Last Week: 8-7
Overall: 102-60

Saints @ Falcons

After Atlanta let me down in last week’s loss to the hapless Buccaneers, there’s no chance in hell I’m allowing any possibility of the Falcons upsetting the New Orleans Saints. Atlanta owner Arthur Blank could be sticking pins into a Drew Brees voodoo doll, and the Saints could still sleepwalk through this game to a victory. I don’t quite understand why the Saints put up so much resistance to attempting to establish a lead running back, but maybe that’s just becoming less important with the way the NFL rules have changed. New Orleans is basically the Denver of the NFC since both teams are offensively constructed around an uber elite QB, several play-making pass catchers, and a three-headed running monster. The real acid test will come in next week’s Monday night match-up when New Orleans challenges the Seattle Seahawks.

Win: New Orleans Saints

Steelers @ Browns

Jason Campbell showed why he’s Jason Campbell. There’s a reason he has been on and cast aside by so many mediocre teams. Campbell folds like a cheap card table when the pressure starts to mount. As the owner of Jordan Cameron in Fantasy Football, I can wax poetic on Campbell’s inability to properly utilize his best weapon on offense, and the tight end is typically a quarterback’s best friend and safety valve when the rush is surging. Without a running game to deflect any pressure, Campbell is starting to look just mildly more appealing than Brandon Weeden—who is arguably the worst player in years to attempt to play the QB position at the NFL level. On the other end of this match-up, the Pittsburgh Steelers are letting their pride fuck with them. Mike Tomlin needs to go Marsellus Wallace on the Steelers locker room and tell them to throw the fight. An aging roster with zero cap flexibility is not a good foundation for years of success. Pittsburgh needs to trade Rapistberger and start fresh with a cheaper quarterback, but it doesn’t look like the proud Steelers are willing to embrace that probability.

Win: Pittsburgh Steelers

Buccaneers @ Lions

Schwartz

Why is Jim Schwartz still coaching the Detroit Lions? Last week’s fake FG decision was remarkably stupid and pointless when in a shitty weather game against an inferior opponent. Detroit is perennially disappointing and undisciplined. It would be interesting to see how the Lions would play being coached by someone who actually has a brain. Jim Schwartz is a douchefuck. I challenge you to find a picture where Jim Schwartz doesn’t look like a total asshole. I have to believe the Detroit Lions win despite their head coach, which is not completely unlike the situation the Tampa Bay Buccaneers find themselves in with Greg Schiano—who is obviously not the long-term answer and deserved to be fired weeks ago. Tampa Bay beat the Falcons last week, but I don’t think there will be a repeat performance unless Jim Schwartz shits himself again on live television this week. Look for another monster performance from Megatron.

Win: Detroit Lions

Vikings @ Packers

Green Bay is reeling without Aaron Rodgers, and the Packers should be desperate to win this one to keep any semblance of hope alive for the playoffs. Minnesota could have a spirited game of Rock, Paper, Scissors to decide who their quarterback will be against the Packers, and it still probably wouldn’t make the slightest bit of difference. Green Bay should be looking to take advantage of home field by grinding out tough runs with Eddie Lacy against Minnesota to punish their defense. As long as the Packers can avoid any blunders on special teams, I don’t see the Vikings staying in this game with a banged up Adrian Peterson. In the end, Green Bay just wants and needs this one more.

Win: Green Bay Packers

Chargers @ Chiefs

Maybe the Chiefs aren’t frauds. Maybe the Denver Mannings are just considerably better than the Kansas City Smiths. After a surprising start, San Diego has started to show their true colors as an incompetent, inconsistent team. With the added benefit of home-field advantage, Kansas City stands a good chance to re-establish themselves against a very weak Chargers defense. Jamaal Charles should be the focal point of the Chiefs attack this week, but I fear Kansas City might panic and abandon the run if they’re down by 10 points again. Ultimately, I trust the Chiefs defense to deliver the win.

Win: Kansas City Chiefs

Bears @ Rams

I don’t know what is more unwatchable: Chicago’s miserably long game against Baltimore in horrific conditions or this week’s match-up against the struggling Rams in St. Louis—where the city may have already given up coming the franchise. Josh McCown has displayed surprising leadership capability, which must be a welcome change of pace from surly Smokin’ Jay. Without their typical dominant defense, Chicago has been remarkably competitive each week this season, which may be a signal the franchise is confident moving forward without Cutler. The Bears should be able to control the ball and run behind Matt Forte to the win, but allowing Tavon Austin to make some big plays could swing the momentum in favor of the Rams. Since Kellen Clemens is still behind center for St. Louis, I’ll confidently punch Chicago’s ticket.

Win: Chicago Bears

Panthers @ Dolphins

Upset alert! Last week’s weird ending robbed New England of their rightful last opportunity in the red zone, which sent the Carolina Cam hype machine thrusting into a higher gear. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see the Panthers as a dominant team capable of a lengthy playoff run. Riding an all-time high in the Ron Rivera era, I would not be surprised if Miami inexplicably hangs 28 points on the Panthers unremarkable secondary. If Mike Wallace is motivated and unleashed, Carolina could really feel every second in the 60 Minutes of this match-up. But I can’t count on that since Miami could just as easily implode and fail to protect Ryan Tannehill for longer than three seconds. Cam Newton should be able to put the team on his back and run to the finish line.

Win: Carolina Panthers

Jets @ Ravens

Fuck both of these teams. If I could recuse myself and refuse to declare a winner, I would do so because I despise both franchises. While it has nothing in particular to do with this game, former Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis made news last week by offering to pay the fine for Ahmad Brooks’ clothesline on Drew Brees. I can’t say I’m surprised because Ray Lewis is used to getting away with murder on and off the football field. The only way I’m watching a moment of this week’s Jets/Ravens game is if Ray Lewis returns and stabs Rex Ryan repeatedly. I don’t care who wins, but I’ll go with Baltimore to buck the on-and-off, win-lose trend for the consistently inconsistent New York Jets.

Win: Baltimore Ravens

Jaguars @ Texans

Is there a more unappealing match-up than Chad Henne against Case Keenum? Well, pick-six extraordinaire Matt Schaub could see some nostalgia time at quarterback this week. And there’s the Titans/Raiders game coming up next as well. Jacksonville has been showing some life and resilience in the last few weeks, but Houston’s defense is too talented to let Chad Henne shred them in the air. Let the Case Keenum reign of terror continue, Gary Kubiak.

Win: Houston Texans

Titans @ Raiders

It’s Ryan Fitzpatrick versus Matt McGloin! If that doesn’t sound like an unwatchable game between two players that should not be starting NFL quarterbacks, then I don’t know how bad things have to be for you not to watch an NFL game. I’m not ashamed to say I’m picking the Raiders just because the game is home at Oakland. As a team, Tennessee is better, but it probably won’t matter since they’re forced to start Ryan Fitzpatrick. A better back-up QB plan is required next year for the Titans.

Win: Oakland Raiders

Colts @ Cardinals

It’s hard to tell whether or not Indianapolis is overrated and not that good or good and lucky to have some staple comeback wins. Andrew Luck is completely capable of carrying the Colts regardless of his surrounding talent, but it’s clear that the team has not discovered how to be consistent. With the Cardinals flying high (largely due to their recent schedule), this is a game that should be surprisingly enjoyable. I can see Arizona pulling off the minor upset if a few breaks go their way. If Arizona can bottle up Trent Richardson and Donald Brown without the extra defender in the box, then T.Y. Hilton won’t be able to connect with Luck on those large gains downfield. The wild card in this match-up will be Coby Fleener because the Cardinals have been gashed by talented tight ends. Since the Cardinals need this win more to stay in the playoff picture, I’ll put my faith in the Arizona defense.

Win: Arizona Cardinals

Cowboys @ Giants

This match-up has all the makings of classic Cowboys road meltdown. If you’ve been watching football for the past few years, you know this exact situation has happened several times already. Logic dictates the Cowboys have to win one of these games some time, but I can’t trust Jason Garrett to scheme a win and manage the final moments to secure that victory. Eli could make it easy for Dallas with a few lame duck interceptions, but it’s too much fun to root for another miraculous Giants stretch run. New York is starting to stabilize themselves after a disastrous start, and the G-Men just might be poised to make a new nightmare for Cowboys fans. The Giants are slow, plodding, and unstoppable like Michael Myers.

Win: New York Giants

Broncos @ Patriots

Without question, this will be the best game of the 2013 NFL season. Breaking down this game ahead of time seems meaningless. Both franchises aren’t without their flaws, but it is remarkable how evenly matched these teams are on the field. A lot has been made about Peyton Manning’s difficulty in bad weather games, but Denver has positioned themselves well as long as they can keep New England’s running game in check. Just sit back and enjoy yet another chapter in the Brady vs. Manning book.

Win: Denver Broncos

49ers @ Redskins

When does the level of toxicity in the District of Columbia reach its maximum capacity? Robert Griffin III is laying the groundwork for the Shannahans to be fired or not have their contracts renewed at the very least. Even though Mike Shannahan’s red face is a perfect fit for a team named the Redskins, the team has shown very little improvement over the past few years since they’ve remained largely mediocre and only capable of around an 8-8 effort each season. Washington already didn’t have a very talented pass catching core and they’ll be without most of their weapons this week, which could mean a very run-centric game plan against the stout, highly athletic 49ers defense. I don’t think that will play out very well for Washington.

Win: San Francisco 49ers

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