NFL Week 10 open thread

Last week the Steelers proved themselves against a tough New York Giants team on the road, their second road win in a row, to move their record to 5-3.  They should have no trouble tomorrow against the hapless Kansas City Chiefs at home.  A year ago this might have looked like a good choice for a Monday night game, but this year it looks like a recipe for a dull evening.  Steelers 30, Chiefs 13.

My picks last week got me my first sweep of the season, a 6-0 mark to move my season record to 38-16.  Can I do that two weeks in a row? Let’s find out:

  • Texans at Bears – This almost as good as two undefeated teams matching up, and it’s almost exactly like that with these two 7-1 teams.  Houston is unbeaten on the road and Chicago is undefeated at home.  When the unstoppable force meets the immovable object, bet on the immovable object.  Texans have the better defense — 4th against the run and 2nd against the pass vs 16th and 6th for Chicago, respectively — so I’ll go against the line and pick Houston over Chicago, 24-20.
  • Cowboys at Eagles – At least one of these teams will win today, which is better odds than either of them have gotten on their own recently.  Whoever loses may as well start the rebuilding, because this division won’t have a 7-9 champion like the NFC West did last year.  The Eagles should win at home, but something tells me they will find a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of Tony Romo.  Cowboys 27-23 over the Eagles.
  • Falcons at Saints – Atlanta may have met the team that will end their unbeaten streak.  The Falcons have literally been unbeatable this season, but the Saints have begun to improve, and they’re at home.  I’m going to make this my upset of the week and choose the (S)Aints in a surprise win, 31-24.
  • Lions at Vikings – The line has Detroit up 3, but the Vikes have only lost one home game this season, while the Lions are 2-3 on the road.  It should be an entertaining game, but Minnesota hangs on to win 27-20.
  • Chargers at Buccaneers – These are two evenly-matched teams … in mediocrity.  They’re both 4-4, and San Diego is 2-2 on the road while Tampa Bay is 2-2 at home.  The Bucs play better-than-average offense (13th in the passing game and 9th rushing) and have the league’s best rushing defense, but also the league’s worst passing defense.  That’s not much of a problem against the Bolts, though, because they’re 22nd in passing offense and 20th in rushing offense, while being 18th against the pass and 4th against the rush on defense.  Philip Rivers might be able to carve up the Bucs’ secondary, but he hasn’t exactly excelled at doing so this year.  I’ll give the edge to the home team in this case.  Tampa Bay 30, San Diego 20.

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