How about that game last night? Was that Texas Tech/Houston? Is it illegal to run the ball? And, exactly how hideous is New Orleans’ defense? Remember in their previous game they were thrashed by those Seattle Seahawks. It was a great statement game for the Packers offense, and I was left wondering if speed and talent would rule all in the early weeks after the lockout. In theory, that would be good news for the Eagles. The bad news, of course, is that the Packers are still in the NFC. I’m pretty sure you could win your fantasy match-up with just Green Bay’s starting offense this week, but who cares about fantasy football? That’s for sniveling school children and rule followers. How about some actual picks? Glad you asked. Nina and I are happy to kick off the 3rd season of NFL Pick ‘Em.
We’ll start with yesterday’s big winner. That would have been an epic backdoor at the end, but alas, the Saints forgot they should throw the ball on every play.
JCK: Last Year’s Record: 44-39-2. (This Week, 1-0)
Browns (-6.5) vs. Andy’s Fire Crotch – This almost makes me want to puke in my mouth, but I have a gut feeling Cincy might go 0-16.
Pats (-7) vs Miami – No wildcat, no Williams/Brown tandem; just go ol’ Henne throwing picks. I think the Pats come out gunning to prove that Detroit game was a fluke.
49ers (-5) vs. Seattle Supersonics – Seattle throws in the towel week 1 to secure the first overall pick.
Vikings (+9.5) vs. LA Chargers – Do I really think Fatso McNabb can pull this game out? No, but I cannot pick 5 favorties…right???
Big Dub: Last Year’s Record: 44-37-4. (This Week, 0-1)
Baltimore -1.5 vs. Pittsburgh: This line is dropping faster than my panties after three lemon drops. Very disgusting image, trust me. I’m playing the revenge angle here. Baltimore had the Steelers dead in the playoffs last year on the road and they gave the game away. I don’t know what a statement game is supposed to be, but this has to be one.
Washington +3 vs. New York Giants: I can’t believe I am taking this game, but I think some of the injuries will hurt the Giants and then Eli will compound the problem with picks 1, 2, and 3. That will put him on pace for 48. I do think this game is huge for the Redskins and it might as well be their GD Super Bowl. They have everyone in the world doubting them and they get a chance to prove everyone wrong against one of their most hated rivals and they get to do it at home.
Minnesota +8.5 vs. San Diego: Don’t read into me fading Eli and then taking McNabb. I honestly think Minnesota’s defense will be much improved and allow the Vikings to hang around in this game. But if they don’t keep the Chargers under 40 points I don’t think McNabb can find a way to cover the number.
Denver -3 vs. Oakland: This is the lock of all locks. Denver lost to the Raiders at home last year by about 40. If that doesn’t spell out revenge, I don’t know what does. I’m interested to see how well teams throw against the Raiders without Asomugha out there. Kyle Orton and Brandon Lloyd could have a field day.
Editor’s Note: Big Dub has offered a bonus pick of, (Dallas +4.5 over NYJ). Why you’d want a bonus pick from Big Dub, I don’t know. The game will not count in the official standings.
KRAFT: Last Year’s Record, 45-39-1
It feels like years ago that I was approaching the unthinkable 33% win rate. It’s pick’em time and ever since I turned on the TV last night and watched Lady Antebellum playing at Lambeu for the pregame, I have been fired up. Nothing says I’m going to clothesline you if you come over the middle more than a Lady Antebellum concert. Let’s get it started…
Cleveland -6.5 over Cincinnati- I know that Sam Wyche is an offensive genius, but Andy Dalton is destined for a 8-23, 74 yds, 2 INTS. But, his hair matches the team colors, so things I’m sure are looking up for the 2nd sorriest franchise in the NFL (no disrespect to my Oakland Raiders).
Atlanta -3 over Chicago- Too bad it isn’t -15 degrees in Chicago in September. That’s about the only way this doesn’t turn into a blowout. I don’t think Cutler is going to play either, he is still hurt from the NFC championship game.
Washington +3 over NY Giants- 1. I dont’ bet against Rex Grossman at home. 2. I love hearing analysts try and explain away Eli’s 26 INTS in 2010, by saying things like “a lot of these balls were tipped, or dropped and then picked…”. He threw 26 picks. He has thrown a boatload of pics in his career. It is not an aberration. He is not an elite QB. The Giants stink. They have no secondary. Welcome to 8-8 in 2011, Ny Football Giants.
Tenn +3 over Jax- Luke McCown. 1st start since 2007. This game will be unbelievably unwatchable, what a blessing it will be blacked out.
Arizona -7 over Carolina- Cam Newton on the road. This will not be pretty, unless you have him in DA.
Nichols (Defending Champion): Last Year’s Record: 46-38-1
Philly -4.5 @ St. Louis: It pains me to pick Philly for anything, but given that this is the first year I’ve actually said they could win a SB, and I’m in it to win it, I have to pick them when they’re a sure thing.
Tampa -1.5 v. Detroit: My gut tells me no, the rest of the lines being sh*tty tell me yes. I also can’t give Detroit a win on the road in Week 1.
Tennessee +2 @ Jax: I can’t support any game, home or away, that favors Jacksonville.
Arizona -7 v. Carolina: I’m not putting Cam Newton in the Tim Tebow class; he’ll succeed, at some point and with some team, but not with Carolina.
Denver -3 v. Oakland: I have no clue. Two sh*tty teams, decent spread, I take the home team.
Well, here we go. Honestly, I was going to kick off the year picking against the Eagles. It felt right, but then I saw what an explosive offense could do last night (in theory) and it scared me off. Indecision. That’s my calling card. It led me to the only losing record last year, coming in behind guys who have analysis like, “I have no clue, Give me Denver.” For the recent converts, I will say that my 2009 performance is still the gold standard for 3PT, so don’t give up on me yet.
Detroit (+1.5) over Tampa Bay. Is this line short because Detroit is trendy or because Tampa Bay was a fluke last year? My answer? It doesn’t matter. The beauty of week one is you can come right out and make a spite pick. Also, it’s the only week all year where you know Stafford is starting the game healthy. Who’s covering Megatron? Trick question. He can’t be covered. Blow what? Out.
San Diego (-8.5) over Minnesota. Not sure why everyone thinks the Vikings are a darling to cover. It’s like, well the Vikings stink, but they won’t lose by nine. You’re right. They won’t. It’ll be more like 17. I’m all in on Philip Rivers to Vincent Jackson. Close your eyes and let it happen.
Dallas (+5) over New York Jets. I don’t think the Jets should be laying more than 3 points to anyone. At least not until they’ve proved that can score a point here or there. The Cowboys should be absolutely rabid. Not that the Jets will be flat, but I see a big skill position edge for the ‘Boys, and so I wouldn’t be surprised if the Sanchize found himself in a little 0-1 hole to start the season.
New England (-7) over Miami. Tom Brady has a bit of a mixed record in Miami, but he’s rarely faced a Dolphins team this putrid. I think there’s some hope for a slightly improved Dolphins offense, but we’re talking about baby steps against a team that always looks on the verge of scoring 40 points. I think Brady uses his full compliment of 6 TEs and 11 backs to carve up the Miami defense at will. A valiant pick-6 by Chad Henne late seals the deal.
Atlanta (-2.5) over Chicago. I think this is a week one line for Chicago die-hards. It should be about six. The Bears are an especially vile breed of god-awful. There’s nothing intimidating about going into Chicago in September. It’s beautiful that time of year! The Falcons watched the Saints lose last night and they should know it’s time to get an early lead in the division. Every game counts. And, Cutler.