New gambler in town

DARREN FRIESEN -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 7:31 AM ET

Never one to miss the regular poker game and with a compulsion to lay a dime on the longshots, we here at the Sun decided it might be best to get last year's Betting Man Steve Macfarlane away from the city's sportsbooks and on the road with the Flames.

I'll be grabbing the Betting Man reins for this NFL season in an attempt to beat Stevie Mac's 124-124-8 record from a season ago.

So who's betting on me? Yeah, I thought not.

* TENNESSEE +6 1/2 AT ST. LOUIS: The Rams' defence will once again take the pressure off the 'Greatest Show on Turf.' Rams 28 Titans 17

* OAKLAND +8 1/2 AT PHILADELPHIA: In a battle of the two best pass/catch duos in the league, expect Donovan McNabb and Terrell Owens to outdo counterparts Kerry Collins and Randy Moss. Eagles 30 Raiders 25

* ATLANTA +3 AT BUFFALO: A healthy Mike Vick just needs to put up some points as the Bills are struggling on offence and won't be able to match. Falcons 27 Bills 24

* CINCINNATI -3 AT CHICAGO: If Cincy's defence can keep exceeding expectations, expect a narrow victory for Bengals as Carson Palmer and Co. are firing on all cylinders. Bengals 35 Bears 32

* JACKSONVILLE +3 AT N.Y. JETS: Both squads are allergic to the endzone but if Curtis Martin's good to go, expect a Jets win. Jets 22 Jaguars 19

* CLEVELAND +13 1/2 AT INDIANAPOLIS: Browns first-year head coach Romeo Crennel says he knows how to stop Peyton Manning and his high-powered offence. Sure, but can Crennel's offence get through the Colts' revamped D? Colts 34 Browns 10

* TAMPA BAY -3 1/2 AT GREEN BAY: Brett Favre's too good to let the Pack fall to 0-3 and Ahman Green won't stay scoreless forever. Packers 24 Buccaneers 22

* NEW ORLEANS +3 1/2 AT MINNESOTA: Nate Burelson might be questionable for the Vikes but Daunte Culpepper won't go three games without throwing a TD. Vikings 30 New Orleans 28

* ARIZONA +6 1/2 AT SEATTLE: The Cards were picked to be this year's biggest surprise in the NFC and they'll surprise Seattle this weekend. Cardinals 28 Seattle 24 in the UPSET OF THE WEEK

* DALLAS -6 1/2 AT SAN FRANCISCO: Bill Parcels won't let his team forget about that bitter loss to the 'Skins Monday night. Cowboys 18 49ers 12

* NEW ENGLAND +3 AT PITTSBURGH: The Steelers have had it easy till now but that doesn't mean they won't finally solve their chief rival. Steelers 20 New England 18

* NEW YORK GIANTS +5 1/2 AT SAN DIEGO: San Diego's defence will be extra rough on Eli Manning, who said prior to last year's draft he wouldn't play for the Chargers. Chargers 35 Giants 23

* KANSAS CITY +2 1/2 AT DENVER: The Chiefs' improved defence will make Broncos QB Jake Plummer do what he does best -- throw INTs. Chiefs 30 Broncos 28

* CAROLINA -3 1/2 AT MIAMI: Carolina proved their defence is one of their biggest assets in an impressive victory over the Pats. Carolina 24 Dolphins 19 in this week's BEST BET


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