Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Captain Hindsight Strikes Again!

Austen got to see his Trojan brothers face off against each
other over the weekend, and the better man definitely won.
Sorry for my absence from the internet once again this weekend. It has been a crazy fall, but an even crazier NFL season. Over the last month, the Rams have probably been the most dominant team in the NFL. That's not a misprint, that's real life. Too bad they won't make the playoffs anyway. Anyone wonder what could have been had Sam Bradford stayed healthy all year long?

Anyway, we had another fun week of football, so here is my breakdown of what happened in last week's games.

Stally's Eight Point Pick
@Green Bay over Atlanta

I had a lot of confidence in Green Bay winning, but we all know Atlanta has the offense to keep up with the Packers. However, their defense might be the worst in the league and it is going to be the reason they end up losing the worst division in the history of the NFL. I can't imagine Mike Smith lasting past midnight of December 28th (the final day of the regular season).

Austen's Eight Point Pick
@Denver over Buffalo

The Bills kept this one close, but ultimately their turnovers and run defense gave the game to the Broncos. You have to give Buffalo's defense credit for making Peyton Manning play his second worst game in his Broncos career, only after last year's Super Bowl. Doesn't this feel like the exact game you expect from the Bills? So close, yet just not enough. Just like their playoff hopes.

Stally's Seven Point Pick
@Detroit over Tampa Bay

There are so many things to like about this Lions team. I am not sure who has stepped up in their secondary, but this defense has been one of the best in the league all year long. And this is supposed to be an offensive team! If their offensive players get healthy in time for a playoff push, they could find themselves in the Super Bowl. And this is coming from a long time Lions hater. Some consistency out of Matthew Stafford would be great also, but if he cannot succeed with Calvin Johnson, Golden Tate, Joique Bell, and Reggie Bush, the Lions need to rethink Stafford's contract. 

Oh yea, who was the other team that played in this game? Ahh yes, the Bucs. They are not very good.

Austen's Seven Point Pick
Indianapolis over @Cleveland

This game is exactly why it is hard to bet against the Colts in any situation. Andrew Luck's turnovers go for two defensive touchdowns, and what does he do? He wins the game in the fourth quarter. If Matt Ryan is Matty Ice, Andrew Luck is Andy Glacier. There are not words to describe how good he is. The greatest part is that if he stops turning the ball over so much, he will be the perfect quarterbacking robot. We will get there people.

Stally's Six Point Pick
San Francisco over @Oakland

I said before the season started that the 49ers were not going to make the playoffs, but even I cannot believe that they lost to the Raiders. Jim Harbaugh did not do well in his interview for the Raiders coaching job, but I'd still put my money on that marriage happening sometime in 2015. This is all around a new low for the 49ers. On the other hand, the Raiders have something special in Derek Carr.

Austen's Six Point Pick
St. Louis over @Washington

Remember earlier when I said the Rams were the most dominant team in the NFL over the last month? Their 24-0 win over the Redskins was not even as close as the score suggests, which is saying something. I've been raving about the Rams D-line for the past two years, but their other deficiencies have covered up how good this unit is. It is good to see the team as a whole thriving together as one unit. Jeff Fisher is a great coach and it is fun to see his vision come to life for this franchise that has had a rough decade or so.

Stally's Five Point Pick
@New Orleans over Carolina

Is my unnatural confidence in the Saints rubbing off on Stally? How did he take this pick before me? He even called me out for not having more confidence in the Saints! It is so sad that Cam Newton will be out this week after his terrible car accident. This was by far his best game of the year, and the same could be said about the rest of the team. When the hell was the last time the Panthers had a running back go over 150 yards? Cam's rookie year?

Austen's Five Point Pick
New England over @San Diego

The cross country trip gave me pause about this one, but the Patriots don't tend to lose two games in a row. The Chargers are fighting for their playoff lives, but their opportunity has seemingly passed. On the other hand, I'm having a hard time seeing a team that is going to go into Foxborough and knock the Patriots out of the playoffs. 

Stally's Four Point Pick
Houston over @Jacksonville

If JJ Watt does not win league MVP this year, it finally proves that defensive players are incapable of winning the award. He is the most dominant player in the league this season and deserves the award. Hell he even has three offensive touchdowns this season. What else does this guy need to do?

Austen's Four Point Pick
Dallas over @Chicago

What is going on? Stally has more confidence than me in the Saints? I have more confidence in the Cowboys than Stally? Am I in Bizarro World? All I know is that the Bears defense is atrocious and DeMarco Murray is an absolute beast. All the Cowboys needed to do was hand him the ball to win, and they actually did it. Another sign that we are living in Bizarro World.

Stally's Three Point Pick
@Minnesota over New York-J

Geno Smith's best game of the year started with him throwing a pick six on the very first play of the game. That's about all I need to say about this game, and the Jets season in general.

Austen's Three Point Pick
Seattle over @Philadelphia

Stally has this bizarre attachment to thinking that Mark Sanchez is a good quarterback. Maybe it is because Mark's play lead to his team winning a lot of games, but he is forgetting that Mark played on the other team. The Seahawks defense is finally getting healthy just in time for a late season push. Russell Wilson is one of the best quarterbacks in the league at making a first down out of nothing. He converted at least 4-5 third down situations with over 10 yards to go in critical situations. It was only a 10 point victory for the Seahawks, but they were in control of the game pretty much from start to finish. The Seahawks biggest weakness is their special teams, which again almost cost them the game (their punter straight up dropped the snap which gave the ball to the Eagles inside the red zone, which lead to their first touchdown of the game). 

Stally's Two Point Pick
@Cincinnati over Pittsburgh

Well we both got this one wrong, at least we got the fourth quarter wrong. The Bengals took a 21-17 lead into the fourth quarter, only to get outscored 25-0 in the final 15 minutes. Ben Roethlisberger is still a top five quarterback and I do not care what anyone says. 

Austen's Two Point Pick
New York-G over @Tennessee

The Giants are a bad football team. The Titans are worse. Way, way worse. I refuse to talk any further about this game, or these teams.

Stally's One Point Pick
Baltimore over @Miami

Usually when you lose your best play to suspension (Haloti Ngata), you team might not play up to your best on the road. That was not the case in Miami. They came out flat, giving the Dolphins are early 10-0 lead. They then held the Fins to three points over three quarters. Joe Philbin needs to be fired and Ryan Tannehill needs to figure out how to hit open receivers more than 10 yards downfield. 

Austen's One Point Pick
Kansas City over @Arizona

Well this was as close and painful as both Stally and I expected, but we just simply got the winner wrong. The Chiefs have not thrown a touchdown pass to a wide receiver in a full year and that is one of the many reasons they are going to miss the playoffs despite going on a seven game winning streak at one point this season. 

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