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Rine: NFL Week 5 Picks

October 5, 2011
By SHAWN RINE - Sports Editor ( , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register


Tennessee 23, Pittsburgh 7

It's gotten bad. I'm talking real bad. The Steelers offensive line can't protect for 2 seconds, the defense couldn't tackle someone who's using a walker, and the starting running back can't find a hole. James Harrison is out, and Big Ben is on the mend. The official demise begins right here.

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Arizona 31, Minnesota 12

This is it, Donovan McNabb. It's put up or shut up time, if Coach Leslie Frazier hasn't already decided otherwise. The guy is probably the only quarterback of our generation more overrated than Peyton Manning (rings, people!). Now Adrian Peterson is complaining about the coaching staff. See a pattern?

Oakland 21, Houston 17

Fact Box

Last Week: 11-5

Overall: 40-24

Who had this as a prime Week 5 matchup? The Raiders showed me more in a losing effort than the Texans did by beating up on the hapless, hurting Steelers. I'm still not convinced Houston is for real, and I won't be until it clinches a playoff berth.

Indianapolis 16

Kansas City 13

Somehow, someway the Chiefs managed to break into the victory column, even if they did so on the strength of five Ryan Succop field goals. You have to figure the Colts are going to luck into one themselves before all is said and done, and this looks to be a perfect place.

Buffalo 32, Philadelphia 21

The wheels are coming off for the Eagles, just as nobody - wait, I did - predicted. Mike Vick was crying because he gets hit, now whining because he doesn't like reporters questions. There are cracks. No, make that gaping holes in the foundation.

Carolina 33, New Orleans 31

I'm digging the Saints' attitude these days. Once known as a finesse team, they're gaining a little toughness. However, Cam Newton and the kiddies have come so close almost all season that you get the feeling it's a matter of time. As in now. Upset special.

Cincinnati 28

Jacksonville 14

All of a sudden the Bengals have clawed back in the race behind the on-again, off-again play of Opie Taylor ... er, Andy Dalton. Maybe the Bengals are actually on to something with going younger. You'd have to also be on something to pick the Jaguars against anyone. A.J. Green has another big day.

N.Y. Giants 41, Seattle 10

He'll never be Tom Brady, but Eli Manning is at least playing like a Pro Bowler (8TD, 2INT). He's getting help from unlikely sources, namely receiver Victor Cruz (11 catches, 225 yards, 2TDs). Meanwhile, Seahawks fans are clamoring for the days of Matt Hasselback at QB.

San Francisco 17

Tampa Bay 14

This could well be a season-defining game for both teams, though the 49ers - win or lose - are probably in better shape given that they play in the NFC West. Josh Freeman showed some guts bringing the Bucs back on Monday night, but I'm not sure he can do it two weeks in a row.

San Diego 26, Denver 12

Is it Tim Tebow time? Have I and everyone else been asking that all season? Kyle Orton puts up a lot of numbers, but falls well short in the only one that matters - victories. Somehow the Chargers are hanging in there despite getting next-to-nothing from Antonio Gates and Malcolm Floyd.

New England 32

N.Y. Jets 13

The only thing better than seeing the Eagles fail, is watching Rex Ryan writhe in misery. Once again the Jets are the tackling champs, but they offer little substance. That battle of the GQ quarterbacks (seriously, enough silly magazine shoots, boys) goes to Brady.

Green Bay 27, Atlanta 23

For many this was going to be a preview of the NFC Championship. Right now though, the Packers look so good the NFL should consider giving them a bye into the Super Bowl. One thing I don't like, however, is Aaron Rogers turning and taunting defenders with his ridiculous 'championship belt' pose after scoring.


Chicago 22, Detroit 20

The Cardiac Cats pulled off another stunner last week, rallying from 20 down against the Cowboys. I'm not sure how anyone covers Calvin Johnson, because he's catching touchdowns over three people at a time. The unbeaten run ends here, though.

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