat the Patriots in a close battle. Falcons by 4.

Packers at Rams (Packers) – The Packers are coming off of an awful loss to the Bengals, and the Rams are coming off of a close loss to the Redskins. In my opinion, the Packers are going to be fired up for this one, and they will want to score early and often on the Rams weak defense. Because the Rams will be down early, their running game will never have a chance to get started, and they will have to throw against a strong Green Bay secondary. That should be big problems for Bulger and the gang. Pack all the way.

Giants at Bucanneers (Giants) – The Giants had an impressive win at Dallas last game, and the Bucs had a big loss to Buffalo. The Giants are a seasoned team with all of their positions filled, now that the receivers have shown what they can do on the big stage. The Bucs, however, do not have it all figured out just yet. They have some talent all around, but they have not fully clicked as a team. The Giants should not help their progression, and Byron Leftwich is going to have a long day trying to figure out this Giants defense. Big blue by two scores.

Titans at Jets (Titans) – Intriguing matchup between two good teams in the AFC. The Titans are coming off of two 3 point losses, and the Jets are coming off of their impressive victory against the Patriots. I could see this game being of the smashmouth variety, which means a lot of running and a lot of defense. Whichever defense tires out first, is going to lose this one. To me, that team will be the Jets. Having to defend against Chris Johnson and LenDale White is no walk in the park. They will wear down the Jets front four, and break one open late for the victory. Titans by 7 or less.

Chiefs at Eagles (Eagles) – The Chiefs have Cassel back and healthy, and they could be a test for a McNabb-less Eagles. Also, B-West is uncertain with an ankle problem. Signs are pointing to the Chiefs, but for some strange reason I cannot pick them. The Eagles defense should cause a lot of problems, and a lot of turnovers. Their defense may be good enough to carry them to a victory in this one, and that’s what I believe will happen. LeSean McCoy is no chump either, and if he gets extended time, don’t be surprised if he cracks 100. Eagles by 10.

49ers at Vikings (49ers) – This is a great game. Two solid defenses will duke it out in Minnesota for the right to be 3-0. Who will come out on top? Well, I have been a firm believer in Mike Singletary from the day he sent Vernon Davis to the locker room early. Plus, with guys like Patrick Willis patrolling the defense, things are much easier. The Niners can definitely come out of here with a W, and that’s what I see happening. It will be a close game, and the Niners will pull it out with a field goal in the end. Niners by 3. Sorry Brett.

Saints at Bills (Saints) – I love the way the Saints have played through two games. They have done everything they are capable of, and that is what it’s all about. Then you have the Bills. Impressive last game, and impressive for most of the game against New England, but their offense is not that strong at this point. Their defense is pretty good, but that doesn’t matter against the Saints. New Orleans can score on anyone, as they showed last week versus the Eagles. The Saints D has stepped up too, so they have become a solid complete team. Saints by two TDs.

Bears at Seahawks (Bears) – After an awesome victory against the defending champs, the Bears must be on cloud nine. What’s even better, is that they get to possibly face a Seahawks team without Matt Hasselbeck. Hasselbeck’s fractured ribs can keep him out of this one, and slow him down if he decides to play. Either way, Matt is not in full form. When that’s the case, the Seahawks struggle. Look for the Bears to capitalize, and look for Cutler to have a 3 TD performance in this one. Bears by 10+.

Steelers at Bengals (Steelers) – The Steelers are coming off of a heartbreaker to the Bears, and the Bengals are coming off of a shocker against the Packers. Are the Bengals for real? I think they could be, but that doesn’t mean that they are going to beat Green Bay and Pittsburgh in back to back weeks. Polamalu being out should make this game closer than it should be, but I see the Steelers pulling this one out. Big Ben doesn’t like to lose, and it will be evident in the way he plays in this one. Steelers by 7.

Broncos at Raiders (Broncos) – AFC West games are always the hardest for me. Last week I picked KC over the Raiders because they were at home, and that didn’t work out. Well this week, I am going to take the Broncos on the road because I feel that they are better… by a little. There is no clear cut favorite in this one, and it should be a battle of mediocrity all game on offense. The team that turns it over the most will lose, and that will be the Raiders. Broncos by 3.

Dolphins at Chargers (Dolphins) – I was really impressed by the Wildcat offense against the Colts on Monday night. It was hard to stop even though Indy knew it was coming. Although it was so effective they lost the game because of the Colts and their big play ability. This game, the Dolphins don’t have to deal with Peyton Manning, but rather, they will have to face Philip Rivers. I think they could rattle him and get him off balance just enough. Overall, it should be a fun game to watch, as both teams have a ton of talent, but I feel like the Dolphins are going to find a way to turn their Wildcat success into a victory in this one. Fins by 5.

Colts at Cardinals (Colts) – This should be an interesting game. If the Cards do not come out to their full potential, I don’t see the Cardinals having any chance in this one. That being said, I don’t think that they will. Warner is coming off of a ridiculous game where he completed 92% of his passes. That doesn’t happen every week unless your Tom Brady, and Warner is not. I could see Freeney causing a lot of trouble on the line, and Warner will be forced to rush the ball out. When Warner has limited time to throw the ball, he becomes a different quarterback altogether. He is prone to fumbles and picks, and that is what I expect in this one. Peyton Manning should be business as usual in primetime, and the Colts should roll by 10.

Panthers at Cowboys (Cowboys) – Until the Panthers bench Jake Delhomme, I cannot honestly pick them to win games. I understand that he didn’t play too badly against the Falcons, but did he get the victory? No. The Panthers are not the team they were last year, but there is always that possibility that the get their running game started. I just don’t see it happening against the ‘Boys. The Cowboys are extremely ticked off about losing their home opener, and you can expect them to play a lot more cautiously with the football. They might be without MB3, but they have Felix Jones and Tashard Choice which should not be a problem. The only way I see Dallas losing this one is if they choke under the bright lights of Monday night. Being that it’s just the Panthers and not the Eagles or Redskins, I see them playing calmly and grabbing a 9 point win.