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Sara Foss's Thinking It Through
by Sara Foss

Thinking It Through

A Daily Gazette life blog
Her column and blog rolled into one

NFL Picks, Week 7

Every year I participate in a Pigskin Pick ’em group organized by an obnoxious friend of mine from high school who spends his Sundays doing nothing but watching NFL football. I spend very little time watching football, and yet I continue to dream of beating him. And so every week I dutifully make my picks.

From my standpoint, last week was a debacle. None of the games where the teams seemed evenly matched broke my way, and teams in which I had invested great confidence, such as the New England Patriots, completely choked. I never thought I’d say this, but thank God for Peyton Manning, who made life slightly less disastrous by leading his team to a shocking second-half comeback over the Chargers. (Remember when Tom Brady used to do stuff like that?) Nevertheless, I need to pick up my game this week, as my obnoxious friend is two points ahead of me.

As always, the winning teams are in caps.

Seattle at SAN FRANCISCO — I’m totally furious at San Francisco. Not because the Giants beat them. But because the 49ers played so badly, scoring only three points while the Giants did whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted. Meanwhile, the fourth-quarter collapse of the Patriots made Seahawks QB Russell Wilson look like a future hall-of-famer ... or at least like he belongs in the league. My prediction: Things will return to normal this week when the 49ers return to dominance, and Seattle reveals that they are not yet an elite team.

Tennessee at BUFFALO — Buffalo’s win last week in Arizona was another big surprise, at least for me, though I was kicking myself for not picking Tennessee. Ah, well. Hindsight is 20-20, as they say. In any case, I don’t think either the Titans or the Bills to surprise me this week.

Cleveland at INDIANAPOLIS — The only reason Cleveland won last week is because I made a snide remark about their winless record in my column (click here for said snide remark). That won’t happen this week, as I plan to refrain from bashing the Browns in light of their surprising victory over the Bengals. Even so, I can’t bring myself to pick them to win. Look for a rebound game from Colts rookie QB Andrew Luck.

GREEN BAY at St. Louis — The Packers looked like the Packers we all know and love last week, while the Rams looked like the Rams. And I expect that trend will continue this week.

Arizona at MINNESOTA — After a hot start, it looks like the Cardinals are reverting to typically mediocre form. The Vikings had a bit of a setback last week, when they got crushed by the Redskins, but a return home should help them pick up a win on Sunday.

Washington at NEW YORK GIANTS — Redskins QB Robert Griffin III was awesome last week, but I don’t think he can lead his team to victory against the Giants, who suddenly look like the best team in the league. Of course, the Giants sometimes play down to their competition, so it wouldn’t be a complete surprise if Washington pulled out a win.

NEW ORLEANS at Tampa Bay — New Orleans is coming off a bye week and a pretty commanding victory, and they should be able to beat a consistently disappointing Tampa Bay team.

DALLAS at Carolina — I picked the Panthers a couple weeks ago, and I lived to regret it. So I guess I’ll pick Dallas, even though they can’t be trusted, and this is exactly the sort of game they excel in losing — a game where they’re clearly the superior team.

Baltimore at HOUSTON — This game should be entertaining. I’m picking the Texans for two reasons: They’re at home, and they’re missing Ray Lewis. Also, they have the better quarterback. Sorry, Joe Flacco. You’re just not that great.

Jacksonville at OAKLAND — Every week there’s a game where two god-awful teams play each other and if you watch it you feel like holding your nose. Ladies and gentlemen, Jacksonville at Oakland is this week’s hold-your-nose-game! These teams are both 1-4, which means that a lot is riding on the outcome: After this game, one of these teams will have a 2-4 record! I’m picking Oakland, but who knows?

New York Jets at NEW ENGLAND — I’m pretty angry at the New England Patriots, and if they don’t beat Team Blowhard on Sunday, I’m going to be even angrier. Right now, the Patriots are playing like an 8-8 team, as is almost every other team in their division, including the Jets. Will the Pats get it together on Sunday? Or will they make a bunch of stupid mistakes? I’m going with the former.

Pittsburgh at CINCINNATI — It’s hard to know what to do here. The Bengals have been pretty blah in recent weeks, and I’ve lost some of my confidence in the red-headed quarterback. But the Steelers aren’t any better. So I guess I’ll take Cincinnati, but it’s not a choice I’m particularly enthusiastic about.

Detroit at CHICAGO — Don’t be fooled by Detroit’s road victory last week against a lousy Eagles team: The Lions really aren’t very good. But Chicago is. And the Bears are coming off a bye week. And they should crush the Lions.

Week 6 results:

Me: 5-9 Overall: 56-35
My obnoxious friend: 5-9 Overall: 58-33

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