If not for the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs tripping over their own dangly parts, I would have put forth an absolute monstrous performance in my NFL Week 13 picks. It was an incredible display of prognostications, but one I can’t celebrate too much since plenty of people had great weeks. It sucks for me, because I’d love to really dance a jig here.
This is how I did.
Straight up: 13-3
Against the spread: 10-6
Straight up: 11-5
Against the spread: 10-6
Straight up: 117-75
Against the spread: 101-91
My best picks were the upsets. I had the Minnesota Vikings taking out the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta and the San Francisco 49ers, with Jimmy Garoppolo making his first start, beating the Chicago Bears. But, again, nothing can surpass my outright pegging of the Pittsburgh Steelers barely slipping by the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday Night football. I told you the Steelers play down to their opponents and they did for three and a half quarters Monday night.
My worst picks? I have two that I want to ask to step outside and fist fight. The first was the Denver Broncos over the Miami Dolphins. I’ve been wrong off and on about both these teams all season, so it’s no mystery to me how I completely whiffed on this game.
My second worst pick was the Kansas City Chiefs over the New York Jets. There’s something severely broken about this Kansas City squad and losing to the Jets after scoring 31 points on offense is just an outrage.
Checking out my peers in the NFL picks community, Jarrett Bell of USA Today smoked us all like a pack of Kools, going a perfect 16-0 straight up. The worst week belonged to Jonathan Jones of MMQB who went 7-9. He was the only major pickster to post a losing record this week and, yes, he should feel plenty of shame for that one.
On the season, Jeff Ratcliffe from Pro Football Focus leads the way with a 135-57 record. Doing the math, that puts me a solid 18 games behind him with four weeks and the playoffs to go. It doesn’t look good for The First Man.
Since most everybody had at least a double-digit win week, I didn’t pick up a lot of ground. I’m still in the middle of the pack, tied with the NFL Network’s Kurt Warner, ESPN’s Dan Graziano and Pro Football Focus’ Neil Hornsby.
Against the spread, the best week went to Jarrett Bell of USA Today who finished 13-1, even though the asshole didn’t pick two games. The worst mark belonged to Kate Hairopoulos from the Dallas Morning News who finished 4-12.
In the season standings against the spread, I’m tied at No. 5 in the country with Jamey Eisenberg of CBS. I’m just six games back of No. 1 Tom Mantzouranis of MMQB. I have plenty of time to catch him.
EARLY NFL WEEK 14 LINES
New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons (+1.5), O/U: 53.5
Indianapolis Colts at Buffalo Bills (N/A), O/U: N/A
Minnesota Vikings at Carolina Panthers (+2.5), O/U: 41.0
Chicago Bears at Cincinnati Bengals (-6), O/U: 38.0
Green Bay Packers at Cleveland Browns (+3.5), O/U: 40.5
San Francisco 49ers at Houston Texans (-3), O/U: 43.0
Oakland Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs (-4), O/U: 47.0
Detroit Lions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (N/A), O/U: N/A
Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants (+4), O/U: 41.5
Tennessee Titans at Arizona Cardinals (+3), O/U: 43.5
New York Jets at Denver Broncos (+1), O/U: 41.0
Washington Redskins at Los Angeles Chargers (-6), O/U: 46.0
Seattle Seahawks at Jacksonville Jaguars (-3), O/U: 39.5
Philadelphia Eagles at Los Angeles Rams (-2), O/U: 49.5
Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers (-5.5), O/U: 43.5
New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins (+11.5), O/U: 47.0
Interesting games? The two that don’t have lines or totals yet bear watching. The NFL sportsbooks are obviously waiting to see if Tyrod Taylor suits up for the Bills against Colts and if Matthew Stafford plays for the Lions against the Buccaneers.
The Chiefs being favored over the Raiders by four catches my eye. Oakland was the team that knocked the Chiefs off to begin this skid. This game could be a battle for the AFC West lead, something that seemed unthinkable a month ago. The Chargers at -6 over the Redskins looks awfully steep to me. I don’t get why the Jaguars are favored over the Seahawks, even at home. As much as I love the Rams, I have a hard time seeing them as a -2 fave over the Eagles. On that one, I’d love to be wrong.
IF THE NFL PLAYOFFS STARTED TODAY…
The AFC playoff bracket didn’t change this week. The Steelers (10-2) are still the one and the Patriots (10-2) the two. The Titans (8-4) are the No. 3 and the Chiefs (6-6) barely hold on to the No. 4. Your Wild Card teams are currently the Ravens (7-5) and the Jaguars (8-4).
Your most realistic spoilers here are the Chargers (6-6) and the Raiders (6-6). With Oakland playing Kansas City Sunday, they could take over the AFC West or at least hand it to the Chargers for a week.
Mathmatically the Bills (6-6), Jets (5-7) and Bengals (5-7) all still have a shot for that bottom Wild Card spot currently held by the Ravens.
It’s the NFC that’s really done some shuffling. The Vikings (10-2) are now the one seed and the Eagles (10-2) have slipped to two. They face off this weekend against the No. 3 Rams (9-3) with a first round bye at stake. The Saints (9-3) are the four. The Wild Cards are now the Panthers (8-4) and the Seahawks (8-4).
The Falcons (7-5), thanks to their loss to the Vikings this week, dropped out of a Wild Card spot, but are still very much alive. The Lions (6-6), Packers (6-6) and Cowboys (6-6) all still have a realistic shot of sneaking in over the next four weeks. The Cowboys especially with Ezekiel Elliott making his return before season’s end.
COACH INEPTITUDE RANKINGS: MCADOO THE FIRST TO FALL
We have a new No. 1 in the Coach Ineptitude Rankings thanks to the shitcanning of New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo. He’s been No. 1 with a bullet since I started tracking the worst coaches and now he’s been forced to bite down on it. Here’s the new Top Five.
1. Hue Jackson, Cleveland Browns
2. Chuck Pagano, Indianapolis Colts
3. Dirk Koetter, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
4. Vance Joseph, Denver Broncos
5. John Fox, Chicago Bears
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