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Weekend Football Picks and Fantasy Football 2019 (August 17-19)

The first round of Premier League Fixtures are in the books and it can be very easy to get carried away from one set of results and make swe...

Sunday, 16 December 2012

NFL Week 15 Picks 2012

Anyone who reads my picks for any of the threads I create will know that I don't ever complain about the results- usually I accept you have to take the bad days with the good and over the course of a season, the luck will level itself out.

However, the Week 14 games really did mess with my mind to the point that I felt I was deliberately being targeted by teams looking to see who could sicken me the most with their failure to cover.

It was a horrible week, but take a look at some of the bad breaks that took me down..I accept the Pittsburgh Steelers - 7.5 Points was a terrible call and I should have ignored it coming off a big win over Baltimore, but check these out:

1) Tampa Bay - 7 Points: Tampa Bay were leading by 11 points with a little under 5 minutes remaining and still allowed the Philadelphia Eagles to come back and not just cover, but outright win the game

2) Baltimore Ravens + 2.5 Points: This should have been my warning for how the entire week was going to go... Baltimore are up by 8 points with the clock running down on the game and they manage to knock Robert Griffin III out of the game. However, they can't stop Kirk Cousins throwing a touchdown pass AND complete the 2 point play to take the game to overtime.

I'm still not too bothered as Baltimore should have won in regulation barring a couple of ridiculous plays from Joe Flacco where he gave up a sack-fumble and threw and interception to avoid a sack while the Ravens were dominating. Even the three and out for the Ravens didn't bother me in overtime as I thought they wouldn't allow Cousins to dominate them for a second series... It didn't matter though as they allow a 64 yard punt return which sets up the chip shot and is the first of Special Teams that will kill me.

3) Chicago Bears - 2.5 Points: After the opening drive, Minnesota can't really get much going Offensively, but Jay Cutler helps out wonderfully by throwing 2 interceptions- one of those went back to the house, the other ended inside the Chicago 15 and the Vikings win by 7.

4) New Orleans Saints + 5 Points: I was stunned seeing what the New Orleans Saints did to kill themselves in this game against the New York Giants- first off, when was the last time a team allowed over 300 yards in kick and punt returns? Even when they got within 8, they kicked off short and allowed a different return man to go 60 yards.

That was bad enough as it meant the Giants actually had short fields all day which made life easy for them... Only for the Saints to help out by fumbling twice in the first quarter and turning the ball over 4 times!

5) Miami Dolphins + 10.5 Points: Another sickener as the Miami Dolphins were down by 7 with the clock winding down to the 2 minute warning and they have the San Francisco 49ers in a 3rd and 5 in 49ers territory.

Basically a first down for the 49ers will mean they win the game, but Colin Kaeparnick scrambles for FIFTY YARDS to score another touchdown and the Dolphins lose by 14 in a game that had been close all day.

6) Detroit Lions + 6.5 Points: This was another wonderful non-cover when it should have been easy all day long... How about this was a turn of events? Detroit lead 14-3 and are moving the chains easily throughout the first half and will likely get into the half with an 11 point lead at least... Then Matt Stafford fumbles a ball when attempting to throw a pass with no one around him. Stafford then fails to fall on the ball and an Offensive Lineman picks it up and rumbles home from 43 yards.

Stafford gets the ball back at 14-10 and is intercepted in the Green Bay red zone when driving up the field and eventually Detroit lose by 7 points in another game which was extremely close.


If I didn't have bad luck, I would have had no luck at all when it comes to the NFL for the past two weeks which have been as bad a time as I remember. Hopefully Week 15 will not be as mean spirited as Week 14 and maybe I can land on the right side of a crappy cover this week.


Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears Pick: I like the Green Bay Packers to continue rolling here and pick up the NFC North title for the following reasons:

First, Green Bay have owned the Bears in recent seasons and have dominated Jay Cutler. In fact, the Packers have beaten the Bears in 3 of the last 4 games at Soldier Field while Cutler has thrown 7 touchdowns and 17 interceptions against them in 7 games.

Second, I think the Packers are getting healthier on both sides of the ball and the return of Clay Matthews should ensure that Cutler feels pressure in the pocket for much of the day... That could force mistakes.

Third, the Packers are 7-3 against the spread as the road favourite in Divisional games and Aaron Rodgers has led them to a 21-10 record against the spread as long as he isn't laying a touchdown or more.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints Pick: I'm going to take the smallest of interests in the New Orleans Saints to win this game and cover the spread for the following reasons:

First, the Saints have to feeling terrible after their loss last week at the New York Giants and I think they will look to bounce back here in the week when their players suspensions for vacated for the bounty scandal that has had a big effect on this team.


Second, this is a Divisional game and the chance to end their rival Tampa Bay Buccaneers chances of making the Play Offs.

Third, New Orleans didn't bounce back from a loss last week, but Drew Brees is still 22-14 against the spread coming off a loss.

Fourth, I just feel Tampa Bay have come off the boil in recent weeks and may just end on the wrong side of another high-scoring game between these teams.


Minnesota Vikings @ St Louis Rams Pick: I like the home team to win this game to extend their chances of making it to the Play Offs while also ending their visitor's real hopes for the following reasons:

First, I think the St Louis Rams Defense has played at a high level and they could be catching the Minnesota Vikings at the right time following their emotional and physical win over the Chicago Bears a week ago.


Second, I think the Rams will have some success keeping Adrian Peterson in check and that means the pressure will be on Christian Ponder to make the plays without Percy Harvin. Ponder has struggled in recent games and could be forced into mistakes by a powerful pass rush generated by the Rams.

Third, I mentioned the physical toll on the Vikings- three straight Divisional games prior to this one might have taken something out of them despite the big win last week to keep their Play Off hopes alive.


Jacksonville Jaguars @ Miami Dolphins Pick: I am taking the underdog on the road to at least keep this game close for the following reasons:

First, Chad Henne... The Quarter Back gets a chance to play the team that traded him in the off-season and he has Cecil Shorts returning this week. Miami have struggled against the pass and Henne may want to remind fans that he was a serviceable Quarter Back after all.


Second, despite being in play for the Number 1 pick in the Draft, the Jaguars will at least play with some pride I would guess as this is a Florida clash.

Third, Miami are a really bad home favourite, going 8-33 against the spread in this spot over the last ten seasons, including 0-2 in their last two spots like this against St Louis and Tennessee.


Denver Broncos @ Baltimore Ravens Pick: I do like Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos to pick up their biggest win of the season and prove their are SuperBowl contenders for the following reasons:

First, Denver are the hottest team in the NFL and I think the Baltimore Ravens are limping badly with injuries to the Defense being a big problem. Peyton Manning is 8-0 against them since 2003 and the Ravens are definitely not as good as some of the teams he would have faced.

Second, the Broncos should be absolutely focused with a chance to finish with a top two seed in the Conference. I also think they are motivated by the fact that all three losses they have suffered have come against Atlanta, Houston and New England and they need a statement win or will be considered as a team that only beats 'crappy' teams.

Third, the Broncos have had plenty of rest for this game, while Baltimore could be falling sorry for themselves having lost close games to Pittsburgh and Washington when they should have won both. They also have a new Offensive Co-Ordinator so could have some issues getting on the same page.


Detroit Lions @ Arizona Cardinals Pick: I am backing the Lions again this week, but for these reasons:

First, Arizona look like a team that has given up on the season and their Quarter Backs suck... The Offensive Line is going to get blown up by the likes of Fairley and Suh and I don't know how the Cardinals keep the chains moving consistently.


Second, both teams are on long losing runs, but Matt Stafford or Ryan Lindley?


Seattle Seahawks @ Buffalo Bills Pick: I like the 'home' underdog to cover the spread for the following reasons:

First, I put 'home' in the inverted commas as the game is being played in Toronto rather than Buffalo, but the Bills will be more used to this travelling these days and will want to put on a performance for their fans north of the border.

Second, this is a bad spot for Seattle as it is a non-Conference game between two Divisional contests with a big game against San Francisco on deck.

Third, Seattle are just 4-11 against the spread in recent seasons when set as the road underdog, including going 0-3 in this spot this season.


Pittsburgh Steelers @ Dallas Cowboys Pick: I am backing the Pittsburgh Steelers to win this game and cover the spread for the following reasons:

First, the spread has been moving between these two teams all week but that shows how close it is with very similar teams going against one another. However, I feel the Steelers are getting a little healthier, while Dez Bryant could be limited and Morris Claibourne is out to further the issues in the Dallas Defense.

Second, the Cowboys are a horrible home favourite, going 3-16 against the spread in that situation since the beginning of the 2010 season.

Third, the Steelers are 9-2 against the spread when coming off a loss in the last three seasons.

Fourth, Pittsburgh are also very solid when playing NFC teams, going 8-3 against the spread in the last three seasons in that spot.


Kansas City Chiefs @ Oakland Raiders Pick: I'll have a small interest on the terrible Kansas City Chiefs to keep it close against the terrible Oakland Raiders for the following reasons:

First, this is a game that could decide the Number 1 pick in the Draft, but the Chiefs should be motivated by the fact that they are playing a Divisional rival and won't want to be embarrassed by them.

Second, the road team has dominated the recent series with 11 wins from the last 12 in that situation.

Third, Oakland are 1-7 against the spread as the home favourite in Divisional games, while they are  4-16 against the spread as the home favourite in recent seasons period. Kansas City are 11-4 against the spread as the road underdog in Divisional games.

Fourth, confidence is shot in Oakland where a big rebuilding needs to be undertaken and they may even be considering that a loss in this one would be beneficial for their future... That thinking could see another under-performance in this one while Jamaal Charles should have a lot of success against a run Defense that has stunk.


San Francisco 49ers @ New England Patriots Pick: I like the New England Patriots to continue their form and knock off another top team for the following reasons:

First, New England had a blow out victory on Monday Night Football and teams usually ride that momentum to another cover on the following Sunday with plenty of momentum behind them, going 41-21 against the spread in that game.

Second, I think the 49ers may be looking past this game at the big one against Seattle next weekend which could determine who takes the NFC West.

Third, the Patriots have a huge December winning run and this is a tough spot for a team travelling across the country from a warmer climate like the San Francisco team will be doing.


MY PICKS: Green Bay Packers - 2.5 Points @ 1.95 Ladbrokes (3 Units)
New Orleans Saints - 3.5 Points @ 1.95 Pinnacle (1 Unit)
St Louis Rams - 2.5 Points @ 2.00 Blue Square (2 Units)
Jacksonville Jaguars + 8 Points @ 1.92 Bet Fred (2 Units)
Denver Broncos - 3 Points @ 2.10 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Detroit Lions - 6 Points @ 1.95 Pinnacle (1 Unit)
Buffalo Bills + 4.5 Points @ 2.00 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Pittsburgh Steelers + 1 Point @ 2.00 Pinnacle (3 Units)
Kansas City Chiefs + 4.5 Points @ 1.95 Bet Fred (2 Units)
New England Patriots - 4 Points @ 1.95 Bet Fred (2 Units)

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