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NFL Supercontest, Week 11

Can the Packers march to the Superbowl begins this week with an ascent to the top of the division?

The Packers have a chance to take their rightful place atop the division this weekend if they can win in Detroit and the 49ers take care of business against the Bears.  The game against Green Bay basically represents the Lions' last chance to stay relevant, and I would expect Detroit's defensive line to be able to get pressure early in the game and keep Aaron Rodgers off the field to some extent.  

The pressure will then be on the Packers defense to stand up to the dangerous, yet inconsistent, Lions aerial attack.  With Clay Matthews and Charles Woodson on the shelf, this game is an opportunity for Dom Capers to prove that he's still the best in the business when it comes to formulating a game plan that emphasizes the strengths of his playmakers.

Packers (-3) over LIONS

For as scary as the Detroit away game seems every year, the Packers have generally dominated there during Aaron Rodgers' tenure.  The Lions will have to raise their game to compete here, and maybe they will for a while.  Eventually, Rodgers will wear down the Lions' secondary (provided the offensive line holds up).   

PATRIOTS (-9.5) over Colts

I'm not convinced yet that the Colts are ready to compete with top-tier teams on the road.  This is a lot of points, but I could see Brady really going off here against a Colts secondary that has a lot of holes.  This game should serve as Aqib Talib's debut for New England, and how he's able to hold up in coverage should tell us a lot about the Patriots' long-term chances in the AFC.

PANTHERS (+1) over Buccaneers

The Buccaneers have been on a roll, and the Panthers are one of the few teams truly out of playoff contention.  Still, divisional road games are never soft touches, and the Panthers don't strike me as a team that will pack it in as the season draws to a close.  Also, the Panthers have been one of the league's unluckiest teams in terms of their won-loss record in close games, and this bad luck should turn around at some point this season.

Bengals (-3.5) over CHIEFS

The Chiefs are a mess, though they did provide some elite-level entertainment last week with their ill-fated all-hands-on-deck touchdown celebration.  The Bengals should have a bit of a letdown after putting wood to the world champs, but Cincinnati is well-rounded enough to weather whatever fight Kansas City can muster.  In other news, if you have any doubts about Bill Belichick being the league's best coach, check out what Matt Cassell has looked like since becoming the Chiefs' starter.  Yikes.

STEELERS (+3.5) over Ravens

The Steelers are at an obvious disadvantage in having to trot out Byron Leftwich as its starting quarterback.  Still, this is usually a game in which both teams play it pretty close to the vest until the fourth quarter.  The coaches will look to be conservative again - Mike Tomlin in an effort to hide his quarterback, and John Harbaugh in an effort to not give Pittsburgh any turnovers in a game that the Ravens should win.  With this conservative approach, it's easy to see a final margin of three or four points.

Last Week's Record:  2 - 3

Season Record: 27 - 23 

Games That I Didn't Pick:

REDSKINS (-3.5) vs. Eagles

FALCONS (-9.5) vs. Cardinals

COWBOYS (-7.5) vs. Browns

RAMS (-3.5) vs. Jets

TEXANS (-14.5) vs. Jaguars

Saints (-4.5) vs. RAIDERS

BRONCOS (-7.5) vs. Chargers

49ERS (-6) vs. Bears

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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