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Recent news, scores, odds, free picks, betting advice, and much more for National Football League (NFL) from the Wayne Allyn Root and the WinningEdge!

NFL TOP 10: WEEK #9

NFL TOP 10: WEEK #9

by Wayne Allyn Root

We have reached the halfway mark and need to analyze some things that we missed earlier or never saw coming. Most figured entering the NFL season that Seattle would be on top. At 5-3, they are struggling somewhat not only on the field but in the clubhouse. This writer/handicapper has warned everyone since week 2 that this was not last years Championship team. The 49er’s are not even in the Top 10 and who saw that coming. A very popular team by the betting public was Cincinnati and they won just 1 game in October. Let’s group the following together and take a look after week 8: Dallas (predicted to have break out season by WAR), Philadelphia, Arizona, Detroit have a combined record of 23-7. This is what makes handicapping the NFL by the public so difficult. Who would have seen that coming? The following teams are still on last years mode and their reputation of their past. Seattle, San Francisco, Green Bay, Cincinnati and New England have combined for a 23-13-1 mark. Remember group 1 was 23-7. Not bad but in terms of handicapping but these 5 teams play as favorites most of their games while the 23-7 group’s value is there in terms of easy winners. Wayne Root is ranked #6 handicapper in USA in NFL which surprised very few. If you saw the first 8 weeks coming as I did, then my hat is off to you and a huge congratulations is in order. Job well done. If you are looking for consistency, consider this: That’s after last year (2013) where Wayne Root finished #7 in USA in NFL handicapping. The second half of the season will be just as remarkable and profitable.
1) DENVER—The Broncos handed it to San Diego last Thursday as they scored 35 points in a game that was all Manning. Now with the added 3 days of rest for his 39 year old body, it’s off to play New England where Tom Brady hung a 51 spot on the Bears. This is advertised as the game of the season as both QB’s are peaking at the same time. A year ago, Denver blew a 24-0 lead and lost in OT during the regular season. They paid them back in the AFC Championship game.
2) NEW ENGLAND—Tom Brady connected on four TD passes last week against the troubled Bears. He finished the day by throwing 20 straight completed passes. Maybe Kansas City woke a sleeping Bear as the Pats were 4-0 in October. We’ll see how November falls as they play Denver; a team they lost to in the AFC Championship game last year.
3) ARIZONA—The Carson Palmer game plan is working to perfection. He throws short accurate passes and then the wide receivers run like hell. Last week it was incredible as the Cardinals had 193 yards after the catch. Their second most since 2006. Add their defense into the mix and they’ll be hard to catch in the NFC West. Speaking of catching, they may get to catch Dallas at the right time this week with Romo hurting.
4) DALLAS—We have to say in a rivalry game like the Cowboys and Skins play, anything can happen so with that in mind and Romo going down( even though Brandon Weaton played well), the punishment must fit the crime and their drop off is not so severe. But as we move forward, how much pounding can Tony Romo and DeMarco Murray take? Jerry Jones needs to quit being a quack doctor and realize there is a major difference between playing with pain and playing injured. He’s being an ass! They host the Cardinals this week so no easy task beating this team if injured.
5) DETROIT—The Lions went to London and almost got thrown off a bridge. Trailing 21-0, who would have given them a chance other than luck and destiny and the Atlanta Falcons? They even got 2 field goal tries with :02 sec left in the game after missing FG #1 on a delay of game penalty and then sent #2 thru the uprights. The get a bye week and should come out fighting with Calvin “Megathron” Johnson back so these wins without him were huge.
6) PHILADELPHIA—The Eagles missed an opportunity last week as they came up on the short end against the Arizona Cardinals. In their 2 losses, if was left on the 1 yard line in San Francisco and a last minute score for the Cardinals and then their own penalty to wipe out a TD pass. They travel to Houston where defense prevails and will put Nick Foles to the ultimate test. They are a small favorite.
7) GREEN BAY—The Packers marched into New Orleans and the Saints boxed them up and sent them marching out with plenty of yardage but not enough points scored to win. It was all Eddy Lacy as he had a career-high 182 yards rushing and 123 receiving yards. They need to find other “outs” on their offense as Aaron Rodgers can get the ball to anybody so why is Lacy doing all the work? They can work on that this week during their bye.
8) SAN DIEGO—This is a dangerous under-the-radar team. They get little respect but on the other hand, little criticism. Their defense is awesome in a secondary that compliments their pass rush. Only Carson Palmer has throw for more than 300 yards so far this season against them which includes the likes of Russell Wilson and Peyton Manning. And if you’re not into their defense, they have Philip Rivers with a career year at QB. They will need everything clicking as they make that cross country trip to play Miami.
9) INDIANAPOLIS—Did the Colts have an off night and were exposed or did Ben Roethlisberger have the best game of his career? Ben was 40-of-49 for 522 yards with 6 TD’s. That was history in the making as he is the first QB to throw for 500 yards in a game twice. The Colts just could not hang with that. They entered with the best third down defense in the NFL. They left scratching their helmets and now head to New York on Monday to play the Giants.
10) SEATTLE—It was all Russell Wilson on the last drive while playing Carolina. He was 4-of-4 for 53 yards and a TD. The Seahawks just don’t play well at the Carolina venue. This was the leadership needed to quiet the off the field troubles that found Percy Harvin leaving and the locker room in disagreement. But winning a game like that has a way of replacing problems with enthusiasm. Now it’s back home to play Oakland to put those troubles away forever as a bad memory. There are new and exciting days ahead….well maybe….they still have a disgruntled running back that won’t be getting a new contract from the Seahawks in the name of Marshawn Lynch. He’s 28 and running backs are a dime a dozen and he’s not having a season to remember.
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TEAMS #11 THRU #15 ARE THE MOST AWESOME GROUP I CAN REMEMBER
11) SAN FRANCISCO—Kaepernick is the weak link. Defense is good. WR’s are great. Gore is perfect.
12) CINCINNATI—Easy schedule ahead. They should win 4 of their next 5 games.
13) BALTIMORE—This team is balanced and the defense is stronger than most thought.
14) PITTSBURGH—Never count out a veteran QB with a winners attitude. It spreads to all teammates.
15) BUFFALO BILLS–This team never quit in the past and will not quit with their new Owner now.

THE NFL TOP 10 REPORT: WEEK # 8

THE NFL TOP 10 REPORT: WEEK # 8

by Wayne Allyn Root
It was said here first throughout these Top 10 writings that Seattle was not last years team. Now with “Give Percy no Mercy” gone to the Jets and the Seahawks 0-2 the past 2 weeks, it’s anyone’s game. But, Seattle is still a great team and a dangerous team so they just need to get the chemistry back and rush the QB. Denver is playing just awesome and has a huge game Thursday against San Diego ( fresh off a “look-ahead” loss to the Chiefs.) The defense is helping Andrew Luck in Indianapolis and the Eagles are flying high. Meanwhile, Dallas is the surprise (except to WAR) team of the NFL and continue to win. There’s a lot of football left but for Week #8, it’s Denver at the top.
1) DENVER—Is Von Miller more important to the Broncos team than Peyton. No, but he’s tearing up the offenses and has an NFL leading 8 sacks. The Bronco defense is more improved than the Broncos offense. Congrats to Peyton Manning for breaking Brett Farve’s record of TD passes. The Broncos have a task ahead this week as they entertain the Chargers and are more than a TD favorite.
2) DALLAS—Another record is broken. In 1958, Jim Brown opened the season with 6 straight 100 yards+ of rushing and now that record belongs to Demarco Murray with 7 in a row. The Cowboys play hated division rival this week as the Redskins come into the Jerry Jones house with a 3rd string Colt McCoy QB and some missing defensive pieces. Cowboys need to stay injured free.
3) PHILADELPHIA—It is said that looking back to Championship teams, TO’s and special teams were a major part of their success. Of the 21 TD’s the Eagles have this season, 7 have come from that route. This week off a bye, Philly is heading to the desert to play Arizona and should be a “live” underdog getting 2.5 points. But Carson palmer may have other thoughts. It will be a good game.
4) INDIANAPOLIS—Andrew Luck has the offense on fire. In the past, it had to be Luck outscoring the other team to win in high scoring affairs. But when and where did this defense come from. In the past 5 weeks, the Colts defense has stopped the opposition on 3rd down 43 of 51 attempts. Both sides of the ball are crushing the opponents. They travel to play the Steelers this week and see if Ben R can complete a 3rd down play.
5) ARIZONA—They sit at the top of the NFC West. Who would have thought they’d be ahead of Seattle and San Francisco? Carson Palmer is back and for those not scoring; he’s 10-2 in his past 12 starts to go with a fantastic defense. With his wide outs, they could go a long way so don’t count these guys out. They may be the real deal.
6) GREEN BAY—The Pack seems to never leave so it’s hard to say, “The Pack is Back” (as long as Aaron Rodgers is there). With four straight games with 3 touchdowns and no INT’s, he gets to break that record this week in New Orleans. It shouldn’t be that hard as the Saints defense is ranked 29th in defensive efficiency.
7) BALTIMORE—The Ravens destroyed the Falcons last week by 22 points. Their margin of victory is the NFL’s highest at 12.7. This week they may have revenge on their mind from week 1 as they play a team that has a chance to go winless in October in Cincinnati. Something has to give in terms of streaks.
8) NEW ENGLAND—The Patriots beat the Jets last Thursday and have had a much needed 10 day break. They play Chicago this week. Brady is 3-0 against them and Chicago couldn’t wait to leave town after a 0-3 home start in home games. What will give as the Pats are 7 point favorite? The word from the locker room is the Bears players “detest” Jay Cutler. After reviewing Cutler sacks etc. it is noticed that his teammates will not offer a hand to pick him off the ground. Maybe the locker room gossip is true. For now, bad chemistry.
9) SAN DIEGO—Check out the Thursday Night Headline: Philip Rivers No. 2-ranked QBR and 5-2 record vs. Peyton Manning No. 1 QBR and a 5-1 record. What a game if all goes to the headlines. Too bad the Chargers are off a loss, or maybe that’s how to defeat a great Bronco team. We’ll see as the Oddsmakers are offering +7.5 points.
10) DETROIT—The Lions are doing things right with their defense. Last week’s 4th quarter against Drew Brees and his Saints were one for the Brees record books. The stopped him and, after it was over, Brees was 0-10 in passing with 1 INT and blew a 2 TD lead and takes another road loss.
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THESE TEAMS WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE
11) SEATTLE—They are 3-3 but not for long. All they need is a pass rush where they rank last in the NFL.
12) SAN FRANCISCO—Another 3-loss team that needs some in house chemistry. Less injuries on the defense will also help.
13) CINCINNATI—Not winning a game in October? The pressure is on this week vs Baltimore this week.
14) KANSAS CITY—They should go from 3-3 to 5-3 with the Rams and Jets up next.
15) PITTSBURGH—Thanks for those last 3 minutes Monday night in the first half.

NFL TOP 10 REPORT

THE NFL WEEK 7 TOP 10 REPORT

by Wayne Allyn Root
For week #7, let’s re-group and step away from the Seattle Seahawks. Maybe chemistry was replaced with cockiness. Maybe extra practice is now called extra interviews. They’re a great team and they have the remainder of the season to prove it. Denver has played the best and the Dallas Cowboys are making a fast track to the top. Excuse my bragging- but I was the only football expert in America who saw this coming. I predicted Dallas would shock the critics and doubters with a much improved D and perhaps the most unstoppable offense in the NFL. People laughed. Look who’s smiling now! San Diego showed it can rally on the road and the Eagles are back in many professional’s good graces. After-all, they could be undefeated as their only loss was a stranded 3 feet of real estate needed to defeat San Francisco a few weeks back. The rest of the Top 10 teams need to begin their countdown, get serious and avoid “bad losses” against inferior opponents. Those will not be forgiven and it will show in their standings and possibly keep some teams out of the playoffs all together. (Think Detroit Lions, 2013, games 15 and 16).
1) DENVER—Peyton, Demaryius and Julius. They struggled somewhat last week in New York but still had a win and cover. The MGM Sports Book Director kicked a hole in the wall during the final minutes after that Pick 6 from Geno. This week, it’s a real game and on NBC-TV against a great defense and an ever improving run first offense in the San Francisco 49ers.
2) SAN DIEGO—We might have to give the MVP game ball to Philip Rivers thru the first 6 weeks. His team would never in a million years be sitting at 5-1. Yes they had a road comeback win at Oakland but that was a rivalry game so those things happen. The AFC West is filled with these type of heated matches and another one is this week as the Chargers host Kansas City Chiefs.
3) DALLAS COWBOYS—There are folks that haven’t watched a football game in years that are now claiming to be huge Cowboy fans. They don’t know the difference between a chuck wagon and a bandwagon. But America is “OK” with that. What a “clutch” throw from Tony Romo on 4th and 20. A great win for “America’s Team”. Now, put away the six-shooter so you don’t shoot yourself in the foot Cowboy players. You have a division game against the New York Giants.
4) PHILADELPHIA—Chip Kelly runs everything fast. At the team photo shoot Monday, (where the Raiders took 3 hours), Coach Kelly set a record at 4 minutes and 40 seconds. One of his more proud moments. Speaking of fast, the Eagles soared high and fast as they dominated the Giants. They get a fast 2 weeks off to decide between a Nick Foles good passing game or LeSean McCoy’s 149 yards of rushing from Sunday. And they hope Darren Sproles heals fast!
5) SEATTLE—This may be a “bad” loss for Seattle. Russell Wilson lost for just the second time at home in his career. He was less than 50% on his passes and no touchdowns. But defensively, some blame has to come down on those cocky guys in the secondary. It was 4th and 20 for all the marbles….not a usual Seahawk result as the pass was completed for a first down. Now the hard part, back to back road games; ouch! Thru the first six weeks, the Seahawks have played #’s 1,2 and 3 (Denver, San Diego and Dallas) and ended with an OT win, a loss and a loss. Tuff schedule to say the least. Same story as past SB winners…It aint easy to repeat.
6) ARIZONA—The Cardinals are sitting on top of the NFL’s most difficult division. And without their starting quarterback. The won and somehow covered against Washington and now the travel to play Oakland. This team has chemistry and a will to prove that they should not have been left out of the playoffs last year. They have taken matters into their own hands.
7) SAN FRANCISCO—This is the third team in the top 10 from the NFC West. San Francisco turned it on in the second half of the Monday night game crushing the Rams after trailing by 14 points in the 2nd quarter. They are a “run first” offense team and now that Gore is averaging 5 ypc, Kaepernick can count on the running game and balance it with his passing and running ability. The 49ers have a great defense and will get even better when some of their injured pieces start returning in time for the stretch run.
8) GREEN BAY—Is a 15 to 1 ratio any good? When it’s 15 TD’s to 1 INT’s as in Aaron Rodgers we think it’s incredible. They did what championship teams do last Sunday: Win a game they shouldn’t have and steal a game one the road. They accomplished both at Miami and left town like the mouse that caught the cat. Now it’s time to host the Carolina Panthers and try to stop Cam Newton.
9) INDIANAPOLIS—It was a game that they were supposed to lose. It was for first place in their division. It was on the road and on Primetime Thursday. The Colts looked great defeating Houston Texans despite the tremendous effort of MVP candidate JJ Watt. All night long it was Luck to TY Hilton. When the dust cleared, Hilton had a career night of 223 receiving yards and Andrew Luck was a perfect 9 for 9 in passes to him. Now they entertain a wounded Cincinnati Bengal team.
10) NEW ENGLAND—Tom Brady has had vintage back to back games against Cincinnati and Buffalo. Throughout his career, he’s had Hall-of-Fame games in Ralph Wilson Stadium. In a one score deciding game, Brady had a 3rd and 16 and he made it by 1 yard. He then put the game out of reach the next play with a TD finishing the Bills off 37-22. The only games that count in this division are this week when the Pats host Rex and the Jets this Thursday. I really think that if Ryan ended the season 2-14, but the 2 wins were against New England, he would feel like he’s had a great season. Should be a war in New England!
by Wayne Allyn Root


Wayne Allyn Root

 

WEEK #6 NFL TOP 10 REPORT

WEEK #6 NFL TOP 10 REPORT

by WAYNE ALLYN ROOT
So far, it’s been about last year’s Super Bowl teams; Seattle and Denver. San Diego and Dallas may have been somewhat of a surprise after 5 weeks of play. Both are 4-1 and are on the road this week. Cincinnati caught New England in a bad spot and got thrashed and Green Bay goes to play where the Pats have already lost; in Miami. San Francisco has the “key” gameon Monday Night as they visit St Louis. No telling what’s going on inside the lockerroom of the 49ers. One of the most disappointing losses (of 5 games) last week was in Detroit as Buffalo stole one from the Lions.
1) SEATTLE—The NFL is in trouble. We know the Seahawks can win at home. Now we know they can win and cover on the road, even if it’s in the final 30 seconds of the game. Russell Wilson put on a running clinic on Monday Night against Washington. Now it’s home sweet home where the Cowboys look to roam as an 8 underdog to the Seahawks.
2) DENVER—This was a great bounce back win for the Broncos after having their guts churning for two weeks following the Seahawks “almost win” and then their bye-week. It’s Peyton Manning to Demaryius Thomas as Denver fly’s high to New York to play the J-E-T-S. We’ll see how they perform on the road again as a 7.5 favorite.
3) SAN DIEGO—The Chargers are a solid 4-1 and except for a few point at Arizona could be the only undefeated team in the NFL. Philip Rivers is reaching the pinnacle of the passing game. The Charger defense scored that “rare” shutout and blanked the NY Jets. These guys are for real and head off to the hated Oakland Raiders.
4) CINCINNATI—Want to know the recipe for disaster? Hit the road against a team that was embarrassed the prior week and convert ZERO 3rd downs for the entire game. Now it’s your turn to come off an embarrassing loss as you are at home against Carolina. Seems fair enough with the “on any given Sunday” NFL.
5) PHILADELPHIA—This season the Eagles are living positively by the turn-overs and take-a-way’s. But last week it almost came back and bit them as they tried to blow a 27 point lead the Rams. I like Chip Kelly’s offense but it is so fast that the defense is on the field to long. They rank #28 in both pass defense and run defense. That may get them thru the NFC East but it won’t get them thru the playoffs. And with Dallas at 4-1 and the Giants winning 3 straight, that may not even keep them on the top in their own division.
6) DALLAS—America’s team is ON FIRE!! The Cowboys are on a 4 game winning streak and the bandwagons are filling up fast with old Cowboy fans jumping onboard. They have a great offensive line for DeMarco Murray to run thru. It also give Tony Romo an extra 1.5 second to pass. Murray joins OJ and Jim Brown as the only 3 players to open up the season with 5 straight 100+ yards of rushing. That must make Papa Jerry so proud. Now if they can pull out the upset of the season this week vs Seattle on the road.
7) GREEN BAY—Aaron Rodgers can throw and Eddie Lacy can run. They have had lots of rest since the blowout against the Vikings last Thursday night. They dominated in every facet. This week, they should find out how close they are to really playing well as they will be tested in Miami. A team off their London win and a bye week. The Packers need to remember that the Dolphins have already defeated New England at home.
8) SAN FRANCISCO—The 49ers played well enough to win against Kansas City. So is the question that great teams find a way to win and does the make San Fran great, or that San Francisco played a poor game and squeaked by to victory? At 3-2, this week will tell us a lot about the on and off the field 49ers. They play on Monday Night, on the road, against division foe St Louis Rams. Frank Gore should run for 150+ yards on paper against #30 against the run Rams. Now let’s see him do it on the field against a Jim Fisher coached team.
9) INDIANAPOLIS—Luck is on fire. Last week against the Ravens, he was 8 of 9 for 129 yards in the 4th quarter alone!! And if that wasn’t enough, he was a perfect 4-of-4 for 107 yards on throws of at least 15 yards or longer. Now the first round of the home and home AFC South series championship is this week as they find themselves headed to play defensive minded Houston Texans to see who sits on top after week #6.
10) ARIZONA—The Cardinals would have liked to go into Denver without having to do it off their bye week. The Cards defense kept the game close for awhile but when in Denver and against Manning, you must score to win, not just keep it close. The Cardinals are back to the desert to play Washington, who will show up and give them a great test.
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DO NOT FORGET ABOUT THESE TEAMS
11) NEW ENGLAND—-Brady is declining but we’ll wait for more judgement after playing Buffalo this week.
12) NEW YORK GIANTS—Won 3 games in a row. Impressive. But this one is the most important at Philly.
13) BALTIMORE—This team is fickle. Win, lose and then win and then lose. Bad “D”!
14) DETROIT—It was defense and discipline for the first 4 games. Then the Bills came in and stole one.
15) PITTSBURGH—No one has thrown the long ball better than Ben R this year. He’s connected on 56% of throws at least 15 yards downfield. GO DEEP!

 

WEEK 4 NFL TOP 10

WEEK 4 NFL TOP 10

by WAYNE ALLYN ROOT
With a quarter of the season behind us there are only 2 teams that remain undefeated; Cincinnati and Arizona. It’s amazing that 3 teams usually at the top are just 2-2 with New England, San Francisco and Green Bay. The State of Texas is off to an awesome start as both Dallas and Houston are 3-1. The West Coast is well represented as Seattle, San Diego and Denver all have just one loss. So as this week progresses, many things, thought and theories will emerge as Week 5 is ready to reveal more about this year’s postseason contenders.
1) SEATTLE—Let’s all assume that the Seahawks enjoyed their bye week after pulling out an OT win against Denver. Now it’s off the DC in a Monday Night contest where they stand as 8 point chalk. Kirk Cousins better be more accurate than last week (4 INT’s) against a very talented Seattle secondary.
2) CINCINNATI—The Bengels had a great bye week and sit at 3-0. This week everyone is confused as they play at New England and it’s the Cincinnati talent vs the Patriots off an embarrassing national TV loss. Pat fans are panicking. We’ll see what Brady & Co. is made of after this game is over.
3) DENVER—The Broncos must have been in pain following their “comeback loss” 2 weeks ago at Seattle. Hopefully, Peyton Manning is the type of leader that can re-group his troops. This week it’s against a very good defensive team as the Cardinals come to Mile High. Manning will have to have his game plan together as Arizona remains undefeated.
4) ARIZONA—Maybe the Cardinals are still feeling burned from not making the playoffs last year and that’s the fuel they need to keep their fire lit. They had their bye week and with 2 weeks to prepare for the Broncos, just maybe they have a shocker in store for Denver. The Vegas oddsmakers are offering 7.5 points for anyone that dares to go up against Peyton Manning.
5) SAN DIEGO—This Charger team is the real deal. A one-point loss at Arizona in the season opener is the only thing keeping San Diego from 4-0. Philip Rivers’ 114.5 QBR is the best in the NFL. San Diego laid almost 2 TD’s to the Jags and then went out and won and covered. This week they are at home sweet San Diego playing the J-E-T-S. Now we get to see how they play as 7 point favorites.
6) BALTIMORE—The Ravens disposed of Carolina last Sunday as Steve Smith showed what a taste of payback is like to his former team. Smith has as many multi-TD games with Joe Flacco as he had in three years with Newton. This week he’ll be the centerpiece of the game plan again as the Ravens must compete blow for blow with Andrew Luck and his Colts.
7) PHILADELPHIA—The Eagles continue to set infamous records. Here’s another one to add to this years list: Foles was 0 of 10 with 2 interceptions on passes more than 20 yards downfield. They are also only the 2nd team in NFL history to lose a game with 3 defensive or special teams touchdowns. But the Eagles are 3-1 and last week versus San Francisco, they ended the game on the 1 yard line. This week they host the St Louis Rams as a 7 point fav.
8) DETRIOT—It’s still defense and discipline for the Lions. Some are still waiting for the shoe to drop and “the shooting themselves in the foot” to begin. They defeated the Jets on the road last week and get to host the Buffalo Bill this week. They need a healthy Calvin Johnson to continue to add wins to their record. Playing hurt last week, he finished with 12 receiving yards.
9) DALLAS—The Cowboys put a great game together on both sides of the ball and dismantled the Saints. DeMarco Murray is “the Man!” He freezes the defensive line for that extra second allowing Romo to get set for a pass. Bruce Carter and Barry Church were sensational on D. The ‘Boys better not let it go to their head as they are everyones team to bet after that game and they play in-state rival Houston.
10) SAN FRANCISCO—The 49ers had 14 rushes for 148 yards outside the tackles Sunday, the most rushing yards a team has had outside the tackles since the start of last season. That got them back on track at 2-2. Now it’s time to put the coaching issues behind and build on that win. They’ll have a chance this week as Alex Smith and the Chiefs return so it will be interesting to see if payback is still alive. The 49ers have an QB issue of their own to work on. They need to just focus on their game and leave the hard-ass Harbaugh alone.

 

WEEK 4 OF THE NFL TOP 10

WEEK 4 OF THE NFL TOP 10

by WAYNE ALLY ROOT

Whether you agree, or agree to disagree, the NFL has achieved parity. Exhibit A is our latest Top 10 below. There’s a team not in the Top 10 that usually is near the top. That same team is not even in our Top 10. In fact, they missed out of our Top 15. Coming in at #16 is the San Francisco 49ers. If you agree or disagree, send your comments to my GM, hollis@winningedge.com. We’d like to know what you think. They play at home against the high flying Eagles, so this week’s game is critical. But remember, the Eagles are no pushover standing in the way. They are the UNDEFEATED Philadelphia Eagles!
1) SEATTLE—It sure wasn’t long before Seattle overtook Denver for the number one spot in our poll. And for those who missed this Super Bowl rematch, it was one of the best games this season as Seahawks won and covered in OT. This week they get a bye week, so it must be good to be a Seahawk!!
2) CINCINNATI—Here’s a testament to a great offensive line. Andy Dalton still has not been sacked this year. If that’s not enough, let’s move to the other side of the ball where their defense has the league-best “plus 6″ turnover margin. The two top rules for long term success are…A) Have a solid O-Line and B) Have a “D” that can take the ball away. We’ll be seeing Cincy make a long run into the playoffs this year…and if not coach and QB could be gone. There are no more excuses.
3) PHILADELPHIA—The “magic” of the high flying Eagles. Philadelphia is standing at 3-0 after the first 3 weeks of this season. But what you may not know is that they are the first team ever, in all of football history, to have trailed by double digits in all 3 games to start 3-0. I’m not sure if that was in Chip Kelly’s college to pro playbook. Now we know why Nick Foles is so important to the Eagles.
4) DENVER—You have to give credit when due and it goes to Peyton Manning in the final minutes of the 4th quarter in Seattle. Tough overtime loss in Seattle, but now the Broncos get two weeks to prepare for hosting the Cardinals. Peyton Manning’s next touchdown makes him the second with 500 career TD passes.The off-season additions have really made a difference and Denver is capable to end up where they ended last season- in the Super Bowl.
5) ARIZONA—About the time you become believers of this team, it may be too late. Most have missed a 3 game run as it went from “Let’s see how game 1 goes,” to “Uh oh, we’re on the road without Carson Palmer.” Then they beat the 49ers outright and find themselves at 3-0 and atop of the NFC West. It will be 2 more weeks of “bettor’s doubt” as the Cardinals get a bye week. Nice start Zona…(maybe winning 10 games and missing the playoffs last year still has you burning!!)
6) SAN DIEGO—Our helmets are tipped to the Chargers this week as so many thought (or over-thought) that a week removed from upsetting the Seahawks and having to travel to Buffalo and play the East Coast early game, collapse was their destiny. But hold all bets!! Chargers Win…Chargers Win…despite averaging 2.3 yards rushing. And speaking of rushing, that was the 3rd straight week they’ve rushed for fewer that 3 yards per carry. With ALL their starting running backs hurt, look for more of the same.
7) NEW ENGLAND—You have been alerted that this years Patriots are not the same team of 5 to 10 years ago. Brady is aging. He’s ranked #24 in the league that has many underachievers. If it wasn’t done with mirrors and takeaways (tied for 1st), the Pats would be in trouble. Barely defeating the Raiders at home is not a confidence builder. Now they travel to dangerous Arrowhead Stadium for a Monday Night Football game against Kansas City, who is just coming off a road win at Miami.
8) ATLANTA—Last Thursday against Tampa Bay, The Falcons put on Tampa one of the worst beatings ever witnessed and won 56-14. Let’s just call Julio Jones “Mr. Stud” for that outing, as he caught a career-high five passes thrown at least 15 yards down field, for 120 yards (most such receptions in a game by any receiver this season). The Falcons will be tested on the road again as they have been labeled road losers by many in the know. The are a 3-point chalk against Minnesota.
9) DALLAS—If the Cowboys can get re-established at home, they may be a force as the season progresses. After-all, they are coming off 2 road wins at Tennessee and the Miracle off the Mississippi where in St Louis after trailing 21-0, they found themselves going home will a victory. So far the one thing that we didn’t think needed fixing was Tony Romo. But he’s thrown for 2 TD’s and had 3 INT’s. But as experienced as he is, he’ll figure it out. Meanwhile, let DeMarco Murray, (a Las Vegas product), do it all. He drives linebackers nuts with the screen plays and safeties if he runs a pattern. As I said from day one, the Cowboy “D” is underrated. They lost their 3 best playmakers from one of the worst defenses in NFL history. But I studied this D. The players are young and hungry.
10) BALTIMORE—In back to back games, the Ravens have moved into the top 10 after defeating Pittsburgh and Cleveland, 2 divisional foes. Flacco is better than steady and the entire team has had to go thru the Ray Rice ordeal so it shows the importance of strong leadership (more than ownership). The Ravens entertain the Carolina Panthers this week and are a 3 1/2 point favorite. The catch of the off-season was Steve Smith, as Flacco to Smith is averaging 9.1 yards per catch.
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DO NOT COUNT THESE TEAMS OUT.
11) PITTSBURGH—Strong statement made at Carolina by Ben R.
12) DETROIT—”D” and “D” are the 2 thoughts for Detroit. Defense and Discipline. Their “D” is allowing
2.8 ypr, #2 in the NFL and they haven’t been beating themselves and are staying out of the headlines.
13) INDIANAPOLIS—Whenever Andrew Luck is on the field, most of America is pulling for his team.
14) NEW ORLEANS—Huge road game, (where they don’t excel), at Dallas this week. Win big and they are back in the race for the Super Bowl.
15) GREEN BAY—What a difficult schedule to start out with. We saw this a few years back and then they won them in bunches. Off to Chicago for another hard road game. Rodgers has to step it up!