Friday, September 18, 2009

My (Kinda) Upset Specials Of The Week

Ok so the two games I am going to pick as upset specials aren't necessarily huge surprises, but I feel comfortable in saying that most people are not betting on the teams I am picking to win.

The first game is the Pittsburgh/Chicago game. I am going with the Bears for several reasons. First of all they are the home team and that has been one of the greatest predictors of success in the NFL from time immortal. Also I believe that one of the areas where the Steelers are vulnerable on defense is on covering the tight end. That might be even moreso now that Troy Palomalu is out of the line up. Combine that with the fact that the Bears are probably going to try to feature Greg Olsen after not looking for him Sunday night. That combination to me spells trouble for the Steelers.

Besides that, I wasn't really all that impressed with the Steeler's run defense against the Titans. Now the case can be made that the Bears aren't as good of a running team as the Titans but I still think Matt Forte will have opportunities to gash the Steelers. And again Palomalu being out certainly will contribute to that.

On defense I think that the Titans played the Steelers really well for the most part in the first half last week but they were gun shy about blitzing in the second half. Having watched the game again I have no idea as to why that was because in the first half the Titans blitzed by my count 4 times and had a positive outcome all 4 times. The Bears will have no such proclivities against bringing pressure and their front four will also be coming after Ben Roethlisberger in 4 man rushes as well. I think Adewale Ogunleye will have another big day but I also expect Alex Brown and Mark Anderson to be in Big Ben's face all night too. And when they bring pressure look for Danieal Manning to come from his safety position and try to melt Big Ben's face.

The truth is after watching the Steelers/Titans game again it was apparent to me that the Titans should have won. They were moving the ball all over the field on the Steelers and they missed on two opportunities for field goals in the second half. Now I think the Bears will have all the tools necessary to go out and beat them on Sunday. The only X factor is how Jay Cutler bounces back from his shitty game against the Packers. If he can protect the ball and just take what the defense gives him, the Bears will grind this one out to victory.

The second game is the New Orleans/Philly game. I know a lot of people are high on New Orleans right now and with Donovan McNabb nursing a cracked rib there will be a temptation to go with the Saints to win the game. But I for one am going to have to roll with the Eagles. Again the Eagles are the home team and I don't have to revisit that. I also realize that the Saints have a high powered offense and I don't necessarily think the Eagles will totally shut it down, but you can't over look the Eagles' defensive effort from last week. 5 sacks, 5 interceptions and 2 forced fumbles are just ridiculous.

Not only that but also the Eagles had a great day running the ball also with Brian Westbrook and LeSean McCoy. In point of fact Donovan only threw for 79 yards before getting hurt although he did throw 2 touchdowns.

And last, but not least, Dexter Jackson is on fire right now. He had a long kickoff return for a touchdown on Sunday and if the Saints looked shaky in any phase of their game against Detroit, it was on special teams.

I still think that the Saints will put points on the board,but I don't think it will be over 21 points and it won't be enough to win the game this week.

These are all just my opinions and predictions, not to be used for gambling purposes.

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