Oddsmaker Greatness of the Gridiron Challenge: NFL Week 8 Picks

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I am the Gridiron Great, and I have been handicapping the NFL for a number of years. I've learned the ins and outs of what it takes to beat the bookies at this game, and I know just how difficult it can be. Do you think you can beat me at my own game? Every week that you do, you'll be entered into a grand prize drawing at the end of the season for a $1,000 Oddsmaker Sportsbook account. Even if you don't beat me though, you can still collect a $100 account from Oddsmaker just by having the most picks correct amongst Cappers Info readers.

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There is no greater time to try to get into this competition than right now, as every week you beat me gives you another opportunity at that big cash prize at the end of the year. Let's get started right now with my Week 8 picks…

Denver Broncos (+1) vs. San Francisco 49ers – Jolly ol' England is going to get to see a real lousy one this year as well. How on earth do the worst teams in the NFL continually end up going overseas for these spectacles? Anyway, the Broncos are coming off of their worst performance of the season, but no one in the Rockies is pushing the panic button. With QB Troy Smith getting the nod for San Fran instead of backup QB David Carr, not only is there a very disgruntled man sitting on the sidelines, but it is clear that HC Mike Singletary is making this move in hopes of saving his job. It won't work. Going with the Broncos +1 as short underdogs.

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Dallas Cowboys (-6.5) – I'm really tired of getting burned by the Cowboys every single week, but I'm backing Dallas -6.5 once again. The Cowboys might have just gotten the shot in the arm that they needed when QB Tony Romo went down on Monday Night Football. One of two things is going to happen. Either the team is really going to rally around QB Jon Kitna and start to come together, or all hell will break loose and the season will be over. I already know which direction Jacksonville is heading in… All I need to do is look at the box score from last week's 42-20 embarrassment at the Kansas City Chiefs to tell that…

Washington Redskins (+2.5) @ Detroit Lions – Yeah, yeah, I hear ya. The Redskins have already lost at the St. Louis Rams this year, the Lions are coming off of a bye week, they're getting their starting quarterback back in the lineup for the first time since the opening weekend of the season, and they have the best ATS record in the game. Easy pick for the hosts, right? However, have you ever heard of such a thing as a play being so sharp that it's square? It's too easy to go with Detroit. The oddsmakers had no choice but to react to all of these recent covers for the men from Motown. Could the Lions win this game? Sure. Are they truthfully on a level playing field with the Redskins, as is implied by this line? Heck no. My choice is easy. Washington +2.5

Green Bay Packers @ New York Jets (-5.5) – I sort of feel like I'm being tricked into taking the Jets -5.5 on Sunday afternoon, but there are just too many things going for New York and too many going against Green Bay for me to ignore. The Packers just played their most emotional game of the season last week against the Minnesota Vikings, and they are going to need a significantly bigger effort to get past the Jets in New Meadowlands Stadium. The Jets are coming off of their bye week and have seemingly found an offense for the first time in the HC Rex Ryan era. I really don't feel like I have that much of a choice here.

Carolina Panthers @ St. Louis Rams (-3) – Does anyone have a rusty fork available for me to poke my eyes out with? Geez, does this game smell about as appealing as a baby's diaper after four hours… The Panthers might have a win now, but just because QB Matt Moore threw for 300+ yards last week doesn't make him a hero. The Rams are still playing good ball at home this year, and they'll come up with yet another victory. Things would have felt a lot different for the hosts if they were 4-2, and that's exactly what would've happened had they stopped the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the goal line last week in the fourth quarter. I'm sticking with St. Louis -3.

Miami Dolphins @ Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5) – It seems like this would be a tremendously easy game to pick, especially if you believe that the Pittsburgh Steelers are really one of the best teams in the NFL. The Fins just played a great game against Pittsburgh and nearly pulled off the outright victory. They're also a perfect 3-0 SU and ATS on the road this year, going into Cincinnati, where the Bengals are one of the most disappointing teams in the league. However, the Bengals have already beaten the Baltimore Ravens this year at home, and they might be able to add Miami's scalp to that list this weekend. So I fooled you! You thought I was going with Miami… Wrongo! Cincinnati -1.5

Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs (-7.5) – Just for the record, I don't think that there has been a single game this year in which I've picked the Bills… and I'm not so sure if that's going to change any time in the near future. I said at the outset of the year that this was the worst team that the NFL has seen in years, including that winless Detroit Lions team from 2008, and I'm sticking by that. Buffalo is a joke, and that joke was so funny last week that the Baltimore Ravens were nearly laughing too hard and forgot about destroying the punch line. The Chiefs aren't going to screw around like Baltimore did. Kansas City -7.5 for me, without a doubt.

Tennessee Titans @ San Diego Chargers (-3.5) – Here's another game that I could really live without. The Bolts are in just about the same type of hot water that the Dallas Cowboys are in right now, but at least they have something positive to build on after nearly coming all the way back to beat the New England Patriots last weekend. Tennessee is the most overrated bunch in the league, and at some point, it will come back to earth. That might start this weekend even though it doesn't seem like San Diego can beat anyone right now. I'm backing the Bolts -3.5.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Arizona Cardinals (-3) – The vintage Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde team in the NFL is Arizona. The Cards simply can't play a game on the road to save their lives, but put them back at home, and all bets are off. Tampa Bay just put together an emotional road win to stay alive in the playoff race, but let's be real here for a second. The New Orleans Saints just lost to these Redbirds by ten a few weeks back. That same team in black and gold won in Tampa Bay by a whole boatload of points the very next week. No way, Tampa Bay. The Bucs stop here. Arizona -3

Seattle Seahawks @ Oakland Raiders (-1.5) – Speaking of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde teams… Does anyone else think that the Seahawks are genuinely going to be able to win road games all season long? Look, QB Jason Campbell isn't going to complete just 40 some odd percent of his passes like QB Jay Cutler did two weeks ago in the Windy City. The Raiders are coming off of a fantastic game against the Denver Broncos in which they set a franchise record for points scored. In the Black Hole, I'll go with the hosts and take Oakland -1.5.

Minnesota Vikings @ New England Patriots (-6) – I don't care if you put Brett Favre, Joe Montana, YA Tittle, or Gus Frerotte after banging his head up against the wall under center this weekend… WR Randy Moss isn't going to do a thing against the Pats, as you know that the evil mastermind, HC Bill Belichick has been scheming for this game and this particular matchup since the day that the Pats sent good ol' Randy out of town. It's been awhile since I've heard a "Love Boat" reference to Minnesota, but the Vikes definitely have a ship that is sinking right now. New England -6

Pittsburgh Steelers @ New Orleans Saints (+1)Remember to make your tiebreaker picks in this game!!! This is one of the toughest games that I've had to make a call on in recent years, and I'm still not totally sure that I wouldn't want to flip flop my pick a number of times from now through the kickoff of this one. I tend to think that RB Reggie Bush coming back into the lineup will at least put enough fear in a potentially harmed Pittsburgh defense to give the Saints the upper hand. But the bottom line that I have right now is that the Steelers are going to lose eventually, while New Orleans as an underdog at home is just ridiculous. The Bayou will be rockin' on Saturday night, and I'm going with New Orleans +1.

Official Week 8 NFL Lines Courtesy of Oddsmaker Sportsbook
Denver Broncos vs. San Francisco 49ers (-1)
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Dallas Cowboys (-6.5)
Washington Redskins @ Detroit Lions (-2.5)
Green Bay Packers @ New York Jets (-5.5)
Carolina Panthers @ St. Louis Rams (-3)
Miami Dolphins @ Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5)
Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs (-7.5)
Tennessee Titans @ San Diego Chargers (-3.5)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Arizona Cardinals (-3)
Seattle Seahawks @ Oakland Raiders (-1.5)
Minnesota Vikings @ New England Patriots (-6)

Pittsburgh Steelers (-1) @ New Orleans Saints

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