And the 2011 season trudges on. The rumor is that Vick will be back this week, and I have to ask: why? Season's over, man. The Eagles just gave him a fairly sizable contract. Why are they risking a guy who's already banged up on meaningless games? Same thing goes for all the others who are banged up: Jeremy Maclin, LeSean McCoy, Nnamdi Asomugha, DRC...everybody. Why not play the second and third team guys and see what they have? Sure, Vick is fun to watch and all, but really, this just seems pointless.
The Eagles are traveling to Miami to take on the Dolphins this week. Both teams are 4-8. The Dolphins, by way of a reminder, have won 4 of the last 5. The Eagles have lost 4 of the past 5. Although the Dolphins are not good against the pass, they are excellent against the run. You may recall that there's this guy? Named LeSean McCoy? Who's a back and has been pretty much the only consistently good part of the entire season.
But ultimately the trend line may be all we need to know. The Fins seem to be all in fighting for their coach's job. The Eagles seem to be, well, not.
In the rest of the matchups:
Browns at Steelers: Steelers. Poor Browns.
Buccaneers at Jaguars: Both teams are in trouble, but a missing head coach is worse than a missing QB. Bucs.
Texans at Bengals: Sorry, Texans, you know I love you, but the Bengals are surging, and need every game to keep them in the AFC wildcard hunt at this point. Meanwhile, the Texans have a 2 game lead in the south with 4 games to play. While they haven't locked up the south, they are 4-0 in their division. Not that they aren't motivated, of course, just that I suspect the Bengals are a bit more motivated at this point. Bengals.
Chiefs at Jets: I have to think the Jets aren't going to drop a critical game at home, because they need every game at this point to stay in the AFC wildcard race themselves. And it's going to be a defensive battle, and that favors the Jets, too. Jets.
Vikings at Lions: Lions. Who are right in it for the NFC wildcard. But they gotta get their anger issues under control.
Colts at Ravens: Ravens. Move along.
Saints at Titans: Saints. Same.
Falcons at Panthers: Falcons. Who also need this game to stay in the NFC wildcard race. I love Cam, but he makes rookie mistakes that the Falcons will take advantage of.
Patriots at Redskins: Pats. Ouch.
Bears at Broncos: Caleb Hanie versus Tim Tebow? Please. Broncos.
49ers at Cardinals: 49ers. The teams really are sorting themselves out at this point, aren't they?
Bills at Chargers: Oh man, both of these teams are really sliding bad. The Bills, after starting so well, have lost five in a row. The Chargers beat the Jags on Monday, but that ended a SIX game losing streak. So disappointing on both counts. Who's going to win? The Chargers are strong through the air, while the Bills are strong on the ground. The Bills are not great against the pass, and the Chargers are even worse against the run. But you can score a lot faster through the air than you can on the ground, and that favors the Chargers.
Raiders at Packers: Chef Spouse thinks this could be a trap game for the Packers. I think the Raiders are going to be playing an undefeated Pack at Lambeau in the cold. To me, that says Packers.
Giants at Cowboys: Good choice for the Sunday night game, NFL! The Giants seem to be entering their typical end of season slide. The Cowboys are always a risk to implode. And being at home doesn't seem to help them. I think Cowboys, but I could see this going either way. And if the Cowboys do win this, I think the Giants will win in week 17, by the way.
Rams at Seahawks: Are you going to bother to watch this? Because I have to tell you, I have holiday shopping to do, and it's been an INSANELY busy month. I could really use that time for shopping, or wrapping, or a trip to the post office... lots of stuff. Oh -- the pick? Seahawks. The Rams definitely don't have enough juice to take out Seattle's 12th man.