Submitted by Jim Hurley on Saturday, October 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM
OUR NFL WEEK 8 QUICK-HITTER PREVIEWS/FORECASTS
By Jim Hurley
In yesterday’s edition of Jim Sez we brought you in-depth previews/forecasts of three big games on this Sunday’s NFL Week 8 docket – Dallas at Detroit, the New York Jets at Cincinnati and Washington at Denver – and now we keep the gridiron beat rollin’ here with a handful of quick-hitter looks at more of Sunday’s action:
In NFL Week 8 play, it’s …
CLEVELAND (3-4) at KANSAS CITY (7-0) – 1 p.m. ET, CBS
The Chiefs are the last team standing with a perfect record and – let’s be frank – this AFC West team has caught some major breaks while playing against a slew of backup/journeymen quarterbacks, and the latest here is Cleveland slinger Jason Campbell, who’s not ever gonna remind anyone of Sammy Baugh!
If KayCee’s pass rush – leading the NFL these days with 35 sacks – busts through on Campbell here, then you might see two or three defensive scores for the Chiefs … is this Las Vegas price tag too low at 7 ½ points?
Spread Note – Kansas City has covered four-of-six games this year when placed in the chalk role.
BUFFALO (3-4) at NEW ORLEANS (5-1) – 1 p.m. ET, CBS
Let’s see what “trend” holds up here inside the Louisiana Superdome:
The host Saints have won two of their first three home games by healthy twin-figure margins (see 31-7 over Arizona in Week 3 and 38-17 over Miami in Week 4) – while six of Buffalo’s first seven games this season under rookie boss Doug Marrone have been decided by a TD or less, and note five of these games actually were decided by 3 points or less.
If the heavy-duty dog Bills (+ 11) are gonna keep this one close – or even pull the shocker – then they’ll have to junk up a Saints’ passing game that ranks second in the league (averaging 311 yards a game) although it’s not clear if TE Jimmy Graham (his 593 receiving yards leads all tight ends) will be green-lighted here after a recent foot injury.
Gut feeling is Saints QB Drew Brees will get the ball to speedy RB Darren Sproles more than a handful of times with “swing” passes – if they go for chunk yards, the Saints win by two TDs or more.
If the Bills’ defense that has not been especially stout can stick him with minimal gains, we could see another down-to-the-wire game involving Buffalo.
Spread Note – New Orleans is an amazing 16-4 against the odds in its last 20 home games while dating back to the 2011 season.
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MIAMI (3-3) at NEW ENGLAND (5-2) – 1 p.m. ET, CBS
The Patriots’ whined plenty about that “pushing” penalty called on ‘em in overtime of last week’s 30-27 loss to the New York Jets, and you do have to wonder if Bill Belichick’s club will be able to “turn the page” here against a slumping Dolphins club that hasn’t won a game since Sept. 22nd.
The Fish game plan here should be to hammer away at a short-handed New England defense that currently ranks 30th in the league in rush defense (allowing 127.1 ypg), but that isn’t exactly Miami’s strength (see 25th-best rush attack in the NFL).
Spread Note – Miami is a solid 18-12 versus the vig when in the underdog role dating back to the start of 2010.
PITTSBURGH (2-4) at OAKLAND (2-4) – 4:05 p.m. ET, CBS
Do the Steelers have it in ‘em to make a playoff push this year … or are these recent back-to-back wins against the NY Jets and Baltimore just mirages in an otherwise lost season?
The truth of the matter is Mike Tomlin’s crew has stepped up its play on defense, where the Steelers registered four sacks in each of those aforementioned wins, and don’t forget that here they are facing an Oakland team that’s dealing with a slew of O-line injuries – it might make for a long day for Raiders QB Terrelle Pryor, who already was sacked nine times behind a mix-and-match line a couple of weeks back in Kansas City.
Remember the Raiders had their bye last week.
Spread Note – Pittsburgh’s a rotten 6-14 ATS away since the start of the 2011 season, and that includes a 20-10 loss at 6 ½-point fav Cincinnati back in Week 2 play and a 34-27 loss to 3-point pup Minnesota in a game played in London in Week 4.
On Sunday Night, it’s …
GREEN BAY (4-2) at MINNESOTA (1-5) – 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC
It’s spin-the-wheel time again for the Vikings when it comes to who’s quarterbacking ‘em here … Christian Ponder (bad rib and all) gets the nod here after Josh Freeman suffered a concussion in his godawful showing the other night in a 23-7 loss at the New York Giants.
If Ponder is encouraged by anything here, it’s that the Vikes likely will stay the course and allow RB Adrian Peterson to rush it more than 13 times – what was Minny offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave thinking in that loss to the G-men?
Green Bay – now 3-0 SU (straight-up) and 2-0-1 ATS (against the spread) since the Week 4 bye – must continue to run the ball well behind rookie RB Eddie Lacy (the Packers are the NFL’s sixth-ranked ground attack, if you can believe that) and keep QB Aaron Rodgers in an upright position after he was sacked 10 times in the three games against Minnesota last year.
Spread Note – Green Bay is 9-4 spreadwise against the Vikes since the start of 2007 and that includes last year’s 24-10 triumph as 10 ½-point home favorites in an NFC Wild Card playoff game.
Your attention please …
My handicappers and bloggers have everything all scoped out and you can get all the NCAA Football and NFL Week 8 Winners when you check with us here at Jim Hurley’s Network at the toll-free # of 1-800-323-4453 or right here online at www.vegassportsmasters.com.
Check with us on game days and remember we have World Series winners too Saturday/Sunday/Monday.
NOTE: Lots more in the next edition of Jim Sez including a Monday Night Football Preview/Forecast – that’s the Seattle Seahawks at the St. Louis Rams.