Well, the Bengals certainly made it interesting for us last week, as Andy Dalton orchestrated a brilliant last minute drive that culminated in a game winning field goal with only a few ticks left on the clock to beat Cleveland. Still, there are no style points in survivor, so we’ll take the win and move on. We’re getting down to the nitty gritty here, and as available teams continue to fall by the wayside, let’s see who has the best chance of getting us a green this week.
The best matchups by the spread are for the Patriots, 49ers, Saints, Packers, Cowboys, Ravens, and Steelers. The bad news is that we have used all of these teams already. If you have any of them free, now may not be a bad week to give them a go, although I’d be pretty hesitant to use Pittsburgh against a very good Bengals team. So, let’s dig a little deeper to see what we can put together. Some of the next best spreads (although all are 4 points or under) favor the Dolphins, Bucs, Jets, and Falcons. Immediately I want to get rid of Tampa Bay, who may be without Josh Freeman on Sunday, and regardless face a dangerous Panthers team. Miami is a tricky case, as they have shown to be a pretty worthy team in recent weeks, but the Raiders are no slouch, and they have a lot more to play for. This leaves us with the Jets against Washington or Atlanta against a T.J. Yates-led Houston team. Despite being down to their third-stringer, Houston still boasts the best defense in the league right now, and the most formidable running attack. If they are going to lose, this is a decent week for it, but I’d still much rather take the Jets to beat the Redskins. New York knows that they need to win out to have a chance at the playoffs, and you can bet Rex Ryan will have his team fired up for this one. Although Washington did win last week, they are still a very mediocre team, and the Jets should feast on Rex Grossman. Although the game will be played in Washington, the Jets are a team designed for the road, as they focus on bruising defense and a ground and pound offense. In a very difficult week if you’ve already used the obvious choices, the Jets seem like the best bet of a bad lot.
Pick: 1) New York Jets 2) Atlanta 3) Denver
Already used: Houston, Pittsburgh, San Diego, New Orleans, New England, Green Bay, Dallas, Baltimore, San Francisco, Jacksonville, Detroit, Cincinnati