Sunday, September 12, 2010

Picks and Predictions

A few thoughts from Saturday's college action:
  • Alabama laying 11.5 will end up being the easiest play of the whole college football season. Penn St. was starting a true freshman at quarterback in a night game on the road. Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram didn't play but his replacement Trent Richardson is and was plenty good. I figured 'Bama by 30. It would have been if they didn't call off the dogs in the fourth quarter.
  • Michigan sophomore QB Denard Robinson is now the clear front runner for the Heisman. Last week he set a record with 383 yards of total offense in the Wolverines' win over UConn. Saturday at Notre Dame he shattered that by rushing for 258 and passing for 244. His 87 yard touchdown run was the longest in Notre Dame Stadium history. Michigan has been playing football since 1879. Robinson has started two games. His name is now first and second in the record books for total offense.
  • Who knew James Madison would have a big role in determining the national champion? By beating Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, they killed any chance Boise St. had of playing in the championship game.
  • The ACC is terrible. Va Tech lost to JMU. Oklahoma blew out Florida St. Georgia Tech lost to Kansas. Miami, the only good team in the conference, lost to Ohio State. Get out the basketballs.
  • I hope Tennessee plays better next week when I go down there to watch them host Florida. I also hope I don't have to sit through a 70 minute weather delay. Oregon hung up 45 straight after being down 13-3. I don't think they'll be singing Rocky Top on campus tonight.

The NFL kicks off today so I'll go on the record with my season predictions and some of the games I like. You can read my Cashing in on the NFL article here. If you follow me on Twitter (@hammerspeaks) you got the Alabama pick yesterday and you'll get a couple more picks this afternoon. All for free.

Pittsburgh +2.5 vs. Atlanta: I have a different take on this game. Everybody is focused on the quarterback position. I think the story is the Steelers' defense. They were fifth in the league last year, but they didn't play that well and they gave up a bunch of late leads. Polamalu and Smith are back and Timmons looks like he is ready to be a star. I think Dixon will be fine. I like the Steelers getting the points at home.

Detroit +6.5 at Chicago: This is the biggest line of the week. I don't expect Bears coach Lovie Smith to survive this season. Bringing in Mike Martz as offensive coordinator and teaming him with Jay Cutler is the last act of a desperate man. Detroit seems to finally be on the right track. Stafford-to-Johnson will be a Pro Bowl combination soon enough. Look for Detroit to keep this one close.

Jacksonville -3 vs. Denver: I don't particularly like either of these teams, primarily because I'm not sold on either quarterback (you can read my ranking of all 32 starters here). I do like Maurice Jones-Drew, however. Denver's banged up and I think they'll lose the battle along both lines. Look for MJD to have a big day and for Jax to cover easily.

Season Prediction:
In the AFC I have the Steelers beating the Texans. In the NFC I have the Niners beating the Packers.  Yea, I'm biased. All the fun starts in about twelve hours. Enjoy the games.

I'll have some more picks out on Twitter later today.


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