Welcome back, football fans, to our quasi-professional football picks! Each week we will pick game winners based on Vegas over/under lines, and add some the greatest preview commentary in the world! That’s right, ESPN, we said it.
Our token Brit Rob Wheatley to the top of the leader-board, and everyone else is finally above .500 going into Week 15 Well, almost everyone else.
Thursday, December 13th, 2012
Cincinnati Bengals @ Philadelphia Eagles
LINE: Bengals by 4
Evil Peyton Manning:
The Eagles used all of their duct tape and bubble gum to hold their team together last week and defeat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. I know this because I was there. I went to Raymond James Stadium, tailgated with some die-hard Bucs fans, sat in the cheap section that had more Eagles fans than Bucs fans, and left at the 2:00 warning because I believed the Eagles would fall apart at the seams. Now they face a former legitimate team in the Bengals. Former, since their all-but-assured playoff spot is now up for grabs.
Rob Wheatley: Bengals-WIN
Darby Shaw: Bengals-WIN
Steve Elle: Bengals-WIN
Sunday, December 16th, 2012
New York Giants @ Atlanta Falcons
LINE: Falcons by 1
The Falcons are doing their by now predictable backslide from early season utter dominance (anyone remember talk of Matt Ryan for MVP a few months ago? Does anyone still talk about this? I think not) to late season ho hum, yawn worthy play. Their passing game is pretty good. Their running game is bad. Their defense is mediocre. This is not a championship team. The Giants are their opposite. They start slowly, are up and down mid season and then usually turn it up late season. Well, it’s December. You do the math.
Rob Wheatley: Giants-LOSS
Darby Shaw: Giants-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Giants-LOSS
Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears
LINE: Packers by 3
I just watched a science program all about microscopic animals, and one of the featured bugs was a thing called a Water Bear. This tiny life form, although only the size of a mosquito’s penis, is reckoned to be just about the toughest thing in the universe. To prove this, Scientists have apparently frozen them alive, shot them into space, landed them on the surface of the sun, flushed them down an English pub toilet, and then forced them to watch a whole season of American Idol while repeatedly hitting them with a shoe. The buggers still survived, which makes me question the intelligence of the scientists involved. I mean, if I were going to treat something like that, I’d probably want to do it to the least hardy animal I could find, like a moth or something, certainly not anything that was going to survive, and certainly not the hardest bastard in all of creation. I hear the same scientists are now trying to get funding for their new research. They intend see what happens when they call The Incredible Hulk a big green pussy !
Darby Shaw: Packers-WIN
Steve Elle: Bears-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Packers-WIN
Washington Redskins @ Cleveland Browns
In case you hadn’t noticed, RGIII is the second-highest rated QB in the NFL, with Tom Brady edging him out by a nicely-trimmed nostril hair. Oh, and by the way, he’s also a top-20 rusher, with more yards than several starting RBs. In other words, to hell with the rest of the Redskins. Just sit back, pop open a beer, and don’t blink for the next three hours. Meanwhile, the Browns have quietly thrown together a three-game winning streak, beating such powerhouses as the Oakland Cheaters, the Kansas City Weebles, and the Pittsburgh Charlie Batches. This game will go down to the wire, only nobody will care.
Rob Wheatley: Redskins-WIN
Steve Elle: Browns-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Browns-LOSS
Minnesota Vikings @ St. Louis Rams
LINE: Rams by 3
It is often thought that the modern day condom had its origins in 16th Century France, however, back then rubber hadn’t been discovered, so the inventor used what he had lying about at the time; the intestines of a sheep, (This WAS 16th Century France, sheep intestines literally littered the place). These were very successful apart from the fact that they generally took twenty minutes or more to put on, due to the sheep intestine being over forty feet in length. Recent research I just made up, however, disputes this theory. According to a dream I just had, it was actually our old friends the Vikings who first hit upon the idea of using a ram’s intestines for the job. Fair enough, the French did add a few small refinements, notably, killing and gutting the animal first, but Viking women were very accommodating, and moreover, it was extremely difficult to get anyone pregnant when you had a farmyard animal strapped to the end of your old chap, so everyone died happy.
Darby Shaw: Vikings-WIN
Steve Elle: Vikings-WIN
Evil Peyton Manning: Rams-LOSS
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Miami Dolphins
LINE: Dolphins by 7
In a battle of irrelevant Florida teams, the Dolphins are less irrelevant. Somehow the local Miami media was coerced to telecast this game because it most certainly will not be sold out. And for those watching on TV, no, there is not an influx of orange, seat shaped team shirts out there; alas, those ARE empty seats. So in an interesting twist, it will be Dolphin QB of the recent past (Chad Henne) against hopeful Dolphin QB of the present and future (Ryan Tannehill). There are other storylines of course but they are buried beneath a sea of irrelevance.
Rob Wheatley: Dolphins-WIN
Darby Shaw: Jaguars-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Jaguars-LOSS
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints
LINE: Saints by 4
The Bucs have a chance to make the playoffs this year. Theoretically I also have a chance to be President of the United States by way of basic qualifications (US citizen, over 35 [gulp], devastatingly handsome, etc), but guess what? I’ll never be president and though nominally more likely, the Bucs won’t be in the playoffs this year. But I think they’ll win this game. The Saints have supposedly been playing with a chip on their shoulder all season. But based on their early season losing streak this may have been a potato chip. They have since brushed the chip off and have played much better. But they are still a rudderless ship. The Bucs, after playing their worst game of the year (and still nearly beating the hapless Eagles) need a turnaround game and should get it Sunday.
Rob Wheatley: Saints-WIN
Darby Shaw: Buccaneers-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Saints-WIN
Denver Broncos @ Baltimore Ravens
LINE: Broncos by 3
Is there a less impressive 9-4 team than this year’s Ravens? Their offense is painful to watch, and their defense has more torn muscles than a… torn… muscle… convention. Meanwhile, Peyton Manning is being mentioned as an MVP candidate in a year where his biggest competition for the award are two rookie QBs who had exactly zero expectations placed on them and a running back coming off an exploded knee. Whoopee. Let’s face it: Manning is only thriving in Denver because the reduced gravity that high puts a reduced strain on his neck supporting his gigantic forehead.
Rob Wheatley: Ravens-LOSS
Steve Elle: Broncos-WIN
Evil Peyton Manning: Broncos-WIN
Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans
LINE: Texans by 10
Evil Peyton Manning:
Last Monday night’s debacle between the Texans and Patriots was probably the biggest let-down of the season since the replacement refs began officiating. The Texans seemed to be playing their own version of a Pro Bowl, complete with half-speed effort and vanilla play-calling. I’m not saying the Texans lost on purpose but, considering that was a potential match-up for the AFC Championship, not showing your hand to Bill Belichick in a game that has almost no consequence could be a safe call. Besides, the Texans should beat a Manning-less Colts team at least once to get home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, right?
Rob Wheatley: Colts-LOSS
Darby Shaw: Colts-LOSS
Steve Elle: Texans-WIN
Seattle Seahawks @ Buffal0 Bills
LINE: Seahawks by 6
The Seahawks boast the second-best running back in the league, the third-best rookie QB in the league, and the hands-down worst division in the league. Is there any wonder they’re knocking on the door to the playoffs? Of course, in two years they’ll be the LA Seahawks, because their city is too busy supporting their soccer team to notice their NFL franchise slipping away. The city of Buffalo, however, can’t get rid of their team quick enough. They’re just hoping that the dumbasses up in Toronto are willing to take the sad-sack Bills off their hands for eight games a season, instead of just one.
Rob Wheatley: Seahawks-WIN
Steve Elle: Seahawks-WIN
Evil Peyton Manning: Seahawks-WIN
Detroit Lions @ Arizona Cardinals
LINE: Lions by 6
I have used this analogy in the past, where I smirkingly pit the actual team mascot/animal against each other as if this were wild kingdom. Today’s mash up is among the worst. Because we have the Lions, you know, big cats, king of the jungle and all that nonsense, pitted against…cardinals. Yes, as in the bird variety. In pretty much every scenario a lion devours a cardinal, probably without much actual chewing. Of course the bird can fly away and escape that way but that’s cheating. It’s like getting in a fight with someone and then taking a cab 2 miles away and waiting for the other guy to catch up and then take another cab, etc, but I digress. Regarding the game…the Cardinals lost last week in uber embarrassing fashion. Ken Whisenhunt will have his team ready this week. The Lions are out of it. They are amusing to watch as one waits for N. Suh to urinate on an opponent in his never ending quest to find new and creative ways to draw fines from the NFL and further cement his dirtiest player in the NFL designation. Good times.
Rob Wheatley: Lions-LOSS
Darby Shaw: Lions-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Lions-LOSS
Carolina Panthers @ San Diego Chargers
LINE: Chargers by 3
A few nights ago here, we had a power cut, or power outage as you crazy Americans call them. Luckily I had a torch with its own built-in friction charger. You work this trigger, that spins a flywheel, and some dynamo effect makes the light come on, great stuff. I was thinking about harnessing other unused power around the house . How about putting a some photo-electric / solar panel style cell thing under the toilet seat in houses lived in by single men. Every time they leave the loo with the seat up and the light on, it harnesses the power. Another idea is wind-farm seating for vegetarians. I bought one of those electric cars the other day. I’ve only been ten feet in it so far because I don’t have a longer extension cord. You’d reckon somebody would have noticed that during the design stage.
Darby Shaw: Panthers-WIN
Steve Elle: Chargers-LOSS
Evil Peyton Manning: Panthers-WIN
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Dallas Cowboys
LINE: Steelers by 1
According to my information, Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware is going into this game with a hyper-extended elbow….WOW !! That sounds amazing, hyper-extended, like it’s capable of reaching great distances. Imagine how far he’s going to be able to throw that big bean thing with an elbow that can fold out several feet. I bet it’s made of metal too, like some Terminator thing. Hopefully he’ll get to ride a Harley down some storm drains and chuck the other guys into a molten metal pit while shouting “I’ll be baaaaack”. One to watch.
Darby Shaw: Steelers-LOSS
Steve Elle: Cowboys-WIN
Evil Peyton Manning: Steelers-LOSS
Kansas City Chiefs @ Oakland Raiders
LINE: Raiders by 3
This game is for pride. It has to be, because it sure as hell doesn’t have any playoff implications. While Romeo Crennel wanders cluelessly on one sideline, whoever is coaching the Raiders this season (do they even HAVE a coach?) will be checking the classified ads on the other sideline, hoping there’s a Sandwich Artist opening at Subway. This game makes me wish the NFL were like the Premier League over in England, where the worst teams get pushed down to the minor leagues for a while. In fact, maybe we could just do that to the entire AFC West. I don’t even care who wins this game.
Rob Wheatley: Raiders-WIN
Steve Elle: Raiders-WIN
Evil Peyton Manning: Raiders-WIN
San Francisco 49ers @ New England Patriots
LINE: Patriots by 6
Evil Peyton Manning:
The Kaepernick vs. Smith quarterback controversy has begun its assault on the Niners locker room, as Brandon Jacobs began complaining about his lack of playing time. The idea that Jacobs believes that he should have as many carries as Frank Gore is speculative and laughable but, considering his past with the New York Giants, not entirely impossible. Meanwhile, the New England Patriots continue their “potential post-season” exhibition games, this time against a team that has something to lose: home field advantage.
Rob Wheatley: Patriots-LOSS
Darby Shaw: Patriots-LOSS
Steve Elle: Patriots-LOSS
Monday, December 17th, 2012
New York Jets @ Tennessee Titans
LINE: Titans by 1
Evil Peyton Manning:
With Braylon Edwards back in the Jets camp, many questions are raised. Will Sanchez finally look better while having a legitimate receiver to throw to? Will the Jets sign T.O. to flesh out the other side of their receiver corp? What the hell took so long for the Jets to make a move? The most looming question, however, is how did this game go to Monday night? Whatever happens, Jon Gruden will never be at a loss for witty jabs at these teams.
Rob Wheatley: Jets-LOSS
Darby Shaw: Titans-WIN
Steve Elle: Jets-LOSS
Rob Wheatley: 114-109
Steve Elle: 111-112
Darby Shaw: 110-113
Evil Peyton Manning: 108-115