No time for a proper introduction, so we'll go with a truncated version of the same tired refrain: Tom, Joe and I will be picking three games against the spread all season. 3-2-1 confidence points (in descending order of the below listing of the picks) is in effect. They're white, I'm black…they live in New York, I live in California. We're the original Odd Couple, etc.
Chargers (-9) over RAIDERS: In week 14 of last season, I made a prediction that the Raiders were going to break out of their awfulness to defend their home turf against the hated Chargers. I figured with a combination of Tomlinson and Rivers being sullen and the Raiders trying to be respectable, they'd at least keep it close. I will not make that mistake again any time soon. The Raiders continue to make inexplicable personnel decisions and a fully healthy Chargers team is going to cover this spread before the half. At this point, I officially feel bad for Raider fans.
PANTHERS (+1) over Eagles: So, let me get this straight. The defense lost their coordinator to cancer in the offseason. Their best defensive player is suiting up for the Broncos. Their injury-prone (and reportedly somewhat injured) but awesome running back turned 30 last week. If their quarterback happens to go 0-2 in the first two weeks, his entire city will turn on him (again) and want him to replaced with Michael Vick. They don't have Correll Buckhalter to bail them out anymore. All of this makes them the road favorite against the Panthers? I think not. The Panthers win this outright.
Cowboys (-5.5) over BUCS: To sum up the Bucs: their starter is Byron Leftwich. Their running back was let go by the Giants. They fired their offensive coordinator last week. Their coach is one year older than me and has never even been a coordinator. And on top of all of that, the Cowboys have Mr. September at the helm. The only reason I have reservations here is because it's possible the Cowboys are already looking to their primetime home opener against the Giants next week. Can you have a sleeper loss in the first week? We'll find out soon.
PATRIOTS (-11) over Bills: In a game with this little defense, the Bills could play well and lose by two touchdowns. I'm not expecting them to play well.
SEAHAWKS (-8) over Rams: Could the Rams maybe be worse this season than last season?
Cowboys (-5.5) over BUCS: I'm not quite buying the addition-through-subtraction re: Owens, but I do think three healthy RBs gives Dallas sufficient advantage.
PATRIOTS (-11) over Bills: Here are the scores from the last three times these two teams have met with Tom Brady under center for the Pats: 38-7, 56-10, 28-6. You know what that means…another week's worth of even more insufferable than usual "BS Report" podcasts. Sorry, Joe.
Chargers (-9) over RAIDERS: Like most people in an abusive relationship, I've made excuses for Al Davis and the Raiders over years. The petty '80s vendettas with QB Steve Beuerlein and Hall of Fame RB Marcus Allen. The borderline extortionist efforts that the team employed for a new football home in the '90s. The entirety of this past decade. No more. I'm officially in "profit from my team's mediocrity" mode. Hello, online gambling account! Good to see you again.
Chiefs (+12.5) over RAVENS: I s'pose I should find a reasonable underdog. I don't gamble enough to know this as gospel, but anytime a team like the Ravens – a unit that seems to win/lose every game by a score of 18-12 – is a double-digit favorite over anyone, I'm leery. LEERY~!