Arizona at Dallas
The Tuna has the Cowboys rolling and Emmitt Smith makes his return to Dallas. It won't be a happy one for him as the Cowboys win.
Cincinnati at Buffalo
It looks like defenses are finding a way to stop Drew Bledsoe and co. on offense, but unless the Bengals can run the ball effectively, the Bills are the pick. I can't trust Jon Kitna to win the game against a pretty good Bills defense.
Denver at Kansas City
This will be a big test for Jake Plummer who may or may not have Clinton Portis in the lineup. Will he continue his improvement? Meanwhile, the Chiefs had their defense and Dante Hall dig them out of trouble in Baltimore after a less than stellar performance from their big game offense. But this game will be at Arrowhead Stadium, the single greatest home field advantage in the NFL. The Chiefs are the pick.
Miami at N.Y. Giants
The Dolphins are rolling again and unlike many teams, the bye week came at a perfect time. The Giants have been uncharacteristically bad on defense, currently last in the NFC. They will need to step it up against a Dolphins team that will grind out the clock. Miami wins.
Minnesota at Atlanta
Despite Randy Moss' great numbers last week, the Vikings are establishing themselves as a power running team under Mike Tice. That should be more than enough against a Falcons team still trying to find an identity without Michael Vick. Minnesota in a wash.
New Orleans at Carolina
Jim Haslett is under fire in New Orleans and with good reason. The Saints are listless. The Panthers are swarming on defense and with Stephen Davis running, powerful offensively. I like Carolina to stay undefeated.
Oakland at Chicago
Well something woke up the Oakland offense, it was the very bad Chargers defense. They get just as easy a target in the Windy City. Oakland easily.
Seattle at Green Bay
Mike Holmgren makes his return to Lambeau Field and brings a pretty good team into town with him. Brett Farve has shaken off some of the rust he's shown this season. It sounds strange, but Seattle must contain Ahman Green and make Brett Favre beat them. Perhaps between Holmgren and other former Packers like Ray Rhodes and Matt Hasslebeck, they can find a way to get Favre out of his rhythm. I like Seattle to win.
Tennessee at New England
The Pats nearly pulled out a win last week despite missing 9 starters due to injury. The Titans were so-so offensively, so they left it up to their special teams and no-name defense to win. That's the sign of a good team. Titans keep rolling.
Detroit at San Francisco
The Niners are reeling and Terrell Owens is causing more problems. Not the kind of mindset that they want when facing their former coach who knows the team in and out. Don't think that makes a difference? Ask the Raiders about Jon Gruden. Lions in a minor upset.
Washington at Philadelphia
The Eagles got back some of their momentum and grounded a good offense while doing it. Now they get another in the form of the Washington Redskins. The Redskins have made believers of me, but I think the Eagles will win. I just think the Eagles needed some time to gather themselves before making their move.
ESPN Sunday Night Game
Cleveland at Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh needs to go back to running the ball down people's throats. Luckily for them, Cleveland hasn't exactly shown a great run defense thus far. Just ask Jamal Lewis. Pittsburgh wins.
ABC Monday Night Football
Indianapolis at Tampa Bay
The best game of the week has yet another head coach meeting his former team. Tony Dungy has built a defense in Indianapolis to compliment Peyton Manning and that magnificent offense. But the Bucs are still the Bucs. That defense has stopped offenses of all types. The Colts have been great to this point in the season, but I'll go with that dominating Buccaneers defense for the win.
And of course...
San Diego at Jacksonville
The Battle of the Bulging. The Shrill in Jacksonville. The Clash of the Frightened. Yes, the Jags and Bolts meet to guarantee that will be at least one less team that challenges the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers' winless season. Both teams look to be mirror images of one another. Both have defensive problems, both have lost games by blowing leads late, and both have moved the ball fairly well on offense only to bog down when it mattered the most. The good news for the Chargers is that they will have David Boston back in the fold, hopefully ready and focused, and despite losing in Oakland last week, have been impressive offensively. Byron Leftwich is expected to make only his 2nd career start, but the Chargers seem to have a way of making rookie QBs look like the second coming of Johnny Unitas. I'm going with the Chargers to win, but cautiously. The Jags are just as poised to get their first win of the season and could do it with the quiet but dangerous Fred Taylor.
Do you think Dr. J should be taken out back and shot, should be critiquing tennis matches or needs a lesson in humility? Dr. J answers readers' questions exclusively on The Insiders Sports Network. He can be reached at email@example.com and welcome letters of any kind.
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