Friday, September 24, 2010

NFL Picks 2010: Week 3 Picks

Week 3 Picks:

Rams over the Redskins. I want to believe. I'm picking my Rams again. Come on Sam. We need to start a "Sam I am" chant. Didn't he ever read Dr. Seuss? Every young QB should have a copy of "Oh the Places You'll Go"

Pats over the Bills. I thought last week wouldn't be much of a game for New England and I was wrong. Still, the Pats don't lose 2 in a row very often and the Bills have always been a nice remedy when the Brady and Belichik need a doormat. Go ahead and wipe your feet boys, the Bills are used to it.

Ravens over the Browns. Joe Flacco really sucked last week. Keep this up Joe and Ray Lewis may have a meltdown and do his Raven dance on your head. Speaking of which, when does Ray just lose it and end up one morning at 3 am, stark naked standing on the flag at 50 yard line of the stadium yelling, "where's my Payton Manning? Where's my Drew Brees?"

Giants over the Titans. Both looked pathetic last week. It's amazing isn't it?.....when the Giants are winning, Tom Coughlin's manic control issues are seen as keeping the team in line and giving them needed structure, but when they are losing, guys start jumping off his ship like it's the Titanic going down. Super authoritarian types don't go over well in NY when the going gets rough. But one thing's for sure, Coughlin's right about Brandon Jacobs. Just start running hard and straight dude. Your too big to be dancing around back their like Tinkerbell. Man up and drop the drama.

Saints over the Falcons. Brees and co. are tough to beat at home.

Bucs over the Steelers. Even with Charlie Batch running things for Pittsburgh, a Tampa win would be an upset. If it happens Bucs mania goes into full gear..... and that would be awesome. Awesome because it would be totally overblown and in my view not at all indicative of where these teams will be heading by mid-season. It's fun to get worked up over things that don't matter. That's why fantasy football exists.

Bengals over the Panthers. Jimmy Clausen was so-so at Notre Dame and I have trouble seeing him be successful in the the NFL in his rookie season. It's amazing to me that Carolina Coach John Fox left Jake Delhomme in as a starter year after mediocre year...... and then Matt Moore is yanked after 2 starts. Did he watch Jake's performance at all last year? It took a truly vomit-induced year by their QB to get the Panthers out of the Delhomme business. I realize Matt Moore didn't have the relationship and history with Fox that Delhomme had but wow.... Fox, as a coach, seems done in Carolina. If not in body, at least in spirit.
---speaking of mediocre QBs, the Bengal's Palmer who I once thought was going to join
Brady and Manning in elite QB status, has never been the same since getting his knee wrecked in the playoffs against the Steelers a few years back. Too bad.

Vikings over the Lions. Favre, Favre, Favre. This week I want to see Adrian Peterson run wild. I'd also like to get a look at this Jahvid Best kid from Detroit.

49ers over the Chiefs. I need to see more of the Chiefs before I get all hot and bothered by them. The 49ers need to play mistake free for more than a quarter and maybe this week they will.

Cowboys over the Texans. I know, I know. This is crazy. The Cowboys look overrated and the Texans look great. This seems like the perfect time for the Texans to kick big brother in the nuts. Doesn't always work out like you'd dream though. Not that I've had a dream about kicking my big brother in the nuts or anything. However, I have had a couple of thoughts about what it would be like to put a boot into the "nether regions" of Jerry Jones a couple of times......but I mean hey..who hasn't?

Jags over the Eagles. I love to watch Vick. He's just fun. He's also scary as hell if you are an Eagles fan. Watching him in the pocket he's just a flick of defensive paw away from getting stripped (he still holds that pigskin to carelessly). But he's got an incredibly strong arm and he has played well enough to be a starter this week. Considering how many QBs have stunk so far you don't just take good QB play lightly. I hope Kolb's ego can take the hit because he'll probably be needed this season. The Jag's Garrard is occasionally good and maybe this week he and his running game will show up. Or not. They are at home so this week, so I'm thinking they might.

Cardinals over the Raiders. Gradkowski would be the smart answer right now for the Raiders at QB....unless they think Campbell is a long term answer eventually. Then you let him play. The Raiders aren't a playoff team so why not test him out for a year? If he still sucks then he's had plenty of time to prove himself in Washington and Oakland. I think Campbell, like many of the starting QBs in the league is more suited (skillwise) to a backup role (as is Gradkowski). Speaking of backups, Derek Anderson needs to start showing something soon or he's headed back to the bench soon.

Chargers over the Seahawks. So if Lane Kiffin has 2 or 3 years that are average at USC and likewise, Peter Carroll also has some rough years in Seattle, .....does Carroll end up back at USC again? He rides out the sanctions and then comes back on his noble steed? Or is Pat Hayden (new AD at USC) not a Carroll fan? Just wondering. Anyway, the Chargers are a better team than the Hawks so they should beat them. Like that matters sometimes in the NFL. By the way, I loved the "Lord of No Rings" shot that Vincent Jackson's agent threw out there about Chargers G.M, A.J. Smith. Smith is a putz and I'll always side with the players against him. He ran Drew Brees out of town. Damn you A.J. Smith. I liked Drew Brees in the lightning bolt.

Dolphins over the Jets. I will say that if the Jets have the guts to throw on 1st and 2nd downs again this may turn into a victory. I have no idea how good the Dolphins are. Likewise what do we know about the Jets? We know they like to talk, they have a coach that likes his snacks, and they have a corner and a wide receiver with drama issues. I know they impressed me and surprised the hell out of me with the victory against the Patriots. Ryan needs to realize that the Ravens are not something he wants to model in NY. All defense and no offense equals 9-7 and 10-6 seasons and out in the first round or missing the playoffs altogether. You can't be a grinding team in the NFL and win on a consistent basis. It's set up for offense and he needs to let the training wheels come off Sanchez again even if Sanchez take a few lumps and interceptions along the way. If Sanchez isn't the guy then so be it. At least you find out.

Colts over the Broncos. I'm tempted to say the Broncos take this one. The Colts looked good against the Giants so I'll pick Manning again.

Packers over the Bears. This should be interesting. A good offense against an offense that we thought would be good last year....but might be good this year instead. Rodgers is a really good guy and Cutler's a really big dick. Hmmm...who to root for.? Mike Martz is working for the Bears so that clinches it. I wonder if I can make a cheesehead out of paper-mache in time for tomorrow's game.

Last Week: 9-7
Overall: 17-15

Thursday, September 16, 2010

NFL Week 2 Picks

Why would you ever bet on NFL games? To me the risk is so much greater than any possible reward. The way the NFL plays out every year, is to use a gambling term, "a crap shoot".

Still maybe that's why even if you don't gamble it's fun to try and predict what might happen in an uncertain landscape.

Week 2 picks

Colts over the Giants. It's not even close who is the better QB out of the Manning Brothers. Eli is never going to be an elite QB. But he can be a pretty good one at times and I have to think he wants a victory bad. He wants this one like Lindsay Lohan wants a shot of whiskey. I'm guessing NY will send everyone and the kitchen sink at Payton. Last week I thought maybe the Colts might get clipped by the Texans but I wasn't willing to go all in on it. This week they are at home and although I think the Colts have some issues to iron out I'm picking them by a field goal. Question though: Who does the better Manning face, Payton, Eli, or Archie? I'm going with Dad. Last time the two brothers played Archie looked like he needed to take a poop for 3 hours.

Pats over the Jets. Shouldn't be close. The Jets D probably is/will be good this year, but Brady is all the way back and he has his weapons. I think the Pats are going to the Super Bowl this year and I might need to stick my head in an oven when that happens.

Ravens over the Bengals. .....just because I'm giddy over the possibility of Owens and Ochodoofus arguing on the sidelines with each other, Palmer, or anyone for that matter.

Cowboys over the Bears. If the Cowboys lose this game at home and go 0-2 to start, we may as well call in the Apocalypse. Or at least that will be the sentiment in Dallas. I trust Romo over Cutler. However, both sort of scare their fanbases every time they let the pigskin fly.

Eagles over the Lions. I love to watch Michael Vick when he is elusive in the pocket, runs a lot, and is hitting his receivers. Trouble is, even if he plays much this year and were to get back to anything like his form before jail, he had major flaws as a passer in terms of accuracy and touch (which are still there) and I think that dooms him from ultimate success. If Kolb is accurate and can move the offense then I think this he is a no-brainer starter for this season. And even if he isn't great this year don't you need to give him a year to work out the kinks? You just jettisoned a pretty good QB in McNabb for this guy.

Falcons over the Cardinals. Matt Ryan has to be one of the most disappointing players to me last year. He didn't do anything to change that opinion in the first game. Isn't this guy supposed to be getting better instead of regressing? It's early though. Still a whole season to go and he can prove us doubters wrong. On the other side here, I think Derek Anderson may do better this year than he did for the Browns but the Cardinals almost lost the game against the Rams and probably should have lost it. Being a BYU fan, I'm actually rooting for backup QB and ex-BYU Cougar Max Hall to get a shot.

Packers over the Bills. I think this should be a blowout. The Bill's C.J. Spiller will hopefully see a few open holes this week. There weren't any last week that's for sure.

Titans over the Steelers. I'm really starting to dislike Vince Young and Chris Johnson. Johnson especially bugs me. He's fast and a great runner but I find myself rooting against him. Not sure why other than I'm not a big fan of extreme arrogance. I think right now he's on top and he knows it and he's going to make sure everyone else knows it. He deserves a lot of accolades but he's too over the top for my tastes in terms of what he says and how he carries himself. As for Young, the dude says he wanted Bush's tainted Heisman. That's messed up. He's long believed he should have won it. Watch the replay of the announcement at the original presentation. He's visibly upset that he didn't get it. Not that that is a big deal necessarily but I just get a sense of entitlement this guy has had since he got into the league and once again I'm bugged by it. I'm so cliche with my desire for humility from insanely gifted athletes who are worshipped by the masses. I realize the the hypocrisy: we tell these guys how great they are and then we want them to go into "aw shucks" mode. It's not totally unrealistic though. Look at Drew Brees, Kevin Durrant, Rafeal Nadal, etc. It can be done.

Chiefs over the Browns. Memo to Coach Haley of the Chiefs: Get the ball to Jamaal Charles. And often.

Panthers over the Bucs. Don't care about the game. Don't care about either team. I am slightly interested to see which ex-backup QB plays better though.

Vikings over the Dolphins. If the Vikes are smart, they'll dial down the passing game and see if they can win a game on the ground. Favre needs the rest.

Rams over the Raiders. I'm hopeful here. I really like Bradford and I wish he had receivers like Tory Holt and Isaac Bruce (in their primes) to throw to. I don't know what the identity of this team is. Jackson is a great back and they should probably ride him a lot but at the same time that arm of Bradford sure looks fun to test out.

Texans over the Redskins. I may hate myself tonight for drinking the kool-aid (...wait shouldn't it be gatorade in the NFL?) on these guys but Houston looked pretty good against Indy.

Broncos over the Seahawks. This seems like a toss-up but the Broncos are at home. Is that the only reason I picked them? Yep. At least for this week.

Chargers over the Jags. Slow starting San Diego needs to step it up this week and I have hardly ever seen David Garrard have 2 good games in a row.

Saints over the 49ers. Who dat? You guys are the Saints. Why are you always asking that? It's getting annoying.

Last Week 8-8. Ouch.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

NFL Picks: Week 1

Saints over the Vikes. Yes I know it's already been played. Still, Favre returning to New Orleans where he got trashed last year was a no-brainer, even if it was closer than I thought it would be.

Browns over the Bucs. Would this be an upset? Delhomme was so bad last year that yes, yes it would.

Pats over the Bengals. The Bengals may replicate some of the success they had last year but this game is in N.E. and the Bengals attempt to take out Brady in a pre-game car wreck didn't work. I smell a big year for him.

Lions over the Bears. This pick is made with the heart and perhaps not the head. I like the Lions. Not so much on the Bears. Is it possible to like Cutler? When I see him I want to reach into the t.v. and punch him in the face.

Dolphins over the Bills. Isn't it weird that we think of Ricky Williams as a model player now? Will they lean on the former pothead again like they have the past couple of years? I'm not sure but I hope so. I like watching him run. I'm also a little geeked to see C.J. Spiller run for the Bills this year. I thought he should have come out after his junior year.

Falcons over the Steelers. Just can't trust the Steelers yet until we see how Dixon plays.

Jags over the Broncos. Equally frustrating in terms of trying to figure these guys out. This game is a crapshoot too.

Colts over the Texans. I smell an upset here but I can't pull the trigger on it.

Giants over the Panthers. The battle of Steve Smiths. How many Steve Smiths are there around the nation? A couple of hundred thousand? I might start using a flashy middle name if I were one of these guys. Steve Shazam Smith. Now that would get chicks.

Titans over the Raiders. Al Davis is dead. He has to be. JaMarcus Russell is gone, they've hung onto a coach for a couple of years, plus they are talking about hope in Oakland this year. Maybe it's one of those "Weekend at Bernie's" things where they just keep Al on ice and wheel him out every so often with a ventriloquist nearby.

Rams over the Cardinals. I really want the Rams to win this game. I'm buying the Bradford hype. At least for a game. The Rams destroyed me the last few years. As a fan since the mid-90's I just couldn't watch them return to laughingstock status after having a real team from 1999-2004. I've been on leave and just waiting for them to give me a reason to watch. I hope Bradford is it.

Packers over the Eagles. I like everyone else see big things happening for the Packers this year. Rodgers looks great, the teams looks hungry and the Favre thing is so done for them. At least until they play Minnesota.

49ers over the Seahawks. No idea what the "hawks" will be like this year. We have somewhat of an idea about San Fran. Smith is shaky at QB, their defense will play hard and if they win it might be ugly.

Cowboys over the Redskins. This one will probably bite me. I mean it's not like the Redskins have the Cowboy's problem of having a QB trying to prove his worth after some letdowns in the playoffs, a crazy owner, and some dysfunctionality that follows the team. .....oh wait, never mind.

Ravens over the Jets. Do the Jets talk to much? Yes. Does Rex Ryan have a big belly?u..yes. Is Sanchez overhyped? Hell yes. Should I stop talking in questions? Debatable.

Chargers over the Chiefs. Rivers is no slouch at QB. Still, I wonder if Charger fans ever wonder if they would be better with Drew Brees. To me it's like they gave up an elite QB for a very good QB. The difference may not be huge but it could be the difference between a Super Bowl or not.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Dear Mountain West Conference: I miss you already, Sincerely a BYU/Utah guy

Oh what could have been. The Mountain West Conference has been the top Non-BCS conference in the nation over the past few years and it's top teams (Utah, TCU, BYU, Air Force) have rivaled and in some cases been flat out better than other BCS Conference top tier teams. With the addition of Boise State, can you imagine what this conference would have been like a year from now had they also been able to hang onto Utah and BYU. The Beehive State's two college flagship programs have, unfortunately for the conference, decided to take their talents to South Beach......metaphorically speaking. The Pac-10 invitation was too good to pass up for Utah and BYU's bid for independence has it's risks and negatives but will bring the program more money and exposure. More on that in a minute. Right now as a fan of the Mountain West Conference I'm just stuck in a state of grieving. This has been a conference gaining respect and it's sad to me that it has taken a step backward. TCU and Boise St. will dominate for years to come and I can't help but mourn the loss of the rivalry that was developing between TCU and Utah and TCU and BYU, not to mention the Boise St. rivalry that would have been obvious between the Idaho school and the 2 Utah schools as well as the one Boise has already developed with TCU. Another point to mention is the additions of Nevada and Fresno St. to the conference recently. Granted they might not/probably would not have been invited had BYU not been planning to bolt the conference, however it would be cool to think of those guys in there as well. That would have been 7 teams capable of being pretty good year in and year out. Coulda, shoulda, woulda. It would have been fun and there may have been a chance of the conference replacing the Big East in the BCS conferences. It's not to be though and I'm a bit bent about it.

A couple of other points:

  1. BYU's football independence leaves me with mixed feelings. The Mt. West tv network deal is a joke and the conference teams were stupid to agree to it in the first place. It was never going to be a network that was viewed by very many people. BYU was one of the biggest losers of the conference tv deal as it had probably had the most tv exposure prior to the "Mountain" Network. Now they have an ESPN deal that will be a whole lot better. No conference means they'll be playing for bowl games and national respect. Not playing for a conference championship is going to mean less to play for each year. BCS bowls are not guaranteed even with a very good season. Nothing less than an undefeated season would make that a possibility and BYU hasn't done that since 1984 and their national championship. So that can't be part of the thinking in doing this. Supposedly they will try to ratchet up the level of their competition (Notre Dame has signed a deal with the Y and Texas will play them a couple of times) but that means undefeated seasons will be even tougher to accomplish. Still even though a BCS bowl hasn't been their past and probably won't be their future, I at least will enjoy the fact that I can find their games on t.v. next year.

  2. Utah's move to the Pac-10 makes sense. You can't turn that down as much as I hate to see them leave the Mountain West. Still, if the Utes essentially become a team that loses 3-5 games each year and become something like a middle of the road Pac-10 team I wonder if all that tv money and BCS money they'll share will be much consolation for fans that have been used to seeing them be part of the annual national BCS buster conversation. It's entirely possible they can compete regularly with the Pac-10 teams. They have done really well against them in cross-conference competition in the last 5 years. I think occasionally they can even compete for a conference championships. But the days of undefeated seasons are gone and they will be just another hungry Pac-10 team trying to take the king (USC) down.

  3. I feel bad for Boise St. They thought if they joined the Mountain West they would become part of an emerging elite league. They've upgraded but it could have been more. Having said that, the same point I made for Utah applies here to Boise. If they don't dominate the Mt. West like they did the WAC and there are no BCS bowl invites in the next 5 years then I would think their fans will think they should have stayed where they were.
It is what it is. I'll miss the Mountain West. Being a Utah/BYU fan (which is about as weird as a Michigan/Ohio St. fan) means that I will no long be watching this conference much. The changes were almost inevitable and forced upon the teams because of the BCS and the crazy money that some conferences have (and others that do not). Money drives the world. I just wish it hadn't steered the Mountain West Conference out of the state of Utah.