At this point in the season, I’m looking for anything positive to grab hold of. After picking perfectly for three or four weeks, I seem to have fallen into a funk lately, especially in the Upset category.

So when I found a glimmer of hope, I grabbed it. I have finally found a trend that must be the culprit behind my recent demise in prognostication mastery! (How’s that for tongue twister?)

You see, when I was doing great, I was also picking against the experts on a regular basis, with at least three or four disagreements with the Vegas odds makers every week. Unfortunately, since I have been in agreement with them over the past several weeks, my record has dropped like a Led Zeppelin (a little ironic rock and roll humor, there).

Led Zeppelin

Good news for sports fans in the nose bleed seats. I have picked three games differently than the experts this week! Which, by way of my logic so clearly stated above, means that we’ll be back on track this week. That’s right folks, we can carve these predictions in stone this week!

NFL Football

This week’s Lock of the Week (8-2).

Quite honestly, I had a difficult time picking a single game to place into this category this week. The way every team has been playing lately, or the lack of consistency by any team, has made this a difficult category indeed.

Have no fear. I have found a contest that I am willing to risk my 8-2 record on. The winless Oakland Raiders at the up-and-down San Diego Chargers.

If the Chargers that we saw during the first quarter of the season show up, this will be a lock and a half! That San Diego team had all of the earmarks of a playoff team that might even challenge the Broncos for the division title.

And then they disappeared, sometimes completely (remember their trip to Miami, when they obviously went to the wrong stadium).

Fortunately for Chargers fans, they are taking on the Raiders, a team that has mastered the art of losing. Even when they have played well (for Raiders’ standards), they have found ways to give the game away.

The Chargers have reached the point of desperation. If they lose the games that they should win (e.g. Raiders), they will have no chance of grabbing a wildcard spot. They need this win.

And because they need this win, I think they’ll come out focused and prepared to blow the Raiders away. Look for a double-digit Charger victory!

Chargers Helmet

This week’s Upset of the Week (3-7).

Here’s the magical category I was telling you about. Lately I’ve been forced to choose one particular game because it was the only upset that I had picked. Fortunately, I’ve got three to choose from this week.

And although I hope I’m wrong about Seattle winning at KC, and I don’t care if I’m right about the Panthers winning at home, I’m going with the Minnesota Vikings over the Chicago Bears.

I know, we’re talking about the Vikings, a team that became a shell of itself when it lost its monster RB – AP. Yet, somehow they have managed to find themselves still in the playoff hunt (sort of) at 4-5. There is no logical reason to believe they will grab one of the wildcard spots, yet here they are.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Bears, the team that many expected to win their division this season, has turned so pathetic that they have yet to win a home game and have lost two games in a row where they have allowed more than fifty points to the opposing team. Not exactly the record they were hoping to grab this year.

Until Da’ Bears figure out how to keep the scoring allowed down to a reasonable number (like, half of what it is now), there isn’t a single team in the league that shouldn’t beat them. Yes, even the Minnesota Vikings!!

Vikings Helmet

This week’s Game of the Week (5-5).

Once again, there are several games to choose from in this category. The Lions at the Cardinals will be a battle for the NFC #1 spot. The Eagles at the Packers will certainly be a high scoring event for fans to enjoy, not to mention the playoff implications involved.

However, there is one game that seems to have it all. The New England Patriots at the Indianapolis Colts!

This one has playoff implications (potential tie-breaker for a #1 or #2 playoff position), features two teams capable of lighting up the scoreboard, features two top-five QBs and quite simply should be entertaining to sports fans for sixty minutes.

But how to pick a winner? Should I go with the experienced future hall of fame QB or the up-and-coming future hall of fame QB? Should I go with the team that beat the Broncos or the team that is hot one week and cold the next? Should I go with the team with red-hot WRs or the team with the top-dog TE that has re-gained his form?

Or should I just flip a coin? It seems that the coin flip would be just as accurate as any of the other choices so why not?

Okay, here’s what I’m going with. The Patriots will win their division, I don’t care what Dolphin fans think. The Colts will win their division, pretty much uncontested. Only one of these two teams will get a first round bye, since the Broncos will need a total collapse to fall to #3.

Both teams have offenses that are capable of lighting up the scoreboard. Both teams have defenses that have shown glimpses of brilliance while occasionally falling on their faces.

So when all else fails, go with the home team, especially when that home team is Indianapolis.

In a game that will not be a blowout, and may very well go down to the wire, the Indianapolis Colts will hold off the New England Patriots for a hard-fought victory, temporarily taking over the #2 seed in the AFC.

Colts Helmet

Now get out your hammer and chisel and carve those in stone, for the NFL gods are with us this time!!!


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