Thursday, September 14, 2006

Pick of the litter


It's NFL pick time again. I know I'm a day early, but I'm going away for the weekend tomorrow and I didn't want all those gamblers who come by to miss out on my words of wisdom for the weekend. Anyway, as I said on Tuesday, the Spiegler method would have gotten me an 11-4 record last week, so I'm going to use a modified version of that this week. That basically means I'll be picking the underdog, unless I've decided in my ultimate wisdom that the favorite is going to cover the spread. I will, of course, end up picking the wrong games to go against the SM(Spiegler method(trademark pending)). I'll probably have a hard time beating last weeks mark of 7-8. I'll also add my "Best Bets of the week"(trademark pending)selections at the end of the column. That's just another chance for me to be wrong. I'll add the same warning that I did last week; These picks are for entertainment purposes only. And given my record, they are pretty damn entertaining. Here Goes nothing:

Home Team in Bold

Miami -6.5 Buffalo
Dante Culpepper certainly didn't impress anyone last week in his return to action. He was playing against the defending SuperBowl champs, but he's not quite at 100% yet. Buffalo put up a great fight and almost beat NE in Foxboro (or wherever the hell the play now). Buffalo usually plays better at home. I'm going with the points on this one. The U/O is 37. I'd take the under in this game.

Carolina -1.5 Minnesota
Carolina showed what a weak offense they are without Steve smith last week. Minnesota played a smart, conservative game and came away with a road win against Washington. I am tempted to believe that Carolina will come up with a better game plan this week considering that smith is likely to be out again. However, I'm not going against the SM. I'll take the points and the under (37)

Cincinnati -10.5 Cleveland
Cleveland is pretty damn bad. I don't how many games they are going to win this year but the under/over has to be at about 4. Cincinnati looked very good last week and while Palmer didn't have a great game, he didn't make any mistakes either. As I learned last week, 10.5 is a lot of points. I'm really tempted to go the other way, but I'm sticking with the plan. Take the points.

Atlanta -5.5 Tampa Bay
It's amazing how one bad week turns everything around. Tampa Bay, who some predicted would end up in the superbowl are now underdogs to Atlanta. Michael Vick played under control last week and the Falcons won in convincing fashion. Their first home game should get the blood pumping a little faster for Mr. Vick. We might see him pull off something amazing this weekend. And I still think Chris Simms sucks. All that being said, I'm taking the points. I'll go with the over (36) in this one.

Baltimore -12.5 Oakland
It's a testament to how poorly Oakland played last week that they are an almost two touchdown underdog to a team that has historically had problems scoring points. Is Oakland as bad as they looked last week? They can't be, can they? Steve McNair is still healthy after a week one win, so all the elements are in place for a blowout. However 12.5 is a huge spread, so I'm sticking with the plan and taking the points. I'll take the under (34)

Philadelphia -3 NY Giants
Philadelphia looked great last week. McNabb is definitely fully recovered from last seasons injuries. The Giants were solid against the Colts, but could not come away with the victory. This is the first divisional match-up for both teams and I expect it will be a very tight game. I'm thinking that Manning will come out with a pretty strong. I suspect that he was a little nervous last week playing his brother, but he still managed to outperform him. I'll take the points and the over (43).

New Orleans -2 Green Bay
Green Bay looked terrible last week. New Orleans looked ok. It's another home game for Brett Favre and crew and they have to be able to bounce back from the disaster that was last week. I don't know why I think that they can, but I just think that they are going to be much more focused and Favre definitely has something to prove. I'll take the points and the over (38).

Indianapolis -13.5 Houston
Wow, this is a huge spread. Houston didn't show much against the Eagles and the Colts looked less than dominating against the Giants even though they managed to get the win. The Houston O-line continues to be swiss cheese and without their starting RB for the remainder of the season, David Carr is going to running for his life. Anyway, I still think that you could get a college team to cover 2 touchdowns. Take the points and the under (47).

Seattle -7 Arizona
Was last week just a blip on the radar screen for the Seahawks? We're about to find out as a rejuvinated Kurt Warner and his aerial attack come to Seattle for a visit. Arizona looks like they can definitely put up some points and Seattle is going to have score more than the 9(?) they managed against Detroit last week. Anyway, take the points and the over (47).

St. Louis -3 San Francisco
St. Louis pulled off the upset of Denver at home last week and San Francisco played better than expected in their loss. I still don't think San Francisco is very good. I'm deviating from the SM for this game. Take St. Louis and the under (43.5).

Denver -11 Kansas City
Denver has the best home field advantage in all of professional sports. Kansas City lost it's starting QB last week and has a history of getting blown in Denver. They have never won at the new stadium there and without a Green they stand little chance. Larry Johnson is going to have to have a huge day if KC is to stay in this game. Jake Plummer has his own problems, from a subpar performance last week, to a rookie who's just waiting to take his place. The fans will be all over him if he doesn't get off to a good start. Take the points and the under (40.5).

NE -6 NY Jets
The Jets looked very impressive in their opening game and now get to play their first home game. NE struggled against Buffalo in their home opener. The Patriots have a pretty good running attack, but they have lost their best receiver. As long as Pennington stays on the field the Jets will have a chance. Take the points and the under (37).

San Diego -11.5 Tennessee
Jesus! what's with all the double digit spreads this week. Clearly the odds makers think that there are some horrible teams in the NFL. I happen to agree but these are big numbers to cover. San Diego is now a running team. They are keeping Phillip Rivers on a short leash for now. Tennessee is still a mess. Kerry Collins got the start last week, but even Vince Young got in for a series. I'm not sure what happens, but I'm hoping that the SM works again. Take the points and the under (37.5).

Dallas -6 Washington
Two teams coming off very unimpressive performances. Another game like last week and Bledsoe is going to find himself holding a clipboard. Washington should have Portis back for the whole game this week and, as is the norm in games between these two, it should go down to the wire and be decided by a field goal. Hopefully Vanderjagt is up to the task. Apparently Bill Parcells doesn't have any faith in him. Take the points and the over (37).


Pittsburgh -1.5 Jacksonville
Big Ben may be back for Pittsburgh for this Monday night game. I can't say for sure and 1.5 means that this is basically a pick 'em game. Jacksonville looked good vs. the Cowboys and they are at home, plus I'm a big fan of Byron Leftwich. I'm going to stick with the SM and take the Jags and the over (36.5).

Here are my BEST BETS OF THE WEEK.
Buffalo +6.5
St. Louis -3
Jets +6
Arizona +7

Enjoy everyone and I'll be back on Tuesday to share the bad news.

P.S.
I'd like to thank the folks at The Big Lead and Can't Stop the Bleeding for their mentions and links. I certainly do appreciate it.

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