NFL GAMES OF THE WEEK – WEEK FIFTEEN

15Dec12

Another week, another two out of three correct.  It should have been three out of three.  As you may recall, last week I rattled off four games that was I picking as upsets.  Then I had to go and choose the one that I got wrong as my pick for the week.

Oh well, no sense crying over spilled…..oh never mind!  I simply need to stay away from the Jets for the rest of the season!

Let’s see if I can break my three game slide in the “Upset” category.

NFL Football

This week’s Lock of the Week (13-2).

Well it’s official.  I’ve come full circle on my hometown Cardinals.  They began the season winning four straight.  Since then, they’ve lost nine straight.  Let’s look at the bright side.  That amazing stat has put them in the record books!  No other team in the history of the NFL has achieved that feat.

Now we have the Detroit Lions coming to town.  This is a team that I had high hopes for when the season began.  Instead, they have become inconsistent on both sides of the line of scrimmage, resulting in a five game losing streak of their own.

So how, you may ask, can I possibly pick either one of these 4-9 teams as a “Lock” for the week?

Simple.  The Cardinals haven’t scored a touchdown the past two weeks, losing a pathetic game to a pathetic Jets team 7-6 before being utterly humiliated in every fashion at Seattle 58-0.  If you watched the game, you know it was not as close as the score indicated!

With the rookie Ryan Lindley starting once again this week, there is no way that anyone could possibly pick this Arizona team to come out victorious.

Detroit wins this one going away, a fitting term to use to describe a Cardinals game.

This week’s Upset of the Week (7-8).

There are a couple of games that could easily end up as upsets this week, but I’m going with the only one that I ended up disagreeing with the odds-makers on.  I’m taking the N.Y. Giants over the host Atlanta Falcons.

I know I’m taking a risk, as the Giants are not the most consistent team in the league.  However, I’ve been preaching all season long that the Falcons are not as good as their record indicates, having squeaked out victories several times against inferior teams that had outplayed them.

With the lowly Carolina Panthers exposing Atlanta’s weaknesses last week, you can believe that the Giants, a team fighting for the NFC East title, will take advantage and come out swinging.  They cannot afford to lose any more games, or they may very well fall from division winner to out of the playoffs.

With the Falcons having locked up a playoff spot already, I have to believe the Giants will be playing with more desperation.  In the end, that may very well be the difference.

I see the Giants taking an early lead, and then holding the Falcons off in the end to come home with the W!

This week’s Game of the Week (13-2).

This came down to two games this week.  Before last week’s games were played, I had my eye on the Denver-Baltimore game as a possibility for this week’s GOTW.

However, having watched the Patriots completely dismantle the Texans last week, I cannot very well pass up this week’s game with the 49ers.  After all, this may very well be a preview to this year’s Super Bowl.

You don’t think so?  Let’s take a closer look.

Who is the best team in the AFC right now?  Well, if you go by record alone, you’d say that the 11-2 Houston Texans are the top team.  Oh wait, the Patriots just spanked them last Monday night 42-14.

Well how about the 10-3 Denver Broncos.  After all, Peyton and his posse are really clicking right now.  However, if they end up tied with the Patriots, New England would win the tie-breaker by virtue of their week five victory over the Broncos.

Besides, New England simply does not lose in December.

Tom Brady

How about the NFC.  Which team is the top dog right now?  You may argue that the Packers have come together over the past several weeks.  I still don’t think they’re consistent enough, as demonstrated in week 12 when they visited the Giants and were completely destroyed 38-10.

I’ve already made it clear that I don’t believe the Atlanta Falcons are the real deal and that the Giants are not quite consistent enough.

So who does that leave us with?  The San Francisco 49ers.  Granted, they don’t have the best record in the league at 9-3-1.  For some reason, St. Louis always seems to have their number, and this season was no different.  But take away the two games with the Rams and San Francisco is 8-2.

49ers with Smith

So here we are in week 15, with arguably the best teams in each conference meeting in Foxboro.  With New England having wrapped up the AFC East division title already, you may think there would be a letdown in their locker room.

Don’t count on it.  They have historically been a team that worked out the kinks over the first few weeks, and then turned the engines to full throttle through the second half of the season in preparation for the playoffs.  This year has been no different.

This may very well be the biggest test of the season for the Patriots.  The 49ers come to town with one of the stingiest defensive units in recent history.  They also cannot afford to lose any more games, with Seattle breathing down their necks for the NFC West division title.

Look for this one to be extremely physical, but by no means a defensive, low-scoring affair.  Oh the defense will be incredible, but there will be points scored.  The only question is whether or not the 49ers will be able to score enough to come away with the victory.

I don’t believe they will.  New England takes this in a hard fought 27-20 victory.

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