2006 Season NFL Football Past Picks
October 29, 2006
This pick was released to clients on July 30, 2012 at 8:54PM ET.
Tampa Bay at New York
Sunday 10/29 01:00 PM Eastern
3 units on New York -9 (-110) (risk 3 to return 5.73) RESULT: WIN
I don't often pick big favorites but I like the Giants a lot this Sunday at home against the Bucs. The G-Men are a top 5 team in my opinion right now. Their offense is great and their defense is good enough. Tampa Bay's offense is very weak. How will they keep up with the Giants on Sunday? I don't think they will. They have the 29th ranked offense in points per game (14.2) and yards per game (269). And their defense, so good in years past, is ranked 27th in yards allowed this season. The Bucs have played a tough schedule having faced Baltimore, Atlanta, Carolina, New Orleans, Cincinnati and Philly. They started out 0-4 but since Bruce Gradowski took over for Chris Simms, they have managed a couple of wins. This has the public looking their way a bit. But, they were able to put up just 14 points against Cincinnati and 9 offensive points vs. Philadelphia in those wins. They may get mid-to-high double figures here in this game but I see the Giants getting to 28+. The Giants have averaged 27 points per game and since week two, have scored 27 or higher in every game but one and 30+ in three of those games. The only game in which they did not score a lot was vs. Washington in week 5. But if you remember, they ran all over the Giants and just couldn't get the ball in the endzone. They got into the Washington redzone on each of their first six possessions! It was a flukey game in which they racked up 411 total yards on offense but scored only 19 points. Tiki Barber is nearly unstoppable and with Schockey, Toomer and Burress to throw to, Eli Manning has outperformed his more famous brother this year, already throwing for over 1,500 yards. Tampa rankes 30th in rush defense so Barber is licking his chops. The Giants defense is a bit nicked up but Tampa Bay has no running game (averaging 92 yards per game and only 2 running back touchdowns) and a rookie QB. Gradowski has managed the game well, especially for a rookie. But, he's not likely to put up big numbers. In his first start against New Orleans, he surprised with a 225 yard performance. But two weeks ago against the Bengals, he threw for only 184 yards and last week he managed just 104 yards and after sacks, netted 85. Tampa Bay won that game thanks to an awful game from Donovan McNabb (two interceptsion returned for touchdowns) but really Tampa should not have won. The bottom line is that in game in which Gradowski will likely be called upon to score a lot of points (lots of offense from NYG and very little TB running game), I don't think he can do so. Giants by double-digits here.