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.