N.Y. Jets (6-3) at Miami (6-2) Time: 1 p.m. today...

November 18, 2001|By Los Angeles Times

N.Y. Jets (6-3) at Miami (6-2)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: Dolphins by 5 1/2 .

Outlook: These teams have combined for an average of 51.8 points and 661.0 yards in their past four meetings. The Dolphins have yet to lose at home, and the Jets sport a 4-0 road record. Miami needs a better effort from Lamar Smith, who has averaged only 41.7 yards rushing in the past three games. Rookie receiver Santana Moss makes his debut for the Jets.

The pick: Miami. After seven consecutive losses to the Jets, the Dolphins are long overdue.

Seattle (4-4) at Buffalo (1-7)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: Seahawks by 3 1/2 .

Outlook: The Bills' defense will be wary of Seattle's Shaun Alexander, who is coming off a 266-yard, three-touchdown rushing performance against the Raiders. Alex Van Pelt will take over for the injured Rob Johnson at quarterback for Buffalo. Larry Centers needs 42 yards to pass Ronnie Harmon for most receiving yards by a running back in NFL history.

The pick: Seattle. The Bills are too battered at the quarterback, offensive line and linebacking spots to present much of a challenge.

Atlanta (4-4) at Green Bay (6-2)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: Packers by 10.

Outlook: The Packers look to slow the quick-start Falcons, who have outscored opponents 62-6 in the first quarter. However, with Chris Chandler nursing sore ribs, the Falcons may be in trouble. Atlanta is 2-12 since 1998 in games Chandler has missed or left because of injury. Brett Favre has passed for 272 touchdowns, two short of Joe Montana's sixth-place total.

The pick: Green Bay. Count on the Packers extending their nine-game Lambeau Field winning streak.

Philadelphia (5-3) at Dallas (2-6)

Time: 1 p.m. today, Ch. 5.

Line: Eagles by 7.

Outlook: Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb has finally found a dependable receiver in James Thrash, whose seven touchdown catches rank second in the NFC. Philadelphia has totaled 1,058 yards in its past three games against Dallas. In 23 games against the Eagles, Emmitt Smith has rushed for 2,304 yards.

The pick: Philadelphia. There is little reason to believe the Eagles aren't headed for their fourth consecutive victory against Dallas.

Tennessee (3-5) at Cincinnati (4-4)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: Bengals by 2.

Outlook: Corey Dillon is averaging 121.3 rushing yards in Cincinnati's four victories, compared to 49.5 in their four losses. After winning a league-high 13 games last season, the Titans are tied for last place in the AFC Central and are in danger of missing the playoffs.

The pick: Cincinnati. The Titans are underachieving and banged up, and the Bengals have won five of their past six games at Paul Brown Stadium.

San Francisco (6-2) at Carolina (1-8)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: 49ers by 7.

Outlook: This matchup has led to outstanding performances by both teams but don't expect the Panthers' bruised offense to be up to the challenge this time. 49ers running back Garrison Hearst has averaged 111 yards in four games against the Panthers.

The pick: San Francisco. Carolina's George Seifert is 4-1 against his former team, but he simply doesn't have the players to mount a challenge this year.

Indianapolis (4-4) at New Orleans (4-4)

Time: 1 p.m. today.

Line: Saints by 5 1/2 .

Outlook: In a homecoming of sorts, Indianapolis quarterback Peyton Manning pays a visit to the stadium where his father Archie toiled. Manning is nursing a broken jaw and running back Dominic Rhodes has a sore shoulder. The Saints' Aaron Brooks passed for 347 yards and two touchdowns last week against San Francisco.

The pick: New Orleans. The Colts' soft defense and battered offense portend disaster.

San Diego (5-4) at Oakland (6-2)

Time: 4:05 p.m. today.

Line: Raiders by 9.

Outlook: Where has the Flutie magic gone? The usually accurate Doug Flutie is sporting a woeful 38.3 completion percentage the past two games, both losses. After being trampled for 319 rushing yards by Seattle last Sunday, the Raiders' defense will be looking to make a statement.

The pick: Oakland. The Raiders have been unbeatable in their past nine home games.

Jacksonville (3-5) at Pittsburgh (6-2)

Time: 4:05 p.m. today.

Line: Steelers by 5 1/2 .

Outlook: Life lately has been frustrating for Jacksonville. Five of the Jaguars' past seven losses have been by four points or fewer. One reason the Jaguars are reeling is their 28.9 third-down conversion percentage, the worst in the NFL. Jerome Bettis drives the Steelers' offense but Kordell Stewart has a career-high 60.0 completion percentage.

The pick: Pittsburgh. The Steelers' dominant running game and stingy defense spell doom for the short-handed Jaguars.

Detroit (0-8) at Arizona (2-6)

Time: 4:15 p.m. today.

Line: Cardinals by 1 1/2 .

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