FIWK the NFL: Week 16

So apparently I forgot to make my picks last week. Just plum forgot. I was on vacation (who takes a vacation two weeks before Christmas?) and thought I would have time on Thursday, but alas, family, friends, games and drinks got in the way. Oh well. I think I would have done horribly anyways. But you know what happened since the last time we met? The Broncos lost and the Chargers won three in a row, including a beat down of the Ravens. It may be too little too late, but if the Broncos lose two and the Chargers win two, the Chargers win the division at 9-7. Any other situation, the Broncos have the fourth tiebreaker of record against common opponents (or the Raiders or Chiefs win the division). And also, all of a sudden, the Chargers have wild card hopes. They are still behind the Jets and Bengals, but other than head to head with the Jets, the Chargers hold most tie breakers for multiple teams tied for the last wild card spot. So this week Scott and Mik are cheering for the 49ers and the Falcons to beat the Saints, while Royce and I are cheering for the Chargers, Bills, Cardinals, Jaguars, Giants and the Chiefs. But the Chiefs losing wouldn't be particularly harmful. Isn't projecting playoff scenarios fun?

Houston (-6) over INDIANAPOLIS: The Texans win this game 86% of the time and a 6 point favorite only wins 2/3rd of the time. What? Orlovsky threw a touchdown to Reggie Wayne with 19 seconds left in the game to beat the Texans? Why was the game so close in the first place? Not so bold prediction: Arian Foster scores a touchdown. Bold prediction: Dan Orlovsky throws a touchdown to Reggie Wayne with 19 seconds left to win the game.

BUFFALO (+3) over Denver: This is not an anti-Broncos, pro-Chargers homer pick. I actually have the Bills favored by a couple points and winning outright 52% of the time. Come on Harvard!!! Not so bold prediction: Tim Tebow runs the ball. Bold prediction: Harvard is smarter than Jesus.

Arizona (+4) over CINCINNATI: This four point spread should only be three and a half points. Tons of value. I'm not even sure how many names I can think of in this game. Um, I'm pretty sure John Skelton is the current starting quarterback and he's throwing to Larry Fitzgerald. Andy Dalton would be winning the rookie of the year if Cam Newton didn't throw for 400 yards in his first two games and led the league in rushing touchdowns for a couple weeks. It also hurts him that the third best rookie is the guy catching his passes. Well hurts him in rookie of the year voting, but not in actual games. AJ Green really helps him in the real life games, which is why the torn-something in Green's shoulder could be particularly harmful. Not so bold prediction: The announcers mention AJ Green's injured shoulder a dozen times. Bold prediction: Anyone actually watches this game.

Jacksonville (+7.5) over TENNESSEE: More of a spread decision than thinking the Jaguars are the better team. AND I swear this is not another homer/hopeful pick that one of the other potential wild cards lose. Although, the more I think about it, that Chargers can't win the wild card in a tie with only the Jets. They need to finish in the lead outright, meaning the Chargers are the only 9-7 wild card team OR they need to finish in a tie with any combination of two or three teams EXCEPT the Jets alone. So do you want the Titans to win to be a third team in a tiebreaker or do you want every other team losing? Not so bold prediction: Maurice Jones-Drew has more rushing yards than Chris Johnson. Bold prediction: Chris Johnson scores 30 fantasy points.

Oakland (+1.5) over KANSAS CITY: See, I'm not making all homer picks. I swear I only have one or zero per week. Also, this line is way overrated from the Chiefs beating the Packers and the Raiders losing three games in a row, including one to those same Packers. So the Packers beat the Raiders by 30 and the Chiefs beat the Packers by 5, so obviously the Chiefs will beat the Raiders by 35? Not so bold prediction: Someone uses Arrowhead as a reason for why the Chiefs will beat the Raiders. Additional not so bold prediction: Carson Palmer turns the ball over at least once.

Miami (+9.5) over NEW ENGLAND: This should only be a 7 point spread. I wonder what the record for wins by a team that started 0-7 is? This 5-9 team should be 7.5-6.5 and in position for a wild card spot. That happens when you lose not one, but two game by exactly one point. The Dolphins and the Eagles are the only teams with losing records and positive point differentials. While the Broncos are the only team with a winning record and a negative point differential. Ok...I kind of got off track there. Not so bold prediction: Rob Gronkowski or Aaron Hernandez will score a touchdown. Bold prediction: Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez will score a touchdown.

NYJ (-3) over Nyg: This was the shortest Team A (spread) over Team B line I have ever written. In fact, my description was longer. Let's keep the analysis of two quarterbacks that I strongly dislike brief as well. The spread should be 4 or 5. They don't even deserve two predictions.

PITTSBURGH (Off(0)) over St. Louis: So I'm guessing, even though I am usually pretty bad at guessing the lines of games, that with Ben Roethlisberger playing, the Steelers would be favored by at least double digits and probably as high as 15. Without him, they will only be favored 9 or 10. Almost no matter what the spread is, I'm taking the Steelers. Not so bold prediction: Pittsburgh comes out of the locker room with decals on only one side of their helmets. Bold prediction: The Rams come out of the locker room looking like the team that lost to the Patriots in the Super Bowl...I mean, they will be wearing the same uniform. Once they start to play, they will bear no resemblance to the Greatest Show on Turf.

Minnesota (+6.5) over WASHINGTON: I'm only half way? I want to call this game the Fortress of Sucktitude, but it's not really a place. but Sucktitude is the right word. Moving on from a game that cannot currently impact any potential playoff team.

Tampa Bay (+7.5) over CAROLINA: The Panthers beat the Bucs 38-19 three weeks ago. Seriously, it was December 4th. You can look it up and everything. So I'm predicting something totally different. I mean, Carolina should only be favored by you have half a point of value. So let's take a touchdown away from the Panthers and give it to the Bucs and all of a sudden you have Carolina winning 31-26. Sure, that sounds about right. Not so bold prediction: Cam Newton throws or runs for a touchdown. Bold prediction: Carolina wins 31-26 exactly. Trust me, if I get this exactly, you'll hear about it.

BALTIMORE (-13) over Cleveland: Um, Baltimore is at home? Not so bold prediction: Ray Rice helps me win a fantasy championship this week. Bold prediction: Anyone else playing in this game helps anyone win a fantasy championship. With Anquan Boldin out...I guess Torrey Smith could help someone.

San Diego (+2.5) over DETROIT: Three weeks ago I was just kind of waiting around for the Chargers to be eliminated from the playoffs. Now, I've spent way, WAY too much time analyzing the different scenarios that could lead to the Chargers making the playoffs. Way too much time.

DALLAS (-2) over Philadelphia: If the Eagles win and the Giants lose and something else, the Eagles could still win the NFC East at 8-8. I thought this division was supposed to be good.

San Francisco (-2.5) over SEATTLE: Technically, the Seahawks and Cardinals can still win out and get some help from the Lions and the Falcons and make the playoffs. This was supposed to be the worst division and going in to Week 16, they could have three teams make the playoffs, while the AFC West and NFC East could still have 8-8 division champs. And yes, these three scenarios could all play out simultaneously, none contradict any other.

Chicago (+13) over GREEN BAY: Too many points.

Atlanta (+6.5) over NEW ORLEANS: Go Drew Brees!!! You can carry my dad and I to fantasy championships in separate leagues.

Yeah, It's Christmas and I'm going home. You can probably tell that I was getting a little shorter there towards the end.

Merry Christmas!!


  1. $50 on Hou, Buf, Oak, SF. $20 on Mia, NYJ, Bal.

  2. I tweeted this a few days ago:
    I'm calling it right now; Kyle Orton will be the savior of the Chargers season.

  3. So, there's no way San Francisco wins and doesn't cover 2.5, right? Even a field goal contest will be decided by three...right?

    Wrong. I go 3-4 and down $20 on the week.

  4. I hate the Chargers and I hate football. I hate everything. I also forgot to come in and make my picks, meaning unless I have an amazing week 17 I am boned as far as getting positive on money. I am currently at $850.

    That San Francisco line was spectacularly brutal.

  5. I have no idea where I stand at this point. BUT, I did find the Niners -1.5 at a few online books, and made at particularly satisfying bet at one of them. Go extra half-point!