It’s three weeks into the season and we’re already into the bye weeks. At least the Thursday night game always cheers us up. Oh wait, that wasn’t the case last week when Atlanta ambushed Tampa Bay in the first half and made the game basically unwatchable. And the week before disappointed when early penalties marred an ugly game between Pittsburgh and Baltimore. I guess it’s better than nothing? Let’s just move on before I think about this more.
Survivor Pick of the Week:
SAN DIEGO over Jacksonville
I’m taking a leap of faith on this one. San Diego has screwed survivor pools in the past. They lost as a 9.5-point favorite at St. Louis (Never take road teams in survivor pools!) and as a 12.5-point favorite at home against Oakland in 2010. They killed the hopes of many in Week 1 of 2008 with a loss as a 9.5-point home favorite against Carolina. Hopefully they won’t dash my hopes again because they are the Chargers after all.
Things seem to fall nicely for the Chargers this week. Jacksonville has to travel out west with a rookie quarterback making his first NFL start behind center. Most would argue that Blake Bortles is better than Chad Henne, but he’s still a rookie behind a weak offensive line. San Diego should be able to get things done offensively without issue. I wouldn’t be shocked with a loss, but it’s the best opportunity on the board right now.
You have two other options if you want to avoid the Chargers. Indianapolis comes off their best game of the season and returns home against Tennessee. Jake Locker may not play, which means we get Charlie Whitehurst and that’s a real wild card. Tennessee’s defense has been decent, but Indianapolis should have enough at home. Pittsburgh hosts Tampa Bay, who also is showcasing a quarterback in his first start of the season. Mike Glennon was passable last year, so Tampa Bay may be better off with him behind center as well. I’m slightly worried about a letdown after the way the Steelers looked last Sunday night, but Tampa Bay’s defense is much worse than we expected.
Teams already used: Philadelphia, Green Bay, and New England
Thursday Night Pick:
N.Y. Giants +4 over WASHINGTON
Kirk Cousins is showing everybody what he can do when given the offensive reins. Robert Griffin III may never get his starting spot back. Cousins’ biggest test will come this week as the Giants’ secondary has done a good job outside of the first half of the first game of the season. The short week gives both teams less time to prepare, so we’ll see who does a better job.
The Giants’ offense bounced back last week against a good Houston defense and it’s possible they’re moving forward. Washington’s pass defense should allow Eli Manning more success, but the key to the game will likely be how the Redskins handle the Giants’ improved running game. Washington has done well against the opposition in that area so far, but the numbers are padded from their game against Jacksonville.
There’s potential for this to be a wide-open affair, so I’ll take the points. Let’s just hope it’s more watchable than the last two Thursday night affairs.
Kyle’s Pick: Washington’s Football Team
Last Week: 9-7