Thursday, October 18, 2012

2012 Week 7 NFL Picks

Andy Reid fired defensive coordinator Juan Castillo Tuesday morning. Reid promised changes to the team during their bye week, in light of the terrible loss to Detroit on Sunday. I learned Castillo would be the Eagles defensive coordinator on a cold afternoon in February 2011. My reaction was similar to my reaction when the Sixers signed Kwame Brown in the offseason: 'this is what going insane must feel like.' Juan Castillo's actually one of my favorite Eagles coaches in the franchise's history, on the offensive side of the ball, that is. I loved his offensive lines for years. Castillo could insert any center and make it work. I'll always remember Sports Illustrated's cover of Hank Fraley and Jamaal Jackson, face-to-face, because they were going to compete for the starting center spot. I ragged on Castillo a lot last season and decided to tone it down in 2012. Paul Domowich wrote a great column about the firing and why Juan's a scapegoat. It was a confounding move with little chance for success.

I must assess my own self, like Coach Reid, after a truly horrible week six of picks. Perfection's been my goal since 2006. The flip side of perfection is humiliation, i.e. a 0-16 week. I rarely flirt with total defeat. There are times when it looks like every early game pick is wrong before some team wins. I'm usually disappointed, oddly. A part of me wants to deal with the ignominy of a 0-16 week. I'm the same guy who wrote about Eureka two episodes before its series finale and received SHIT for it. Of course, no one would notice or care that I went 0-16 besides myself, or maybe Funk but not really because it's picks. I nearly had the 0-14 week, but 3 teams ruined it. It would've been classic if the Chargers loss sealed my 0-14 week. Instead, it was just a bad week of picks.

San Francisco over Seattle

-Sidney Rice had his first great play since the 2009 Vikings season. Rice used to receive the hype and praise Percy Harvin currently gets. Maybe Seattle's the place where promising wide receivers that burned out through injury or laziness go to revive their careers. Maybe Seattle's the only city for this; after all, it is the Emerald City, which evokes images of Oz. I imagine Sidney Rice and Braylon Edwards wearing red shoes before and after practice and games, closing their eyes, tapping their shoes together, repeating, "I'll be a good and dependable wide receiver again; I'll be a good and dependable wide receiver again!" It worked for Mike Williams. Williams was released once Seattle signed Braylon Edwards. I don't know about you, but I think Braylon stole Williams' red shoes. Anyway, I love great defensive games. I think this will be a great defensive game.

Buffalo over Tennessee

-I came crawling back to Harvard Fitzpatrick like Grima Wormtongue in the Lord of the Rings during the Bills overtime win. I told stories about Harvard's humble beginnings at tiny Harvard University, his forgotten years in St. Louis, his run of mediocrity with the Bengals, and his rare successes in Buffalo. The Bills seemed like a 1-5 team. They're actually 3-3 and in a four-way tie for first place. Spiller and Jackson each had productive games. Tennessee won last Thursday with Chris Johnson rushing for 91 yards. I have no idea what the health status of Locker is. I forgot about the Titans/Steelers game immediately it ended.

Indianapolis over Cleveland

-Joe Banner replaces Holmgren on October 25. In somewhat surprising news, Tom Heckert's on the chopping block. I thought Banner would come in and pal around with his old Eagles buddies. The common Cleveland thought, for me, is: 'they're terrible, but young.' Heckert hasn't been horrible in rebuilding the team. The win over Cleveland is a step in the right direction. In other news, Paul Ryan mistook Brandon Weeden for Colt McCoy. I'd like to think Ryan wanted to meet Colt after watching Go On, which would tap into Ryan's desire to one-up Matthew Perry. Why would he want to do that? I don't know. I'm so used to picking the Browns to lose, I didn't think about the Colts losing 35-9 to the Jets, or Bruce Arians' absolute disgust with the play of Andrew Luck.

Green Bay over St. Louis

-Aaron Rodgers threw 6 touchdowns in the win over the Texans Sunday night. Sam Bradford lost to Ryan Tannehill. Peter King, of course, thinks Tannehill is reason enough for the 'rookie' title to be discarded and thrown into a fire. The Rams are a nice story every couple of weeks, but they're a mediocre team. They'll hang for awhile and lose. I trust Green Bay's motivated again and the game won't end in the Rams winning 16-12.

Minnesota over Arizona

-The Vikings possess the talent to score some touchdowns when they're down. The team seemed like they'd struggle to score this season, even with Percy Harvin and Adrian Peterson. Arizona actually struggles to score, averaging a shade over 16 points a game. Kevin Kolb's out because of a gruesome rib injury. John Skelton's back. Their loss to Buffalo seemed so similar to Kolb's heroics in week 1. Skelton leading his team to a fourth quarter comeback seemed as inevitable as Kolb fading into the sidelines if the Cards won. Feeley missed the game-winning field goal, though. Skelton threw a game-breaking INT to set up the Bills winning field goal. This game will not capture America's imagination. It will inspire jokes about John Skelton on Twitter.

New York Giants over Washington

-NFL RedZone slowed down to RG3's 70 yard run so that the viewer could see how much more talented he is compared to they, the viewer. The mild concussion recovery still seems like a load of shit, but one needn't harp on it like Mrs. Lovejoy in The Simpsons. Simmons thinks Eli could be the MVP of the league. So far, the MVP race includes Matt Ryan, Percy Harvin, and Eli Manning. Fans of STL's kicker Zuerlin probably want him included; he kicks the ball far. Sergio Ramos, of Real Madrid, kicked a 64 yard field goal at the Linc in August. Brian Baldinger was offended by it, spitefully wondering if Ramos could kick a football 65 yards during a live game. Yes, he could. Many Americans hate soccer for a myriad of reasons, but don't resort to criticizing the players' ability to kick a ball. Soccer players are really good at kicking. Let's see a NFL kicker send a cross 60 yards to an attacker's foot and have that lead to a goal.

New Orleans over Tampa Bay

-Vilma's going to play on Sunday, according to the NFL Network. A judge ordered Goodel to release the Bounty evidence. This should be interesting. The NFC South standings are sobering to look at. There are two 1-4 teams, a 2-3 team, and the 6-0 Falcons. I expect the Saints to have a better 'second half' (hey, they've had their bye). The interim coach will be back soon. Drew Brees and the offense will start to outscore teams. Freeman can't match Brees for four quarters. Freeman struggles to throw for 230 yards in a game.

Carolina over Dallas

-I think the media regards Cam Newton as fondly as Lucille Bluth regarded her son Gob. If Cam Newton throws for 300 yards and 2 TDs, and runs for 50+ yards, in a win over AMERICA'S TEAM, the media will write their stories on the game with the same facial expression as Lucille Bluth's when she closes the door on Gob after he innocently asks if she wants to spend time with him. Deadspin reported on Cam's bye week activity. Cam go-kart raced, went to the movies and haunted houses. I respect Mr. Cam Newton for indulging in such fun and not feeling guilty about it. Meanwhile, Jason Garrett will not take part in go-kart racing, unless Jerry Jones in his insanity demands they race to determine job security. Garrett's name is being thrown around as the first head coach to be fired in 2012. Baltimore gave up 30 first downs to the Cowboys, but they lost by two points. Rob Ryan's somewhere drinking whiskey on top of an iceberg, shirtless and regretful of cutting his grey locks of hair.

Baltimore over Houston

-I read a story on Don Pees' 26th ranked defense today. Pees swore to fix the problem that plagues the Ravens D. What is the exact problem, though? They can't stop the run anymore, and teams can beat them in the air. The quotes from players are rote, the type of stuff you've read year after year after year. The defense needs to 'man up' especially without Webb and Lewis. Houston just got owned by Green Bay. Both teams are 5-1. Houston hasn't been challenged until last game, and Baltimore's a PI call away from being 6-0. These 5-1 teams still need to prove their 'elite' status in the AFC. I'm really looking forward to the game.

Oakland over Jacksonville

-Some things never change: the Raiders got an extension to sell more tickets, to avoid a TV blackout. I think it'd be wise to blackout the game across America; however, Oakland fascinates me every year. I like watching their games because it's a different experience from any other NFL game. Nonsense is essentially guaranteed when Oakland is on. If Carson Palmer took the snap and then kicked it away just because he wanted to, I'd be overjoyed. I'll watch bad teams competing, which infuriates my friend STEVE because I'll opt to watch Bobcats/Pistons over Lakers/Heat.

New England over New York Jets

-Christmas Ape of Kissing Suzy Kolber wrote a terrific little thing about how the Patriots haven't been champions since 2005 (of the 2004 season) so they needn't be written about as an epic dynasty of a team any team that defeats them is lucky to have accomplished. The Patriots defense is awful. Lucky for them the New York Jets offense is mostly horrible, except for the two rare weeks they scored 35+ points. Tim Tebow might line up in the backfield on Sunday because of injuries. If he gains 16 yards on 1 carry, American sports culture will lose their minds. ESPN, Yahoo!, SI and other national sites destroyed my interest in the game and the AFC East, except for Buffalo.

Cincinnati over Pittsburgh

-James Harrison admitted he's suffered double-digit concussions. Is Harrison's admission supposed to be a surprise? Websites post Harrison's quote like it's an unexpected truth from football. I'm surprised the number isn't in the triple-digits. He's a Steeler and leads with his head on every play.

Chicago over Detroit

-Detroit's baseball team is a win away from advancing to the World Series. Baseball writers wondered how much the team's bad defense would hurt the team. Detroit underwhelmed for 3-4 months during the regular season, before 'turning it on' during the stretch and overtaking the White Sox. Detroit employs one amazing pitcher, a reliable closer, two bashers, and many role-players and are going to the World Series. The Phillies emphasize defense and pitching. Their holes in the outfield and at third are well-documented. Frandsen played a good third base during the last month of the season, but he made errors. Of course, one's more forgiving of errors when one employs Prince Fielder and Triple Crown Winner Miguel Cabrera. The point I want to make is actually about Darin Ruf because he'll be in the spotlight during spring. The dude lit the minor leagues up. He's played first base most of his career, with limited time in the outfield during the last weeks in the minors and his short stint with the big club in September. David Murphy, former Phillies beat writer for The Daily News, thinks the Phils need to play Ruf in left if he can consistently hit. The Phillies need so much more offense. If they fix the offense, the sky is their limit.

Anyway, Detroit played horribly for three quarters on Sunday. Chicago won't fall asleep during the fourth quarter if they have a ten point lead.

Last Week: 3-11
Overall: 50-41


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Originally, I titled the blog Jacob's Foot after the giant foot that Jacob inhabited in LOST. That ended. It became TV With The Foot in 2010. I wrote about a lot of TV.