NFL PICKS WEEK 8

This week’s slate of picks is highlighted by highly anticipated games between the Packers and the Jets, and the Saints and the Steelers. Want to be a guest picker? E-mail [email protected]

(RL) Rory Leland

(WA) Will Andreycak

 

Green Bay Packers @ New York Jets

Back-to-back losses to Washington and Miami leave me with far less confidence in Green Bay than I had when writing last week’s picks. While their Super Bowl contention is up in the air at this point, the Jets’ chances are looking better than ever. A revitalized LaDanian Tomlinson has cemented New York’s ground game, which, going into the bye week was ranked second in the league. Going by the age old “run the ball, stop the run” winning formula, the Jets come into this one with a 5-1 record.

The Packers’ underachieving is starting to become a trend. Last year they were considered contenders to make the Super Bowl, only to finish the year 8-8 and out of the playoffs. Sitting currently at 3-3, are we seeing a repeat of mediocrity? It’s a shame that such a talented quarterback as Aaron Rodgers isn’t getting the support around him to catapult the team into the elite level they have the potential to reach.

Pick:

(RL) New York Jets

(WA) New York Jets

 

Minnesota Vikings @ New England Patriots

The impressive 23-20 victory over the Ravens silenced any critics — such as myself — concerned about whether the offense would be functioning as well without the deep threat of Randy Moss. Deion Branch filled in seamlessly, picking up right where he left off when he left in 2005. The defense, although inconsistent, has shown signs of progress and with the young players in place — Jermaine Cunningham has looked really good — should be a top defense in a few years.

For all three of my readers — mom, dad and my editor — my hatred of Brett Favre might have slipped out a little. A lot. But even though he’s the worst, Minnesota is still one of the most talented, although disappointing, teams in the league. They have talent at every position, it just hasn’t translated to many wins. Randy Moss will be sure to show up for this one, but will it be enough? Probably not.

Pick:

(RL) New England Patriots

(WA) New England Patriots

 

Tennessee Titans @ San Diego Chargers

Right after I pick the Chargers to beat the Patriots they go out and lose to St. Louis. Really? I still think they matchup well with the Patriots, but if they lose I’m calling a mulligan.

Unfortunately, San Diego doesn’t matchup very favorably with Tennessee. Sporting a top five defense and the almighty Chris Johnson, the Titans could make some noise in the future as long as Vince Young plays within himself and doesn’t go back to his 2007 form.

Pick:

(RL) Tennessee Titans

(WA) San Diego Chargers

 

Pittsburgh Steelers @ New Orleans Saints

Ben Roethlisberger came back in midseason form. Already looking like the best team in the league, Pittsburgh just got that much better. At this point, who could really beat them?

The only challenges left for the Steelers are week 10 versus New England, week 13 at Baltimore, and week 15 versus the Jets. The rest is a cupcake schedule.

The Steelers’ defense is just too good — I’ve got them finishing 14-2 right now. By the way, search on YouTube “Troy Polamalu Superman tackle” and then tell me he’s not the best defensive player in football.

Pick:

(RL) Pittsburgh Steelers

(WA) New Orleans Saints

 

Houston Texans @ Indianapolis Colts

It took a 231-yard game from Arian Foster to beat the Colts the first time in Houston. This time it’s on Indianapolis’ turf, under the bright lights of Monday Night Football, and Peyton Manning is looking for revenge. Any questions?

One thing people forget about the week one loss to Houston is that Manning threw for 433 yards and 3 touchdowns. Which seems more repeatable: 200 yards from Arian Foster or 400 yards from Manning? As bad as the Colts’ run defense is, the Texan’s pass defense matches its awfulness. Look for a big day from Manning and the Colts running away with this one.

Pick:

(RL) Indianapolis Colts

(WA) Indianapolis Colts