We here at ROTB continue with our weekly 'expert' picks against the spread, and we now reach the early Sunday games. The Tennessee Titans, Chicago Bears, Cincinnati Bengals and New York all trying to stay in or get into the playoff picture with just a couple more weeks left in the regular season.
With our early picks, we have half of the games picked for the underdog.
Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills (no line): The Dolphins lost one game and their coach got fired. Now they get a chance to recover and go to Buffalo and face a reeling Bills team. At this point, the Dolphins will be playing hard for Todd Bowles, who has done a great job with the defense this season, as the players will be playing for their 2012 jobs. Pick: Miami.
Seattle Seahawks at Chicago Bears (-3.5): The Seahawks are clinging to the faintest hope of getting into the playoffs and the Bears will attempt to recover from their meltdown that gave Tim Tebow another comeback win. Seattle's run defense is solid and Chicago has no passing offense. They will have more success against the Bears defense than did Denver for the earlier part of the game. Seattle won't get shut down as easily. They have their Skittles man in Marshawn Lynch. Pick: Seahawks, +3.5.
Tennessee Titans at Indianapolis Colts (+6.5): We will continue the trend of simply dismissing the Colts. Yes, they covered the last two weeks against New England and Baltimore, but those were large spreads. We just can't bet on Andrew Luck's future team. Pick: Titans, -6.5.
Cincinnati Bengals at St. Louis Rams (+6.0): Both teams are struggling, but the Rams are awful. Cincinnati has much to play for still as they try to land a wild card spot in the AFC. Run Cedric Benson because the Rams can't stop the run. Pick: Bengals, -6.0.
New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings (+7.0): Drew Brees is another we generally don't bet against. We know that the Saints offense seems to be exponentially better in the Superdome, but Brees has this team rolling. Pick: Saints, -7.0.
Washington Redskins at New York Giants (-7.0): For some reason, the Redskins like close games. The trend will continue. We don't expect a Washington victory, but we expect it to go down to the wire. Rex Grossman went toe to toe against Tom Brady. The Giants defense can be scored upon. Pick: Redskins, +7.0.
Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans (-6.5): The Texans' magic season continues, but we feel the bubble bursts this week, especially after they have already clinched their division. They are fighting for home field and a bye, but Cam Newton will spoil things. Pick: Panthers, +6.5.
Stay tuned for the late game picks later today.