Handicapping NFL Week 16: Picks of the Week


Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!  This Holiday Season has come very fast, so fast it has thrown off my football senses. It’s either that or my disenfranchisement with the Bears.   I didn’t even know that all of the games (except Bears and Monday game) were all on today (Saturday).  I had to reschedule my Saturday morning for football planning.  I also have been “intrigued” with recent college basketball play.  I have to give props to my brother for a recent college basketball pool -he went 19-6.  Now that is a pretty solid ratio; I need to pull one of those off in the NFL.  It’s a little trickier, but we’ll see what we can do.  It was nice to get on the winning side of things last week with a 3-2.

Summary of last week: I felt really good about my Pick 3 last week.  I felt confident that NE was going to end the Denver streak.  I also felt strongly that although the Saints aren’t as good on the road, playing in a dome versus a poor Minnesota team would be an easy win.  I don’t know what to say about the Packers.  It was nice to see them lose, but I got knocked out of a huge survival pool with that one, so I was disappointed.  However, erasing the possibility of dealing with an undefeated Packers season the rest of my life helped ease the pain.  San Diego is on their late surge so I liked them as an upset special last week, even against Baltimore.  The Bears are…..no comment.

PICK 3:

Pittsburgh -10 vs Rams -the loss of Big Ben will likely scare some people away from this spread.  But after a tough loss last week to the 49ers on the road, Pittsburgh will not let up this week, especially as they try to keep pace with Baltimore.   One thing to watch:  this line jumped 2-2.5 points in a day.  A lot of money just went the RAMS way to move that line so much.  Is it the Big Ben factor or is something else going on?

Baltimore -11 vs Cleveland - I could use the same argument as above.  The last time these two teams met, Baltimore won 24-10 in Cleveland.  Baltimore’s Defense will play at their old level after last week’s embarrassment in San Diego.  Let us not forget, Cleveland is not San Diego, this is in Baltimore, and Pittsburgh has a cupcake today.  Baltimore needs to win and they will….soundly.

Carolina -7.5 vs Tampa - I like the direction Carolina is going and I can’t believe they’ve only won 5 games this year.  This is a team that is building it’s momentum for next year.  I like a solid win vs. a young Bucs team that has packed it in already.

UPSET SPECIAL

San Diego +1 vs Detroit – I can’t believe I’m going to do it again, but I’m rolling the dice with the Chargers.  You just have to like the way the Chargers are playing.  It’ll be a tough one – a loud lively Detroit.  However, I just don’t like Detroit against teams that are playing well, even if they are at home.

The Beloved

Packers -11 vs. Bears - This is still a tough one to pick, believe it or not. There are so many variables: McCown, Bell, Bears playing Packers tough, Packers O-Line, Briggs.  I’m hoping for the Christmas miracle, but don’t think it’s coming.  The Packers know it is important to be playing well going into the playoffs, and for them, it starts over on Christmas Night.  Sigh.

SEASON TOTALS: PICK 3 (17-22-1); UPSET SPECIAL (6-6); BELOVED (5-7); TOTAL: (28-35-1)