Saturday, October 28, 2006

NFL Picks week 9

Not a lot of time here because of Halloween party preparations. I am really mad about my picks last week. I am slowly approaching Simmons level of incompetence.

PACKERS -3.5 over Cardinals
Arizona on the road, no way. Ahman Green looked decent last week which will help Brett out. He'll still throw a pick, but it will help him out.

BENGALS -3.5 over Falcons
Cincy at home sounds good. They should have Henry back and that will help the offense.

NEW ORLEANS -1 over Ravens
The Ravens do not have the offense to keep up with the Saints.

TITANS -3 over Texans
I can't take the Texans on the road.

EAGLES -7.5 over Jags
The Jags are missing too many guys on defense to contain McNabb.

KC -4 over Seattle
Ugly match up, but the Hawks are not doing anything with Seneca Wallace leading their team.

BEARS -16 over 49ers
Bears might win 17-0. I think the Arizona game might have exposed how to get to Grossman with pressure.

GIANTS -9 over Bucs
If the Bears lose their touch on offense, it is entirely possible that the Giants could win the NFC. They beat the Cowboys down last week. It all revolves around Tiki. Stop him, you stop them. Unfortunately for opposing teams, he is tough to stop.

Rams +9.5 over CHARGERS
Marty finds ways to lose for this team.

Indy +3 over Denver
Peyton or Plummer, easy to decide.

Jets +2 over Browns
I can't wait for the Jets to make the playoffs and get their ass whupped by a weak dvision winner. Watch a team tank to get them as a match up rather than the other wild card team.

Steelers -9 over RAIDERS
No, I am not wagering on these Raiders yet. That was one game versus a horrible team whow as shell shocked from the week before.

Cowboys +6 over Panthers
I like Dallas' D being able to contain the Panthers attack. This game might be 17-14.

VIKINGS +2 over Pats
The Pats are 5-1, but who besides the Bengals have they beaten? Oh yeah, that murderers row of AFC East foes.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

NFL Sunday Ticket from DIrect TV

Last weekend, at my in-laws house, I was exposed to NFL Sunday Ticket for the first time. I recommend it with 2 thumbs up. It redefined how I watched football, how I obsessively tracked my fantasy team without a computer connection, and how I enjoyed a Sunday afternoon. At one point, I had 4 games going on 2 tvs with a 4 step walk between viewing positions in the two separate rooms. It was nice to be able to flip off of a blowout (Dallas vs. Houston) and move to the exciting Titans/Skins game. It was also a joy to have the Iggles/Saints on one tv while I tracked Rudi Johnson on the other tv. As soon as my wife and I own a home, we will have a dish just so I can get the NFL Sunday Ticket.

Friday, October 20, 2006

NFL Picks week 7

I am thoroughly disgusted with myself after last week's ass whupping. I stunk so bad my last name might as well have been Simmons. I'm just disgusted with myself. I also have a problem with some of the heavy favorites. What was up with Cincy not running the ball on the old Tampa D? Why couldn't McFlab hit one of the many bombs he threw in Nawlins?

Panthers +3.5 over BENGALS
Levi Jones is out, the center is out, and Palmer still has not regained all of his mobility. I think Carolina's D-linemen are going to have a field day with the pass rush. The Bengals should take advantage of the depleted LB corps for the Panthers. If I were the OC, I would call a couple of screens to Rudi Johnson to get the D-linemen to think twice. Throw the screens with Rudi in because when Watson goes in, it is almost guaranteed to be a pass.

JETS -3.5 over Lions
I have no comment on the Lions. I do have a comment on the boy genius Magini. If he is so smart why were the Jets throwing on 3rd and 2 with 2:40 left in the game? A run would have forced the Phins to use a TO or to let the clock run to the 2 minute warning? Genius! I watched Chad Pennington closely and he is shot putting the ball. He has no zip at all. I'd have my DBs play off of Jets WRs so to take away the deeper balls and force him to throw "lasers" to complete the short outs, ins, and slants. They can step in and pick them at will.

Packers +5.5 over DOLPHINS
Huge fantasy game for me as I have 2 WRs and a RB in this game. I am hoping for a shoot out. I want a 35-30 score with lots of air time for Jennings and Driver. If they did not have a QB hanging them out to dry, they might have something going in the passing game. I'd like to see Ronnie Brown work the middle fo the Packers defense. The Phins were running wide last week, and they do not have the speed at O-line to pull linemen effectively. Just punch it up the gut and take some pressure off of the O-linemen: "Move this guy back/left/right for 1.5 seconds".

Jags -10 over TEXANS
The Jags should be able to walk their way to a 10 win season. They have the AFC L-east, their weak division foes (excluding Indy), the Chiefs, and the Giants at home. I hope that this year, if they have to travel to Foxboro in January, that they have a healthy Leftwich. Things could be different this time around.

Pats -5.5 over BILLS
I sincerely dislike the Pats (for the 1,000th time), but I have to go with them. The Pats don't look like they have it this year. They might have let one too many guys go in the passing game. If they could have agreed to terms with just one of the WRs they let go, Brady might be able to throw a 5 yard slant instead of always trying to hit that deep seam pass which he doesnt do as well since the ball has to travel longer than 7 yards. The $12 mil under the cap looks really nice right now. A bigger question is to the very stupid news reporters who said that the Pats did not want to give up a no. 1 for Randy Moss. Either the reporters are dumb or the Pats are dumb, but right now they have Seattle's no. 1 pick and their no. 1. One of those could go to the Raiders for Moss. Moss > Branch.

Eagles -5.5 over BUCS
McFlab is going to bounce back this week and absolutely destroy the Bucs D. I think he has one of those 4 TD games in him this week. The kind where he eats up a bad defense and does a stupid dance after a TD pass. I hope that this year he does win the MVP, because for years he has be the be all end all for that offense. The 2001 season was arguably his most MVP season for them because of how he carried that offense, but his level of play this year is at his highest. Now he has a midget named Westbrook to help shoulder some of the load.

Steelers -2.5 over FALCONS
The reason teams in the NFL don't use the toption is because the beatings QBs take and the speed of NFL defenses. Watching the Falcons quasi-spread offense come to a halt in 5 weeks has been fun. Here's a shout out to Warrick Dunn, who, if used properly in his first couple years in the NFL, could have retired with the same glow that Curtis Martin and Jerome Bettis have received. Those two are not Hall of Famers and neither is Warrick Dunn, yet they get tons of glowing coverage and will probably be elected. F-Halls of Fame.

Chargers -4.5 over CHIEFS
Woohoo! only 4.5 at Pinnacle right now, please go there and wager as fast as possible. I have said it before, watching the Chiefs get beat down by superior teams after they run the score up on weaklings is lots of fun. I was stupid to think they could beat the Steelers last week, and I will not make the same mistake (picking the Chiefs against quality foes) twice.

BROWNS +5 over Broncos
It's the spread and the road trip. The Broncos also don't care how much they beat opponents by. Shanahan also doesn't want to push Plummer at all.

Cardinals -3 over RAIDERS
The Raiders passed on Leinart. I mentioned this weeks ago as a stupid move, and this week can be step 1 in the revenge game schedule Matt Leinart has to run through over the course of his career. I can't wait until he plays the Titans.

Vikings +7 over SEAHAWKS
I like Minny's defense matching up against the Hawks. The Seahawks are pretty one dimensional right now, and Minnesota's pass defense is decent enough to keep them in check. I think the game film fromt he Bears game has been on replay non-stop in Minnesota this week.

Skins +9 over COLTS
The Skins can run the ball. Portis should get 20+ carries. Hear me Mr. Gibbs? The Colts will pick their defense apart. It's going to be high scoring and 9 should be enough to cover.

DALLAS -3 over Giants
I do not like the Giants on the road, and I do not like Eli versus the Dallas defense. This should be a traditional, low scoring NFC East affair. Maybe 17-10. Whomever wins this game can grab the wildcard and maybe even the division (depends on Westbrook's knee for Philly). Both teams have tough stretches of games coming up, and need this win to kick start playoff chances.

Friday, October 13, 2006

nfl picks week 6

Buffalo -1 over DETROIT Buffalo's strengths on defense match up well against the Lions. The Lions still are not running the ball and have a dinged up Roy Williams.

Carolina +3 over RAVENS Sorry, but the Ravens just do not have it offensively. They can not move the ball, and are relying on their defense to score or put them in short field position. That can work with mistake prone offenses. The over/under is 33; go with the under. This has 17-9 written all over it.

Bengals -5 over BUCS The Bengals have a great RB; the Bucs a bad run D. Not a great mix. Palmer has performed okay since coming back, and considering Culpepper's return, that is great! I said this last year, people were doubting Palmer's return yet he blew only 1 ligament, Culpepper blew 3. Rudi Johnson should have 100+ yards and 2 TDs. Marvin Lewis will probably workt he run game to take the load off of Palmer.

DALLAS -12.5 over Texans Texans on the road, bah. This one will not be pretty. The Dallas offense will have too much firepower for the Texans, and the Texans might squeak out 10 points. The Dallas front seven will be too quick for the Texans line. I think the Cowboys/Eagles game last week will be stuck in their minds and probably push TO to go off on the lowly Texans.

FALCONS -3 over Giants Atlanta's defense should get to Eli on a consistent basis and force him to make those "back foot" throws. With the Atlanta secondary, there could be some INT TD Return opportunities. If I were the O-coordinator for the Giants, I'd start the game in the no huddle, with Shockey lined up in the slot. Eli works well in the no huddle, and it would force the Falcons to stick to one package of defense.

Eagles -3 over SAINTS I love the Saints story, I really do. I just don't think they have the stuff to take down the Iggles this week. McNabb showed he can play at a super high level with bums as weapons, and he did it against the Dallas defense. The Saints are not at that level for defense yet. The key for the Saints moving the ball will be keeping Drew Brees upright. If they can, he can get the ball to his weapons and force the Iggles to respect the passing game, which will open lanes up for Deuce and Reggie.

Seattle -3 over St. Louis The Rams have 2 cornerbacks out. Not what you want to be missing when the Seahawks come to town. I know Shaun Alexander is out again, but Hasselback should have a 300 yard game with his receiving options. Deion Branch now has several weeks under his belt with the Seahawks offense, and that should make a big difference in his play.

SKINS -10.5 over Titans Titans on the road, Skins at home with a healthy Portis: no brainer. This should be a big day for the Skins offense. Look for them to put up 30+ points.

Chiefs +7 over STEELERS I like Big Ben a lot. I just don't think he is 100%. I don't think they have it this week; look at their injury list. Key parts of their D are out this week. The Chiefs offense should put up 20 points on Pittsburgh, and with the +7, this would force the Steelers offense to put up 4 TDs to cover. You think they can do that right now?

Miami +2 over NY JETS I think this is the week Nick Saban lays into the O-line and they get Ronnie Brown 100 yards. He can haul, and they just need to give him a crease for that 4.35 speed to kick in. The Jets are weak up the middle, and if they stick to the run early, they will wear the Jets D down. The Jets let Jason Ferguson go last year, and John Abraham go this year. You can't lose two quality D-lineman and expect to be strong up front. Think about how the Pats and Iggles are always drafting big D-lineman. The Mangina is a couple of years away from building his 3-4 defense.

San Diego -10 over 49ERS Alex Smith is not doing anything this week. The Chargers pass rush should put him on his back and contain their offense. These guys put a 0 spot up against the Chiefs. San Diego will win big.

DENVER -14.5 over Raiders There is no reason to wager on the Raiders, even with a 2 TD spread. I've got a feeling that Moss is going to end up on the Ravens by year's end.

Bears -9.5 over CARDINALS Sorry Matt Leinart, meet the new Monsters of the Midway.

Friday, October 06, 2006

NFL week 5 picks

After taking 2 years off from fantasy football, I was worried about coming back and being a chump. Given the last pick in the draft, I was very worried I'd be the clown in the league. Fortunately, I have the coveted no. 1 waiver spot all year. Thanks to some stupid draft picks ahead of me, I landed Rudi Johnson at number 12. Mr. McNabb has carried me this season, and my only complaint is with Ronnie Brown. While I have benched the Deuce all season, that might end soon if Ronnie Brown can't put up points. It's not Ronnie, it's Daunte Culpepper. Culpepper can't pass a lick, and this means other teams can stack the box. It also means that the Dolphins can't convert third downs. Drives stall and 3rd down is usually 3rd and long not 3rd and short. Ronnie has had games with fewer than 10 carries, and that is NOT what Nick Saban wanted (should have signed Drew Brees). I'm starting him this week because Rudi has it off, but if he does not improve, I'm going to have to switch him for the Deuce (who I drafted 3 rounds after Reggie Bush).

BEARS -10 over Bills
The Bears dismantled the Seahawks and the 4 wide, 3 wide, whatever offense. Hasselbeck had as low as 4 points in some fantasy leagues (5.75 in mine). This is a top tier QB, perfect for the west coast offense and he could not move the ball on the Bears. JP Losman will not pick them apart. He might get a bomb by them as the Hawks did have two dropped bombs as the Bears secondary had problems handing off a receiver to the next man in the zone. Think about how deep the Bears defense is, a rookie started at free safety last year for them and played very well, 3 INTs. He has been replaced by a rookie. The score will be 24-7, and I hope Bernard Berrian has one deep TD (yeah a waiver wire pick up).

PANTHERS -8 over Browns
I am surprised the Panthers do not use more 3 wide sets with Keyshawn, Steve SMith and Colbert. I think Colbert could be an effective slot receiver for them to complement the big posession WR in Key and the speed threat with Stevie. As long as the Panthers have a healthy Kris Jenkins, I trust their D-line. I do not see Charlie Frye having a good game this week, maybe a garbage time TD to pad the stats.

Lions +7 over Vikings
The Lions can score. They have the tools. I think Kitna can do just enough for them. I also think they are cursed for never giving Barry Sanders a competent QB and pushing him out of the game early. This will be a low scoring affair, and 7 points is a lot for the Vikings terrible offense to cover. Bly should do enough to keep Troy Williamson from striking deep, and Minnesota's defense is good enough to force Kitna to beat them rather than Kevin Jones pound it in on them.

Dolphins +10 over Pats
The points are too high for this match up. No matter the team's records, the games are always close. The Pats will do enough to win, and give up a late TD for the cover. I just hope it is Ronnie Brown on a swing pass for 6. Notice who is the leading receiver for the Dolphins? Ronnie Brown. Culpepper isn't using the "good" WRs of the Dolphins, and has to check down or panic and dump it off. This is a desperation game for the Phins as well, and they will be playing with a huge sense of urgency.

Rams +3 over Packers
I mentioned Barry Sanders above. Here's something scary to think about. The Packers passed on Barry Sanders for Tony Mandarich. I know Mandarich was going to be the next John Hannha, but Barry Freakin' Sanders was available. The best college RB since Herschel Walker. A backfield of Sanders and Favre would have won an extra Super Bowl or 2, uhh 3. I can't believe the Packers are favorites. Didn't the bookies watch MNF? Favre was leaving WRs out to hang. I'm benching Donald Driver in favor of Greg Jennings because I don't know how many shots Driver can take like he did on Monday night. How horrible would it be for Favre to go down and Rodgers to step in and lead them to a respectable finish? Wouldn't that force his retirement, instead of the hemming and hawing?

SAINTS -6 over Bucs
The Bucs can't stop the run (30th in the NFL), and the Saints have two quality RBs to throw at them. I am predicting a big game for Deuce and Reggie. Sean Payton will give Deuce 20-25 carries and Reggie 10-15. I can see him using the run game to wear the Bucs old defense down, and give Brees a rest. Sean P will want to use Deuce and Reggie to allow Drew's shoulder a breather. He can't keep hoisting up 40 passes a game. Have you seen the Bucs depth chart on D? A lot of guys still leftover from the Super Bowl....from 4 years ago.

COLTS -18 over Titans
Peyton is going to go for 400 yards this game. I think he enjoys beating up on the Titans now for the hurting they put on him earlier in his career. I sincerely dislike Vince Young, and nothing warmed my heart last week more than seeing him flail around versus the Dallas defense. Mr. 6 Wonderlic came to play as he ran sideways a lot, threw into triple coverage, misread blitzes. It was fantastic. I can't believe they have given up on the season already and thrown him to the wolves. How lazy was Billy Volek this offseason? Young reminds me of a less spectacular Mike Vick. I don't see him making the adjustment well to the NFL, and he will be out of the game by age 30. If Norm Chow can turn him into a serviceable "quarterback", it should get him a head coaching job.

Skins +5 over GIANTS
These are two teams going in different directions (yeah, it's week 5). The Giants are sniping at their coach, and the Skins are putting in the hours and working hard. The Giants do not play well coming off of the bye, and the Skins have Clinton Portis back. It's simple: get a top 5 RB back in the lineup, and your offense improves greatly.

Soon I am going to do a review of Lavar Arrington's last year at Penn St., and write about how he should have won the Heisman in '99. That year was a good year for the award be up for grabs by a frosh (Mike Vick for that amazing freshman year he had) or a defensive player (Lavar), and his senior year was just that special. Who won it in '99? Ron Dayne for the lifetime achievement of running over 5 foot 8 Big ten defensive backs. Sorry if 2000+ yards in the big ten is so special, why didn't Larry Johnson win it his senior year? The Heisman is an embarassingly poor award as far as selection. Such a distinct honor should be given greater consideration than "Uhhhh, who's the QB on the national champ?" The era of '89-'03 might be the worst 15 year stretch of winners: 3 great pros, Eddie George, Carson Palmer and Ricky Wiliams (make it 4, Charles Woodson). The stretch from '74-'88: Barry Sanders, Vinny Testaverde, Tim Brown, Bo Jackson, Flutie, Mike Rozier, Herschel Walker, Marcus Allen, George Rogers, Billy Sims, Early Campbell, Tony Dorsett.

CARDINALS +3.5 over Chiefs
The Cardinals are a good home risk. I like the premiere of Matt Leinart versus a KC defense. Teams can throw deep on the Chiefs, so Fitzgerald and Boldin should be open. Here's something I do not like about the Chiefs: the run up the score on weak opponents. They act like a college team at times. I like when good teams spank them, and put them in their place. Sadly, they always seem to find a way into the playoffs where they get beaten like schmucks because they can't play D.

JAGS -6.5 over Jets
Jags defense, meet an offense that can't run and can't throw deep. Feast upon them.

49ERS -3 over Raiders
Raiders blow an 18 point lead to the Browns. 49ers get blanked by the Chiefs. Tough call, but I am going with the home team. I think Randy Moss is tanking on purpose to get an in-season trade. A big name in-season trade has not happened since Eric Dickerson went from the Rams to the Colts.

Cowboys +2.5 over EAGLES
Westbrook, Sheppard, Hood, Jevon Kearse and Stallworth are all questionable or worse. Sheldon Brown is going to play, and it looks like Michael Lewis is cleared to play after getting knocked on queer street on MNF. Why do I type this? I think that's too many men out for the Iggles versus the Cowboys offense. Can the Boys pick up the blitz? I think so. I think they pick it up enough for Bledsoe to get the ball to his playmakers. The one thing I hope Bledsoe is going to look for is for the fake out blitz look. The Skins did it to him last year at the end of the season; show blitz and drop 7 men back. It made him dump passes off early. I think the Iggles D-coordinator is just going to keep coming with the blitzes until they knock Bledsoe around and make him gun shy. On the other side of the ball, I just don't think McNabb can beat the Cowboys D all by himself. Stallworth and Westbrook need to play to give their offense a shot to win. I am not going to talk about TO. Lord have mercy on his sould for what will happen to him and be yelled at him this weekend.

CHARGERS -3 over Steelers
I can't believe Marty pissed the game away for the Chargers. The quote from Bart Scott of the Ravens "I'm glad he stuck with his gameplan, because that Rivers kid could play" is perfect for how Marty does not trust his players to execute. You do not go into a shell in the 3rd quarter; this is not high school football. I do not see this being a worry this week. The Steelers have to put up points for me to consider them a threat to the real AFC contenders. Here's a question: how did Najeh Davenport's career spiral so fast out of control? How did he get the back to back injuries and miss out on his payday? I thought 3-4 years ago, he was going to get paid big bucks to be the no. 1 back for another team. A few injuries later and it's all gone. Freaks me out because he is 10 months older than me.

BRONCOS -4 over Ravens
This game is not as even as the spread show.s The bookies think Denver is only a 1 point favoriate excluding home field advantage. No way. The Ravens have no rushing attack. Jamal Lewis is done. His tip toe act was ok when he had that great acceleration at age 23-24; he's lost a step with that prison stint and age. Yeah, 27 and he has lost a step. Doesn't it freak you out that he is in his 7th year and only 27. I wonder how he will be remembered because he does have that sick 2066 yard season under his belt. Will he be revered for having such a quick step for a bruiser or will he be a warning to young kids about throwing away your talent and mixing with the wrong crowd? I vote warning. He was just removed from the 2000 yard season and was lucky to sign a 3 year deal with his own team. The NFl should collect stories like Jamal's and Mandarich's in a behdin the music format and show it to high school seniors and college players. Don't use 'roids (Mandarich), leave your drug dealing homies behind (Lewis), have a heart and try (both Mike Williams-es).