Scent of victory is in the air

Oct 11, 2005 4:39 AM

Is there more mediocrity than parity in the NFL? I’m not sure, but I know there’s absolutely plenty of both to go around.

Thus, it’s probably no surprise all the divisional races are tight, with no more than one game separating the leaders in six of the eight divisions.

In the NFC East and West, only one game separates all teams in both divisions! The Colts are the lone, NFL runaway with an enormous two-game lead over the Jags in the AFC south.

No compelling trends are lighting up the board as far as favorites, dogs or road teams are concerned. Although, home teams do hold a slight nine-game edge over the road warriors heading into Week 6. This means the "dawgs" have not yet begun to fight, and there’s a scent of victory in the air.

And, as the saying goes, "there’s more fight in the dogs than dogs in the fight." Of course, if they would just bark a little louder, it would help our cause greatly!

With yours truly clearly on the scent, here is a preview of this weekend’s action.

Giants +3½ at Cowboys: It’s a big opportunity for the new guard to step up and knock off the old guard. The old dog, Bledsoe, had his day against the Eagles last Sunday. The G-men are well-rested and ready to unload their young guns on the old man. Eli’s coming on strong! GIANTS.

Panthers +1½ at Lions: There’s trouble brewing in Motown. Matt Millen is stalking the sidelines and applying pressure to Coach Mariucci and his young team. Rogers was suspended for three more games and Roy Williams left Sunday’s game with a leg injury. Carolina’s Davis is running well and starting to get help from DeShaun Foster. Steve Smith continues to amaze me. PANTHERS.

Falcons -6 at Saints: New Orleans can survive on hurricane relief for so long. The Saints’ defense is about as fortified as the levees the city constructed. There’s no Tom Brady in sight this week, so theFalcons should be fine. Michael Vick is still a question mark. But if he can’t go, Schaub will do the job! FALCONS.

Vikings -1½ at Bears: I’m not sure the Vikes have what it takes this season. They only scored 10 points two weeks ago and I’m not sure they’ll do much better in Chicago. Rumors are swirling that Mike Tice has lost control of the team. DA-BEARS.

Skins +7 at Chiefs: The Chiefs have had to chew on that second half collapse to the Eagles for two weeks. The Skins finally broke into the loss column in Denver, but managed to win the money for the third consecutive game. Joe Gibbs’ luck should run out here against a team fighting to save face for all the preseason hype. CHIEFS.

Bengals -4 at Titans: The Titans’ young "D" is starting to kick it up a notch. The Bengals are beginning to lose a little confidence, allowing the Texans to scare them to death and losing at Jacksonville. TITANS.

Jags +4 at Steelers: The Jags offense is finally starting to show some punch. All of Pittsburgh’s running backs are ready to go. However, that’s probably a bad sign for them. The Steelers seem to spark more offense when they’re down to one third-stringer and their backs are against the wall! JAGS.

Browns +4½ at Ravens: Phil Savage used to be one of the main guys responsible for drafting great Ravens players. This year Cleveland’s new GM turned his attention to the lowly Browns and lo and behold they’re one game up on the Ravens. This week he has a chance to leave Baltimore fans scratching their heads and thinking about the big kahuna that got away. Browns are winners of the money for three straight weeks. BROWNS.

Dolphins +4 at Bucs: The Dolphins committed five turnovers and nearly pulled off the upset and the cover. Cadillac Williams won’t be finely tuned after sitting in the garage versus the Jets. Brian Griese may be the next heap headed for the repair shop. Michael Clayton is another banged up Buc. DOLPHINS.

Pats +3 at Broncos: The Patriots are trying to plug up too many holes. Brady is still the best QB in football. But it’s a team game and the Pats have too many team players in the whirlpool. BRONCOS

Jets + 3 at Bills: How did the Jets beat Tampa Bay? Did Vinny Testaverde ride his white horse onto the field ? Did he wave a magic wand? Kelly Holcomb may have commuted the J.P Losman death sentence for at least another week. BILLS.

Chargers -2 at Raiders: The Raiders were improving each week prior to bye. They nearly upset the Eagles at Philadelphia (lost by 3) and then defeated Dallas at home, 19-13. Oakland is well-rested and waiting for the Monday night boys in powder blue. RAIDERS.

Texans +9½ at Seahawks: Mike Holmgren can only be outdone by Mike Martz. Sunday’s debacle was a classic "last one to score wins" bumbling classic. I can’t lay more than a TD on this unreliably wacky Seattle team. TEXANS.

Rams +13 at Colts: Can anyone stop the Colts? Certainly not the Rams! But St. Louis can score points. This looks like a "take" all the way. Just don’t count on winning it straight up! RAMS.

LAST WEEK: 6-6-1

SEASON: 39-32-2