Eric’s Week 3 NFL Picks

Remember, use my picks to wager $$$ at your own risk. If you lose, I had nothing to do with it. If you win beaucoup $$$, a 10% tip would be cool.  But, I’m realistic. This is just for your entertainment…or not, and for me to keep my sports “mojo” going until “I’m back in the saddle”. Remember the league’s unofficial motto…“ON ANY GIVEN SUNDAY, MONDAY, THURSDAY, FRIDAY OR SATURDAY“…………

For us lovers of football, enjoy this “little ditty”  from 1986’s WILDCATS starring Goldie Hawn and some “up & comers.”

Week 2: 8-8 SEASON TOTAL: 20-12

SAN FRANCISCO (0-2) -2.5 @ KANSAS CITY (2-0) O/U 37 pts
-Mike Singletary’s winless Niners are much improved but killing themselves with turnovers. Four of them last week against the champion Saints including a bad “high school-like snap” giving the Saints a safety. Crucial since the Niners lost in overtime, 25-22. QB Alex Smith improving. SF’s defense, playing like “Samurai Mike” used to with Da Bears, ranked fourth in the league. The undefeated Chiefs have some good chemistry going with the New England Patriots West coaching staff. Gotta be since they’re 2-0 with the fourth worst offense in the league. Playing and beating Cleveland helps. 49ERS  (31-10, CHIEFS)

DETROIT (0-2) +11.5 @ MINNESOTA (0-2) 43 pts
-Vikings with major issues at wide receiver and the right side of that offensive line giving Brett Favre second thoughts about coming back for one more go ‘round. Lions will be without QB Matthew Stafford again with a separated shoulder suffered in week one. Shaun Hill takes over. Lions much improved on both sides of the ball. Minnesota lost their opener at New Orleans, 14-9. Vikes lost last week to Miami, 14-10. If things work out, Lions might win, 14-11. Nah. Vikings still better and Percy Harvin’s back to help Favre out. VIKINGS (24-10, VIKINGS)

BUFFALO (0-2) +14.5 @ NEW ENGLAND (1-1) 42.5 pts
-The Bills are BAD! The Patriots are MAD! Plenty of Brady to Welker/Moss. PATRIOTS (38-30, PATRIOTS)

ATLANTA (1-1) +3.5 @ NEW ORLEANS (2-0) 49.5 pts
-Thanks to this game, maybe us Los Angelenos will be spared from watching the Giants again. This will be a shoot-out in the Big Easy. Since Brees has come to New Orleans, the Saints are 7-1 against the Dirty Birds. Both teams with issues in their backfields tending to injuries. Matt Ryan and the Falcons have to win this one if they want to dethrone the Saints in the NFC South. Not yet. SAINTS (27-24, FALCONS ot)

TENNESSEE (1-1) +3 @ NY GIANTS of NEW JERSEY (1-1) 42.5 pts
-Titans had seven turnovers, including two picks and a fumble by QB Vince Young who was replaced by ex-Giant Kerry Collins, in last week’s 19-11 loss to Pittsburgh. Young will start. Meanwhile, the G-Men lost the MANNING BOWL as Eli was outplayed by Peyton in Indy last week, 38-14. The Giants are just bad on both sides of the ball right now. They can’t run and Eli has issues because they have to throw to have a chance. That defense allowed huge yardage on the ground to a Colts team that usually can’t run to save its life. Chris Johnson will look to pad some stats. TITANS (29-10, TITANS)

PITTSBURGH (2-0) -2.5 @ TAMPA BAY (2-0) 33 pts
-No Ben Roethlisberger at QB for the Steelers. No problem. No Byron Leftwich. No problem. No Dennis Dixon. No problem. Pitt’s now down to old man Charlie Batch. They better get Terry Bradshaw ready in the bullpen. It’s all about the Steel Curtain Defense. They go as safety Troy “Samson” Polamalu goes. He’s a beast. If he’s out, the Steelers are a bad team. Second-year QB Josh Freeman playing very well for the undefeated Buccaneers. Four TD tosses against just one pick so far this season. Steelers will bring the noise on defense and pound away with Rashard Mendenhall on offense. STEELERS. (38-13, STEELERS)

CINCINNATI (1-1) -3 @ CAROLINA (0-2) 38 pts
-I LOVE A GOOD CAT FIGHT! Too bad this won’t be one. Rookie Notre Dame QB Jimmy Clausen taking over as the starter for Carolina and an ineffective Matt Moore. His counter-part is former USC QB Carson Palmer. Palmer and the Bengals looked solid in last week’s 15-10 home win over the Ravens. Palmer, Chad Ocho-Cinco, Terrell “TO” Owens, Cedric Benson. Too many weapons for the Panthers. BENGALS (20-7, BENGALS)

CLEVELAND (0-2) +10.5 @ BALTIMORE (1-1) 37 pts
-”New” Browns and “Old” Browns together for another “Family Feud” which is just too one-sided. Ravens haven’t allowed a single touchdown so far. Ray Lewis and that defense are dialed-in, especially with the bad calls against Cincy last week. RAVENS (24-17, RAVENS)

DALLAS (0-2) +3 @ HOUSTON (2-0) 47.5 pts
-The “Lone Star State Squabble” looks more and more like Houston’s ready to take. The undefeated Texans are coming of age before our eyes. They did away with division foe Indianapolis in the season-opener and came from 17 points behind to beat the Redskins in overtime in DC. QB Matt Schaub threw for three yards shy of 500 in last week’s win. WR Andre Johnson hurt an ankle but came back to grab the game-tying TD late in the 4th. RB Arian Foster had 237 rushing yards in the win over the Colts. Meanwhile, Dallas, a pre-season Super Bowl favorite, is terrible in all fazes of the game. The most over-rated and over-hyped QB in league history, Tony Romo, is having issues because the Cowboys can’t run the football gaining 38 total yards in last week’s 27-20 loss, at home, to the Bears. The Cowboy defense only has two sacks so far. They could be in danger of going 0-3 and done. Texans are ready to take another step. TEXANS (27-13, COWBOYS)

WASHINGTON (1-1) -3.5 @ ST. LOUIS (0-2) 38 pts
-Hard to believe the Redskins are a worse rushing team than the Cowboys. But, they are. They couldn’t run the ball to kill some clock with a 17-point lead and ended up losing 30-27 in overtime to Houston. QB Donovan McNabb tossed for over 400 yards but that makes Washington too one-dimensional. Remedy for Washington on the way. The young, improving and still winless Rams allow the third most rushing yards in the league, including giving up 145 yards to Oakland’s Darren McFadden in last week’s 16-14 loss to the Raiders. Although Rams rookie QB Sam Bradford is still getting his feet wet with four touchdown throws against five interceptions, St. Louis could easily be 2-0. So, they’re in every game even though the Rams have the league’s second worst offense. But, the remedy, the Redskins, who have the worst overall defense giving up almost 450 yards a game. Was thinking Redskins. However, the Rams have this All-Pro RB named Steven Jackson. They’re at home too. RAMS (30-16, RAMS)

PHILADELPHIA (1-1) -3 @ JACKSONVILLE (1-1) 45 pts
-You can’t teach an OLD DOG new tricks, so you let him work the magic he’s known for. No. Not that. I’m talking about football. Michael Vick’s earned the Eagles starting QB job with his play the last two weeks. He led Philly to a 35-32 win at Detroit last week in his first start since 2006. He’s a got a big running back in LaSean McCoy to hand off to. McCoy rumbled for 120 yards and three touchdowns last week. Jaguars were torched by San Diego last week. QB David Garrard having issues as is RB Maurice Jones-Drew. Sure it’s in J’Ville. But Vick’s got the hot hand. EAGLES (28-3, EAGLES)

INDIANAPOLIS (1-1) -5.5 @ DENVER (1-1) 48.5 pts
-After opening with a loss at Houston, Colts QB Peyton Manning took it to brother Eli’s Giants winning 38-14. Peyton’s thrown for almost 700 yards and six touchdowns without an interception. Broncos beat Seattle at home last week, 31-14. They have to deal with a depleted secondary and the prospects of getting sliced and diced by Manning. They’ll have heavy hearts as well with the loss of teammate Kenny McKinley who apparently took his own life last week. COLTS (27-13, COLTS)

OAKLAND (1-1) +4.5 @ ARIZONA (1-1) 39.5 pts
-Raiders benched ineffective QB Jason Campbell trailing St. Louis 7-3 at halftime of last weeks home-opener against the Rams replacing him with Bruce Gradkowski who engineered a come from behind 16-14 win. He seems to have complete control of the Raiders who look like a contender with him calling the signals. Darren McFadden rushed for 145 yards and, although they gave up 140 yards on the ground last week, their defense is top 10. Cardinals got blitzed in Atlanta last week, 41-7.  Wonder if they miss Matt Leinart only because Derek Anderson is completely ineffective. Arizona will have to try to get Tim Hightower and Beenie Wells going on the ground to win. RAIDERS (24-23, CARDINALS)

SAN DIEGO (1-1) -5 @ SEATTLE (1-1) 44.5 pts
-New coach Pete Carroll had the Seahawks looking impressive in their season-opening win at home over the 49ers. It all came crashing down last week in Denver losing to the Broncos, 31-14. Although Vincent Jackson’s probably done with the Chargers, the Bolts looked like the Super Bowl contender all experts believe they are rebounding from their season opening loss at KC by dismantling Jacksonville in last week’s home-opener, 38-13. QB Phillip Rivers is elite passing for 334 yards and three scores. Rookie RB Ryan Matthews was hurt and doubtful today. Mike Tolbert replaced him adding a pair of touchdowns. The Bolts defense was superior picking off four passes, two by Antoine Cason. Since it’s in the Emerald City, it’ll be tough. Rivers will throw a game-winner late. CHARGERS (27-20, SEAHAWKS)

NY JETS of NEW JERSEY (1-1) +2 @ MIAMI (2-0) 35 pts (SNF)
-This is going to be a brawl! The Jets looked like a contender after letting QB Mark Sanchez toss a few down field. He tossed three TD’s in the Jets win over reigning AFC East champ New England last week. RB LaDanian Tomlinson looked like his old self feeling healthy for the first time in two years. Bet the Chargers would love to have LT back. The defense will be without Darrelle Revis who’s pulled a hamstring. The other ex-Bolt Antonio Cromartie replaced him and did quite well against Randy Moss. Miami’s 2-0 after halting the Vikings last week in the Twin Cities, 14-10. That Dolphin defense is as ferocious as the Jets making Brett Favre wish he had retired once and for all. On Offense, QB Chad Henne has the big arm tossing to new toy Brandon Marshall but also has to love having a healthy Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams to hand off to. These division rivals will meet again. It’s so close I’ve got to go with home-field. DOLPHINS (31-23, JETS)

GREEN BAY (2-0) -3 @ CHICAGO (3-0) 46 pts (MNF)
-Oldest rivalry in the league renewed. A coaching upgrade for the offense has kick-started the Bears and QB Jay Cutler into high-gear. Chicago’s undefeated (thanks to that week one gift against Detroit) with Mike Martz calling the plays for Lovie Smith‘s team. Under Martz the Bears are fifth in the league in offense and  Cutler’s tossed for seven TDs with only one pick. Cutler was stellar in last week’s 27-20 Bears win over the Cowboys in Dallas. The Bears defense, led by Brian Urlacher and Julius Peppers, was monstrous against Dallas. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers are the class of the NFC North at this stage. Their Achilles Heel, RB Ryan Grant is out for the year with a bad wheel. Against the worst team in the league last week, replacements Brandon Jackson and John Kuhn combined for 65 rushing yards on 20 carries. They’ll get better (and Larry Johnson’s available). But, this early in the season against their arch division rival at their place isn’t good. BEARS (20-17, BEARS)

BYE WEEK: LOS ANGELES (15 seasons, 3 weeks)

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