FOXBORO MA - SEPTEMBER 26: Patrick Chung #25 of the New England Patriots is tackled by Andy Levitre #67 of the Buffalo Bills after Chung intercepted a pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick of the Bills during on September 26 2010 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro Massachusetts. The Patriots defeated the Bills 38-30. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Our fearless picks leader had a losing week last week. What can he do to turn it around this week?
We're back for another round of NFL picks, and once again, I'm always confused why you would listen to me. Picking NFL games is like playing Texas Hold 'Em. Sure, you know some hands are almost always winners, but most of the time, even a good starting hand can be beaten by a weaker one once the flop, turn and river cards hit. In this analogy, last week's Steelers-Seahawks game was pocket aces, whereas the Ravens-Titans game was like pocket jacks (i.e. the hand that looks easy to win with, but never is). I got one of those games right and one of those games wrong last week. I think you know which is which.
With all that in mind, here are this week's picks. All odds from SB Nation's NFL odds page.
LAST WEEK: 7-8-1.
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills (+9): When's the last time an undefeated team was a nine-point underdog at home? Wait, don't answer that, because I'm sure it's happened. It's still kind of nuts, though, so I'm riding the Bills bandwagon. (Watch as the Patriots make me look dumb). Bills
Jacksonville Jaguars at Carolina Panthers (-4): It's about time Cam Newton gets his first NFL win. It was probably too much to expect in his debut, and it was definitely too much to expect against the Packers. It's not too much to expect against a team starting a rookie quarterback for the first time. Panthers
You had a great run. Really, you did. You did some amazing things in Philadelphia and got a lot of crap from people that was completely undeserved. You did nothing wrong, and yet everyone seemed to criticize you. It was fun. But now, it's time. Time to declare that you're just not the same guy anymore. Sorry, Donovan. It was a great ride. Lions
Houston Texans at New Orleans Saints (-4): Ooooohhh, this one should be fun. Problem is, with Arian Foster's injury status still a bit unclear, Houston will lose a big element of its run game. Running the ball well is the key to beating the Saints, so that's an issue. Saints
Baltimore Ravens at St. Louis Rams (+3.5): With Terrell Suggs dominating the Rams' offensive line, Captain Checkdown (aka Sam Bradford) is going to be even more in his element than usual, which is a bad thing for the Rams. Ravens
Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-1): Let's be honest about this: if Michael Vick doesn't get hurt, the Falcons don't win on Sunday. Don't give me the whole "well, Vick doesn't play defense" defense either. The Falcons needed two scores, and even if they got one, they weren't stopping Vick to get the other. Tampa Bay, meanwhile, showed something in coming back to beat Minnesota last week. I like them at home. Buccaneers