Week 7 was another lackluster week ATS with many close calls. The SU total was acceptable but could be better. The problem as I see are some of these crazy spreads and it really doesn’t get much easier this week. There are 3 spreads of double digits to go along with 7 more of over a TD. You have to take into account backdoor covers on some of these games. There have been a couple of near miss backdoor covers so it’s prevalent in my mind when making picks. The NFL wants parity and I think they have gotten it to an extent on the field but definitely not in the sportsbook. I don’t recall a season when the spreads have been so large for this many weeks in a row without tightening up. I think as we get closer to crunch time the lines will start to compress but for the time being it’s probably going to be tough sledding.
Injuries were another huge story this week. Starting QB’s going down for multiple weeks or even for the year. It seems like guys were dropping like flies the last few weeks so that makes the picture even a little less clear. It’s been a wild season so far and don’t see any reason for that to stop.
The injuries really got me thinking. I understand that the game is very fast paced and injuries happen but it really seems like the last few years the number of knee injuries are just at a ridiculous level. If you go back maybe 10 years you would didn’t see this level of knee or hamstring injuries. If you go back 20 years it would probably be just a fraction of what it is now. Many of these injuries are happening when no one is even around the guy. I think so much of it is this new artificial turf shit. I still don’t understand why every field isn’t grass. I’m assuming it’s because of the cost which sounds stupid given that the NFL generated billions of dollars. You would think they would have a fucking landscaping budget built in. I know that some of the grass fields turn to shit in the winter time but you can’t convince me it has to be that way. If they can put a fucking hockey rink in these outdoor stadiums then I’m sure there is a way to better take care of the fields in the colder weather cities. I think it breeds a much better version of football where running the ball and stopping the run are a priority. If you do those things well then you can do various things like play action on offense or bringing exotic blitzes on defense. I’m so afraid that the game is going to turn into this gimmicky shit you see all the time in the college game. You’ll just see these vanilla game plans with scores of 52-50 with just all passing or the terrible read option. I’m sorry games like that just aren’t fun to watch. A high scoring game is great if it’s a mix of good football. If a wide receiver gets the ball in the backfield on a designed run that’s not a reverse then I check out. Maybe I’m getting old but I don’t like the direction the game is headed.
YOU TUBE VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Jim Leyland just retired the other day and this is a great clip of him chewing out Barry Bonds in spring training when they were both with the Pirates. Two things about this clip, #1 you might want to turn up the volume as long as your not at work or in front of small children. #2 Barry Bonds never took steroids.
STAND UP COMEDY CLIP OF THE WEEK
Another new segment cause I thought the ones from last week were a decent addition. This is a pretty easy one, when you talking about stand up starting with George Carlin is a pretty much no brainer. You’ve probably seen this but give it 9 minutes again. Joe bless You!
HIGHLY RANKED FANTASY PLAYER THAT WILL SHIT THE BED THIS WEEK
This segment turned out to be a rousing success for old Hal predicting Adrian Peterson would shit the bed despite being the #1 ranked running back on the main fantasy sites. AP was bottled up the entire game scoring only 5.6 points. For some reason Leslie Frazier decided to have Josh Freeman throw the ball over 50 times. What do we have in store this week? This one was really tough as there are a bunch of juicy matchups for the highly ranked and I didn’t want to slide too far down the rankings to find someone. I want it to be a must start player and this week I’m going with AJ Green vs. the Jets.
Ranked #3 WR on both Sportsline & Rotoworld
I think the Jets D will give Andy Dalton enough problems to where he won’t be able to put the same type of numbers he’s had the last 2 games. Interestingly, Green has had 3 monster games this year. All of them have come on the road. He only has 1 TD at home and his best yardage output was 61 yards. They are at home this week.
6 catches, 71 yards 0 TD’s. 7.1 standard fantasy points
WEEK 8’s PICKS
CAR @ TB (+6.5)
Since Tampa is winless they need to do anything to win a game. This would be my game plan if I was Greg Schiano. Since they have this outbreak of MRSA on their team, the plan would consist of informing the opponent after every play that he just came in contact with the infection. Do this play after play. I bet you sometime in the second half someone will short arm a pass or something and maybe you can get a game changing turnover. That my friends is what you call game planning.
Panthers 21 Bucs 13
SF @ JAC (In London) (+17.5)
Speaking of grass fields, this game is being played on the pitch in Wembley Stadium. I’m convinced San Fran plays down to its competition and those game out there always play a little slower because of the length of the grass. I have absolutely no faith in Jacksonville but I feel a backdoor cover coming on this game for some reason.
9ers 28 Jags 13
MIA @ NE (-7.5)
I would think NE is going to be pissed at giving away that game to the Jets last week and they usually don’t lose 2 in a row especially at home or in the division. After the Fins good start they have really struggled finishing games.
Pats 30 Fins 20
DAL @ DET (-3.5)
This would be a game I would have no desire trying to pick. I can’t get a read on Detroit to save my life and you never know how Dallas is going to play.
Boys 28 Lions 27
CLE @ KC (-7.5)
Jason Campbell is starting for the Browns which is reason enough to continue picking KC
Chefs 17 Browns 6
NYG @ PHI (-6.5)
It was nice to see the GMEN get out of the winless column but even being a homer like I am, that was just a brutal game to watch. Leslie Frazier basically gave the game to them. The Giants also caught some breaks with not losing some turnovers that were there for the taking. The Philly QB situation is a little hazy as it looks like Vick will start but it hasn’t been officially announced. I’m going under the assumption Vick plays and I’ll take the Eagles to win but Giants to cover. If he doesn’t then I wouldn’t trust Matt Barkley to be able to do anything and would have picked a Giant out right win.
Eagles 27 GMEN 23
BUF @ NO (-7.5)
The Bills got a nice win last week but I don’t see Thad Lewis being able to do anything in the Superdome.
Saints 31 Bills 17
PIT @ OAK (+3.5)
Pitt has played their way back into at least conversation of playoffs but I don’t think they are capable of beating anyone by more than a field goal.
Steelers 20 Raiders 17
NYJ @ CIN (-6.5)
As much as I hate the Jets and Rex Ryan you have to give them credit for last week’s win vs the Pats. That will be just about enough of praising the Jets.
Bengals 24 Jets 14
ATL @ ARI (-2.5)
Atlanta is a mess of injuries. I can honestly say the following statement. I haven’t seen even 20 seconds of an Arizona game this year so I have no idea about them. I know Carson Palmer has almost as many INT’s (13) as Eli and I thought that would be impossible.
Falcons 24 Cards 20
WAS @ DEN (-13.5)
This is an interesting one. I’m assume the line that is this high under the assumption that Manning will be pissed losing in Indy and will take it out on Washington who’s defense isn’t very good. This I agree with but the problem is Denver’s D isn’t very good either and I think Washington can keep it under 2 TD’s.
Broncos 38 Skins 28
GB @ MIN (+7.5)
Minnesota looks like a mess and I believe they will start Christian Ponder instead of Josh Freeman due to a concussion. I don’t think it matters.
Pack 28 Vikes 14
SEA @ STL (+10.5)
The Rams are another mash unit. I heard they called both Tim Tebow and Brett Farve. I don’t know if that is accurate or not but I think that goes to show what is thought about Kellen Clemens.
Hawks 30 Rams 12
LAST WEEK & YTD RESULTS
Week 7 ATS Record 6-9
Season ATS Record 18-26
Week 7 SU Record 10-5
Season SU Record 29-15
Family Guy Quote
“Aw, the South! Isn’t that the place where the black guys are lazy, and the white guys are just as lazy, but they’re mad at the black guys for being so lazy.” -Peter Griffin