Week 11 NFL Picks.

Is it Skunked, Or Is That Just How it Tastes?

Is it Skunked, Or Is That Just How it Tastes?

I did not try a new beer this week.  I’m embarrassed.  What can I say?  Instead of lying about it, though, I’m just going to be honest and skip a week.  Instead I’ll try to stick with the beer theme and trace my journey to Sierra Nevada devotee.  It was a quick, intoxicated road through a lot of mediocre beer.  I’ll try to be brief.

Early College: Early on in college I drank almost exclusively light beer.  This was due to availability and necessity. Drinking games require a certain “lightness,” unless you are a deeply sick individual.  When I wasn’t slogging through Keystone and Natty I developed what I thought was a taste for Michelob Light.  Very Odd.  There was also one frat that served Yuengling to the special party guests, which made me think Yuengling was special, when in fact, it’s swill.

Brief St. Pauli Girl Phase:  Was it the bottle?  Was it my desire to get a neon beer sign and be that cliche?  Who knows. It was so long ago now, but I remember being irrationally excited about St. Pauli Girl and showing it off like it was a fine wine when I had a case.

Big Heineken:  I went in hard for Heineken.  Look at that star on the green bottle.  Beauty.  I was a huge Heineken fan and actually defended it against people who complained about the taste.  Senior year my roommate got me a case for my birthday and that was a great present.  Then there was Heineken Light–also exciting. Eventually, I strayed to hops and of course, there is that occasional Heineken that is EXTRA funky.

Leaving College a Bud Light Man: Every single person who drinks beer in college emerges with a preferred American Light Beer.  You could argue this isn’t true, but you’d be comically and tragically wrong.  I was Bud Light.  Then you go home and see all your boys and the 30-pack depends on who picks it up.  A Miller guy?  A Coors guy?  There was always that balance of being happy you didn’t pay for it, yet a little sad it wasn’t the RIGHT American light beer.

The End:  I think I had my first Sierra Nevada my senior year of college.  Smack in the middle of the Heineken era.  It was an immediate connection.  Several factors kept me from immediately converting.  Price, need for lower ABV, peer pressure?  But over the next couple years the habit formed and there I was, a million miles away from St. Pauli Girl.

If you bet on football, you should bet on the following….


DC, 24-23-3

Cleveland (+6) over Cincinnati.  No way the depleted Bengals defense can stop Touchdown Tommy Vardell in this one.  Browns outright, 23-16.

Pittsburgh (+2.5) over Detroit.  I just can’t stop picking against the Lions and this feels like a nice, big fat letdown. Kind of a trap line, no?  Pittsburgh 31-27.

New England (+2.5) over Carolina.  YOU CAN’T BE SERIOUS.  New England, 42-13.

New Orleans (-3) over San Francisco.  I don’t think the Niners can hang with the Saints if the game opens up.  New Orleans, 34-20.

Green Bnd ay (+5) over New York Giants.  Scott Tolzien is a poor man’s Mike Tomczak.  Green Bay, 15-11.


Grossy, 29-19-2.

Washington (+3.5) over Philadelphia.  If you haven’t heard the Eagles are the worst home team in professional sports.  Washington is in a huge revenge spot, RG3 is a lot healthier and the Eagles are a little banged up.  I’d call this pick 35% logic and 65% Foles hate.

Seattle (-13) over Minnesota.  Did you know it’s Core-Darrell Patterson and not Corda-Rel?  Because I didn’t.  Seattle seems to be over its bout with covering big numbers and back at home they should fully embarrass the Vikings.  AP is going nowhere, various amounts of mayhem, a complete blowout.

Kansas City (+8) over Denver.  Too many points.  This is like spotting Andy Reid eight minutes at a buffet.  Can’t do it. Won’t do it.  Reid is great at preparation, which is why he does well after a bye-week and Pey-Pey face has some gimpy ankles.  That non-athletic body is breaking down.  KC’s pass rush, the frigid temps, it all conspires to keep this one close.  This is the biggest game in Kansas City since what, ’93?  We need to acknowledge that.

New Orleans (-3) over San Francisco.  The Saints at home is a pretty simple formula.  The Niners haven’t beaten a good team this year.  TRUE STORY.  Plus when the Saints win, Rob Ryan goes out drinking with the people.  The whole city needs that.

New England (+2.5) over Carolina.  I think a couple weeks ago this line would have been Patriots (-6) and you would have taken it, because TOM BRADY! And, the Panthers have that aura about them.  Then the game would have started and it would have been a shockingly ugly affair and you’d be nervous the whole time, etc.  Well, that’s exactly what is going to happen.  This is a going to be like an old AFC North slopfest, but if you’re giving points, I’ll go ahead and take them.


Kraft, 31-18-1

  1. New York Jets (+1) over Buffalo
  2. New England (+2.5) over North Carolina
  3. San Francisco (+3) over New Orleans
  4. Seattle (-13) over Minnesota
  5. Cincinnati (-6) over Cleveland


Nichols, 23-16-1

  1. Tampa (+1.5) over Atlanta
  2. Miami (+1.5) over San Diego
  3. Cleveland (+6) over Cincinnati
  4. New Orleans (-3) over San Francisco
  5. New England (+2.5) over Carolina


Big Dub, 29-20-2

  1. Tennessee(+3) over Indianapolis
  2. Tampa (+1.5) over Atlanta
  3. Detroit (-2.5) over Pittsburgh
  4. Cincinnati (-6) over Cleveland
  5. San Francisco (+3) over New Orleans


JCK, Record: 22-27-1

  1. Cincinnati (-6) over Cleveland
  2. Detroit (-2.5) over Pittsburgh
  3. New England (+2.5) over Carolina
  4. Oakland (+7) over Houston
  5. San Diego (-1.5) over Miami

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