Today's games

Pro Football

December 17, 2005|By KEN MURRAY


TIME, TV -- 1:30 p.m., chs. 45, 5

LINE -- Patriots by 4 1/2

SKINNY -- The last time Jon Gruden visited Foxborough, the Raiders lost on the tuck rule in the playoffs and the Patriots went to the Super Bowl. He hopes history isn't repeated. His Buccaneers are 4-2 against winning teams, while the Patriots are only 2-5. And Patriots QB Tom Brady has a limp. But the key matchup is Bucs QB Chris Simms against Patriots coach Bill Belichick.

PICK -- Patriots

CHIEFS (8-5) @ GIANTS (9-4)

TIME, TV -- 5 p.m., chs. 13, 9

LINE -- Giants by 3

SKINNY -- This is the wrong time for the injury-depleted Giants to meet a physical Chiefs team. Without MLB Antonio Pierce, it will be hard for the Giants to handle Chiefs RB Larry Johnson. If the Giants' starting offensive tackles can't play, it will be hard for QB Eli Manning to stay upright against Kansas City's blitzes. At this point, the Chiefs are the more desperate team.

PICK -- Chiefs

BRONCOS (10-3) @ BILLS (4-9)

TIME, TV -- 8:30 p.m., ESPN

LINE -- Broncos by 8 1/2

SKINNY -- After a sluggish performance against the Ravens, the Broncos are looking to protect their No. 2 seed in the AFC and get back in sync. A night game in Buffalo in mid-December might not be the best way to crank up the offense. But the Bills again look to be in disarray.

PICK -- Broncos

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