Well, that wasn't pretty. I'd been fair good about avoiding the awful weeks that just destroy an overall record, but with weather playing a role, I wasn't able to withstand an entire season of the law of averages, with Week 15 definitely bringing me much closer to .500 than I would have hoped to be at this point.
Regardless, here I am again picking Sunday games on Wednesday, which I'm sure doesn't help matters. But those are just excuses. I'm here to make picks, and that's what I'm going to do!
As always, spreads are found here.
Pittsburgh (-8.5) at St. Louis - Yes, the Steelers are struggling, and yes, if Fred Taylor can run all over them, what will Steven Jackson do? But it's still the Steelers, who are now fighting for the division, against the Rams, who are just playing out the string. The Steelers are a better team, and they tend to perform when in the national spotlight, even when that spotlight is only seen by a handful of people on the NFL Network.
Dallas (-11) at Carolina - I was struggling with this one because of Tony Romo's thumb. Does anybody even know who the backup on Dallas is? Anybody? I had to look it up myself... It's Brad Johnson. Now if he sees the field, this pick can't be taken seriously, but if Romo's good to go, then they should take care of Carolina. I'll blame last week more on Jessica Simpson than anything. It's fun to blame her for stuff...
Cincinnati (+2.5) vs Cleveland - The Bengals pretty much ruined my spoiler label when they laid an egg against the 49ers last week. Not that they were spoiling anything in San Francisco, but damn, how do you lose to that team? Well, they're back at home this week playing their division rivals who are still battling for the division. I'm still not sold on the second half of the season from these Browns though. Jamal Lewis has shown more life than I expected, but I just don't trust them at this point.
Green Bay (-9) at Chicago - With home field advantage on the line, the Packers will show no mercy against the only team to beat Green Bay on their home field this season. The Bears are woeful, and that's being kind. Kyle Orton vs. Brett Favre. Wow...
Houston (+7.5) at Indianapolis - The Texans come in rested and rolling after their Thursday victory against the Broncos. I don't think they'll win this game, but the Colts have been doing just enough to get by, playing a lot of games closer than I would have expected. Their record against the spread isn't lights out, so I think the Texans keep it close.
Kansas City (+5) at Detroit - This just feels like a field goal game to me. Whatever the score ends up to be, however, I have no intention of watching this contest. Both teams had promising starts only to see themselves self-destruct into the atrocious teams we'll see on Sunday...
New England (-22.5) vs Miami - The Patriots haven't been covering much these last few weeks since the spreads have gone to NCAA-levels, but at some point, the Patriots are going to reassert themselves. I'm thinking it'll be here, where the Dolphins no longer have anything to play for, now that their date with history has been called off.
Buffalo (+3) vs New York Giants - I may give Dick Jauron a hard time, but he always has his players ready to play, even when there's nothing left to play for. The Giants are reeling, as they tend to do when the temperature drops, and playing their upstate neighbor, if you assume the Giants are actually from New York, isn't going to stop the decent.
Jacksonville (-13) vs Oakland - Oakland's only weapon, Justin Fargas, is out for the rest of the year. That's not a good thing. The Jaguars are coming off a big victory but I don't see a letdown for these guys, as they're closing in on the top wild card spot. Am I starting to believe in the Jaguars? What is the world coming to?!
New Orleans (-3) vs Philadelphia - Gutsy game by the Eagles against the Cowboys last week. I should have seen that coming as the Eagles typically play Dallas tough. And great decision by Brian Westbrook, even if it may have cost some fantasy players a playoff victory. But now going against the Saints, who still have some playoff aspirations, I can't see the Eagles holding the New Orleans offense down like it did Dallas', unless of course, Drew Brees starts dating Ashlee Simpson...
Minnesota (-6.5) vs Washington - I'm still riding the Vikings bandwagon all the way to the playoffs. The Redskins took care of the sliding Giants last week, but now in the dome up in Minnesota, I don't see Todd Collins faring as well, and the Vikings defense is strong enough to contain Clinton Portis.
Arizona (-10) vs Atlanta - These next two games both show up as "no-line" and I'm not entirely sure why. I'll check back later in the week, but no matter what the spread is, I think both of these games are going to be blowouts in favor of the home teams... Boy, was I wrong about the Falcons. They just pretty much folded up shop for the season against the Bucs, didn't they. I see no reason why that won't happen again this week.
Seattle (-10.5) vs Baltimore - The Ravens loss was another one I should have seen coming. I mean, everybody knew that was Miami's best chance at a victory. It just seemed too easy, didn't it? Ugh, that's the hardest thing I've had to deal with while making all these picks this season. The obvious pick... I seem to talk myself out of it more often than not.
(I just updated the spreads for the last two games. Don't feel like writing new descriptions though.)
Tennessee (-9) vs New York Jets - The Jets pretty much just completed their season by not getting absolutely embarrassed by the Patriots last week. What more do they have to play for? Nothing? Sounds about right... The Titans haven't been impressing me lately, but against the lifeless Jets, they'll win handily at home.
Tampa Bay (-7) at San Francisco - No way the 49ers win two in a row. It just can't happen. I don't care that it's already happened this season, it's just not happening. The Bucs continue to play solid football, which is something not often seem in San Francisco of late. They'll handle the 49ers easily as they fine tune before the probable rest of some players before the playoffs.
San Diego (-8) vs Denver - Another "obvious" game I should have picked differently last week was the Broncos game. I've known all year that they play well at home, awful on the road. How hard is that to figure out? Well, I missed it, and they got crushed by the Texans. Not making the same mistake this week, as the Chargers are starting to find their groove before the playoffs kick in. Their quest, get in Indy's half of the bracket...
Last Week: 5-11