Week 8 of the season is behind us and now we look back at all the action that went down in the field, we review our NFL picks and what we should know going into week 9.
Rex Ryan Fan Appreciation Day
All professional sports franchises honor their esteemed current and former members in various ways. Big Papi of the Boston Red Sox was essentially on tour, in this his final season of a storied baseball career. The Red Sox brass practically built a Fenway shrine to him and his Bobbleheads are revered by Red Sox Nation fans from Cape Cod to Cape Verde.
But the Buffalo Bills, thrashed by the New England Patriots 41-25, at New Era Stadium this past Sunday apparently had a Rex Ryan Fan Appreciation afternoon as one of his likenesses was thrown on the field of play after a Patriots reception. The referee in charge of removing the object hesitatingly kicked it a few times to the sidelines. Seems like it would have been easier to pick up little Rexy and donate it to a deserving fan. Nevertheless, it appeared fitting that the object which brings so much pleasure was apropos of the biggest tool in Buffalo!
Breaking News – Patriots' Jamie Collins Traded
New England's Jamie Collins, the new breed of super-freak athlete that teams so desperately seek, has been abruptly traded to the Cleveland Browns for a third-round draft pick. The fourth-year linebacker portended to roam the edge for years to come based on his play the previous three seasons, saw his minutes began to quietly dwindle recently. Yet not so markedly that anyone saw this coming.
New England has once again shuttled a former big play defensive guy, ala Chandler Jones, for what is seemingly a pittance of their perceived value. Collins' decreasing role over the past few weeks was barely noticeable but there was talk that his play had slipped this season after suffering back and hip injuries. However, the exchange that the team got from Cleveland appears paltry, as did the second-rounder for Chandler Jones in the offseason when he was shipped to Arizona. But head coach Bill Belichick has quieted his critics before and will probably do so again.
Around the Gridiron
If you have included the Indianapolis Colts in your NFL picks then they have disappointed you almost as much as they have disappointed their fans. They are 3-5 both ATS and straight up, placing them third in the lackluster AFC South.
As regrettable as the Colts' season has been thus far, they have been pure gold compared to the Chicago Bears and San Francisco 49'ers. Sure, neither team had high hopes for the season but despite the head start the oddsmakers are giving them on a weekly basis, both teams are a money burning 1-6 ATS and straight up.
The top four teams this season in terms of rewarding their backers are the Patriots (7-1 ATS), Cowboys (6-1 ATS), Vikings (6-2 ATS) and Broncos (6-2 ATS). But beware all you sharpshooters, the NFL odds makers understand the public will be gushing over these frontrunners and will set the lines accordingly. Give a hard look at their opponents in the weeks to come.