Originally posted on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 10/19/11

Well that sucked.

After going 21-11 during Weeks 3 and 4 to surge well over .500, I’ve hit the skids with my worst ever two week stretch during the 3+ years that I’ve been picking NFL games against the spread. I am 8-16-2 since the byes started in Week 5, with an especially horrific 3-9-1 last week. That’s just terrible. So I’m now 44-42-4 on the season, a 48.9% winning clip (since I conservatively count pushes as losses).

Let’s turn the page and move onto better times here in Week 7, and I’ll tell you why I’m wholly confident moving forward despite these last two terrible weeks.

Why do I remain confident? Because I know why I missed games the last couple of weeks: I didn’t trust my instincts.

Like a QB who overanalyzes the coverage of the defense so much that he’s too paralyzed with thoughts to actually make the play, I allowed myself to think too much rather than just going with my first impressions. I’ve had great success not trying to overthink these picks and just letting my impressions of teams and NFL instincts take over.

But because I really do try to guide the people to who read this as accurately as I can, sometimes I feel the pressure a bit and try too hard. I’ve found that, for me anyway, picking games is a lot like golf: the harder I try, the worse I do. It’s better to just let it flow and trust the “muscle memory”, so to speak.

So with a renewed vigor and refocused commitment to my proven personal picking strategy, plus a change in execution (maximum one sentence about each game) to reinforce my commitment to instinct, let’s delve into the Week 7 lines and make some picks!

A couple of quick things to keep in mind:

  • The following teams are on bye in Week 7: Bills, Bengals, Patriots, Giants, Eagles, 49ers
  • All times are ET.
  • All spread info as of Tuesday afternoon. If you want updated point spread info, or some expert advice as you make your weekly picks, below are a few helpful links.
    • DocSports: Week 7 NFL Odds and Lines

Now here are your Week 7 picks, along with the point spreads and over-under odds for each game.

NFL Week 7 Bettor’s Guide Spread Picks – Predictions – Over-Unders - Free Picks Against the Spread (ATS)

———-

San Diego Chargers at New York Jets
  • Chargers-Jets Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on CBS
  • Chargers-Jets Point Spread: Chargers -1
  • Chargers-Jets Over-Under: 44,5
  • Chargers-Jets Spread Pick: The Jets have been unimpressive all year and San Diego, coming off its bye with (perhaps) Antonio Gates back, will be able to take advantage where Miami could not. Chargers-Jets free spread pick: Chargers -1 | Chargers-Jets prediction straight up: Chargers
Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans
  • Texans-Titans Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on CBS
  • Texans-Titans Point Spread: Titans -3
  • Texans-Titans Over-Under: 44.5
  • Texans-Titans Spread Pick: Houston is struggling with losses of Andre Johnson and Mario Williams, and they now have to face a Titans team that is coming off its bye and ready to erase the nasty taste of that Pittsburgh game from their mouths. Texans-Titans free spread pick: Titans -3 | Texans-Titans prediction straight up: Titans
Washington Redskins at Carolina Panthers
  • Redskins-Panthers Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on FOX
  • Redskins-Panthers Point Spread: Panthers -2.5
  • Redskins-Panthers Over-Under: 43.5
  • Redskins-Panthers Spread Pick: I think we saw the wheels start to fall off the 2011 Redskins last week, and though their D will give Cam Newton some trouble, I’ll take Cam over Jex Beckman any day of the week. Redskins-Panthers free spread pick: Panthers -2.5 | Redskins-Panthers prediction straight up: Panthers
Denver Broncos at Miami Dolphins
  • Broncos-Dolphins Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on CBS
  • Broncos-Dolphins Point Spread: Dolphins -1.5
  • Broncos-Dolphins Over-Under: 42.5
  • Broncos-Dolphins Spread Pick: The Dolphins are hosting a reunion of one of Tim Tebow’s title teams and Tebow is making his first start of the season; since he rises to the occasion and Miami doesn’t (especially at home) I don’t see the Dolphins getting out of there with the W. Broncos-Dolphins free spread: Broncos +1.5 | Dolphins-Broncos prediction straight up: Broncos
Seattle Seahawks at Cleveland Browns
  • Seahawks-Browns Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on FOX
  • Seahawks-Browns Point Spread: Browns -3
  • Seahawks-Browns Over-Under Odds: 40.5
  • Seahawks-Browns Spread Pick: The Browns were supposed to be better this year but haven’t been, whereas Seattle has been better than a lot of people thought they would, yet I think the preseason thoughts on these teams will hold this Sunday and Cleveland gets itself righted a bit. Browns-Seahawks free spread pick: Browns -3 | Browns-Seahawks prediction straight up: Browns
Atlanta Falcons at Detroit Lions
  • Falcons-Lions Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on FOX
  • Falcons-Lions Point Spread: Lions -3.5
  • Falcons-Lions Over-Under Odds: 47
  • Falcons-Lions Spread Pick: The Falcons got a much needed win last week and play better in domes, but they are not in their own dome this weekend, and the Lions will be looking to exact some revenge after losing a hard fought battle against San Francisco last week. Lions-Falcons free spread pick: Lions -3.5 | Lions-Falcons prediction straight up: Lions
Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • Bears-Buccaneers Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 1:00 ET on FOX
  • Bears-Buccaneers Point Spread: Bears -1
  • Bears-Buccaneers Over-Under Odds: 44
  • Bears-Buccaneers Spread Pick: I definitely did not see this coming, and I will absolutely take the more talented Bucs and the one point at home, where they just beat New Orleans, over a Bears team that I am still far from trusting. Bears-Bucs free spread pick: Bucs +1 | Bears-Bucs prediction straight up: Bucs
Pittsburgh Steelers at Arizona Cardinals
  • Steelers-Cardinals Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 4:05 ET on CBS
  • Steelers-Cardinals Point Spread: Steelers -3.5
  • Steelers-Cardinals Over-Under Odds: 41.5
  • Steelers-Cardinals Spread Pick: This rematch of one of the most thrilling Super Bowls ever will be won by the same that won that Super Bowl, as the frustration over Kevin Kolb’s uneven play continues. Steelers-Cardinals free spread pick: Steelers -3.5 | Steelers-Cardinals prediction straight up: Steelers
Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders
  • Chiefs-Raiders Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 4:05 ET on CBS
  • Chiefs-Raiders Point Spread: Raiders -4
  • Chiefs-Raiders Over-Under Odds: 41.5
  • Chiefs-Raiders Spread Pick: The Raiders lost their quarterback and will be facing a bunch of distraction this week with the trade for Carson Palmer whereas Kansas City seems to have gotten its season turned around and now is rested off the bye. Chiefs-Raiders free spread pick: Chiefs +4 | Chiefs-Raiders prediction straight up: Chiefs
Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings
  • Packers-Vikings Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 4:15 ET on FOX
  • Packers-Vikings Point Spread: Packers -9
  • Packers-Vikings Over-Under Odds: 47
  • Packers-Vikings Spread Pick: The Packers’ offense is unstoppable right now, but the Vikings offense is so stoppable that Leslie Frazier has benched Donovan McNabb in favor of the rookie Christian Ponder…which just isn’t fair to do when Aaron Rodgers is on the other sideline. Packers-Vikings free spread pick: Packers -9 | Packers-Vikings prediction straight up: Packers
St. Louis Rams at Dallas Cowboys 
  • Rams-Cowboys Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 4:15 ET on FOX
  • Rams-Cowboys Point Spread: Cowboys -12
  • Rams-Cowboys Over-Under Odds: 44
  • Rams-Cowboys Spread Pick: I keep waiting for St. Louis to show some signs of life, and they continue to disappoint me; so I’m done with the Rams and will throw all of my support behind a Dallas offense that should be able to have a field day throwing the ball to Dez, Miles and Jason Witten (which means, yes, the Cowboys amazing streak of close games will come to an end). Rams-Cowboys free spread pick: Cowboys -12 | Rams-Cowboys prediction straight up: Cowboys
Indianapolis Colts at New Orleans Saints
  • Colts-Saints Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 8:20 ET on NBC
  • Colts-Saints Point Spread: Saints -14
  • Colts-Saints Over-Under Odds: 48.5
  • Colts-Saints Spread Pick: This would have been such a fun game if Peyton Manning were playing; not so much with him out and Curtis Painter in. Colts-Saints free spread pick: Saints -14 | Colts-Saints prediction straight up: Saints
Baltimore Ravens at Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Ravens-Jaguars Date, Time, and TV: Sunday, October 23rd at 8:30 ET on ESPN
  • Ravens-Jaguars Point Spread: Ravens -8
  • Ravens-Jaguars Over-Under Odds: 39
  • Ravens-Jaguars Spread Pick: Jacksonville actually showed some grit in fighting back against Pittsburgh last week, but I don’t think they’ll be able to do the same against a Baltimore defense and offense that is better than either unit for the Steelers this year. Ravens-Jaguars free spread pick: Ravens -8 | Ravens-Jaguars prediction straight up: Ravens
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