I’m a little disappointed in my overall record so far – only 97-63 straight up (although that is good enough for first place among the CHEZ employee pool players, it’s a full 10 back of the pool leaders). I’m a little happier with my record against the spread, which is a solid 89-64-7 so far this season. OK, here goes again…
New England (6.5) at Detroit – The Lions laid down for the Cowboys, who are nowhere near as good as the Patriots. But New England still has serious issues with pass defense. Patriots, 34-24.
Real final score – Patriots, 45-24. Well, the Lions waited until the 4th quarter to lay down. Then, boy, did they ever lay down.
New Orleans (3.5) at Dallas – The Cowboys appear to have turned things around a little under Wade Phillips. But one fluke win against the Giants and a beatdown of the terrible Lions doesn’t have me convinced yet. Saints, 36-20.
Real final score - Saints, 30-27. It looked like that blowout in the first quarter, didn’t it? I now AM convinced that Dallas is a different team than they were in the first eight games. Not that it matters to their season.
Cincinnati at New York Jets (9.5) – The Bengals are making a case that they are the worst team in football. But they’re good enough (and hopefully proud enough) to keep this one closer than TEN points. Jets, 23-17.
Real final score – Jets, 26-10. At one point, all three of the underdog teams held a lead in these Thanksgiving games. I think the length of time they held that lead speaks to the heart and calibre of those teams. And by that standard, the Bengals are worse than the Lions AND the Cowboys. Then again, they’re worse than almost every team out there, aren’t they?
Minnesota at Washington (2.5) – Who knows? How do the Vikings respond to the firing of Childress? Do they come out firing like the Cowboys did after Wade Phillips was canned? Or do they continue to act like a bunch of sissy baby whiners and lose? I will say…Redskins, 23-20.
Real final score – Vikings, 17-13. Or, maybe the Vikings will just manage to get a middling win against a middling team. And I’m very wrong.
Pittsburgh (6.5) at Buffalo – The Bills have to be feeling awfully good after coming back on the Bengals, then running away with that game. Pittsburgh, however, is NO Cincy. Steelers, 27-21.
Real final score – Steelers, 19-16 (OT). Gotta love these Bills. Lots of fight in that team.
Tennessee at Houston (2.5) – Remember when the Titans were 5-2, and the Texans were 4-2? Distant memories, at the moment…heartbreak for both these teams last week. The Titans are the ones to right the ship here. Titans, 28-27.
Real final score – Texans, 20-0. If ANYONE picked the defense of the HOUSTON TEXANS to pitch a shutout, they known NOTHING about football. And got real lucky.
Jacksonville at New York Giants (7.5) – The Jaguars are a VERY surprising team this year – you realize they are first in their division? The division with the Colts in it? And that they have won three in a row? And that the Giants have lost two in a row? And are NOT first in their division? And somehow they are still favoured by 7.5? Giants, 24-21.
Real final score – Giants, 24-20. The Giants showed a little character here – this could turn their season back around. Again. Could.
Carolina at Cleveland (11) – Imagine last year, or earlier this year, the BROWNS being favoured by ELEVEN! Against ANYONE! Well, they deserve it now. Browns, 23-10.
Real final score – Browns, 24-23. The Panthers made a real game of this, even taking the lead in the 4th. But they’re still bad.
Tampa Bay at Baltimore (7.5) – Again, a really odd point spread. The Bucs are 7-3. 4-1 on the road. The Ravens are 7-3. 4-0 at home. Tighter game than the spread predicts. Ravens, 21-18.
Real final score – Ravens, 17-10. JUST tighter than the spread predicted.
Philadelphia (3.5) at Chicago – The Bears have yet to convince me they are any good. A shutout against the Dolphins’ practice squad didn’t impress too much. Eagles, 30-17.
Real final score – Bears, 31-26. OK. The Bears are good. FINE.
Green Bay at Atlanta (2) – Too bad for the Packers they get Atlanta IN Atlanta. The Falcons just plain don’t lose at home. But Green Bay will give them a real run for it. This is the game that determines who’s best in the NFC. And I believe that’s Green Bay. Packers, 24-23.
Real final score – Falcons, 20-17. Matt Ryan just doesn’t lose at home. Sad when one penalty loses the game for you.
Miami at Oakland (3) – With the amount of injuries the Dolphins have sustained, I wouldn’t pick them against anyone at this point. Too bad, because healthy the Dolphins are vastly superior to the Raiders. Raiders, 26-18.
Real final score – Dolphins, 33-17. I guess all they need is a healthy Chad Henne, and all is OK in Dolphinland.
Kansas City (1) at Seattle – Both teams are good at home, weak on the road. The Chiefs ARE a better team, but in Seattle? Seahawks, 21-18.
Real final score – Chiefs, 42-24. Or not…Seattle could still win their division simply by beating the worst teams they face.
St. Louis at Denver (3.5) – For the second week in a row, I’m seriously thinking about taking a flyer on the Rams. Denver is awful. But then, St. Louis is awful on the road…tough call. Broncos, 24-23.
Real final score – Rams, 36-33. OK. St. Louis is better on the road than the Broncos are…at all.
San Diego at Indianapolis (3) – At Indy, I’m taking Indy. This will be the LAST loss for the Chargers this season. Colts, 27-25.
Real final score – Chargers, 36-14. OK. So the Chargers just plain aren’t going to lose again.
San Francisco (1) at Arizona - A real pick-em. Also, I would say, a real “who cares” – except that in that awful division, the winner of this game could actually be only one win out of a playoff spot! Cardinals, 34-30.
Real final score – Niners, 27-6. Awful. The Cards are simply awful. On offense and defense and special teams (one field goal block notwithstanding). And the Niners are, indeed, one win out of the division lead.
Brutal. This week, I’m 7-9 straight up, (104-72 overall.) And I’m a weak 6-10 against the spread, leaving me at 95-74-7 so far.