Sunday, November 27, 2005

NFL News, Notes and Week 12 Picks

*After a nice sweep of the two Thanksgiving games, I'm going to try and keep the holiday momentum going. In the league itself, there are a lot of pivotal games this week that will help straighten out divisional and wild card races. There's still a lot up for grabs for a lot of teams, and its only going to get more exciting from here on out. With that being said, let's get to the action!*

Week 12 Picks
Chicago Bears (+3) over Tampa Bay Bucs
Jacksonville Jaguars (-3) over Arizona Cardinals
San Diego Chargers (-3) over Washington Redskins
Carolina Panthers (-3.5) over Buffalo Bills
St. Louis Rams (-3.5) over Houston Texans

Monday Night
Pittsburgh Steelers (+9) over Indianapolis Colts

Record: 33-21-3
Monday Night: 7-5-0

New York Giants @ Seattle Seahawks
*Here is a perfect example of an aforementioned pivotal game. Seattle is trying to take control of the NFC #1 seed for the playoffs, while the Giants not only try to reel them in, but take control of their own division. Now its a matter of Matt Hasselbeck getting himself and his team over the bump in the road that has kept them from winning big games in the past, or Eli Manning maturing well ahead of schedule and bringing the Giants right into the middle of the Super Bowl picture. Both of these teams have aspirations to make to Detroit in Super Bowl XL, and whoever can pull this one off will be making a big statement that they are the best team and favorite in the NFC.

NFL News and Notes
*The 1972 Dolphins might want to start worrying a little bit. Even though the Colts have tough games remaining against Pittsburgh, Seattle, San Diego and Jacksonville, this team doesn't look like its slowing down anytime soon. The Colts are by far and away the Super Bowl favorites as we sit here in week 12, as they essentially have home field advantage locked up. This means not only will they be able to rest their stars at the end of the season, but including the Super Bowl, the Colts will never have to go outside to win a game in the postseason. In many peoples minds (personally I think they are just choke artists) it was having to play outside in New England that led to their doom every year. Now they have eliminated that factor, making this their year. If they don't win it this year, don't expect for this group of Colts to ever win a Super Bowl together.

*Both Herm Edwards and Steve Mariucci got confirmation this week that their jobs are not in jeopardy, at least not yet. I'll tell you what, they should both be counting their lucky stars that I'm not the owner or GM of their teams because they would be out the door so fast their heads would be spinning. The only one I feel for is Mooch, and its not because we have similar sounding nicknames. He didn't draft any of the players he's got to work with, but at the same time, he has been surrounded with enough talent to put up a more respectable showing. In a perfect world, it would be Matt Millen who would go, the guy who brought in 3 top pick WRs in 3 years, and also was convinced that Joey Harrington would be the QB of the future. Herm doesn't get off so easy. He flat out can't coach. I'm sure he's a nice guy, and he has had a lot of injuries to deal with this year, but when you have to hire a coach that strictly runs the clock for you, there are bigger problems. In my perfect world, Pete Carrol would return to the Jets, and fail again miserably just to bring his ego back down to earth. But that aside, I think its obvious both of these teams need to start from scratch with new coaches and a new scheme.

*Speaking of teams that are disappointing this year, you don't need to look any further than the Philadelphia Eagles. They went from a team that had all the weapons and all the experience to make a return trip to the Super Bowl, to being a team in complete disarray because of the TO situation and various injuries from Correl Buckhalter to Donovan McNabb. If I didn't despise Philly and most of their fans, I would feel bad for them. But alas, I don't, and I'm glad they are getting everything they deserve for thinking they could change TO.

*People still seem to have a lot of questions about the true QB ability of Mr. Ron Mexico, known to most of you as Michael Vick. Even though the Falcons have gone 1-2 the last three weeks while trying to keep Vick in the pocket more, it has less to do with that and more to do with bad luck. Admittedly, Vick is a total enigma in the NFL, and it still may take more time for head coach Jim Mora to find the perfect balance of running and passing in his scheme for Vick, but its getting a lot closer. The only problem is the Falcons don't have the luxury of losing a few games while they try to find the right mix for Vick because they play in the ultra competitive NFC South. But with Vick rushing for 94 yards over the last 3, while passing for 661 yards and a 6:1 TD:INT ratio, I would think that the Falcons QB is hitting is stride at the perfect time of the season. If their defense can hold up, they are not only going to make it difficult for Carolina and Tampa in the South, but everyone else vying for a top playoff seed in the NFC.

*Just in case you may not have been 100% convinced that anyone (including all of you slobs out there) could run for quality yardage in the Denver Broncos running scheme, I present to you the 98 yards on only 7 carries turned in by Ron Dayne on Thanksgiving. Is Dayne back? No. This just lends more credence to the fact that you should never underestimate the RBs in Denver as long as Shanahan has his running system in place. From Terrel Davis, Orlandis Gary, Mike Anderson, and Reuben Droughns, I give you The Great Dayne. Just another average back in the greatest running system in the NFL.

College Basketball Top Ten
1. Duke (5-0) 1
2. UCONN (4-0) 2
3. Louisville (1-0) 3
4. Indiana (3-0) 4
5. Texas (5-0) 5
6. Boston College (5-0) 6
7. Villanova (1-0) 9
8. Memphis (3-1) 7
9. Oklahoma (3-0) NR
10. Kentucky (4-1) 8

just missed: Gonzaga, Illinois, Florida
dropped: (10) Michigan St.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Turkey Day Special


Atlanta Falcons (-3) over Detroit Lions
Denver Broncos (-1.5) over Dallas Cowboys

Record: 31-21-3
Monday Night: 7-5-0

Saturday, November 19, 2005

NFL News, Notes and Week 11 Picks

*Finally a normal week back at my home base after two weeks on the run. I can't complain though since I managed to go 6-3-1 during those 2 weeks, so instead I'm just going to try and keep the momentum going. This week I managed to pick 5 games even though there was really only one that I liked (Carolina). It was tough considering that there were a mind blowing 11 games where the spread was at least 6 points! I only chose one of those games, so hopefully I will be rewarded for not playing with too much fire.*

Week 11 Picks
Kansas City Chiefs (-6.5) over Houston Texans
Carolina Panthers (-3) over Chicago Bears
Dallas Cowboys (-7.5) over Detroit Lions
Pittsburgh Steelers (-3) over Baltimore Ravens
Jacksonville Jaguars (-2.5) over Tenessee Titans

Monday Night
Minnesota Vikings (+4.5) over Green Bay Packers

Record: 28-19-3
Monday Night: 6-5-0

NAPPY LOCK OF THE WEEK (6 point tease)

San Diego Chargers (-5) over Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers (+18) over Seattle Seahawks

Record: (2-2-0)

Indianapolis Colts @ Cincinnati Bengals
*Chad Johnson has already come out and said that he guarantees nobody will be able to cover him this week. Head coach Marvin Lewis is probably glad that Chad didn't guarantee a victory, but maybe he hopes that this took a little pressure off of the rest of his team and put the spotlight directly on Chad. This game also serves as a big chance for the Indy defense to state its claim as one of the best in the league. After a very stingy start, the Colts defense has bent a little against tougher offenses like St. Louis and New England, but this is the best offense they have faced all season. If Indy can shut down Rudi, Chad, and Carson, not only will they win the game, but they will make it very difficult for anyone to say that they aren't the current favorites to win Super Bowl XL in Detroit.

NFL News and Notes
*We don't talk about TO!

*Tommy Maddox has been given the start this week for the Steelers against the Ravens. Just a little reminder for Tommy, this still isn't the XFL but lucky for you this also isn't the Ravens defense we are all used to. There's been a lot of speculation that coach Bill Cowher should start WR Antwan Randle El, who as we all know used to be a QB during his days at Indiana. As much as I would like to say Cowher is making yet another terrible decision, I think he actually got this one right. Picking Antwan would be the flashy choice and would go over real well with the fans, until the Steelers lost the game. And just to add a little fire to those of you who would like to see the second coming of "Slash", Randle El in his career in the NFL is 12-14 with 2 TDs as a QB. Whoever starts, Pittsburgh still should have very little trouble coming out on top in this one.

*Olin Kreutz, center for the Bears, beat the living shit out of teammate and fellow ofensive lineman, Fred Miller. Just one look at Olin, and you can tell he's not a man to be messed with. That being said, Fred Miller is no small man in his own right. The funniest part of this whole incident is that it occured at an FBI weapons training facility. Now I have never claimed to be a gun expert, but I am fairly sure that having two 300+ pound men exchanging punches on a firing range is not the safest thing in the world.

*Wait so did I miss something in Detroit? After being shat on for the better part of 2 years as a starter for the Lions, Joey Harrington had his first real good game, throwing for 231 yards 3 TDs and zero picks, and promptly gets benched? And better yet, it's for Jeff Garcia! Word from Lions camp is that Harrington has been taking about 70% of the snaps this week, but thats only on days when Jeff isn't feeling at 100%. My advice (and this is one of the organizations where I feel my input could actually be of some help) is for the Lions to try and ride what little momentum they have going with Harrington. If he doesn't prove himsefl once and for all through the next few games it will do two things. 1) It will give Garcia time to heal back to 100% and drive this team through this weak division and towards a playoff spot and 2) It will force the Lions to see for once and for all if Harrington is their QB of the future.

College Basketball Top Ten
1. Duke (3-0)
2. UCONN (1-0)
3. Louisville (1-0)
4. Indiana (1-0)
5. Texas (2-0)
6. Boston College (1-0)
7. Memphis (2-0)
8. Kentucky (2-0)
9. Villanova (1-0)
10. Michigan St. (0-1)

just missed: Gonzaga, Oklahoma

**I was listening to Jim Rome on Friday afternoon and heard a hysterical line on the Michigan/Ohio St. matchup that I just had to post so here it is:

"This weekend Michigan is going to flame-out faster than Kordell Stewart and Jeff Garcia at a Village People concert."

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

NFL Week 10 Picks!

*Well I managed to go 4-1 last week while in California, so let's see if another venue change can produce another great week. Week 10 Picks live from the Cuse!*

Week 10 Picks
Kansas City Chiefs (+3) over Buffalo Bills
Carolina Panthers (-9) over New York Jets
Denver Broncos (-3) over Oakland Raiders
Washington Redskins (+1) over Tampa Bay Bucs
New York Giants (-9.5) over Minnesota Vikings

Monday Night
Dallas Cowboys (+3) over Philadelphia Eagles

Record: 26-17-2
Monday Night: 5-5-0

Friday, November 04, 2005

NFL Week 9 Picks!

*Slimmed down version this week due to my vacation. But nonetheless here is a 6 pack of picks that are sure to start my second half off on a great note! Enjoy*

Week 9 Picks
Carolina Panthers (-1.5) over Detroit Lions
Cincinnati Bengals (-3) over Baltimore Ravens
New York Giants (-10) over San Francisco 49ers
Tennessee Titans (+3) over Cleveland Browns
Seattle Seahawks (-4) over Arizona Cardinals

Monday Night
New England Patriots (+4) over Indianapolis Colts

Record: 22-16-2
Monday Night: 5-4-0