San Diego +4 at NEW ENGLAND, Eagles +8 at NEW ORLEANS
San Diego +4 at NEW ENGLAND
Somebody other than the Patriots is going to win in Foxborough in January, someday. After I got spanked by both favorites yesterday, I’d put my money on either of them, particularly the Rams. I’m not so sure about the Chargers, even though they own road wins over the Steelers, Chiefs and Seahawks. Shutting down a largely one-dimensional rookie quarterback and an offense of relative no-names last week in Baltimore isn’t the same as stopping the Brady Bunch, who are 8-0 at home (6-2 ATS) this season and last lost in the divisional round in 2010. I like Rivers’ experience and savvy, but Los Angeles has had a great run over the last 15 weeks; New England has had a great run over the last 15 years and doesn’t get fazed by much once the calendar turns to the new year. If this season is going to be viewed as the beginning of the end of the Patriots’ dynasty, it’ll have to wait another week.
Pick: Patriots -4
Eagles +8 at NEW ORLEANS
It won’t be 48-7 again, but it won’t end with a field goal try kissing the upright and crossbar either (how I wish Bill Raftery had been in the booth to call that one). It’s always tough laying these kinds of points, and it’s certainly not easy to step off the Birds’ bandwagon after what they’ve done over the past six weeks. But New Orleans has too much firepower, even though their scoring has tailed off since the win over the Eagles on Nov. 18. Philly is playing its fifth road game in the last six weeks and it’s a lot to ask to extend the magic one more time. Taking the points here means you’re playing for a backdoor cover, in my humble opinion, and that’s always ulcer-inducing. I see the Saints pulling away in the second half and moving on to a rematch with the Rams.
Pick: Saints -8