Antigonish - December 10, 2011 - Pigskin picks went a middling 3 for 5 in week 13, and look to bounce back with a big Week 14.
Lock of the Week - New England @ Washington - The Patriots are fresh off an uninspiring victory over the Colts which failed to impress the New England faithful or coaching staff - a situation that will likely be remedied against the Skins. Look for Brady and the Pats to pour it on here in what should be an easy win for them, provided they don't play to the level of their competition again. My guess is that coach Belichik, the master of motivation, ensures they don't! Patriots win.
Atlanta vs Carolina - The Carolina offense and rookie QB Cam Newton continue to dazzle, with the likely rookie of the year having demonstrated weekly that he was picked number 1 in the 2011 draft for a reason. This surprising offensive prowess, however, has not led to winning football for the Panthers, as the Carolina defence continues to allow yards and points at an alarming rate. Atlanta has much better balance as a team, having an offence that should move the ball at ease vs the Panther defense, and while they might struggle to contain Newton, Matt Ryan and company should outscore him. Falcons win.
Eagles at Dolphins - Both teams come into this contest with identical 4-8 records - (If any of you saw that coming in August, my hat is off to you) which for the Eagles represents a profound sense of disappointment, and for the Dolphins very likely a feeling of accomplishment. That said, Philly welcomes back two offensive stars in QB Mike Vick and WR Jeremy Maclin this week, and that should be enough to push the underachieving Eagles ahead of the try hard Dolphins in this one. Eagles win.
Rams at Seahawks - The Rams are down to their 3rd string QB Tom Brandstater (who was not good enough to stick with the Colts last year, enough said), while the Seahawks counter with the emerging WR Golden Tate and a punishing running game led by the beast, Marshawn Lynch. Seahawks win ugly here.
Bears at Broncos - No Cutler and no Forte spell doom for da Bears. The Broncos, meanwhile, continue to surpass expectations based on a solid defence and the inspiring play of QB Tim Tebow, who may not look like an NFL passer (unless you are looking way back in the vaults at very early NFL game film), but has certainly demonstrated the ability to run his team to victory. Don't expect Tebow to have a huge day against a Bears defence that will be focussed on stopping his scrambling, but the Bears offensive challenges minus their star players should be more than enough to give the advantage to Denver. Broncos win!
Upset of the Week - Texans at Bengals - The favoured Texans continue to pile up the wins, and though they are down to their 3rd string QB in TJ Yates, the bus keeps rolling. Take away his best target in WR Andre Johnson, however, plus a week of game film for the Bengals to dissect, and my guess is that the Texans injury woes on both sides of the ball finally catch up to them. This is a game the Bengals have to win to prove to themselves that they are a legit playoff team. Rookie star WR AJ Green is proving to be a great player, and rookie QB Andy Dalton knows how to get him the ball. That and a steady dose of RB Cedric Benson gets them the upset. Bengals win.