Archive for November, 2012


19 Nov


NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS ROLLING- After a rocky start that included suspect losses to the Ravens and the Cardinals, the Patriots have quietly rebounded with four straight wins. At 7-3, and with three games up on their next closest division rival, the Patriots have essentially secured the division and a trip to the playoffs with 6 weeks to go in the season. I am not saying things are perfect in New England, especially given their atrocious secondary, but they have already have a solid shot at securing a first round bye in the playoffs and the way they are playing also have a solid shot at a very deep playoff run. They play Houston in a couple weeks, and if they can beat them they are the team to beat in the NFL.

RG3’s CAREER DAY- While I am still not a fan, having long given my rookie of the year vote to Andrew Luck, RG3’s 4 touchdown romp at home against the Eagles deserves some credit. Not only did RG decisively lead his team to victory against a divisional opponent (yes, even if that opponent happens to be the downtrodden Eagles), but he did so with some of the most perfectly executed plays madeby anyone this season. I will admit, I have come down hard on RG for his “mobile” play which often leads to immobile results, but he made everyone take notice of what fantastic in the pocket potential he has with those two 60 yard throws for touchdowns he had in this one. For RG3’s sake lets hope he keeps it going from the pocket.

JAGS HANG TOUGH- At 1-8, the Jacksonville Jaguars do not have much to play for at this point in this season. In fact, at this point last year bad teams actually had something to look forward to by playing bad what with the Andrew Luck sweepstakes just a couple of months away. This year however, don’t count the Jags as one of those teams looking to lay down as they went on the road and took it to the league’s best team the Houston Texans. In fact, not only did they lose their starting quarterback, but the team seemed to rally around the loss, took on a new persona, and lead by Chad Henne and his 4 TDs gave the Texans all they had and actually led for much of this game. While they did not win, the Jags can at least look back on one game this season with some pride.


MATTY ICE’S CREDIBILITY- For the second week in a row, despite all their self-imposed hype, the Falcons came in a dud performance in a game they should have won. The only difference, is that this week the Falcons were lucky enough to escape with a win despite the brutal day from their leader Matty (no-)Ice. Just how lucky were the Falcons? Well, the Falcons were so lucky that they were the only team in 40+ years to win a game in which their quarterback threw 5 picks and no TDs. And while Ryan did throw for just over 300 yards, this sort of horrible showing overall against an inferior team is precisely the reason no one with any football sense gives any praise to the Falcons. Sorry Roddy White.

CLEAVLAND STEAMMED- Really, I could have put either of the participants in this contest in this low-lights section, but given that Dallas did just enough to win I will leave them off the list for now. The Browns however, absolutely belong on this list as they blew a 13 point half-time lead against a Cowboys team that has perhaps the worst homefield advantage in all of sports and an offensive line so porous that they make the average spaghetti strainer look good. This game was right there for the Browns, but as they have done all season, they gave away a game they could have easily won with miscues and bad penalties. The good news for the Browns is that unlike other bad teams in the league, they actually play very hard for much of the game and their first round pick Trent Richardson looks fantastic. If this team ever finds a coach and a quarterback, look out AFC North.

PITTSBURGH SNOREFEST- ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ….huh? what? There was a game being play in Pittsburgh for real? Wow, with the way this game went you sure could have fooled me. While I love a defensive slug-fest as much as the next person, this game was not that. This game was a game played by two totally inept offenses that for an evening made the Kansas City Chiefs look good. In their defense, even though they were at home, the Steelers are a team totally infested with the injury bug on both sides of the ball and are a team barely holding it together. Anytime Byron Leftwich is your starting QB your team should get a pass. The Ravens however, have no excuse, because even though they have lost LeDarrius Webb and Ray Lewis, defense and special teams are not their problem. Once again the self-proclaimed “elite” Joe Flacco looked totally ordinary and ran some of the most stagnant ball played this season against a depleted defense Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees would have totally torn to shreads. Newsflash Flacco: YOU ARE NOT ELITE.

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13 Nov


THE COWBOYS BIG WIN?-I cannot give the Cowboys flack when they lose, if I did not also give them their due credit when they win. The Cowboys came into this one, like the Eagles, needing a big win to save their season. Indeed at 3-5, and facing the prospect of going 3-6, the Cowboys could essentially write off the rest of the season and start cleaning house now if they lost another one. But alas, Tony Romo and Jason Garrett saved themselves for another week, as the desperate Cowboys were able to vanquish their division rivals in convincing fashion with big plays in all three phases of the game (offense, defense and special teams). Michael Vick might get the assist in this game, going out with a totally inevitable concussion on another one of his “scrambles”, but given the way he’s played this season and the signficance of his injury is greatly minimized.

At 4-5 the prospects of Dallas making it to the post-season show are still slim, but at least they won a critical game they had too, and are within striking distance of the Giants.

PITTSBURGH’S PULLS IT OUT UGLY- You might be wondering why I decided to give kudos to a Steelers’ team that trailed KC, a team that never held a lead at any point in the season coming into this one. it is a fair question, but it is the same reason I will give the Patriots’ respect in their close call against Buffalo, good teams find ways to win ball games they should no matter what.  In this game, the Steelers were in the midst of tight game, when their best player and leader was taken out of the game with an awful looking shoulder injury. Down their quarterback and on the scoreboard the vast majority of teams, often concede defeat by letting their level of play fall dramatically, however, as I have said before truly good teams find a  win. In this contest, the Steelers relied on perrential question mark Byron Leftwich to keep them in the game, and capitalized on the (inevitable) bad play by Matt Cassell to win an important game at home and keep their playoff hopes alive.

THOSE RELENTLESS RAMS- Ordinarily I do not praise teams that do not win, but the Rams not losing to a much superior San Francisco team on the road is worthy of some praise. The Rams played refuse to lose ball for 60 minutes and then, played another 15 minutes of refuse to lose ball in overtime. Yes, there were some missed field goals, but the suspect calls by Jeff Fischer, most notably not calling time out on a crucial field goal attempting thus electing to have his kicker kick from 58 yards instead of 53, should more than negate San Fran’s miscues. While this team probably won’t make it to the playoffs this year, there is plenty to like in St. Louis’ future. If Daryl Richardson fills the void that will be left by Stephen Jackson, and the team can find a star-calibre receiver to line-up opposite Danny Amendola things should be good soon in Rams-Land.


THE GIANTS LOSE ANOTHER STINKER- The Giants have for the second week in a row, dropped a game they could have and should have won. Last week they allowed Pittsburgh to run all over them and while losing to the Steelers is nothing to be ashamed of, losing to the Bengals is. The Bengals despite their impressive start have had some big loss in their last 4 games coming into this one.  The Giants however, to the shegrin of thier fans, would not let that stand and absolutely gifted the Bengals a win Cinncinatti had no business winning. In the process, the Giants allowed the winner of the Cowboys-Eagles game back in the race for the NFC East crown with the gap now shrunk to 1.5 games. Now I am in no way saying the Giants won’t still win the division and make a deep post-season run, but the Giants should not be letting their foot off the throats of anyone.

THE RAVENS CLASSY WIN- While winning big is certainly a part of football, there is such a thing as sportsmanship right? Well, over the last couple years I am not so sure anymore. Teams of late have tried to flout conventions on sportsmanship with examples ranging from running up the score, blitzing the other team in victory formation, players laughing at the injuries of their peers etc. In this one, the Ravens tried to further add credence to the notion that sportsmanship is a relic of the past by humiliating their opponents the Raiders, with a fake field goal that was run in for a touchdown. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not against sticking it to your opponent, but the Ravens need to take a long hard look at themselves before they stick it to anyone. They missed a chance to go to the Superbowl last year by shooting themselves in the foot, and aside from the year they won the title, have looked pretty dissapointing the last fews seasons.

FLOGGING THE FALCONS- I knew it. I knew it all along. Not only were the Falcons bound to lose a game, but this is a team that is chronically inflicted with losing big games it is supposed to win. They are like a much more successful version of my beloved Dallas Cowboys. While the Falcons dropping games they should be winning is nothing new, this loss is of particular significance given the way in which Roddy White and some of the other Falcons were patting themselves on the back and declaring this game over before it begun. The result? The Falcons allowed a division opponent, who were all but counted out of the playoffs, to beat them amid all of their big talk and pre-game showboating. While I love a bravado as much as the next person, unless you have at least have a title, you should be keeping your mouth shut. Period.  The Falcons should absolutely take this loss as a lesson hard learned, and next time, not count their falcons before they hatch.

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06 Nov


CHICAGO BEARS DEFENSE- I know fans of the ’85 Bears go on and on about how great this team was, but I really want to know how they are better than this 2012 Bears squad, at least on Defense. This defense has been absolutely suffocating, because not only do they shut teams down from scoring points, it is them who are the ones scoring points.  And while they are tremendous as a unit, the biggest playmaker of them all has to be Charles Tillman. Not only has Peanut Tillman got the interceptions (and returned two of them for touchdowns), but in the Titans game alone he had four forced fumbles to bring is league leading total up to 7 though 8 games(which is astounding for a defensive back). This Bears team actually reminds me of the Ravens team that won the Superbowl in the early 2000s because of the way they their defense sets up big plays and seems to score points at will. The only difference between these two squads is that this Bears team has tremendous special teams play (led by the best return man in the game in Devin Hester) and a half-way decent offense (sorry Trent Dilfer). I know it has only been 8 games but if things keep going like this, the only team mutli-dimentional enough to stop them from going to the Superbowl is maybe the Giants.

COLTS WIN AGAIN- I cannot say enough good things about Andrew Luck. I know he does amazing things week after week, but until I am satisfied that he is the unanimous choice for rookie of the year I will continue to plead his case. On Sunday, Luck not only did the most important thing he could which was win the game (please take note hype-hogs Cam Newton and RG3), but he did so while setting a rookie passing record against a Miami Dolphins team many had picked to get into the playoffs. Luck has not only managed to rejuvenate the careers of his downward spiraling teammates like Reggie Wayne and Donald Brown, but he has totally rejuvanted the entire franchise and its fanbase. I have said it once and I’ll say it again, if Luck can take his team into the playoffs (or gets them to 9 wins) he should not only win rookie of the year, but MVP as well. Not even Peyton Manning turned this franchise around quick.

DOUG MARTIN’S BIG DAY- I know there was some hype around Doug Martin to start the year, but even the biggest Martin fan could not have imagine that he would have a game like this in his entire career let alone his rookie year. But alas, the league’s new Ray Rice found a way to put up 251 rushing yards and 4TDS on a much improved Raiders defense (or at least it was before this game). And while Carson Palmer and his critical turnovers were helpful in Martin getting the big opportunities he did, Martin has looked solid all season and this game might have been his coming out party. The Bucs spent big money this offseason on revamping their squad, but their best decision to this point has been taking the little man out of Boise state with the 31 pick in the draft. The Bucs play another suspect AFC West team this weekend, so there is a very good chance he’s able to keep the gravy train rolling.


EAGLES GROUNDED- I must have been off my rocker to think the Eagles were going to pull this game out (or at least cover the spread), but of course the Eagles blew the last chance to save their season in epic fashion last night. Not only was Andy Reid absolutely brutal with his playcalling as usual (how does a team that was averaging 7.6 yards per carry pass the ball 41 times in a game???), but also like clockwork Michael Vick turned the ball over at the worst possible instance with that redzone pick-6 that went for 99 yards. If the Eagles could not win a must win game against a 2-5 team with a brutal pass defense in a dome I do not know who they are going to beat for certain this year (although I have a feeling they will still trounce my beloved Cowboys on Sunday). On paper this was the Eagles’ year, but somehow they have carelessly tossed away their last great shot at glory. However, given Reid’ coaching and the way he carelessly tosses challenge flags this should come as no surprise to anyone.

BENGALS BUNGLE ANOTHER ONE- This game was right there for the Bengals. Despite big plays against them, like Trindon Holidays’ 105 yard kickoff return for a touchdown, they Bengals hung in there, made the smart plays when they had to, came back from 17-3 down and were actually up  20-17 against the heavily favoured Broncos at the start of the 4th quarter. However, just as they always do the Bengals found a way to lose, with a combination of bad play calling, terrible defense, unnecessary (albeit suspect) penalties and a back-breaking turnover at the worst possible time via Dalton’s pick by Champ Bailey which set up the final Denver touchdown. The Bengals looked good to start the season, but have lost the last 4 in a row. I am not saying things are over for the Bengals, but in a division that includes the Ravens, they had better pick up the slack quick if they want a shot at one of those wildcards.

WASHINGTON REDSKINS SKINNED AT HOME- Due to the fact that I refuse to address the Cowboys and their issues this week, I will turn my attention elsewhere in the division. And since everyone, else in the division save the Giants is 3-5, finding fault is not hard to do. However, while everyone in this division except for the world champions have underperformed this season, no one takes underperforming more seriously than the Washington Redskins. As disturbing as their on-field performance was in losing to a hapless Panthers team at home, the most egregious thing about the Redskins this week has stemmed for their coach Mike Shanahan. For a change though it is not his playcalling which has people in the Washington area calling for his job, but rather his mouth (And really, if he’s not getting fired for having his concussed franchise quarterback open himself up to taking another brutal hit as a wide receiver he is probably not getting fired for playcalling anytime soon). It takes a lot for an overrated big mouth like Shannahan to get himself into trouble, but when you announce to the world that you are essentially giving up on the season half way in, you kind of open yourself up to getting axed (especially since, you know his terrible play calling kind of had something to do with them being where they are). However, in the spirit of taking buffoonery to the next level, Shanahan flip-flopped and said that he hadn’t actually given up on the season even though he had said he was now simply evaluating players for next year less than 24 hrs ago. Truly, epic coach Shanahan, and by that I of course mean epic fail.

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02 Nov


I have been really busy of late so I was not able to post my San Diego pick, which turned out to be right. Sorry to my loyal readers (and fellow gamblers).

Bet details for ticket number  27317****-*:

Bet Type: Spread (or run line)
Bet Status: Win  
Risk/To Win Amount: 32.00 / 33.92 (CAD)
Date Accepted: 1-November-2012
Time Accepted: 5:29:17 PM (Pacific)
Amount Paid: 65.92
Sport/Period:NFL American Football / Game
Teams: Kansas City Chiefs vs San Diego Chargers
Game Date 1-November-2012
Bet Line: San Diego Chargers -7.5   2.060




While I am still quite busy, but I will post the remaining picks, but without my usual commentary. Good luck to all and please be responsible.



BENGALS (+4) over Broncos

COLTS (+1) over Dolphins


Cowboys (+4) over Falcons (look there is absolutely no reason to take the Cowboys, due to Murray being out and Romo being Romo. However, Dallas usually plays well against good teams in November, they are coming off a tough loss against the Giants, and for whatever reason they seem to play more competitively outside of Jerry world. This is the season for the Cowboys, plus they have had luck against undefeated “good teams” in the past like the Colts who were 13-0 won season, beating the Saints they won the Superbowl, beating the Giants twice the time they won the Superbowl, so Dallas does have somewhat of a track record here. Plus you are getting points, the Falcons have looked shaky in some of their wins and Dallas’ defense is solid. So for all these reasons take a risk and take the Cowboys).


RAIDERS (-1) over Tampa Bay Bucs


Eagles (+3) over Saints ( I know, I know, I absolutely rip the Eagles on a weekly basis and did so even winning and pulling out those miracle wins, but this game is Michael Vick and Andy Reid’s career maintaining game. If the Eagles don’t make the playoffs, and they won’t if they lose this one, Reid is gone, and if Michael Vick has another terrible game he might be benched and it could signal the last of his tenure in Philly at season’s end, which of course means no more fat paydays!!) The Saints are a little overrated even though they are playing at home. So be smart, take the points, and hope Reid can win one for himself.

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