Sunday, December 23, 2012

2012 NFL Pickery -- Week #16

Last Week

Joe: 13-2
Aaron: 7-9

Current Standings

Joe: 145-76-1
Aaron: 136-86-1

Atlanta at Detroit (Saturday)

Aaron: Oh, of course. I started Lions QB Matt Stafford during the first round of my big-money league fantasy playoffs last week.  After putting up solid numbers over the past three weeks, he gave me six goddam points against the execrable Cardinals when I needed him the most.  When my eight-year-old son asks why there are no presents under the Christmas tree, I'm going to show him a picture of YOUR FAT FACE, STAFFORD.  Pick: Atlanta

Joe: I don't want to talk about him anymore. I should probably feel bad for Detroit fans, having been teased with a playoff team last year only to have it cruelly yanked away. But between Stafford and the fact that seemingly every week I went up against Mike Leshoure who scored as many touchdowns are he possibly could and still have the Lions lose ... let's say my sympathy has been drained. Pick: Atlanta

Oakland at Carolina

Aaron: My Raiders insist that third-string QB Terrelle Pryor will see some opportunities this week in third down situations and in the red zone.  Y'know, because when you're 4-10 and have scored the sixth fewest points in the league, you entrust the offense to the long-term project who's been on the field for three plays in his two-year NFL career.  Pick: Carolina

Joe: Carolina is pulling the old Bills trick of pulling a 7-9 season out of a terrible start and sabotaging any prospects to improve through the draft. Well done! Pick: Carolina

New Orleans at Dallas

Aaron: Pretty sure it was preordained that the 2012 NFC East would end in a spectacular clusterfuck heading into the final week, so I'll pick accordingly.  Pick: Dallas

Joe: What do you think goes through Jerry Jones's mind when he looks at the Saints, a team whose season was deep-sixed by the commissioner's office (or so the outrage goes). Does he feel like the career bank-robber who's been on the run his whole life looking at someone get popped? Pick: Dallas

Tennessee at Green Bay

Aaron: While the Packers seem to be getting healthy at juuust the right time, the nitpicky cynic in me can't help but point out that they've allowed most of their 2012 opponents to keep the score close all season.  They'll be a fascinating storyline in January.  Less so against the continued collection of cream puffs, cakes and ├ęclairs they'll squeak by in December.  Pick: Green Bay

Joe: By the NY Giants theory of lying in the NFC weeds, the Packers would seem to have their opponents right where they want them. Pick: Green Bay

Indianapolis at Kansas City

Aaron: Soon-to-be-fired Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel is going to be handsomely paid for the final two years of the three-year contract he signed prior to the 2012 season.  His career record is 28-53. If this isn't a specific Republican presidential candidate talking point in 2016, I'll be disappointed.  Pick: Indianapolis

Joe: Not that this game is important enough to warrant it, but you know those mayoral wagers where the mayor of Kansas City will send a case of BBQ to the mayor of Indianapolis, who in turn sends to the mayor of Kansas City ... what? Miniature Formula One cars? Parks and Recreation DVDs? Pick: Indianapolis

Buffalo at Miami

Aaron: NOW, it occurs to me that I've been picking the Bills with much more frequency than the guy who actually roots for them.  I'm beginning to think Joe knows something I don't.  Pick: Miami

Joe: Well, great. SKYNET has become self-aware. Pick: Miami

San Diego at NY Jets

Aaron: It's probably not a good sign in the short-term that in the same week third-string QB Greg McElroy is named the starter for the Jets, there are reports that the team will pursue Michael Vick for their quarterback spot in 2013.  Oh, Jets.  Don't ever change.  Pick: San Diego

Joe: I still think we've seen Norv Turner's last win for the Chargers. Pick: NY Jets

Washington at Philadelphia

Aaron: Let's slow down on all the "Washington has TWO good quarterbacks" claptrap, America.  Backup QB Kirk Cousins is the quintessential second-stringer -- unspectacularly competent -- who's coming off a win against Cleveland.  Cleveland.  The Redskins could start Cousins OR a recovering Robert Griffin III this week.  The Eagles are worthy of the same condescending italics.  Pick: Washington

Joe: I've been home for Christmas for 25 hours now, and I've already got family members clamoring for Andy Reid (my brother's namesake, of course) to be the next Bills head coach. Somebody bright-side this for me.  Pick: Washington

Cincinnati at Pittsburgh

Aaron: The Steelers were outcoached two weeks ago against the Chargers and outplayed last week against the Cowboys.  While it's FAR too soon to welcome Pittsburgh's Mike Tomlin into the pantheon of incompetent black head coaches; Art Shell, Dennis Green, Ray Rhodes, Raheem Morris and Herm Edwards are monitoring the situation.  Pick: Pittsburgh

Joe: This Christmas, let's give the Steelers the gift of a January vacation, hmm? Pick: Cincinnati

St. Louis at Tampa Bay

Aaron: The Buccaneers still sport the top-ranked defense against the run AND the worst defense against the pass.  Since the Rams offense still goes through RB Steven Jackson and the Bucs are at home and they're probably still pissed over last week's 41-0 loss to New Orleans and...etc.  Pick: Tampa Bay

Joe: Whereas I think the Bucs have lost it. LOST IT! Scientific finding! Pick: St. Louis

New England at Jacksonville

Aaron: Seems unfair that it's the Patriots who are the only team to receive two byes this season, but after last week's heavyweight fight against the 49ers, I suppose it's defensible. Pick: New England

Joe: Really annoyed that last week's near-comeback against the Niners gave Pats fans the bright side of proof that running up the score is necessary. Even when they lose they win. Pick: New England

Minnesota at Houston

Aaron: Surprised to learn the Vikings (with RB Adrian Peterson) and Texans (with RB Arian Foster) only rank fourth and fifth, respectively, in rushing offense.  OK, so the three teams ahead of them (Washington, San Francisco and Seattle) have quarterbacks who can run, but keep this bit of trivia in your back pocket. Use it to chase off the sports-hating relatives after Christmas dinner.  Pick: Houston

Joe: Once again, we're still not talking enough about Adrian Peterson. I know this because someone somewhere is not talking about him right now. And there's no excuse for that. Pick: Houston

Cleveland at Denver

Aaron: I'm beginning to reconsider my "Broncos have already clinched the division, they're due for a letdown" prognostication strategy.  Pick: Denver

Joe: Watch out, Broncos! Don't want to take a jinx-prone winning streak into the playoffs! Start that goldbricking, fellas. Pick: Denver

Chicago at Arizona

Aaron: With their season teetering on the brink, a loss to the 5-9 Cardinals would undoubtedly be the most "Jay Cutler" moment of Jay Cutler's career.  Chicago

Joe: The Cardinals started the season 4-0, you guys. THIS season! THESE Cardinals! Pick: Chicago

NY Giants at Baltimore

Aaron: Both of these once-great defenses are now borderline abominable.  But, it's the Giants who have some serious health concerns with many of QB Eli Manning's weapons banged-up.  I think it's time for the greater New York/New Jersey area to consider the possibility that Manning's social calendar will be WIDE open for the next nine months.  Available for birthday parties!  Pick: Baltimore

Joe: I'd say it's the Ravens who are slightly more likely to go into the ultimate swoon, but there's no one in the AFC waiting to overtake them. BTW, is Ray Rice still a great running back? I'm not being sarcastic -- I honestly don't know. I haven't heard anyone mention him all season. Pick: NY Giants

San Francisco at Seattle

Aaron: The 49ers can be schizophrenic from week to week, while the Seahawks' earlier loss in San Francisco was on a Thursday night as both teams sleepwalked for three hours. It's not exactly an airtight rationale for picking Seattle, but one of these teams has gotta win, I suppose.  Pick: Seattle

Joe: Happy that the Seahawks were able to get those self-esteem-boosting 50-plus-point outings against the Cardinals and Bills in time to be wildly overconfident against the 49ers. Pick: San Francisco

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