Thursday, December 27, 2012

2012 NFL Season-Week 17 Game Predictions

Wow, how the time has quickly passed us by.  For some, (Cough, Cough) mercifully so.  But really, it seems like the hopes of every NFL city was still alive, each having a 0-0 record and a belief, like happens each and every year before the new year begins, but now, there's only one game left that truly has meaning.   Ok, there's a couple games that have seeding consideration, but the Washington/Dallas game is the only one with true implications.  I don't like either team, but I really hope Washington pulls it off and wins the division.  Part of me wants Dallas to win because I know a lot of Cowboys fans, but, I don't know, I just love how much success the rookie QB's have had this year and I guess, when you're team is brutal, you just have to tweak how you cheer.

Anyhow, hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. As for the picks, I had another pretty good week, going 11-5 in week 16, bringing my season total to 163-77 for the year.  I need to go 6-10 this year to beat last years mark, so I'm crossing my fingers.  I should be ok, but you never do know truly how things will play out in Week 17, especially with so much decided already.

On to the Picks.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta has everything locked up.  I'm expecting a limited number of plays for the Atlanta starters and a heavy does of the Tampa Bay regulars.  For this reason i think Tampa will take this game easily.  28-10

New York Jets @ Buffalo Bills

Who knows here.  I hope my Bills lose.  Kind of a December tradition around here, rooting for the better draft pick.  But the Bills have this uncanny ability to thrive under meaningless situations or when wins actually hurt you in the long run.  As for the Jets, I have no idea what team we'll see on Sunday.  With McElroy somewhat hurt, I'm expecting Sanchez to play.  Hopefully he can light things up, showing his fanbase a reason to be encouraged for next year.  Hahaha, I couldn't keep a straight face typing that.  Well.  I guess I'll take Buffalo 13-10

Baltimore Ravens @Cincinnati Bengals

Bengals are locked into the 6 seed, but the Ravens can theoretically move up in the seedings with a win.  It is unlikely though that this will happen, so I don't know what the thought process in Baltimore will be.  Nor do I presume to know what Marvin Lewis is thinking as far as his players go.  I'll take the Ravens though, for no other reason than I think I'd take them if this game was for the division.  Ravens 26-23

Chicago Bears @Detroit Lions

Bears are in a bad way right now.  Lions just want the season to end.  This will all be about Calving Johnson again.  Perhaps he can add to his record and I do believe there's another one he can get to this week as well, but not 100%.  I'm taking Detroit.  27-20

Jacksonville Jaguars @Tennessee Titans

Jaguars are done.  Titans aren't much better, but after getting humiliated last week, I would have to hope they want to end their season on a better note.  With this opponent, I think they have that opportunity.  Titans 35-17

Houston Texans @ Indianapolis Colts

Feel good story here.  Chuck Pagano back on the sidelines.  His team will be pumped up.  I'm sure they'll want this one for their coach, and not to mention, last time Indy had the chance to rest their starters going into the playoffs they did, and it cost them in the playoffs.  Yes, I know, different year, different team, but all things considered, I do think they'll want this game.  Houston will want it as well though.  They could theoretically slip down to third in the playoff standings with a loss.  I think it'll be a very difficult task to beat the Colts at home with the Pagano return, but I do think they'll pull it off.  Houston 17-14

Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings

GB could rest some players.  That is a possibility.  Minnesota has a couple of things to play for here.  With a win they are in, so that alone will keep them playing hard.  AP also has a record in his sights.  Personally I don't think he'll get it, but in any case, that is there to pay attention to.  I think the Vikings will lose, if Green Bay plays starters all the way through, but I'm not convinced they will.  Minnesota 20-14

Miami Dolphins @ New England Patriots

Miami is ending their season and the Pats could move into the second seed if other games turn out in their favor.  I don't think they'll move up, but I do think they'll win this game.  NE 31-21

Carolina Panthers @New Orleans Saints

Carolina is playing some good football lately, perhaps playing for their coach.  I don't know if the new GM will keep Rivera or want to bring his own guy in.  That is to be seen.  But I like the way the Saints have decided to play things out as well as they could, even if they've effectively reduced superstar TE Jimmy Graham to a pedestrian TE in the process.  I know they are having some line issues and with Joe Vitt they're trying to run more, but they're games were fun with Graham shredding defenses.  I think this game could honestly go either way, but I'll take the Saints at home.  34-31

Philadelphia Eagles @ NY Giants

I'm not really sure how the math works out for the Giants, but I'm assuming a win and some help could still get them in the playoffs, but I'm not positive.  The Eagles could then be facing a spoiler role here.  They also are starting Mike Vick again, most likely his last game in an Eagles uniform.  With that, I'm assuming Vick will be spectacular, as he'll likely be in audition mode, something he's done well before.  I will take the Giants though, as they Eagle defense is horrendous.  NYG 40-28

Cleveland Browns @ Pittsburgh Steelers

Another meaningless game.  I think the Steelers take this one at home, if for no other reason than for the Steeler Mystique itself.  Pittsburgh 21-10

Kansas City Chiefs @ Denver Broncos

Denver wants to keep the bye and the Chiefs have absolutely no incentive to get up for this game.  I guess they could want to play hard for their coach and GM, who are working their last game as Chiefs, but, why really, many of them will be on the team next year and a win could move them to third in the draft and a loss would all but assure them the top pick.  Denver 28-10

St. Louis Rams @ Seattle Seahawks

Seahawks are perhaps the hottest team right now and want to keep things rolling.  Rams want to finish strong but they are out and playing in Seattle, an almost impossible place to play these days.  Seattle 33-13

Arizona Cardinals @ San Francisco 49'ers

Cardinals are done and are terrible.  SF wants to go into the playoffs with some confidence and they just got manhandled by Seattle last week, so look for them to take that out on Arizona.  38-7

Oakland Raiders @ San Diego Chargers

Matt Leinart anyone?  I think he gets the start, but personally if I was a Raiders fan I'd rather see Tyrell Pryor play.  But perhaps that's just me.  I think SD will finally change coaching staffs in the offseason, but who knows, we've thought that before.  SD should win here.  34-16

Dallas Cowboys @ Washington Redskins

This is the game of the week. Hands down.  If Dallas wins they'll leapfrog the Skins and claim the division title.  With a loss Washington can still claim a wildcard spot but will then need some help from a Minnesota loss.  I do believe if Dallas loses they are out.  If this game was in Dallas I think I'd feel better about the Cowboys here, but Washington is hot and I'd love to see a Washington vs. Seattle playoff game about now, so that would most likely need a skins win here.  Do I think Dallas can win in DC?  Sure.  Do I think Washington can dominate Dallas here? Yep.  I do think this will be a game you don't want to miss and one that will be decided late though.  I'll take Washington on a RGIII rushing TD with under a minute remaining for the win.  Washington 37-31

Well, it's been fun.  I'll do some playoff picks each week, but the real work is done.  I hope you enjoyed reading my takes on each game throughout the season and like I said, I'll be doing a short piece for each playoff round and then pick things back up with Mock drafts and so forth as it gets closer to that time.  Have a great new year, thanks for following my posts.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Days of Earth and Stone

On the fields of battle, forward vision is a blur.  The only clarity comes through the reflections of the weapons we wield.  Therein, we witness the damage we've done this day.

Day or night, the darkness will distort one's truth.  Through our weapons, the carnage we've caused, shines brighter than the nightmares in each our every pause

Approaching new terrain, we will not feel the frigid air.  We will only march onwards as our directives are detailed.  If we glance within our blades, a different scene paints the fields  last known

In the end, time will claim both man and deadly steel.  Many moons will keep our victories and losses relegated to the words of passers-down.  Some day though, our remains, both bone and steel, will be found and claimed.  Many thoughts may arise, how deadly blades fare the least well of all.  They grow brittle as the ground it rests within.  Makes one wonder why the sieging every stirred, if any side truly won, such a war that only ends in dirt and stone.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

Amidst the Warmth of the Hearth, A Tree holds its presents near.

Upon a frosted morn, sleep fades as gifts await unwrapping

For all the dreams of Christmas Eve, implant an eagerness undenied

A Merry Christmas Card, Warmest Wishes Atop a Snowy Field

Lights still lit shall dim soon.  Colors shift and thoughts drift freely.  May tomorrows gold paint your dreams tonight.

As Christmas Day arrives, the children cannot wait to rush down the stairs to huddle near the family tree.  Here they will fall into a living dream, elated by all the gifts in view.  Shaking presents as groggy parents meander to, awaking swiftly as they so easily can witness the euphoria upon their sweet one's eyes and cheeks.  Thusly providing the greatest Christmas gift any parent could ever pray.

Merry Christmas to all and I hope you get everything you desire.

Anatomy of a Wavelength

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

2012 NFL Regular Season Game Predictions-Week 16

Last week was, in my opinion, a terrible week of football.  The only real saving grace was the SF-NE game, which did turn out to be pretty good.  Other than that we had some lopsided games and three shutouts, pretty boring and certainly not compelling.  Yet, as far as picking the games went, I finished 10-6 for Week 15 and now I'm sitting at 152-72 for the season.

With only two weeks left, I thought I'd dig back into the archives to see exactly what my record was last season.  I'd been saying all along that I picked near .750 last year, which, apparently my memory had a case of inflation, as my actual record last year was 168-88 or a .656 mark.  Still not bad, especially seeing I did go around to all the major sites and many of the lesser known ones as well, and I couldn't find any person with a higher winning percentage last year.

So, that all said, my goal hasn't changed.  My intention was to hit .750 and beat last years mark in the process.  Well, I did the math and where I sit right now, even if I went perfect for the last two weeks I'd be close but would not make the .750 mark. As for beating last year's mark, if the consistency I've shown all year plays out these last two weeks, I'll meet that goal.  All I have to do is go 16-16, or .500, to tie last years mark, so 17-15 to beat the .656 winning percentage from last year.  That said, I can only, at best, tie last year's mark this week, and that's with a perfect week, which I haven't had yet this year.  Ok, enough of that, onto the Week 16 picks.

Thursday Night Football

Atlanta Falcons @ Detroit Lions

Well, the TNF games this year have been pretty bad overall.  Last week's wasn't terrible, but not great either.  This week looked like it would be a prime matchup before the season started but with Detroit getting beat down by Ryan Lindley and the Arizona Cardinals last week, home or not, I can't take Detroit over an Atlanta team that beat the SB champs 34-0 in week 15. Atlanta 24-14

Sunday Games

Oakland Raiders @ Carolina Panthers

Oakland is brutal.  Carolina will run all over them.  Newton will have his way at home.  33-13

Buffalo Bills @ Miami Dolphins

Stinker of a game.  Miami has actually been playing better as of late and well, the Bills have packed it in.  That game on Sunday was pathetic and hopefully will be the last straw that needed to happen to force managements hand at some serious change for 2013.  Miami will be looking to avenge the game earlier this year in Orchard Park.  Miami wins pretty easily.  27-14

Cincinnati Bengals @ Pittsburgh Steelers

This could be a pretty good game.  Pittsburgh's been losing lately and have fallen out of the top 6 and are now staring up at Cincinnati who are currently in the playoffs with the 6th seed.  I think Pittsburgh will take this one at home though. Just a gut feeling.  27-24

Indianapolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs

Colts big.  KC is already thinking about Geno Smith and perhaps Bill Polian.  35-7

New England Patriots @ Jacksonville Jaguars

Another lopsided game and the Pats will be mad the couldn't see last week's come back pay off.  NE 50-20

New Orleans Saints @ Dallas Cowboys

I like the Cowboys here, but I like the Saints a little more.  I am impressed with how Dallas has been playing lately and as a football fan I hope this division stays tied going into next week's Dallas-Washington game.  But, I think NO pulls this one out 17-14

Washington Redskins @ Philadelphia Eagles

Lots of chatter about Philly pulling out all the stops to get up for this game.  My thought is that if they need to try and get overly motivated for a division game where they could play a big-time spoiler, well, then they have already lost.  Washington, RGIII or not.  30-21

St. Louis Rams @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs were embarrassed last week.  The Rams were too, but to a lesser degree.  TB is at home and I think they have the better team.  TB 20-13

San Diego Chargers @ New York Jets

Terrible game.  Only thing to watch out for is how McElroy fares in first ever start.  Should be Tebow though.  Man, NY is a train wreck and the only thing making this terrible Bills season not as bad.  SD 24-10

Tennessee Titans @ Green Bay Packers

Titans have been playing better lately but so have the Packers.  Tennessee can't matchup talent or coaching with GB and being at home skews the odds all the more.  GB 35-17

Minnesota Vikings @ Houston Texans

I think Houston wins easily and wraps everything up.  But, I'll be watching this one, simply to cheer on AP as he shoots for 2000 yards and a shot at the record.  Houston 34-21

Cleveland Browns @ Denver Broncos

Cleveland's played well lately, especially on defense.  But, Denver has a special thing going right now and Peyton has been pure Peyton.  And the fact Nick Saban rumblings are being tossed about can't sit too well with the guys in the visitor's locking room either.  Denver big. 41-17

Chicago Bears @ Arizona Cardinals

Chicago is in free fall mode right now.  I can't hardly criticize them though, they've been bit hard by the injury bug.  But, despite the Cards winning last week, I think this is a get well game for the Bears.  Chicago 21-9

New York Giants @ Baltimore Ravens

Interesting matchup here.  With both teams, you never really know what you're going to get until game day.  I'm taking NYG here because Baltimore seems to be falling and now WR Smith is the latest of their injuries.  NYG rebound 17-13

San Francisco 49'ers @ Seattle Seahawks

Pretty awesome game to close out the week.  Seattle is almost unbeatable at home and that's where this one is being played.  A Seattle win makes things much more interesting for both these teams going into the final week.  I just think SF is the better team and with CK at QB, they are pretty explosive offensively and even Buffalo showed a couple flairs at the end of the first half last week.  Where Ryan Fitzpatrick couldn't take advantage of Seattles CB woes, (injuries and suspensions), CK and SF will do just that in week 16.  SF 34-24

I hope everyone enjoys a great week a football, all your teams win for you and that everyone has a great Christmas.  See you next week for the last week of the regular season.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

What's This Found Lurking Behind the Madness?

The creature lurked behind the madness.  Frozen we stood behind the debris, patiently praying it had not already seen us lurking near its lair.

A mere moments that felt like years elapsed, and the creature began to fade from sight.  A few more minutes should eliminate it from our view.  We agreed not to follow. It wouldn't be wise, as what would a view of this tormenter mean if that sight would be the last we would know.  So stay in place we chose, until at least, every shadow of it was cleared from view.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Realm Where Nightmares Keep

Beyond these walls
a pristine silence
envelops the earthen field

yet within the caverns of dream
this purity bears no witness
to the ravaging of sleep's seams

Portent etchings carve the dark veil

Transportation.  To a world unknown.
One that looks enticing from beyond
bear hellfire to those within

Ominous clouds enshroud above
pathways are in absentia
forcing the feet to maneuver through

Carnage is painted by some marauding pen
Scrawling image to the scry
Infusing agony within the eyes

Skeletal remains litter the field
I dare not search the wreckage

You know they are inside
burning still
yet, what could you do
really, herein this dark reflection,
what good could come

Overstepping burnt passage
Inhaling the toxicity it seeps
the scenic reminder
will never be
the same

One day perhaps my evening visions will be pastel rabbits and clover greens, but until such a day assumes the dream, the nightmares bleed their darkened screams.

Stop by the NWCU where for this weeks Wednesday Wake Up Call, Natasha gives us a really great prompt, night time, however we may find.  So stop on over, take in the prompt and check out those who've already linked up, which, by the way, all very good.  Take it all in and if inspired, which I'm pretty sure you will be, compose your inspiration as you may, link it up for other's to enjoy.  And while you're there, take a gander at all the excellent articles and offerings within the NWCU.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

2012 NFL Week 15 Game Predictions

Well, only three more weekends left in the 2012 NFL regular season.  It is so hard to believe we're already less than a month away from the postseason.  I really hope you're favorite teams are still alive, fighting for that postseason berth, as I'll, once again, have to live vicariously through you, as my team is yet again, barring one of the largest miracles in NFL history, to sit on the outside, looking in.  And in this century, to only have a couple of meaningful Dec and Jan game is just downright pathetic.

Anyhow, I had a great week picking last weekend.  I went 13-3 and am now sitting at 142-66 for the year.  With three more weeks remaining, I'm aiming to end strong here, as my preseason goal to match or beat last years record is still clearly in sight.  So, that said, let's head into week 15.

Thursday Night Football

Cincinnati Bengals @ Philadelphia Eagles

This is actually a very interesting game.  But not for the game itself.  Last week the Bengals were ahead of Dallas for the entire game, yet lost on a last second field goal.  Contrarily, the Eagles trailed Tampa Bay the entire game yet a last second TD from Foles to Maclin gave them the last second victory. Opposites for the spectrums to be sure.  And that theme continues this week for many of the games.  Here, Cincinnati is looking to build upon their chances to make the postseason while Philly is in evaluation mode.  I think the Eagles do have a chance against Leon Hall and Company, but I think Dalton, Green and Gresham are too talented for the Eagles to contain.  Last week's drops will not continue into this week and the Bengals take this one 31-17

Sunday's Games

Green Bay Packers @ Chicago Bears

I don't even care who plays for the Bears this week.  They are so banged up it may cost them a playoff berth yet again under the current regime.  Green Bay is getting healthier and have been gaining speed ever since they started off slow. Sure they stumbled here and there, which is normal.  They'll fly into Chicago and barring a major league snowstorm they'll win easily.  GB 35-14

Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans

I kind of feel bad for Andrew Luck this week.  The Texans just got thwacked on monday night vs. the Pats and JJ Watt will be looking to vent.  The Colts line makes that a scary proposition.  I do think Luck will make his hay here but I think this game will be a laugher when it's all said and done.  Houston 42-17

Denver Broncos @ Baltimore Ravens

Ravens just fired their OC after consecutive losses and Denver is pretty darned good.  Manning seems to have a complimentary running game again, which is what the major scare was when McGahee went down, but Moreno's getting things done, so looks like the fear was a bit premature.  Baltimore is going to make the playoffs, but it's more and more looking like they may be backing themselves in.  The defense isn't what it's been, their offense has been so-so for most of the season and they have a QB in Joe Flacco that is good on most days yet does have his limitations, one of which is entirely out of his hands. That being a lack of real NFL receiving Corps.  In this game Ray Rice will have to do the heavy lifting, but when's that really not the case.  Bailey will blanket Boldin and while Torrie Smith does have the ability to get open deep, I worry that LT Oher, who's struggled this year, will not be able to provide Flacco enough time before Dumervil and Miller get to him.  That said, I do think Baltimore can win, but I find it highly doubtful.  Denver 24-10

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Miami Dolphins

Here's a stinker of a game.  The Jags have been better with Henne under center but he can't plug the running lanes up on defense, which is exactly how this teams lost the past two weeks.  Bush, Thomas and Miller will slice and dice the Jax defense all day.  Miami 24-13

Minnesota Vikings @ St. Louis Rams

Interesting game that I think can go either way.  Two pretty decent defenses.  Two QB's that have never quite lived up to their billing, granted Bradford's played well enough but has been injury prone over the course of his short career and Ponder, albeit a sophomore in the league, has actually cost his teams games this year.  Both offenses struggle and both defenses are pretty good.  That usually is a recipe for a low-scoring stinker.  Yet, sometimes the opposite occurs.  I like AP here alot, I like Chris Givens or Danny Amendola (if he plays).  I think We'll get one team into the twenties and the other will be close behind. I'll take the home team.  STL 23-20

Washington Redskins @ Cleveland Browns

Ok.  It seems as if I have to roll out the if then scenario for a third consecutive week, for those keeping track, I'm 1-1 in these type of games.  If RG III plays I'm taking the skins all day long.  If Cousins is the QB, I think it'll be a close one that a really up-and-coming Browns defense will find a flaw here and there to pull it out.  Ok.  With RGIII I go Washington 30-17, without RGIII I go Cleveland 17-14

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints

Interesting game.  I actually like the Bucs here but I don't know, this Saints team got some kind of blow this week when the suspensions on their players were overturned. That and getting embarrassed by the Giants can't be sitting well with Brees and company.  At home, under these circumstances.  I'm going to expect big games out of Freeman, Jackson, Clark and of course Doug Martin.  For the Saints I like the passing game a lot and I love Brees here.  NO 26-24

New York Giants @ Atlanta Falcons

Giants may have thumped the Saints but their still only a game ahead of Dallas and Washington, so there won't be any decreased intensity.  Atlanta has to be feeling pretty low after getting handled by Cam Newton and the Panthers last weekend, yet I question if they can handle the Giants.  I guess I'll find out this weekend, but I'm betting against Atlanta and going with NY for the 31-24 win.

Seattle Seahawks @ Buffalo Bills (In Toronto)

Interesting.  Seahawks are unbeatable at home and not so good on the road.  Buffalo just isn't very good.  But, in this game, who will be the home team in terms of the fans.  I'm thinking that many Seahawks fans may make the trip, mind you a long trip.  I just can't see the Bills winning.  I know the defense has been playing well lately, very good in fact.  The Seahawks don't have a deadly offense by any means.  Lynch is solid, Wilson makes some plays and Rice/Tate have been coming on lately but overall they are just kind of there.  The Bills probably won't be scoring too much on this elite defense though.  Fitzpatrick is Jekyll and Hyde in game and the Coach is pretty terrible calling the game.  Yeah, could the Bills win, sure, it'll hurt their draft, so they might.  Other than that though, I like Seattle here 30-13

Carolina Panthers @ San Diego Chargers

Sure the Panthers beat the Falcons and the Chargers beat the reeling Steelers.  So what.  I like the San Diego here at home against a beatable defense on an overall mediocre at best team.  SD 24-20

Detroit Lions @ Arizona Cardinals

I'm not that high on Detroit right now, but I highly doubt Arizona will correct all the bad things they've been doing the past few weeks, with the lowest point being last weekends 58-0 loss to the Seahawks.  I'm taking Detroit as a Default here.  23-13

Kansas City Chiefs @ Oakland Raiders

This is what they use to torture prisoner's of war these days.  I swear, force your prisoner to watch a quarter or so of this game and they'll be singing like a canary.  Bowe may not even play for KC.  Oakland, because they can at least move the ball at times.  16-14

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Dallas Cowboys

Steelers are reeling.  Cowboys didn't play well last week but won the game at the buzzer.  Tough game to pick.  I actually like a tie here.  But I'll go with Dallas as they're home and I like what the matchup of Romo and Bryant propose here.  Dallas 26-23 (OT)

San Francisco 49'ers @ New England Patriots

Don't you love how NE gets their most difficult two games in back to back weeks, in the cold, at home.  Funny isn't it.  Well I think it is.  And I just don't think SF can keep pace with the way the Patriots are moving the chains and killing the scoreboards.  NE 34-17

Monday Night Football

New York Jets @ Tennessee Titans

I bet ESPN is praying Tebow gets named the starter this week.  It won't happen but this game will be brutal to watch.  At least Jake Locker, Chris Johnson have some talent.  I'm going to take Tennessee to put the Jets and their fans out of their misery.  TEN 28-20

Hope you all have a great week of football. See you in week 16.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Mittens Got Claws (For Creative Tuesdays)

This week at Creative Tuesdays the theme is Mittens.  Honestly, I had no idea what I would do this week.  To be perfectly honest, I haven't had mittens since I was three or four.  I hated them.  I need my fingers to be free. I guess I made big stinks all the time, so my mother switched my over to gloves right away, and that's all I've ever had ever since.  I obviously know what mittens are and what they look like, so I started by trying to trace my hands, and it looked like a big blob, so I had to go and add the fingers.  Then I saw an old Andy Warhol painting, which as it's own, I didn't think much of it, but then, I also saw U2's Pop cover and it was similar in a way, so i thought, ok, I'll do something like that.

For the first few of these I just had the hands.  But I wanted to get the comic book strip feel in here, which, to me, meant to illustrate an advancement of the frame. So I added some movement, and somewhere in there I guess I was think about wolverine, because somehow claws seemed to pop out of the hands.  So, anyway, that's my backstory for this multi-faceted inspired piece.  

Definitely stop over to Creative Tuesdays and check out all the terrific art that is shared there.  You'll enjoy it.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Summer's Fantastical Daydream (Mystic Garden)

2012 NFL Week 14 Game Predictions

Week 13 was an interesting week of football.  There were several pretty interesting games.  Detroit's heartbreaking loss to Indianapolis, St. Louis beating SF with .26 left in overtime, Dallas over Philadelphia, where Bryce Brown continued his phenomenal play, only to fumble late again, GB pulling out a win over Minnesota despite AP's amazing day running the football and none better in my opinion than Washington's win over the Giants.

I wound up going 10-6 for the week, bringing my season total to 129-63.  If I want to beat last year's mark, which I do, I'm going to have to hit 11 or 12 wins a couple times over the course of the next four games and keep the other two around the 9 or 10 win marks.  That said, on to the picks:

Thursday Night Football

Denver Broncos @ Oakland Raiders

Raiders are terrible on defense.  Peyton Manning is shredding defenses.  I look for a lopsided game where the score doesn't necessarily tell the whole story, as I do think the Raiders should get some garbage time scoring late in this one.  Denver 34-24

Sunday Games

Baltimore Ravens @ Washington Redskins

Baltimore has a great record but they are winning ugly at points this year.  Now, one can argue that this is a mark of a great team, which I do agree, bounces do tend to go to the better teams.  Yet, I don't always think they've been the better team this year.  4th and 29 against San Diego is one and then losing to a Charlie Batch led Steeler team last week.  Washington on the other hand is getting hot late.  It's no coincidence to me that this resurgence of power is occuring right about the time RGIII got his main weapon back in Pierre Garcon.  And wow, how fun is RGIII to watch.  I think at home the Skins take this one.  Close if Suggs plays but if not, I think they'll be some separation. Washington 23-20

Dallas Cowboys @ Cincinnati Bengals

This should be a decent game to watch.  The Bengals are clicking right now, led by a defensive unit that's been downright monstrous the past month.  Dallas has a pretty bad line so it'll be interesting how they fare agains the Bengals defensive pressure this week.  I think things are slowly turning around for Dallas.  Romo's playing some great football, Dez Bryant is one of the top WR's in the NFL this past month or so and now they have their star RB DeMarco Murray back for full duties this week.  Now, he did have a full work load last week against Philadelphia but it was his first game back and I believe calls were tempered because of it.  I don't think he'll be held back anywhere this week.  I like a good game with Dallas pulling it off late.  31-27

St.Louis Rams @ Buffalo Bills

Well my Bills pulled off last weeks game against Jacksonville.  I'm not really surprised.  I expected a win, the blowout was extra.  It's tough to watch games late in the year, as I know that technically their still alive for the postseason, but it's such an small percentage I'm torn.  I want a win yet I see these games as meaningless at this point and wouldn't mind some more losses to help with draft positioning.  It's sad how it's the same story every year.  In this game, the Bills are starting two offensive lineman who have never started an NFL Game because of Injuries.  There is also a host of minor injuries to keep an eye on as well.  The weather is going to be wet and sloppy, so I think it'll be a run fest for both teams.  I just don't think Buffalo can beat the STL defense on a consistent basis, bad weather or not.  STL 17-13

Philadelphia Eagles @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Buc's at home against a bad Eagles team seems like the no brainer here but I'm going to take Philadelphia.  Have a hunch here, nothing more than that.  Philadelphia 20-17

Atlanta Falcons @ Carolina Panthers

Carolina will lose, they're a mess right now and losing to KC should be deflating enough that they'll either come out strong this week or just pack it in.  I see their leader moping on the sidelines and that shows me all I need to know.  Atlanta 28-18

Kansas City Chiefs @ Cleveland Browns

KC is not a good football team.  They are pathetic.  For them to come out and say that their LB who killed himself, after killing his girlfriend, was the motivation they needed to win against the Panthers, is really upsetting to me.  These are NFL players making a lot of money and they actually had high hopes heading into the season.  For them to need such a tragic event to offer motivation is pathetic in my book.  Cleveland on the other hand is playing sound defense and running the ball well, which sets up the occasional deep ball.  I like Cleveland big this week.  30-15

San Diego Chargers @ Pittsburgh Steelers

I'm going to have to use another Caveat this week.  Still no word as to whether Big Ben will play or not.  If he does I like Pittsburgh 33-20, if not I'll take the Chargers in a close one, say 21-20

Tennessee Titans @ Indianapolis Colts

This is going to be the best game to watch as a fan this week.  I say this because, while the NE/Hou game will be a solid all around game between two powerhouses, this game will be all offense all the time.  Both defenses are pretty bad and both offenses can move the ball.  To make matters worse, or better in this case, both teams pass defense is really, really bad.  Should be a field day out there Sunday for Andrew Luck and Jake Locker.  I like Indy at home though.  35-34

New York Jets @ Jacksonville Jaguars

I should take the Jaguars here.  Starting Sanchez probably shouldn't have been the call, but if you want to ignite your fan base to believe in him again, perhaps it was a good move.  Jax defense isn't very good, so Sanchez should have time to throw.  But he still doesn't have receivers and the ground game should come very easy for the Greene/Powell combo for the Jets.  The Jets defense isn't living up to their reputation from previous years, so I do think Jacksonville will score some points, I just have a feeling the Jets pull out the win here.  Jets 16-13

Chicago Bears @ Minnesota Vikings

Bears keep getting injury piled atop injury.  It almost makes you feel bad for them.  I still like them this week.  Teams can score on the Vikings and unless Allen and Co. can knock Cutler out of the game, I think they'll handle the Vikings.  28-17

Miami Dolphins @ San Francisco 49'ers

I don't think highly of Miami.  The niners defense is elite and I like what I've seen, for the most part, from their second year QB.  I haven't heard anything to the contrary, so I'm assuming he'll start again this week.  In which case I think he'll be able to bounce some roll-outs to the outside for some big plays.  49'ers big.  24-9

Arizona Cardinals @ Seattle Seahawks

Arizona is terrible.  Seahawks are virtually unbeatable at home.  Recipe for a Seattle victory.  19-3

New Orleans Saints @ New York Giants

Eli seems to be up one week and down the next.  Everyone's up against the Saints defense and Eli was down last week so that meshes up perfectly.  I do think the Saints will score some here, but I think NY scores much more.  34-24

Detroit Lions @ Green Bay Packers

This game could be ugly for Detroit.  They are down to Mike Thomas and Calvin Johnson.  The rest of their receivers are on IR so they'll be a lot of unkowns out there and a lot of Tony Sheffler and Pettigrew.  GB should do fine, even without Jordy Nelson.  I like a 35-24 GB win.

Monday Night

Houston Texans @ New England Patriots

Two of the best teams in the league square off.  This game has Home Field Advantage importance to it.  Neither defense stops too many offenses.  The Texans actually were really good defensively against Tennessee last week and so were the Patriots against the Dolphins. Actually, the Pats have been pretty good since Talib came over, so while I do think they'll be plenty of points to go around, and I can't wait to see JJ Watt sack Brady a few times here, I do think NE, even with all their offensive injuries, should be able to score 40 and that should certainly be enough.  NE 40-35

Hope you all have a great week of football.  See you for week 15.