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The Most Unpredicatable Year in NFL History Continues

The earth must be off its axis or something.  I assume those of you who have been keeping track of the Sunday early games are as dumbfounded as I am.  As we already told you when we posted our NFL picks here at LBS, there’s just no easy way to pick against the spread so far this year.  Come to think of it, picking straight up is no picnic at the moment either.

If you took the Browns +13 against the Saints and the Bills +13 against the Ravens, good for you.  At the half of both games it looks like you made better picks than I did.  But if you try to tell me you expected New Orleans to be trailing Cleveland, 20-3, at the half and Baltimore to be behind Buffalo, 24-20 — both at home — then I know you’re just lying through your teeth.

Yet somehow that’s what’s going on at the moment.  I just spoke to a wise 89-year-old football expert (who I refer to as my grandfather during the work week), and even he said he can’t remember a year where there was less of a clear-cut favorite in both the AFC and NFC.  Yes, he’s still all there.  Who are the powerhouses?  Who are the Super Bowl favorites?  Right now the answer to those questions looks like a simple “nobody.”  If these games continue the way they’re going, wish us luck putting together the power rankings on Tuesday.

Prime Time Preview: Ravens vs. Patriots

Our Week 6 LBS Game of the Week takes us to Gillette stadium for a match-up between the Baltimore Ravens and New England Patriots that will help clear some of the dust in the AFC and determine who the powerhouses are.  One player who won’t be in attendance is Randy Moss.  The Patriots face a true test coming off the bye week and will get a chance to see how their new, Moss-less offense stacks up against one of the best defenses in the AFC.

Why Should I Watch?

Last year in the opening round of the NFL playoffs, the Ravens went into Foxboro and embarrassed the Patriots on their own turf.  Ray Rice exploded from the opening snap and Baltimore’s front seven harassed Tom Brady for 60 minutes.  New England is looking for revenge but Baltimore won’t be intimidated.  They’ve won much bigger games at Gillette than this one.

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Freddie Mitchell Working Out for Ravens?

You’ve probably come to expect me to be down with all athletes that are former Bruins. Au contraire. When a guy’s got a mouth as big as Jay Bruce’s hat, and not the skills to back it up, it becomes hard to root for him. It is in that light that I must laugh along with pretty much the rest of sports world in hearing that the Ravens actually worked Fred Ex out. MDS at Pro Football Talk says he first heard about his from a reader tip saying Freddie talked about it on his Myspace page and that a league source confirmed the story. MDS is quite the reliable fellow so I have pretty good reason to believe this is true, not to mention new coach John Harbaugh used to be with the Eagles, Freddie’s former team.

There is a dilemma however: do you laugh at Fred Ex just for being himself, or at the Ravens for actually working the guy out? It’s comical that Freddie’s still trying to get a job in the NFL. He’s a former 1st round pick, who not unlike many other highly drafted wide receivers, busted out of the NFL after a few unsuccessful seasons. He’s only known for his big mouth, having given himself the Fred Ex nickname, and notably thanking his hands “for being so great” when he made the incredible catch on 4th down. The Ravens though, my goodness. They got Mark Clayton who’s a former 1st round pick, Derrick Mason who needs to avoid the hirshey squirts, and now they’re even working out Fred Ex? That’s pretty low on the barrel. I’m sure he won’t sniff a roster spot, but still funny he’s trying to hang on.

Derrick Mason Probable With.. Diarrhea

Yeah man, no joke. I was thumbing through Rotoworld to find out the latest injury news from the NFL, only to come across this one for Derrick Mason. Let me just say that I’ve seen some strange ailments on the injury reports, and I’ve heard of Andy Roddick losing a match because he got sick eating fast food, but I don’t know if I’ve seen anything quite this personal:

Wide receiver Derrick Mason sat out with an unusual ailment, according to [Head Coach Brian] Billick.

“He’s got – as Tess [trainer Bill Tessendorf] says – gastroenteritis,” Billick said. “In my neighborhood, that’s [diarrhea]. So you put whatever label you want to.”

Apparently Taco Bell strikes in Baltimore as badly as it does in LA. I feel for you, Derrick Mason, I feel for you. And next time this happens, just have Coach Billick say you have the stomach flu, OK?