Last weekend was not a winning weekend for Mythical Picks. But it was not disastrous either. I'm still a bit miffed by the Bucs losing to the 49ers.
I took the Bucs and gave eleven points; the Bucs only managed to score 10 points in the game so even if their defense had pitched a shutout - which
it did not - they would not have covered. That was a horrible performance. And while I'm at it, I was not particularly thrilled by the Redskins
offense putting a huge bagel up on the scoreboard for the day. I had the game 'Over 42' and the Giants obliged by scoring 36 points. All I needed
was one touchdown by the Redskins to make that work, but they showed all the offensive enthusiasm and competencies of the Easter Island monoliths. I
hope every player on the Redskins and the Bucs comes down with the most annoying case of jock itch ever.
Obviously, I hope to avoid such vagaries this week even though I will need to make the picks very early in the week with early lines and without
benefit of the injury reports. But even stipulating that optimistic note, no one should use anything here as the basis for a real wager involving
real money. That would be a dumb thing for anyone to do. In fact, it might label you as being dumb enough to amuse yourself for days on end playing
hide and seek all by yourself...
Detroit - 1.5 at Minnesota (37):
Last Week Profit/Loss Season Totals Profit/Loss
NFL ATS 5-6 - 160 47-51-2 - 910
NFL O/U 3-2 + 80 18-11 +590
NFL M/L 0-0 0 0-3 - 300
NFL Parlays 0-1 - 100 1-1 +160
NCAA ATS 2-3 - 130 13-16-1 - 460
NCAA O/U 0-0 0 2-6-1 - 460
Totals: 10-12 - 310 81-88-4 -1380
We know that Brad Johnson will be the QB for the Vikings this week. As of the time I'm making these picks,
Jeff Garcia is bruised from last week's game and is questionable for Sunday meaning we might see Joey Harrington back on the field in a road game
against a bad team. Who knows what kind of WR corps will show up with Detroit? They've spent three first round picks recently on wide receivers and
none of them has shown to be reliably present on the field let alone productive when they are actually there. Here are two teams going nowhere and
two coaches that could be looking for work at the end of the year. Since I need to make a pick here, let me take this game OVER 37.
San Diego - 6 at Jets (41):
The Jets had a week off; the Chargers have to fly across the country to play this game. Is Vinny ready to play?
That makes a big difference for the Jets considering that Brooks Bollinger is the alternative. What happens if Vinny starts and stinks? The Jets'
pass defense looks good on paper but part of that is the fact that people have run well on the Jets defense and the Chargers do have a more than
decent running back. I like San Diego here because their defense should keep the Jets bottled up. I'll take the Chargers lay the points.
Tennessee at Cleveland - 3 (38):
Tennessee lost at home last week to a not-so-good Raiders' team. The Browns lost to a certifiably awful
Texans' team in Houston last week. At what point in these rebuilding processes do these coaches decide to see what kind of team they might have with
Steve McNair and Trent Dilfer on the respective benches? That could happen at any time now since there is no real hope for either of these teams in a
playoff scenario. I do not like the Browns; I hold the Titans in only slightly higher regard. So I'll grudgingly take Tennessee here with the
Oakland at KC - 4.5 (51):
The Raiders have won two games in a row and can tie the Chiefs with a win here. The Chiefs' defense was supposed to
be a lot better this year than it was last year but the improvement has been marginal instead of miraculous. In terms of yardage surrendered, the
Chiefs rank 29th in the NFL so far this season. Having said that, Arrowhead Stadium is a tough place for a visiting team that does not play in a
disciplined and composed manner; does that seem to describe the Raiders? I'll take this game OVER 51.
Cincy - 3 at Baltimore (36):
The Bengals have to learn to play well on the road and this is an opportunity for them to take a lesson in how to
do that. The Bengals' defense is still developing and here is an offense they should be able to contain. If the Bengals can avoid giving the Ravens
a short field to play on and TDs on special teams, they should win here. I'll take the Bengals to win and cover.
Carolina - 1 at Tampa (37):
I see this as a defensive struggle. People say the Tampa QB situation is 'iffy'; I disagree. The Tampa QB
situation is most certainly a problem for the Bucs; neither of their options represents a good choice. So, I'll take the game UNDER 37.
Houston at Jax - 12.5 (37):
Houston beat a miserable Cleveland team in Houston last week. Even with that win, Houston ranks last in offense
in the NFL and is the only team averaging less than 100 yards per game passing. I haven't gone to look and see if any team has averaged less than 100
yards passing per game for a season any time since the 1940s; I doubt it. This week the Texans go on the road to play a good Jax team that should be
angry after losing to the Rams last week. The line for this game is all over the place from 12.5 to 14 points early in the week. I want Jax so I'll
take them and lay 12.5.
Atlanta - 1.5 at Miami (40):
Here we have two good defenses and two good - albeit erratic - offenses. Miami is tough at home - but not this
tough. I like the Falcons to win and cover.
Chicago - 3 'at' New Orleans (34):
The Bears are 4-3 and have allowed 24 fewer points through seven games than did the '85 Bears with Buddy
Ryan as the defensive coordinator. Granted, they have not faced an array of offensive juggernauts this year, but still... The Saints are just bad,
but one of these weekends, they are going to have a 'breakout game' and hang 35 points on somebody. Not this week. I like the Bears to win and cover
Giants – 10.5 at SF (42):
The Giants played over their heads last weekend shutting out the Redskins. The 49ers played a mile over their
head beating the Bucs. This weekend the 49ers may need to go with Cody Pickett at QB for much of the game and that means I cannot play them here.
You'll go broke if you lay double-digit points on the road as a regular thing, but I'll do it here on a mythical basis of course. I want the Giants
and I'll lay the points.
Seattle - 3.5 at Arizona (43.5):
Seattle does not travel well but Seattle is a significantly better squad. I'll take this game OVER 43.5.
Pittsburgh - 4.5 at Green Bay (41):
Here's another game with the early lines all over the place. If you like the Packers, you can find them
as high as 6 points in a couple of places. The Packers can't run the ball so they'll have to try to throw it all over the lot against the Steelers;
my guess is that will generate a couple of turnovers for the Steelers. With Roethlisberger having two sore knees, I think the Steelers run and run
and run some more. They will ram the ball down the Packers' throats here so I'll take the Steelers to win and cover.
Philly at Washington - 3 (40):
I definitely want this game OVER 40. Given the inconsistencies of both teams, I would not play the spread in
this game even for mythical money. By the way, the Eagles' defense is not playing nearly as well this year as it has for the past several years.
People focusing on their offensive 'turbulence' may not have noticed that the Eagles rank 12th in the NFC in total defense.
Indy - 3 at New England (47.5):
I'm looking back at these picks and I realize what a trend I’m bucking this week. So far this year, home
teams are winning 66% of the time; that is the highest that percentage has been in more than 30 years. I have taken seven road teams so far and I
have given points with six of them. So, why not go all the way? I'll take Indy here to win and cover.