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NFL Midseason Report

NFC North - Oh, by the way, Green Bay leads the division and Chicago is right behind. Haven't heard? Probably not, with the endless (and I mean ENDLESS) Brett Favre/Brad Childress/Randy Moss melodrama, day after day after day of these guys. All for a 3-5 Minnesota squad that, really, does not deserve that much attention. As for the actual football, the Packers are getting mean and physical and Da Bears hang around despite Jay Cutler's excesses. Detroit is a whole lot better and really should be 4-4 if it could close things out, even get a call or two. All that, plus Matthew Stafford keeps getting sidelined, adding to the Lions' bad luck.

NFC South - Talk about a canyon between haves and have-not. Atlanta has managed 6-2 without a healthy homestand, and they're about to have one as the team with the best chance to be the NFC's top seed. Maybe the Super Bowl hangover lasted eight games, for New Orleans sure has looked good, on both sides of the ball, in recent weeks. Tampa Bay has taken a giant leap for mankind and might steal a playoff spot if that improvement continues. Carolina, on the other hand, has gone all Tea Party in their look backwards. No wonder Jerry Jones might be interested in John Fox as a coach.

NFC West - A theory was offered earlier this season that a losing record might take this division. Theory is turning into fact as Seattle ran from its 4-2 start with two straight stinkers, Arizona is realizing that it never should have cut Matt Leinart so quickly and San Francisco found new and creative ways to lose - though no one in town noticed because of the GIants finally winning a World Series. So St. Louis, it's up to you. Never mind that Sam Bradford is a rookie or that tough games remain. If anyone is to salvage this division, it's the vastly improved Rams.

So who do I like now to get to that big game in Arlington where Jerry Jones will just be a gracious host? Try Steelers and Giants on for size, though the way this season has gone, they could both go into tailspins by December. Better to find out who the hottest teams is on he first week in January, and ride that horse all the way to Texas on Feb. 6.

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