Generally speaking, 8-8 is not a great way to start the off the season of picking games. However, let’s not forget that I started off slow last year as well and finished pretty well above the .500 mark. It’s early and we learned a lot from last week’s slate of games. For my consistent readers of this weekly picks article, you are aware that I usually shed some light key moments from the previous week. Sometimes circumstances cause me to go in a different direction.
I would like to apologize for starters today. In my last column, I made an ill-advised joke about the Ray Rice incident and after seeing the videotape understand that this is not a joking matter at all.
Here’s Keith Olbermann’s take on the matter and those involved.
By now you too have seen the elevator videotape and have also heard countless opinions on the tragic Ray Rice and Janay Rice situation. I think it’s important we mention her name more because she is directly involved in this as the victim and for some reason we keep making this only about Ray when he certainly isn’t the only party involved or affected by this situation.
There are a few facts that cannot be disputed. 1. Ray Rice was totally in the wrong. Personally, I wouldn’t be bothered if he never suited up for another down of play in the NFL or anywhere for that matter. To play in the NFL is a privilege and most certainly not a right. Ray Rice has lost that privilege. 2. The NFL botched this from day one. I won’t go as far as to call for Roger Goodell’s job as of yet, but he seriously has some explaining to do. 3. We’re making this more about the failures of the NFL than we are about the failures of the judicial system. Ray Rice committed a crime. Of course the NFL should punish it’s players for acts that degrade “The Shield” and of course the NFL should have had access to a tape that TMZ was able to get a hold of, but we know that law enforcement did indeed have this elevator tape, for them to let Ray Rice off with pretty much no punishment is egregious.
More will come to the light in regards of the cover up and lack of a thorough investigation from the NFL, again I remind you to make sure not to forget the victims in all of this madness which includes the children of Ray and Janay Rice. Let’s also take a personal moment of silence for all victims of domestic abuse.
*UPDATE* Sheesh. I said more would come to the light but I didn’t know it would come at warp speed. The AP is now reporting that law enforcement gave the elevator tapes to an NFL executive. Happy Trails Roger.
Season Record (8-8)
Upset Special (0-1)
Pittsburgh 23 @ Baltimore 22
Miami 28 @ Buffalo 24
New Orleans 36 @ Cleveland 20
Detroit 24 @ Carolina 27
Atlanta 23 @ Cincinnati 21
Dallas 27 @ Tennessee 33
Jacksonville 29 @ Washington 21 *UPSET SPECIAL*
New England 24 @ Minnesota 18
Arizona 30 @ New York Giants 13
Seattle 31 @ San Diego 19
St. Louis 12 @ Tampa Bay 28
Kansas City 14 @ Denver 40 *GuruDAMNtee*
New York Jets 17 @ Green Bay 24
Houston 22 @ Oakland 23
Chicago 19 @ San Francisco 22
Philadelphia 27 @ Indianapolis 31
Jacksonville gets my upset special pick over Washington this week. They looked really good in the first half against the Eagles and the Skins’ looked really bad all game long against the Texans. I thought RGIII would be humbled after last season and bounce back with a huge 3rd year campaign. I won’t give up on Griffen yet, but it wouldn’t mind getting a chance to call him RG (0-3) again…PRICELESS
My “GuruDAMNtee” goes to Denver. No way they lose to KC at home this week. Alex Smith wasn’t the sole reason Kansas City lost last week, but when you get paid $75 Million to make things work, you better make things work. Anybody know why they didn’t use Jamaal Charles more last week? Weird.
I’ll take the Steelers over the Ravens this week. Baltimore is going through it right now. Ray Rice looming over their heads, AJ Green catching passes over their heads for victories. Their receivers can’t catch and Ed Reed still thinks he’s the team leader. Issues galore for those boys. My money is on Big Ben.
The preseason does matter. The Giants stink. Eli wants no part of that new system they are running in New York. On the other end of things, Larry Fitzgerald Sr. sounds like one of those parents from Pop Warner leagues who gets pissed when they don’t giver the ball to his all-star son. Fitz buries his head in his hands and mumbles “Dad SHUTUP”. One problem, his son is an all-star. But you can’t really start questioning Carson Palmer or Bruce Arians until they lose a game. Cards’ are (1-0) and if Carson not forcing the ball to Fitz can help translate to wins then so be it.
I’ll take Atlanta this week as well. I was impressed at the way they took out New Orleans. The NFC South is going to be loads of fun. Cincinnati will present a much tougher defense, but I’m going out on a limb and taking the Falcons high powered offense in a close win.
Cam Newton will be in the huddle legally this Sunday. After running out to talk to his offense in street clothes last week, which drew a warning from the league office, I look forward to seeing the next big QB/WR duo to hit the league. Cam to Kelvin Benjamin will be a scary sight for defensive coordinators. No, he’s not Megatron, but he has what it takes to be special in this league. I’ll take the Panthers and their stingy defense at home for the win.
Finally, you don’t really think Tom Brady is going out like a sucker do you? I almost made this game my lock this week. New England is NOT losing to Minnesota. PERIOD. Not because the Vikings don’t have what it takes to beat the Patriots, but because Tom Brady isn’t a sucker. Starting off the season (0-2) is not in his Hall of Fame DNA.
Think you can beat the GURU? Try and see. Leave your picks in the comments and if you win…..we’ll think of something stupid I have to do. Good luck.