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The Packers have won five straight games after a 2-3 start despite the absence of wide receiver Greg Jennings for all of those games and wide receiver Jordy Nelson for all or most of two of them.
Much of the credit for those wins has gone to quarterback Aaron Rodgers, but the Packers have also uncovered a major offensive contributor in Randall Cobb. The wideout is leading the team in catches and ranks second in receiving yards and touchdowns in his second season while also acting as a threat on running plays and in the return game. That’s led defensive tackle B.J. Raji to put him on a pretty lofty perch right alongside Rodgers in the team’s hierarchy.
“(They) are the only two guys that we really need out there,” Raji said, via Jason Wilde of ESPNWisconsin.com. “He’s our version of Percy Harvin, man.”
Spread: Steelers minus-1 (at a few books)
Public consensus pick: N/A
SuperContestants: 115-88 in favor of Steelers
Public perception: This line just started going up Wednesday with Charlie Batch replacing Byron Leftwich at quarterback for Pittsburgh, and even though I haven't seen any betting stats from the public yet, I feel it's safe to predict they'll land on the Steelers coming off their near upset of the Ravens on Sunday night.
Wiseguys' view: The wiseguys have shown more faith in the Browns than the public has, and were rewarded with Cleveland covering against Dallas last week as one of the top five consensus plays in the SuperContest. Still, the sharps will probably be split on this matchup.
Tuley's Take: I am a little surprised this number came up so short, so I'm making it my "Chalk Play of the Week." I do respect what the Browns have been doing, but they generally need more points to be a good bet. The Steelers, who again gave the Ravens all they could handle, should step up on defense and do enough on offense for a comfortable win. The pick: Steelers.
After the bad ruling on turkey day against the lions the league will look over the rules
According to two league sources, the competition committee is considering organizing a conference call in the coming days -- the committee is certain to discuss a change at some point, it's a matter now of when -- to amend the rule that prevents reviews when coaches throw the challenge flag after scoring plays and turnovers. One league source called a potential in-season change "possible, but not necessarily likely."
Info passed along by Matt Dearinger--the man with all of the Sunday Morning info on who to sit and who to start!
MIN - WR Percy Harvin ruled out
Updating a previous report, Minnesota Vikings WR Percy Harvin (ankle) will not travel with the team for their Week 12 game and has officially been ruled out.
Harvin's ankle is not where it needs to be for him to return to the field. This will mean more targets for TE Kyle Rudolph and rookie WR Jarius Wright.
San Francisco 49ers at New Orleans Saints - Open: Pick, Move: +1 (THIS SHOULD MOVE MORE WITH THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF QB)
Niners coach Jim Harbaugh is mum on who his starting QB will be for this game, but numerous reports suggest Colin Kaepernick will be under center on Sunday after his impressive outing last week.
“We are using Niners -1 now and 60 percent of the money is on New Orleans,” . “I think it’s a good thing for San Francisco to use Kaepernick. He provides them with more of a dual threat (run and pass) on offense.”
With the clock still ticking on the Saints’ exclusive window to fix coach Sean Payton’s contract extension before he becomes a free agent in February, the players made even more clear their feelings about their suspended head coach in Saturday’s 2012 team photo.
According to Ed Werder of ESPN, everyone wore a Payton-style visor, and an empty spot was left in the front row.