Handicapping NFL Week 17: Picks of the Week


Two weeks in the positive helps, another 3-2 week.  I’ve been waiting awhile for that 4-1 or 5-0 week, but with the randomness of the NFL, those weeks are tough to come by. It was tough typing “NFL Week 17” in the subject line this week. Wherein I love the playoffs, I’m going to miss all of the enjoyment that comes along with a full slate of games: the games themselves, fantasy, confidence pools, survival pools, and all of the other crazy games that are associated with the NFL.  The Bears have really put me in a football slump with this late-season crash.  I’ve found myself looking at the spread of the Jacksonville/Indy game for excitement for crying out loud.  Well, I’ve had fun again, and although I wasn’t as good this year as last, I’m looking forward to the playoffs and next year as well.  Look for my numbers for the past two years coming up in a playoff post.

SUMMARY of LAST WEEK:  Outside of the blog, other picks I made did very well, I just put down the wrong 3 last week.  Well, not the wrong 3, I went 2-1, but I could’ve went 3-0.  I really felt that both Pitt and Baltimore were going to cover.  Baltimore let me down because they let Josh Cribbs take one to the house.  Otherwise, they would’ve covered against a dismal Browns team.  Carolina blew the Succaneers out and that game was over by the end of the first quarter.  I love games like that; you can write a W down on your sheet right away.  I have to apologize for my Chargers Upset Special pick.  My goodness, I don’t think that I was that off since the begining of the season when I wrote that Buffalo wasn’t an offensive juggernaut and they put up like 45 points.  San Diego reinforced why I hate picking them.  The Bears game was sadly an easy pick.  However, the Bears almost came back and covered the spread with their last drive.  Their field goal eased gamblers worries as they lost by 14 allowing the Packers to not only win the game, but cover the spread as well. Oh well, on to the final week:


Falcons -10 vs. Bucs – as evidenced versus the Panthers last week, the Succaneers are already on “break.”  Although I don’t think that every team that is playing for a playoff spot is going to win, it will be the case in this game.  The Falcons would prefer to have that 5 seed and play the Giants or Dallas in the playoffs rather than go to New Orleans to get waxed again.  Therefore, they will want to take care of the Bucs early and kill any thoughts of “spoiler” Bucs may have.  A quick lead will make the Bucs pack up by halftime.  I like giving 10 on this one.

Ravens -1.5 vs. Cincinnati – I know the Ravens aren’t good on the road.  I picked them to win the Superbowl and have followed them closely throughout the year.  Baltimore will not lose to Cincinnati.  Repeat after me:  Baltimore will not lose to Cincinnati.  This is the difference between a possible #1 seed and #5 seed.  Too important.  I know Cinci is playing for their playoff lives (important too) and they had to give tickets away to pack the stadium (kind of sad, isn’t it?), but the Ravens will be ready today. The Ravens simply have to not forget about Rice…please don’t forget about Rice.

Eagles -9 vs Washington – I was just about to type that division games make me more nervous and here I’ve already selected two.  Besides – aren’t all the games Division games this week?  🙂  There’s no avoiding them.  I pick them, you just have to be aware that Division opponents know each other better and therefore games are typically closer than the betting public thinks they will be.  However, remember the Dream Team?  The Eagles were supposed to win the Superbowl this year.  If there was a regular off-season, I think that they would’ve at least been in the playoffs.  Well, these last couple of weeks, we’ve seen the Eagles everyone expected.  They took care of the Cowboys, Jets, and Dolphins.  Today, their last game, they will send a message to their fans and NFL that they will be who they were expected to be next year.  The Redskins will get pounded today in Philly.

Upset Special of the Week:

Carolina -7 vs New Orleans – I really wanted to get this game when it was at 8.5, but others like me saw this game and already started putting their $ on Carolina.  There are a lot of unknowns in this game – i.e. will Payton keep Brees in to compete for record?  Will the Saints “concede” the #2 seed to the 49ers thinking that they won’t lose to the Rams?  If they concede, will they sit starters?  Regardless, as we saw last week, the Panthers don’t care about not being in the playoffs, they are still bringing it under their QB Leader, Newton.  This will be a fun game, and if at any point New Orleans sits people, it will be an easy cover.


Bears +1.5 @ Minnesota – man, what this game could’ve been for our Bears.  This could’ve been a really exciting weekend for us (last weekend could’ve been too……if ifs and buts were candies and nuts, we’d all have a Merry Christmas).  The Bears generally don’t do well in the Metrodome, but neither has Minnesota this year, so that trend goes right out the window.  Gerhart is not Peterson.  The Bears Defense will shut down Minnesota today and their offense will do enough to win this one.  I’m interested to watch McCown fight for a #2 job today.

SEASON TOTALS: PICK 3 (19-23-1); UPSET SPECIAL (6-7); BELOVED (6-7); TOTAL: (31-37-1)