THE WEEK 17 PICKS
HEY! Today is my birthday. Since I'm a giver, my gift to you all is FREE NFL predictions. I imagine the excitement among the people is indescribable, and exactly like Eagles fans pre-Joe Webb and post-Miracle at the Meadowlands III. Anywho, the final week of the regular season should be a trainwreck. Fantasy is over. The playoff picture is essentially set so we'll see the likes of Caleb Hanie. It'll be just like week four of the preseason. Who doesn't love week four of the NFL preseason? Time for my last shot at perfection until September:
Atlanta over Carolina
-The Panthers are the team that continues to give wins out, which will be quite helpful to the Falcons since they clinch home-field throughout with a victory. Clausen might intentionally throw 8 interceptions knowing that Andrew Luck will be the Panthers starting QB in 2011. I wonder if Mike Smith and his staff bothered spending more than four hours game-planning for the game and instead used the rest of the time planning their New Year's Eve party.
Pittsburgh over Cleveland
-Poor Cleveland got fooled by their football team for four weeks when the team played competent football. Those days have disappeared. Hillis is way too worn and torn and Colt McCoy is not the cosmos (tm CPP) but a simple rookie with room for improvement. Pittsburgh needs to win if they want to be champions of the AFC North. I don't really care who wins the North, to be honest. I'm a bit surprised by the Maurkice Pouncey Pro Bowl selection. He might've played outstanding center this season but many folks must've voted for him because of his terrific name. Also, the Cavs are 8-24.
Detroit over Minnesota
-Detroit had a nice comeback in Miami on Sunday. I might've insulted the Lions for most of the season but the team earned my respect these last two weeks. No doubt the Lions front office breathed a sigh relief knowing that I respect the Lions. Anywho, the Vikings would be wise to make Leslie Frazier their full-time head coach. He comes from the school of Jim Johnson and just put together the best game-plan against Vick since the late, great Jim Johnson. But Zygi Wolf is a moron and he'll probably hire Josh McDaniels.
Oakland over Kansas City
-Kansas City won't get a bye so they might as well rest some of their players. The Raiders are good enough to beat the Chiefs in a meaningful game so they should win a relatively meaningless game. The Raiders made serious progress this season. I wonder if Al Davis will fire Tom Cable for having the gall nearly finish with a winning season if not for Sebastian Janikowski.
New England over Miami
-Tom Brady deserves the MVP award. Chad Henne, meanwhile, made me look the biggest fool of a took after my weekly claims that he's a good QB. His fourth quarter against Detroit resembled the seventh season of Buffy--just a complete and utter disaster, full of mistakes and miscues. Maybe Henne's suffering from the injury he got a few weeks ago. Maybe he belongs in the NFL. WHO KNOWS? How long before Belichick steals Davone Bess from the Dolphins despite the recently signed extension?
New Orleans over Tampa Bay
-The Bucs in no way control their own destiny. A win over the Saints is just the tip of the iceberg. Morris deserves coach of the year though. I can't imagine the Saints losing the game after the dramatic win in Atlanta. They have no chance of winning the South because the Falcons have the gift game against Carolina but the defending champs need to defend their title. And it's a shame the NFC West gets a playoff spot when the Bucs deserve it. I hope the 2010 Bucs aren't the Browns from the few years. They won 10 games but didn't make the playoffs then the franchise went back to hell.
New York Jets over Buffalo
-The Bills turned the ball over seven times against an average Patriots defense. The Jets don't need to play their starters very much so the Bills could win but Rex Ryan's crazy and wants to win 11 games. Plus, Harvard and Chan Gailey seem tuckered out after a few close losses this season. Week 17's about as interesting as a cardboard box.
Baltimore over Cincinnati
-Palmer had his best game when his diva receivers didn't play. Is anyone surprised? I said this once but I'll reiterate: the Browns need to sell the team or they need to keep Marvin Lewis and promise to never overrule any football decision. They are more to blame than Lewis for the 4-11 record. As for Baltimore, they could win the division. They're in the playoffs regardless.
San Diego over Denver
-Apparently, Tebow charmed the assembled media in his post-game news conference. Good karma could very well carry the Broncos against the Chargers, who seemingly decided to stop trying last week; however, Rivers hates Denver and Norv might lose his job without a win but, of course, I have really have no clue. This game is absolutely meaningless in the grand picture of the 2010 NFL season. In other news, the year 2011 is upon us and I would like to welcome it with open arms.
Green Bay over Chicago
-As I said earlier, Caleb Hanie will get some playing time and the Packers need to win to clinch a playoff berth. The Bears defense, by the way, does not deserve the accolades they receive. Sure I might've compared them to the Jets defense but I was obviously drunk on vitamin D milk. Their defense is good but it's not terrifying. The Packers destroyed a good Giants defense last week. Rodgers might throw five touchdowns on the Bears secondary.
Indianapolis over Tennessee
-It must be weird for Peyton Manning to prepare for a Week 17 game with the knowledge that he'll play the entire game. I'm glad the Colts will make the playoffs (either with a win or an almost guaranteed Jaguars loss" because it's the Colts. Not even Jacksonville clamored for their team to make the playoffs. It'd be like people wanting a 34th season of According to Jim over wanting a second season of Freaks and Geeks.
Philadelphia over Dallas
-If Joe Webb beat the Eagles, Steve McGee could do the very same. The Eagles have a really short rest but, at least, it's a meaningless game. I'm amazed it took the sports writers of Philly so long to recognize how mediocre the Eagles defense is. Some writers wrote about the troubles of the Eagles defense like they uncovered some great and elusive truth when I knew the Eagles defense wasn't good after they nearly gave away the Detroit game in September. Andy should rest his guys and get ready for Green Bay.
San Francisco over Arizona
-I think the 49ers will give a glimpse of how good they could've been without Singletary. The coach tried to destroy the confidence of his two quarterbacks. I maintain that Eddie Jordan did one of the worst coaching jobs with the Sixers last season but Singletary just joined the Eddie Jordan club with his coaching job. As for Arizona, could Skelton be the answer to the post-Kurt Warner QB riddle? Moments after I declared that Skelton wouldn't lead a game-winning drive against Dallas, Skelton led a game-winning drive against Dallas. I dare say I'm intrigued by this meaningless NFC West game.
Washington over New York Giants
-I despise both teams. It'd be hilarious if the Redskins eliminated the Giants.
Houston over Jacksonville
-The Jaguars will try to save their season without Garrard and Jones-Drew. The only realistic chance that the Jags have to win is if the Texans simply refuse to play for Gary Kubiak and forfeit. They won't. The Texans will opt to play half-ass football knowing that they'll still collect a full paycheck. It's the American athlete way. The good fortune the Jags had earlier with the Hail Mary has turned into misfortune. Everything's circular.
St. Louis over Seattle
-Gotta love how a 6-9 team will be in the playoffs if they win. The Rams absolutely deserve to win the west. They've shown growth and progress throughout the season. The Rams rebounded after losses with wins. Meanwhile, the Seahawks have lost 7 of 9 by double digits. If the Seahawks win, it's not only time to raise the discussion about re-seeding the playoffs but about relegation for an entire division (or just relegation). Anywho, the Rams will be the final team to clinch a playoff berth.
Last Week: 11-5
THE YOUTUBE CLIP OF THE WEEK