A Fool And His Money, Back Once Again

With the NFL kicking off, it’s time for another fruitless season of picking with the spread in mind — and losing about $20-$50 or more a week while doing so. I will still pick the Broncos’ games, even though it’s tempting bad luck. Home teams in caps.

(Yes, I’ll bet on Eli. Hell, he lands a pretty wife, wins the Super Bowl, deserves a chance with my wallet.)

GIANTS (-3.5) over Redskins – Growing pains for the Zorn Star’s new offense on the road to open the season.

49ERS (+2.5) over Cardinals – When it comes to NFC Worst games not involving the Seahawks, bet the home team. There is not enough of a difference between Arizona and San Francisco to believe a favorite will cover.

BILLS (+1) over Seahawks – I’ve been burned too many times on Seattle traveling east of St. Louis to play a game. It never works.

Bengals (-1) over RAVENS – Rookie QB from I-AA school starting for Baltimore. Pass

Cowboys (-5.5) over BROWNS – I see a shootout along the lines of the Browns’ game with the Bengals last year. Lots of points, Dallas wins by a touchdown.

Lions (-3) over FALCONS – See Bengals over Ravens, except this rookie QB is from the ACC.

Bears (+9.5) over COLTS – Not to win, mind you, just to cover. I suspect some fits and starts with Indy thanks to offensive line injuries, and that Kyle Orton will not suck as much as we expect.

Jaguars (-3) over TITANS – I want to see Tennessee produce points before I decide to favor them again this year.

PATRIOTS (-16.5) over Chiefs – Trade away your best pass rusher and you’ve still got Brodie Croyle as your QB. Interesting way to go if you’re Carl Petersen.

SAINTS (-3) over Buccaneers – Always home team on this one.

DOLPHINS (+3) over Jets – Chad Pennington’s Vengeance Tour begins with the Fins smacking Favraro around a bit.

EAGLES (-7.5) over Rams – Team from the best division in football (or at least the NFC) against the barrel-scrapers in the league’s worst division. Easy call.

Texans (+6.5) over STEELERS – Pitt wins by 3 or 4 points, not a full TD. Low scoring game thanks to defense on both sides.

CHARGERS (-9) over Panthers – No Steve Smith, no offense, no chance. Sorry.

Broncos (-3) over RAIDERS – Our lack of a defensive presence against Oakland’s lack of a real O-line. This will be ugly; bet on the more talented and experienced QB.

PACKERS (-2.5) over Vikings – Remember, Tavaris Jackson is the QB and this is a road game. The frozen tundra isn’t frozen yet and isn’t what it used to be, but Green Bay has a better aggregate of offensive talent, Adrian Peterson notwithstanding.


5 Responses

  1. Huh, the line on Chiefs-Pats was only +15.5 when I looked this afternoon.

    But still, as a sports fan I find it extremely ridiculous, regardless of past history, when any NFL team is favored by more than two touchdowns over any other NFL team. If it was anybody other than the Chiefs I would probably take the points. But even at full strength KC just doesn’t have the talent on the roster to stay in that one, especially early in the season when defenses are generally ahead of offenses.

  2. While I was looking up the odds, that game kept vacillating between 16.5 and off the board.

    I honestly think that’s for a reason. I expect individual performers on the Chiefs like Tony Gonzalez and Dwayne Bowe to put up some good numbers, but not in the first couple of weeks — and they’re certainly not going to win more than 5 games this year.

  3. I’m going with the “conventional” wisdom of a Giants letdown, too. With Osi out for the season, that pass rush got a little less fearsome, and Jason Campbell has another year of maturity under his belt. You can’t overlook Santana Moss or Antwaan Randle El, either.

    Yes, Eli had four great games in a row to close out 2007, but I think he’s back to his typical “Rex Grossman with a better pedigree” form to start us off in 2008. I could be wrong, but only Eli can convince me of that.

  4. Addendum: Way to make me look like an idiot, NFL! The Giants defense roamed free behind the LOS, Washington receivers were basically non-factors, and Jason Campbell managed the clock like a raw rookie.

    (But thank you for the 100+ rushing yards, Brandon Jacobs…)

  5. Never pick a rookie head coach and a QB learning his fifth offensive system in the opening game.

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