There really wasn’t much doubt on Thursday night. It was a marginal football game won by a marginal football team over a very bad football team. Hey, has Romeo Crennel been fired yet?
Anyway, here is how The Coach and The Doc approached Thursday’s 31-13 blowout: “Yuk. You are probably watching this stinker because Grey’s Anatomy is a rerun. Both coaches are as good as gone at the end of the season, that is if Romeo Crennel is still around that long (who names their kid Romeo anyway). Chargers have won their last four in a row at home against the Chiefs, and quite frankly it doesn’t matter which bum (Cassel or Quinn) gets the start under center for KC, this one will make five. Just don’t take the Chargers to cover the outrageous spread.” The Coach says: “This is three hours of my life that I will never get back.”
Coach took the Chargers and the points and filled his boots. This was so easy for San Diego that even Philip Rivers looked good, going 18-for-20 for 220 yards and two touchdowns. It also didn’t hurt that the Chargers scored two defensive touchdowns within a two-minute span in the fourth quarter. San Diego improved to 4-4 and Kansas City fell to 1-7 and the Chiefs are officially the biggest disappointment of the 2012 season.
In the meantime, The Coach and The Doc are heating up. Last week the Doc went 11-3 straight up (71-47) and 10-4 against the spread (50-68) while The Coach went 11-3 (74-44) straight up and 10-4 against the spread (54-64). Much better.
As always, The Doc writes the justifications, The Coach sits back, polishes his brass and makes snooty remarks.
Denver Broncos (4-3) at Cincinnati Bengals (3-4) Line: Broncos by 3.5
Manning vs. Dalton? Puh-leeze. Peyton, who is fully warmed up now, has at least 300 yards, three touchdown passes and 70 percent completions in four consecutive games and Denver has won 14 of the past 17 times these two teams have met. Can’t figure out the spread in this one. The Coach says: “Peyton Manning @onegoodquarterback.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE BRONCOS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE BRONCOS TO WIN AND COVER.
Arizona Cardinals (4-4) at Green Bay Packers (5-3) Line: Packers by 11.
Most of us were burned last week when the Pack failed to cover the spread against the Jags. Green Bay still has injury issues with Greg Jennings out and Jordy Nelson a game time decision. Aaron Rodgers, like Peyton Manning, has needed a little time to get in the groove this year, and I think he’ll be grooving against the terrible Cardinal pass defense. I don’t think Arizona will regroup from an awful Monday Nighter. The Coach says: “I’ll have one of them discount double-checks.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE PACKERS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE PACKERS TO WIN AND COVER.
Miami Dolphins (4-3) at Indianapolis Colts (4-3) Line: Dolphins by 2.5.
Raise your hand if you thought either team would be above .500 half way through the season. I found this little nugget of information in a Miami newspaper; Andrew Luck and Ryan Tannehill will be the first rookie QBs since the NFL-AFL merger to meet in the regular season with at least three wins each. Not too bad. The Fish are playing consecutive road games, which is tough. But they are so good on defense that, even with Tannehill banged up, they’ll get it done in Indy. The Coach: “Potentially, the most interesting game of the entire weekend. And probably the best game in 2016.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE DOLPHINS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE COLTS.
Baltimore Ravens (5-2) at Cleveland Browns (2-6) Line: Ravens by 3.5.
Baltimore has won nine games in a row over Cleveland and is 4-0 after byes under John Harbaugh. The Browns have been playing better defense as of late, and managed to keep it close the last time they met in Week 4. Ravens are a better team, I just don’t think the Browns are there yet, but it will be a close one. The Coach says: “A month ago, Baltimore would win this by three touchdowns. But without Ray Lewis that is not the same team.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE RAVENS TO WIN BUT NOT COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE BROWNS IN AN UPSET.
Buffalo Bills (3-4) at Houston Texans (6-1) Line: Texans by 10.5
Imagine having a bye week then coming back to face the Texans? Good grief. And a well-rested Texans team, too with Houston coming off the bye. The Texans’ Arian Foster probably has his helmet on right now and is waiting for kickoff as he knows he will probably have a big game; Buffalo is allowing 177 running yards a game so far. Mario Williams will wish he never left. The Coach says: “Ouch! This will get ugly.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE TEXANS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE TEXANS TO WIN AND COVER.
Carolina Panthers (1-6) at Washington Redskins (3-5) Line: Redskins by 3.
The former NFL flavor of the month vs. the current one, Cam Newton against RG3. The Panthers are playing consecutive road games, which even for clubs with a lot of talent it is hard to do. They do have a chance, however, as the Redskins pass defense is horrible, they could be the first team ever to allow 5,000 passing yards in a season. Cam Newton will step up. The Coach says: “One can only hope the two coaches allow the two best athletes in the NFL to light it up.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE PANTHERS IN AN UPSET.
THE COACH: TAKE WASHINGTON TO WIN AND COVER.
Detroit Lions (3-4) at Jacksonville Jaguars (1-6) Line: Lions by 3.5.
Tough game for Jacksonville, expectations will be high from their fans as the played well against the Packers last week, but lost Maurice Jones-Drew in the process. The Lions managed to get back on track last week with that late touchdown against the Seahawks. Look for a big day from Matthew Stafford, he should surpass 10,000 career passing yards in his 37th game. Only Kurt Warner, who did it in 36 games, has done it faster. The Coach says: “The Roar has been restored! The Roar has been restored! Well, maybe.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE LIONS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE LIONS TO WIN AND COVER.
Chicago Bears (6-1) at Tennessee Titans (3-5) Line: Bears by 3.5.
The Titans are one of the most inconsistent teams in the NFL right now, you never know what you will get from week to week. Chicago’s defense is hot, in fact they have scored 41 of their 185 points so far this season. Last week the Bears O-line was terrible, and it almost cost them against the Panthers, bringing more pouting from Jay Cutler, the Rodney Dangerfield of football. Expect a big day from Brandon Marshall while the Bears D will shut down the Titans Chris Johnson. The Coach says, “The Bears might have the best defense in the NFC… and the worst offence.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE BEARS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE TITANS TO WIN.
Minnesota Vikings (5-3) at Seattle Seahawks (4-4) Line: Seahawks by 5.
The Seahawks are coming off a tough road loss last week in Detroit, but for whatever reason they are a different and better team at home. The Vikings looked awful at home against the Bucs last week, Christian Ponder struggled and the Vikings defense has allowed a 100 yard rusher in each of their past three games, and losing two of them during that time. It doesn’t happen often, but look for Adrian Peterson to be the second best running back in this one, Marshawn Lynch will run wild. The Coach says: “I’d go the other way with Joe Webb at QB for the Vikings.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE SEAHAWKS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE SEAHAWKS TO WIN AND COVER.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-4) at Oakland Raiders (3-4) Line: Raiders by 1.
The Bucs Josh Freeman and his passing game have come to life the past couple of weeks, in fact Tampa Bay has won three in a row and scored at least 28 in each of those wins. Rookie Doug Martin is starting to get hot and the Bucs are starting to utilize him more. The Bucs secondary is weak, but I can’t see the Raiders Carson Palmer taking advantage of it. The Coach: “Not gonna lie, I’m flippin’ a coin here.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE BUCCANEERS IN AN UPSET.
THE COACH: TAKE THE RAIDERS TO WIN AND COVER.
Pittsburgh Steelers (4-3) at New York Giants (6-2) Line: Giants by 3.5
The Giants come home after the close call in Dallas to play a Steelers team that is starting to get hot. The Giants have major issues in the secondary and Big Ben likes to throw it so this could be another game where the Giants give up a ton of yards through the air. However, the Giants can also move it through the air against the Steelers so I am expecting a high scoring and very entertaining game. I like the Giants offensive line better, so Eli Manning will win this battle of the Class of 2004. The Coach says: “Game of the Week. I just love the Giants at home.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE GIANTS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE GIANTS TO WIN AND COVER.
Dallas Cowboys (3-4) at Atlanta Falcons (7-0) Line: Falcons by 4.
The Cowboys are coming off a tough home loss to the Giants, while the Falcons impressed in winning at Philadelphia. I think the Boys gave it all they got last week and will have nothing in the tank. Expect Matt Ryan to continue his MVP season. The Coach: “I will lay my money on the Falcons until they lose.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE FALCONS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE FALCONS TO WIN AND COVER.
Philadelphia Eagles (3-4) at New Orleans Saints (2-5) Line: Saints by 3.
In what would have been a marquee matchup a few years ago, MNF serves us up this dud. The Eagles still have some playoff hopes, but the Saints can hear the fat lady singing. The only thing worth watching is that this could be Michael Vick’s last game as a Eagles starter, but with the Saints defense being the first since 1950 to allow 400-plus yards each of its first seven games, who knows? Expect a shoot-out. Home team wins. The Coach says: “Home team wins.”
THE DOC: TAKE THE SAINTS TO WIN AND COVER.
THE COACH: TAKE THE SAINTS TO WIN AND COVER.