Things were stress free in week 6, as the Packers took care of the Rams without much of an issue. The only downside is that we have now used up Green Bay, which means we can’t turn to the best team in football to get us a win down the line. But there are still a bunch of options out there, so let’s take a look at the best options for this week:
The biggest spreads, in order, favor the Saints, Cowboys, Packers and Ravens. Everything else is 5 points or under, so our options are pretty limited this week. Add in the fact that we’ve already used the Packers and the Saints, and things are especially thin. (Sidenote: if you do have Green Bay available, they are obviously a viable option against the Vikings with Ponder making his first ever start. I’m a little more weary of New Orleans, as the Colts are showing signs of progress every week, and remember how tense they made things against Pittsburgh with the national spotlight on them.) So, it’s either Dallas against St. Louis, or Baltimore against Jacksonville. The Cowboys took the Patriots to the brink last week but couldn’t close the deal, as Tom Brady won it late in a heartbreaker for the Cowboys. This week, they get the winless Rams, who may or may not be without Sam Bradford this week. The Rams have looked bad this year, and likely deserve to be 0-5, but pause for a moment to consider who they have faced: Philly, the Giants, Baltimore, Washington and Green Bay; some pretty hefty competition. While Dallas should take this one, the Cowboys make me leery since they keep finding new ways to lose. They are also going to be without Felix Jones in this one. If the Rams have to start A.J. Feeley, then I have far more confidence in Dallas’ chances, but as of now that is going to be a game time decision.
Meanwhile, Baltimore takes on Jacksonville on Monday night. The Ravens have looked great this year minus their snafu against Tennessee. The Jags, not so much. Although they did put up a fight against Pittsburgh, Jacksonville have looked listless all year, and the thought of Blaine Gabbert going up against the Ravens defense makes me cringe a little. While my general rule of thumb is to avoid road teams when I can, Jacksonville is not a scary place to play since the stadium is half empty, and I think the primetime factor that worries me sometimes actually plays into Baltimore’s favor here since they are anxious to show the nation that they are to be considered a genuine Super Bowl threat. Super Bowl teams do not lose to Jacksonville, simple as that. While an argument could be made either way, I’ll take the Ravens here (at least its an excuse to watch what should otherwise be a less than thrilling Monday night game).
Pick: 1) Baltimore 2) Green Bay 3) Dallas
Already used: Houston, Pittsburgh, San Diego, New Orleans, New England, Green Bay