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Saturday, February 11, 2006

AFL: week 3 picks


FRIDAY
Tampa Bay 48, Georgia 47:
Storm went 8-0 at home last season so Georgia is attempting to do what Colorado did to it last week. Georgia is the better team but, for this week, you have to give Tampa Bay the nod because of the home crowd.

SATURDAY
Dallas 65, Columbus 44: Columbus defense has been solid but Destroyers can't score with Dallas, even at home. Clint Dolezel, Will Pettis and company have put Desperados' offense in a class formally occupied by only Colorado.

Philadelphia 51, Orlando 37: Tough to pick against Predators at The Jungle but Soul looks like one of the league's most-improved teams. Tony Graziani is still listed as questionable but Matt Sauk was very effective in his place last week. Orlando was actually outplayed by Kansas City last week and solid Philadelphia pass rush should be able to harass Joe Hamilton into mistakes.

Utah 58, New York 51: Danny White's crew doesn't resemble an expansion team, at least on offense. Blaze is fun to watch. Aaron Garcia and company looked better last week against a Chicago team that has some holes to plug on the defensive side of the ball. Raucous Delta Center crowd should be enough to put Utah over the top.

SUNDAY
Kansas City 46, Austin 44:
Call me a homer but Brigade has played better than 0-2 and should have won last week in Orlando. K.C. coach Kevin Porter has seemingly figured out that Steve Smith is his go-to receiver. Austin's defense has been league's best over the first two weeks but they haven't faced a quarterback as effective as Andy Kelly and haven't faced a revved-up home crowd like they'll face at Kemper Arena Sunday. Wranglers' primary possession receiver, Darren Chiaverini, injured his shoulder near the end of Austin's win over Arizona last week. He isn't listed on the injury report for this week and John Fitzgerald better hope his security blanket is good to go against a Brigade defense that is soft on the short routes.

Los Angeles 57, Grand Rapids 48: Avengers have problems on offense but Rampage just isn't very good. Sparky McEwen is going to start rolling heads any day now.

Colorado 70, Las Vegas 45: This will be the week that Rashad Floyd and the rest of the Crush defense starts to show that it can actually help Colorado's unstoppable offense win some games. Should be entertaining to watch Alonzo Spellman huff and puff his way through this one.

Nashville 55, Chicago 51: Nashville has been the best all-around team in the league so far this season. Defense has been outstanding and Matt D'Orazio can be harassed into errors by Kats' Frank Carter-led pass rush. Chicago defense has been poor this season and the Rush simply do not have the horses to cover T.T Tolliver, Cory Fleming, Jermaine Lewis, etc.

Arizona 41, San Jose 38: Sherdrick Bonner is supposed to be back in the saddle for the Rattlers. Good thing, too. Arizona couldn't move the ball a lick with the backups last week in Austin. Injuries have led to San Jose's status as the league's most disappointing squad. James Roe and Barry Wagner are still listed as out for this week. Arizona may be the league's second-worst team after Grand Rapids but Sabrecats are just missing too many pieces to win on the road.


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