Saturday, October 31, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 8

Week 7 NFL Results: 7-5-1
NFL Results Season to Date: 57-58-1

Week 7 College Football Results: 1-3
College Football Results Season to Date: 24-15

Week 7 This Is Why Results: 3-1
This is Why Results Season to Date: 19-10

Week 8 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Baltimore -3.5 Denver (Denver)
At Chicago -13.5 Cleveland(Chicago)
Houston -3 At Buffalo (Houston)
At Green Bay -3 Minnesota (Minnesota)
At Indianapolis -11 San Francisco (Indy)
At New York Jets -3.5 Miami (New York Jets)
At Detroit -3 St. Louis (Detroit)
At Dallas -9 Seattle (Seattle)
At San Diego -16.5 Oakland (Oakland)
At Tennessee -3 Jacksonville (Jacksonville)
At Arizona -8.5 Carolina (Arizona)
At Philadelphia -2 New York Giants (NYG)

Monday Night Football

At New Orleans -8.5 Atlanta (New Orleans)

College Picks

At Wisconsin -6.5 Purdue (Wisconsin)
At Arkansas -36.5 Eastern Michigan (Arkansas)
Michigan -7.5 At Illinois (Michigan)
Michigan St. -4.5 At Minnesota (Michigan St.)
Penn State -14 at Northwestern (Penn St.)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

Michigan State -3.5 over Minnesota - Expect cold weather and rain at the Golden Gophers' new stadium. Michigan State wants to establish the power run with Larry Caper and Edwin "Rock" Baker. Their quarterback, Kirk Cousins, is on record as saying that he prefers to play in the cold and rain. Minnesota is struggling to score points. Minnesota lost All-American candidate WR Eric Decker for the season due to an injury in last week's game. Michigan State's defense is really starting to gel, at least for the first 59 minutes of their games. Yup, I'm laying points and taking the road team.

Michigan -7 over ILLINOIS - All Michigan does is run from Rich Rodriguez's spread offense. Illinois defense can't stop the run. Michigan quarterback Tate Forcier is just dangerous enough through the air to burn you through the air in the event that Illinois tries to cheat up with 8 in the box. Michigan has the added incentive to win in order to become bowl eligible for the first time in two years.

ARKANSAS -36.5 over Eastern Michigan - A mediocre SEC team playing one the worst teams in the MAC. I don't think Eastern Michigan can cover this one unless the Razorbacks lay down and die.

CHICAGO - 13 over Cleveland - I don't fully trust Chicago, but I'm going to continue to bet against Cleveland. If Chicago can't establish Joseph Forte and their running game against the Browns, then you can write them off for the rest of the season as a contender for the NFC North title.

Jacksonville +3 over TENNESSEE - Tennessee has done nothing this season to lead me to believe that they are ready to win a game, let alone lay down 3 points in the process. I know that Tennessee has one of the top run defenses in the league to try and stop Maurcie Jones-Drew, but Jacksonville's passing game has been sneaky good with the addition of Torry Holt and the emergence of Mike Sims-Walker.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Here's How Brett Favre Tried to Screw Over the Green Bay Packers

There are a lot of mixed emotions for Green Bay Packer fans who used to idolize Brett Favre heading into his return to Lambeau Field this weekend as the quarterback for their arch rival Minnesota Vikings.

Was Brett Favre screwed over by Ted Thompson and the Green Bay front office? Or did Favre betray his loyal Packer fan base by plotting to force Green Bay to release him?

While a minority of Packer fans who are less educated in the intricacies of the NFL salary cap feel sympathetic towards Favre and blame his departure from Green Bay on Ted Thompson, below I make a case for my firm belief that it was Brett Favre who attempted to screw the Packers over by sabotoging their salary cap so he could play for his friend Brad Childress in Minnesota.

The following timeline not only documents the relevant events in the Favre/Green Bay "unretirement" saga, but I have added my own commentary in italics explaining how it was Favre who forced his way out of Green Bay against the will of the Packers front office.

I would point out that this timeline is not based upon my own reporting, but from various news reports that I found on the internet. While I cannot attest to the veracity of information from those outside news sources, I can make the links to such available upon request:


2/1/05 - Packers wide receiver Donald Driver goes public with his belief that Brett Favre will likely retire instead of playing in the 2005 season.

4/23/05 - Green Bay drafts Aaron Rodgers with the 24th pick of the 1st round in the NFL Draft.

Brett Favre became threatened when the Packers drafted Rodgers, believing that Thompson was attempting to force him out of Green Bay. However, with Brett Favre remaining uncommitted for the 2006 season, it is hard to fault Green Bay for drafting an insurance plan in case he was considering retirement. Even if Favre returned, it made perfect sense for Green Bay to secure an understudy to groom as his long-term successor. Of note, Favre was so bitter about Rodgers' presence in Green Bay that he refused to help mentor him as his back-up.

When asked why he refused to mentor Aaron Rodgers as his back-up, Brett Favre bitterly responded by saying, "That's not my job."

1/6/06 - The Minnesota Vikings hire Brad Childress as their head coach, who is close friends with Brett Favre.

1/30/06 - Brett Favre suggests that he may not return for the 2006 season after his friend Mike Sherman was fired as the Packers coach following a 4-12 season in 2005.
4/29/06 - Green Bay drafts WR Greg Jennings in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft. Jennings gives Favre another option at WR, putting up 632 yards and 3 TD's in his rookie year.
Sherman was Favre's last close friend on the Packers in regards to both the coaching staff and the locker room. Ted Thompson's decision to fire Mike Sherman further alienated Favre from the Packers front office.

11/12/06 - Green Bay head coach Mike McCarthy indicates that he would like Brett Favre to return to the Packers for the 2007 season, but asks him to make a quick decision.

12/31/06 - Brett Favre indicates that Green Bay's last regular season game could be his last. (Green Bay finishes the 2006 season 8-8 and misses out on the playoffs on the last day of the season).

2/2/07 - Brett Favre commits to return to the Green Bay Packers for the 2007 season.

4/28/07 - Green Bay drafts WR James Jones in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft. Jones gives Favre another deep threat. He catches passes for 676 yards and 2 TD's in his rookie season.

5/14/07 - Brett Favre voices displeasure that Green Bay did not trade for Randy Moss from Oakland and requests to be traded.

By this point it is becoming clear that Brett Favre is going out of his way to voice his dissatisfaction with the Packers front office, and towards Ted Thompson in particular. In addition to using high draft picks on Greg Jennings and James Jones in back to back years, the Packers also have Donald Driver, Ruvell Martin, Donald Lee and Bubba Franks to round out a deep group of pass catching targets. Trading for Randy Moss would have been a pure luxury, and the Packers failure to do so would hardly have been an independent basis to demand a trade. Favre's request to be traded was more of a reflection of his alienation with the locker room and front office after his closest friends (Mark Chmura, Mike Flanagan, and Doug Peterson) gradually left the NFL, and Ted Thompson decided to fire Mike Sherman.
2007 season - Green Bay finishes with a 13-3 record, missing out on going to the Super Bowl after losing to the New York Giants in the NFC Championship Game due in part to a Brett Favre interception in overtime.4/25/06 - Brett Favre commits to play another season for the Green Bay Packers.

2/22/08 - Ted Thompson calls Brett Favre after hearing that he is upset. Thompson assures Favre that he wants him back as the Packers quarterback, and tells him that they know he can still play in the NFL.

2/29/08 - NFL free agency begins, which was the date Green Bay had asked Brett Favre to make a decision as to whether he was going to return to the Packers for the 2008 season or retire. Nonetheless, Green Bay tells Favre that he is their number one priority and that they are not holding him to any formal deadline.

3/3/08 - When Brett Favre still won't commit to returning for the 2008 season, Mike McCarthy offers him the option of decreased repetitions in practice if he would come back as quarterback for the Packers.

3/4/08 - Brett Favre announces his retirement from the NFL, with a formal retirement conference taking place on 3/6/08.

3/24/08 - Reports surface that Brett Favre is having second thoughts about retiring, and he requests Packer coach Mike McCarthy to call him. Mike McCarthy calls Brett Favre and asks him to return to the team. A plane is chartered for Brett Favre to fly to Green Bay in order to meet with the Packers front office.

3/29/08 - After meeting with the Packers, and in response to their offer to return as starting quarterback, Brett Favre tells Mike McCarthy "thanks, but no thanks."

4/4/08 - Bus Cook, Brett Favre's agent, begins contacting other NFL teams to gauge their interest in his client.

4/9/08 - Brett Favre formally indicates that he would consider returning to the NFL.

4/7/08, 4/14/08, & 4/24/08 - After Mike McCarthy contacts Brett Favre (on each of these three occasions), the Green Bay Packers officially place him on the NFL "retired" list.

5/6/08 - After the NFL Draft, Ted Thompson travels to Mississippi to have lunch with Brett Favre on his porch.

6/20/08 - Brett Favre tells Mike McCarthy that he may play again.

7/8/08 - After several calls with the Packers, Brett Favre declares that he is 100% committed to returning to football, but he requests his release from the Green Bay.

7/11/08 - Brett Favre formally requests to be released from the Green Bay Packers.
Things are getting interesting now. When the Packers went out of their way to try to convince Favre to come back he was non committal. Now he says he wants to play, but with another team.

It is significant to note that when Favre was placed on the NFL "retirement list," the $12 million he was scheduled to earn in 2008 came off of Green Bay's salary cap. It was no coincidence that Favre decided to "unretire" only after Green Bay spent Favre's $12 million base salary for 2008 in free agency and on contract extensions for existing players. This was a calculated move by Favre and Bus Cook to put Green Bay over the salary cap, which they hoped would force Green Bay to give him his unconditional release so he could sign with the Minnesota Vikings as a free agent.
7/14/08 - Brett Favre tells Fox News that he wants to play somewhere other than Green Bay in 2008.

7/16/08 - The Green Bay Packers file formal tampering charges with the NFL against the Minnesota Vikings for their alleged contact with Brett Favre.
Even though Favre was technically retired, his contractual rights were still the property of the Green Bay Packers. Green Bay was obviously aware that Favre had been discussing a return to the NFL with his friend Brad Childress. Given that Childress was the head coach for their arch rival Minnesota Vikings, giving Brett Favre his unconditional release and allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent was no longer a viable option for Green Bay from a PR standpoint.
Aware that Green Bay was unwilling to voluntarily release him as he had requested (which would have allowed him to sign with the Minnesota Vikings as a free agent), Favre tried to force his release by threatening to report to training camp under the guise that he was willing to play fo the Packers. His official return to the Packers would have caused his $12 million base salary to count against the $109 million salary cap for the 2007 season. This left Green Bay with three options to avoid going over the NFL salary cap:

1) Unconditionally release Favre, allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent,
2) Trade Favre to another team, forcing the Packers to absorb the remaining pro-rated "signing bonus" from his contract against their salary cap (which in terms of salary cap ramifications would have been the equivilent to Favre having remained retired), or
3) Cut or renegotiate with players on their existing roster in order to create room for Favre's $12 million base salary for the 2007 season.
7/28/08 - The Green Bay Packers open training camp.7/25/08 - Brett Favre says he will formally report to training camp with the Green Bay Packers.

7/29/08 - Brett Favre faxes a request to the NFL to be reinstated from the "retirement" list.

7/31/08 - The Green Bay Packers offer Brett Favre $20 million to stay retired and work for their front office.

As an alternative to having to trade or release Favre, Green Bay essentially offered him the same amount of money that they would have owed him for the remaining two years of his contract to stay retired in order to keep the $12 million they would owe him in 2008 off of their salary cap.
8/3/08 - The NFL officially reinstates Brett Favre from retirement.

8/4/08 - Brett Favre formally reports to training camp with the Green Bay Packers.

Inexplicably, the NFL granted Green Bay a temporary roster exemption for Favre, which temporarily kept his 2008 base salary from counting against their cap upon his arrival at training camp. Not only was this move from the NFL unprecedented, but it allowed Green Bay a window of opportunity to negotiate with Favre so as to avoid having to immediately release him due to salary cap ramifications.
By threatening to create salary cap space for Favre on their roster, Green Bay called Brett Favre's bluff in order to see if his true intent was to report and play for Packers, or whether it was to force his release.
After the Packers called his bluff by inviting him to compete for the starting job and creating salary cap space on their roster, Favre realized that he would be forced to play for the Packers or accept a trade to a team that the two could mutually agree upon.

8/6/08 - The Green Bay Packers trade Brett Favre to the New York Jets.8/5/08 - In spite of showing up for training camp, Brett Favre refuses to practice, stating "this isn't going to work."8/4/08 - The Green Bay Packers announce that they will have an open competition between Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers for their starting quarterback position.
Brett Favre chose to accept a trade to the Jets over the opportunity to compete with Aaron Rodgers for the Green Bay starting quarterback job.
2/13/09 - After one season with the New York Jets, Brett Favre announces that there is "no way" he'll play another game in the NFL.

4/28/09 - The New York Jets grant Brett Favre his unconditional release.
Why did the Jets release Favre when he was he was retired and his salary was off their cap? What was the potential benefit to the Jets in releasing Favre UNLESS THEY WERE ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN that Favre would not return to the NFL with one of their conference rivals? Unless the Jets knew for sure that Favre would only return to the NFL with a non-conference foe like the Vikings, there was absolutely no reason for the Jets to release him instead of keeping him on the NFL "retirement" list. I have no source on this, but I am almost certain that the Jets released Favre knowing full well that he already had a deal with the Minnesota Vikings.
6/15/09 - Brett Favre expresses an interest in returning to the NFL.

8/18/09 - Brett Favre "unretires" and signs with the Minnesota Vikings.


Brett Favre had his feelings hurt when the Packers drafted Aaron Rodgers even though he wouldn't immediately commit to coming back for the 2006 season. Favre already felt isolated in the Green Bay locker room after some of his closest friends from his earlier playing days left the league. His feelings were further hurt when the Green Bay front office fired his remaining friend, head coach Mike Shermer, following a 4-12 season in 2005.

As time progressed, Favre looked for reasons to get out of Green Bay and play for his friend Brad Childress in Minnesota, as shown by his ridiculous request to be released when the Packers didn't trade for Randy Moss in 2007. Favre later tried to force Green Bay to release him by retiring in March 2008, and then "unretiring" on the eve of the 2008 training camp in order to put the Packers over the salary cap so as to force his release.

When Green Bay offered to let Favre report to camp and compete for the starting quarterback job with Aaron Rodgers by restructuring enough contracts to create room for his 2008 salary, Favre showed his true colors and refused to practice with the Packers. Not surprisingly, having realized that he would not be able to force Green Bay to release him so he could sign with the Vikings as a free agent, Favre reluctantly agreed to a trade the New York Jets just one day later.

Favre's true desire to play for Minnesta was evidenced by his signing a contract with the Vikings after having inexplicably been given his release by the Jets without so much as having even negotiated with any other franchise.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 7

Week 6 NFL Results: 6-8
NFL Results Season to Date: 50-53

Week 6 College Football Results: 4-1
College Football Results Season to Date: 23-12

Week 6 This Is Why Results: 3-3
This is Why Results Season to Date: 16-9

Week 7 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Houston -3 San Francisco (San Francisco)
San Diego -4.5 At Kansas City (San Diego)
Indianapolis -13 At St. Louis (Indianapolis)
New England -15 neutral site Tampa Bay (New England)
At Pittsburgh -3.5 Minnesota (Minnesota)
Green Bay -7 At Cleveland (Green Bay)
At Carolina -7 Buffalo (Carolina)
New York Jets -5.5 At Oakland (New York Jets)
At Cincinnati -1 Chicago (Chicago)
At Dallas -3.5 Atlanta (Atlanta)
New Orleans -6.5 At Miami (New Orleans)
At New York Giants -7 Arizona (NYG)

Monday Night Football

Philadelphia -7 At Washington (Philadelphia)

College Picks

Penn St. -4.5 At Michigan (Michigan)
Florida -23 At Mississippi St. (Florida)
Boise St. -25 At Hawaii (Boise St.)
At Michigan St. even Iowa (Michigan St.)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why. I was struggling to find any college lines that jumped out at me this week, so I'm going to focus on the pro games:

New England -15 over Tampa Bay - New England's offense is starting to click after last week's blow out win over Tennessee. Tampa Bay's defense is struggling, and Bill Belichick is not afraid to run up the score.

Green Bay -7 over CLEVELAND - Green Bay is still struggling to protect Aaron Rogers, but Cleveland's pass rush doesn't install fear in much anyone. This should allow Green Bay to run a "max protect" scheme in order to hold the sacks to a minimum (under five). Furthermore, Cleveland has had 12 players out of practice this week due to a flu outbreak, and their status for Sunday's game is still unknown.

Indianaplis -13 over St. Louis - Peyton Manning is finding his rythym of 3 seasons ago with six straight 300 yard games to start the season. This another example of an elite team playing a bottom dweller where Las Vegas simply cannot set the line high enough. Indianapolis' defense has been performing well even without Bob Sanders, who should return from injury this week and give the Colts an extra boost.

Atlanta +3.5 over Dallas - Dallas is simply not a very good team. While the Falcons are on the road this week, they are a good team. The key to this match up is whether Tony Romo and the Dallas receivers can exploit a banged up Atlanta secondary, who lost Brian Williams to injury last week. I still like Atlanta taking any amount of points in this game, especially given Tony Romo's inconsistencies this season.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Why Steelers Fans Suck

There are certain unwritten rules that must be observed when watching football in a sports bar so as to avoid potential conflict and ridicule.

Unfortunately, on the way to watching their team possibly become the best franchise in the NFL, Steeler fans seem to be completely unaware of this applicable code of etiquette and fashion for football fans.

Here is a list of some rules that every Steeler fan needs to familiarize himself with:

1. Loud cheers are acceptable for touchdowns, important first downs, big stops, big hits and turnovers. It is not appropriate to yell or clap loudly in a sports bar when the Steelers run for 3 yards on first down, or when they get a first down in the second half while leading 31-6. 

Pittsburgh fans also need to be aware of the fact that not everybody in the bar is cheering for the Steelers. So every time you're not in Pittsburgh, and you turn to the table next to you looking for a high five, alert yourself to the fact that you are just as likely to get punched in the face by a Bengals, Browns or Ravens fan.

2. No man should feel the need to bring an accessory to a sports bar. If you feel like you need a hanky to bring the Steelers good luck, then stuff it down your pants.

We don't need to see you obsessively folding your stupid fucking Terrible Towels or draping them over the side of your table like they're more sacred than the Shroud of Turin.

Sorry Steeler guy, if you bring something to a bar that serves no functional purpose, it's an accessory 

3. Willie Parker has lost a step. He is no longer fact, he might be dead. Please stop yelling "Fast Willie" every time he touches the ball.

4. Lose the "mustaches con queso" (cheesy mustaches). Just because you thought that Bill Cowher had a bitchin' mustache it doesn't mean that it is cool to rock one of your own.

Keep in mind that transitioning to a goatee won't help either, as the goatee is equally dated as the "porn stache" of the new millenium.

5. Many people will say that you shouldn't wear a jersey in public to begin with if you are over the age of 30. However, if you do feel the need to wear a jersey to the bar, it should NEVER, EVER be tucked in. It is a proven statistical fact that Pittsburgh fans lead the league in tucked in jerseys.

Worse yet, Pittsburgh fans are afficianados de tucking their jerseys into jean shorts, and for those few Steeler fans who actually reside in Pennsylvania, jean shorts have not been an acceptable fashion option for guys since 1997.

A Terrible Towel, a goatee and a Big Ben jersey tucked into black and gold Zubaz style pants?...Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce to you the protypical Steeler fan!  (fat wife included)

6. If you are a Steeler fan and you are not from Pennsylvania or West Virginia, or if you do not have family from those areas that raised you as a Steeler fan, and if you have no idea what a "jagoff" is, then you really have no right to cheer out loud for the Steelers as if they are your local team.

I'm not saying that you can't like the Steelers, you just can't wear your emotions on your sleeve since your only investment in that team was choosing to root for a team that was good while you were growing up without a father to teach you right from wrong in: a) the mid to late 1970's, b) the mid to late 1990's, or c) the mid to late 2000's.

I'm willing to bet that this Steeler fan that I recently spotted in Kentucky wearing a camouflage Ben Roethlisberger jersey has no ties to the Pittsburgh area...He just really likes hunting and raping women.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 6

Week 5 NFL Results: 9-5
NFL Results Season to Date: 44-45

Week 5 College Football Results: 1-3
College Football Results Season to Date: 19-11

Week 5 This Is Why Results: 4-1
This is Why Results Season to Date: 13-6

Week 6 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Washington -6.5 Kansas City (Washington)
At Cincinnati -4.5 Houston (Cincinnati)
At Pittsburgh -14 Cleveland (Pittsburgh)
At Minnesota -3 Baltimore (Baltimore)
At Jacksonville -9.5 St. Louis (Jacksonville)
At New Orleans -3 NYG (NYG)
Carolina -3.5 At Tampa Bay (Carolina)
At Green Bay -13 Detroit (Green Bay)
Philly -14 At Oakland (Philly)
At Seattle -3 Arizona (Arizona)
At New York Jets -9.5 Buffalo (New York Jets)
At New England -9 Tennessee (New England)
At Atlanta -3.5 Chicago (Chicago)

Monday Night Football

At San Diego -3.5 Denver (Denver)

College Picks

At Ole Miss -22 UAB (Ole Miss)
Central Michigan -6.5 At Western Michigan (Central Michigan)
Miami -14.5 At Central Fla. (Miami)
Ohio State -13.5 At Purdue (Ohio State)
Georgia -7.5 At Vanderbilt (Georgia)

This is Why
Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why:

Baltimore +3 over MINNESOTA - Green Bay did not blitz or pressure Brett Favre two weeks ago. Last week St. Louis was incapable of blitzing him. I fully expect Baltimore to make Brett Favre as uncomfortable as possible in the pocket and force him to make mistakes. I think Baltimore wins this game even though it is being played in the Metrodome. In fact, any time Baltimore gets points this year there's a good chance I'll probably take them.

Philadelphia -14 over OAKLAND - This game highlights a couple of trends. AFC West bottom dwellers Oakland and Kansas City have struggled to cover even large spreads against good teams. NFC East elite teams like Philadelphia and New York have easily covered large spreads against poor teams. I'm taking Philadelphia in this one as my pick of the week.

New York Giants +3 over New Orleans - Much like the Ravens, if the Giants are getting points this season then sign me up. This is actually a great mactch up. New Orleans is at home with a prolific offense, but the Giants strong pass rush is going against a Saints team missing their starting left tackle. Additionally, how many times do we see an up and coming young team fall to the more established team that is used to playing in big games? At the very mimimum New York stays in this game by being able to run the ball, while I look for New Orleans to struggle on the ground against the Giants. Advantage New York.

NEW YORK JETS -9.5 over Buffalo - Buffalo is really struggling right now. While the Jets have lost two in a row, I think that their defense will rebound by putting "Revis Island" on Terrell Owens and keeping 8 in the box in order to stuff Buffalo's running game. Buffalo's defense has some pretty significant injuries, so I don't think the Jets will have any problem putting up enough points to cover this spread.

NEW ENGLAND -9 over Tennessee - Staying true to my words from last week, I am staying away from Tennessee until they prove to me that they can right the ship. A struggling team playing in Foxboro against Tom Brady with two possible rookie starting corners is a recipe for disaster. Even if Cortland Finnegan does manage to play, there will still be mismatch issues that Tennnessee will have to deal with between New England's wide receivers and their secondary.

Central Michigan -6.5 over WESTERN MICHIGAN - The game that sparked "The End of the World Party" is on. Western Michigan has a fairly decent football team, but Central Michigan is looking pretty special right now behind qb Dan Lefevour. I think CMU wins in a route in this in-state rivalry game.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 5

Week 4 NFL Results: 6-8
NFL Results Season to Date: 35-40

Week 4 College Football Results: 3-2
College Football Results Season to Date: 18-8

Week 4 This Is Why Results: 2-2
This is Why Results Season to Date: 9-5

Week 5 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

Minnesota -9.5 At St. Louis (Minnesota)
Dallas -8.5 At Kansas City (Dallas)
At Carolina -3.5 Washington (Washington)
At Philly -15 Tampa Bay (Philly)
At NYG -16 Oakland (NYG)
At Buffalo -6 Cleveland (Cleveland)
At Baltimore -8.5 Cincinnati (Cincinnati)
Pittsburgh -10.5 At Detroit (Pittsburgh)
At San Fran -2.5 Atlanta (Atlanta)
New England -3.5 At Denver (New England)
At Arizona -5.5 Houston (Houston)
At Seattle even Jacksonville (Seattle)
At Indy -3.5 Tennessee (Indy)

Monday Night Football

New York Jets -1.5 At Miami (New York Jets)

College Picks

At Tennessee -2 Georgia (Georgia)
Florida -7.5 At LSU (LSU)
Michigan State -4.5 At Illinois (Michigan State)
At Ohio State -16 Wisconsin (Wisconsin)

This is Why
Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why. While last week I did not like many of the lines, I consider this week's lines to be some of the most favorable ever. The reason is that many of the top notch NFL teams are playing against some of the worst teams in the league, and at this point in the season I don't think the odds makers can set the betting lines high enough. Accordingly, I think the smart money is to take the favorites in the following David v. Goliath games:

Minnesota -9.5 over ST. LOUIS - Minnesota should be able to throw and run all over the St. Louis defense. Conversely, Minnesota's front four should be able to overwhelm the Rams' offensive line, allowing them to keep 8 in the box to shut down Steven Jackson, their only offensive threat.

PHILLADELPHIA -15 over Tampa Bay - Josh Johnson makes his second career start. Is there any worse scenario for an inexperienced quarterback than making a start against a blitz happy team IN Philladelphia? there isn't. This one could get ugly.

NEW YORK GIANTS -16 over Oakland - Even if Eli Manning is out with plantar fasciitis the Giants should be able to run all over the Oakland defense. The worst quarterback in the league, JaMarcus Russell, meets one of the best defenses in the league...on the road. This one could could get ugly too.

Pittsburgh -10.5 over DETROIT - Even if Matt Stafford is able to start Detroit will have a rookie quarterback trying to read a complicated blitz happy defense without having practiced this week. If Daunte Culpepper starts Detroit will have a rusty quarterback who is known to have problems reading complicated defenses. This one could also get ugly.

INDY -3.5 over Tennessee - Even though Tennessee typically plays Indianapolis tight, I have given up on the Titans until they prove me wrong. Peyton Manning and the Colts are playing good football right now, and if Tennesse starts two rookie corners as expected this one will get ugly.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

NFL PICKS - Week 4

Week 3 NFL Results: 10-6
NFL Results Season to Date: 23-24

Week 3 College Football Results: 4-1
College Football Results Season to Date: 15-6

Week 3 This Is Why Results: 3-2
This is Why Results Season to Date: 7-3

Week 4 NFL Picks (winners in parentheses):

At Houston -9.5 Oakland (Houston)
Tenn -3 At Jacksonville (Tenn)
At New England -2 Balt (Balt)
Cinci -5.5 At Cleveland (Cinci)
NYG -8.5 At Kansas City (NYG)
At Chicago -10 Detroit (Detroit)
At Washington -7 Tampa Bay (Washington)
At Indy -10.5 Seattle (Indy)
At New Orleans -7 Jets (New Orleans)
Buffalo -2 At Miami (Miami)
At San Fran -9.5 St. Louis (San Fran)
Dallas -3 At Denver (Dallas)
At Pitt -6.5 San Diego (San Diego)

Monday Night Football

At Minnesota -3.5 Green Bay (Green Bay)

College Picks

Alabama -15.5 At Kentucky (Alabama)
Cincinnati -29 At Miami OH (Cincinnati)
At Iowa -21 Arkansas St. (Iowa)
At Georgia -3 LSU (LSU)
At Michigan State -2 Michigan (Michigan St.)

This is Why

Here are the pro and college lines that I would put money on, and why. For me, this is a great rivalry week with Brett Favre and Minnesota playing Green Bay on Monday Night Football, and Michigan State hosting rival Michigan. Those might not be my best money bets for the week, but I'm going to break them down in This is Why just because I want to put my money where my mouth is:

MICHIGAN STATE -2 over Michigan - Michigan State comes in a disappointing 1-3. Michigan comes in a suprising 4-0. While Michigan State's secondary has struggled, Michigan's spread offense is designed to run the ball, not pass. Michigan State will be hungry and pull out all the stops in this game. Look for Sparty to win 27-17.

Green Bay +3.5 over MINNESOTA - I don't see how Minnesota is favored in this game. Sure they are 3-0, but they beat two terrible teams in Cleveland and Detroit. Then they needed a last second miracle catch to beat San Francisco at home. In any event, Green Bay has the better quarterback and the better team. Take the points.

New York Giants -7 over KANSAS CITY - Kansas City can't stop the run or run the ball. The Giants have covered similar spreads against two bad teams with similar problems in Washington and Tampa Bay. Look for the trend to continue.

Dallas -3 over DENVER - Denver is 3-0, but still might be one of the five worst teams in the league with their wins coming on an incredibly lucky tipped pass to win at the last second over Cincinnati, as well as against two terrible Cleveland and Oakland teams. Even though they are at home, this is Denver's first real test. Look for them to fail miserably.