Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Week 17 Picks...

Washington (+9.5) over PHILADELPHIA
Detroit (+6.5) over GREEN BAY
MINNESOTA (+1.5) over Chicago
Carolina (+10.5) over NEW ORLEANS
NEW ENGLAND (-11.5) over Buffalo
Tampa Bay (+10.5) over ATLANTA
Pittsburgh (-7.5) over CLEVELAND
ARIZONA (-2.5) over Seattle
DENVER (-3.5) over Kansas City
NY Giants (-2.5) over Dallas


The Jets need a win, and losses by Tennessee, Cincinnati, and Oakland.

So let's file these under wishful thinking:
HOUSTON (+2.5) over Tennessee
NY Jets (+1.5) over MIAMI:
Baltimore (-2.5) over CINCINNATI
San Diego (+3.5) over OAKLAND

and two for the Andrew Luck sweepstakes:
Indianapolis (+4.5) over JACKSONVILLE: Colts play to win for Peyton Manning.
San Francisco (-10.5) over ST. LOUIS: ..and so ends the Sam Bradford era in St. Louis. Ironically, Bradford won't even make the start to defend his job--which is now up to Kellen Clemens...yikes!

TOTAL PICKS: 134-106* (9-7 last week)
MY VALUE PICKS: 48-49 (0-6 last week)

*Note: 8-8, 12-4, 11-5, 8-8, 6-7, 7-6, 9-4, 3-10, 8-6, 9-7, 9-5, 7-9, 11-5, 10-6, 7-9, 9-7 = 134-106

Monday, December 26, 2011

Week 16 Notes...


Down 16-12 with 1:56 remaining, Dan Orlovsky drove the Colts 78 yards, capped by a 1 yard touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne with 19 seconds remaining for the 19-16 victory. The key play on the drive was a 34 yard pass to Wayne on 3rd down to get the Colts within striking distance for the go-ahead score.

Down 13-6 with 2:57 to go, Kyle Orton led the Chiefs 80 yards, capped by a 3 yard touchdown pass to Dwayne Bowe to tie the game at 13. After getting the ball back with 19 seconds remaining, Orton quickly threw two passes, one for 25, the next for 11, to get Kansas City into field goal position to win the game. However, Ryan Succop's 49 yard attempt was blocked. The Chiefs went on to lose in overtime because...

Carson Palmer threw a 53 yard strike to Darrius Heyward-Bey to set up the game-winning 36 yard field goal by Sebastian Janikowski.

Up 27-24 with 1:35 remaining, Tom Brady converted a 3rd and 5 pass to Wes Welker for 6 yards to ice the game for the Patriots over the Dolphins.

Down 17-16 with just over 5 minutes remaining, Alex Smith threw a 41 yard pass to Michael Crabtree to set up what would be the game-winning 39 yard field goal by David Akers.


Down 23-16 with under three minutes to go, John Skelton threw an incomplete pass on 4th down for a loss of downs. Skelton got another opportunity with 48 seconds and no timeouts, but ultimately ran out of time, throwing the last play over the middle, instead of a Hail-Mary attempt.

Down 20-14 with 2:24 from their own 8 yard line, Mark Sanchez was sacked for a safety for the loss to the Giants.

Down 33-26 with 55 seconds and one timeout from their own 36, Rex Grossman got Washington into position for one last Hail-Mary attempt, but it fell incomplete for the loss to the Vikings.

Down 20-13 with 4:03 remaining on 4th and 5, Seneca Wallace threw an out-pass to Peyton Hillis, which had no chance of converting of a 1st down for the Browns loss.

Down 19-17 with just over a minute remaining, Tarvaris Jackson fumbled the ball on San Francisco's 48 yard line. Jackson got another opportunity with 41 seconds left from their own 26 yard line, but Jackson threw an incomplete pass on 4th and 2 for the loss of downs and game for Seattle.


1. Aaron Rodgers: 283 yards, 5 touchdowns, 142.7 passer rating
2. Matthew Stafford: 373 yards, 3 touchdowns, 137.6 passer rating
3. Drew Brees: 307 yards, 4 touchdowns, 2 interceptions, 96.8 passer rating
4. Michael Vick: 293 yards, 2 touchdowns, 107.9 passer rating
5. Cam Newton: 171 yards, 3 touchdowns, 142.4 passer rating

28. Seneca Wallace: 147 yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception, 66.1 passer rating + non-clutch performance
29. Blaine Gabbert: 198 yards, 1 interception, 53.5 passer rating
30. Kellen Clemens: 91 yards, 49.1 passer rating
31. Tim Tebow: 185 yards, 1 touchdown, 4 interceptions, 35.4 passer rating
32. Tony Romo: 0 yards, 39.6 passer rating + injured

QB RECORDS VS. SPREAD (actual records in parenthesis)

Elite QBs: 53-48 (70-31)

Very Good QBs: 30-44 (39-35)

Average QBs: 53-39 (45-43)

Unknown QBs: 38-39 (32-45)

Bad QBs: 20-15 (19-16)

Backups: 46-55 (34-68)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Week 16 Picks...

Houston (+5.5) over INDIANAPOLIS
Cleveland (+13.5) over BALTIMORE
Jacksonville (+7.5) over TENNESSEE
Oakland (+0.5) over KANSAS CITY
PITTSBURGH (-15.5) over St. Louis
Minnesota (+6.5) over WASHINGTON
CAROLINA (-7.5) over Tampa Bay
Philadelphia (+2.5) over DALLAS
SEATTLE (+2.5) over San Francisco
GREEN BAY (-12.5) over Chicago


Denver (-2.5) over BUFFALO: Tim Tebow on Christmas Eve? With a win most likely ensuring a playoff spot? Even the devil would consider this is a lock.

NEW ENGLAND (-9.5) over Miami: The Patriots need two wins to ensure home-field throughout the playoffs. Translation: They will try to run up the score.

Arizona (-4.5) over CINCINNATI: Do you know John "Helter" Skelton is 6-3 career starting for the Cardinals, while Arizona is 6-15 when he doesn't start? This game could go either way, but I like the points.

NEW YORK JETS (-2.5) over NY Giants: Homer pick.

San Diego (+2.5) over DETROIT: After blowing out Baltimore, Philip Rivers is now 23-2 in December. Both teams need a win desperately, but I trust Rivers more than a Jim Schwartz coached Lions.

Atlanta (+6.5) over NEW ORLEANS: In the Matt Ryan era, this game has always been close. Out of the 7 games played, Atlanta has only won twice, but they have only lost by more than 7 once. Expect another close one.

TOTAL PICKS: 125-99* (7-9 last week)
MY VALUE PICKS: 48-43 (3-3 last week)

*Note: 8-8, 12-4, 11-5, 8-8, 6-7, 7-6, 9-4, 3-10, 8-6, 9-7, 9-5, 7-9, 11-5, 10-6, 7-9 = 125-99

Monday, December 19, 2011

Week 15 Notes..


Down 27-21 with 2:14 remaining, Matthew Stafford led the Lions 98 yards, capped by a 6 yard touchdown pass to Calvin Johnson. Stafford threw for 391 yards and 4 touchdowns, and overcome a late 13 point 4th quarter deficit to put Detroit in great shape to make the playoffs.

Tied at 17 in overtime, John Skelton threw a 32 yard pass to Larry Fitzgerald to set up the game-winning 22 yard field goal by Jay Feely. Skelton is 4-1 as a starter this year, and Arizona is back in the playoff mix at 7-7.


Down 28-27 with about 20 seconds left and one timeout, Carson Palmer took an awful sack, forcing Oakland to use their last timeout. Because of that, Oakland wasn't able to get legit field goal positioning, and Sebastian Janikowski's 65 yard attempt was blocked. Also, on the previous drive, Carson Palmer could've sealed the win for Oakland but overshot his receiver Chaz Schilens on a 3rd down.

Tied at 17 with just over 5 minutes remaining, Seneca Wallace had three possessions (including one in overtime) to win the game, but punted on each possession. Wallace finished the game 2-7 for 33 yards, but more importantly 0-3 on 3rd downs.


1. Drew Brees: 412 yards, 5 touchdowns, 149.2 passer rating
2. Matthew Stafford: 391 yards, 4 touchdowns, 105.5 passer rating + clutch performance
3. Tom Brady: 320 yards, 2 touchdowns, 117.3 passer rating
4. Tony Romo: 249 yards, 3 touchdowns, 133.9 passer rating
5. Matt Ryan: 224 yards, 3 touchdowns, 137.3 passer rating

28. Blaine Gabbert: 141 yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception, 70.5 passer rating
29. Matt Hasselbeck: 223 yards, 2 interceptions, 60.7 passer rating
30. TJ Yates: 212 yards, 2 interceptions, 56.5 passer rating
31. Eli Manning: 257 yards, 3 interceptions, 45.5 passer rating
32. Caleb Hanie: 111 yards, 1 touchdown, 3 interceptions, 33.3 passer rating

QB RECORDS VS. SPREAD (actual records in parenthesis)

Elite QBs: 50-45 (66-29)

Very Good QBs: 29-40 (37-32)

Average QBs: 52-36 (44-40)

Unknown QBs: 35-39 (29-45)

Bad QBs: 19-14 (17-16)

Backups: 39-50 (30-60)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Week 15 Picks...


ATLANTA (-11.5) over Jacksonville
TAMPA BAY (+6.5) over Dallas
Washington (+6.5) over NY GIANTS:

MINNESOTA (+6.5) over New Orleans
BUFFALO (+1.5) over Miami
Tennessee (-6.5) over INDIANAPOLIS

Carolina (+6.5) over HOUSTON
Detroit (-0.5) over OAKLAND
ARIZONA (-6.5) over Cleveland
DENVER (+6.5) over New England


Cincinnati (-6.5) over ST. LOUIS: St. Louis can't score, and Sam Bradford looks like he'll be sitting out (even though with the way he's playing, does it really matter?)

Seattle (+3.5) over CHICAGO: Essentially a loser goes home game! Seattle is super frisky, and Caleb Hanie is horrible. Plus the extra half point!

Green Bay (-13.5) over KANSAS CITY: Green Bay has only won 4 games by more than 13.5 pts this season. However, the possibility of Kyle Orton or Rick Stanzi (also an interim coach) going against Green Bay is too hard to pass up.

New York Jets (+2.5) over PHILADELPHIA: Because the Jets absolutely need to win this game. I know the Jets have never (in the history of the franchise!) beaten Philadelphia, but does that really matter?

SAN DIEGO (+2.5) over Baltimore: I think a new rule should be put into place that we can only bet on Philip Rivers starting in December, where's he 22-2 in his career. Let's ride it!

Pittsburgh (+2.5) over SAN FRANCISCO: Steelers are actually good, whereas I think 49ers are fraudulent. Alex Smith going against the Steelers defense screams disaster.

TOTAL PICKS: 118-90* (10-6 last week)
MY VALUE PICKS: 45-40 (3-3 last week)

*Note: 8-8, 12-4, 11-5, 8-8, 6-7, 7-6, 9-4, 3-10, 8-6, 9-7, 9-5, 7-9, 11-5, 10-6 = 118-90

Washington Post: Is Sam Bradford Beginning to Look Like a Bust?

In case you missed it, I wrote an article this week for The Washington Post's Website wondering if Sam Bradford is beginning to look like a bust. You can check out the article here.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Week 14 Notes...


Up 7-3 with 3:05 remaining, Ben Roethlisberger threw a touchdown pass to Antonio Brown, which went 79 yards, to ice the win for the Steelers, 14-3.

Down 19-13 with 2:33 remaining, rookie TJ Yates led the Texans 80 yards for the game-winning score, capped by a 6 yard pass to Kevin Walter with 8 seconds left. Yates was 6 for 10 on the drive, for 51 yards, with a 17 yard scramble.

Up 24-23 with five minutes remaining, Matt Ryan hit Julio Jones over the middle for 75 yards for the eventual 31-23 victory.

Down 10-0 with 4:34 to go, Tim Tebow drove the Broncos 63 yards in 2:26, capped by a 10 touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas to cut Chicago's lead to 10-7. Then, on Denver's next possession, with 53 seconds to go, from their own 20 and no timeouts, Tim Tebow led Denver 39 yards to set up the 59 yard game-tying Matt Prater field goal to force overtime. Then in overtime, Tebow drove the Broncos 33 yards to set up the game-winning 51 yard fiel goal by Prater for Tebow's 7th win in 8 starts.

Down 34-22 with five minutes to go, Eli Manning quickly led the Giants 80 yards in 2 minutes to (capped by a 8 touchdown pass to Jake Ballard) cut the lead to 34-29. Then with 2:12 remaining, Eli Manning drove the Giants 58 yards for what ended up being the game-winning touchdown (and two point conversion) to save the Giants season.

Down 37-34 with 46 seconds to go and no timeouts, Tony Romo quickly drove the Cowboys 47 yards to set up the game-tying field goal. However, that 47 yard attempt was blocked for the Cowboys loss. It also should be noted, Romo missed Miles Austin on a wide open pass which would have sealed the game when the Cowboys had the 34-29 lead.


Down 7-3 with under four minutes remaining, a concussed Colt McCoy threw an interception on the Steelers 16 yard line for the eventual loss.

Down 34-28, after driving the Vikings 79 yards down to the Lions 1 yard line, with 9 seconds to go, Joe Webb took an awful sack and lost the ball on a fumble for the Vikings loss.

Down 22-17, after driving the Titans 75 yards in a minute down to the Saints 5 yard line with seconds remaining, rookie Jake Locker threw an incomplete pass, and then took a bad sack on the last play of the game for the Titans loss.

Down 34-27 with less than a minute to go in the Patriots redzone, after getting a touchdown pass nullified by a penalty, Rex Grossman threw the game-losing interception, which bounced off receiver Santonio Moss.

Down 31-23 with under 4 minutes to go, after driving the Panthers 53 yards to the Falcons 27 yard line, Cam Newton threw four straight incompletions for the loss of downs, and eventual loss of game.

Down 21-19 with 2:51 left from their own 32 yard line, Alex Smith threw two straight incompletions for the loss of downs and loss of game.


1. Matt Ryan: 320 yards, 4 touchdowns, 120.5 passer rating + clutch performance
2. Tom Brady: 357 yards, 3 touchdowns, 1 interception, 107.6 passer rating
3. Drew Brees: 337 yards, 2 touchdowns, 110.0 passer rating
4. Eli Manning: 400 yards, 2 touchdowns, 1 interception, 90.7 passer rating + clutch performance
5. Philip Rivers: 240 yards, 3 touchdowns, 123.3 passer rating

28. Carson Palmer: 245 yards, 1 touchdown, 4 interceptions, 42.4 passer rating
29. Matt Hasselbeck: 44 yards, 87.8 passer rating + injury
30. Christian Ponder: 115 yards, 2 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 60.7 passer rating + benched
31. Josh Freeman: 181 yards, 2 interceptions, 43.9 passer rating
32. Ryan Fitzpatrick: 176 yards, 2 interceptions, 31.0 passer rating

QB RECORDS VS. SPREAD (actual records in parenthesis)

Elite QBs: 45-43 (61-27)

Very Good QBs: 28-36 (36-28)

Average QBs: 49-35 (41-39)

Unknown QBs: 32-39 (26-45)

Bad QBs: 18-13 (16-15)

Backups: 36-42 (27-52)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Week 14 Picks...


PITTSBURGH (-14.5) over Cleveland
Minnesota (+7.5) over DETROIT
Philadelphia (+3.5) over MIAMI
Houston (+2.5) over CINCINNATI
Tampa Bay (-1.5) over JACKSONVILLE
BALTIMORE (-16.5) over Indianapolis
New Orleans (-3.5) over TENNESSEE
GREEN BAY (-10.5) over Oakland
SAN DIEGO (-6.5) over Buffalo
NY Giants (+3.5) over DALLAS


Atlanta (-2.5) over CAROLINA: I got burned by Matt Ryan by last week. Also, do you know Cam Newton is 7-5 against the spread this year vs. Matt Ryan's 6-6? However, this is a must-win game for Atlanta, and I think they'll win by at least three.

New England (-8.5) over WASHINGTON: 7 of New England's 9 wins have been by more than this line. Plus, New England will be looking to wrap up their division and might not phone it in like the ending of the Indianapolis game, in which they let the Colts back door cover.

NY JETS (-9.5) over Kansas City: I think this will be a good day for the Jets: Bengals, Titans and Raiders all lose, and the Jets blow out Tyler Palko and the Chiefs. Thinking a 31-9 final.

San Francisco (-3.5) over ARIZONA: I hate to say this, but Alex Smith and co. have been ridiculously reliable this year. How much you say? to the tune of a 11-1 record against the spread. I know Arizona is somewhat frisky, and they're playing at home--but San Francisco has been methodical, and I can't see Kevin "Kolb Salad" tearing up this 49ers defense.

DENVER (-3.5) over Chicago: Originally had GB -10.5 in this spot, but couldn't resist going against Caleb Hanie on the road without Matt Forte. Could see this as a statement game for Tebow & co. along the lines of 28-6.

SEATTLE (-6.5) over St. Louis: At 5-7, Seattle is still thinking playoffs, with a winnable schedule down the stretch. Plus they're playing at home, and there's a godo chance that Tom Brandstater (who!?!?!) will start for the Rams. This is my lock of the week.

TOTAL PICKS: 108-84* (11-5 last week)
MY VALUE PICKS: 42-37 (3-3 last week)

*Note: 8-8, 12-4, 11-5, 8-8, 6-7, 7-6, 9-4, 3-10, 8-6, 9-7, 9-5, 7-9, 11-5 = 97-79

Monday, December 5, 2011


We’re not too far away from playoff time in the NFL, which means if you haven’t done so yet it may be time to head to a cable website like to make sure that you will have all of the necessary programming to watch all of the action as the season winds down. The playoff picture remains somewhat unclear after 13 weeks, meaning that there is plenty of drama left to come, and we should see some exciting finishes.

Here are a few of the highlights from this Sunday’s games.

Despite a strong test from the home team Giants, the Packers were able to earn yet another win, improving to 12-0 behind 369 yards and 4 touchdowns from Aaron Rodgers. The Giants, at 6-6, have two remaining games verse the Dallas Cowboys--which will most likely determine the Giants playoff hopes.

The 49ers’ impressive season continued with a 26-0 romp over the woeful St. Louis Rams, clinching the NFC West for San Francisco. Despite a hard-fought loss to the Ravens in Week 12, the 49ers continue to play well, and with coach Jim Harbaugh- look like a serious playoff threat.

The Ravens kept pace in a brutal AFC North by taking care of the Browns, 24-10. Ray Rice had a monster game, posting 204 yards on 29 carries with 1 touchdown, as the Ravens guaranteed themselves another week atop the division standings, at 9-3.

The Steelers matched the Ravens atop the division, and also knocked the Bengals back a step with a 35-7 victory. Ben Roethlisberger and Rashard Mendenhall had 2 touchdowns apiece, and the Steelers ran their record to 9-3, tied for the division lead despite two losses to Baltimore this year.

In one of the most talked about games of the weekend, Tim Tebow led the Broncos to victory yet again, squeezing by the Vikings in Minnesota, 35-32. Down 3 with the ball and under 3 minutes remaining, Tebow led an impressive drive that included a 40 yard completion and set the Broncos up for a game-tying field goal. The Denver defense then promptly picked off Christian Ponder, leading to a game-winning field goal that kept the Broncos tied for the AFC West lead with Oakland at 7-5.

The Bears’ misfortune continued – after being on a rather impressive run up until Jay Cutler was injured, Chicago is now no guarantee whatsoever to make the playoffs. Sunday didn’t help, as the Chiefs came to Chicago and won 10-3, pushing the Bears back to 7-5 and keeping them in a tight battle with Detroit for second in the NFC North behind the unbeaten Packers.

Houston Texans: Just Stick With TJ Whats-His Face

A little late, but I wrote an article last week for The Washington Post's Website about Houston shuffling for a quarterback after losing their other two quarterbacks for the season. You can check out the article here.

Week 13 Notes...


Down 32-29, Tim Tebow threw a 40 yard pass to Demaryius Thomas to put the Broncos in field position for a game-tying field goal to force overtime. However, after a Ponder interception, the Broncos ended up kicking the game-winning field goal on their next possession as time expired for Tebow's sixth win in seven starts.

Down 16-13 with five minutes to go, Mark Sanchez threw a 30 yard touchdown pass to Santonio Holmes, which capped a 56 yard drive for the Jets for the 20-16 lead. The Jets went on to win this crucial game by a score of 34-19.

Down 35-27 with 3:34 to go, Eli Manning led the Giants 69 yards, capped by a two yard touchdown pass to Hakeem Nicks (plus a two point conversion) to tie the game with Green Bay at 35 with 58 seconds to go. However, the Giants lost in regulation because...

Aaron Rodgers drove Green Bay 68 yards in 59 seconds to set up the game-winning 30 yard field goal by Mason Crosby for the Packers. Rodgers had four touchdowns in the game. It should also be noted Rodgers threw a touchdown to take a 8 point lead with less than 4 minutes remaining.

Tied at 13 with 2:54 to go, Tony Romo led the Cowboys 37 yards to set up a potential game-winning field goal. However, Dallas had two huge brainfarts: one being not calling a time out after a completed pass with 20+ seconds to go, letting the clock go down to 7 seconds (losing about two plays before a field goal attempt), and then Jason Garrett called a timeout as Dan Bailey kicked the game-winner. That timeout resulted in Dan Bailey missing the 49 yard field goal on the ensuing play, forcing overtime, which the Cowboys ultimately lost because...

Kevin Kolb hit LaRod Stephens-Howling, which Stephens-Howling took 52 yards for the game-winning touchdown in overtime.


Down 23-17 with 1:02 remaining from their own 15 yard line, Ryan Fitzpatrick drove Buffalo 36 yards before throwing four straight incompletions for the loss of downs and loss of game.

Down 10-3 with under 5 minutes to go, with a 1st and 1o on Kansas City's 13 yard line, Caleb Hanie threw a horrible interception. Then again under three to go, Hanie had another opportunity with the ball on their own 47 yard line, Hanie took two sacks, and threw two incompletions for the loss of downs and eventual loss of game. Hanie finished the game with 3 interceptions and a 23.8 passer rating. Yikes.

Tied at 32 with 1:33 left from their own 20 yard line, Christian Ponder threw a horrible interception, which set up Denver's game-winning field goal for the Vikings loss.

Down 20-16 with just over 4 minutes remaining, Rex Grossman sacked and fumbled the ball, which set up a Jets touchdown to put the game out of reach for Washington. Grossman finished the game 19 for 46 passing.

Down 17-10 with 2:35 left, Matt Ryan threw an incomplete pass on 4th and 6 on the Texans 25 yard line. Ryan got one more opportunity with 59 seconds to go, driving the Falcons to the Texans 30 yard line. However, two hail-mary attempts failed for the loss.


1. Aaron Rodgers: 369 yards, 4 touchdowns, 1 interception, 106.2 passer rating + clutch performance
2. Drew Brees: 342 yards, 3 touchdowns, 129.6 passer rating
3. Philip Rivers: 294 yards, 3 touchdowns, 146.1 passer rating
4. Alex Smith: 274 yards, 2 touchdowns, 142.3 passer rating
5. Tom Brady: 289 yards, 2 touchdowns, 114.9 passer rating

28. Colt McCoy: 192 yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception, 63.0 passer rating
29. Rex Grossman: 221 yards, 1 interception, 47.5 passer rating + non-clutch performance
30. AJ Feeley: 156 yards, 1 interception, 58.1 passer rating
31. Vince Young: 208 yards, 1 touchdown, 4 interceptions, 52.7 passer rating
32. Caleb Hanie: 133 yards, 3 interceptions, 23.8 passer rating + non-clutch performance

QB RECORDS VS. SPREAD (actual records in parenthesis)

Elite QBs: 40-41 (54-27)

Very Good QBs: 26-33 (33-26)

Average QBs: 47-34 (40-37)

Unknown QBs: 30-35 (24-41)

Bad QBs: 18-11 (16-13)

Backups: 31-38 (24-46)