We don't bet on football, but this Monday we feel like like desperate weekend gamblers trying to get it all back on Monday night -- and with two games, to boot!
After the Cold, Hard Football Facts let us down to the tune of four losses against no wins Sunday, we're 1-4 for Week 1 and needing a 2-for-2 effort tonight.
On with the picks:
BALTIMORE AT CINCINNATI
Based on last year's numbers, this shapes up as a mismatch. The Bengals' 25th ranked offensive line should be running for its life against the Ravens' No. 1 unit of Hog goodness. And even if Carson Palmer has time to throw, the Bengals' No. 5 passing YPA is nullified by the Ravens' No. 1 rank in defensive passer rating.
Meanwhile, the Ravens' excellent O-line (with Johnathan Ogden a question) goes against Cincy's 23rd ranked defensive hogs and their No. 8 passing YPA goes against Cincy's No. 22 defensive passer rating.
However, the teams split last year, with each game decided by six points, so it's not going to be a mismatch. But the Bengals will have to play the Ravens' game, and that doesn't suit them.
Final score: Baltimore 16, Cincinnati 13
ARIZONA AT SAN FRANCISCO
The over-under on this game confuses the Cold, Hard Football Facts. Both teams have poor defensive fronts and terrible pass defenses, neither has figured out how to keep teams out of the end zone (Niners 32nd in Bendability, Cardinals 27th).
In addition, the teams combined for 46 and 61 points in their two games from 2006 and were both in the bottom four leaguewide in scoring defense. As a bonus, both teams are supposed to be offensive powerhouses on the rise.
Time to prove it. Points will flow. But who wins? The Cardinals' numbers were better in 2006, except in the win column, but the Niners have improved more and have the edge in continuity. Add the home field edge, and the score emerges ...
Final score: San Francisco 30, Arizona 24