It's just week 3 and already 10 teams - roughly a third of the league - are having quarterback issues caused by either ineffectiveness or injury. Take for instance the situation at Philadelphia with Michael Vick and Kevin Kolb. Remember there's nothing more permanent than change.
That said, let's get to my Week 3 picks.
GAMES THAT START AT 1:OO P.M.
SAN FRANCISCO (-2 ½) at KANSAS CITY - The Chiefs have a solid pass rush, but their secondary has some issues, so Alex Smith should have a pretty solid performance for the 49ers. San Francisco, so far, has surrendered just 2.8 yards per rush. The 49ers will concentrate on the Chiefs' ground attack, forcing Cassel to beat them in the air. Cassel has completed just 52% of his passes this year. OOP'S SCOOP: 49ERS 26 - 14.
DETROIT at MINNESOTA (-10 ½) - Except for Adrian Peterson things aren't looking good for the Vikings offense. Sidney Rice is out, Harvin is playing hurt and Favre is still rusty. Fortunately, the Lions are coming to town. The Lions are having run defense problems, so expect Peterson to have a big day. The Lions' secondary is rated 31st in the league giving up an average of 9 ½ yards per pass attempt, so I expect Favre to come out of his slump. This is a must win for the Vikings. OOP'S SCOOP: Vikings 38-14.
BUFFALO at NEW ENGLAND (-14) - - The Bills offense is a disaster area. The quarterback situation is in shambles - sitting Trent Edwards in favor of Ryan Fitzpatrick (who I believe is equally inept). New England losing Kevin Faulk to a torn ACL is a concern, but the Pats have won 18 of the last 19 meetings. Make it 19 out of 20. OOP'S SCOOP: Pats 36-13.
ATLANTA at NEW ORLEANS (-4) - - Reggie Bush will be missed (6+ weeks with a broken leg). Atlanta's defense against the run has been stiff, but their secondary is not ranked in the top half of the NFL, and they're facing Drew Brees. There is no love lost between the Falcons and the Saints. I look for both teams to play hard and put up a lot of points. OOP'S SCOOP: Saints 30-27
TENNESSEE at N.Y. GIANTS (-3) - - The Titans had 7 turnovers last week in a sloppy loss against Pittsburg. Johnson had an 85-yard TD called back on a holding penalty. The Giants gave up 163 rushing yards last week, so I look for Johnson to have another banner day. The Titans bring a great deal of pressure (8 sacks in 2 weeks) and Manning doesn't have the best protection in the world. OOP'S SCOOP: Titans 24-17
CLEVELAND at BALTIMORE (-10 ½) - - I look for Joe Flaco to bounce back after his 4 INT performance last week. He won't have everybody in his face like he did against the Bengals. Baltimore has too many weapons for the Browns' defense. It's unlikely Delhomme will play, so the Ravens' defense will be licking their chops with Wallace forced into 3rd and long. That could prove disastrous for Cleveland. OOP'S SCOOP: Ravens 27-9
DALLAS at HOUSTON (-3) - - The Cowboys won't be able to run against the Texans - or anyone else - but Romo could have success through the air as the Texans' secondary ranks 30th against the pass (9.0 yards per attempt). Dallas has a strong defense against the run which will force Matt Schaub upstairs. I look for the Texans to have some issues with pass protection, especially with Duante Brown's four-game suspension. OOP'S SCOOP: Cowboys 27-20.
PITTSBURG (-2 ½) at TAMPA BAY - - The Steelers won last week simply because of 7 Titan turnovers and a kick-off return. This game will be up to Josh Freeman as Cadillac Williams won't be able to run against the Steelers (Chris Johnson couldn't last week either). The Bucs had 3 sacks last week, so they are capable of putting on the pressure. OOP'S SCOOP: Bucs 20-10.
CINCINNATI (-3 ½) at CAROLINA - - Jimmy Clausen has been given the nod over Matt Moore in the starting position. The Panthers must establish the run to give him a chance. The Panthers are tied for 2nd with 7 sacks allowed this season. The Panthers are 6th against the rush, so don't look forward to the Bengals establishing a ground attack. Neither of these teams is capable of putting up big numbers. In a close one. OOP'S SCOOP: Bengals 20-17.
GAMES THAT START AT 4;00 P.M.
PHILADELPHIA (-3) at JACKSONVILLE - - Everybody thought that Kevin Kolb was going to start, but Andy Reid had a surprising change of mind and announced that Michael Vick had the job. The Jaguars are currently last versus the pass (10.2 YPA and they aren't very good against the run either (24th in the NFL) so the Eagles should be able to score at will. OOP'S SCOOP: Eagles 34-17.
WASHINGTON (-4) at ST. LOUIS - - The Rams are ranked 20th against the pass and they haven't been up against a good passer yet, so look for a well-protected Donavan McNabb to have another big game. He had 426 yards against the Texans last week. This will be Bradford's toughest test to date, but he has done a pretty fair job holding his own in his rookie season. OOP'S SCOOP: Redskins 27-19.
INDIANAPOLIS (-5 ½) at DENVER - - The Colts should be able to move up and down the field at will. The Broncos are 22nd versus the pass and their run defense is even worse. Denver has not been able to establish a running game with Moreno, but Kyle Orton has been playing extremely well, so look for the Broncos to score, but not as easily as Peyton and company. OOP'S SCOOP: Colts 34-20.
OAKLAND at ARIZONA (-4) - - It looks like Bruce Gradkowski will start for the Raiders. He is not a physically gifted quarterback, but he is smart and particularly accurate. Darren McFadden should have a big game against an awful Arizona defense. Although Derek Anderson is a better option than Matt Leinart, he is playing pitifully (54% completion percentage). OOP'S SCOOP: Oakland 28-24.
SAN DIEGO (-5 ½) at SEATTLE - - Seattle's secondary has issues and Rivers knows it. Don't expect much from the Chargers' running game, as Seattle's run defense is solid. Matt Hasselbeck threw 3 INTs last week, while the Chargers collected four interceptions. That sounds like a recipe for disaster. OOP'S SCOOP: Chargers 27-17.
N.Y. JETS at MIAMI (-1 ½) - - The Dolphins' defense is 3rd against the pass and they put a lot of pressure on the quarterback (6 sacks so far). The Jets, however, will be able to run against the Dolphins. LaDaimian Tomlinson has his quickness back. Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams won't find a lot of running room against the Jets 2nd-ranked defense. OOP'S SCOOP: Jets 21-10.
GREEN BAY (-3) at CHICAGO - - No matter how good a team's secondary is, there is no stopping a quarterback of Aaron Rogers' ability. In order to win this game the Bears will have to put a lot of pressure on Rogers, and I just don't see that happening. Cutler has been under a lot of pressure all season and Green Bay's Clay Matthews (6 sacks in 2 games) will see to it that he does once again. OOP'S SCOOP: Packers 31-24.
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