Hey guys, due to more pressing concerns (I didn't know there was such a thing until now), I'm forced to give you the shorthand version of this week's Winners. Please forgive the abbreviated format, as my time and attention are needed in a far more important area right now. But don't fret, there has been as much thought put into these choices as there has been every week; but considering that these columns usually take me over three hours to complete, I just don't have the time available to lay out everything in detail. Please forgive me. We'll be back to normal next week.
We managed a lovely 9-4-1 record last week and after 10 weeks, these Winners rank ahead of 99% of the world and are still a half dozen games better than the pros in Las Vegas. To the games!
The Dolphins are better than they showed last week in their loss. The Bills are worse than they showed last week in their loss.
THE PICK: DOLPHINS
The Falcons were the least impressive 8-0 team I can think of, but they're still better than the tumbling Cardinals.
THE PICK: FALCONS
Cleveland's not as terrible as they've been in the past, but Dallas' defense is still a top ten unit.
THE PICK: COWBOYS
Expect Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson to eat good with Green Bay hamstrung on defense, but the Packers' sheer firepower should be enough to overcome it.
THE PICK: PACKERS
The Scott Pioli / Romeo Crennel Chiefs remind me of the Bill Bavasi / Jim Riggleman Mariners.
THE PICK: BENGALS
The Jets are worse than the Rams. Let that sink in, Rex.
THE PICK: RAMS
If you took away my picks in eagles games over the last two years, i might literally be the best NFL prognosticator on the planet. Not really, but still.
THE PICK: REDSKINS
This is one of those games where I default to the home team. i don't think Tampa is as good as they've appeared over the last month, and I think the Panthers are still capable of making a nice run at the end of the season if they can ever figure out how to use their personnel.
THE PICK: PANTHERS
This week, the Texans become the most heavily favored team of the year so far (-15.5) as they host the Jags. I still expect Houston to cover.
THE PICK: TEXANS
remember when the Saints were the only team in the NFL without a win and had lost to the Chiefs, Rams, and Redskins? Now they're five point favorites on the road and actually have a sniff at the playoffs. Also, how much fun is Drew Brees gonna have against the worst pass defense in the NFL? A lot. He's gonna have a lot of fun.
THE PICK: SAINTS
The Broncos are now the #1 team in the league by Weighted DVOA. Peyton Manning and John Fox, man.
THE PICK: BRONCOS
The Colts are 6-3, but they're not a 6-3 team. If they were in the NFC, they'd be lucky to have three wins so far. Think that's crazy? Consider that the Colts rank 27th in DVOA, 27th in Weighted DVOA, and dead last in Defensive DVOA. There are like three good teams in the AFC and everyone else is practically the Jaguars. Unfortunately for Indy, they're traveling to play one of those three good teams.
The record say these teams have a 13-5 combined record but again, AFC, you guys. It would figure that these two teams would pick this year to stop being good. Will still both probably win 10 games. Gross. Anyhow, no Ben Roethlisberger, no chance, unless Joe Flacco gift-wraps a couple of scores for Pitt.
THE PICK: RAVENS
It would've been interesting to see what this game would look like with both teams utilizing their starting quarterbacks. As it stands, the statuses of both Jay Cutler and Alex Smith are up in the air with concussions and I think the 49ers have more to fall back on than the Bears do. Too bad, too, because not only would this be one of the NFC's great matchups this year, it would help the Seahawks on a number of levels if Chicago won.
THE PICK: 49ERS
Jacson's 2012 record: 96-48-1 (.667)
Vegas' 2012 record: 89-54-2 (.614)