Well, here we are again. My slump continues. This league is kicking my butt right now.
Another bad week and we are back to where we started, at least with the best bets: 4-4. Not good. Not good. It ain't Jeff Fisher/Steve Spurrier bad (7-9), but it's not nearly good enough. I thought by cutting down to just two games last week but that just resulted in an 0-2 weekend. Yikes.
And I have to tell you, I'm not exactly feeling uber confident about too many of these games this week, either. I liked the Thursday game, but alas this column comes out on Friday. So, yeah, that's gone. Let's see if we can keep that smallest of streaks going this weekend. I'm focused on two games, again:
The Falcons defense has to scare the heck out of anyone associated with it right now. They have lost a bevy of impactful starters on that side of the ball, and some of the very men whose speed and athleticism has come to define the best that unit has to offer. Now, you have to have concerns about the pass rush, as well as the ability to find linebackers who can cover anyone coming out of the backfield. The Bengals have an effective screen game even if Joe Mixon is out, and I suspect the Bengals sell out to try to take away Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley deep and force Atlanta to march down the field in a more plodding manner. The is an AFC game after two draining and physical NFC South contests and the Falcons seem like a beat up team already. I'll take the points.
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I don't believe the Seahawks are back, just yet, but there were some signs of life a week ago. If nothing else, Earl Thomas is playing great football and I suspect he'll find some joy in Josh Rosen's first NFL start. Arizona has no identity on either side of the ball, and there is a significant discrepancy in the experience of the head coaches as well. Both teams seem to fall pray to slow starts, but if Seattle can maintain a modicum of the run game it produced against Dallas, I like its chances to win big here. The Cardinals have been flat and tepid at home, and I'm not sure the insertion of Rosen is going to change all of that.