Sunday, September 27, 2009

You Betcha!

Welcome back for another Sunday morning installment of You Betcha!, the weekly post in which Sarah Palin picks the winners of NFL games against the spread. Um, except that proved to be too exhausting of an endeavor, so this week it's just little old me making the picks. Endure.

Last Week:

I was an outstanding 12-4 against the spread, 2-1 on my mortal locks, and my net profit on the six bets I placed last week was $12.04 (disappointing given how well I did on my picks overall).

Overall Totals:

Against the spread: 12-4
Mortal Locks: 2-1
Net profit: $12.04

Week 3 (road teams are always listed first):

1) Tennessee (+3) vs. NY Jets (-3)

The Titans are a surprising 0-2 while the Jets are a shocking 2-0. While I'm not sold on the Jets rookie QB Mark Sanchez, I'm all-in on that impressive defense. This should be a close, low-scoring game, but I like the Jets at home to go 3-0.

2) Jacksonville (+4) vs. Houston (-4)

Houston scored a much-needed upset victory last week against the aforementioned Titans. In that game, they couldn't stop Chris Johnson. This week they get Maurice Jones-Drew and likely won't be able to contain him either. Still, the Jaguars have all kinds of their own problems on defense and Houston's offense should get both the running and passing games going. At home, take the Texans in what should be high-scoring game.

3) Kansas City (+8) vs. Philadelphia (-8)

Philly is expected to be without their top QB, their top RB, their top WR...and they still are 8-point favorites. Is KC really that bad? Yes. Yes they are. This may not be the blowout people are expecting, and eight points is an awful tempting line to pick the dog against, but I can't do it. After being demolished by the Saints last week, the Eagles will come roaring back for a win.

4) Cleveland (+14) vs. Baltimore (-14)

This is a HUGE spread this early on the season, but that's an accurate reflection of how well-balanced the Ravens have played and how awesome inept the Browns have been. As wide as the gulf between these two teams may be, two touchdowns is too big of a spread to not pick the dog. The Browns are going to take lots of chances early on, and I predict "some" success. Without Jamal Lewis to weigh them down (out with an injury), they're going to have some faster, more versatile backs in the game. Look for a long scoring play or two to keep the spread in play. I'm taking Cleveland.

5) NY Giants (-7) vs. Tampa Bay (+7)

Tampa Bay will fall to 0-3 after a loss to the Giants, but they're just not that bad of a team. They will win some games, possibly even 7 or 8 when the season is finally over, but this week their hands are full. I expect Byron Leftwich to be sacked at least five times and for the Giants to easily cruise to victory. They'll cover the seven points easily, even on the road.

6) Washington (-6.5) vs. Detroit (+6.5)

Is this the week Detroit breaks their 19-game losing streak? They're home against a mediocre Washington team expected to be without their top RB, and Detroit is coming off a respectable loss to Vikings. So, is it? Nope. Detroit will lose. Again. But can they keep it within a touchdown at home? I think so...since Washington is ONLY averaging 13 points a game thus far. Take Detroit with the points.

7) Green Bay (-7) vs. St. Louis (+7)

This is a mortal lock. The Packers had a tough loss to the Bengals last week and that's kept this spread in super value territory. The Packers have flaws, but scoring isn't one of them. I expect this to be a major blowout...perhaps by 20 or 30 points. The Pack only need to cover by 7 points, so bet the house.

8) San Francisco (+7) vs. Minnesota (-7)

This is an intriguing matchup against two upstart teams with two stud RBs. I have no good feel for how this is going to play out, but when in doubt...take the home team with the best player in the league. Adrian Peterson should have success (as usual) and a TD isn't a huge spread to overcome. I'll take the Vikings.

9) Atlanta (+4.5) vs. New England (-4.5)

Now here's a tricky game to predict. I love the Falcons this year, and the Patriots are clearly working through some issues on both sides of the ball, but only a five-point favorite at home coming off a loss? Something tells me Bill Belichick is going to have these guys ready. Expect Matt Ryan to see lots and lots of pressure all day...and that pressure will work. I'll take the Pats.

10) Chicago (-3) vs. Seattle (+3)

And the second mortal lock of the week goes to the Bears. Seattle is a tough place to play, but Matt Hasselbeck is likely out for the game and that will slow their offense considerably. Meanwhile, Jay Cutler is finally developing a rapport with some of his talented, young WRs. I expect Chicago to win easily.

11) New Orleans (-6.5) vs. Buffalo (+6.5)

Probably the marquee matchup of the week, and one expected to be a high-scoring contest, the spread is closer than expected due to some key injuries for the Saints (Lance Moore and Mike Bell are out). I like what Buffalo is doing this year, and they'll be even better by the end of the season, but their secondary is banged up and that's not what you need when facing Drew Brees. Brees has eight TDs in the first two games...and he'll add at least 3 more today. The Saints will cover on the road.

12) Miami (+6) vs. San Diego (-6)

That wildcat offense sure did look effective against Indy last Monday night. And the Chargers sure do seem like a shadow of last season's team. Even so, at home, I gotta take the Chargers to cover six points. They'll be without LT yet again, but Darren Sproles proved he's up to the task. Also, the Charger run defense is a thousand times better than the Colts. Take the Chargers with confidence here.

13) Pittsburgh (-4) vs. Cincinnati (+4)

The Bengals shocked Green Bay last week. Can they do it against the defending Super Bowl champions? The answer...YES! I'm not a believer, but the Bengals have a sturdy running game with Cedric Benson. It gives Carson Palmer just enough time to look downfield for his trio of game-breaking WRs. I have zero confidence in the Bengals, but I do have a feeling this is going to be a fun, high-scoring game in which they keep it close enough to cover the spread.

14) Denver (-2) vs. Oakland (+2)

The Raiders are suddenly getting a lot of respect. It's not deserved. True, they are better than they've been in a long time, and yes, do have enough talent to expect things to get better, but they also have JaMarcus Russell at QB and he is showing almost nothing at the position. These Broncos are still a mess in the passing game, but they can still run...and the Raiders, while improved, still can't stop it. Expect Denver to cover easily.

15) Indianapolis (+2.5) vs. Arizona (-2.5)

A rare matchup between QB legends Peyton Manning and Kurt Warner. The Cardinals at home are a small favorite, and based on how shaky Indy's 2-0 start has been, that sounds about right. However, after last week's iffy performance on Monday night, I expect the Colts to come back with a much stronger showing in front of a national audience. This could very well come down to a last-second FG, but I expect the Colts to be on the winning end of that kick.

16) Carolina (+8.5) vs. Dallas (-8.5)

The Panther are going to be hit and miss all season. They have a great WR in Steve Smith, a great tandem of RBs, and they have a QB who sometimes does a decent impression of an NFL QB. You never know which team is going to show up. Dallas, while I still love'em and have high expectations for them on the season, does not matchup well with the Panthers. Nobody can even hope to run with Steve Smith...meaning they'll have to leave the middle of the field soft for that Carolina running game. I think Dallas will put this one out, but I expect a very close one here. Take the 8.5 points being given to Carolina.

Mortal Lock #1: Green Bay (-7)
Mortal Lock #2: Denver (-2)
Mortal Lock #3: Chicago (-3)

I've got $80 wagered this week, and here's what they are:

1) Green Bay (-7): $30 to win $27.27
2) Chicago (-3): $20 to win $19.05
3) Denver (-2): $25 to win $22.73
4) A five-game parlay picking Green Bay, Chicago, Denver, San Diego and the Giants: $5 to win $127.61

UPDATE: Hot damn, what a day. I've gone 11-3 in these early games, won all 3 of my mortal locks, and I won all 4 of my bets...including a massive 5-game parlay which turned $5 into $127. Hey, I might be pretty good at this.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home