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Vick, Falcons may suffer Buc hango

Dec 10, 2002 6:42 AM

   The Atlanta Falcons looked like a potential super dawg Sunday when they flew into Tampa Bay with Superman. After all, Michael Vick was on an eight-game roll, and hadn't lost since the first week of October.

   One would think he should be able to leap tall buildings with a single bound. But Superman ran into some kryptonite from planet Tampa Buc D!

   In fact, nearly all the dogs had the energy sucked out of them just like Supervick. Dawgs had their way with the faves for 10 of the first 12 weeks, but not last Sunday. The favorites enjoyed their best week yet, beating down the dogs 10-6 and coming out on top for only the third week this season.

   Lets make the selections below like kryptonite to the bookies. Suck the life and the money out of all of ”˜em!

   Raiders (-1) over DOLPHINS: Anything Miami can do, and they've done a lot over the last four weeks (three wins in a row heading into Monday night's game with da Bears), Raiders have done better. Gannon on fire as Raiders have burned up five straight opponents. Doesn't seem to matter who the competition is or whether it's home or on the road. Difficult to bet the other side for me.

   Seahawks (+9½) over FALCONS: Mike Holmgren still having nightmares about the talent he left behind in Green Bay. Not to mention a coaching staff with names like Mooch, Reid and Lewis. Falcons come home after three game road trip. Michael Vick can flick his bic and talk the talk all he wants. But he might have learned a lesson after spouting off that he was going to have the best game ever in Tampa Bay. Just 15 total yards rushing! Superman dying to get his cape back on but will he cover the entire number?

   BILLS (-2½) over Chargers: Bolts have lost a little zip in their lightning bolt zap. Once stingy D is starting to give up yardage too easy. Chargers coming off two emotional games with Broncos and Raiders. Bills nasty in cold weather at home as Dolphins found out two weeks ago.

   Jets (-5) over BEARS: Jets have new life with Chad Pennington. Won six of their last eight with a big one over Denver the latest. Hung tough against Oakland and won the money, which they've done in their last three road games.

   BENGALS (+3½) over Jags: Could there possibly be a hungrier home dog in the NFL? Not a chance. Realistically, since there's only one home game left with Saints after this one, this is their last chance for another win at home (maybe this season).

   BROWNS (+2½) over Colts: The Colts have won four of their last five. But they lacked life on the road last week and there's more of the same hostility in Cleveland this week. Browns haven't won at home since Week 7. Another hungry home team needs win desperately. William Green starting to give the offense new life.

   BUCS (-8) over Lions: I'm sorry Marty, but if you can't find a way to beat Arizona after having a big lead, you might have won your last game of the year six weeks ago against Dallas.

   TEXANS (+3) over Ravens: Houston set an NFL record by beating Steelers while racking up 47 total yards of offense. Despite the fact that Pittsburgh had several drops, that's a very solid defensive effort. More of the same at home here and enough to win the money.

   Vikings (+6) over SAINTS: Vikes only have three wins. But this is a much better team since they upset Green Bay five weeks ago. Darn near did the same Sunday night and managed to cover the playoff-bound Pack again.

   Skins (+8) over EAGLES: Skins at a point where they're more relaxed on the road than at home. Philly 4-0 since Colts upset. Assumption here is that Spurrier will go back to Ramsey. A.J. Feeley due to touch down on planet earth any day now.

   Panthers (+8½) over STEELERS: Panthers on a two-game streak. Rodney Peete not making any huge mistakes. The defense misses Julius Peppers, but maybe not as much as you'd think. Maybe it's like the Eagles losing McNabb.  Panthers may be out to prove they're not a one man defensive show. Pittsburgh may be vulnerable with Maddox looking shaky and Kordell due for stinker if Cowher chooses to change QBs.

   Chiefs (+3½) over BRONCOS: Where's the Mile High magic gone? Broncos have lost three in a row at home. Worse yet, they've lost four of their last five games. Chiefs have been dangerous for some time because they're nearly unstoppable with Priest Holmes and Trent Green. But even scarier now that the defense has reared it's stingy head.

   49ERS (-1) over Packers: Both teams have clinched. Playing for home field advantage. Looking for more of an all-out effort from home team here. Neither club has been a great cover team lately.

   GIANTS (-4) over Cowboys: G-men came up with big effort to take heat off of Fassel. The Giants rarely lose in December. NY trying to avoid meltdown that occurred two weeks ago versus Titans. Keep waiting for Hutchinson to lay an egg but he's been solid the last three weeks.

   RAMS (-5) over Cards: One win over Lions in the last eight weeks is not impressing me. Rams need Faulk healthy and the scarecrow back behind center.

   TITANS (-2) over Pats: Titans have quietly won six of last seven. Defense has been laying big hits on teams, even without Kearse. When he comes back, the Titans get even better. Pats playing much better since losing four straight earlier this season. But they're not the same team you remember from last year's Super Bowl!

   Last week: 8-7

   Season: 106-92-9