It usually takes me four weeks to figure out where the teams are, from a gambling perspective.
Not this year. I felt as clueless as ever after four weeks.
After this past Sunday’s games, I think I’ve finally nailed a few ground rules for the 2013 season. You’ll see them along with this week’s picks. (Home team in CAPS.)
ARIZONA (+6.5) over Seattle
It’s probably better for you that you see my Thursday night pick on Fridays at this point. (Although ‘Zona was 30 yards away from the backdoor cover late in the fourth. But I digress.)
PHILADELPHIA (-2.5) over Dallas
Rule No. 1: Avoid taking Dallas when they’re giving points against a good offense. Philly can score and the Dallas defense has 1.5 guys I’m afraid of.
WASHINGTON (-1.5) over Chicago
I had both these teams falling off a cliff this season. So far the ‘Skins have held up their end of the bargain. Looks like Robert Garbage Time III is getting his legs back. I can see Shanahan read option-ing all over the not-as-stout-as-you-think Bears’ defense.
Cincinnati (+2.5) over DETROIT
Rule No. 2: Cincinnati plays to their level of competition. They can beat anyone and lose to anyone. Just be safe and take the points.
ATLANTA (-7.5) over Tampa Bay
I refuse to pick a shaky rookie QB on the road against a team coming off a bye.
Buffalo (+8.5) over MIAMI
I am telling you right now, if Matt Flynn ends up starting, TAKE MIAMI.
New England (-3.5) over NY JETS
No matter what a delirious Jets fan tells you, this is their Super Bowl, so they’ll play hard and… wait a minute… oh… my… God… it’s GRONNNNNK!
CAROLINA (-6.5) over St. Louis
I like Carolina’s front seven against any shaky QB. No matter what the Texans tried to pull last week, Sam Bradford is a shaky QB.
JACKSONVILLE (+7.5) over San Diego (UNDERDOG SPECIAL)
West Coast team traveling 2,300 miles east on a short week for a 1 pm game. Backdoor cover, at the very least. I think.
KANSAS CITY (-6.5) over Houston (LOCK OF THE WEEK)
Case Keenum. On the road. In #ARROWHEAD. Yeah, aight.
San Francisco (-4.5) over TENNESSEE
I refuse to pick Ryan Fitzpatrick unless he’s getting more than a TD.
Baltimore (+2.5) over PITTSBURGH
The former “Best Rivalry In Football” titleholder. This game should always be Home Team -3, and you should always take the points. (Especially when the home team is 1-4.)
GREEN BAY (-10.5) over Cleveland
The extra half point is enticing… but not enough to take the QB who thought THIS was a good decision.
INDIANAPOLIS (+6.5) over Denver (UPSET SPECIAL)
The passing of the torch. Colts 24, Broncos 21
Minnesota (+3.5) over NY GIANTS
Rule No. 3: I refuse to take any 0-6 team giving points, period.
Last Week: 8-7
This Season: 39-53