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Championship Sunday Games Thread

| January 24th, 2016

olsen

Money Mouth

Nine games over for the season. Need a 2-1 finish this week to set up an all-or-nothing Super Bowl to reach my coveted a 10 games over for the year.

Patriots -3 over Broncos / Panthers -3 over Cardinals

Two best teams in the league meet in the Super Bowl.

Patriots & Broncos Under 45

I had the final score at 27-17 Patriots. That’s 44. Works for me.

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Money Mouth: Divisional Round Picks

| January 15th, 2016

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I have no idea what’s going to happen this weekend. Not a single result would surprise me. So I’m going back to picking SOMETHING for these games. I finished the season six over .500. Still have a chance to get to ten over. But I need a strong performance. (For some reason I didn’t include spreads last week but I would have gone 2-2 any way you slice it.)

PATRIOTS OVER 23.5 PTS VS. CHIEFS

Here’s what Bill Belichick knows: his offensive line can’t protect Tom Brady from the Chiefs pass rush. And since no coach in history has been better at self-evaluation, he won’t ask them to try. Instead Brady will go to the quick-release pass attack with Edelman Edelman Edelman and neutralize Houston, Hali and company. I think it works. Not sure if Pats are healthy enough to win but they are healthy enough to score.

PACKERS +7 AT CARDINALS

I am going to be rooting very hard in this game so I’m making an emotional hedge. Would love to lose this one.

PANTHERS OVER 23.5 PTS VS. SEAHAWKS

Here are the Carolina scores over the last 8 games: 27, 44, 33, 41, 38, 38, 13, 38. I say they play with a chip on their shoulder as the media at-large keeps trying to convince fans the team is overrated. (2015 Panthers remind me an awful lot of the 2006 Bears. Nobody thought that team could make the Super Bowl until their plane landed in Miami.) Bold prediction: Panthers beat them up.

I will not be making a selection in the Broncos/Steelers game as there’s no point. Unless someone can prove to me Roethlisberger will be healthy it’s a sucker’s wager. But without Antonio Brown I’d need a big number to take Pittsburgh.

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Money Where My Mouth Is: Three Picks For Week 14

| December 10th, 2015

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Let’s face it. Last week should have been an 0-3 week but Jim Caldwell conspired to get me on the board. Need a winning week to return that warm and fuzzy feeling to the old wallet. Let’s go.

PITTSBURGH & CINCINNATI OVER 49.5 PTS

Pittsburgh has the most exciting passing in the NFL and – arguably – one of the five worst secondaries. Maybe these teams will shock me and revert to the division’s previous form but I see both teams scoring and scoring at will. Steelers 31, Bengals 30

NEW ENGLAND -3 AT HOUSTON

The Patriots lost two weeks ago, right? They lost last week too, right? When’s the last time they lost three games in a row? I won’t do the research and will just assume Pete Carroll was the coach. Buffalo put together a game plan to neutralize J.J. Watt and exposed the backend of the Texans defense. Expect Tom Brady to put the Pats back into the win column, even if he might be the team’s best receiver. Patriots 27, Texans 14

NEW YORK GIANTS -1.5 AT MIAMI

The Giants stink. They also are going to win the Super Bowl. But in order to do that they must make the postseason. They’ll take the pole position in the NFC East after this week’s done. Giants 20, Dolphins 17

Season Record: 20-17-2

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Money Where My Mouth Is: Three Picks For Week Seven

| October 22nd, 2015

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2-0-1 this week because I was apparently the only person on earth who had the Bears +3 instead of the 4.5 they went off at by kickoff. 7-1-1 over my last nine picks.

No joke. I hate the games this week. Hate the games. Hate the lines. So it’s going to take some luck.

COLTS -4.5 OVER SAINTS

While the football world was declaring the Pats would beat the Colts Sunday night by 100 points as some kind of deflation retribution, Luck kept the Colts neck-and-neck until his moron head coach decided to run one of the stupidest plays every devised for the game of football. Even Chuck Pagano, a terrible head coach, won’t be able to prevent Luck from shredding the Saints defense at home. Indianapolis 34, New Orleans 20.

PATRIOTS UNDER 28.5 VS. NEW YORK JETS

The Jets are the best defense in football and if Ryan Fitzpatrick doesn’t go through a six-week run of interceptions – as is his history – they are going to be a beast to deal with in the postseason. (A Jets v. Broncos wild card game could go to penalty field goals.) New England is the better team here but I like needing them to score more than four touchdowns. New England 20, New York 17.

RAMS -5.5 OVER BROWNS

Rams are good. Browns are not good. Rams defense is terrific. The last time Josh McCown went into St. Louis as a starting quarterback he was thoroughly embarrassed. Rams have Todd Gurley. Browns have the league’s worst rush defense. I don’t see how this game is close. St. Louis 27, Cleveland 6.

Season Record: 10-6-2

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Ten Thoughts From Around the League

| October 21st, 2015

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THOUGHTS FROM AROUND THE LEAGUE

(1) Eli Manning was the best and worst player in the league on the FIRST TWO DRIVES of the Monday Night Football game. There’s never been a player like him in the league.

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(2) After the first week of the season it became in vogue to question whether Tampa Bay made a mistake selecting Jameis Winston over Marcus Mariota. In the four games since Winston has been undoubtedly the better player and Mariota has shown two features that worried many scouts: inability to absorb contact and lack of ball security. Interestingly enough, nobody has revisited this question in the national media. If Winston wants to know how he’ll be covered an an NFL quarterback, he should just call Cam Newton.

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(3) Is Cincinnati the best team in football right now? New England and Green Bay are not good defensively. Carolina and Denver are not good offensively. Cincy does everything well. They’ll still lose in the playoffs but they may be losing that game in the division round instead of wild card weekend.

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(4) You know what the worst development of the NFL season has been? The games stink.

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(5) I don’t care what the stats say. Brandon Marshall has been the best wide receiver in football this year. He’s transformed the New York Jets offense.

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