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In Wilbon's World

Week 10: Singing the blues

Finally, this was an unpredictable and intriguing week in the NFL. Teams that can't win did win. Bad teams challenged good teams. Teams heavily favored to win at home lost. The NFC East, overrated to begin with, got smacked around for another week. The Giants did very well simply to not play. In short, the season began to actually take shape. There were developments and surprises that gave the week a bit of character, something other than the best teams slapping around the worst. Finally.

Best games

Colts over Patriots: The most arrogant fourth-down call I've seen in 44 years of watching football.

Bengals over Steelers: We're accustomed to seeing the Pittsburgh defense suffocate opponents, not the other way around. Yet, the Bengals held Pittsburgh to four field goals in what Bengals Coach Marvin Lewis called "the most grinding game" he'd ever been a part of. The Bengals lost Cedric Benson and the Steelers lost Troy Polamalu to injuries, and the Steelers lost a 10-game winning streak at home.

Not only that, but the Bengals swept the Steelers for the first time since 1998. Hats off to the Bengals, although it's going to be interesting to see how Cincinnati plays as the favorite.

Dolphins over Bucs: I know, I's a game that meant nothing. Well, not to the Dolphins, who are still in it for a wild-card spot, but only after they survived Tampa going ahead in the final 90 seconds and making a field goal in the final 15 seconds to win it. For a pretty good team and a terrible team it had some thrilling moments on both sides. Miami is one of the five most exciting teams to watch in the NFL.

Jaguars over the Jets: Is it possible that Jacksonville is a playoff team? Maurice Jones-Drew took a knee at the 1 to burn the clock and play keep away from the Jets, who have now lost four of their last five games. The Jets looked fairly puny after a bye week and continued to make goofy mistakes that sabotaged their effort. Jones-Drew, with 124 yards rushing, just hammered the Jets' D. The bloom should be off the Ryan Rose in New York.

As for my picks ... what picks? After having the worst week of picking games last week since I was in college, I had a worse week this week. Looking at the fan vote, most of the rest of you were dreadful as well.

Three picks I got right

Titans over Bills: It's a long way from the 10 straight the Tennessee players are hoping for after the 0-6 start, but Vince Young won his third straight and we know who the QB is in Tennessee for the rest of the season and foreseeable future.

Saints over Rams: Didn't think I'd be beating my chest about this result. But Stephen Jackson and the Rams put up a fight and could have (should have?) won the game if they'd managed the end of the game better.

49ers over Bears: This was the case of one man's hubris getting the better of him -- and not just in this loss but in his career. I'm talking about Jay Cutler, of course. He threw five picks. And it's not like he was pressured into the blunders; he wasn't sacked once in the game. A man who has the gall to say his arm is stronger than John Elway's, which Cutler said last year, is too arrogant to be a good QB and is quite predictable...even for a Bears fan.

Pardon these picks

Thankfully, we're just talking about three misses because I missed at least twice that many.

Steelers over Bengals: Was Cutler cocky about this pick because I thought the Steelers had gotten themselves back into championship form? It never dawned on me that the Bengals could win this game or that they might be the better team. The Bengals don't need Carson Palmer to throw for 300 yards and four TDs to win anymore, but they do need Benson. If Larry Johnson comes in to replace an injured Benson, Bengals will go due south ASAP. Watch.

Broncos over Redskins: All the Redskins fans who want some sloppy slurpage of the local team, don't wait to see it here. The Redskins did a nice job. But the other team's backup QB, Chris Simms, hadn't played since 2006. You get a win for doing what you're supposed to do, but not a lot of praise.

Raiders over Chiefs: How can you know anything that's going to happen between teams this unbelievably awful? I should just skip all games involving these two for the rest of the season.


Michael Wilbon

 |  November 15, 2009; 8:38 PM ET  |  Category:  NFL , Post Pro Picks Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: The Wilbon Index: Top college teams | Next: Belichick's arrogance


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Where are the week-11 Picks

Posted by: desatonyp | November 21, 2009 6:10 PM
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Everybody has injuries. The Redskins won. You picked against them. Don't worry, most people did. No qualifiers needed.....


Posted by: punchdaclock | November 17, 2009 2:17 PM
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^ oops never mind. I forgot about Larry.

Posted by: RichinVA | November 16, 2009 9:34 AM
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"...and the Steelers lost Troy Polamalu to injuries,"

And with that, the Madden Curse completes another year.

Posted by: RichinVA | November 16, 2009 9:27 AM
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