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Sunday, Oct. 17 (Note: All times listed are Eastern Standard Time)
Cleveland at Jacksonville (-17.5), 1:00 p.m.
The young field marshall of the forest city,
Is hunted by cats of prominent pedigree.
Their attack relentless,
The blood faced grins fortell victory.
The Author's Thoughts: The Browns seem to get better each week. But they suffer a reversal against the best team in the NFL. At home, Jacksonville is very tough. The only thing that could keep this close is the offensive stupor the Jaguars have been in over the past couple of weeks. They have been playing a very bland brand of O'. Of course, RB Fred Taylor being out does not help. But this week, the Jags break out the whooping sticks and cover the big spread by a score of 35-10.
Indianapolis (-2.5) at New York Jets, 1:00 p.m.
Old Titan conquers the horse in the torn arena,
The great Maestro cannot be denied.
Luke will be unstoppable,
The fliers finally have fortune on their side.
The Author's Thoughts: The Jets were supposed to win the AFC, say the experts. But Nostradamus' did not think they would beat Miami or even Buffalo in the standings. Still, he never thought they would be this bad. The Colts are far improved and have a fearsome passing attack. But they are beatable and the Jets one strength is pass defense. Watch Ray Lucas put a spark in the moribund Jets' offense. The Jets pull off the home dog upset.
Miami atNew England (-2), 1:00 p.m.
The Prophecy: Believe it or not, the Patriots have won 5 of the last 6 of these match-ups. But the Dolphins offense passed a major gut check in beating Indianapolis last week. The team is rallying around Dan Marino and he is responding. Meanwhile the Pats gave one away on the road against the Chiefs via a botched field goal. As foretold by Nostradamus, Miami is a playoff team while New England is a 9-7 squad at best. Miami wins by a TD.
Minnesota (-3.5) at Detroit, 1:00 pm
The Prophecy: The Vikings are not dead yet. It's a matter of time until they put some deep hurting on some victim. The Lions have "Victim" written all over them. Nostradamus curses Detroit. They always do the opposite of what he predicts. Not this time. The loss of Barry Sanders will start to show. The Vikes swept Detroit by an average of 22 points last season. Pick the Vikings.
Oakland at Buffalo (-3.5), 1:00 p.m.
The Prophecy: Oakland plays everybody tough but generally ends up short. As for the Bills, Doug Flutie seems to have command of every game. Don't expect Buffalo to run on the tough Raiders defense; but they can be beat from the air. This game will be hard-fought, with playoff-hunting Buffalo getting the edge by 7.
Philadelphia at Chicago (-7), 1:00 p.m.
The Prophecy: This game will have all the excitement of a Greco-Roman wrestling match. Though their defense is borderline excellent, the Eagles have absolutely nothing going for them on offense. The Bears, without Shane Matthews, are equally wretched. However, consider the Eagles have not won a road game since beating the Kotite Jets way back in December 1996. Also, expect a conservative, mistake-free start from Cade McNown as the more talented Bears beat the Eagles 14-6.
Pittsburgh (-5) at Cincinnati, 1:00 p.m.
The Prophecy: Bruce Coslet may be the first coach this year to get his walking papers. But Nostradamus liked the poise of Akili Smith. With 2 TD passes (also had a rushing TD the week before) and over 200 yards passing against the Browns, he looks like the best of the 3 high QB picks in the draft. The Steelers defense is strong, but what are they going to do about Kordell Stewart??!? Nostradamus gives you his "UPSETUS SUPREMUS," a big Bengal win at home over the hated Steelers.
St. Louis at Atlanta (NO LINE), 1:00 p.m.
The unclean bird of prey wallows on the ground,
Stomped by Aries like wounded prey.
The Bereaved will tremble at the sight of A,-Zahir, Isaac and Curtis,
Devastated Ospreys are chased away.
The Author's Thoughts: Every year, the NFC presents a surprise team. It was the Bucs in '97, the Falcons in '98, and now the Rams. Atlanta cannot afford to lose another game if they want to get back in the playoffs. But with all the injuries to the offense, how can they keep up with the scoring machine that is the St. Louis rams. You wouldn't expect a Dan Reeves-coached team to get blown out twice, (they lost 35-7 to the Rams in week 3) but the Rams look awesome. St. Louis gets the rout.
Tennessee (-2.5) at New Orleans, 1:00 pm
The Prophecy: Can you believe this spread. Vegas is giving this one away!!! The Titans will destroy the Saints, 31-3. New Orleans is one of the 5 or 6 worse teams in the NFL; Tennessee, one of the 3 best. Even if Ricky Williams does play (which is doubtful), he is too banged up to factor much. Saints QB Billy Joe Hobert and TE Cam Cleeland are also out. Lock City for the Titans!!!
Seattle (-1.5) at San Diego, 4:05pm
The Prophecy: This is a battle for who will be the new heir apparent of the AFC West. Seattle has won the last 5 over San Diego and they have the better offense to beat the Bolts.
Carolina at San Francisco (-5), 4:15 p.m.
The Author's Thoughts: The Panthers play everyone tight, but always find a way to lose. Meanwhile, the 49ers will again be without Steve Young; maybe for good. The 49ers are still next-to-impossible to beat at home. They beat the Panthers by 10.
Green Bay (-3.5) at Denver, 4:15 p.m.
The Prophecy: The last time these two played, it was one for the ages in Super Bowl XXXII. That was Nostradamus' first recorded prophecy. Once again last week, Green Bay's Brett Favre pulled another one out in the closing minutes. The Packers defense is only average, however. The Broncos still have a major QB controversy and there will be no trash talk from TE Shannon Sharpe, who broke his clavicle (that's a collarbone). For all good intent, you can put a shroud on the Broncos. Green Bay returns the favor and beats Denver in convincing fashion.
Washington (-3) at Arizona, 8:20 p.m.
The Prophecy: The Redskins have not only improved over last year, they have actually been a team worth watching. RB Steve Davis and QB Brad Johnson has been especially impressive. But against the Cardinals, they are facing a defense that is starting to get players back from the injured list and got on track in suffocating the giants offense. The X-Factor: Jake the Snake is off the schneid and can literally dissect the very porous Washington D'. Expect lots of scoring, but Arizona easily beats Washington.
Monday, Oct. 18
Dallas (-3)at New York Giants, 9:00 p.m.
The Prophecy: Forget the Eagles game. Dallas is still a very dangerous team. They can score on offense and their D is strong. New York's offense may actually be worse than the Eagles right now. Believe it or not, last week's loss to Philly was Chan Gailey's first defeat against an NFC opponent. They wiped out the Giants last year. Once again, no contest, Dallas on top by 3 TDs.