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Well that was the worst week of picks so far this season. I went 8-8 for an overall record of 112-63. There are some epic showdowns coming this weekend. A month left in the regular season and four playoff tickets have been punched – and half the slots in the AFC are taken. Houston can’t clinch anything other than a playoff spot until they claim the South. The North is still open. Meanwhile the NFC is almost all up for grabs.

On to the picks:

Denver Broncos (9-3) at Oakland Raiders (3-9) – Peyton’s Place at the Black Hole
 Division is clinched and the Broncos are now trying to get a bye. The Raiders are searching for relevance. Division games are tricky to pick especially on a short week, but the Broncos are simply better. Pick: Broncos

Miami Dolphins (5-7) at San Francisco 49ers (8-3-1) – Not this Year at Hard Knocks
 So the QB controversy in SF will rage until the Niners win the SB or lose in the playoffs. The Dolphins are flirting with an even record for the year. Not saying the Niners are looking ahead a week to playing Lord Brady, but I’m saying. Given last week’s debacle I’ll guess the Niners win. Pick: 49ers

St. Louis Rams (5-6-1) at Buffalo Bills (5-7) – Getting there! at Overpaid
 The Rams OWN the NFC West, but little else. Someone needs to inform Mr. Fisher that in order to get to the playoffs he needs some wins other than divisional. The Bills had such high hopes given the bank vaults they opened. Not much ROI going on there. Given the Bills play in a separate Conference the Rams won’t know how to react. Pick: Bills

Dallas Cowboys (6-6) at Cincinnati Bengals (7-5) – Egomaniacs at Resurgent Sophomores
 Major playoff implications for both teams here! Dallas must win to stay close in the division while the Bengals must win to keep pace for the AFC Wild Card. How it will gall Jerry to lose and get kicked out of the playoff race in Cincy to the Bengals. Pick: Bengals

Kansas City Chiefs (2 – 10) at Cleveland Browns (4-8) – Terrible at Lookout Next Year!
 This is a game between one team that is truly terrible and another that is bad, but improving. Not sure the Chiefs will put together a winning streak this season, but the Browns might. The future of the AFC North is bright. Pick: Browns

Tennessee Titans (4-8) at Indianapolis Colts (8-4) – Confused and done at Andrew’s Luck!
 Okay, as a Texans fan I am not amused to see the Colts resurgent so quickly and with Luck looking that good already. However, as a football fan I am deeply impressed with the rookie QBs this year. The Titans are done and the Colts must win to stay in the playoff race. Watching Peyton’s replacement kick his woeful team in the butt will drive Bud Adams nuts. Heh! Pick: Colts

Chicago Bears (8-4) at Minnesota Vikings (6-6) – Midway Maulers at meandering Vandals
 The Bears NEED this one. They are tied for the NFC North lead, but trail head-to-head with the Pack. The Vikings are limited on offense. It is the old Earl Campbell offense now, “Peterson to the right, Peterson to the left, Peterson up the middle.” The Bears need Jay Cutler to play like every quarter is the fourth quarter. Maybe Gabe Carimi can sit on him. Pick: Bears

Philadelphia Eagles (3-9) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-6) – See ya, Andy! at Pesky Pirates
 The Bucs are trying to stay alive and the Eagles will be just what the doctor ordered. The Eagles are already holding tryouts for next season. The Bucs are young, eager, and dangerous. This could get ugly early in Tampa.  Pick: Buccaneers

Baltimore Ravens (9-3) at Washington Redskins (6-6) – The Contenders at Wonderboys
 One team lost a heart breaker to a wounded enemy and another prevailed over a hated enemy. That these teams share a geographical area should make this a very interesting game. Both teams are in division races. As much as I like RG3’s story, the Ravens are a more complete team even with injuries. Pick: Ravens

Atlanta Falcons (11-1) at Carolina Panthers (3-9) – Prove it in the Postseason at Confusing
 The Falcons love close games – until the playoffs happen and they choke in the first round game again. Seriously, no love until they win in the playoffs. Carolina needs something, but not sure what. Oh, I know – consistency. Pick: Falcons

NY Jets (5-7) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-10) – Media Hos at Needs a Blueprint
 Oh the fun that is being had at Gotham’s expense. The Sanchize is not a good QB, but a decent cover model. Tebow is a great athlete, but a lousy thrower. And McElroy is…who knows. The Jags also had a decent cover model for a lousy QB, but he’s on his way out. There can be only one pretty boy QB and he’s in Boston. Oh, no one cares about this game, but the Jags might actually fight with the Jets while the Jets will fight with themselves. Pick: Jaguars

San Diego Chargers (4-8) at Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5) – Bye Norv at Old & Rusty
 The Chargers stink! Not sure what is going to change unless AJ Smith gets canned. The Steelers stayed in the race thanks to the play of an ancient backup QB. Even if Ben can’t go, these Steelers can handle Phillip Turnover and the SD surfers. Pick: Steelers

Arizona Cardinals (4-8) at Seattle Seahawks (7-5) – Desert Disaster at Hanging in there!
The Seahawks should enjoy this game, at least their pass rushers should.  To call the Cardinals’ Offensive line terrible is to underestimate it greatly. Still not sure if they think they are matadors and supposed to wave through the pass rushers instead of stopping them. Pick: Seahawks

New Orleans Saints (5-7) at NY Giants (7-5) – Playing Spoilers at the Champs
 The Saints are done for the season. The Giants look like a mess. The Giants are fighting for their lives and the Saints would love to hand them a huge loss. Eli might get turnover happy at any point, but will still pull it out in the end. Pick: Giants

Detroit Lions (4-8) at Green Bay Packers (8-4) – Confused Cats at Coming on Strong
 The Packers are dangerous and getting healthy. They have no run game though. The Lions have no luck and a very dirty player. Even as a division game I don’t see this being close. Mr. Rodgers is trading in his Discounted belt for a Superhero cape. Pick: Packers

Houston Texans (11-1) at New England Patriots (9-3) – Great Expectations at the Empire

Game of the weekend. The Sith have a bad two game stretch of bullies to deal with: first JJ and then Aldon. The Texans are upstarts to the Empire’s continued reign over the AFC. Lord Brady will try to pick apart a deeply wounded Houston secondary, but must deal with a formidable pass rush. Plus, the Texans are ball hogs – he has to have the ball in order to throw it. Magic 8 Ball answers have been, “Ask again later, Better not tell you now, & Cannot predict now” lots of help it was! Texans best road team in the league. Pick: Texans

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