NFL Picks - Week 12

Sunday Morning

Tennessee @ Chicago

Jay Cutler injured his shoulder in Sunday's loss and may be done for the season. If you ask me he leaves as a tragic hero. When the Bears are choosing the 2nd or 3rd overall pick in the draft Chicago fans will be cavorting while a resolved Cutler watches from the shadows knowing that he was the reason they dance, but also realizing that reminding them of that in this moment would only hamper their exultation. Fear not Bears fans, Cutler will allow you this your day of cheer, but know that one day he will return, and on that day there will be no cheering, in its place will live fear, regret, and unwelcome arousal ... after all it is Jay Cutler.

Titans 30-20

Jacksonville @ Buffalo
The Bills managed to keep their playoff hopes alive with a win in Cincinnati last Sunday that brought their record to 5-5. Meanwhile the Jaguars managed to keep their playoff hopes alive for 2020. They're all but mathematically eliminated this season, and as long as Blake Bortles' regression continues at the same precipitous rate they don't figure to get to the postseason within the Trump administration. Come to think of it actual jaguars will probably go extinct within the Trump administration, so that should make for a fascinating juxtaposition over the next four years. 

Bills 27-16

Cincinnati @ Baltimore
The Bengals have fallen to 3-6-1, and their season is as good as done ... iiiis what I'd be saying if they didn't play in the AFC North, but since they do and the division leader is 5-5 Baltimore, Cincinnati has a chance to put themselves back in the mix with a win. Of course, what we're failing to address is that the Bengals are 3-6-1 for a reason, and that reason is that they suck and think ties are funny. With AJ Green out for possibly the remainder of the season don't expect Cincy to make a run. Well expect them to run more, but not make a run. You get what I'm saying, right? Don't pretend like you don't. Really? Ok, what I'm saying is that because AJ Green is out they're not going to make a run at the division title, but they will be running the ... Are you laughing? You son of a bitch. 

Ravens 24-20

Arizona @ Atlanta
Carson Palmer is struggling right now. He got tangled up in his sheets after a restless sleep and now he can't seem to wrest himself loose. If he struggles any harder he could wind up suffocating. If you're reading this he needs your help. Google Carson Palmer's address and send an ambulance there ASAP. What are you waiting for?!? Unfortunately once he's freed from his sheets Palmer will have to find a way to get past his struggles on the field, and he'll need more than an ambulance to help him there. Well actually I suppose the ambulance could have good hands, so who knows? Even so I'd have to imagine that it wouldn't be an elegant route runner. Inevitably it would plow through DBs and get called for offensive pass interference on a consistent basis. Maybe the ambulance would be more effective as an O-lineman ... Wait what the hell are we talking about?!? Look for the Falcons to get the win at home. 

Falcons 34-26

New York Giants @ Cleveland
Perhaps the saddest part of the Browns season is that the poor bastards haven't had their bye week yet. At this point all they want, and indeed all America wants for them is a week off. I have to imagine that when the league mapped out the schedule and saw that they needed two teams to have a Week 13 bye they just shrugged and said, "Ok, so Cleveland and who else?" Well ya know what NFL?!? These Browns aren't gonna be your whipping boy for long! They're gonna come up next season ... or maybe 2018 ... ok, 2023 at the latest ... and they're gonna shove it down your throats!

Giants 26-20

Los Angeles @ New Orleans
If the Rams games have felt familiar for the last month it's not your imagination, they play the same game EVERY WEEK. Here are their point totals over that four game stretch: 10, 10, 9, 10. And it's not just them, here are their opponents' totals: 17, 13, 6, 14. So not only are they painfully boring, they're dragging their opponents down with them in a cyclone of unwatchability. Normally the Saints are an exciting team, but don't expect their requisite fireworks this week because the Rams extinguish fireworks like a rainy windstorm. While that might sound like something approaching a compliment for LA keep in mind that they don't replace the extinguished fireworks with any of their own, they just kick the unlit, wet cardboard around the cul-de-sac until the crowd slowly dissipates. 

Saints 20-13

San Francisco @ Miami
On Thursday I said that the Thanksgiving games would make the Pilgrims proud, but really they would take even greater pride in this game. Not only for Colin Kaepernick's protest of a persecuting nation, but also because the pilgrims respected nothing more than a power running game and that's exactly what we've seen in recent weeks from Jay Ajayi and the Miami Dolphins. You can bet that if the pilgrims were alive today they'd be sporting 'Phins gear. Unfortunately it probably wouldn't look great on them because teal wouldn't go well with their pale complexions; also pretty much nothing would look good on them because they'd be 400 years old and basically walking corpses.

Dolphins 33-15

San Diego @ Houston
Last week during the Texans' loss to the Raiders in Mexico City Brock Osweiler was repeatedly distracted by a laser pointer being directed at him from the stands. A lot of questions immediately leapt to mind, the most pertinent of which being, "What?" The second most pertinent being, "How?" You're in luck, because I can answer both. These laser pointer hijinx are the result of a 13 year old time traveler from 1998 named Trevor Finch who went to February of 2017 and found out that the Texans had snuck into the playoffs and somehow won the Super Bowl. Thankfully he decided to correct this abomination for the good of the league and came back to Week 11 to make sure that it doesn't happen. Don't be surprised if the laser pointers keep popping up during Texans' games down the stretch because Trevor is not taking any chances.

Chargers 24-23

Sunday Afternoon

Seattle @ Tampa Bay
The Buccaneers won last week to bring their record to an even 5-5. The peculiar thing about that mark is that they're 1-4 at home and 4-1 on the road. But really is it any wonder that a team named the "Buccaneers" is better while invading an enemy's territory? Well yes actually, buccaneers of old were much more likely to stick around the Caribbean Sea than venturing elsewhere for their pillaging and plundering purposes. So add another layer of mystery as to why this crew of Bucs has had so much more success away from home. If you'll notice above, this game is being played in Tampa, and it's against the Seahawks, so you can probably guess who I'm taking unless you're a first time reader, in which case where the hell have you been?!? It's Week 12 and I need the readers baby!

Seahawks 29-17

Carolina @ Oakland
The city of Oakland says they have a stadium agreement in place wth a group attempting to keep the Raiders in town. This sounds great on the surface, but if you look into the actual specifics of it some of the sheen wears off. For instance, it will be yet another multipurpose stadium, but instead of the A's they'll be sharing the field with the city's parks and rec baseball and Pop Warner football leagues. So not only will the baseball diamond still be present but there promises to be orange rinds and candy wrappers strewn about on the field every Sunday. And I wouldn't have it any other way, if the Raiders aren't playing in a shitty stadium they just aren't the Raiders.

Raiders 27-23

New England @ New York Jets
This match-up was originally scheduled to be the Sunday Night game, but was flexed out in favor of a more intriguing pairing. So congratulations Jets, you managed to get the Patriots flexed out of a prime time game. New York has announced that they'll return to Ryan Fitzpatrick at starting quarterback, which I hope was their last ditch effort to get NBC to keep the game. Like they put out the press release and expected the network executives to go scrambling for the phones, "Fitzpatrick is in! Put these fuckers back on prime time!" Unfortunately for the Jets Fitzpatrick's return failed to impress NBC, just as his performance will fail to impress the rest of the nation on Sunday.

Patriots 34-20

Sunday Night 

Kansas City @ Denver
Let's check in with Sunday Night Football analyst Cris Collinsworth to get his insight on this pivotal AFC West matchup:
CriColl, I'm just not sure what the hell is going on with you anymore, and ya know what? I love it!

Broncos 20-17

Monday Night 

Green Bay @ Philadelphia
When all is said and done the Eagles may wind up with the toughest schedule in all of football, but ya know what I'll bet Carson Wentz would have it any other way. That's not a typo, I'm guessing that if given the choice Wentz might appreciate some easier matchups. And it's that kind of veteran savvy that makes him seem wise beyond his years. It also makes him seem like a real coward. Again, I'm just putting words in his mouth right now, I have no proof that he feels one way or another, but man, what a spineless jellyfish. Luckily this yellow-bellied rook gets a bit of a break with the struggling Packers coming to town. So there ya go Wentz, you gutless wimp, here's a soft toss right down the middle. One last time I just want to reiterate this is a Bayless, sorry, baseless assumption I'm making about a man I've never met and rarely heard talk.

Eagles 24-19


NFL Picks - Thanksgiving

Minnesota @ Detroit
This full slate of Thanksgiving day games would make the Pilgrims proud. Little known fact is that they actually played a football game against the natives on the first Thanksgiving. The Pilgrims were trounced 78-6. They managed one touchdown but missed the 35 yard PAT. After the game they lobbied to move it into 20 yards, which is where the kick stayed until 2015. As for the teams in the early game this season, the Vikings have let it be known that Adrian Peterson may be available to return to the field next month. What's more, Sam Bradford may be able to return soon as well. What's that? Bradford's not injured? Just terrible? Oh, I see. Hmm, well then I guess it wouldn't be wise to take him and the Vikings when they haven't won a road game since September. Just as it wasn't wise for the pilgrims to even attempt that aforementioned PAT in the first place. The coach's chart clearly states that when you're down 78 and score a touchdown you go for two. If we don't learn from history we're doomed to repeat it. 

Lions 23-19

Washington @ Dallas
Thanksgiving is regularly a day when you see your cousins. This year it's a day when you'll see Kirk Cousins. And when you think about it Kirk Cousins is a lot like your cousins. You see them every once in a while and normally it's an enjoyable, if not slightly awkward, experience. But then, at least once a year, in the heat of the moment they start screaming and cause a scene. Then you're reminded that oh yeah, they're kind of crazy. Before you laugh (hopefully?) and reflect on how wacky your cousins are consider this: you're a cousin too. Indeed we're all somebody's cousin, but Kirk is all of our Cousins. Does that work grammatically? Probably not. Does it mean the Redskins will win? Again, probably not. The karmic ramifications of a team named the Redskins playing on Thanksgiving are just too great to ignore.

Cowboys 31-27

Pittsburgh @ Indianapolis
With Andrew Luck in concussion protocol Ben Roethlisberger has cautioned him that a brain is "nothing to mess with." This is coming from a man who famously got in a motorcycle accident while not wearing a helmet. So it's basically the equivalent of the commercial with the lady smoking through her stoma telling you to stay away from cigarettes. Listen to him Andrew! You don't want to end up like this. If Luck does play you just know that the Steelers will be looking to knock the stuffing out of him. Literally. Since this game kicks off at 8:30p local time Luck will have plenty of time to eat a full Thanksgiving meal beforehand, and sources tell me that he regularly overdoes it on the stuffing. The resulting sluggish play from the Colts' QB will be Indy's undoing. 

Steelers 34-24


NFL Picks - Week 11

Sunday Morning 

Pittsburgh @ Cleveland
The Steelers have lost four in a row and have to be wondering if their season is slipping away. They're no doubt down in the dumps, staring into the mirror wondering where it all went wrong and how they can get things back on track again. Just then the door swings open, light spills in from outside and a group of shadowy figures emerge, the leader clears his throat "I believe we may be of some assistance." It's the Cleveland Browns! A wry smile forms on the Steelers' faces, "What took ya so long?" they reply. Both teams erupt in laughter as the Steelers think to themselves, 'This season ain't done yet.'

Steelers 35-17  

Baltimore @ Dallas
Tony Romo made his first pass of the 2016 season on Tuesday at his press conference when he formally passed the torch to Dak Prescott as Dallas Cowboys starting quarterback. Poetry! It was the grandest public torch passing since WrestleMania VI. But did we learn from Hogan and Warrior? Even though a torch can be passed, it can just as easily be fumbled and picked back up by the original bearer. Will Prescott go down the same dangerous path as the Ultimate Warrior? We'll know if he starts no selling on sacks and demanding money from Jerry Jones on game days. Most people assume it's a good thing that the pressure is now off Prescott, but what if that's what he was thriving on? What if this new situation makes him too comfortable? I think that just may be the case, and because there's little to no home field advantage in Dallas, I'm picking the upset

Ravens 23-21 

Jacksonville @ Detroit
Did you see Blake Bortles' blooper interception last week? It was such an unlikely play, yet because it was the Jaguars it made so much sense. All they want to do is throw the ball into the ground and move on with their day without bothering anybody. But no, the ball somehow bounces to the defense and a catastrophe ensues. It was the Jaguars of plays. How does Bortles avoid this in the future? Might I suggest diving to the ground and rifling the ball into the turf from mere inches away to ensure that the D can't touch it. As a side benefit Blake would get to show off that rifle arm by the resulting divot size. He could do a crude hand measurement and show it off to the crowd who would go wild with each new personal best, because they really have nothing else to cheer. Last week the Lions managed to take over first place in the NFC North while doing nothing at all on their bye. Now they get to play the Jaguars in Detroit, so they can probably just do nothing again and extend their division lead.

Lions 30-17

Tennessee @ Indianapolis
At a glance the Titans may seem like a boring team, but if you look closer you'll see that they've put up an average of 40 points over the last three weeks and have a real shot at making the playoffs after having the worst record in the league last season. And isn't that a lesson that we can apply beyond football as well? Too often we assume we know so much about a person just by looking at them. We must challenge ourselves to break through societal preconceptions before we can truly grow together. For instance, just today I noticed a maniacal, ranting street urchin outside of the grocery store; normally I would scurry off in the opposite direction, but then I thought about the Titans and my perspective shifted. I approached the man and asked him if he'd like a sandwich. He stabbed me. I'm writing this from the hospital. But that doesn't take away from the fact that the Titans are more exciting than you might think. 

Titans 33-30

Buffalo @ Cincinnati
What are we going to see out of this one? Heh, you tell me. No seriously, c'mon, tell me. I'm sick of having to do all the work. It's Week 11 and I've been giving you straight gold for almost three months now, it's about damn time I got something in return! It's starting to dawn on me that I'll have to publish this before you can see it and respond, so I don't know what I'm waiting for. You're probably wondering why I'm even leaving any of this text in the final draft. Well the joke's on you, there's no such thing as a final draft on here! I just spew out the first thoughts that come to mind into Siri and hope she got it down without any typos. This seems like a toss-up, but the Bengals are still pretty solid at home, so let's go with them. Ok Siri, let's Merv on. No not Merv, mauve. No you ducking idiot I'm trying to say move! Holy shot!

Bengals 27-24

Tampa Bay @ Kansas City
Kansas City is on fire! For those of you reading in the KC area don't panic. If you have relatives who live within driving distance go to them now. First things first though, carefully test out the door knob at your house or apartment. If it's very hot then it may already be too late for you. Your only option is to draw a bath, get in the tub, wait for the flames to entrap you then submerge your head under the water and see how long you can hold your breath. If it's not long enough to wait out the fire, well your prospects were no better beforehand, right? Don't just take it from me though, any survival expert will tell you the same thing folks, I'm not just blowing smoke (WINK). As for the Chiefs, they're also on fire. They've won five in a row and are now in first place in the AFC West. Meanwhile the Buccaneers finally won their first home game of the season and sit at 4-5 in a congested NFC playoff race. In other words, they don't have to start drawing a bath just yet, but with a tough schedule ahead they'll probably be submerged and awaiting the flames when all is said and done. Hmm, this got a bit morbid. 

Chiefs 29-16

Chicago @ New York Giants
Last week I posited a theory that Jay Cutler played well in his first game back because there was zero pressure on him and that's the way he likes it. But I also suggested that if the rest of the teams in the NFC North continued to lose Cutler would tank to avoid having to play any meaningful games for the rest of the season. Well Green Bay and Minnesota both lost last Sunday and something tells me Jay was watching the scoreboard because this happened. Bears fans seem frustrated anew by Cutler but they should be thrilled that he's back. He's the perfectly hateable fall guy that will gladly lose out to ensure that the Bears have a Top 3 draft pick in 2017. He's not the hero they need, nor the one they deserve, because Jay Cutler isn't a hero at all, and that's what makes him the right man for the job. 

Giants 38-20

Arizona @ Minnesota
Sam Bradford being lousy is refreshing. We all knew he was just masquerading as a pretty good quarterback for the first five games of the season.. It's like when a mediocre actor gets a role that really suits them and it leads to an Oscar win out of nowhere. Except for in this case Bradford didn't actually win anything, he basically got the equivalent of a Golden Globe nomination ... a Comedy/Musical Golden Globe nomination. So uh yeah, not great. Bradford and the offense have become so stagnant that even a struggling Cardinals squad on the road seems like a better pick at this point.  

Cardinals 20-16

Sunday Afternoon 

Miami @ Los Angeles
Jared Goff is poised to make his first start of the season this Sunday. One of the most interesting aspects for Goff will be seeing him take a snap from under center for the first time since he was in high school (unverified) because his college team Cal operated solely out of the shotgun. My hunch is that things won't go so smoothly. On the first snap attempt I predict that Goff will stand directly behind center but still in a shotgun stance with his hands in front of his midsection, when the center snaps the ball it will go directly into Goff's testicles triggering a torrent of vomit to spew forth from the rookie's mouth and onto the center's back. Running back Todd Gurley will see this unfold in front of him, locate the barf covered ball on the turf and attempt to pick it up. At this point a dazed Goff will stagger around to see Gurley momentarily grasp the ball, but it will be understandably slippery and it will squirt free from Gurley's hands directly into, you guessed it, Goff's testicles. More vomit. Goff will then pass out due to the pain. Unfortunately his head will land right near the loose ball and a giant pileup will ensue on top of him. So like I said, it could be a rough adjustment for the rookie. 

Dolphins 20-12

New England @ San Francisco
This has the makings of possibly the biggest blowout of the season, and I'm not talking about my dry bar appointment. Am I right ladies? Seriously am I? Did that work? The Patriots are coming off a tough home defeat while the Niners are also coming off a loss (he said for the eighth straight time). The only thing that makes me think this might not be a giant rout is that the Patriots could get up early and coast to a 14 point win. Then again they might still have that Sunday night loss fresh in their minds (I know I do) and just angrily beat the poor Niners mercilessly.

Patriots 41-17 

Philadelphia @ Seattle
The Eagles have become a pretty predictable team, which makes it all the more confounding that I usually pick their games wrong. If you look at the breakdown of their schedule they're 4-0 at home and 1-4 on the road. They shouldn't be too heavily criticized for that poor road record though, because each of their losses has been within one score against a winning team. Well, this is another road game against a winning team. Like a self-cleaning nose, this one picks itself.

Seahawks 24-16

Sunday Night 

Green Bay @ Washington
Surprisingly the Packers come into this game with a losing record and, dating back to last season, are 9-12 in their last 21 games. So what's the problem? Let's turn to the top color commentator in the sport in hopes to find the answer:
Gotta say CriColl, that didn't really answer anything. It sounds like you're struggling pal, you need a break. Maybe you could find someone who does a fantastic Cris Collinsworth impression and let him call games for you while you take a breather. Worth considering.

Redskins 27-23 

Morning Night 

Houston @ Oakland
The Texans are 6-3 and I'm so confused. Their quarterback play has been atrocious, they've been out scored by 27 points on the season, and they're currently sitting as the 3rd seed in the AFC. It's like they've pulled off a heist and now they're fleeing to Mexico. Literally, this game will be played in Mexico City. It's a boon for the Raiders because they're 5-0 on the road while Houston is 1-3. Somehow Oakland has found a loophole where they're BOTH road teams. It's what is known as the Mexican Swap. Don't google that to verify, you will NOT be happy with what you find. Well actually maybe you will be, ya sicko. 

Raiders 31-18


NFL Picks - Week 11 Thursday

New Orleans @ Carolina
Last Sunday the Saints were robbed of a chance at overtime when the refs failed to overturn Denver's PAT return even though the runner looked to be out of bounds. New Orleans fans were justifiably outraged, but I know one man who was tickled pink: Arena Football League commissioner Scott Butera. This would never happen in the AFL, because there is no out of bounds. This is your time to strike Scott Butera! The world needs to know about your league's superior sidelines. Butera will probably just sit on his hands though like he has throughout his sham of a tenure as leader of our nation's second most beloved football league. I know what you're thinking, "Not another Butera tangent!" I know, I know, I'm like a broken record here. Speaking of broken records, Drew Brees has done just that multiple times in his career. This week though he's on the road against a desperate team that's been playing better defense of late, so I'll tentatively take Carolina. Man I sound as cowardly as Scott Butera. Sorry! 

Panthers 27-23


NFL Picks - Week 10

Sunday Morning

Green Bay @ Tennessee
Before we get all up in arms about the Packers' 4-4 start and wonder whether or not they're good, shouldn't we first ask ourselves, "What are we doing with our lives?" If you honestly think that you're doing better than 4-4 then feel free to rip Green Bay all you want. But if you yourself are at .500 or below get your shit straight first and then we can all start making fun of Aaron Rodgers and co. for losing at home to the Colts. Personally since I'm like a 6-2, 7-1 type of guy I can basically say whatever I want. And here it goes: I think the Packers are pretty mediocre, but the Titans are just a notch below that, they're mediocrer .. er. 

Packers 27-20

Minnesota @ Washington
The Vikings started out 5-0 and were the darlings of the NFL. We all wanted to pinch their rosy little Minnesotan cheeks. They've since lost three in a row, including a heart breaker last week against Detroit that has left them with a tenuous hold upon first place in the NFC North. They've grown from darling into an awkward teen whose cheeks we're tentative to touch at all for fear that our hands will be slathered in acne grease. Bradford and the gang have scored an average of 12 points in their three losses which means changes need to be made on offense, and I say start with the coaching. Fire offensive coordinator Norv Turner! What's that? He already quit last week? Oh, well that's not a good sign. Maybe that was the equivalent of Norv saying "It's not you, it's me," even when he knows it's the other way around just so he could get the hell out of there and never have to deal with Sam Bradford again. Sure he'll check the standings every once in a while just as one would an ex's Instagram, but my guess is he won't be too regretful when he does. After the Vikings' last three games I have no choice but to take Washington. You've left me with no choice Minnesota! Now go wash your face.

Redskins 20-15

Chicago @ Tampa Bay
Jay Cutler returned to the Bears' starting unit in their last game and was shockingly decent in a Monday night win over the Vikings. It was confusing at first, but then I realized that this is the perfect situation for Cutler because there's nothing at stake. For years I've been arguing that Jay Cutler hates football, but now I think it's really just that Jay Cutler hates playing in games that matter. The Bears were 1-6 going into that Monday night game and are all but eliminated from playoff contention. There's no pressure on Cutler right now, and that's just the way he likes it. This was the same environment he played in for four years at Vanderbilt. He's back in his comfort zone. Now, if Chicago reels off a couple wins and suddenly finds themselves in contention in the NFC North you better believe that Cutler's performance will take a nosedive. In fact, just to be safe he should probably lose this one and further establish a healthy buffer.

Buccaneers 30-27

Kansas City @ Carolina
The Chiefs got a win last week while starting backups at quarterback and running back, proving once again that Andy Reid is one of the top coaches in the NFL. Somebody should tell that to his wife. He gets home Sunday night and she's got a list of chores for him to do; honest to goodness, a honey do list for a goddamn NFL head coach the same night that he just led a team with a patchwork offense to a 6-2 record. He's 17-3 in his last 20 games and you want him to clean out the fucking gutters?!? How about this, call up Jim Tomsula or Mike Pettine and tell them to put on some gloves, because they're not coaching an NFL team!!! The Panthers have won two straight but I'll still roll with my boy Andy.

Chiefs 23-20

Atlanta @ Philadelphia
I delved deep into the stats of these teams and found something quite peculiar. The Eagles' offense is averaging 344 yards per game, while their defense is surrendering an average of 344 yards per game. Kind of crazy, right? Well we're not done yet jocko, here's what else: they're passing for an average of 236 while running for 108. And on defense they're giving up an average of 236 passing yards and 108 rushing! They're in complete lock-step. Psychologists say that when a person admires someone they will mirror their mannerisms and behavior. Well it seems pretty clear that the Eagles' defense is hardcore mancrushing on the offense. They always show up at the same hotel as them when they're on the road, they're always watching them from the sideline when they're out on the field. Hell, they even wear the same thing as them every week! You're looking thirsty Eagles D, and a bit creepy. 

Falcons 31-24

Los Angeles @ New York Jets
Distraught Rams fans chanted en masse for backup rookie QB Jared Goff while starter Case Keenum struggled during the Rams' Week 9 loss. And I don't blame them. They're fed up and they want change, it doesn't matter how unqualified the replacement would be, or that he sounds like an idiot. The Rams fans, and indeed all of us, deserve that change, even if it means that the alternative is a paranoid, megalomaniacal, sociopathic child. Man I hate Jared Goff.

Jets 17-10

Denver @ New Orleans
At the start of October I couldn't have imagined picking New Orleans in this game. But in the NFL things can change the blink of an eye, assuming that your blinks last for about a month. However, if you blink like a normal person I guess things in the NFL can change in millions of blinks of an eye. It will be strength vs. strength when the Saints go to the air against Denver's passing D, the Broncos' secondary isn't quite fully staffed though due to injuries so I'll give the home team the edge.

Saints 24-22 

Houston @ Jacksonville
We need something to spice this game up, and I think I may have just what the doctor ordered. If you look at the abbreviations for these teams it's HOU/JAX. You thinking what I'm thinking? Invite Hugh Jackman to this game. What will he do? Let him do whatever he wants. Special guest ref? Sure. All-time QB? Why not?!? There are no rules against it. Ok actually I just thought about it and there are definitely rules against one guy playing for both teams in the same game, let alone an Australian actor who most likely has never played football before. Alright, so maybe just make it "Hugh Jackman Day" and keep a camera constantly trained on his luxury box as he grows increasingly confused about the rules of the game and his presence there. The Texans still have yet to win a game on the road, and if they can't get their first in Jacksonville, they might never get one. 0-8 on the road it is! Whatever the outcome after watching this game Hugh Jackman will be able to tell his Australian relatives that football is NOT very entertaining.

Jaguars 22-19

Sunday Afternoon

Miami @ San Diego
On Tuesday 59% of San Diegans voted to not provide billions of dollars to build a new stadium for the Chargers, which means the team's days in their current hometown may be numbered. But then again all of our days are numbered now. And seeing as how the world will probably end within the next four years there's a decent chance that the good people of San Diego won't have to deal with their team leaving after all. So take solace in that. One thing they should keep an eye on in a couple of seasons though will be the tricky shadows caused by the border wall during afternoon games.

Chargers 34-31

Dallas @ Pittsburgh
Normally FOX dubs their afternoon games "America's Game of the Week." For this match-up they're switching it to "FOX's Collective 3 Hour Orgasm - 2016." It does NOT have a good ring to it, but it does accurately describe the network's enthusiasm for this particular contest. Conventional wisdom tells me that the Steelers will get the win at home. Then again, conventional wisdom doesn't watch much football, and definitely didn't even know what I was talking about when I said I thought the Cowboys' O-line has the capability to dominate any game they play. In other words I'm not trusting conventional wisdom on this one.

Cowboys 24-21

San Francisco @ Arizona
I'm sure it's been said before, but one of the great ironies of the 2016 NFL season is that Colin Kaepernick may never get to kneel within the field of play. San Francisco has lost seven in a row, and there's no end to that streak in sight. So what can Kaepernick do to bring his protest inside the hashmarks? How about taking a shotgun snap, doing a 180 and sprinting into his own end zone to symbolize the wrong direction that our nation is headed. The resulting two points would be a small price to pay to get his point across. And if people don't understand it the first time do it again and again and again until the message is hammered home. Or if he doesn't want to go that far he could just vote.

Cardinals 31-10 

Sunday Night

Seattle @ New England
It's a highly anticipated Sunday Night match-up, let's get some insight from the man who will be in the announcer's booth for it, Cris Collinsworth:
Sometimes I don't know whether to love you or hate you CriColl. In other news Bill Belichick legitimately may be Rain Man. Listen to his response to questions at a press conference this Wednesday about his connection to Trump.
He can't even muster "We're on to ..." anymore, he's cut it down to just repeating the opposing city's name. Well guess who I'm picking in this one Bill? Seattle, Seattle, yeah definitely definitely Seattle.

Seahawks 31-28

Monday Night

Cincinnati @ New York Giants
The Bengals are coming off a bye week after playing Washington to a tie in London. Finally a result the English fans could understand! I have no doubt that the Brits were more excited by that finish than any abroad NFL game yet. In fact, being the creative lot that they are, the Londoners have already written a soccer style chant to commemorate the match:

O the Bengals and Skins have played to a draw
Precisely in accordance with British law
We watched through the 75th minute and had our fill
The only result more thrilling would've been nil-nil

But now the Bengals are back in the USA where we like our ties windsored, bowed, or Burrelled, but not on our football fields. Unfortunately for Cincinnati they'll probably be begging for a draw after this one is over.

Giants 30-23


NFL Picks - Week 10 Thursday

Cleveland @ Baltimore
The Browns are now 0-9 and looking ahead at the rest of their schedule you'd be hard pressed to come up with a possible win. Then again, they're winless, so of course it wouldn't be easy to find a game they might win. What I mean to say is they suck, you guys get it. Meanwhile the Ravens just notched their first win since September and now find themselves in first place in the AFC North. They could've just taken the whole month of October off and been fine. It's a strategy the Seattle Mariners have used for the last 15 years only much less successfully. The all-of-a-sudden division leaders from Baltimore should come out inspired and dispatch the lowly Browns. Then again stranger things have happened. Unfortunately for Cleveland it's not quite Week Eleven.

Ravens 26-13


NFL Picks - Week 9

Sunday Morning

Pittsburgh @ Baltimore
After only two weeks of what was originally expected to be at least a four week absence Ben Roethlisberger is expected to play this Sunday. We've all heard the saying, "You can't keep a good man down." Well apparently that applies to giant pieces of shit too. Shockingly the Ravens have a chance to be in first place with a win even though they've dropped four straight. It's like  stumbling into the bar and still being the most sober guy there. Don't expect them to stay that way for long though, they'll be smashing glasses, throwing up in their mouth, and passing out in their chair before long. Meanwhile the Steelers are slamming waters and shaking it off. They probably still shouldn't drive (especially Roethlisberger) but they'll manage to get to bed without pissing themselves. Jeez, I got in deep on that metaphor.

Steelers 25-17

Jacksonville @ Kansas City
Amidst their (constant) struggles the Jaguars have fired their offensive coordinator and promoted Nathaniel Hackett, a man I can only assume is from the 1700s, to the position. He must have stumbled upon a wormhole in a Philadelphia alleyway and naturally ended up in 2016 Jacksonville, the location that most closely approximates the stench of a Philadelphia alleyway in the 1700s. As we all know smell is the sense most closely related to time travel. So what can we expect from the offensive game plan of a man from 250 years ago? Probably not much early on as Hackett will most likely spend the first quarter screaming about the Jumbotron while attempting to hide under the bench. Once he gets acclimated though expect a lot of runs from the center, because football did not exist in Hackett's time and he won't understand the concept of a snap.

Chiefs 30-20

New York Jets @ Miami
Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi has run for over 200 yards in consecutive games making fans around the league stop and say, "That's a stupid name." And I'm inclined to agree. Why not just go with AJ Ajayi? You know what else is stupid? This is Miami's fourth straight home game. Last week I complained about a similar situation coming up for the Raiders without even realizing that the Dolphins were already in the thick of an interminable homestand. We've established that a computer generates the schedule now, but have we ever stopped to consider whether or not the computer is a fan? What if it's been messing with AFC teams' schedules this whole time to give someone an advantage. That someone obviously being the Patriots, because who else would it be?

Dolphins 31-22

Philadelphia @ New York Giants
This is a pivotal NFC East match-up and as a result the league has deigned that the field itself will be on a pivot. It'll seem like a cool idea at first, providing fans around the stadium myriad views and giving the game a cool Matrix vibe. That'll be the first play. Before the second play most of the players will be barfing. Then the first pass will be attempted; it will go 10 yards to the left of where it was initially intended due to the rotation of the field. The remainder of the game will basically be hell on earth. Rolled ankles, passed out players, nauseous fans desperately fighting for their lives. Ok so that last part is no different than a regular Eagles/Giants game.

Eagles 20-17

Detroit @ Minnesota
The Vikings started off 5-0 but have since dropped two straight. Has their ship gone astray? Meanwhile the Lions fell back to earth last week in Houston when their 3 game win streak was snapped. Is it possible that their pride has been damaged? (Ha, you've done it again. Brilliant wordplay old boy! No need for actual analysis of the game at this point, just coast on those puns until you're somewhere near a paragraph, slap a one sentence prediction on the end and call it a day. Well look at that, this parenthetical has taken care of the aforementioned paragraph padding. Now for the cherry on top ...) I'll take Minnesota! 

Vikings 19-16

Dallas @ Cleveland
Well the Browns had as good a chance as they will all season to get their first win last week and they didn't come through against the Jets at home. It's like a virgin who goes to a prostitute but just ends up talking; if it didn't happen then who knows if it ever will. Things don't get any easier with the Cowboys coming to town. Now that the World Series has restored Cleveland's sports identity to comfortable misery there's no better time for a pitiful Browns performance that reinforces that and brings Cleveland fans back to a time when the emotional stakes weren't so high.

Cowboys 33-14

Sunday Afternoon

Carolina @ Los Angeles
Earlier this week Cam Newton had a chat with Roger Goodell about better protecting him on the field. This is like telling the teacher. Man the Rams are gonna beat him up so bad now! You never tattle. Number one rule of the schoolyard and the NFL. Just ask Aaron Hernandez. Newton couldn't ask for much of a worse matchup if he's concerned about his safety. After all the Rams defensive coordinator oversaw a bounty system in his previous job. Sidenote: If I were Gregg Williams every Halloween I'd go as a different bounty hunter, Boba Fett, Dog, Robert De Niro from Midnight Run. What are the chances that Williams literally attempts to bounty hunt Cam during this game? Like if he gets too close to the sideline Williams tries to taze him. Or he slips Aaron Donald a pair of handcuffs to slap on Newton once he cocks his arm back to throw. It would be a bush league move from Williams, but he's one of the bushiest the NFL has to offer, so don't be surprised if that's exactly what happens.

Panthers 26-16

New Orleans @ San Francisco
The 49ers made history this past Wednesday when they became the first team to petition the NFL to have their bye week extended to last the remainder of the season. The league office gave it serious consideration, taking into account the physical and psychological toll the final 9 games will take on San Francisco's players and their families. Ultimately though the NFL decided that allowing the Niners to forfeit their remaining contests would rob opposing teams of the confidence boost they'll surely receive from trouncing San Francisco, and insisted they play out the season. Tough break guys. (They'll probably win now)

Saints 31-24

Tennessee @ San Diego
Remember when these two teams met in a playoff game following the '06 season? C'mon, you remember; Vince Young was the Titans' starting QB ... Tennessee jumped out to that 6-0 halftime lead but San Diego eventually came back to get the 17-6 victory ... Or how about how Brandon Manumaleuna had those 2 receptions for 18 yards? ... And remember the game lasted 3 hours and 4 minutes ... And there were 65,640 fans in attendance at Qualcomm Stadium ... And who could forget Ahmard Hall's 2 yard run to end the 1st quarter? Jeez you guys don't remember ANYTHING about that game. You should go educate yourself about it at a reference site for pro football. I hear Pro Football Reference is a good one, but I wouldn't know because I've never had to use it as an aide. That's something hack writers do when they don't got the chops to write original material each and every week.

Chargers 30-28

Indianapolis @ Green Bay
Prior to last season this was the matchup that many picked for Super Bowl 50. Fast forward to midseason 2016 and we're far from this being a potential Super Bowl, except probably to some Rudy-esque turbo on the Colts special teams who plays "every game like it's the Super Bowl." Yeah we get it guy, you put 110% into everything you do and we're all super impressed. Let's take a look at the Indy roster to find the guy most likely to fit this bill. How about Long Snapper Matt Overton
? Yeah look at that guy, he'd probably say something like that. Man this Overton guy really gets under my skin, or at least the prospective Matt Overton that I've now convinced myself is exactly who he is. Because of Overton and how lame he is I have no choice but to pick Green Bay.

Packers 34-24

Sunday Night

Denver @ Oakland
Let's kick it to our man Cris Collinsworth for his two cents on this AFC West battle:

Hmm, that went in an unexpected direction. I'd say I probably have a slight case of Raider fever, but I'm trying to get rid of it. As a result I'm taking the Broncos and some prescription medication.

Broncos 23-20 

Monday Night

Buffalo @ Seattle
Breaking News: Percy Harvin is coming out of retirement to play for the Bills. We go now to his contract signing ... There's Percy with the the contract in front of him, coach Rex Ryan has just handed him a pen, and here he goes, and uh oh, Harvin's hand seems to be cramping up on him. He's shaking it back and forth pretty violently and oh no he's accidentally slammed it into the table. He appears to be in some serious pain now. He seems to be attempting to push his chair away from the table but it looks to be caught on the rug and oh boy, his chair has tipped backwards sending Mr. Harvin flying off the makeshift stage. Here comes the stretcher folks. They've loaded Harvin up and they're now exiting the room. Well there's a good sign, he's giving us a thumbs up on his way out and oh dear lord his thumb just got snagged on the door handle and bent completely backwards. It appears his comeback has been derailed even before it began due to at least four injuries sustained at this contract signing. Get well soon Percy.

Seahawks 20-10