NFL 2011 – Week Five Picks

“Super Wynner Contest” Week 4 Recap

  • G-Dub has been quite vocal around the Wynner’s mansion this weekend, taunting all three of the other competitors with weak statements like “I’ m heads and tails above you three.” And he wants me to change his name to Flip Wynner. He’s been unbearable!
  • Yeah, I get it, I have been horrible this season and I am being soundly defeated by random luck. My defense, it takes a few weeks for power rankings to be fully effective. Yeah, that’s it.
  • The good news – I passed Juana and Megan, who are circling the drain worse than A-Rod’s “True Yankee” status.

Contestant

Last Week

Record

G-Dub

10-6

34-27-3 (.555)

Colin Wynner

6-10

29-32-3 (.477)

Juana Wynner

4-12

28-33-3 (.461)

Megan Wynner

7-9

26-35-3 (.430)

 

SuperContest Week 4 Recap

  • Picks: Lions, Vikings, Texans, Cardinals and Jets
  • A quick log of the early games – Lions, Texans and Vikings
    • Great start! All three of my teams get the ball to begin the game, any chance I can be up by a combined 21-0 in about 10 minutes? Maybe not, Houston fumbles the kickoff fortunately the Texans get back on top of it to regain possession; unfortunately a penalty moves them to inside their own 10 to start the opening drive; I am about to text a buddy to let him know the Texans are not covering today.
    • Oh man, I nailed this Texans game, the Steelers are not good at all – 18 play, 11 minute drive for the Texans to go up 7-0, the rout is on!
    • Minnesota leads 7-3, but Detroit is getting crushed, if not for a goal-line stand the Lions would be down 14-0; the Cowboys are trying to one-up the Eagles in the inefficient plays inside the opponents 10 category
    • End of the first quarter in Houston Texans have the ball back and lead 7-0, not worrying about that game at all.
    • Halftime in Houston – 10-0, but it should be much worse, the Texans block a field goal at the end of the half and return it for a touchdown, but some d-bag blocks a Steelers player in the back, behind the play no less, and it gets called back. This game feels so “Texans” to me, you know the kind of game they totally dominate yet find a way to lose.
    • More fun at halftime – Dallas crushing Detroit 20-3, proving that injuries to an opponent can be offset by bringing your “D” game; Minnesota is also flaking on me – down 9-7 at half; I text a buddy to whine about going 0-3 in the early games
    • The Steelers take the opening kickoff, burn 8 minutes and move into cover range; knew it.
    • So, much for the Lions coming back in the second half; now 27-3 in a game that I have written off as a loss.
    • The good news Minesota pulls into a 10-9, uh, now down 12-10; that was fast. Yup, next stop 0-3. Demoralizing! I knew I should have pulled the “REVERSE EM”, where before I send my picks, I reverse all of them.
    • More bad news in Houston, somehow the Steelers have now tied the game at 10-10, here comes the Texans 13-10 win. Good for them, bad for me (-3.5).
    • Detroit can do no right on offense, but their defense picks up a touchdown, which gives me a twinge of hope in that game, just 17 points to tie with about 21 minutes to play.
    • Houston comes right back down the field on that over-rated, old Steeler defense; capped off with a 40 yard TD run by my new favorite player, Arian Foster. They just need to keep the Steelers out of the end zone for the cover. I decide this will be a win.
    • You know what – I might go 3-0, Detroit just returned another interception for a touchdown, now a 10 point game with plenty of time remaining. Hopefully the Lions offense will wake up and start producing
    • Remember that 3-0 thought – what was I thinking, Minnesota is now down 22-10, that’s a loss and Detroit is down 30-17, still a chance but slim
    • Houston wins in a game that ends well before the other two, so I am batting a 1.000 right now; sweet!
    • Megatron makes the Detroit game a lot more interesting as he catches a TD to bring them with 6 points
    • I wish I was getting more than 1 point in the Detroit game, I can see them taking a 31-30 lead, but eventually losing 33-31
    • Now it’s getting crazy, Romo just threw another interception setting the Lions up in Dallas territory trailing 30-27 and the Vikings are down 22-17 but driving

    • Chiefs D-line “Wait, is it the 4th quarter? Protect your balls!”

      Megatron again – Detroit 34-30! One of the luckier covers, if they hang on, I’ve ever had.

    • More good news, I flip to Minnesota and they have a first down at the KC 41 with 2 minutes left. The bad news Donovan McNabb is the quarterback, but they might have enough time to run the ball with AP and Harvin for the winning score.
    • Pretty typical McNabb, two consecutive passes knocked down by the Chiefs defensive line, well I guess if you consider getting hit in the facemask knocking the ball down. 3rd down features the signature McNabb bounce pass. I forgot how bad this guy is at leading a team late in a game; I seriously would have called a draw play to AP on 4th and 10. If it didn’t work, when asked about it in the post-game press-conference I would have defended it with “Did you see the previous three plays? Based on that data, I thought we had better chance running the football.” McNabb’s 4th down pass would have been complete if somehow the Vikings could sneak the NFL Films sound guy onto the field, yeah, the pass air-mailed the intended receiver. 1-1!
    • If I am playing against Jason Witten in fantasy, I am going punt my dog like Baxter in Anchorman. Detroit is allowing the Cowboys to waltz down the field without contesting the middle of the field.
    • Whew, huge sack by the Lions; and on 4 and 20 Romo throws a short pass to Felix Jones for 8 yards!?! The funny thing about the play – Romo runs up to the line like he is going to spike the ball! He is going to get crucified in Dallas this week! 2-1
    • I felt great about going to 2-1, as though the worm was turning for me. I absolutely love the Cardinals this afternoon and I think getting 3.5 points with the Jets is money – 4-1 right around the corner.
  • So, the Cardinals go up 10 late in the fourth, but then they forget to play defense. That’s a little like getting hit with a bag of piss on a cold day – at first you think, “Wow, that’s warm, feels great!” Shortly after, you realize it was piss, now you’re colder than ever and covered in frozen piss.
  • There was a good reason the Jets went from 3.5 to 6 points before kickoff – they suck! I guess the “sharps” knew that the Jets would give up three defensive touchdowns! Damn, why can’t I predict things like that! 2-3 YUCK!
  • I have to keep chopping wood, but I need a 14-6 four week run to catapult me back into the top 100 and give me a chance!

LHSC: 2-3, 8-10-2 (Tied for 320th)

Note: I use the Las Vegas Hilton Lines from vegasinsider.com. The Super Contest lines are not live, but instead are set and held the entire week.

 

NFC Worst – “The Quest for 6 Wins”

 

Tampa Bay @ San Francisco (-3.0)

Arizona @ Minnesota (-2.5)

Seattle @ NY Giants (-9.5)

Bye Week (-3.0) @ St. Louis

 

It must have been a full moon last Sunday, because all four NFC Worst teams had a chance to win. Fortunately, only one of the teams was able to disappoint. Unfortunately, it was the one team we couldn’t afford to pull off a victory.

 

Really, 49ers, really? Help me understand what the 49ers are thinking – we have a chance to make history here, and they go win an seemingly unwinnable game in Philadelphia. Even Jim Harbaugh couldn’t believe it, on the sideline after the win he looked like Chick Gandell from Chicago Black Sox after getting the game winning hit in game three and pissing off the gamblers, like “Uh, yeah, I am so excited we won!” But inside he is thinking, “How the hell am I going to win anything of significance with Alex Smith? I need Andrew Luck!”

 

Not all is lost, however, the damage the 49ers have done can easily be undone, they still only have two non-division wins – they’re allowed three. No worries they will get back on track this week, with Josh Freeman, the original king of cover.

 

The Seahawks dug themselves a nice 27-7 hole, but then they did the unthinkable – started to rally. Listen Hawk players, Pete Carroll is a marshmallow; you don’t have to win to have him open his palace for a post-game “kegger.” I don’t need the Hawks attempting a 61 yard field goal to win the game, it’s just too close. In fact with the 49ers exceeding expectations, I need the rest of the NFC West to save what little effort, energy, imaginative play-calling they have for the 49ers.

 

I really thought the Cardinals would notch a win against the Giants, as evidence by my SuperContest pick on them, but at the end of the game the defense realized history was at stake and that was by far more important than a silly $750,000 contest. If in 13 weeks we’re talking about the 6-10 49ers as division champs, we will look back on the Cardinals defense collapse against the Giants as the reason we have the historic 6 win division winner.

 

By far the most clutch team in the division is the Rams. What bad can you say about the Rams? When the chips are down, this team finds ways to lose, and for that members of the “6-10” club are grateful

 

The game against the Skins almost fell their way, but they took care of business when it counted most. Well done! I especially like that they shown some signs of life at the end of the game. Heading into the bye week that will give them something to build on, which won’t help them until week nine, which is exactly when we need this team to start playing like a slightly above mediocre NFL team.

 

Major concerns going forward:

 

  1. Clearly right now the biggest concern is that somehow, some way the 49ers are going to get to seven wins. We need this season to mirror the 2009 when the 49ers started 3-1 and finished 6-10.

 

For this week, we have an above average chance to post a 0-4; and yes, I am predicting a Rams loss to bye-week:

 

Seattle travels to New York to face the Giants. It seems like it never ends well for the West Coast teams traveling East. This will be no exception, although Eli Manning is about six times better on the road than at home.

 

It’s a lot of points to lay, but finish this sentence – “The Giants go up 14-0, the Seahawks respond . . .” Well, if you’re like me, you answer “by packing it in”. Seriously, 9.5 is a lot of points, but its Tavaris Jackson, on the road, in a hostile environment filled with frustrated Yankee fans. It won’t end well for the Seahawks.

 

Pick: NY Giants -9.5

 

Josh Freeman and the Tampa Bay Road Warriors hit the Bay Area this week to face a team that just won their equivalent of the Super Bowl. How do I know? I talked a friend of mine who is a huge 49er fan and he had a n ear-to-ear grin and he was wearing a “Week four Champs” t-shirt. Yeah, I think the 49ers will have a bit of a hangover this week. It’s back down to earth this week for the 49ers.

 

Pick: Tampa Bay +3.0

 

The Cardinals and Vikings feature a match-up of former Eagle quarterbacks Kevin Kolb and Donovan McNabb. Remember Kolb was McNabb’s understudy for his first couple of seasons in the NFL. And based on Kolb first handful of starts, Donovan really rubbed off on him.

 

Kolb has been very McNabbian-like with the game on the line this season. In Week three, Kolb threw a terrible interception agasint Seattle, to end the Cardinals best drive of the fourth quarter. Last week, Kolb couldn’t get the job done late either, as evidenced by the following Exhibits, A – needing a first down, Kolb rushes a throw off his back foot to Early Doucet; B – the final drive features a 2nd and short, the play-call is a screen pass, which Kolb eats and takes a sack as opposed to dumping the ball at the intended receivers feet, instead of 3rd and short, the Cardinals now face 3rd and 10; C – One play later, facing a 4th and three, Kolb again rushes a throw off his back foot to a heavily cover Larry Fitzgerald – ball game!

 

Therefore, my prediction is the team leading at the end of the third quarter wins this game.

 

Pick: Minnesota -2.5

 

Kansas City @ Indianapolis (-2.0) – Painter-to-Garcon is going to make Colts fans completely forget about Manning-to-Harrison. Uh, well maybe not, but is it a coincidence that Painter has an above average game on Monday and all of a sudden Peyton is talking about coming back in December. I think not!

Can Chiefs coach Todd Haley get along with anyone? As the offensive coordinator of the Cardinals, Haley got into it with several players, most notably during the NFC Championship, with Anquan Boldin. Haley also ran off Charlie Weis in the off-season. The latest incident was with his quarterback, Matt Cassel. The guy seems like an egotistical prick who can’t coach – that’s a highly unusual pair of traits for an NFL head coach, most just can’t coach!

Pick: Indianapolis -2.0

Juana Wynner’s Week Five Picks

Kansas City @ Indianapolis (-2.0)
– My dad always says the word “chief” or calls us “chief.”

Pick: Kansas City +2.0

Arizona @ Minnesota (-2.5)
– I love Arizona but I’m going to have to go with the Vikings on this one. Go #28!

Pick: Minnesota -2.5

Philadelphia @ Buffalo (-3.0)
– On the Bold and the Beautiful this week Bill Spencer got exactly what he wanted when his son got engaged to someone else. I think that the Bill S will get what they want to.

Pick: Buffalo +3.0

Oakland @ Houston (-5.5)
– My cousin lives in Texas and the Texans have been playing good football so far.

Pick: Houston -5.5

New Orleans @ Carolina (-6.5)
– New Orleans suffered through such rough times and they came back stronger from it. They have what it takes to win this one.

Pick: New Orleans -6.5

The Rest:

Cincinnati +2.0, Pittsburgh -3.5, Seattle +9.5, Tampa Bay +3.0, New England -8.0, San Diego -4.0, Atlanta +6.0, Chicago +5.0


 

 

Philadelphia (-3.0) @ Buffalo – Mike Vick declared “The Dream Team” thing dead this week. No, no, no, it’s not that easy, Mike. This requires more than public admission, you have to go perform an exorcism style ritual to get truly kill this thing off. Luckily I have the ritual for Philly – (a) Lose three of your first four games CHECK; (b) Socks, bars of soap, Vince Young – figure it out; (c) Cover an Eagle helmet in the blood of a baby eagle which every player must touch it with both hands prior to kickoff; Look you want out of this, you might have to risk going to jail and being further ostracized by PETA; (d) Andy Reid must get a tattoo of Rocky on the left butt check. We won’t need visual proof of this, your word is fine; and (e) Score a touchdown when presented with a 1st and goal inside five. There you go, Mike.

Surprisingly “e” will be the toughest challenge for the Eagles. What I don’t understand is why they can’t get Vick on the outside with some sort of run/pass option on the goal-line? I guess it’s all in Andy Reid’s master plan, like the way he calls timeouts with 2:02 left in the game. Does he realize that by calling a timeout so close to the two minute warning he provides the opposing coach free pass to call any play in his playbook? Honestly, a two year old could figure this out, why can’t Reid?

That aside there is no way the Eagles lose this game.

Pick: Philadelphia -3.0

Oakland @ Houston (-5.5) – Mr. Obvious will now tell you that the Texans are not the same team without Andre Johnson. And while we can all agree that is true, it will really have an impact this week against the Raiders. You see the Raiders are a very physical football and without Andre, the Raiders will be able to free up a safety to help in run support against the Texans best offensive weapon, Arian Foster. Mark it down the Texans will struggle to score points this week.

 

Pick: Oakland +5.5

 

New Orleans (-6.5) @ Carolina – Cam Newton has been a sports investor’s worst nightmare so far this season. He’s lead the Panthers to three straight covers, after opening the season with a push. He is destroying betting staples, like bet against a rookie on the road and don’t lay points with a rookie quarterback in any circumstance.

 

But despite the covering-hype, the public still can’t bring themselves to trust the rook, as 68% of the action is on the Saints. Even a “sharp” guy like me is siding with the 68% this week; my reasons – 1. The Saints cannot close out opponents by running the football; therefore, they will need to roll up as many points as possible, which, hopefully, will this put game out of cover reach for even the great Cam Covers; and 2. The Saints defense, while not great, will aggressively come after Newton with an array of blitzes which, I believe, will Newton into a typical rookie like performance for the first time this season.

 

Pick: New Orleans -6.5

 

Cincinnati @ Jacksonville (-2.0) – Why are the Jags favored in this game? Cincinnati’s defense is much better and their offense is at least as good; both have rookie quarterbacks, though Dalton has been far better than Gabbert. Moreover, the running games are similar, as are the special teams. This game should be no worse than a pick’em for the Bengals. But who am I to argue, I will take the free points.

 

Pick: Cincinnati +2.0

 

Megan Wynner’s Week Five Picks

New Orleans (-6.5) @ Carolina- I think that New Orleans will win because they have been doing well! In addition, they have awesome uniforms!

Pick: New Orleans +6.5

Chicago @ Detroit (-5) – I think that the Detroit Lions will win because they are a strong team. Therefore, they probably will the beat the Chicago Bears.

Pick: Detroit +5

Arizona @ Minnesota (-2.5) – I think that Arizona Cardinals will win because they are my states team! Also they made it to the super bowl in 2008. I also like their motto.

Pick: Arizona +2.5

Seattle @ N.Y. Giants (-9.5) – I think that the Seattle Seahawks will win because they have a cool motto! Also they have cool colors!

Pick: Seattle +9.5

Oakland @ Houston (-5.5) – I think that the Houston Texans will win because I think they can outplay the Raiders. I also like their team colors!

Pick: Houston +5.5

Green Bay (-6) @ Atlanta – I think the Green Bay Packers will win because they won the super bowl this past year. Therefore, the Packers will be able to outplay the Falcons!

Pick: Green Bay +6

San Diego (-4) @ Denver- I think that the San Diego Chargers will win because they have awesome team colors! I also think that they can outplay and communicate more than Denver!

Pick: San Diego +4

The Rest:

Indianapolis +2, Buffalo +3.0, Jacksonville +2, Pittsburgh -3.5, San Francisco -3.0, New England -8.0


 

 

Tennessee @ Pittsburgh (-3.5) – Shhh, nobody who matters has it figured out yet, but this Pittsburgh team is atrocious. Here is a list of things the Steelers cannot do: a. run the football; b. protect their quarterback; c. defend the run; d. defend the pass; and e. scare anyone physically. Other than that they’re great. Not even Mike Tomlin’s rah-rah act is getting through. They might be lucky to win six games.

 

And the Titans are the team this year that is the benefactor of the “catching teams at the right time” schedule, like the Chiefs last year. Translation, I can’t wait to bet against them in the playoffs.

 

Pick: Tennessee +3.5

 

NY Jets @ New England (-8.0) – This is way too many points. The Jets will keep it close and have an outside chance at winning outright. Believe me we’ve seen stranger things happen in the NFL than the Jets winning in New England.

 

Pick: NY Jets +8.0

 

San Diego (-4.0) @ Denver – I am not sure I trust the Broncos to keep this game close, but I will admit that the Chargers are nowhere near the same team without Antonio Gates. Plus, Kyle Orton needs a great game to save his job. How can you go against the following: Norv Turner on the opposite sideline, not having to face Antonio Gates and Kyle Orton with his back against the wall? The answer – you can’t!

 

Pick: Denver +4.0

 

Green Bay (-5.5) @ Atlanta – During my preparation for the NFL season wins prediction, I noted this game as a Falcon win based on the payback factor from the 2010 playoffs. And though I felt like the Falcons would under-achieve and the Packers were, well, the Packers, I recalled the Cardinals and Panthers 2008 playoff game, where the Cardinals went to Charlotte and throttled the Panthers much like the Packers pasted the Falcons last year. The next season the Panthers were a mess when they strolled into Phoenix for what seemed to be an easy win for the home town RedBirds. It didn’t quite work out like that, as the Panthers, clearly motivated by the way the previous season ended, crushed the Cardinals. And that was with Pickomottomus, Jake Delhomme at quarterback.

 

Pick: Atlanta +5.5

 

Chicago @ Detroit (-5.0) – Here is an interesting prop bet – Ndamukong Suh personal fouls -.5 over Jay Cutler broken ribs. A word of warning Jay, expect to hear a lot of this on Sunday, “Jay, look out!”

 

Still, the hype on Detroit is out of control; the odds on the Lions to win the Super Bowl have gone from 80-1 to 10-1. I agree that the Lions are good, but that is a severe over-reaction, they’re not that good.

 

Plus we have a trend in this – I had to dig deep into the database for this trend – home teams that have trailed in their previous two games by 16 or more points at halftime but won the game outright are 0-1 ATS since 1990. That is as of Tuesday morning!

 

Pick: Chicago +5.0

 

Colin Wynner calls (48% of) the winners!

 

Good Luck to all!

 


 

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