Hognostications Week 14
By: Frank Hastings
Category: Washington Redskins News
Cleveland at Pittsburgh
Although the Steelers are without their two starting safeties (the much missed Ryan Clark – groin and Troy Polamalu – knee), they’ll still blitz often against first time starter Browns backup QB Derek Anderson - who will likely start for the injured Charlie Frye. The Steelers have dominated this match up winning 12 over the last 13.
Pick – Steelers
New York Giants at Carolina
The Panthers may get DeShaun Foster back this week. Jake Delhomme is currently listed as questionable with a sprained thumb on his throwing hand. Some Panther fans might believe that’s a blessing, I don’t. Both teams are fighting for their playoff lives in this one, and it ought to be a good game.
Pick – Giants
Oakland at Cincinnati
Could this be one of those games that I whine about in my introduction next week? For the Bengals sake, I hope not. Those of you that pick the Raiders are much better gamblers than I.
Pick – Bengals
Minnesota at Detroit
This game is being called the ‘lame of the week’. It’ll be interesting to see if Childress has had enough of Brad Johnson’s poor play and goes with rookie, Tarvaris Jackson, who is considered to be the Vikings QB of the future. Chester Taylor’s absence will hurt the Vikings. I expect Kitna and Roy Williams to have some success against the Vikings struggling secondary. It appears problems continue to follow Smoot around and expectations are he’ll be on the move again next off-season. Could a return to the Redskins be an option? Lord knows we need CB depth.
Pick – Lions
Tennessee at Houston
Texan rookie LB, DeMeco Ryans – if you haven’t heard of him, you will. Check out his stat line for last Sunday in Oakland – 15 tackles, a fumble recovery, a forced fumble, a sack, a QB pressure and three pass breakups. He’ll get his turn chasing around and trying to catch Vince Young this Sunday.
Pick – Titans
Indianapolis at Jacksonville
This is going to be a great game. It is extremely difficult to pick the Jags and foresee the Colts losing two straight, but what the hell.
Pick – Jags
Baltimore at Kansas City
The Chiefs are back to their old ways with a defense that struggles to finish the season. That defense gave up over 400 yards to the leagues 2nd worst offense last week. Although the Chiefs have won 18 straight home games in December, I’m picking the Raisins.
Pick – Raisins
New England at Miami
Two good defenses, but only one good offense. Although Miami has been the only team that has handed the Patriots their only two regular season losses in December and January over the last four seasons, I just can’t see Harrington winning a match up against Brady. The Pats win a close one.
Pick – Patriots
Atlanta at Tampa Bay
This is a tough pick. Tampa has historically dominated in this match up and all of the Bucs’ wins this season have come at home. But the Falcons having possible playoff motivation ought to find a way to win this one against a team they beat in week 2 and one that has really struggled offensively this season.
Pick – Falcons
Philadelphia at Washington
JC meet our second most hated rival. It’s time to end the ridiculous talk about the Eagles still being in the playoff hunt. We should be able to run the ball against the Eagles. The question is can our defense keep Garcia contained and shut down Westbrook and Stallworth. Stallworth is listed as questionable with a tweaked hamstring. My bet is he’ll play – but won’t be a factor, as our secondary is playing better thanks to Shawn’s return and some resemblance of a pass rush.
Pick – Redskins
Seattle at Arizona
The Seahawks get a couple of nice confidence building games this week at Arizona and hosting the 49ers next week. Although, the 49ers beat them in week 11. They need a win this week to stay tied for the second seed (first round bye) in the NFC with either the Pukes or Saints.
Pick – Seahawks
Green Bay at San Francisco
This is difficult game to get excited about. Favre has owned the 9ers in the past. If he falters this week, it could be a strong factor in his decision not to return next season after ankle surgery. Look for Gore to open up the passing game for Alex Smith and Antonio Bryant against the 30th ranked Packer pass defense.
Pick – 49ers
Buffalo at New York Jets
Jauron vs. Mangini. Both these rookie coaches have done well this season, with Mangini even giving Jet fans playoff hopes.
Pick – Jets
Denver at San Diego
The Chargers put up 35 and beat the Broncos in week 11 in Denver. They’ll sweep the series and win at home this Sunday. Jay Cutler meets the Terrapin nightmare. Despite his suspension, a fresh Merriman still has 11 sacks this season. He’ll add to that total this week and make up for the lost playing time. Shawne reminds me of the player I always wanted Arrington to be.
Pick - Chargers
New Orleans at Dallas
Oh how I look forward to the downfall that awaits the pukes at whatever point this season. I’m not sure when it’ll happen, but when it does, won’t it just be sweet. Here’s to the pukes maintaining their streak of not winning a playoff game in the last 10 years. I always dread picking the pukes and rooting against my own pick – but at least if they do win, I can take one small and virtually meaningless positive from it. Go Saints!
Pick – Pukes
Chicago at St. Louis
The Rams defense is just plain lousy. If Grossman is going to win back the confidence of his teammates, coach and fans – this’ll be the game to do it in. This one could and should be an ugly one-sided Monday night affair.
Pick - Bears
Last Week’s Results: 8-8
Season to Date: 109-82
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