Recommended lines: 1/5
Solid Leans: 3/6
Pretty terrible week to say the least, but lets go further and break it down.
Eagles @ Bucs +1, result – Eagles 31, Bucs 20:
The Bucs offense certainly did their part in this game, putting up 20 points and over 350 yards. But of course, the glaring hole blasted in my prediction was the performance of Nick Foles and LeSean McCoy. The Bucs defense was completely unable to get a handle on either player, despite getting good pressure on Foles most of the day; 1 sack, 8 qb hits, 8 pressures on just 34 pass plays. So despite facing disruption on half his drop backs, Foles was able to have a phenomenal passing day against a pretty good defense, on the road no less. It goes without saying that the Eagles now have the kind of QB controversy you want to have, although Vick’s hamstring should allow Foles to continue playing for the next couple weeks.
Packers @ Ravens +3, result – Packers 19, Ravens 17:
The only line I managed to cover, and the Ravens were a 4th and 21 away from failing to do so. I can’t begin to describe how shocked I am at the Ravens inconsistency in moving the ball against a poor defense without its best player. There was no running room whatsoever, and despite his numbers, Joe Flacco was pretty awful outside of 4 big plays where alot of yardage was generated after the catch. If Flacco’s contract is the sole reason the Ravens traded away Anquan Boldin, it’s pretty clear his desire for money is hurting the offense; not a single Ravens player had more than 4 catches, and they ran for a paltry 47 yards. Pretty hilarious that they managed to cover the line, because they probably shouldn’t have when you consider the Packers lost Randall Cobb and James Jones to injuries.
Lions @ Browns Under 44, result 48:
I can’t speak much on this game as I haven’t watched it yet. Judging from the box score, it seems like the ratio of touchdowns to field goals (6 to 2) was fairly lucky. Neither team passed the ball very well (43 pass attempts each, 5.7 y/a for Stafford, 6.8 y/a for Weeden) yet they threw for all 6 touchdowns. If this game were to be played multiple times over, I think you would see more field goals than touchdowns, so I think I got slightly unlucky here.
Rams @ Texans -7.5, result – Rams 38, Texans 13:
Sigh…where do I even begin with this game…Based on the score you might think my prediction of a stifling Texans defense was a joke, yet the Rams racked up just 216 yards for the entire game! Paying attention to the game from the box score at half, it simply did not make any sense; Arian Foster had almost 100 yards on only 10 carries, Schaub was 9/11 for 100+ yards with no turnovers, and the Rams had barely over 100 yards, yet they were ahead 17-6? But of course, further analysis revealed that the Rams had a 40 yard pass interference call in their favor on their first drive, and DeAndre Hopkins coughed up a fumble not too long afterwards. Sam Bradford was allowed to dink and dunk his way to victory, throwing 3 touchdowns on just 16 attempts with numerous short fields. Two return touchdowns by the Rams in the 2nd half (one when they were kicking off? wtf?!) made this a laugher. I’m not going to attempt to defend my line prediction, but the fact that this wasn’t at least a close game seems beyond ridiculous.
Cardinals +10.5 @ 49’ers, result – 49’ers 32, Cardinals 20:
There’s only one thing to say here; man was I WRONG about Vernon Davis. 8 catches for 180 yards and 2 touchdowns. Boldin was next best with 3 catches, and then no one else had more than 1. Despite Vernon’s huge day, the Cardinals were still in decent shape starting the 4th quarter, down just 20 to 22. However they were unable to score again, and the 49’ers just managed to cover. I haven’t watched the game yet so I can’t make an assessment of my prediction, but considering the final score was right around the line, it probably wasn’t a good look.
Titans @ Seahawks Under 40.5, result – 33: Seems like this is the only game this week that went the way I expected.
Bengals -6 @ Bills, result – OT Bengals 27, Bills 24: Thaddeus Lewis looked pretty good. But even so, in the future, I’m not sure I can resist picking against undrafted free agent QB’s thrown into the fire.
Saints +1 @ Patriots Under 50.5, result – Patriots 30, Saints 27: What a nail biter this was. If the Saints offense could have gotten just one first down on their final two drives, both these lines would have barely covered. In the end though, kudos to Brady who adds another 4th quarter comeback to his record.
Colts @ Chargers +1, result – Chargers 19, Colts 9: The final score is actually a bit misleading. The Colts certainly didn’t have a good offensive day, but key drops by the receivers made this one look not as close as it was. A one possession game most of the way, but it seems I was right to take the Chargers points at home.
All in all, only 2 out of my 11 picks went exactly the way I thought they would. 4 were reasonably close to coming out in my favor, and then the rest? I think the only appropriate description is LOL. But that’s how it goes trying to make picks in the NFL, you are guaranteed to lose some weeks. Hopefully this week will be better, I’ll have something up as soon as injury reports are out.