Throwing Darts: Can the desperate Packers spring an upset?

The public's out there throwing darts at a board, sport. I don't throw darts at a board.

Wait a minute, yes I do.

Packers +3.5 at Texans: How good is Houston, really? Arian Foster is currently a 4.0 YPC back, and the much-ballyhooed offensive line (still ranked No. 1 on some subjective lists) doesn't look good on the spreadsheet; Pro Football Focus has the Texans 18th in run blocking this year and 15th in pass blocking. Houston comes into this game on short rest and without Brian Cushing, and the Packers are the more desperate team (an angle Bill Parcells would often bring up).

Dolphins -3.5 vs. Rams: While I have much respect for the Rams defense, I'm having trouble seeing how St. Louis scores more than 10 points on the road (unless something fluky happens on defense or special teams). Sam Bradford has once again been sold out by his receivers and offensive line. Meanwhile, Ryan Tannehill is the best rookie quarterback that you're hearing almost nothing about. His familiarity with the offense, dating back to the Texas A&M days, clearly shows on the tape. Miami rolls.

Broncos +1 at Chargers: You'll have to give a point or so with the Broncos in some other spots, but we use the Yahoo! Pro Football Pick-Em lines in this column, thus you see the plus-one here. It's not really a big deal crossing the equator. Peyton Manning looks more in sync with his offense with each passing week, and the Broncos pass rush might have a field day against the spotty Chargers offensive line (especially with LT Jared Gaither expected out). The Norv Turner offense still likes to throw those pretty intermediate and deep routes, but will the protection hold enough for those plays to develop?

Seahawks +3.5 vs. Patriots: As sharp as the Patriots have been on offense the last few weeks, it's a different challenge going on the road and taking on the Seahawks nasty defense and formidable home-field edge. Seattle can crash the pocket with or without gimmicks, and the secondary is the deepest (and the biggest) in the league. So long as Russell Wilson plays a clean game - and that's obviously no guarantee - I trust Seattle to keep things close or pull off the upset.

This Week: 1-0
Last Week: 1-4
Season: 18-8
2011: 41-39
2010: 49-34

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