You take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have the facts of life…the facts of life. No, I’m not having an ’80s flashback of a classic sitcom. This is actually the theme of Terrell Owens’ life as a professional football player. With being one of the most prolific wide receivers in recent NFL history, came controversy. His previous stops in San Francisco, Philadelphia and Dallas resulted in divided locker rooms and severed relationships with those teams. Fast forward to 2009! The good and bad still come with T.O., but in a different variety. For reasons beyond comprehension, Owens is not being treated as the weapon he’s known to be. In six games, he has only 15 catches, 215 yards and one touchdown. Such neglect by the coaching staff should be criticized, right? Not in Owens’ eyes! He has been on his best behavior in the midst of all this and even when reporters try to bait him into reverting back to the old T.O., the most he gives them is, “I’m just doing what my coaches tell me.” Ladies and gentlemen, there is a such thing as redemption.
I too am on a journey of redemption from past mistakes. Without further ado, it’s time for me to pull a T.O. and turn things around. Here we go:
Colts over Rams– Indianapolis averages 27 points per game, while St. Louis hangs nine an outing. Couple that with the Colts coming off a bye week and there’s no reason to believe the Rams will pull off an upset.
49ers over Texans– For two weeks, San Francisco had to endure the bitter taste of a 45-10 home loss to Atlanta. The 49ers look to come back and prove they are for real and Michael Crabtree, in his debut game, hopes to contribute to that cause.
Chargers over Chiefs– In a game that can go either way, I’m taking Darren Sproles and San Diego’s special teams to be the difference maker in this matchup.
Packers over Browns– It’s not enough that Cleveland dwells in the bottom half of the league in just about every statistical category, now 12 of their players have been diagnosed with the flu. The dawg days for the dawg pound continue.
Steelers over Vikings– Okay, I was a week early in picking Minnesota’s first loss. Dick Labeau will release the hounds and force the Vikings to turn the ball over.
Patriots over Buccaneers– In a continued effort to market the National Football League as a global game, this matchup will be settled in London, England. I can’t say London is ready to fully embrace American football, but it will at least be amazed by New England’s dominance.
Panthers over Bills– Carolina pass defense only allows 157 passing yards a game, which is second best in the league. Even if Owens was awarded for his boy scout behavior, I’m not sure it would be enough for Buffalo pull off another upset win.
Jets over Raiders– What is happening to Gang Green? They are not what they were three weeks ago. Oakland is physical enough to get a second consecutive win, but JaMarcus Russell is this team’s Achilles’ heel. I’m looking for Rex Ryan to expose that handicap.
Bengals over Bears– Yes, this is homecoming weekend for Cedric Benson, but it’ll be anything but ceremonial. Tension will be thick, but Benson will get over it with an outing that’ll make Chicago regret letting him go.
Saints over Dolphins– Is there another team in 2009 that made a bigger statement than New Orleans? The Saints are truly Giant Killers. I don’t want to get ahead of myself and plug them into the Super Bowl, but at a minimum, you have to take notice of what this team has done thus far.
Giants over Cardinals– New York came across a bully that was bigger and it showed. The G-Men plan to take out their frustrations on an Arizona team that is struggling to run the ball.
Eagles over Redskins– Washington has a tendency to play to the level of its competition. Knowing this, I was tempted to go with the upset. Then Oakland messed things up by upsetting Philly. The Eagles will find a cure in the Redskins to help them get over the embarrassment of the previous week.
As mentioned earlier, I improved a game to 9-5 in week six, which puts me at 59-31 for the season. The mountain is getting rockier, but my upward climb continues. As always, enjoy the games and come back to see what I have in store next week.
By Antoine Hoffman