Here we are almost at the half way point of the NFL season for 2008 campaign. With some of the hot picks not performing to their abilities and some teams over achieving, this post season may be a fairly interesting one.
Now for the 'dis' honor role this week:
Larry Johnson - Suspended for one game for violating the leagues personal conduct policy. What did Mr. Johnson do to lose a weeks pay? He spat a drink in someone's face. Not just someone, but, a woman. A woman. I hope your mom is proud. Enjoy the week off.
Ted Cottrell - Sorry Ted, someone had to take the fall for the disastrous performance of the Chargers' defense this year. Can't fire the players, however, you are the one that is ultimately responsible for the play of the defense.
Switching to the rest of the news around the league. Aaron Rodgers of the Packers got himself a shiny new contract extension that will keep him in Green Bay until 2014. Kicker John Kasay also got himself a shiny new contract extension as well. His was for four years and he will be 42 and a few years away from qualifying for an AARP membership by they time he is done playing.
With the news out of the way, lets go to this weekends games.
Jets vs Buffalo - The Bills seem to be the sweethearts of the media right now. Well, they played a Ted Cottrell run defense, lost to Arizona (17-41), lost to Miami last week and are now facing Brett Favre. Don't fall for it people, the Bills are NOT the real deal. The Jets on the other hand seem to be stuck in an identity crisis. This will more than likely be a close one with it all depending on how many interceptions Favre throws. Despite Favres picks, Jets win 27-21.
Ravens vs Cleveland - The Browns will be going up against one of the best defenses and rank in the bottom part of all offensive categories. If the Browns defense can play like it did against the Giants and force rookie QB Joe Flacco to make mistakes, the Browns could walk away with the victory. Cleveland wins this battle 21-17.
Lions vs Chicago - At no wins and seven losses this season for the Lions, they visit the Bears in search of their first win of the year. This, however, is starting to get to the part of the season that when a team plays a winless team, they don't want to be the first to lose to them. As long as Orton doesn't put the Lions in position for easy scores, the Bears should win this one. Bears win 31-14
Cardinals vs St. Louis - Kurt Warner goes against his former team this weekend and the Cardinals are having no problems moving the ball this season. The Rams played an inept Brad Johnson when they beat the Cowboys and then reverted to their usual performance last week against the Tom Bradyless Patriots. Cardinals win 28 - 17.
Dolphins vs Denver - Denver is much like the Bills in my opinion. Except that the Bills have a much better defense than the Broncos have. If the Dolphins and league sack leader Joey Porter and the rest of the Dolphins D can get Jay Cutler uncomfortable in the pocket, they will win this game. Cutler goes from being a pretty good quarterback when he doesn't have to move his feet, to being terrible when he has to scramble. Denver also has a problem stopping the run and with Miami's new love affair with the Wildcat formation, this could really get ugly. Dolphins win 24 - 14.
Eagles vs. Seattle - The Eagles and a healthy Donovan McNabb are visiting the land of the Starbuck and the Seahawks, who are nursing several broken wings. This one clearly goes to the Eagles. You have one of the worst offenses (Seattle) and one of the better defenses (Eagles) facing each other. Unless there are lots of turnovers, Seattle will not win this game. Eagles win 20 - 10.
Patriots vs Indianapolis - The Colts are clearly not firing on all cylinders after seeing their performance last Monday night against the Titans. The Patriots on the other hand are not really doing too bad without Tom Brady. I think Matt Cassel has performed admirably, but, still tends to hold onto the ball too long. He is going against Manning and it is in the Colts' new stable in Indy...can Cassel handle Peyton and a game that the Colts really need to win? Colts win 24 - 21.
Steelers vs Washington - We've got two of the better defenses in the league going up against each other so you would expect a low score for this game. However, the Steelers seem to be having a problem keeping Ben Roethlisberger from getting sacked. The defense of the Steelers will have to clamp down hard on the Redskins to win this game. However, I think the 'Skins pull this one out with a late field goal. Washington 17 - 14.
Jaguars vs Cincinnati - Ocho, that's how many losses the Bengals have this year. Nada, is what is in the win column for the Bengals and their offense is muy frio. The Jaguars on the other hand, are having a very Chargers like season of under performing. However, this should be the game that Jacksonville should get back to .500. Jaguars win 28 - 10.
Texans vs Minnesota - The Texans have been putting some points on the board the last few games. However, they haven't won on the road yet this year. They are playing a pretty decent Vikings defense and Adrian Peterson who is averaging 4.5 yards a carry. The Vikings offense put on a pretty impressive display last week against the Bears and are looking for a better outcome this week. Vikings win 27 - 24.
Buccaneers vs Kansas City - Kansas City will be without running back Larry Johnson, because, he chose to defend his honor by spitting his drink in a womans' face. The Chiefs will lose because the Chiefs just aren't a very good football team. Tampa Bay coming off of their loss in Dallas will be able to score some points this Sunday and will walk away with the victory. Tampa wins 30 - 10.
Packers vs Tennessee - The Titans will be riding the high of just beating the Colts and a undefeated season (so far) will be tested against the Packers. The Titans are playing really good football right now and they have a defense that does not give up a lot of points. The Packers just won't be able to keep Aaron Rogers on the field long enough to score enough points to win. Titans win 28 - 21.
Cowboys vs New York Giants - Well, if Tony Romo was starting, this would have been hyped up by now and we all would have been tired of hearing it. However, it's Brad Johnson versus Eli Manning. If the Cowboys can stuff the run and keep Eli busy, they have a chance of pulling this one out in New Jersey. If Johnson all of a sudden is able to start throwing to Terrel Owens and newish Cowboy Roy Williams, they have a chance of pulling off the upset. Giants win 34 - 28.
Falcons vs Oakland - The Falcons have done a good job of helping fans forget about Mike Vick and a coach that decided to disappear into the night like an estranged husband telling his wife he was going out to get some bread and never returned. Michael Turner of LaDainian Tomlinson's back up fame has helped the Falcons have one of the best running offenses in the league. Rookie QB Matt Ryan has done a decent job this year and should have a decent game against the Raiders and their 9,675th head coach since they were in Super Bowl 37. Falcons win 31 - 15
Those are my picks for this weeks games. It will be interesting to see how some of these teams play, especially Denver and Dallas. Dallas, more than anything, with all the injuries they are having to deal with right now, could really do themselves a huge favor by beating the Giants.
So, enjoy the games and see you next week.