Locks of the Week:
DALLAS -3.5 over St. Louis
The Cowboys left a lot to be desired in last week's game against the Chiefs, but as we saw last night, Kansas City's defense can do that to people. I'm also not sure the Rams are very good. Last week's seven-point loss to Atlanta makes the game look closer than it actually was. The Rams aren't succeeding on the ground and aren't stopping teams from scoring despite a good pass rush.
SAN FRANCISCO -10.5 over Indianapolis
This spread probably looks too high for the casual fan. “Andrew Luck and the Colts offense is good and now they just acquired Trent Richardson. There’s no way they lose by 11 points or more.” Be the fish and take the points. I’ll take the pissed-off head coach with the great defensive line that will be making Luck’s life a living hell for four quarters.
CINCINNATI +1.5 over Green Bay
Everyone loves offense. I'll take the defense and an offense that's good enough to score 27 points against a middling Packers group. That is all.
Reggie: Green Bay
Trap Game of the Week:
Detroit +1.5 over WASHINGTON
The read option was the reason the Redskins were a serious offensive threat last year. It's a problem if they're not calling those plays in an effort to save RG3's health. The only time Washington has scored in the first two games is when the opposing defense has let up after gaining a big lead. Meanwhile, the Redskins can't stop anyone's offense, but they faced two really good ones. Will Detroit have enough offense if Reggie Bush sits out or is less than 100 percent? I think they will, but as you can see I’m not completely convinced.
Rest of the Picks:
N.Y. Giants +1.5 over CAROLINA
The Giants can't get out of their own way, but Carolina has the anti-Al Davis motto. Ron Rivera knows how to “just lose, baby” as evident by Carolina’s 2-14 record in one-score games with him at the helm. The Giants won in Carolina easily last year without Hakeem Nicks and Ahmad Bradshaw and not much has changed since then.
BALTIMORE +2.5 over Houston
Aren't Ravens fans so happy their team gave Joe Flacco that fat new contract? Their offense has looked so good thus far (sarcasm font)… It’s not all Joe's fault. The receiving talent outside of Torrey Smith grades out to a D. Wait … it is Joe's fault because the Ravens could've kept Anquan Boldin if they hadn't paid Joe so much money. But when you can shake up an offense that looked so good on the way to a Super Bowl, you have to do it. After all that, I'm picking them because Houston really should be 0-2. Their defense hasn't looked good and Matt Schaub is due for one of his duds. And I don’t care that Ray Rice might be out because Bernard Pierce looks just as good. (Yes, I said that.) Unfortunately, Vanilla Ice will not be performing at halftime.
San Diego +3.5 over TENNESSEE
I guess I'm on the San Diego bandwagon? Mike McCoy seems to have breathed some life into this team, but how the hell does an offensive lineman get a concussion in practice?!? What kind of hard-hitting shit is going on that a concussion happens in practice? That's just stupid.
Reggie: San Diego
Tampa Bay +7.5 over NEW ENGLAND
No one is sure if Rob Gronkowski is playing and no one is sure if New England's offense will improve much when he's back. The Buccaneers are about to explode, but they've still only lost two games by a combined three points.
Reggie: New England
MINNESOTA -6 over Cleveland
“Brian Hoyer hands off to Willis McGahee” are not the words that Browns' fans were expecting to hear at this point in the season. Minnesota's not that good, but I jumped off the Cleveland bandwagon after last week's effort in Baltimore. They couldn't score then or the week before and it only got worse with Brandon Weeden's injury and the trading of Trent Richardson.
Arizona +7.5 over NEW ORLEANS
First, a rant about hamstring injuries: I've had them. I'm not a professional athlete, but I'm in good shape. The bottom line is, you don't rush back from them. I don't care if you're Mr. T or Larry Fitzgerald. They take longer to heal than you think and they're easy to re-injure once you have even the slightest tear. I really don't understand why athletes always try to rush back and teams let it happen. Fitzgerald would have been much more ready to go this week had he not played on an injured hamstring last week. He obviously didn't add much from playing. That shouldn't be a surprise because you're slower and more hesitant with this specific injury. These guys never learn. As for the game, the Saints don't appear to be a juggernaut despite two wins and the Cardinals are the right amount of competitive to keep this at a touchdown or under.
Reggie: New Orleans
MIAMI -1.5 over Atlanta
Maybe Miami is good? They historically don't play well at home (14-18 in the previous four season), but Atlanta has no running game with Steven Jackson out to go along with the gimpy Roddy White. Maybe Miami needs to work out ticket packages like this one, which seem to work in the state of Florida, in order to get a full house. My head hurts just thinking about this game. The final straw was tackle Sam Baker being ruled out for Atlanta. Matt Ryan is going to be in danger all game long. I guess I'll take Miami.
N.Y. JETS -2 over Buffalo
It's a battle we'll see in the AFC East for years to come: Geno vs. E.J. It brings back memories of Kelly vs. O'Brien, I'm sure. As with the Bengals game, I always feel the good defense can make a good offense look bad more often than a bad defense continues to make a bad offense look bad. If you can't get through all those big words, take the Jets.
Jacksonville +19.5 over SEATTLE
I doubt cops will dress up as Jaguars fans to go undercover this week. I can’t give you an elaborate explanation for why Jacksonville will cover the spread. They’re terrible. This is all I have to offer: There have been 12 instances in NFL history when the spread been 19 points or more. Underdogs have covered the spread 10 of 12 times. I just wouldn’t advise using real American dollars on betting Jacksonville.
PITTSBURGH +2.5 over Chicago
I’ve taken every home underdog this week without realizing it until now. The Bears have squeaked through two wins and they might grab a third against a wounded Steelers team. I think the Steelers have at least one good stand in them before the melt away into a 6-10 season. Sunday’s the night.
DENVER -14.5 over Oakland
The Broncos scored 49 and 41 points respectively in their first two games. Oakland’s not holding them under 40 either. Can Oakland score 26 or more points? I think not.
This Week: 1-0
Reggie’s Picks: 16-16-1