NFL: Week 14 Picks

Aaron LiebmanAnalyst IDecember 4, 2008

Okay, 12-4 last week, but with the matchups we were given on Thanksgiving that isn't such a feet to totally brag about.  Let's start with tonight's game.

San Diego over Oakland: Wow, the San Diego Chargers finally get back on a winning track.  At 4-8, they are surprisingly second place in their division.  Well, that's because one of the teams below them is their opponent tonight.  The Chargers might be apathetic knowing they're all but eliminated from playoff contention, but even their apathy will be enough to outlast the Raiders.


Minnesota over Detroit: That's right.  It's a must see game.  And it's not just the thrill of the possibility of seeing a team finish 0-16.  It's the possibility that it might not and here's why.  The last time the Lions were 0-12 (wow, how many teams can you say that about) was 2001, and then they got their first win.  And who was that first win against?  No, not the local JV team. 

It was the Minnesota Vikings in one of Dennis Green's last games as head coach.  Could history repeat itself?  I don't think so.  That Lions team was a group that lost a few close games and went down to the wire every now and then.  With this team, fans will be hitting the parking lot by halftime.

Dallas over Pittsburgh: The only teams to play each other three times in the Super Bowl.  And it could actually happen again this year.  Dallas is finding their form again.  Granted, they did just play Seattle and San Francisco but wins are wins.  I think they have their confidence back now.

New Orleans over Atlanta: The Saints may be the NFL's best last place team.  Not really something to be proud of, especially since they have one of the best offenses in football.  Their defense has actually improved as well.  So what is the problem in the Big Easy?  They're at home this week and I think they can muster an upset over suddenly Hotlanta.

Buffalo over Miami: Once upon a time the Buffalo Bills were 4-0.  That seems a long time ago.  The Bills have been so bad they've actually been kicked out of the United States and have to play at home in Toronto.  It'll be even colder than what it is in Buffalo which should benefit the Bills.

Denver over Kansas City: It seems almost anti climactic that the Broncos can clinch their division with a win over the lowly Chiefs.  But remember, the Chiefs did beat the Broncos earlier this season.  But also remember, they've won only one other time, which was last week against the Raiders.

Arizona over St. Louis: I take it back.  It's even more anti climactic for the Cardinals to clinch their division against the Rams.  Sure, they've lost two in a row to NFC East teams, but this sure ain't the NFC East.  But at least you can see the Cardinals clinch a division, something that only happens about every 30 years or so.

Baltimore over Washington: Two teams we all doubted would be in the playoff running this late in the season.  But I think Baltimore has more of an edge here.

Carolina over Tampa Bay: FINALLY!  A Monday Night game that deserves primetime.  The winner of this game is a likely candidate to clinch the NFC South and the second seed in the conference.  I'm tempted to go with Tampa Bay and their defense, but Carolina is at home and played a great game against the Packers last week.  It'll be close, but most important, it'll be worth watching.


Giants over Philadelphia: Adversity seems to only strengthen the Giants.  No Strahan, no problem.  No Osi, who cares?  Could it be the same with Plaxico "Dirty Harry" Burress?  Even at 11-1, this is a crucial game for the G-men.  It'll prove their lasting capabilities in the playoffs without their number one gun.

Jets over San Francisco: Brettie and the Jets got bushwhacked at home last week, yet still hold a game lead in the division.  Sure, the 49ers beat the Bills last week, but this is a Jets team looking to bounce back.


Chicago over Jacksonville: Chicago still has a shot at the playoffs while the Jags join the Chargers as A.F.C. busts.  The Jags just can't seem to do anything right lately.  Well, I take that back.  The center at least remembered where his quarterback was this week and didn't hike it to air.

Tennessee over Cleveland: Looks like we won't get to witness that soap opera of Derek Anderson competing for a job next year.  This game might be worth watching only to see the progress of whoever the Browns signed off the street.  I bet they're kicking themselves for not signing Daunte Culpepper.

Green Bay over Houston: This actually does have the makings of an upset.  Packer fans have already declared Aaron Rodgers a bust and are wondering what might have been with Brett Favre leading the Jets to first place.  In Houston though, expectations are never high, so it's pretty much the status quo.  The difference...Matt Schaub is starting for the Texans.  When are they going to realize that he is a bust and start Sage Rosenfels?  This Sunday will provide more evidence to that fact.


Indianapolis over Cincinnati: Don't look now, but the Colts, left for dead after the first month of the season, has become the hottest team in the AFC.  Don't expect for them to cool down at least this week.

New England over Seattle: Wow did this seem like a good game back in August.  But now it's just another chance for the Seahawks to embarrass themselves and coach Mike Holmgren.  It's gotten so bad that heir apparent Jim Mora doesn't even want to coach there next year.