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October 24, 2019

Week 8 NFL picks

For the gambling degenerates, here are my Week 8 NFL picks. To note, the team logos indicate who I think will win the game, not cover the spread. At the end of the picks, I'll note a few teams that I like based on the spread.


Washington at Vikings (-16): After facing some serious adversity, the Vikings are suddenly one of the hottest teams in the NFL. The Washington team remains a disgrace, but at least their fans have the Nats.


Eagles at Bills (-1.5): The Bills are 5-1, which is great, buuuuut the five teams they have beaten have a combined point differential of -359. I watched a couple of their games, and came away far less impressed than I was anticipating for a team with their record.

They have a below average quarterback playing behind a below average offensive line, throwing to a group of below average receivers, and handing the ball off to a 36-year-old running back. Their defense, meanwhile, had a very nice game against the Patri*ts, and they are good, but let's not get out of control there. Nice defense, nothing special.

The Bills have a 23-game playoff win drought, and I hope they win a playoff game this year for their fans, but I just don't see it. 

Of course, it's hard to pick the Eagles right now, given how terribly they have played the last two weeks, but if they can't get it together, against this team, when their backs are against the wall, they should really just go ahead and mail in the rest of the season.

Maybe I'm just going down with the ship.


Bengals at Rams (-13.5): Next.


Seahawks at Falcons (no line): There's no line on this game because it's unknown if Matt Ryan will play or not. Either way, the Falcons have completely unraveled this season and it doesn't seem to be getting any better anytime soon.


Chargers at Bears (-4): For the tenth straight year, the Chargers have fooled me into thinking they'd be good this season.


Giants at Lions (-6.5): I appreciate the Lions' self-awareness, in that they're 2-3-1 (which isn't horrible) and have been in every game they have played, but they still realize they're not legitimate contenders and have already begun selling off players they don't think they can keep. Kudos. Anyway, despite going into seller mode, they're still clearly better than the Giants.


Jets at Jaguars (-6): There was a big to-do made over Sam Darnold being mic'd up and saying that he was seeing ghosts when playing the Patri*ts last week. I was asked what that means. Here you go:

It's really not that big a deal. He was confused by the Pats' defenses. How is this any sort of crazy quote? 


Cardinals at Saints (-10): When I first saw this line, my first thought was, Wait, is Drew Brees back or something? And, yep


Buccaneers at Titans (-2.5): I don't really have any strong opinions on this game, but the Bucs are kinda maybe a little fun to watch, and the Titans... aren't? That's all I got.


Broncos at Colts (-5.5): The Colts were good to me, point spread-wise early in the season when most overreacted to the loss of Andrew Luck, but it appears that Vegas has adapted.


Panthers at 49ers (-5.5): I pick against the Panthers every week, and they keep winning. They're kind of like the anti-Eagles, in that I keep picking them to win and they keep losing.


Browns at Patri*ts (-13): Ah, Cleveland, where Bill Belichick learned his craft, including how to cheat, by paying players under the table, thus not counting toward the salary cap, and I'm sure plenty of other ways as well.


Raiders at Texans (-6): Here are the Raiders' last 5 weeks:

  1. At Minnesota
  2. At Indianapolis
  3. At London (playing a "home" game against the Bears)
  4. Then they did have their bye, at least.
  5. At Green Bay

Now they have to play in Houston. They haven't had a game in Oakland since Week 2. That is insane, and that team has to be very tired.


Packers (-4.5) at Chiefs: Matt Moore did not look good when he had to come on in relief of Patrick Mahomes last week, but in a rare twist, the Chiefs' defense carried the offense for a change. Aaron Rodgers is playing like the Aaron Rodgers of old, and I expect him to be able to outscore the MVP-less Chiefs.

I do think, however, that 4.5 points is juuuust at the right spot where I like the Chiefs to cover.


Dolphins at Steelers (-14.5): As you'll see in a minute, I like the Steelers this week in the suicide pool. I don't like them to cover more than 2 TDs, though.

Animal vs. animal matchups

  1. Bengals at Rams: Next.
  2. Seahawks at Falcons: As mentioned last week, a seahawk isn't even a real bird, so they are disqualified.
  3. Broncos at Colts: A bronco isn't a breed of horse. It just refers to a horse that is feral or untrained, and will buck when agitated. A colt, meanwhile, is just a young horse. I'll take the bronco all day.

Survivor pool pick

If you're just copying my picks each week, congratulations! You're still alive. Last week was an easy call with the Bills at home against the Dolphins. This week should be an easy week to advance past with the red-hot Vikings at home against Washington, and the Steelers at home against the Dolphins.

I like the Vikings better this week, but they could also be a good play Week 11 at home against the Broncos in an otherwise potentially difficult week to navigate. The Steelers, meanwhile, will never have a more favorable matchup than this. Give me the Steelers at home against the potentially winless Dolphins.

Teams already used: 

  1. Week 1: Eagles
  2. Week 2: Ravens
  3. Week 3: Cowboys
  4. Week 4: Chargers
  5. Week 5: Patri*ts
  6. Week 6: Packers
  7. Week 7: Bills

BYES: Cowboys, Ravens.

• Picks against the spread: Eagles (+1.5), Texans (-6), Chiefs (+4.5).

• Eagles picks: 2-5 (I'm ashamed)

• 2019 season, straight up: 57-49-1 (0.537)
• 2019 season, ATS: 21-15 (0.583)
• 2018 season, straight up: 173-94-2 (0.647)
• 2018 season, ATS: 41-36-2 (0.532)
• 2017 season, straight up: 181-86 (0.678)
• 2017 season, ATS: 36-32-2 (0.529)
• 2016 season, straight up: 171-94-2 (0.644)
• 2016 season, ATS:  41-34 (0.547)
• 2015 season, straight up: 163-93 (0.637)
• 2015 season, ATS: 46-30-2 (0.605)

• Last 5 years, ATS: 185-147-6 (0.556)

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