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Published: Oct 23, 2008
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Week 8 in the NFL 2008: Previews and Picks
by S. Keough


San Diego and New Orleans each try to right their seasons as they travel to London this week while two conference powerhouses meet in Pittsburgh and Tennessee tries to protect it's unbeaten record at home on Monday night against the Colts.

Raiders at Ravens(-7):  Both these teams were able to end three-game losing skids last weekend and now one of them will be hoping to join their respective division race with a win Sunday.  The Ravens defense is the best in the league right now but it's offense is near the bottom, but both units should get help from a Raiders team that isn't good at either.  Oakland's defense has shown an ability to frustrate quarterbacks at times but they give up alot of yardage to teams that can run the ball, the one part of Baltimore's offense that works pretty well.  Willis McGahee finally had his best game against Miami which is definitely a positive sign for a team that is still in the hunt in a wide open AFC race.  Ravens by 9

Cardinals at Panthers(-4.5):  Arizona heads to Carolina off the bye week and trying to win it's third straight after toppling previously undefeated Buffalo and the inconsistent Cowboys.  Now they take the highest scoring offense in the league out east to meet up with a defense that has been good a toppling high scoring offenses.  The Panthers stifled the Saints attack last week, keeping Drew Brees and his fleet of receivers, including Reggie Bush, out of the endzone for the entire 60 minutes.  New Orleans only score came from a back-up running back named Mike Karney.  Anquan Boldin could return for Arizona but this team is just not the same on the road and their defense is porous on a good day.  Panthers by 6

Buccaneers at Cowboys(-2.5):  Starting quarterbacks Tony Romo and Brian Griese will both miss this game but that is much better news for the Bucs than it is for Dallas.  Brad Johnson struggled throughout last week's loss to the previously hapless St. Louis Rams and things are starting to look bleak for a team that started out 3-0 but now has as many losses as they did all last season.  Johnson was picked three times last week and will face an even tougher defense this time around.  While the Cowboys are slipping in the NFC East, Tampa Bay has a share of the lead in the South thanks to wins over Carolina and Seattle.  Jeff Garcia has taken over for an injured Griese and looks much better than he did when the season started.  Losing his starting job, then getting a second chance seems to have made Garcia forget about an offseason in which he was not offered the contract extension he was hoping for and his team courting Brett Favre to take his place.  If he stays focused on just winning week-to-week, another postseason appearance is coming.  Buccaneers by 6

Redskins(-7.5) at Lions:  After winning four in a row, Washington is coming off two disappointing performances.  A 19-17 loss to a previously winless Rams team and a 3-point win over mediocre at best Cleveland.  They must avoid another let down when they play one of the two remaining teams yet to get a victory his season this week when they travel to Detroit.  The Lions have looked slightly better the last two weeks.  That is to say they have been losing in closer games rather than blowouts like their first four losses.  Dan Orlovsky certainly improved over his first performance as the starting quarterback for the Lions, he did manage to drop back into his own endzone without going out of bounds, and in doing so he hooked up with Charles Johnson for a 96-yard touchdown.  The two need to keep up that kind of production and hope the Kevin Smith continues to improve as well if they are going to find positives to build on for next season.  Redskins by 10

Read the rest of Shane's picks at SuperFans.net




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