College football legend Phil Steele, author of the annual Phil Steele’s College Football Preview, shares his can’t miss picks for this week in college football and the NFL.
Alabama -12 Arkansas
I rank this Bama defense even better than their 2009 version that allowed 11.7 ppg. In that season Ryan Mallett made his first road start and threw for 160 yds (12 of 35) while throwing for 297 ypg in his other regular season games. Arkansas QB Tyler Wilson will the find the going just as tough.
Texas A&M -4 Oklahoma St
Last year’s game was very misleading as A&M had a 535-351 yard edge but was done in by turnovers. While OSU has my #1 ranked offense this year but A&M is right behind them at #5 while the Aggies have a large edge in my defensive rankings (#15 vs #53). A&M has not allowed a sack on the year allowing Ryan Tannehill to complete 72% of his passes. The 8th ranked teams knocks off the #7 team this week.
New Orleans -4 Houston
When you think about the Saints you think about their offense which outgained GB by 83 yards then beat Chicago 30-13 as a winner for all readers here last week. New Orleans loves to bring pressure and last week had 6 sacks and 10 QB hits. Houston went 1-5 LY when allowing 3 or more sacks in a game and their only win was in OT. The Saints get us a second straight win.
Seattle +3.5 Arizona
How can we pick an 0-2 team that has been outscore by a combined 57-17? Seattle outgained SF in the opener and was done in by -3 in turnovers and than had to face an angry Pittsburgh squad off a loss. Meanwhile, Arizona is 1-1 but was ougained versus Carolina by 83 yards in the opener and by 131 yards last week at Washington. Seattle beat all 3 NFC West teams by an average of 16 points per game last year and the crowd will be raucous for their home opener.
Phil Steele is the editor and publisher of the annual Phil Steele’s College Football Preview. Make sure to visit his website PhilSteele.com. You can also interact with Phil when you “Like” him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter (@philsteele042).