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November 25, 2012

SPORTVIEW: If the Browns can't beat the Steelers today, shame on them

OPINION — I HAVE BEEN waiting anxiously by the phone. Since the Steelers were down to Charlie Batch at quarterback, I figured they would be looking for another senior citizen as a back-up.

If I’m not mistaken, Charlie is about my age — I’ll be 65 on Monday. Although I’m not sure if he’s in better shape or not since he was banged up earlier in the year. So wouldn’t it be logical that Pittsburgh would seek another graybeard as back-up. After all, the team practiced all week with their new slow-motion offense.

OK, what I’m trying to say is this. If the Browns can’t beat the Steelers this week, shame on them!

First Ben Roethlisberger suffered some bizarre rib injury that I’ve been informed must come when your wife is about to have a baby. Then Byron Leftwich suffered rib injuries during the game against Baltimore, but coach Mike Tomlin must have thought that even with bad ribs he was still better than Batch so he left him in the game.

So what do the Steelers do to “improve” the team. They go out and sign Plaxico Burress. That’s right, that same Plaxico Burress who has been trouble ever since he first came into the league with Pittsburgh.

While he once had great talent, he also had great baggage. Now the talent isn’t what it was, but the baggage ... It used to be that Burress was known for shooting off his mouth. Then in New York he shot off his leg.

Obviously the Steelers couldn’t find any better wide receiver when they searched a bunch of prisons, so they picked up Burress.

OK, what I’m trying to say is this. If the Browns can’t beat the Steelers this week, shame on them!

Cleveland is close to becoming a winning team. They just don’t know how to finish off games. Last week against Dallas was an example after they led 13-0 at halftime, but then lost in OT.

Meanwhile, Pittsburgh is really not that good. Roethlisberger has been the key to close wins for the Steelers this season. And they are terrible on the road, going 1-3 this year.

Some people have wanted me to apply the “Lynbo Curse” by picking Pittsburgh to win. But I won’t resort to those tactics this week. Besides, I don’t believe in jinxes. I wore No. 13 my entire sports career.

The Browns are ready to turn the corner and this should be the week they do it. Look for a 50-0 Browns victory. (Just kidding, make that 20-17.)

OK, what I’m trying to say is this: If the Browns can’t beat the Steelers this week, shame on them!

Last week my picks went 12-1 for a season mark of 91-57. Following are the rest of this week’s predictions (betting line in parentheses just for fun):

Cincy (-71⁄2) over Oakland

Arizona (-3) over St. Louis

Green Bay (plus 21⁄2) over NY Giants

Tampa Bay (even) over Atlanta

Baltimore (-2) over San Diego

Denver (-10) over Kansas City

Miami (plus 3) over Seattle

Buffalo (plus 3) over Indy

Tennessee (-3) over Jacksonville

Minnesota (no line) over Chicago

Philly (no line) over Carolina

 

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