Well, with only 2 hours to go until the start of the NFL season, I'm pretty psyched for the games, though not overly high on the Redskins chances this year. (Though, Joe Theissman picked them to the Super Bowl this afternoon on Sportstalk 980)
As with all years, this is when my online gambling gets a dramatic increase, and so I figured I'd share with you my triumphs and my travesties each and every week. Along with my own bets, I'll give you my overall picks just so I can keep tally versus Catheter Man, who seems to be doing the same thing on his blog as well. So, here goes.
BETS I LIKE FOR THIS WEEK:
St. Louis (-6) at San Francisco: This one was as low as 4 points earlier in the week, but damned Sportsbook wasn't working! I took St. Louis with the points and still feel pretty solid that the Rams offense will put a huge hurting on San Fran. I probably would have taken the bet all the way up to 9 points, but who's complaining.
Tennessee (+7) at Pittsburgh: I know that Pittsburgh went to the AFC championship game last year and all, but they're starting their 3rd string running back and Ben Roethlisberger is still not Dan Marino (I don't care what comparisons people want to make). Add to that the loss of Plaxico Burress, and a healthy Steve McNair, and this game seems like a close one. It's in Pittsburgh, so I can't recommend the straight up pick, so I went with Tennessee and the points.
Chicago at Washington (-5.5): Perhaps a homer bet, but I usually steer clear of the Skins. This one just seemed like a gimme, as I really think Chicago has no chance of scoring an offensive TD in this game. Even the Skins crappy offense should be able to muster up 10 points or more to give Washington the victory by 6 or more.
Houston (+190) at Buffalo: Buffalo is favored by 5.5 pts, but I really don't think JP Losman can handle this offense. Willis McGahee proved he was a solid back late in the season last year, but that was with a mild threat at quarterback in Drew Bledsoe to keep the defense honest. I think Houston will stack the line and dare Losman to beat them. ..and he won't. On offense, the Texans have the tools to be good, if only their line can hold up. I see Houston pulling this one out, 17-14, so I'm taking Houston straight up.
MY OTHER PICKS: (just for show...bet at your own risk)
New England (-7.5) easily covers the spread in a big victory against Oakland. I see this as an offensive explosion, ending around 42-24.
Broncos (-4.5) should beat up on the Ricky-less Dolphins, though I think this could be a more competitive game than most.
Bengals (-3.5) should walk over Cleveland, but I still didn't want to put money on this. Trent Dilfer is an amazing talent, despite getting no respect.
Saints (+7) will put up a good fight against the powerful Panthers, but I'm not sure if they can win this one with all that's been going on and playing in Carolina. I'd take the Saints and the points, and figure we'll see a real close fight. I'm hoping to see alot of Brooks to Horn for my fantasy squad too.
The Bucs (+6) are always competitive because of their defense and I don't think the post-Randy Moss era is going to be as stellar as expected in Minnesota. I think Minnesota might eek a win out, but it will be closer than 6.
Jacksonville (-3) is an up and coming team with a solid defensive game plan. I like them to beat up on Seattle's offense and really light up the crappy Seattle defense, possibly 38-17.
The Chiefs are still terrible on defense, so I'm overlooking the fact that they're playing at home and giving the nod to the Jets (+3) to pull the upset. Chad Pennington has never gotten the respect he deserves because of all his injuries, but he is the next Joe Montana. Unfortunatley, Laveraneous Coles is not the next Jerry Rice, but Chad will still have very efficient numbers.
I hate the Giants, especially Jeremy Shockey, but especially Eli Manning. The new-look Cardinals (+3) will have everyone singing the praises of bible-thumper Kurt Warner once again.
The Packers defense is way too crappy for Joey Harrington and the Lions (-3) to not beat them at home. Brett Favre always struggles in Detroit, so this is possibly one of the stronger bets I haven't bet on.
The Cowboys (+4.5) are my sleeper playoff team for this year, and it's gotta start by beating up on last year's surprising Chargers. Benching Antonio Gates might come back to haunt them as I think they'll lose this one in a very close game, maybe 21-20.
Did anyone see Peyton Manning play last year? I can't bet against him, even against the Ravens. The Colts (-3) should put up points, even against a tough defense and cover that spread.
The battle of the two most overhyped football players in the NFL. T.O. versus Vick. The problem is, T.O. has McNabb and Vick has...nobody. Advantage Eagles (-1).
Those are my picks, I'll have my result and more picks next week...probably on Friday or Saturday.