2014 Quick Hitters (Week 17 NFL Picks)
It was an all-around average week last week with an 8-8 record overall, 4-3 record in moderate confidence picks and 4-4 record on the toss-up picks. Time to end the regular season with a bang in my Week 17 NFL Picks. I’m relieved that I get to spend a little more time tinkering with my picks this week because there’s no Thursday game. That gives me a chance to figure out whether a team has no motivation to play and figure out what is a rather easy playoff scenario.
*Remember that my picks are straight up (MONEYLINE) and vegas lines are merely used to determine whether I’m choosing an upset, favorite or even pick.
Here are my results on the year:
Overall Record: 157-82-1 (0.654)
Last Week’s Record: 8-8
Record in Thursday Games: 12-6
Record in Saturday Games: 1-1
Record in Sunday Games: 124-61-1
Record in Sunday Night Games: 7-9
Record in Monday Games: 13-5
Record in Upset Picks: 12-18
Record in Even Picks: 34-19
Record in Favorite Picks: 111-45-1
Record in “Toss-Up” Picks: 75-51
Record in “Moderate Confidence” Picks: 71-27
Record in “Lock of the Week” Picks: 11-4-1
*Even picks are classified as opening lines under 2.5 points.
Dallas Cowboys at Washington Redskins
Vegas Odds: Dallas (-6)
The Pick: Washington in an UPSET
Reason: If the Redskins can beat an Eagles team fighting for a playoff spot, I think they can take out a Cowboys team who doesn’t have anything to play for this weekend. Tony Romo and DeMarco Murray won’t play for long which will allow for the Redskins to have some success against an ordinary Cowboys’ defense.
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans
Vegas Odds: Indianapolis (-7.5)
The Pick: Tennessee in an UPSET
Reason: The Colts claim they will play their starters, but I don’t know for how long. All of the value will be with picking the Titans in this game because they will likely have better talent on the field. I don’t believe that the Colts’ will play Andrew Luck for very long because they would be stupid to do so.
San Diego Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs
Vegas Odds: Kansas City (-3)
The Pick: Kansas City as a FAVORITE
Reason: If the Chargers win, they’re in the playoffs. I like when San Diego wins because it’s so exciting, but I just can’t back a team that is so beat up. The Chiefs are a great home team and since they still have a shot at making the playoffs, I expect them to come out and be very energized.
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants
Vegas Odds: New York Giants (-2.5)
The Pick: Philadelphia in an UPSET
Reason: The Eagles may have given away their playoff chances, but I’m not putting all my trust in a New York Giants team who has looked abysmal at times this season. Let’s see if Chip Kelly is a professional or another head coach who let’s his emotions control the team.
New Orleans Saints at Tampa Bay Bucs
Vegas Odds: New Orleans (-4)
The Pick: New Orleans as a FAVORITE
Reason: The Saints have actually been better on the road than at home this season, so hopefully they beat a bad Bucs team in a game no one really cares about this week.
Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers
Vegas Odds: San Francisco (-4.5)
The Pick: San Francisco as a FAVORITE
Reason: This game scares me because the 49ers could just mail it in because they’re so pissed that they failed this year. However, I think veterans on this team have more pride and will take out a Cardinals team who should start their rookie quarterback to see if he’s any better than Ryan Lindley.
Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers (Sunday Night Football)
Vegas Odds: Pittsburgh (-3)
The Pick: Pittsburgh as a FAVORITE
Reason: The NFL made a huge mistake by flexing this game because both teams will likely have nothing to play for when they take the field on Sunday Night. The Broncos will likely win against the Raiders, so a first round bye will be off the table. Go ahead and fight for the division, but you’re still playing next week. I’ll take the Steelers who have been the best team in the division this year.
Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots
Vegas Odds: New England (-10.5)
The Pick: Buffalo in an UPSET
Reason: The Patriots have nothing to play for, so all of the value lies with Buffalo in this game. I would expect New England’s starters to play minimal time and for Buffalo to try to bounce back from an disheartening loss to the Oakland Raiders. Betting the Bills against the spread is also a good value here.
MODERATE CONFIDENCE PICKS`
Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens
Vegas Odds: Baltimore (-8.5)
The Pick: Baltimore as a FAVORITE
Reason: Josh Gordon was the key to beating the Ravens sorry secondary, but with the Browns suspending him because of team violations, Baltimore can now win and become big Kansas City Chiefs fans. The Ravens’ defensive front is far too good to miss out on the playoffs in my opinion.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans
Vegas Odds: Houston (-10)
The Pick: Houston as a FAVORITE
Reason: The Texans have sported the best defense, particularly passing defense, in the league over the past four or five weeks. It’s no secret that the Jaguars have a huge problem on the offensive side and likely won’t be able to move the ball. With the Texans still in the hunt for the playoffs, this is an easy one even though I don’t think they make the playoffs.
New York Jets at Miami Dolphins
Vegas Odds: Miami (-4.5)
The Pick: Miami as a FAVORITE
Reason: I’m not under the belief that either Rex Ryan or Joe Philbin is safe in their respective head coaching jobs. But Rex is the only guy who has packed it up and reportedly is ready to move on. It’s possible his guys give one last fight for him and it’s also possible they pack it in and look for the future. I’ll go with the latter because the Dolphins need to enter next year with some momentum.
Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings
Vegas Odds: Minnesota (-7)
The Pick: Minnesota as a FAVORITE
Reason: Neither of these teams have anything to play for. However, the Vikings are less of a mess than the Chicago Bears who welcome Jay Cutler back to the starting quarterback job. I’m not sure I would take the points, but I would back the Vikings as the winning team in this one.
Oakland Raiders at Denver Broncos
Vegas Odds: Denver (-14)
The Pick: Denver as a heavy FAVORITE
Reason: The Broncos can’t afford to lose their first round bye, so I expect them to come out and beat the Raiders. Oakland has been a great story of late, but they won’t be able to slow down a motivated Peyton Manning.
St. Louis Rams at Seattle Seahawks
Vegas Odds: Seattle (-13)
The Pick: Seattle as a heavy FAVORITE
Reason: The Seahawks will lock up homefield advantage with this game, so expect the hottest team in football to lay waste to the Rams.
Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers
Vegas Odds: Green Bay (-7.5)
The Pick: Green Bay as a FAVORITE
Reason: The Lions haven’t won in Green Bay forever and the Packers have yet to lose at home this season. Seems even easier when you consider that the Lions will be without starting center Domnic Raiola due to stupidity. The Packers will secure this win in order to get a bye and at least one week of homefield advantage.
LOCK OF THE WEEK PICK
Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons
Vegas Odds: Atlanta (-3)
The Pick: Atlanta as a FAVORITE
Reason: Call me crazy, but i’m going with the only de-facto playoff game in my lock of the week section. The Atlanta defense has played a little better of late and that’s all they will need to urge Julio Jones and the above-average offense to win in an exciting NFC South matchup.
Week Seventeen Pick Summary: 12 Favorites, 4 Upsets and 0 Even Picks
Let me know where you agree and disagree in week seventeen. Good luck and most importantly enjoy the games!