To give you some idea of how well Brooke and I are picking at the moment, let me introduce you to Jay Novacek, former Pro-Bowl tight end for the championship Dallas Cowboys. Jay picks the games every week for MSNBC without the spread. Right now, he’s plugging along at just under 60%. Meanwhile, your newly trusty gurus are picking at 71% and 68%.
What’s galling us is that in the real betting world we’re down – big – on the year, because we haven’t been smoking our own supply. No more. This week we have pledged to follow our own advice. Therefore, whatever you do, don’t bet these picks. I predict that they will knock us out of the statistical stratosphere and return equilibrium to the betting world.
We’ll still kick Novacek’s ass.
Last Week: Stefan 9-4, Brooke 10-5
Running Tally: Stefan 31-12-1, Brooke 32-15-1
Denver (-9.5, 46.5) at Kansas City
ST: In three games, Denver’s lowest total has been against Oakland, where the Silver & Black contributed 14 points to a 55 point over. Can KC contribute that much? Sure. Will the home advantage lead to an upset? No. The fans in KC, known for their noise, won’t be able to muster much enthusiasm when it’s 17-3 in the first quarter. As long as this horse is running, let’s sit on top. Take the Over straight and/or tease Denver with the Over.
BR: Cutler and crew are young and still want to prove they are who they say they are (BTW: They aren’t and more to come on this in future weeks). KC is exactly who we think they are. Take the Broncs. Leave the over alone.
Cleveland at Cincy (-3.5, 44)
ST: Both these guys are winless. All I can say is that Cincy managed a better loss last week than Cleveland has in any of its games. The Browns have exactly one sack in three games, and only a withering pass rush allowed to Giants to beat Cincy in overtime last week. Cincy lights up the Brown’s secondary and wins the pathetic Battle of Ohio. QED. I don’t know about totals here, but I like Cincy straight up.
BR: Cincy showed signs of life against NYG. The Browns are still pulling Raven cleats out of their behinds. Something tells me D Anderson wakes up in this one. Do the Brownies win? Maybe or maybe not, but the over feels very right.
Hou at Jax (-7.5, 42)
ST: Jacksonville’s longest pass completion to a wide receiver last week was 14 yards. Take the tease of Jax with the Under and have a nice nap.
BR: “How do you sneak up on a 1-2 team with high expectations?” This is the question the Texans are pondering as they face the angry Jags. “You don’t” is the answer. 7.5 is a lot of points. This is super tease country. Option one: Tease Jax w/ over. Option two: Tease Jax w/ Denver.
Cards at Jets (-1.5, 45)
ST: As a Pats fan, the only dim solace of the year has been the total suckocity of the Jets. I don’t like the Cards on the road in the East, so here’s a compromise; tease the Cards with the Over and look for them to keep it within a touchdown.
BR: Normally a west coast team coming to play an early game on the east coast is at a disadvantage, but Zona stayed on the east coast all week. I’m sure Brett is taking this challenge personally. He wants to show he is the best 50-something QB in the league. Kurt Warner wants to prove the same thing. I’ll take the Cards supporting cast in a close one.
SF at NO (-6.5, 48)
ST: No Shockey, no Colston and a good SF pass D suggest this game might just be an Under. But I hate Unders and New Orleans hasn’t shown much on the D-side. Take the Over and enjoy.
BR: NO has a lot of things to feel bad about, but putting points up is not one of them. SF is riding high on the hog. They need two more wins to call the season a success. They will get there but not this Sunday. NO and the Over as separate bets.
Minny at Tenn (-3.5, 36)
ST: It’s that half point, right? Tennessee probably wins, but by 3. The Titans have been berry, berry good to me so far, and I don’t want to abandon them now, but I think Minnesota matches up all right against these guys. Tease the Under with Buffalo.
BR: Hard to stay away from the early Against-The-Spread heroes. If the Vikes show up there will be some hard hits coming from all sides in this tilt. I think the Vikes show up and are shown up. Tenn and the Over.
Buff (-8.5) at STL (41.5)
ST: Note the tease above. Buffalo is solid in every respect and all you need to do is give them some breathing room on the points to enjoy the game.
BR: If the Bills had performed at a high level during all four quarters against Oakland last week, I would feel very nervous about this game. Instead I think they learned a lesson. Trent Green is scary on a lot of levels. First, I like him, and I wish he would hang ‘em up while he still has a piece of ‘em. The second reason is: When he gets hot he’s as good as they get. In the end, I think Marshawn and Lee Evans vault themselves to the top of a lot of statistical lists by the end of week four. Bills and the Over.
SD (-7.5) at Oak (45)
ST: This just begs for a SD/Over tease. Doesn’t 1.5 and 39 sound good?
BR: The Chargers are who the Broncos think they are. Oakland demonstrated an extreme will to lose last week in a game where everything went right for them. The two things combine for a 38-7 or 41-14 beatdown. SD.
Wash at Dallas (-11.5,46)
ST: Dallas is cruising and we should take advantage while we can. Take the Over and/or a Dallas/Over tease.
BR: The spread says it all. Vegas is predicting something between a 28-17 and 30-17 final. I think 35-14 is more likely, but it is one of the few matchups in this league that has a life of its own. I say play it safe and tease Dallas w/ the over.
Philly at Chi (no line as of Thursday)
ST: Under unless the total falls below 33. Philly to 2.5 unless Westbrook is playing and then I’d bump to 3.5.
BR: We won’t get this spread until we know what’s happening with Westbrook. Chicago has been a pleasant surprise this year. Their D is playing at a consistently high level and the O is not that bad. Philly unleashed the beast last week, and I don’t see why they would put it back in the box just yet. I see a repeat of Philly/Pitt in this one. Give me the Under and Philly if it’s a TD or less.
Balt at Pitt (-6.5, 34.5)
ST: I’m imagining the kind of game where there’s a better than 50% chance of a safety, making the score 2-0 at the end of the first quarter. Tease the Curtain with the Under.
BR: Vegas is waiting to see what’s up with Big Ben. The big question here is whether the Baltimore D can play that hard two weeks in a row. Fast Willie is out and until Pitt’s O-Line can prove it has teeth I see things getting worse before they get better in the Burg. Balt and the Under.
Stefan’s Three Teamer Steamer…Trunk: Dallas, Buffalo and Chargers
Brooke’s Super Duper three team tease: Broncs, Bills, Titans.