Pressure? You want to talk about pressure? How about being in my shoes? I know that this site gets over 15,000 unique users per day, and after I’ve delivered eight wins against only two losses in my NFL picks this season, I’m sure people are logging on to see who I like this week. And if you’re one of those guys, I don’t blame you. Eighty percent is eighty percent. Try to find one of those pay services that can legitimately go eighty percent. And this service is free. What’s better than free? Eighty percent winners is better than free. (You notice I have to keep mentioning it now, because I’m sure it ain’t gonna last)
Now a couple of things before I get into this weeks picks. Do not do anything stupid with your money. I know that right now I have the hot hand but before you start throwing cash around, you need to think. I’ll give you some scenarios.
If you are going to bet money that was designated for something like, say, I don’t know, rent, don’t do it.
If you were going to bet money that was set-aside for something else, like maybe, groceries, again, don’t do it.
If you were going to bet money that you were planning on using to take your girl out for a nice, romantic dinner, and an evening on the town, then I don’t have to tell you what to do. You look that girl straight in the eye and tell her that she is absolutely going to get her night out………as long as your teams cover. So with no further adieu, here they are.
OK, I lied, there is some more adieu, or do-do. I just wanted to clarify that the picks I make each week are in no particular order. I don’t like the first one better than the last or anything like that. If I do like one extra special, you know, my gold star, triple lock, once a year super duper……anyway, I’ll let you know.
This week there are eight. I didn’t plan on picking eight games. Many ‘experts’ would say that picking eight games is too many. They may be right, but I just did what I have done every other week. I just looked at the lines and these are the ones that I thought looked, shall we say, exploitable.
Oakland +4 over MIAMI: Lane Kiffin has the Raiders competing. I know they’ve played the Lions and Browns who may not be the upper echelon of the league, but the silver and black have been winning in the fourth quarter at some point of every game.. And the fish, well they do what fish do….stink.
Oakland/MIAMI over 41: Not only do the Dolphins give up points to everyone, but Zach Thomas is a question mark. And the Raiders, contrary to last year, are actually scoring points and giving them up. I took Raiders and Cleveland over last week and won easily. I’ll take Raiders and Miami over this week and win again.
Green Bay –1 ½ over MINNESOTA: I hate taking divisional, road favorites, but this game intrigues me. If this was 1997 and the Packers were 3-0, they would be nine point favorites. In 2007 they’re 3-0 and they are a point and a half. Hey, all they’ve done is beat Phily, San Diego, and hammer the Giants in New York. What else do you want them to do? Minnesota, on the hand, doesn’t know who its quarterback is for this week. They’ve played two quarterbacks this year so far, neither of which has done much. And defensively the Packers are no pushovers. Sometimes the world is really slow to realize that some teams are much better than they thought, and that some teams are much worse than they thought. I think the Packers are good, at least NFC good. If no one else does, then I’ll just ride them every week until everyone else catches up.
NY Jets –3 ½ over BUFFALO: Again, another divisional, road favorite. Let’s look at this though. The Bills have done nothing, and now Posluszny is out for the year. They could go 2-14. The Jets played the Pats and at the Ravens in their first two weeks, which is a pretty tough opening for anyone. Last week they got Pennington back, and while I’m not a huge Pennington fan, he did lead them to a big lead. Their three-point win over Miami wasn’t as close as it looked. The Jets are well coached and they know that if they are going to make a run at the post-season, they have to win games like this. The only thing that scares me at all is that Losman is out for the Bills, and maybe the back-up can inject some life into the offense. On second thought, I’m not that scared.
CLEVELAND +4 over Baltimore: I knew it wasn’t going to be a popular pick last week when I took Arizona +7 ½ against the Ravens, but they covered. I’m sure this one won’t be popular either, but I think this is a bad match-up right now for the Ravens. Cleveland beat Cincinnati and should have beaten Oakland. For the first time in a while the Browns believe in themselves. In November, the beliefs may be all gone, but right now, they think they can win. The Ravens, on the hand, have struggled every week. Is this the week they put it together? Is this the week the build a big lead and don’t let the other team back into the game? I don’t know. I keep thinking of this, though. Last year the Ravens were really good and the Browns were really bad. On their trip to Cleveland, Matt Stover had to pull it out in the final minute from fifty yards. This year, if Cleveland is better and the Ravens are worse, what would make us expect anything different?
CLEVELAND/Baltimore over 40: Cleveland does not have a good defense, and the Ravens defense is getting less healthy rather than healthier. I think both teams will score at least twenty. This one should be a lot more offensively entertaining than in years past. I know that historically the Ravens are an under team but not this year and not this week.
INDIANAPOLIS –9 ½ over Denver: Indy has played one game at home and blew out the Saints. Now while the Saints aren’t what anyone thought they would be, remember how the Colts play at home. Their last two wins, which were both close, were on the road and on grass. Inside, on turf, I think they roll. Also, this is not your father’s Denver Broncos. Just as no one has realized that the Packers are good, people are slower to realize how bad the Broncos are. We see the uniforms and we see Mike Shanahan on the sidelines and we assume that they are good. They aren’t.
INDY/Denver under 46: The Colts defense is better than people think, especially at home. And the crowd noise won’t help young Mister Overrated….I mean Mister Cutler. I think the Colts will get an early lead and then put together a boring, clock controlled, second half. Something like 34-10.
So there you have it, eight beauties. At least right now they look beautiful. Maybe by 3:30 on Sunday afternoon, they won’t look so good. I’m rooting for a week of 5-3. 4-4 will be fine and 3-5 I can live with. Anything worse, I don’t want to think about. Anything better, I wouldn’t expect it, but it is possible. Did I mention that I’m 8-2 so far?
Good luck and have fun.