Thursday, November 18, 2010

2010 NFL Pickery -- Week #11

Last Week:

Aaron: 10-4
Tom: 7-7
Joe: 5-9


Joe: 95-49
Aaron: 87-57
Tom: 84-60

Chicago at Miami (Thursday Night)

Joe: Yes, I know Miami is down to its third-string QB, and while I actually think Tyler Thigpen is a fine stopgap for a team that doesn't exactly air it out like crazy, you'd still expect me to make the joke about the various antiquated Dolphins quarterbacks who will be plugged in behind center. I'm here to tell you that I am better than that. (...Scott Mitchell.) (Jay Fiedler.) (Ray Lucas.) (Brock Berlin.) (Almost.) Pick: Chicago

Aaron: I'm going to keep right on picking the home team in these antiquated and unnecessary Thursday night games until they're abolished by the NFL or until the Detroit Lions host their annual Thanksgiving Day disemboweling. Whichever comes first. Pick: Miami

Detroit at Dallas

Aaron: I'm not saying the Cowboys WILL go from 2-7 to a seven or eight win season, but save for their two games still to play against Philadelphia, are there any Dallas opponents left that look like a guaranteed loss for the Cowboys? Home against the Saints on a short week? On the road against a very shaky Colts team? They might win seven or eight games! Pick: Dallas

Joe: This shouldn't be entirely surprising that the Cowboys got a second wind. A talented team worn down by several years of bad coaching gets rejuvenated by a shake-up. It's not something that will last, but if they can get some momentum while they're in this afterglow period, these kinds of things can snowball. Or they could foolishly overlook the Lions and get snaked right here. Which is kind of the 2010 Cowboys thing to do. Pick: Detroit

Arizona at Kansas City

Aaron: So, where does last week's postgame beef between Kansas City head coach Todd Haley and Denver head coach Josh McDaniels rank among the most insignificant feuds of the last 20 years? I've got it coming in just behind
Rocky Balboa v. Tommy "The Machine" Gunn in Rocky V. Pick: Kansas City

Joe: ...But just ahead of
Pumkin v. New York on Flavor of Love. Arizona's really settled into its groove as the dregs of the NFL. Pick: Kansas City

Green Bay at Minnesota

In Brett Favre's defense, his 2010 season is still less embarrassing than every rapper who's over 40. "The Power" won, Chuck D.
The Power won. Pick: Green Bay

Joe: Doesn't it seem like the road team is always winning in this rivalry? Except for earlier this year, of course. My point, though, is that Minnesota shouldn't expect too big of a home-field advantage. Pick: Green Bay

Baltimore at Carolina

Aaron: Two weeks ago, Brian St. Pierre was a stay-at-home dad with five career pass attempts over an eight-year NFL career that everyone thought was over. On Sunday, he'll be starting at quarterback for the Panthers. I hope Disney will at least wait a week before signing Dennis Quaid to play St. Pierre in the inevitable cinematic endeavor. Pick: Baltimore

Joe: Against any team with a realistic chance of winning, Baltimore's shockingly permissive defense would be the story. We'll wait for a week when they face an NFL offense. Pick: Baltimore

Cleveland at Jacksonville

Aaron: There were actually some NFL experts out there who excoriated Cleveland for not playing for the tie late in last week's overtime loss. For the tie?! Would the Browns still have been invited to a bowl game or would the 1955 Fighting Irish get the nod, instead? Pick: Cleveland

Joe: I'm going to look like an idiot if they lay an egg here, but if you're asking me to pick the six best AFC teams as they're playing right now, the Browns are at worst a tie for sixth. They're digging from too deep a hole right now to actually make the playoffs, but at the very least they're doing the world a service by distracting Cleveland fans from their unbecoming
LeBron Rage Disorder. Pick: Cleveland

Oakland at Pittsburgh

Aaron: My Raiders are getting some national recognition just as everyone's jumping off the Steelers bandwagon. While Pittsburgh's offensive line is in shambles and the season-ending loss of DE Aaron Smith is huge, I just can't pick my team to beat a legitimate playoff contender on the road until they beat a legitimate playoff contender on the road. (Feel free to post this on the bulletin board in the visiting locker room, Raiders.) Pick: Pittsburgh

Joe: I'm inclined to agree with all that, Cam. That said, if I'm a Steelers fan, this game scares the crap out of me. Pick: Pittsburgh

Buffalo at Cincinnati

Aaron: Despite his disingenuous denials, I have no doubt that Joe was going with the "reverse jinx" theory when he picked against his hometown Bills last week. With Buffalo's first win out of the way, we can both go back to sincerely picking against them. Pick: Cincinnati

Joe: I'm not even sure a reverse jinx scenario benefits my poor beleaguered Bills right now. I'll say this: at the very least, the offense has made then a watchable team at least. Then again, when two heads of your three-headed dragon are named "Fred Jackson" and "Steve Johnson," marketing does become an issue. Watch out, "John Smith" of "State University." Our very, very, very early draft pick is looking at you! Pick: Cincinnati

Washington at Tennessee

When Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan's lifeless body is found on the grounds of FedEx Field alongside a blood-covered can of Campbell's Chunky Soup and
Donovan McNabb's mom nowhere to be found... Pick: Tennessee

Joe: What are the odds Randy Moss "defects" to the Redskins after this game, like Soviet winter Olympians of old? It's about the one missing element from Moss's human resources nightmare of a season. Pick: Tennessee

Houston at N.Y. Jets

Aaron: I love when any prognosticator offers up the "if this game was in [the home stadium of the visiting team]..." qualifier before cravenly picking the obvious favorite. Houston's defense is abysmal, but the Jets have let their last few opponents keep the score close on offense. The Texans move the ball well enough to put a scare into the home team. Boy, if this game was in Houston... Pick: NY Jets

Joe: So another Texans season bites the dust with a strong offense deep-sixed by a terrible defense. I can't decide whether their particular brand of near-miss frustration is better or worse than the Bills' decade of putridity. Pick: NY Jets

Atlanta at St. Louis

Aaron: Over the last six games, the Rams have alternated wins and losses...perfectly in sync with alternating home and road games. St. Louis lost last week on the road, therefore they can't lose! Pick: St. Louis

Joe: The Rams losing last week at the Niners really bummed me out. I guess they're another season away from an 8-8 division title. Pick: Atlanta

Tampa Bay at San Francisco

The 49ers haven't scored more than 24 points in a game all season AND have only beaten one team with a winning record. Yes, it was the Raiders. No, they're not playing the Raiders this week. Pick: Tampa Bay

Joe: Much like the Bears, fate and the schedules have been kind to the Bucs at this crucial stage of the season where upstarts either continue to pad their records or get exposed as pretenders. Tampa's probably another season away from being an actual contender, but like I said, the schedule's being kind. Pick: Tampa Bay

Seattle at New Orleans

Aaron: Saints RB Reggie Bush returns! Oh, how New Orleans missed your 80 all-purpose yards per game. Pick: Cincinnati

Joe: Scoff if you must, but I trust this Saints team FAR more when they have that Bush option to turn to. Pick: New Orleans

Indianapolis at New England

Aaron: TBG reader Elena warned me. "Peyton's going to crash and burn this year, Cam". After a strong start, Peyton Manning's fantasy ju-ju dropped from "exceptional" to "solid" to "I'm THIS close to starting Kyle Orton over him this week". I'm trapped. I want to bench Manning, but I couldn't live with myself if he goes off. Suicide watch in 3, 2, 1... Pick: New England

Joe: New England's defense ought to be the cure for what ails Manning. As for the cure for what ails everybody Manning is supposed to give the ball to? Surgery, mostly. Pick: Indianapolis

N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia

Aaron: 45 points in the first half of last Monday Night's game, Michael Vick? And, in front of my six-year-old son? This'll be worse than the dog thing if you turn Jalen against baseball, you son of a bitch. Pick: Philadelphia

Joe: So the Giants learned a valuable lesson that no NFC East win is a gimmie. The Eagles learned that touchdowns are pretty easy to come by when the opposing team has taken the week off from tackling. Giants angry. Philly fans overconfident (when they should be petrified that the Giants' QB-killing ways could resurface here). Pick: NY Giants

Denver at San Diego

Aaron: The predictable road to 10-6 begins for the Chargers here. Want some free advice, Chargers fans? If you wait until the three-day Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend (or whenever your team is eliminated from the playoffs) you'll get a great deal on those "AFC West Champions" car flags y'all like so much. Pick: San Diego

Joe: Observe as Cam'ron's take on the Chargers exhibits the same combination of "ass-covering pessimism" and "naked hatred" that Joe generally points towards the Patriots. It's a strong defense posture -- low risk, high reward. Anyway, a classic "all our eggs in one basket" last-gasp win by the Broncos last week. San Diddy getting healthy (or healthier at least) at the right time. Division title within reach. Exactly the kind of game those damned Patriots would win. Pick: San Diego


SHough610 said...

1) Being an Eagles fan is an... Interesting experience Cam. I don't know if you want J being an Eagles fan (unless you like seeing him cry)
2) I have a bad feeling that the Bills will be just good enough to miss out on Locker in the draft.
3) NO ONE was more shocked than me about the Eagles-Giants game. Totally agreed with Joe, I even said "I wish I could bet on things like 'the Eagles lose a demoralizing 27-10 loss that isn't even that close'".

Elena said...

I love it when my crystal ball works! To be fair, though, Manning didn't so much fall apart as my new boyfriend, the Pocket-Sized Wonder Danny Woodhead, assured himself a place on Belichick's Nice List this Christmas. If past years are anything to go by, Woodhead can expect begrudging admiration, a leggy Brazilian model, and a Super Bowl ring or 12 (one for each big toe!) in his stocking.

Aaron C. said...

@Sam -- I'm worried about Jalen. The wife inexplicably bought him a 10-inch Donovan McNabb action figure last spring (clearance, $2.99!) and he's WAY more into daddy's fantasy football than any 6 year old who ever lived.

@Elena -- My favorite part of the game was the two-play sequence when Woodhead scored the touchdown and then, on the kickoff, he made the tackle. I look forward to all the appropriately-coded euphemisms coming his way (gritty, gutty, hard-nosed, throwback, Football Eckstein).

Carrie said...

Some might construe picking Cincinnati to win in the game between Seattle and New Orleans as cheating, but you should probably give yourself the benefit of the doubt and award yourself the win. Actually, the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce would probably be super psyched if you could make "Cincinnati: The New Orleans and/or Seattle of the Midwest!" catch on. They haven't experienced much success with "Cincinnati: The Ohio City Less Loved by Drew Carey."

Aaron C. said...


I do that every week (cutting and pasting an above paragraph). Either I catch it before I send it to Joe or Joe catches it for me.

So, blame Joe.

(I really *did* wanna pick New Orleans there. Isn't it clear from my quip? Ugh.)

Carrie said...

It was clear - I just enjoyed poor lame little Cincinnati's moment of glory (before it learned you only asked it to prom on a dare from New Orleans, etc.).