View Single Post
Old 10-09-2008, 01:06 PM   #1
Jeff Boswell
All-Star Player
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 333
Jeff Boswell is on a distinguished road
Default NFL Weekly Predictions: Week 6

Cincinnati @ New York Jets (-6 1/2)

While his bid to score a touchdown in Texas Stadium and kiss the Dallas star didn’t come to fruition, Chad Johnson won’t let that failure deter him from making another bold prediction for Sunday’s game in the Meadowlands.

“Hey, it’s an election year,” says Johnson. “What’s wrong with a few empty promises? Anyway, I pride myself as the only football player who makes even bolder predictions with each successive failure of previous predictions. This Sunday, against the Jets, I plan to score a touchdown, and then I'll shock the world by kissing former Jet Wayne Chrebet."

"Hey, this is New York,” says Brett Favre. “Is that even a big deal? I can go practically anywhere in the city and see men kissing. That's not a common sight in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Besides the coverage skills of Al Harris and Charles Woodson, the only man-to-man action you can expect in Green Bay usually involves a cardboard likeness of myself."

"Now, if Joe Namath and Suzy Kolber are on the sidelines, then we may likely see two of the most adamant refusals to grant kisses to NFL players of all time. But I think we would need a clarification of the rules before Johnson can celebrate. Would Chrebet be considered a prop?"

Is Cincinnati the best 0-5 team in football? You bet. And, if that's not enough to be proud of, they're the only 0-5 team in football. But, if an 0-5 team can be considered dangerous, then the Bengals would be that team. They can put up points in a hurry; unfortunately, they can give them up just as fast.

Favre outduels Carson Palmer, and the Jets Kerry Washington, whose appeal of a fine for his hit on Anquan Boldin two weeks ago is denied, picks off Palmer once, then files a grievance with the commissioner of the More Taste League.

New York wins 37-33.

Baltimore @ Indianapolis (-6)

With 21 points in a 2:10 span of the fourth quarter, the Colts turned a 27-10 deficit into an improbable 31-27 win over the Texans. This Sunday, the Colts will try for the third time for their inaugural win in brand new Lucas Oil Stadium, where the Colts have lost their first two home games.

“We’ll christen that facility with a win soon enough,” says Peyton Manning. “You know, the fine builders of LOS nicknamed it the ‘Lube Job.’ In keeping with that theme, we’re calling the beautiful waitresses that work the luxury suites there the ‘Personal Lubricants.' The waiters? They’re the ‘Grease Monkeys.’"

"Last week, we were starring a 1-3 record in the face and didn’t blink. And, it’s a good thing we didn’t blink. Otherwise, we may have missed those three Sage Rosenfels turnovers. I found it quite gutsy of Rosenfels to go airborne before getting helicoptered.

After an 2-0 start, the Ravens have dropped two in a row, losing three-point decisions to both the Steelers and Titans. Baltimore has one of the toughest defenses in the league, but their fortunes have been done an offensive lack of punch. Ray Lewis, Baltimore’s emotional leader and the NFL's most intense motivational guru, welcomes the challenge that the Indy offense brings.

"Twenty-one points in a two-minute span?" says Lewis. "Heck, we'd take that in a two-week span. But I can guarantee the Colts won’t score 21 in two minutes on us. We won’t be the first team to lose to the Colts in Lucas Oil Stadium. During my spastic, seizure-like pre-game ritual dance, which can only be matched in movement by the Looney Tunes’ Tasmanian Devil, I’ll have to revise my usual ‘Not in our house!’ boast to say ‘Not in their house!’ Hopefully, that won’t confuse our offense more than usual.”

The Ravens possess the mythical "Triple Crown" of defense right now, leading the league in total defense, rush defense, and pass defense. Meanwhile, the Colts, surprisingly, are last in the league in rushing offense. Therefore, when the Colts try to run, it will be the 'immovable object" versus another "immovable object."

"I guess I shouldn't bring out the Colts 'These colors don't run.' flag," says Manning.

Colts win 19-17.

Carolina @ Tampa Bay (-1)

With a 4-1 record and the outright lead in the NFC South, the Panthers head to Tampa with a load of confidence, and a defense and offense that played a near-flawless game in last week’s 34-0 win over Kansas City.

“We’re definitely bringing our ‘A’ game to Tampa,” says John Fox. “More importantly, we’re bringing our cheerleaders. And they always bring the best out of each other. And while Fox Sports will be on location to plunge in headfirst with football analysis, the Speed TV network crew will also be there at a local Tampa bar for a special Panther cheerleader edition of the hit show Pinks: All Out. This should be a real rug, I mean barnburner."

"Coach Fox said a mouthful," says John Gruden, coach of the 3-2 Bucs. "You know, I've got a lot in common with Panther cheerleaders. I'm often described as 'sharp-tongued.' However, I like to work alone in bathroom stalls. And, I like to work alone when making decisions about my starting quarterback. Who's it going to be? This kind of decision harkens me back to my early days in Tampa, when my toughest decisions were always whether to listen to what Keyshawn Johnson had to say, or gargle with Drano. Either way, I'm not happy. So, it's either 'Fall Out Boy' Jeff Garcia or Brian Griese, the league’s only second-generation mediocre quarterback. I guess it will be a game-time decision."

Prior to kickoff, Julius Peppers meets with officials to hear their interpretations of helmet-to-helmet hits. Earlier in the week, Peppers made NFL history by becoming the only player to be fined by a legal hit. Sure, Ed Hochuli called Peppers hit on Matt Ryan a ‘helmet-to-helmet’ hit, but it’s obvious Hochuli’s maniacal commitment to huge biceps has clouded his view of the rules, and his view in general. The man is blind. And the NFL is apparently trying to cover his mistakes.

Peppers gets good news when Sunday’s officiating crew says they have no affiliation with Hochuli, and, in fact, have never even heard of the guy.

Panthers win 19-13.

Detroit @ Minnesota (-13)

The post-Matt Millen era in Detroit began with a fizzle, as the Lions stayed winless with a 34-7 loss to the Bears. Fans in Detroit paid tribute to Millen by substituting an 'ed' for an 's' in their posters, thus 'Millen Sucked' instead of 'Millen Sucks.' In place of the 'Fire Millen' posters, the 'Shoot Me' message has become a popular option. And, paper bags are still in vogue at Lions game, just as they were in Millen’s tenure. Only fans have stopped bothering to cut eye holes in the brown sacks.

"Don't feel bad for Millen," says Lion head coach Rod Marinelli, best if served with roasted garlic over a plate of angel hair. "He's already lined up a new management job, as captain of the Edmund Fitzgerald. If he can right that ship, then I guess we underestimated his abilities. Which I guess would be a first, since we've spent the last eight years over-estimating his abilities."

After Monday night's huge win in New Orleans, the Vikes are 2-3 and only one-game out of the NFC North lead. Minnesota outlasted the Saints 30-27, despite two Reggie Bush punt return touchdowns.

“The coverage of Bush was certainly lacking,” says Brad Childress. “By that, I’m referring to Reggie Bush, and did not by any means intend to segue into another discussion of the sex boat incident. But how can you not after playing a game in a city known as the ‘Big Easy?’ Anyway, if we can avoid a letdown, beat the Lions, and get to 3-3, I’ve granted players permission for another boat trip. Hopefully, they won’t ‘blow it.’ The players, that is.”

The Lions have the NFL’s 30th ranked rush defense. That’s got to be music to the ears of Adrian Peterson, who only 32 on the ground against the Saints.

Peterson rushes for 162 yards and two scores, and the Vikes win 31-14.

Chicago @ Atlanta (+1)

After last week’s big win in Green Bay, the Falcons are 3-2, and it appears that Mike Smith was the right choice as head coach, and Matt Ryan was the right draft pick. As one of only two rookie starters at quarterback in the league, Ryan has shown unusual poise and maturity for such a young player.

“When you’re talking about the ‘future’ and Atlanta quarterbacks,” says Smith, “no longer do you have to follow ‘future’ with the words ‘release date.’ Matt is the future of this franchise, and as long as he has no skeletons in his closet, or in the earth, he'll have a great tenure. A ticket to a Falcons game has become a hot ticket again. No longer is two table dances and a late-night meal at Waffle house the only form of entertainment in this city. Football's back. Not that I no longer enjoy two table dances and a Waffle House meal."

Ryan will face a Bears defense that has already vanquished the Colts and Eagles this year, teams quarterbacked by league superstars Peyton Manning and Donovan McNabb. Chicago’s Brian Urlacher thinks the Bears defense can get into the head of the rookie. So, Brian, how do you intend to do that?

“None of your Falcon business,” says a perturbed Urlacher, still hampered by a condition known as “Old Spice Swagger,” which is characterized by a burning sensation in the genitalia and treatable only with penicillin and complete abstinence from sex with Paris Hilton. “For some reason, I can’t get that catchy tune ‘Sex On Fire’ by the Kings Of Leon out of my head. As for our game plan against Atlanta, you’ve got as much of a chance learning that as you do of scoring Paris.”

The Atlanta game plan is posted on the internet?! Sweet!

Actually, stopping Ryan is secondary to the Chicago defense. First, they must stop, or at least contain, Michael Turner, the NFL’s leading rusher. If they can’t, then Ryan will bait the Bears with play action and go deep to Roddy White. See, like I said, the Atlanta game plan is on the internet.

It’s a glorious day in Atlanta. Outkast adds some flavor to, or butchers (depending on your race) the national anthem, and Bobby Petrino is burned in effigy. But the Bears spoil the party, and grind out a 23-19 win.

Miami @ Houston (-3)

With two wins already, the Dolphins have doubled their wins from last year, and with last week’s 17-10 upset of the Chargers, the Fins have stunned both finalists from last year’s AFC title game. It’s obvious that head coach Tony Sparano has the team headed in the right direction, and Miami is a threat to win every week.

"I've set lofty goals for this team," says Sparano. "Next year, we plan on making the playoffs. The following year, the Super Bowl. And the year after that, we expect to have the 1972 Dolphins fidgety and nervous. Until these professional teams can prove they can stop a college offense, we’ll keep winning. The direct snap to Ronnie Bown has been our bread and butter. I’m thinking of implementing a new play that will allow Ricky Williams some direct snaps. It’s a version of the single wing called the ‘one-hitter.’”

The Texans, at 0-4, are reeling from a fourth quarter collapse last week against the Colts. In that game, the Texans held a commanding 27-10, fourth-quarter lead before three Rosenfels’ turnovers and three Indy touchdowns snatched victory from Houston’s grasp. Afterwards, a dejected Rosenfels took full blame.

“Sure, I take all responsibility,” says Rosenfels. “One would think a well-seasoned veteran such as myself wouldn’t make those mistakes, or at least space them out over three or four games. I’ve learned a hard lesson from this: it’s never a good time, as a Texan, to shout ‘Remember the Alamo!’”

Miami wins 24-21

St. Louis @ Washington (-14 ½)

With Scott Linehan fired, new head coach Jim Haslett faces the near-impossible task of turning around a Rams season that can’t get much worse. The Rams have lost all four games by 17 or more points, and their offense is last in the league, scoring only 11 points per game. With two big losses already to NFC teams, St. Louis now faces the 4-1 Redskins, possibly the hottest team in the NFL.

"It's no secret," says Haslett. "We need to get our offense going. Our offense has been like drunken St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa asleep at the wheel at a green light---going nowhere. Of course, the defense hasn’t been much better. It’s been like LaRussa’s sobriety test---a failure. Funny thing is, I’m the coordinator of that defense. Well, I’ve coordinated them all the way to a ranking of 31st in the NFL. That, my friend, apparently qualified me to be a head coach. Now, I partake on the most difficult part of taking over as head coach after an in-season firing. No, not turning the team around, but getting rid of this pesky ‘interim’ label.”

New York’s Super Bowl win over the Patriots last year began a shift of power from the AFC to the NFC. This year’s success of the NFC East has further demonstrated that shift of power, as the ‘Skins and Cowboys are 4-1, trailing the undefeated Giants in the division.

“The AFC is not what it used to be,” says Clinton Portis, second in the NFL in rushing yardage. “Three of last year’s AFC divisional round teams don’t even have winning records. It’s a trend, I tell ya.’ In general, things are just not what they used to be. And that applies not only to football, but to rap music, as well. If you’ll recall, N.W.A.’s rap anthem ‘Express Yourself’ was one of the 1980’s most memorable songs. These days, that song has been used to peddle feminine hygiene products. And Ice Cube is making movies that Steve Martin made ten years ago. So, things can go from ‘gangsta’ to ‘girly,’ just as the AFC can go from ‘powerhouse’ to ‘also-ran.’ It took twenty years for that song to lose its edge. It's taken the AFC only one year to lose its edge.”

That’s a doctorate thesis waiting to happen, Clinton.

Washington wins 34-14.

Oakland @ New Orleans (-7 ½)

With the Raider coaching career of Lane Kiffin sent to an early grave, Oakland owner Al Davis closed the door on another chapter in the coaching history of the Raiders, thus making Kiffin the only person in the world with more nails in his coffin than the carbon-dated Davis, whose "commitment to ignorance" ownership style continues to leave the Raiders in a hole. With new head coach Jim Cable now running the show, the Raiders head to the Big Easy to face the Saints.

"I thought it was totally classless how Davis fired Kiffin,” says Sean Payton. “Davis showing up in a black robe with a scythe was totally disrespectful, not only to Kiffin, but to the Grim Reaper, as well. And announcing Kiffin’s firing with Metallica’s ‘Master Of Puppets’ playing in the background was simply unnecessary. Davis needs to understand that, just like the last two centuries, the game has passed him by. Until he reliquishes control, the Raiders are doomed to remain a dysfunctional franchise.”

Indeed, it’s probably a blessing for Kiffin that he is free of the spindly, arthritic clutches of the liver-spotted Davis. Kiffin and Davis had nothing of a working relationship. Kiffin was the youngest head coach in the NFL, and Davis one of the oldest owners. It was far from a father-son relationship. In fact, it was more of a great-great-great-grandfather-son relationship, assuming the son had daily thoughts of commiting “great-great-great-grand patricide.”

New Orleans wins 26-14.

Jacksonville @ Denver (-3 1/2)

What was the biggest news in Denver? Travis Henry getting busted trying to buy cocaine? The revelation that Ed Hochuli is in Mike Shanahan’s “Fave 5?” The news that not only does Jay Cutler suffer from diabetes, but also from 'Romo-itis,' the inability to wear a baseball cap with the bill in front? No, none of those. The real news was that Denver won a defensive struggle, beating the Bucs 16-13.

"The only one that matters is the win," says Shanahan, whose daily routine includes a one-hour bath in orange Kool-Aid. "I think our defense proved that they can make a stop when we need it. As for Travis Henry, well, I’ve forgiven him for his many transgressions, but this one has to take the coke, I mean cake. I hear Travis has blown all his money and can’t even afford a lawyer. So, his court-appointed attorney is urging him to plead innocent, and explain to the judge that he was not trying to buy cocaine, but, in fact, was attempting to purchase infant formula, and got the two white, powdery substances mixed up. Seems logical, but I doubt a juror, except for maybe Ed Hochuli, would buy that story.”

Jack Del Rio can well relate to players with cocaine issues. The Jags leading receiver Matt “The Gram Cracker” Jones’ cocaine charge will be heard in drug court, and he will not face criminal charges should he complete a court-mandated drug program.

“Matt made a mistake and he’ll have to face the consequences,” says Del Rio, whose charitable foundation, ‘Rio Hobo,’ has raised thousands for Jacksonville-area homeless people. “From what I hear, these drug programs are pretty strict, especially for rich, spoiled, entitled NFL players. Lawrence Taylor will be his counselor, and L.T.’s best advice to Matt is ‘If you want to follow your nose, you better go have a bowl of Froot Loops instead of a line of dust.’ I think that’s sage advice from one coke fiend to another.”

Can the Broncos' defense pass another test? Del Rio will surely want to run the ball about 40 times against Denver. Defensively, the Jags will give up their share of yards, but to win, their red zone defense will have to limit Denver to field goals. The Broncos? Well, they just need to keep it close until a referee makes a game-deciding play.

Jacksonville wins 30-26.

Green Bay @ Seattle (-3)

Despite Aaron Rodgers' bum shoulder and a number of Matt Hasselbeck ailments, both are expected to start when the Packers and Seahawks kick off in Seattle. If you were to select the Nirvana song that most applied to that situation, it would have to be "Come As You Are." And, with pain killers in the mix, you can expect to see pill-popper extraordinaire Courtney Love show up for her first Seahawks game.

“Hey, whatever it takes to get on the field,” says Matt Hasselbeck. “You know me. I never miss a chance to see a celebrity train wreck, and I don’t miss a coin toss for anything. The last time Courtney was involved in a coin toss, I believe she lost a kidney. Give that skank two qualudes and a sleeping bag and send her on her way. Me? I’ll take tails, the ball, and we’re gonna win the game!”

Rodgers is showing Brett Favre-like toughness by playing with an injured shoulder. He's even wearing Wrangler jeans, like Favre, and, like Favre, is a horrible actor.

"Hey, Hollywood can wait," says Rodgers. "Favre waited years before he got the part in There's Something About Mary. I figure my time will come in the acting arena, and when it does, I'll be ready, like Favre, to deliver my two lines, badly, I might add, in whatever farcical balck comedy Ben Stiller chooses me for. As for football, I've just got to stay within myself, run the offense, and hope our defense can hold someone under 20."

Seattle wins 24-20.

Dallas @ Arizona (+6)

The Cowboys prevailed in a surprisingly tough 31-22 win over the Bengals in Dallas, raising their record to 4-1. But, did the Cowboys offense appease the fragile ego of Terrell Owens, who complained in week 4’s loss to Washington that he wasn’t “involved” enough in the offense?

"Good grief," says Tony Romo. "I hope so. T.O.'s been thrown at more than a dart board in a British pub. Logic doesn’t seem to be in T.O.’s vocabulary. Two weeks ago, seven catches and a TD wasn’t enough. Last week, he gets two catches and a score, and he’s happy with that? I think it’s now my turn to say he needs to be more involved in the offense.”

“But T.O.’s issues are not even news in Dallas right now. Adam Jones was involved in an altercation with one of his own security guys. You know, that’s exactly why Adam was brought to Dallas---to deflect attention from T.O. Well, he’s done it. And let’s not be too hasty in passing judgment on Adams’ little ‘incident.’ He’s fighting his bodyguards instead of strippers. I’d say that’s progress.”

Arizona’s Kurt Warner contemplated retirement after throwing the pass that led to the hit that fractured Anquan Boldin’s sinus cavity. Warner felt he threw the ball too high and led Boldin into a dangerous position. By Monday, though, Warner's retirement thoughts had quelled, and his focus was squarely on the Cowboys.

"See, Brett Favre," says Warner. "That's how you make a decision. As for the Cowboys, I'm still not sold on them being one of the elite teams in the league. Sure, they're loaded with playmakers, and they're America's team, so if you want to crown them, then crown their asses. Pardon my English."

It's a shootout in the desert, with the "Playboy," Romo dueling with the "Prayboy," Warner. The airshow is spectacular, but the Cowboys win by working Marion Barber to the tune of 27 carries for 132 yards.

Dallas wins 31-30.

Philadelphia @ San Francisco (+4 1/2)

Are the Eagles the red-headed step-child of the NFC East? With a 2-3 record, the Eagles are the only East team with a losing record, and with star running back Bryan Westbrook hurting with broken ribs in addition to a previous ankle sprain, Philly could be in deep trouble.

"Normally, a side of ribs is quite appetizing," says Andy Reid. "But not when it's Westbrook we're talking about. He's taken way too much punishment this year. Usually, Bryan's quite deft at knowing when to take a knee. Apparently, he'll take a knee when it's the fantasy football world taking the impact, and not his ribs."

Meanwhile, Donovan McNabb has blogged that he's embarrassed by the play of the Eagles. And, he's equally embarrassed that when he blogs, he's nothing more than putty in the hands of his mother Edna, who is actually the one blogging.

Westbrook plays, despite his injuries, but the Eagles choose to attack the 49ers through the air. McNabb throws for 265 yards and three touchdowns, and punter/Australian enforcer Sav Rocca makes several big hits on special teams.

Philadelphia wins 30-20.

New England @ San Diego (-5 ½)

In a rematch of last year’s AFC championship game, the Patriots visit San Diego, whom New England beat 21-12 to advance to the Super Bowl. With Tom Brady's season-ending knee injury in week one, the Chargers emerged as clear AFC favorites. However, with a 2-3 record and defensive shortcomings, the Chargers are nothing more than a team struggling to keep pace with the AFC’s elite.

“I’m not one to make excuses,” says Norv Turner, “and I may be a little paranoid, but I swear I think I saw Ed Hochuli secretly filming our practice the other day. That's no big deal. I make it a point not to reveal too much about our game plan in practices. In fact, LaDainian Tomlinson sat the entire practice out."

"Hey, if I wanted to see L.T. on the bench," says Bill Bellichick, "I could have just watched tape of last year's AFC title game. Isn't it interesting that 'knees' play such an important role in this rivalry. In the championship game last year, Tomlinson and Philip Rivers were both dealing with knee injuries. This year, Shawne Merriman is out for the year with a knee injury, and Tom Brady suffered perhaps the most crucial knee injury of this season. That's a lot a knees. Throw in Giselle Bundchen's two, and you'll understand why Brady's rehab is coming along just swimmingly."

To whom is this game most important? The Chargers, of course. They're motivated, angry, and in need of a win.

L.T. rushes for 123 yards and two touchdowns, and the Chargers win 29-21. Tomlinson then boards a charter jet for Foxboro, where he celebrates alone on the Patriot logo at midfield in Gillette Stadium.

NY Giants @ Cleveland (+7)

With a 44-6 blowout win over Seattle last week, the Giants solidified their position as a legitimate threat to repeat as Super Bowl champions. The G-Men even did it without the services of Plaxico Burress, who was suspended one game for missing a team meeting. A fairly unapologetic Burress returned to work on Monday, defiantly wearing a pair of blue Giants suspenders, a move that did not sit well with Tom Coughlin.

"I'm not sure if that was a 'fashion' statement," says Coughlin, "or a 'fascist' statement. If Plaxico has a problem with what he considers my 'autocratic' ways, then we can easily come to some sort of compromise in which he practices even less than he does now. "

The Browns are 1-3, and if they are to remotely approach last year's 10-6 record, then they'll have to turn their season around with a huge Monday night win. Cleveland has been the underdog in their four previous games, and that is also the case this Monday, with the Giants opening as seven-point favorites.

"So that explains why I keep hearing 'Who Let The Dogs Out?'" says Derek Anderson, whose shadow bears a striking resemblance to Brady Quinn. "I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say this won't be the last time we're listed as underdogs."

The fired-up Browns come out hot, and the Giants face a furious early Cleveland onslaught. Then, in the second quarter, trailing 6-0, the Giants take control after and Anderson turnover. Brandon Jacobs rushes for two short scores, and Eli Manning throws for 236 yards and a touchdown. New York wins 27-17.
Jeff Boswell is offline   Reply With Quote