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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Damn It Feels Good To Be A Gangsta...




To quote the Fresh Prince...

"Mirror, mirror on the wall...Jean Claude Van DAMN I'M FINE!"

Pro Picks this week? BAM! 10-3...

College Picks the last 2 weeks? BAM! 24-9...

And Fantasy Football this week? Well, that's the capper. BAM!I got Brett Favre, bitches! I got me the high score of the week. I got me a 30 point win. I'm now in 1st place. And now the rest of my league will truly know what it means to find someone "unbearable"...

I mean simply put, I'm on freakin' fire. And to be completely honest, it's about damn time...

Tackle Box
I was a huge fan of the Jets/Cardinals game for 3 key reasons...

1: Brett Favre's 6 TD passes, two of which went to my main man, Jerricho Cotchery. Vindication, baby. It just feels soooo good, to be proven oh soo right. And yes. I fully realize how badly I am jinxing myself right now. I just feel too good to care...

2: Kurt Warner hurting his hand Now that's great TV right there. It caused him to make a face as if he were stung by a bee at a church picnic. It caused FOX to continually zoom in on his hand. And most importantly, it allowed the camera crews to get those all important shots of renowned red carpet strutter, and clip board carrying extraordinaire, Matty Leinhart. Hey, the chicks dig 'em...

3: Anquan Boldin, finally confirming my suspicions that he is A) the toughest man in football and B) the actual incarnation of Rod "Show Me the Money!" Tidwell from the movie Jerry Maguire. If you don't know what I'm talking about, then you don't think Will Smith looks like Robert Horry either. These are all your problems, and I feel really bad for you. But for the rest of us, as horrifying as Boldin's injury was (looks like he's gonna be OK, by he way), it made you feel just a little bit vindicated. No, you aren't crazy. Anquan Boldin IS Rod Tidwell. Now show that man his mother fuckin' money!...


At this point I'm not sure what's worse. Having no job at all? Or having to work for Al Davis. My man Lane Kiffin may not have pulled out a win (or a cover, that bastard) against the Chargers this weekend, but at least he's discovered ways to piss his boss off while still giving it 100% on the field. A 75 yard FG attempt with no time left in the 1st half? Hahaha. A FG attempt from your own 41 yard line?!? I know Janikowski has that big, drunken, Polish leg of his, but even he doesn't have a chance in Hell without some sort of gale force tail wind behind him. Good for you, though, Lane. At least you're havin' a little fun stickin' it to the man on your way out the door..


...and what's even funnier in all this? That Raiders are young, getting better, and aren't even that bad right now...

I'll have more football, complete with a preview of the Pats game, on Friday. For now, it's time to move on to some bigger, and arguably better things...

Red Sox Update

Well the playoffs are finally here. They've felt like a given for what seems like a year already, but seeing as they actually are here now, I figure it's time I give them their due...

The main concern for the Sox coming into their ALDS series with the Angels has got to be the general health of their squad. Drew may be coming back into the lineup, but with Lowell dinged up, and now Beckett being pushed back to game 3, some of the team's best post season producers aren't exactly going in this thing primed for success. And Beckett's injury is the worst. At first, it looked as if the Angels strategy of picking the longer series would work in favor of the Sox. But now that Beckett won't be able to make 2 starts on full rest in the 1st 4 games, you have to clearly tip the scales in favor of the home field Angels. Now the Sox will throw Lester and Dice K in games 1,2,4 and 5, with Beckett, their post season stalwart, limited to just one appearance in game 3. Not to say that Lester and Dice K can't get the job done, but such a drastic change to begin a series is never a good sign...

As for the Sox chances, I'm gonna take the cowardly rout and avoid making any prediction whatsoever. The Angels are the better team and the Sox aren't healthy, but Boston is the defending champion and they have the Angels # in the playoffs. So instead of even trying to figure it out, I'm just sit back, relax and enjoy the action...

Besides. If the Angels win, I was right, and if the Red Sox win, I'll be happy! Whoever thought straddling a fence could be so comfortable?...


Here are the rest of the playoff match ups, and my "expert" take on how I think the respective series' will unfold...

Playoff Predictions
Minnesota Twins/Chicago White Sox vs Tampa Bay Rays

Rays in 4: I don't care which team they end up palyin'. I'm guessin' the bright lights and the pressure of October won't get to the Baby Rays until at least the ALCS. They may drop one, but they'll cruise into round 2...

...and good looks by Scott Kazmir. He calls out the fans, and they magically sell out their 1st two home playoff games. Good work, Scotty. If only the New York teams could find players like you...

Los Angeles Dodgers vs Chicago Cubs

Dodgers in 5: I'm picking against the Cubs, and I'm picking with Manny Ramirez. And as if a possible Dodger/Boston final wasn't already juicy enough, check out the latest yarns being hurled out of "MannyWood"...




In case you're not into reading the article, can't read or just can't bring yourself to pull away from my mesmerizing rhetoric, let me just sum it up by saying this. When Manny hits, when Manny performs, his antics are cute. When Manny isn't performing, or when the team isn't winning, the antics become distracting. And when Manny himself becomes unhappy? Well then his antics cause him to burn your team, and leave down for the next big pay day. Dodger fans should just consider themselves lucky that the Manny they're dealing with now, is probably the only one they'll ever know...

Milwaukee Brewers vs Philadelphia Phillies

Phillies in 3: I see this series as a toss up, I really do. But seeing as I picked the Phils to go to the Series in my pre season prediction, I'm sticking with my guns. I got 'em in the shock of the 1st round, as they sweep the "happy to be there" Brew Crew right back to the land of the Beast...

I'll have more playoff commentary on Friday after some games have been played, but until then, that's all I got for ya...


News and Notes
Still don't believe me that the PGA isn't all about Tiger Woods? Well then you obviously weren't watching this weekend's season ending Tour Championship. Anthony Kim and Sergio Garcia rode the rush of the Ryder Cup to an intriguing final round pairing, but seeing as neither of them are T-Woods, they couldn't close, and allowed Camillo Villegas to steal his 1st Tour victory. They had it all set up for a final round to remember, and the the best thing that happened was when the swash-buckling Kim laced a spectator off the dome-piece with one of his drives. Entertaining? Well, of course. Just not in the same kind of ass-kicking-yet-wholesome way that we've come to expect from one, Mr. Woods...

As for the season ending FedEx Cup Championship? Exactly. I forgot it was going on too. But it didn't even factor in. All Vijay Singh had to do to wrap it up was make it through 4 rounds and sign his card. He did that, claimed the FedEx title, and made Carl Pavano look like a common thief as he discretely pocketed a cool $10 mil. No gun. No mask. But with Tiger lying gimp on the sidelines, that's about as clear cut a case of robbery this side of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac...

Paul Newman passed away this week at the age of 83, and his presence in the entertainment world will truly be missed. The guy made great films, had an undeniable passion for sports and even managed to create some delicious food products...

Movies. Sports. Food. Talk about covering all your bases, right? The guy was a legend, plain and simple...

And to stay on the entertainment tip for a hot second, there's yet another bunch of reasons why my last 48 hours have been so prosperous. Used to be sports programming too up most of my TV viewing time, but now that I've been back on the DVR kick for the past year or so, I've been able to get back in the swing of some regular TV. Granted I still think most of what's out there is complete crap, but at least some of my favorites make watching TV on Sunday, a very gratifying entertainment experience...

Family Guy (Sunday 9 pm on FOX)
The new season kicked off this weekend, and while the episode wasn't my favorite, it's just good to have this show back in action. I've been watching a lot of the older episodes recently in syndication, and the way this show has evolved through the years has just been so fulfilling. Seth MacFarlane and his crew know what their strengths are and they play to them with beautifully. Now close the window! You're lettin' all the stank out!...

...and make sure you hang around and watch the new episodes of King of the Hill at 9:30. I know I'm the only one north of Raleigh that seems to like it, but give it a shot. It'll take a few episodes, but I bet it starts to grow on ya...

Mad Men (Sunday 10 pm on AMC)
The critics are right. This is the best show you aren't watching. They smoke cigs, drink booze, objectify women, and slang advertising. It's another show you'll need to learn the characters before you actually start to really get into it, but it's well worth it. And if that's too much work for ya, then I think Cops should be on...



It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Thursdays 10 pm on FX)
Mad Men is the best, but this is the funniest show you're not watching. I look at it like the bastard child of Cheers, Seinfeld and Family Guy. I'm not saying is as good as any of those shows yet, but it has the potential to be there someday. It's got that somethin'. That special thing. It's got...Wild Card bitches!... and GREENMAN!!

Entourage (Sunday 10 pm HBO)
I've been pretty put off by Entourage ever since the end of season one, but Vince's renaissance has got me back on the wagon. I know it sounds odd, and maybe a little dumb, but this show is at it's best when the characters are doing a little more than just partying, making bad movies, smoking weed and fucking. And now that they've returned to some decent plot lines, it's been rather refreshing...


OK, back to the gravy train for a minute. In case you hadn't heard, I'm hotter than a case of Mad Dog 20/20 at a To Catch a Predator screening when it comes to making my picks...

Hell. At this point, I say you give me a pen, a pad, a case of beer, and 3 of my smart Jew friends from Syracuse (Happy New Year by the way), and I'll have this country's financial crisis figured out in about 25 minutes...

And that's not racist either. Jews know money, plain and simple. And seeing as I don't, I'd be in desperate need of their help. Now had the matter been about beating your wife and destroying your liver, I would have asked an Irishman. Inbreeding and chewing tobacco? I'd ask a West Virginian. And naturally, if this were about choking on it long and hard, I'd ask the Mets...

My Picks
Last Week: 10-3-0 (Top Picks: 4-3-0)

Overall: 33-25-0 (.583)

Top Picks: 13-7-0 (.650)

NCAA Picks
Last Week: 9-6-0

Overall: 56-32-2 (.633)

IS it possible for me to stay hot for yet another week when we roll into week 5? In a word? YES. So make sure you come back on Friday. I make you money. You buy me beer. Everybody wins...


And speaking of everybody winning...




Fantasy Update
Last Week: Hanyur's HamFighters 99 FUCK BOSTON 56
Overall: 3-1-0, 2nd place

Next Week vs Sick Jonny Cakes (2-2-0)

My boys did some serious work this week, led by Favre and Cotchery. But with those fools on their bye in week 5, things could get a little dicey. In week 5 I'll turn to Kyle Orton, Devin Hester and my bevy of Saints to march me on to victory, and I guarantee it won't be pretty. But hey, it's gonna take a long, long time before I come down from this Brett Favre TD high, so at this point I'm just willing to roll with the punches. Truth be told, if you had told me before the season started that this is how I'd be going into week 5, I'd have been pretty doggone content. I would have been sketched the fuck out if you told me I'd be using the Orton-to-Hester connection, but those are the crazy match ups that can often result in unexplainable fantasy success...


So wish me luck, and make sure to set your DVR to "pimp" and so you can catch all those shows...


pssssst!...It's right next to the SAP button...

Friday, September 26, 2008

NFL Week 4 Picks

Well pass me an ACLU card and change my name to John Rocker. The freaking Rays have their magic number whittled down to one, and are about to walk away with their 1st ever AL East division crown. The Sox will be headed to the West Coast barring some sort of miracle, and despite my early season ball-washing of the Los Angeles Mexicanos de Beisbol (AKA: The Angels), like the Red Friends chances to pull the upset. I know they'll have a target on their backs and the Angels will be out for sweet revenge, but there's just somethin' about this time where I'm finding it really hard to write off their chances to repeat. Maybe it's the side of me that wants the Sox to stick it to Manny and the Dodgers that has me all riled up. I don't know. But I know I'm excited for the playoffs to get started. And I know I'll get to all of that at the start of next week, right before the quest for the Fall Classic kicks in to full swing...


As for now? Well, it's football time. And even though the Pats are using their week 4 bye to lick their wounds, I can guarantee ya that I'm sure as Hell ready for some football. Maybe not as "ready" as that roided out country song might suggest, but that's all bound to change after I layout a full breakdown of this week's games.



Week 4 Picks


Tennessee Titans (-1) vs Minnesota Vikings

Two teams. Two solid defenses. Two back up quarterbacks. I like the Titans defense better. I like Kerry Collins better than Gus Frerotte. And I don't like Minnesota's chances of pulling this one out on the road. Besides, since I've turned over a new leaf and started sticking with winning strategies, who better to pick than Titans head man Jeff Fisher? He's the longest tenured coach in the NFL, and if he can handle the mental incapacity's of PacMan and Vince Young, then winning a home game should be well within his grasp...



Denver Broncos (-11) @ Kansas City Chiefs

ESPN posed the question this week; "Which state has the worst professional football teams, Ohio or Missouri?". Well thanks in no small part to the man pictured above, I'd have to agree with 82% of the folks that voted, and say this one's a no brainer. While the Browns and the Bengals have looked just a touch better than complete ass so far in '08, the QB-less Chiefs and the bumbling Rams make the two squads from the Buckeye State look like Joe Montana and the late 80's Niners. And that's enough for me. Whether they're starting Tyler Thigpen, Damon Huard or freaking Len Dawson, I'm taking the Broncos, and I'm taking them in a big way. I know Arrowhead can be a tough place to play, but with KC smack dab in the middle of some whacked-out rebuilding project, I'll take the visiting team every day of the week, and twice on Sunday. Ha!...


New Orleans Saints (-3) vs San Fransisco 49ers

I look at this game, and see a team that's probably a little better than their record, and a team that's probably arriving just a tad too soon. The Saints are 1-2 after a heart breaking road loss to the Broncos. And while the Niners are a slightly surprising 2-1, their 2 wins (@ Seattle in OT and VS Detroit) don't exactly instill a shat-load of confidence. Reggie Bush has started to show his true worth with 487 total yards and 4 touchdowns, and even though the Saints continue to battle injuries on both sides of the ball, they're offense should be good enough to power through San Fran. Not to say the Niners aren't any good, but in what figures to be a shoot out, I'll take the team that that's score 78 points on the year, over the squad that's managed just a measly 77. Ha! again!...



Jacksonville Jaguars (-7) vs Houston Texans

Jacksonville is coming off a big win against Indy @ Lucas Oil Field last weekend, but more than just a W, I think that victory helped get this team back on the right track. After losses @ Tennessee and at home against the Bills to start the season, the Jags scored a big win vs the division rival Colts by doing what they do best. Imposing their will, and running the bean. After rushing for just 97 yards on 35 carries over the first two games (2.77 yards per carry), the bruising tandem of Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew exploded against Indy, more than doubling their season output to that point with a very impressive 228 yards on just 45 carries (5.06). I like what the win @ Indy must have done for their confidence, and I like how their o-line rebounded to dominate in the run game. Besides, the Texans still have to be in a wacky head space after Hurricane Ike. That, combined with the fact they haven't actually been playing that well gives me more than enough to take the Jags at home by more than a touchdown...


Cleveland Browns (+4) @ Cincinnati Bengals

So. If the Chiefs have the Show Me State on lockdown, that leaves just one question. Who's the worst team in the state of Ohio? Answer? It's the Bengals. Just don't say it to their faces, or they might get wasted and piss all over you. Or if you're a woman, they might beat you. Lucky for the Browns, Cincy doesn't seem to ever take their anger out on opposing defenses...

...on a side note, this is what the state of Ohio gets for shadily bordering West Virginia, and not letting anyone know about it. Freaking inbreeders by association...



Oakland Raiders (+8) vs San Diego Chargers

I've never been one to quit on a winning strategy, so San Diego or no San Diego I'm stickin' with my main man Lane Kiffin. Not only is he still in limbo about the status of his j-o-b, but now Al "the Crypt Keeper" Davis is messin' with his personal life. Kiffin says his wife is pissed that she's been having to ward off realtors that think they're headed out of town, and that the distinct possibility of him losing his position is beginning to take it's toll on her sanity. Well! That's all I need! Hope you weren't looking for an actual breakdown, because that's my logic behind taking this game. The more dysfunctional this situation gets, the more I like the Raiders. That is until Kiffin gets the boot. In which case I will begin to cry, and search for other quirky gimmicks to plug into my picks each week...



Buffalo Bills (-10) @ St. Louis Rams

You saw what I wrote about the Chiefs, right? Well the Rams are worse. They can't run, they can't pass, they suck on D. I mean if I weren't forced to believe it, I'd have trouble believing they were a pro football team at all for crying out loud! So this one's easy. I'm taking the Bills. It's a big spread for a road team, I know. But that's just how sucky I think the RAms actually are. Scott Linehan: Making Lane Kiffen look like Jef Fisher since 2008...


And here are the rest of my picks for the week. I like Favre and Warner to bust the over with a shootout-type performance. And I like the Bears and the Skins to slow things down, and keep their respective games closer than the spread may suggest. Take a look...


New York Jets (pick) vs Arizona Cardinals

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+4) vs Green Bay Packers

Carolina Panthers (-4.5) vs Atlanta Falcons

Washington Redkskin (+7) @ Dallas Cowboys

Chicago Bears (+7) @ Philadelphia Eagles

...Oh, and if I get another email this week from someone telling me they "read my picks, but need to know who to pick in the Chicago game", then I'm gonna ralph down their throat. I pick every game, people! If you read my shit, and don't know who I picked, then you have one of two major issues. You're either lying, or you're a tard. Either way, I suggest you have that issue checked out. Or you might wake on on Monday having to clear some of my vomit out of your throat. Hope you like hot dogs!...


Monday Night


Pittsburgh Steelers (-1.5) vs Baltimore Ravens

They could be the death of me, but I pretty much refuse to pick the Ravens unless they somehow are at home against the Chiefs or Rams. I can't remember if those games are actually going to happen or not, but more or less I'm just refusing to acknowledge that this team is even the least bit relevant when it comes to the AFC power structure conversation...

I still hate the Steelers, mind you. It's just that I hate being wrong a helluva lot more. And even though head coach Mike Tomlin looks like he should be slangin' cell phones at the mall, and Willie Parker will be watching from the bench, I'm still pickin' Pittsburgh to roll big on MNF...


Last Week: 9-7-0 (Top Picks: 4-3-0)

Overall: 25-22-0 (.532)

Top Picks: 9-4-0 (.692)


Staying on the "sticking with a good strategy" tip, that's exactly what I plan to do this week with my NCAA picks. Last week, I was smart, and took a lot of home underdogs, and that helped propel me to a 15-3 week. So this week, I'm doin' that again, along with another healthy dose of underdogs that I think will make a pretty good game of it. Like I said last week. Home teams do well, and the games are usually closer than you'd think...

Some games of note this week. I like NC State to pull another upset cover for me. I'm picking against Clemson because I don't think I've ever won picking with them. I like Michigan, Florida and Auburn all to pull off big conference wins. And I'm a big fan of doing Fresno St. just like Toledo did last week with the exact same point spread. Rick Neuheisel and the his Bruins are due for a big time game, and even though no logic tells me they should pull this one off, I gotta make 'em my pick. They're at home, they're getting points, and it's the last chance I'm gonna have to say anything nice about the Bruins for the next 6 months...


NCAA Top 25 Picks
(2) Oklahoma (-17) vs (24) TCU

(8) Alabama (+8) @ (3) Georgia

(4) Florida (-22.5) vs Mississippi

(5) LSU (-24) vs Mississippi St.

(7) Texas (-27.5) vs Arkansas

Michigan (+6) vs (9) Wisconsin

(22) Illinois (+14.5) @ (12) Penn St.

NC State (+8.5) vs (13) South Florida

(14) Ohio St. (-18) vs Minnesota

(15) Auburn (6.5) vs Tennessee

(16) Wake Forest (-16) vs Navy

(17) Utah (OFF) vs Weber St.

Maryland (+11) @ (20) Clemson

(23) East Carolina (-10.5) vs Houston

UCLA (+6.5) vs (25) Fresno St.

Last Week: 15-3-0

Overall: 47-26-2 (.640)


Bam! Good luck kids, but I'm out of time. Check me out next week and I'll have a a full breakdown of the playoffs, and a full recap of this week's NFL action...

...and a few racial slurs, dirty puns, and possibly even a video involving several girls, yet only a single cup...

Gross, just kidding...

Or am I?...Guess you'll have to come back and check it out...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Phinished?


It's gotta be 3, 4 o'clock in the morning. You've been up drinking since early afternoon, and at this point, the only thing keeping you up, is the boisterous promise you made when the day was much younger. You said you only stop drinking when it became humanly impossible to do so...


You take one more swig from that night's brown liquor of choice, hoping that it will close the chapter on the night's heroic events. And that's when it happens. That's when it starts to creep up on you...


It's that taste. The unmistakable burn. It's that days worth of wings, fries, cigarettes and the all important booze, making it's comeback. But it's not when you throw up, that's not what I'm talking about. It's that first pulse, that first push upward. You can swallow it down if you really try, but the damage has already been done. The bile, the half processed food, and all that delicious booze, it's sent the message that it's gonna come back up. And the signal of it's arrival, is that acidic burn that brings you to your knees, and tells you that you will never again put your body through this kind of internal anguish...





The burn. It's a feeling I knew all too well throughout college, and it's a pain that revisited me on Sunday as I sat and watch the machine like deconstruction of my Patriots at the hands of the lowly Miami Dolphins...


And why did it happen? Why did fans across New England get the feeling out hot dog chunks and battery acid moving up their esophagus? Well for the first time in what seems like forever, it was blatantly obvious that Bill Belichick and the Patriot coaching staff were simply out-coached. It wasn't Matt Cassel, it wasn't the Special Teams, and while the defense gave up a ton of points and suffered from suspect tackling, it was the staff's inability to adjust to the Dolphins' "Wild Hog" offensive set that was the main cause of one of the most shocking upsets in recent AFC East history. Belichick and his assistants were unable to adjust to the typically college run offense, and instead of business as usual, Bill and his staff are now left to ponder whether or not their team is as good as was once thought...


The answer to that question? Well for the first time in a long time, I'll actually have to plead ignorance. I don't think that defense is as bad as it showed on Sunday, but I do think that the inability of this team to mount any sort of comeback is rather disconcerting. Granted, I would have only given a Brady-led team just a 50-50 shot of winning this week's game due to the lack of defense, but this effort proved that a grind-it-out game, where the Pats hold the lead, may be the only type of game that a Cassel-led squad is going to be able to win. Hopefully the bye week will be able to address a lot of those issues and get the team back on track, but the loss definitely sent a loud message to the rest of the league. Jump on the Patriots, and they don't have what it takes to come back...


So it's on to the bye week. Will Bill and friends bring in a QB over these next two weeks after Cassel's lack luster performance? Probably not. But it's whether the defense comes out in week 5 with a no holds barred mentality that will really signal to me that we may not have lost all connection with the Tom Brady Patriots that captured 3 Super Bowl titles over the past 7 seasons...



Tackle Box
While The Pats may have hit a stumbling block in week 3, the Dallas Cowboys used their showdown with the Packers to serve notice that now they are the team to beat in the National Football League. Their offense is out of this world, their defense is just good enough not to let things get out of hand, and Tony Romo is quickly emerging as the type of QB that will just refuse to let his team get in any sort of rut. Essentially, I'm just patting myself on the back for picking the Cowboys to make the Super Bowl before the season started. I mean, since I picked them to lose to the Pats, I figure I have to at least save face by getting half of my Super Bowl tandem into the big game...


The other undefeated teams left in the NFL? Well it's just the Tennessee Titans, and these 3 other flunkies...




Baltimore Ravens: I know I picked the Ravens to be historically bad this year, but I seem to be the only one that is wetting themselves over their surprising 2-0 start. They still have a solid defense, but QB Joe Flacco's 57.7 rating, combined with the fact that they've only beaten Cleveland and Cincy (combined 0-4), doesn't bode well for their future. This week's matchup @ Pittsburgh should go a long way towards convincing me that this team's legit, or more than likely reassuring me that they're just as garbage as I originally thought they were...




Denver Broncos: On the surface, the Broncos look really good. They have the QB with the big arm, the stud receiver, the surprising rookie in Eddie Royal, and a head coach with oodles of experience. But look a bit deeper, and you'll see that while they're still very talented, their 3-0 record is a bit misleading. They had the refs hand them the game against San Diego, a missed FG saved them against the Saints, and their only road win came against a banged up Oakland Raider squad. And even more deceiving, is that before a week 7 showdown @ New England, Denver will only have to muddle through games @ KC, vs Tampa and vs Jacksonville. A 2-1 stretch there should do even less to tell us how good this team is. But hey, at least Brandon Marshall's arrest reports should keep us entertained in the meantime...




Buffalo Bills: You know what? The Bills aren't frauds after all. They may not have a defense as solid as Tennessee's, or an offense as good as the Cowboys. But they meet in the middle just enough on both sides of the ball to make them a major nuisance for the Patriots in their quest for another AFC East crown. And while nearly falling to the Raiders at home isn't going to do much to instill confidence, it's NOT losing those games that makes the difference between a team that goes 7-9, and a team that goes 9-7 and is right in the mix for a playoff berth...



Now it's time to review my picks from week 3. I've continued to dig myself out of the hole I built in week 1, but I'm still in search of that monstrous week that will help push me way over the top...
...Oh and I'd like to thank Lane Kiffin for doing his part and getting his Raiders to cover for me. It's just a damn shame that it probably won't be enough for him to keep his job, and for me to keep my winning "piss off Al Davis" strategy alive and kickin...


My Picks
Last Week: 9-7-0 (Top Picks: 4-3-0)


Overall: 25-22-0 (.532)

Top Picks: 9-4-0 (.692)


As for my college picks, well I got that aforementioned montrous week that I'm still looking for in the NFL. 15-3, man. Rake in the cakes baby. Rake in the cakes...


NCAA Top 25 Picks
Last Week: 15-3-0

Overall: 47-26-2 (.640)






Red Sox Update
Overall: 91-65, 2.5 games back in AL East, lead Yankees in Wild Card by 6


Leave it to the Patriots. Their penchant for making early season headlines has all but pushed the Red Sox to the back pages, and all but pushed their playoff clinching win on Sunday onto the proverbial back burner. And while the Sox have slipped a bit and allowed Tampa to take control of the division, their strangle on the Wild Card makes them all but a shoe-in for a post season spot. Some major concerns moving forward continue to be the health of JD Drew (shocker) and Mike Lowell, but I think the reemergence of Josh Beckett has to be a major source of inspiration. He may not have looked too stellar giving up 4 over 6 in his latest loss to Cleveland, but his 2.16 ERA over his last 4 starts overall has me confident he can again anchor this staf through a long post season run. For once, pitching doesn't seem to be the issue as we head for October. My worry, is that the offense, which has only averaged 2.8 runs over the past 6 games, won't have enough firepower to overcome the few nights to come where the pitching staff is going to need the big sticks to bail them out...






News and Notes


The doors closed for the last time on Yankee Stadium on Sunday night, and with them, go any semblance that was left of the once mighty Yankee dynasty. They haven't won a World Series since the turn of the century, their lineup is getting old, and they face a big time off season with the fate of their GM still very much hanging in the balance. They did put on a good show, though, when it came to closing out The Stadium. I just think they may have been putting an end to more than they had bargained for...


...oh, and the Mets are sliding again. So the Yankees have that going for them, which is nice...



The American's may have taken back the Ryder Cup, and Boo Weekley may have ridden around on his driver like Happy Gilmore, but for this guy, the whole thing didn't have the same luster without my main man, Tiger Woods. I get it. It's supposed to be a "team" event, and I'm supposed to cheer for my country. But that's not my style. And I think it's not so much the way I think, but the way the Americans think to boot. We run the best tour on the planet, yet we only win the Ryder Cup when our best player isn't on the course. To me, that sends an obvious signal. In a country where winning is "everything", it took the absence of Tiger Woods to give the US side that underdog mentality, and finally a reason to play and win as a team. The Europeans never seem to need a reason to play like a team, and when they finally came up against a team with similar, the talent rose to the top and they found themselves on the outside looking in...



Fantasy Update
Last Week: Hanyur's HamFighers 84 Heinous Montegna 78

Overall: 2-1-0, 5th place


Next Week vs FUCK BOSTON (1-2-0)


Living and dying by the sword is if nothing else a very entertaining strategy. Though Reggie Wayne, Patrick Crayton and Kellen Winslow left me high and dry during play on Sunday, it was none other than Brett Favre himself that helped bail me out, and lead me to a week 3 win behind his monstrous Monday night. It was a beautiful thing, my friends, and it puts me right back in the running. When you're 1-1, there's a big difference between 1-2 and 2-1. I managed to survive and leap over that first hurdle, and not a week two soon as a week 4 showdown with the league's 2nd highest scoring team looms on the horizon. The bad news is I'm going up against a pretty good squad. The good news is that after this week, I now have a fearless mentality, and the confidence to believe that when it comes to my Brett Favre led team, anything is possible...


Well I'm out, kids. But come back Friday for a fresh batch of my football picks, and make sure to encourage your friends to visit as well. It won't improve your health, and it certainly won't help your credit score. But it's sure to keep you informed, and possibly a little entertained. And those are never bad things, at least from where this guy sits...

Peace in the Middle...

Friday, September 19, 2008

NFL Week 3 Picks

If you've looked at the games this weekend in the NFL, and you aren't pumped. Well, then I just don't know what I can do for ya. There's a full slate of big time match ups this weekend, and thanks to yours truly, you're about to know exactly where to put your money in order to maximize both your financial gain, and your entertainment experience. Check it out...


Week 3 Picks
New England Patriots (-12.5) vs Miami Dolphins

Joey Porter and Curt Schilling. Two of the most legendary gum-bumpers of our time. So it's only appropriate that on the same day Curt unleashed his pent up hate against Manny Ramirez (http://www.projo.com/redsox/content/projo_20080918_curt_schilling.8a0e1417.html), Porter ran his mouth and guaranteed victory for his 0-2 Phins against the Tom Brady-less New England Patriots. And while Manny won't likely have a coherent response to Red Light's latest barbs, safety Rodney Harrison has already labeled the boisterous linebackers pre-emptive smack as, "Joey being Joey". And that's just what it is. Porter's always been one to make guarantees and call out opponents, but it's a little different when you're playing for the lowly Dolphins, as opposed to a contender like the Pittsburgh Steelers. But hey, what does the guy have to lose, right? He's team's lost 20 of their last 21 regular season games, and they're playing a squad that's run off 22 straight, and has been installed as nearly a 2 touchdown favorite. It's a win-win for him. They happen to pull the upset, and he's a genius. They lose, and it's just another week. The Patriots move on, and we forget about the declining blabbermouth until be decides to call someone else out a few weeks down the road.

As for the play on the field, I see this game serving as yet another chance for Matt Cassel to build some confidence. The Pats should able to control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. The running game will give him time to pass and give his WRs separation, while the defensive pressure will give him plenty of possessions to work with, and could even put a few points on the board for extra cushion...

Are the Patriots back? Not in every sense of the word. But they proved to me last week they're still plenty good enough to beat up on the worst team in the division. And the Dolphins are the current gold standard of NFL sucking...


Oakland Raiders (+9.5) @ Buffalo Bills

So after hearing Lane Kiffin say he hadn't talked to Oakland owner, Al Davis, in two weeks, I decided to make the Raiders my new squad. As long as they keep winnin', and as long as Davis keeps stewing in his bitter hatred for Kiffin, I'm gonna keep pickin' 'em, week after week. Why? Because I think it's freaking hysterical! Al Davis, the legendary control freak, and he seemingly has no control over his team. And why? For what? Because he suddenly changed his mind about the guy he hired to run his team? I mean is this guy nutty, or what? And does he really think that by threatening to destroy Kiffin's career, he's gonna convince the coach to sign Davis' letter of resignation and walk away from a guaranteed $2 mil? I mean, come on...



What he should do, is one of two things. Either fire him and be done with it. OR Just let him do his thing for the rest of this season, and figure out what you really want at the end of the year. At best this team was goin' 8-8 this year anyway, so even if you hate the guy, bringing in who you really want probably won't make too much of a difference...


But, seeing as Davis doesn't operate that way, then this drama is likely to continue. Kiffin will hang by a thread week after week, until the Raiders finally lose. And since I want this freak show to continue, I'm gonna take Oakland every week until they finally lose, and Kiffin gets the axe. See to me, it's like watching "Christopher Walken starring in a Woody Allen remake of Tales From the Crypt". And for the life of me, I just don't want it to go away...

Oh, and for the record, I know the Bills are the better team. It's just that considering the the strategy I'm putting into effect this week with the Raiders, who the "better team" actually is becomes rather irrelevant...




Philadelphia Eagles (-3) vs Pittsburgh Steelers

To be blunt, I see the Steelers as a boot leg version of the Cowboys, so I'm taking the Eagles. I like the way Philly matches up in the secondary with the Pittsburgh wide outs. I like the fact that Big Ben's shoulder is a little dinged up. And I like the fact that an explosive Eagle passing attack is finally getting Reggie Brown back in the fold after a pre season hamstring injury. Granted he's no TO or anything like that, but you gotta like his chances of actually holding onto the ball before crossing the goal line, unlike rookie show-boater DeSean Jackson. And take a look at that play he made in high school. One time is acceptable, I guess. But two times? (video) Well that's a trend, folks. And while it may be entertaining, it's antics like those that will give fans, coaches and fantasy owners plenty of ulcers, and reasons to hate...

The only thing that really bother me in this one is the A-Rodian tendencies of Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb. They're money for the 1st 3 1/2 quarters, and then all of a sudden they lose it. Maybe it's the pressure just getting to them. But I'd prefer to think it's the fact that they're dippin' a little too much into the Reid brothers extensive pharmaceutical department. Hey, I'm all for meth. Just leave it to washed up child actors, porn stars and truck drivers...

Green Bay Packers (+3) vs Dallas Cowboys

On paper, this figures to be a virtual recap of last week's Dallas and Philly Monday Night track meet. Both offenses ooze with delicious weapons in the both the passing and running game, and both defenses are based on hyper aggression. And just like in the Dallas/Philly game, I see this one being a high scoring, back and forth game that goes down to the wire...


I don't like the early turn around for the Cowboys after such a big game on Monday Night, and I like the fact that Green Bay is getting points. Rodgers will continue to roll, I'm takin' the Pack...

Tennessee Titans (-5) vs Houston Texans

I was high on the Texans before the season began, but this whole Hurricane Ike situation isn't sitting well with me. When your family is living in a shelter and your house is floating down what used to be Main St., football can't possibly be the first thing on your mind. And while I respect those priorities, I just can't bring myself to pick them to cover any sort of spread at all. I'll put my money on the NFL's 2nd best defense instead, and hope that Kerry Collins continues to do enough not to screw shit up..



San Fransisco 49ers (-4) vs Detroit Lions

If anyone knows the Lions, it's Mike Martz. He helped build the current team, as seeing as he did a shitty job at it, he should have no trouble carving it up with his latest version of the greatest show on turf. Besides, I just traded JT O'Sullivan in my fantasy league, so you know he's bound to have a huge game. My only worry for the 9ers, is that they've given up 8 sacks in their first two games. But a heavy does of Frank Gore in the 1st half should open the play action, and give the surprising mobile O'Sullivan a chance to find some open targets. Detroit will be 0-3, and we can officially start like the 10th annual discussion of how embarrassing GM Matt Millen is to the game of football. Oooo, I love the holidays!...






New York Giants (-13.5) vs Cincinnati Bengals

Logic tells me the Bengals aren't this bad, but until they actually show up for a game in '08, I'm gonna be picking against them on a fairly regular basis. They're defense is a mess, and from a fantasy standpoint, the unthinkable has happened. In recent years, guys like TJ Whosyourmomma, Ocho Cinco, and Carons Palmer were all guys you'd love to have on your team. Now, I'd sooner bet on the fact that head coach Marvin Lewis is gonna get canned, rather than even suggest that this team has any chance in Hell of covering a spread...

And let's not let the ineptitude of the Bengals distract from the fact that the Giants have begun their '08 title defense in rather impressive fashion. The defense has recovered nicely from the loss of Strahan, Umenyiora and Kawika Mitchell, and Eli has come out of the gate showing the confidence that propelled the middle of the road G-Men to one of the biggest Super Bowl upsets in modern football history. It also doesn't hurt that they covered a similar spread last week against the lowly Rams, who at this point, are just Missouri's version of the struggling Bungles...


And here's the rest of my week 2 picks. I like Gus "You Rot" Frerotte to light it up and cool down the Panthers. I know Steve Smith is back from his two game suspension, but I;m just not ready to admit that we live in a world where the Carolina Panthers are 3-0...

I like the Browns to finally show up, and show the world how bad the Ravens really are. Romeo Crennel is feelin' the heat, and after two tough home games, I like Derek Anderson and that potent offense to finally start to score...



As for the Falcons and the Chiefs? Let me put it this way. I have so little faith in KC starter and Coastal Carolina alum, Tyler Thigpen, that I actually picked up the Falcons Defense just for this week 3 match up. And in a week where Bobby Thigpen's single season save record has already been broken, I can't say I like the chances with a QB that shares his namesake...


One game I advise you stay away from all together is the NFC West showdown between St. Louis and Seattle. Neither team has shown they're any good, the point spread is huge and I never like my chances betting for or against any team who has a coach on the hot seat. Well, that is unless his name happens to be Lane Kiffin...



Atlanta Falcons (-5) vs Kansas City Chiefs

Chicago Bears (-3) vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Denver Broncos vs New Orleans Saints OVER 51

Indianapolis Colts (-5) vs Jacksonville Jaguars

Washington Redskins (-3) vs Arizona Cardinals

Minnesota Vikings (-3) vs Carolina Panthers

Cleveland Browns (+3) @ Baltimore Ravens

Seattle Seahawks (-9) vs St. Louis Rams


Monday Night
New York Jets (+9) @ San Diego Chargers

Am I taking the Jets because I have Brett Favre and Jerricho Cotchery on my fantasy team? You bet your sweet ass I am. At least partly. Fact is, while I've been outspoken in my disgust with Brett Favre's antics over the past few seasons, he's a beast under the National spotlight that is Monday Night Football. The only question, is whether Eric Mangini will let Brett Favre be Brett Favre, or if he'll continue to force the veteran to play a run-first, grind it out style...





And I for one am gonna take a lot of stock in how Mangini attacks the Chargers D. Last week in New England, instead of attacking the Patriot secondary with Favre's rocket arm, the Jets instead pounded the ball with Thomas Jones. That fed right into the strength of the Patriot defense, allowed them to control tempo, and thus gave them the upper hand and the 9 point victory. I think it's very simple, but Mangini has to understand. The only way the Jets can win with Favre, is if they let him be Favre! From my understanding, you got this guy for the potentially monstrous risk/reward potential, correct? So why not let him do this thing?!..


I'll have faith in the "Man-Genius" on this one and bet he turns Brett loose. He has to realize now that it's his teams best chance to win, and that strategy should at the very least keep them within a touchdown in this tough road battle...


Oh and watch out for Darren Sproles. Monday Night? And with LT a little gimpy? You just know that slippery little midget is gonna pull some shit and take one to the house...


Last Week: 8-6-0 (Top Picks: 5-1-0)

Overall: 16-15-0 (.516)


For my college picks this week, I've gone to a very simple strategy to avoid hitting any sort of major slide. I went a little nutty last week, and ended up at .500, but this week I'm trying to take the smart money and put together a solid performance. For instance, I'm going with home dogs NC State, Toledo, Air Force and even picking Auburn in their SEC uber-showdown with #6 LSU. I figure, it's college football. Home teams rule. And even when they don't win, the underdogs always seem to make the games closer than they should be...

NCAA Top 25 Picks
(3) Georgia (-7) @ Arizona St.

(4) Florida (-7.5) @ Tennessee

(5) Missouri (-34) vs Buffalo

(10) Auburn (+2.5) vs LSU

(7) Texas (-29) vs Rice

(9) Alabama (-9.5) @ Arkansas

(11) Texas Tech (OFF) vs UMASS

(12) South Florida (-28.5) @ Florida International

(13) Ohio St. (-20.5) vs Troy

(14) BYU (-28.5) vs Wyoming

NC State (+7.5) vs (15) East Carolina

(16) Penn St. (-28.5) vs Temple

Boise St. (+10.5) @ (17) Oregon

(18) Wake Forest (+4) @ (24) Florida St.

(19) Kansas (OFF) vs Sam Houston St.

Air Force (+8) vs (20) Utah

(23) Clemson (OFF) vs South Carolina St.

Toldeo (+7) vs (25) Fresno St.

*OFF means that the team I didn't pick is so bad, that Vegas won't even let you take the better team with any sort of point spread. Like UMASS. They're beat...


Last Week: 8-8-1

Overall: 32-23-2 (.586)


Well, there you have it. I've laid out the games this week, targeted the ones that will help you rake in the cakes, and the rest is up to you...


I hope everyone has an enjoyable weekend, and if you see me in the streets...well, then holler. Cuz from what I've been told, that's the protocol for players, when you actually do see them in the streets...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Broadyway Brett Not Ready for Prime Time...

Well greetings and salutations my good people. There were some big games this weekend, so instead of boring you with my lame attempts at humor and banter, I'll just get right down to brass tacks. Check it out..


Patriots Update
Last Week: New England Patriots 19 New York Jets 10
Overall: 2-0

Naturally, whether the Pats won or lost on Sunday, the story of the game was going to be the performance of Patriots QB Matt Cassel. A lot had been made of him having not started a game since he was poppin' zits and taking driver's ed, and a whole nation full of football fans waited with baited breath to see if he would single-handedly doom the Pats entire season. Well he didn't doom the Pats, and not to take anything away from his performance, but this man's opinion is that Mangini and the Jets let the inexperienced signal caller off the hook. They didn't bring a lot of pressure, they didn't use any extravagant schemes, and on offense, they didn't do anything to put him in a position where he truly needed to put up some points. Granted the Patriots D was very good, and I'll get to that in a minute, but as I watched the game it just boggled my mind that the Jets were content to let Cassel sit back and manage the game in a very Brady circa 2001 type fashion...

But enough about the failings of the Jets, let's talk about the surprising performance by the entire Patriots team. On special teams, Stephen Gostkowski came through, not only nailing all 4 of his FG tries, but also kicking 5 kickoffs through the endzone, and never allowing the Jets to get past the 20 on any of his 6 kickoffs. It would also be remiss for me not to mention Chris Hanson, who took a break from catching petafiles and/or smoking buds at "the condo" and delivered some clutch punts to help the Pats win the all important battle of field position. But those two guys aside, and keeping in mind that I felt Cassel's performance was merely adequate, the real difference makers in this one were LaMont Jordan and the Patriot defense...

Jordan was easily the Pats most effective rusher. He had 11 carries for 62 yards and provided the only pop in a running attack that saw Maroney and Morris muster just 16 yards on 16 carries. I said when he was added to the roster that he was almost a hybrid between Morris and Faulk, and his aggressive running style was on full display against his old team. He's fast, he's strong, and he hits holes hard. The only question now, is will he get enough carries to really make a difference. My guess is it will still be very much a running back by committee situation, but if Jordan sees an increased role, I think it would make the offense all that more dangerous. Not to mention help take even more pressure of Matt Cassel..

On defense, the players that really stood out to me were Richard Seymour, Brendan Merriweather, Ellis Hobbs and Jerod Mayo. While I still think a lot of the Pats defensive success was based on the Jets vanilla approach, these guys in particular stood out as difference makers that helped hold the Jetropolitans to just 1 touchdown and 10 total points. Merriweather seemed to debunk the myth that he has stone hands with his nice pick on Favre. Hobbs shut down Coles, even though Favre hardly ever looks his way. Mayo was arguably the surest tackler New England had on the field. And "Big Sey" finally did some damage the fans could recognize, picking up his first sack of the season not to mention consistently ending up in the New York backfield...

All in all, the defensive performance was a reminder to guys like me, who picked the Jets, that even though Brady may be down, this defense is still elite enough to carry this team to a lot of the places they had planned on going. Will it be enough to bring them to another Super Bowl appearance? I still say no. But with Cassell facing Miami, San Fran and a bye week over the next 3, he'll have plenty of time to learn on the job as the Pats head into their real meaningful games, and start to become the team they will ultimately be...


Tackle Box
-What a bizarre game between the Chargers and Broncos. Sure the performances turned in by Jay Cutler (350 yards + 4 TDs), Brandon Marshall (18 grabs for 166 yards) and Darren Sproles (317 all purpose yards) were mighty impressive, but all anyone is going to want to talk about is the two controversial calls that decided the game...

First up, was the "incomplete pass" that was called by referee Ed Hochuli. Anyone watching the game could tell it was a fumble. Cutler himself acted after the play as if it were a fumble. And after the game, even Hochuli himself admitted he got the call wrong. The real problem? Not the call on the field, but the rule itself. It says that when a play is reviewed, there needs to be indisputable evidence to reverse the call that was made on the field. There in lies the issue. If such a bogus call is made on the field, like in this case when the ball was blown dead, there's no way a replay can take that fact away. Solution? Well, for starters, don't blow your whistle. Remember how when replay came into effect all of a sudden every loose ball was a fumble? Sure at first it seemed a little silly, but it's better than the alternative of the whistle blowing and the play being impossible to overturn. In this instance, despite the fact that replay would clearly show the play as a fumble, an inadvertent whistle spelled the end of the play, and in essence, the end of the game for the San Diego Chargers...

Simply put, in a world where replay exists, whistles should not. And thanks to this latest officiating blunder, you gotta think we're well on our way to living in that very place...

The 2nd call, was the decision by Mike Shanahan to go for 2 at the end of the game with his team only trailing by 1. It was only the 4th time since the 2 point conversion was introduced in 1994 that a team pulled such a feat with 2 minutes or less to go in the game, and I doubt anyone else will be trying it in the near future. Was it because his team had blown a huge lead? OR, by some act of God, was he actually trying to give San Diego a chance because he thought they got robbed? I highly doubt it was the latter, but whatever the reason, the guy's got balls the size of watermelons. In a division game, at home, he took a huge gamble and may have actually given his team a decisive win in what could turn out to be a nip and tuck battle for the AFC Western division title...

-An equally impressive performance by a young QB this week was that of Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers. I was in the minority when the season began, thinking that the young Packers wouldn't miss a beat with him at the helm, and with each passing week I'm looking brighter and brighter. The kid was a ton of weapons at his disposal, and as long as he can keep his turnovers to a bare minimum, this offense is gonna be tough to beat. And imagine this, with a power running game in place with Ryan Grant and Brandon Jackson, and a fierce passing attack led by James Jones, Donald Driver and Greg Jennings, the only thing this team is lacking is a Kevin Faulk type do-it-all back. If they could possibly add a guy like that to the mix, or find a guy like that hidden somewhere on their roster, then we could be looking at yet another dangerous offense in the NFC. Who'd a thunk it?...

With two weeks in the books, here are just a few quick notes on some teams that have surprised me...both the good and the bad...

Jacksonville Jaguars: How important is it to have a good offensive line? Just ask Jack Del Rio, Fred Taylor, David Garrard and Maurice Jones Drew. Through 2 games, the Jags have managed just 3 yards per rush and allowed a mind boggling 9 sacks. Yeah, I'd say that's a pretty sure fire way to guarantee you start the season 0-2...

Buffalo Bills: We all knew the defense would be solid and the special team immaculate, but it's the Buffalo offense that has really impressed through the first two weeks of the season. If Marshawn Lynch can stay out of night clubs, and Trent Edwards can keep completing passes at a 71% clip, then this team's going to be even more dangerous than the possible playoff threat I had them pegged to be when the season began...

Carolina Panthers: 2-0? Really? Well just like with the Jags, you can almost single-handedly thank the offensive line. Jack Delhomme has only been sacked 4 times, and DeAngelo Williams and rookie Jonathan Stewart have carried the bean 53 times for a very impressive 247 yards. That's 4.6 yards per carry for those of you that are mathematically impaired, but more importantly it's a sure fire way to make sure you have a chance to win a lot of games. I'd be a little weary that their defense isn't causing any turnovers (0 INTs), but when your offense has only given the ball away twice in two games, it's not the worst problem in the world to have...

Indianapolis Colts: I'm not sure what I would have to say today had the Vikings held on and beat the Colts, but Indy fans have got to be scratching their heads. I'm still gonna play the "chemistry" card when it comes to Peyton and the Indy offense, but if they can't get some of those guys along their o-line back on the field (Ugoh, Saturday) then this alleged short term problem could quickly turn into a season altering situation...

Cleveland Browns: I know it's early, but if you're Romeo Crennel you have to think your job's in jeopardy right now, don't you? Their schedule has been brutal, with opening games against Dallas and Pittsburgh, but if this Cleveland team was even half as good as many of us thought, they should have at least gone 1-1. I mean, come on. You drop your first two home games to open the season, and you're not the Miami Dolphins, then you have to expect that people are gonna be pissed. Oh, and 6 drops in 2 games by Braylon Edwards isn't exactly doing the Cleveland offense any favors...

Arizona Cardinals: Still a gimmick team, and I won't be impressed until they beat somebody defense. Call me cynical, but that's just the way I see it. Besides, you're kidding yourself if you say you follow this squad for any reason other than fantasy football anyway...

I was able to clean up my act this week, and actually got some picks right. And seeing as I did so well on my "picks of the week", I've decided to chronicle those picks right along with the rest of my predictions. As for my college picks, well let's just say I've been doing as well with those as I did with actual college...


NFL Picks
Last Week:
9-6-0

My Top Picks: 5-1-0

Overall: 16-15-0 (.516)

NCAA Top 25 Picks
Last Week: 8-8-1

Overall: 33-23-2 (.586)

So now that we got that football biz out of the way, it's time for a little slice of the National past time. After all, the Sox are back in 1st, and with Tom Brady down, they actually might be worth watching!...

Red Sox Update
Overall: 89-61, 1st place tie (.002 % behind Tampa)

Another week, and another series with the Rays. This one got off in stellar fashion last night, as the Sox used 6 homers to top Kazmir at the Trop. The win gives the Sox their first W at Tropicana Field all season, shows the upstart Rays they aren't scared of their ace, and most importantly, puts them in a virtual tie for 1st. These are all good things. After all, winning the division means they avoid the Angels on the road in the 1st round, I think we can all agree that's the prime objective at this point...

I'll have more on Friday with my NFL picks, but seeing as we're right in the middle of this series with Tampa, and so much is likely to change in the next few days, I consider it a little counter productive to even try and evaluate the situation as it is right now...


News and Notes
-Love the game, but hate the business. A saying that could be used by almost any fan for any sport, but that in this case I use to describe Los Angeles Angels closer Fransisco "K-Rod" Rodriguez. The guy isn't a week removed from setting the single season saves record (58), and the campaign has already begun to help bring down his price in free agency. I've started hearing shit like "his stuff isn't as good as it was", or "this is just a result of all the close games the Angels play", and it all just makes me sick. Love him til it's time to pay 'em, huh? It's a pretty gross business. And while rare, it's times like these that I actually hope a guy like this can go out and score himself a big pay day...

-Hate the game, but mock the douchebags that participate in it. In this case, I'm obviously talking about Lance Armostrong, Roid Landis, and the Tour de France. Simply put, they're both tools, and they're both coming back for the '09 Tour. One was busted for drugs, and one used drugs to beat cancer, and then beat down a bunch of unsuspecting Eurotrash. So why do I even bother keep bringing this mess up? Well I think it's pretty obvious. I get to use the term "Roid Landis" and Eurotrash, and I get to take subtle cheap shots at Lance and how I still believe to this day that the guy juiced himself up to win the 20 Tour's he's captured in the last decade or so. Hey, I'm a hater, what can I say...

-Carlos Zambrano threw the 1st no hitter at a neutral site since 1900, and it's not sitting all that well with Houston Astro's manager, Cecil Cooper. The manager was less than pleased with the fact that his Stros, displaced by Hurricane Ike, had to play what was supposed to be a home game in Milwaukee, a mere 45 minutes from Chicago. I say Cecil should keep his yap shut and focus on 2 main points. 1) No matter where you're team was gonna have to play, I don't think managing one hit was too much to ask. And 2) The Astros currently sit at 80-69, 2 1/2 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers. And the Brewers just fired their manager, Ned Yost, right in the middle of a Wild Card run. So Cecil, thank your lucky stars you have a job, and more importantly, a job in a market that forgets you exist once football season has started...

-So I turn on the simulcast TV version of Mike and Mike in the Morning on Monday, in hopes of catching some info on the Monday Night Eagles/Cowboys game. Instead, I find Mike Greenberg talking about his button-up shirt, and calling himself the Kelly Ripa of sports talk radio. Now, I happen to think Kelly Ripa is the hottest MILF this side of Rachel Hunter, but I couldn't agree more with his statement. Much like Kelly, he's put on the air simply because he appeals to the masses. But unlike Kelly, his "fans" actually claim to be looking for insightful comments, but seem to settle for his social commentary on hair gel and reality TV. To be honest, what really bothers me is the fact that I think the guy is an embarrassment, yet he's on the top of a mountain that I hope one day I too will find myself perched. And while when that time comes I also hope I can appeal to a wide audience including housewives and teenie boppers, I only pray that I'll be able to do it without sacrificing every bit of credibility I have. And without alienating the same fans that helped catapult me to the top. And hey, if I get a nice piece of Kelly Ripa ass out of the deal, that wouldn't be the end of the world either...

Fantasy Update
Last Week: The Express 80 Hanyur's HamFighters 57
Overall: 1-1-0, 8th place

Next Week vs Heinous Montegna (1-1-0)

-Well if you're gonna live by the sword, then you're gonna die by the sword. You can't win 'em all. Sometimes your the windshield, and sometimes you're the bug. Whatever crappy analogy you want to use, you can apply it to my team this week. I built this machine to score a bunch of touchdowns, but with a lot of shitty match ups on the docket in week 2, it was just never meant to be. Oh, well. The good news is I've started working the trading block, and would have a few blockbuster's in the works by weeks end. Trading has always been my forte when it comes to fantasy sports, and I've always been of the impression that a team drafted "as-is", is never gonna be good enough to take down a title. Then again, I've always been better at robbing people through trades than I have been at drafting...


So with a stretch and a yawn, I'm done for the week. I hope you all enjoed what you read, as I took a lot of time out of my new beard itching schedule in order to make this happen. Sure it may not be full and lustrous quite yet, but it's mine goddamit, so repsect my sacrifices...Eh, on second thought, I'm probably gonna go shave right now anyway...

OK, just one more itch...

Friday, September 12, 2008

NFL Week 2 Picks


Well it's week 2, you gambling degenerates, and it's time to make some cakes. It's another full slate of games we have in front of us, and I've done my best to comb through and pick out the ones that are sure to make you a winner. I'm sure a lof of you are still bummed about Brady's busted knee, but nothin' can turn that frown upside down faster than a fist full of casheesh, right? So let's get down to bidness...


Week 2 Picks
Indianapolis Colts (-2) @ Minnesota Vikings

*A lot of people were on the Vikings bandwagon to start the season, but not me. I'm with the Colts. And that being the case, I find it hard to fathom that a team I picked to go 13-3 this year is gonna start the year 0-2. The Minnesota defense is good, and Adrian Peterson is a beast, but I just can't picture Peyton and Co. throwing together another stinker to go along with their opener against the Bears. Look for the Indy offense to throw a couple quick TDs on the board in the early going, throw the Viking defense back on their heels, and then shove Joseph Addai down their throats for the rest of the game...


Green Bay Packers (-2.5) @ Detroit Lions

*OK, so I know I just said taking road favorites is a quick way to go broke, but when the home team sucks, I tend to make exceptions. And in this case, not only do I think the home team sucks, but I happen to be one of the bigger fans of the road team, the Green Bay Packers. The Lions proved in week 1 against the Falcons that they're extremely vulnerable to the quick strike offense, and that's exactly what Green Bay brings to the table. Aaron Rodgers should have plenty of time to sit in the pocket and pick apart the Lion secondary, while the fast Packer D should be good enough to both get to Jon Kitna, and pose some problems for Lion wide outs Roy Williams and Calvin Johnson. I expect this game to be a shootout, but I just don't see any reasonable scenario that tells me Detroit will be able to keep pace...
...Oh yea. If Jon Kitna gets a concussion during the game and finds God again, then this pick is null and void. And he will be deemed as certifiably insane...


Cleveland Browns (+6.5) vs Pittsburgh Steelers

*Just like Indianapolis, I'm not buying that the Cleveland team I saw in week 1 is the one I'm gonna get from here on out. I don't think they're world beaters, and I never did, but getting nearly a touchdown at home is just too good to resist. Cleveland should be playing with a hint of desperation after being pushed around at home last week by the Cowboys, and I'm counting on that determination to help keep this game close. If pressed to pick a winner, I'd probably have to go with Big Ben and the Steelers, but since I think it's gonna be close, I have no choice but to go with the home team and the touchdown. Just like the Green Bay game, I expect this one to be a shootout. Remember last season when Carson Palmer and Derek Anderson duked it out and tossed 11 combined touchdowns? It won't be that extreme, but that's the type of game I think we're gonna see...


Denver Broncos (+1) vs San Diego Chargers

*In sports betting, the lines are made in order to create equal action for both teams, and aren't always indicative of what the outcome might be. That being said, of all the lines this week, this one confuses me the most. Denver is at home, they just kicked the shit out of Oakland to start the season, and the Chargers just lost Shawne Merriman, not to mention a heartbreaking home game to the Carolina Panthers. Now usually when a line doesn't make sense, it means Vegas knows something we don't, but in this instance, I'm gonna try and outsmart the odds makers. I'm sure they have some stats about Jay Cutler and the Broncos in-division at home that support this line, but I'm just gonna use the eye test. Besides, when I picked the games before the season, I had these two splitting their two home games this year, so I'm sticking with my guns...


New York Giants (-8) @ St. Louis Rams

*As bad as the Rams looked in week 1, I'm still a little weary of taking to Giants and all these points. Then again, if it wasn't for the Giants ridiculous road record in '08, I don't think the term "David Tyree's Helmet" would even be part of the American lexicon. So until further notice, I'm always gonna be picking against the Rams, and I suggest you do the same...




New York Jets (-1) vs New England Patriots

*And finally, there's this little game. The fan in me wants to take Tom Brady and the Pats just like I did 16 times last year, but this ain't Tom Brady and the Pats now is it? Without Tom Tear-iffic, the New England offense is no longer king of the hill, which for all intents and purposes, makes this "just another game". So, that being the case, Im gonna be "that guy" and take the home team that's not getting nearly enough points. The J-E-T-S hold distinct advantages in both the passing game and the secondary, and their overall defense should give Matt Cassel a lot more problems than that of the lowly KC Chiefs. I expect Mangina and friends to unleash Kerry Rhodes on the young Patriot QB, causing a turnover or two. And I expect Brett Favre to be protected just well enough by the Jet offensive line, so that he's not in position to make a few of those Favre-esque turnovers. More or less, there's only two ways I see this game going. A Jet blowout that has Belichick scrambling for a new QB, or a hard fought game that may instill confidence in Cassel, but sees the home team come out on top. Either way, as much as it pains me to say, I'm taking the Jets, and feeling pretty good about the fate of my betting dollars...


And here are the rest of my picks for week 2...


Oakland Raiders (+4) @ Kansas City Chiefs

Cincinnati Bengals (pick) vs Tennessee Titans

New Orleans Saints (pick) @ Washington Redskins

Carolina Panthers (-2.5) vs Chicago Bears

Atlanta Falcons (+8) @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Seattle Seahawks (-6) vs San Fransisco 49ers

Houston Texans (-4) vs Baltimore Ravens

Jacksonville Jaguars (-4) vs Buffalo Bills

Arizona Cardinals (-5.5)
vs Miami Dolphins


Monday Night
Philadelphia Eagles (+7) @ Dallas Cowboys

*After rivals Oakland/Denver and Green Bay/Minnesota took to the field in week 1 on Monday, week 2 finally gives the nation a rivalry we can sink our teeth into. Both Philly and Dallas romped to wins in week 1, and thanks to their explosive offensive outputs in those games, have really set the entertainment bar rather high for their Monday Night showdown. This one figures to be a fast paced shootout as well, but with points coming from both the offense and the defense. That being the case, I'm giving the nod to the visiting Eagles. Again, it pains me to take a team I don't really like, but I truly think their blitzing schemes and a healthy Donovan McNabb will ultimately give them the edge. And not just in this game, but in the division as well...


Last Week: 7-9-0


Now, for the first time in 2008, I give you my NCAA top 25 picks for the week. This week's games are highlighted by the USC/OSU showdown on Saturday night, but there are plenty of other juicy match ups for you to help wet your betting whistle. Just make sure you don't sleep on Purdue and Fresno St., my top two upset picks of the week. Check 'em out, and make sure to steer clear of Pete Carroll and the poop deck...


College Football Top 25 Picks
(1) USC (-10.5) vs (5) Ohio St.

(2) Georgia (-7) @ South Carolina

(3) Oklahoma (-20) @ Washington

(6) Missouri (-26.5) vs Nevada

(7) LSU (-40) vs North Texas

(9) Auburn (-10.5) @ Mississippi St.

(21) Fresno St. (+1.5) vs (10) Wisconsin

(11) Alabama (-27.5) vs Western Kentucky

(12) Texas Tech (-27.5) vs SMU

(19) South Florida (-3.5) vs (13) Kansas

(14) East Carolina (-13) @ Tulane

(15) Arizona St. (-22) vs UNLV

Purdue (+8) vs (16) Oregon

(17) Penn. St (-26.5) @ Syracuse

(18) BYU (-8) vs UCLA

(22) Utah (-24.5) @ Utah St.

(23) California (-14) @ Maryland

(24) Illinois (-24) vs Louisiana Lafayette


Last Week: 11-9-0

Overall: 25-15-1 (.622)
You'll notice that I have compiled a hefty record despite not posting and picks, but that's because I'm in a top secret college picks league that I didn't let you know about. Yeah, so suck it. What you should also notice, is that I've been doing a pretty good job so far this year. So bet with me, and you'll be a winner....at least in terms of increasing your bank roll. As far as popularity, you're on your own...


So good luck this weekend, homies, and I'll catch you on Tuesday. I'll have the latest on the legit Baby Rays, the Roid Landis comeback tour, and my hilarious takes on the ins and outs of this upcoming weekend in the NFL. So come on back. Besides, if you stop reading this on a regular basis, you're just gonna slip back into the dumbass abyss that you're brain has for so long calling home...


And I'm OUT like the Yanks...