Archive for September, 2012

I had a rough go of it with last week’s picks, including my mortal lock that the Pats would win. In case you missed it, they were stunned by the Cardinals after a last-second field goal attempt by Stephen Gostkowski sailed wide. Here’s hoping I can turn it around this week!

WEEK 2 RECORD: 9-7
SEASON RECORD: 20-12

WEEK 3

THU, SEP 20

8:20 PM ET, NY Giants @ Carolina – Eli Manning threw for enough passing yards to cover two games last week, and it might take a near-repeat performance to go into Carolina and snag a win. It will be interesting to see how the Giants handle the backfield with Ahmad Bradshaw’s mysterious neck injury.
PICK: Giants, 28-21.
CONFIDENCE: 6

SUN, SEP 23

1:00 PM ET, St. Louis @ Chicago – Chicago as a team isn’t nearly as bad as they played in last week’s Thursday night debacle at Green Bay. I expect Jay Cutler and company to bounce back against a mediocre St. Louis team.
PICK: Bears, 27-23.
CONFIDENCE: 10

1:00 PM ET, Tampa Bay @ Dallas – I really have no idea what to make of either of these teams. Tampa Bay should be 2-0, but their secondary went from glory to goat in the 4th quarter last week. Dallas managed to do what Tampa Bay couldn’t by beating the Giants, and I like how Dallas plays at home.
PICK: Cowboys, 24-20.
CONFIDENCE: 4

1:00 PM ET, San Francisco @ Minnesota – Some people say to hide your mistakes and sweep them under the rug as a writer, but I REFUSE! Last week, my 16-point confidence pick was the Patriots to take care of business against the Cardinals. As I brought up in my open, I was WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. There is just no way it happens two weeks in a row with this lopsided matchup on the slate of games, right?
PICK: 49ers, 24-14.
CONFIDENCE: 16

1:00 PM ET, Detroit @ Tennessee – Jake Locker looks like a confused little boy out on the field, and I feel bad for him and CJ2K in their futile attempts to play behind that atrocity of an offensive line. Detroit should be able to handle their business on the road here if they think they’re a playoff team.
PICK: Lions, 31-20.
CONFIDENCE: 11

1:00 PM ET, Cincinnati @ Washington – Through two games, RGIII looks like the real deal; however, it’s only 2 games. That being said, Brandon Weeden looked like Dan Marino last week when he torched the Bengals’ defense for 300+ yards and two scores. Expect the man who refuses to display the Nike logo to have a field day this week.
PICK: Redskins, 27-24.
CONFIDENCE: 5

1:00 PM ET, NY Jets @ Miami – I don’t think Reggie Bush can maintain his current pace the entire season, and I haven’t seen anything from Ryan Tannehill that leads me to believe he can beat a solid team. This leads me to my next point: victories over the Raiders should only be worth ¾ of a win this year.
PICK: Jets, 20-17.
CONFIDENCE: 7

1:00 PM ET, Kansas City @ New Orleans – Both these teams are 0-2, but only one of them is really as bad as their record indicates. Hint: It’s NOT the Saints. I expect to see a lot of passing yards in what should be a very high-scoring affair.
PICK: Saints, 34-24.
CONFIDENCE: 14

1:00 PM ET, Buffalo @ Cleveland – C.J. Spiller…and that’s all I have to say about that.
PICK: Bills, 27-13.
CONFIDENCE: 9

1:00 PM ET, Jacksonville @ Indianapolis – Back in the mid-2000’s, you’d expect a classic battle for the AFC South division lead when these two rivals squared off. Nowadays, you have a mediocre team led by a rookie quarterback playing at home against an awful team led by a second-year signal-caller. Go ahead and give me the mediocre home team.
PICK: Colts, 24-21.
CONFIDENCE: 8

4:05 PM ET, Philadelphia @ Arizona – The Cardinals are SERIOUSLY 2-0? You serious Clark? The Eagles are also 2-0, and have managed to win not one, but BOTH of their games by exactly 1 point. I think the Eagles are for real, and I think the Cardinals are frauds.
PICK: Eagles, 24-17.
CONFIDENCE: 12

4:05 PM ET, Atlanta @ San Diego – Another matchup of undefeated teams, although in this case, I believe both these teams are playoff-caliber. The Chargers have looked great, but they’ve played Tennessee and Oakland, so it’s hard to put a ton of stock into those victories. Atlanta has looked great as well, and they actually have a victory over a legitimate opponent in Denver. I think the Falcons make the long trip out West and snag a close victory.
PICK: Falcons, 24-23.
CONFIDENCE: 2

4:25 PM ET, Houston @ Denver – Until either team proves me wrong, I’m sticking to my preseason Super Bowl picks of Houston and San Francisco. That doesn’t mean I think either team is infallible, and I think this week the Texans show it, as Peyton Manning orchestrates a come-from-behind, game-winning drive in the final minutes at home.
PICK: Broncos, 27-24.
CONFIDENCE: 1

4:25 PM ET, Pittsburgh @ Oakland – The Raiders are the worst team in the NFL, and they don’t really have a reasonable chance to win a game until they play Jacksonville in week 7.
PICK: Steelers, 27-17.
CONFIDENCE: 15

8:3 0 PM ET, New England @ Baltimore – Both these teams have to be severely disappointed in their 1-1 records, but they have no one to blame but themselves. Baltimore is a better team this year, and in my opinion, the only serious threat to the Texans in the AFC.
PICK: Ravens, 27-24.
CONFIDENCE: 3

MON, SEP 24

8:35 PM ET Green Bay @ Seattle – I know Russell Wilson is a great playmaker, but I also believe that Seattle expects him to be more of a “game manager” than a “game changer”. I think his attempts to keep up with A-Rod and the Packers offense will cause him to force some throws, resulting in a couple costly interceptions and a Seattle defeat.
PICK: Packers, 31-17.
CONFIDENCE: 13

This week, I’ve added a confidence level I have in making each pick. The confidence levels range from 1 to 16, where 16 is the pick I have the most confidence in, and 1 is the pick I have the least confidence in.

WEEK 1 RECORD: 11-5
SEASON RECORD: 11-5

WEEK 2

THU, SEP 13

8:20 PM ET, Chicago @ Green Bay – A lot of weapons on offense for both teams should make this an exciting game to watch. In the end, I think there is no way Aaron Rodgers starts the season out 0-2 at home.
PICK: Packers, 28-24.
CONFIDENCE: 11

SUN, SEP 16

1:00 PM ET, Tampa Bay @ NY Giants – The Giants are looking to bounce back from that embarrassing loss to the Cowboys in Week 1, and I have very little doubt that Eli and Co. will be successful.
PICK: Giants, 24-17.
CONFIDENCE: 14

1:00 PM ET, Oakland @ Miami – Reggie Bush versus Darren McFadden. Go ahead and give me McFadden.
PICK: Raiders, 20-16.
CONFIDENCE: 7

1:00 PM ET, Houston @ Jacksonville – Houston rolled over the Dolphins in week 1 as expected, while Jacksonville suffered a deflating loss in overtime. I think the hangover from that game trickles over into this week.
PICK: Texans, 28-17.
CONFIDENCE: 15

1:00 PM ET, Cleveland @ Cincinnati – Tim Couch. Ty Detmer. Doug Pederson. Kelly Holcomb. Jeff Garcia. Trent Dilfer. Charlie Frye. Derek Anderson. Brady Quinn. Colt McCoy…ANDDDDD Brandon Weeden. WOW. Just wow.
PICK: Bengals, 21-17.
CONFIDENCE: 13

1:00 PM ET, Kansas City @ Buffalo – Both these teams allowed 40+ points in blowout losses last week, so I’m going to pick the Chiefs, because they actually played against a legitimately good team.
PICK: Chiefs, 24-21.
CONFIDENCE: 5

1:00 PM ET, Baltimore @ Philadelphia – This is probably an extremely dumb pick, considering how GOOD the Ravens new high-flying offense looked week 1, and how BAD Mike Vick looked on his way to four week 1 interceptions. Something tells me Vick rights the ship this week in another close victory.
PICK: Eagles, 28-27.
CONFIDENCE: 2

1:00 PM ET, New Orleans @ Carolina – This should be a game filled with a lot of fireworks of the offensive variety. If I’m not mistaken, I believe the laws regarding fireworks are a little more lax in Louisiana.
PICK: Saints, 35-24.
CONFIDENCE: 8

1:00 PM ET, Arizona @ New England – One word: Bloodbath.
PICK: Patriots, 34-17.
CONFIDENCE: 16

1:00 PM ET, Minnesota @ Indianapolis – Andrew Luck struggled throwing the deep ball in week 1, while Christian Ponder looked surprisingly efficient and effective. I think Luck will have a better game this week, but I think the Vikings do just enough to squeak out a victory.
PICK: Vikings, 20-17.
CONFIDENCE: 1

4:05 PM ET, Washington @ St. Louis – The Rams secondary had Matt Stafford’s number last week, picking off the Lions quarterback 3 times, and they still managed to lose. RGIII looked NFL-ready versus the Saints, and I think he leads the Skins to another W this week.
PICK: Redskins, 24-21.
CONFIDENCE: 4

4:05 PM ET, Dallas @ Seattle – Seattle had no business losing to Arizona in week 1 and they should come out pretty fired up this week. However, I think Dallas is the better team, and I believe they show it by going on the road and snagging a win in a nail-biter.
PICK: Cowboys, 21-20.
CONFIDENCE: 6

4:25 PM ET, NY Jets @ Pittsburgh – Peyton Manning picked apart the vaunted Steelers defense in week 1, but Mark Sanchez most certainly IS NOT Peyton Manning. I expect Mike Wallace to be a bigger part of the offense for Pittsburgh this week, now that he got paid and is back in game shape.
PICK: Steelers, 24-20.
CONFIDENCE: 9

4:25 PM ET, Tennessee @ San Diego – Chris Johnson had 11 carries for a whopping 4 yards in week 1. It’s hard for me to pick a team that can’t move the ball to save their lives on the ground, so give me the Bolts.
PICK: Chargers, 27-21.
CONFIDENCE: 10

8:20 PM ET, Detroit @ San Francisco – The oh-so-hyped handshake-gate rematch is finally upon us. If it was being played in Detroit, I’d probably flip a coin. However, it’s on the West coast, and Candlestick is a tough place to go in to and get a victory these days.
PICK: 49ers, 27-21.
CONFIDENCE: 12

MON, SEP 17

8:30 PM ET Denver @ Atlanta – This Monday-night matchup is just as even as last week’s, but features two much better teams. Peyton Manning is a better quarterback than Matt Ryan, but Ryan’s supporting cast is so good that it’s almost unfair.
PICK: Falcons, 28-24.
CONFIDENCE: 3

Joe’s Weekly NFL Picks (Week 1)

Posted: September 5, 2012 by JLCook33 in NFL
Tags: , , , ,

WED, SEP 5

Dallas @ NY Giants – Too many injuries for the Cowboys to knock off the defending Super Bowl champs on the road.
PICK: Giants, 24-21.

SUN, SEP 9

Indianapolis @ Chicago – Will Peyton Manning’s protege, rookie quarterback Andrew Luck, go into Soldier Field and win his first NFL game against this defensive unit? Short answer: Nope.
PICK: Bears, 27-14.

Philadelphia @ Cleveland – All of Philadelphia’s offensive weapons are finally healthy, Vick included. The Cleveland QB carousel continues, with Weeden being thrown to the dogs against Philly’s tough pass rush.
PICK: Eagles, 31-7.

New England @ Tennessee – It will be interesting to see how Tom Brady and off-season acquisition Brandon Lloyd gel. I am also interested to see how much Josh McDaniels uses Stevan Ridley.
PICK: Patriots, 31-20.

Atlanta @ Kansas City – Arrowhead is always a tough place to play, but something tells me that offense wins out against defense in this match-up; Ryan is efficient, and the Falcons have weapons all over the place.
PICK: Falcons, 24-14.

Jacksonville @ Minnesota – I don’t expect either of these teams to do much this season with second-year quarterbacks at the helm. I guess that means I should probably take the home team.
PICK: Vikings, 20-17.

Washington @ New Orleans – Something tells me that even with the suspensions across the board, the Saints won’t lose their home opener against a rookie signal caller.
PICK: Saints, 35-17.

Buffalo @ NY Jets – I can’t wait to watch this offensive thrill-ride! And by offensive thrill-ride, I mean offensive debacle of course. You know what that means? I believe the Jets will actually finally score an offensive touchdown…OR EVEN TWO!
PICK: Jets, 16-13.

St. Louis @ Detroit – St. Louis loves to pound the rock on the ground with S-Jax, and the Lions have one hell of an aerial attack. In the modern-day NFL, with the rules they have in place, the edge in these two contrasting styles ALMOST always goes to the team that can pass.
PICK: Lions, 31-21.

Miami @ Houston – With Schaub back at the helm, I expect the Texans to be a Super Bowl contender this year. With Tannehill at the helm, I expect the Dolphins to be a first-pick-in-the-NFL-Draft contender this year.
PICK: Texans, 35-13.

San Francisco @ Green Bay – NFC Championship preview in week 1…let me snag some popcorn and soda for this one. It is my humble opinion (and the correct opinion) that Aaron Rodgers is the best offensive player in the NFL, and Patrick Willis is the best defensive player in the NFL. I give the cheeseheads the edge because this one is at Lambeau.
PICK: Packers, 24-23.

Seattle @ Arizona – I’m glad the 49ers/Packers game is one of the late afternoon games, because I wouldn’t want to be stuck watching this mess. I’m sorry if I can’t get excited about the Skelton vs. Wilson match-up behind center. I think the Seahawks defense ends up being the difference.
PICK: Seahawks, 20-17.

Carolina @ Tampa Bay – Can Josh Freeman bounce back to the 2010 version of himself? Can Cam Newton recreate the year he had in 2011? Is Vincent Jackson still a soft diva afraid to go over the middle? The answers to all these questions should start to unfold in week 1. I’m saying the answers are no, sorta, and indubitably, respectively.
PICK: Panthers, 27-20.

Pittsburgh @ Denver – Let the Peyton Manning era begin in Denver, and may the odds ever be in his favor. Seriously though, I wonder if he has nightmares of idiot-kicker Mike Vanderjagt’s kick sailing wide every time he plays against the Steelers. It may only be the regular season, but he gets semi-vicarious revenge through the leg of Matt Prater.
PICK: Broncos, 23-21.

MON, SEP 10

Cincinnati @ Baltimore – I think this year is the last go-round for Ed Reed and Ray-Ray, and I think the Baltimore defense is still good enough to compete for a Super Bowl. If Flacco can avoid mistakes and Ray Rice can stay healthy, I expect a great year; I expect it to start week 1.
PICK: Ravens, 24-14.

San Diego @ Oakland – This one is a coin flip, and it should be a great cap to week 1 action in the NFL. I expect Philip Rivers to throw for 300+ yards, and McFadden to run for 125+ yards. Remember what I said earlier about teams that can pass versus teams that can run? Well, I don’t want to be a hypocrite…so I won’t be a hypocrite.
PICK: Chargers, 27-24.