Friday, December 16, 2011

Place Your Bets Week 15

Well, I'm coming off my best week of the year with a 4-1 mark and solid performance on the cross talk picks I gave out live on the air last week. Opposite schedules today made it impossible for the live show so you have the written version this week! Let's see if I can get to 5-0 this week!

Cincinnati @ St. Louis +6
St. Louis only getting less then a TD vs a team who is still in the playoff hunt...although dropping fast, this is one the Bengals have to win or they can put a fork in their playoff hopes. If they lose this they have no business in the playoffs anyway! The Rams are dreadful and may be starting Kellen Clemens who was signed off waivers 2 weeks ago, and is on his third team of 2011. T.J. Yates beat him out for the Houston job when it became available. John Beck beat him out as second string in DC in training camp...yep he is bad. Cinci gets it going again this week. Take the Bengals give the points.

New England @ Denver +6.5
Its December and we have two teams that are leading their division, and the home team is a 6.5 pt dog? When has this ever happened? That said, it isn't enough! I am a Tebow fan, don't get me wrong. I love a leader and a winner. But these guys cannot afford to fall behind the Patriots. So the truth of the matter is, will the Broncos be able to score as much as the Pats? Unfortunately not. This is not a game they can win by kicking field goals. This is also not Minnesota they are playing against. Although the Patriots defense is abysmal, look at how they made Rex Grossman look like a Pro-bowler last week, aside from his two normal turnovers at the worst possible times, BUT, the Broncos can't score at will and Belicheck will be ready with a scheme of some sort. I like the Pats to win by a TD or more.

San Francisco vs. Pittsburgh EVEN
The Niners are a nice story. But let's face it, when the lights have shined the brightest, and against playoff caliber teams, they have lost. Thanksgiving night vs the Ravens and early in the year vs. Dallas both losses. Last week on the road in the division to Arizona, loss. Only two signature wins both late game heroic wins at Detroit and vs the Giants. The other 8 wins are all against teams that are likely not playoff teams, or are dreadful teams who will be picking in the top 6 or 8 picks in the draft. Pittsburgh has not played well on the road, but has only lost to two teams, both of which have clinched playoff berths (Houston and Baltimore twice). The Steelers also have played a fairly soft schedule with only one signature win over New England. So it is a battle of two teams who are over-rated. The game is at SF, but Pittsburgh has December playoff experience on its side. Charlie Batch will be a drop off if he plays, but he has been in the Steelers system for a long time. I like the Steelers because of their experience in December and January. Plus they have won 8 of 9 as opposed to San Fran who has lost2 of the last 3. Take the Steelers.

Arizona vs Cleveland +7

Cleveland last played on Thursday night a week ago. They have played almost everyone tight. Arizona is set up for a trap game here coming off of the big win vs the 49ers last week. Seneca Wallace appears to be starting which is an advantage for the Browns as he knows the system but there is no tape on him this year. He brings a few additional elements with his legs that Colt McCoy does not. This change in style will help the Browns. The spread is a TD, I believe the Cardinals let the Browns hang around, and they cover that number and probably win outright! Take the Browns and the points!

PICK OF THE WEEK
New Orleans @ Minnesota +7

This is a big spread for a home dog. However, Christian Ponder has struggled. AP will be back, but that is no big deal as that is what most teams expect when they plan for the Vikings. He will help for sure, but just like the Broncos, the Vikings don't have enough offense to keep up with the Saints. The Saints are also going up against a Vikings secondary that is ravished by injury. It should be a great day for Brees owner, and for you if you take the Saints to roll the Vikings...