Sunday, November 3, 2013

The FGR Week 9 NFL Picks

"And Reader's Digest is considering
publishing TWO of my jokes."
I've been hacking away at my fifteen minutes of fame over the past couple of weeks with an email read on the October 14th Tony Kornheiser Radio Show and another one printed by Peter King in this week's MMQB.* And on top of all that, Bill Simmons ripped-off my Andy Reid made a deal with the devil joke last week. (I have no idea why I'm inserting all of these links when I never click on anyone else's links).

Blah blah blah . . . that's enough preamble. Let's stop screwing around and get on with the picks. By the way, other than Bruno Kirby, we're going with all skin in the photos this week because that's the kind of mood I'm in. Any questions? No? Good.

At Carolina by 7.5 over Atlanta: The Pick - Panthers

Coming into last week, the Falcons had four defensible losses that could lead one to believe that there was still hope for the season despite their crippling injuries. Then they went to Arizona and got absolutely manhandled by the Cardinals. Meanwhile, the Panthers are heading in the opposite direction after winning three straight as Cam Newton keeps preening like a 7 year old girl after every above-average play he makes. People keep saying that he should act like he's been there before but they seem to forget that he hasn't been there before as this is the first time the Panthers have been above .500 in the Cam Newton era. So keep acting like a front-running douche Cam to forever remind us that the only thing you've ever won is the most suspect title in NCAA sports history since the 1990 UNLV Runnin' Rebels.

At Dallas by 10.5 over Minnesota: The Pick - Vikings

The Cowboys have somehow managed to go 7-1 against the spread despite their 4-4 record this season by winning big and keeping their losses close. At some point that run has to end so I'm going against them until they fail to cover (unless of course they're playing another NFC East team and are somehow favored by less than a touchdown).

Some deals are harder to
pass-up than others.
New Orleans by 6.5 at the N.Y. Jets: The Pick - Saints

So I finally bought into the Jets' hype last week and look how they repaid me. I'm back to picking against them every week. If for no other reason, spite.**

Kansas City by 3.5 at Buffalo: The Pick - Chiefs

This is the last minor league opponent*** for the Chiefs before their three game stretch of Broncos-Chargers-Broncos. I'd be inclined to pick the Bills here if they weren't deciding between a banged-up second string quarterback and some guy who's last name rhymes with "tool." By the time this deal with the devil is paid-off, Alex Smith and Andy Reid are going to come back as a dung beetle and a perpetually constipated hippopotamus.****

Tennessee by 3 at St. Louis: The Pick - Titans

Picking against the team that just played Seattle theory took a hit last week when the Cardinals covered but I'm sticking with it, especially when the Seahawks game was a brutal Monday night home loss on the heels of the Cardinals deflating the entire city of St. Louis in game 5 of the World Series. It's going to feel like everybody's dog just died in the Edward Jones Dome today.

At Washington PK against San Diego: The Pick - Redskins

Earlier this week I found myself in the awkward position of being in the presence of a high-ranking member of the Redskins' front office under circumstances where it would have behooved me to keep my mouth shut in the face of the endless propaganda that was streaming from his lips. I was doing fine until he attempted to make the case for RG, III over Andrew Luck as the quarterback you would take today to start your franchise. For some reason, when he finished he was staring directly at me as if he was asking "don't you agree?" at which point I couldn't take it any more . . . "are you asking me?" Just as I was about to launch, someone quickly and wisely took the subject in another direction.

Philadelphia by 1.5 at Oakland: The Pick - Raiders

I really don't have much to say about this one so I'm going off topic to point out that the Rainbow Loom has caused the biggest spike in rubber production since some guy in 1840 was having second thoughts about doing business with a third world prostitute, noticed the thumb of a surgical glove and thought "wait a minute . . ."  

At Seattle by 15.5 over Tampa Bay: The Pick - Seahawks

This is a project yourself into the moment game. As in, I know that's an awfully big spread but project yourself into the end of the third quarter and what score do you see coming across the ticker for this game? Something around 27-6? Me too. 

Baltimore by 3 at Cleveland: The Pick - Ravens

The consensus among Ravens fans is that this is the game that determines whether or not they have a shot at continuing their playoff run this season. I know we're setting the bar a little low considering the Browns are on their third string quarterback and a three game losing streak but, as Joe Haden pointed out, these are not the same Ravens. (This is when you miss Ray Lewis who would have gotten himself in at tight end for a couple of plays just for the chance to blow-up Haden). By the way, every team in the AFC North other than the Ravens has now lost one of their three best players to a season-ending injury so there are no excuses at this point.

At New England by 7 over Pittsburgh: The Pick - Patriots
I'm pretty sure that Bill Murray's
stomach has never looked like that. 

It's the NFL's answer to a match-up between the 1980 Russian Olympic ice hockey team and Camp Mohawk from Meatballs. The Patriots are obviously Camp Mohawk because they're both blatant cheaters. That makes the Steelers the Russians who, let's face it, were really the biggest choking dogs in the history of sports. None of this helps pick the game but I'm really having fun with these parallels.

Indianapolis by 2.5 at Houston: The Pick - Colts

Now that the thoroughly detestable Miami Heat and Boston Red Sox have won the last two significant professional sports titles, the insufferable Jim Irsay has to feel pretty good about the Colts' Super Bowl chances.

At Green Bay by 11 over Chicago: The Pick - Packers

I don't believe that it has gone unnoticed by Aaron Rodgers that he has barely half as many touchdown passes as Peyton Manning and there is no better place to start making-up that ground than on Monday Night Football against the depleted defense of your biggest rival.

Last Week's Record: 8-5 . . . Season Record: 64-54-1

I'm not going to bother to figure-out the weekly average to determine if that was a fictional win. If you can't break 80, you deserve to lose. We'll get T.Y. Hilton back into the starting line-up in place of Julian Edelman in the hopes that he can handle his new found #1 receiver role in Indy. We'll swap the Ravens D back in as well.

Just another reason Browns fans are so
bitter . . . no cheerleaders. Don't worry
Cleveland, you're not missing much. Really.
Matthew Stafford - 29
LeSean McCoy - 5
Knowshown Moreno - 18
Marques Colston - 1
Julian Edelman - 0
Jason Witten - 1
Jay Feely - 9
Browns - 12

Total - 75

Bench

Eli Manning - 9
Chris Johnson - BYE
Bernard Pierce - BYE
T.Y. Hilton - BYE
Alshon Jefferey - BYE
Aaron Dobson - 12
Dallas Clark - BYE
Ravens - BYE

Unfortunately, I drafted two quarterbacks with the same bye week (which shows you how much thought I put into this premise) so I need to hit the waiver wire and look who's there, none other than Joe Flacco. So we'll drop one unlikely Super Bowl MVP for another and hope that Joe can stir-up a little post bye week magic in Cleveland. Good Lord I don't have a kicker either. OK, give me Rob Bironas and find the guy who came-up with this stupid fictional fantasy team idea and fire him. Other than providing a nice open space to feature a cheerleader of the week, this is a medium sized pain in my ass.

Email the Fantasy Golf Report here.

Endnotes

Regular readers also knew
that Miss Scarlet was going
to stay in the game.
* Those who know the true identity of the FGR will have no trouble finding these submissions if interested. For those who don't, I've certainly provided enough hints over the years to make it the equivalent of playing a game of Clue and removing every character from consideration other than Colonel Mustard and Miss Scarlet.

** I'm not exactly sure when I started despising the Jets so much. I think it stems from their season on Hard Knocks after the pouty scene with Mark Sanchez stuffing his books into his backpack while one of the coaches was trying to talk and the time Rex Ryan was commenting on his "crafty" signing of over the hill Ladanian Tomlinson and said, "man, I love being right." (We all think that sometimes d-bag but we don't say it out loud).

*** And believe me, I call the Bills "minor league" with full knowledge that they beat the Ravens. I have no delusions about the suspect quality of the 2013 Ravens. It's like we've been stuck in one of those movies where we switch bodies to see how the other half lives. I keep expecting to look in the mirror and see myself wearing a Vikings jersey.

**** You have to love the fact that, when necessary, you can Google "worst things to be reincarnated as." Other popular answers were the cave cricket, the naked mole rat and Mike Kryzewski.