NFL Football: Welcome Back + Week 1 Picks
OH MY GOD WE MADE IT. Look, I love NCAA football, LOVE IT. Last weekend was a flat out amazing cornucopia of football on my television, and whiskey in my face. Watching UGA curb stomp Clemson was the highlight, but for the most part, it was a bell to bell amazing weekend of football. This week, let’s be honest, this NCAA slate is less than inspiring, and for the first and only time I’ll say it, Chad’s right.
What that does mean is that starting with tonight, we can turn full attention to the NFL, and what promises to be a fun weekend. But you know what makes everything more fun? GAMBLING. And since I have very strict rules about hypothetically legal gambling, the NFL is where I make my hypothetical money.
No one is allowed to ask me why I don’t believe in gambling on 18-22 year olds. I think this FSU game suffices as explanation. @Chad_Floyd
— Napoleon Turnuphard (@dpalm66) August 31, 2014
And since I love football, and would love gambling if it were legal, I spend a little time each week helping you pick out the path for financial success. Hell, I even
wasted wrote a billion words on AFC and NFC over/unders. If you’ve been here for a bit, you know how it works. For all the new readers, we take each game, I make a few jokes, and I pick a winner against the spread. Glad we’re in week 1, and glad to be here to save you from a mediocre college slate, losing money on bad bets, and old people making bad Molly jokes on twitter. Home teams, as always, in bold.
Seahawks (-6) over Packers
OFF TO A GREAT START THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL. The talent level historically for the Thursday night game has been somewhere between “I’m trapped under something and can’t reach the remote” and “Eh, at least it’s technically football”, but this year it’s stepping up. Maybe it’s that sweet, sweet network TV deal with CBS. Maybe it’s just another chance to stick it to ESPN and the putrid set of Monday Night games. Either way, I just lost an evening of productivity in my week, leaving me just Tuesday nights to actually get things done around the house.
Falcons (+3) over Saints
Something new readers will learn about me and my picks: when it comes to teams I love, I have been known to be irrational. I know, I know. But, SOMEONE picked the Falcons in every game last year in the midst of the worse run in the Mike Smith era, and SOMEONE is going to be picking them in every game this year on the heels of a wholly unexciting Hard Knocks season. Forewarned is forearmed.
Vikings (+3) over Rams
St. Louis is trotting out Shaun Hill at quarterback, and Purple Jesus is looking to bounce back from a season that left most whelmed last year. Not underwhelmed, because he’s still a freak of nature, but properly whelmed. Look for a return to being overwhelmed, especially once Matt Cassel Matt Cassel’s this job away, and Teddy Bridgewater is given the keys to the offense.
Steelers (-7) over Browns
Yeah, no reason to trot out JFF with no Josh Gordon and ruin him week one. I’m sure the Browns organization wants the ruining of the rookie quarterback stretched out as long as possible.
Eagles (-11) over Jaguars
The rare week one double-digit line. Glad I can experience this with y’all. And, I’ll continue using this gif until Chip Kelly stops geniusing all over the NFL. So, forever.
Jets (-5.5) over Raiders
Here’s a fun stat: Oakland has lost 13 straight games in the eastern time zone, and the average margin of victory is 15 points. So yeah, I feel good about this bet.
Bengals (+1.5) over Ravens
I just took Ginger Dalton on the road against a divisional opponent. Glad to see I’m opening up in mid-season form. Good grief.
Bears (-7) over Bills
Funny story: EJ Manuel is going to cost Doug Marrone his job because he refuses to bench EJ no matter how not good at football he looks. THEN, Kyle “Neckbeard” Orton is going to take the reins, and parlay a decent 5 game stretch late in the year into another year as an NFL backup where ever he wants.
Texans (-3) over Washington Professional Football Team
EVERYTHING about Houston says it’s a dumpster fire and to stay away from them, but look at Washington. LOOK AT THEM. They weren’t even forgettable in the preseason, they were noteworthy in their terribleness. I know the Belichick coaching tree is basically the last year of Malaysian Air PR, but I think Bill O’Brien wins his debut. Plus, there’s no way anyone involved ever regrets building a statue of a 24 year old. No way.
Chiefs (-4) over Titans
What better way to get over the most back-breaking playoff loss in recent memory (and there have been a BUNCH in Kansas City’s history) than by picking on the Titans. That said, is the AFC South the worst division this year by far? Hell, even the NFC East has Philly dragging that division to mediocre. The Colts are going to win this division with 10 wins, and no one outside of Indianapolis will notice or care.
Patriots (-5) over Dolphins
So Welker gets popped for Molly, and his best friend who was partying with him, the GOLDEN BOY Tom Brady not only doesn’t get caught for drug use, but grows an admittedly sweet beard and laughs about it. I see you Goodell.
Bucs (-2.5) over Panthers
Wait, so letting the most proven receiving threat on your team leave (angrily, mind you), and then having your do everything quarterback hurt his ribs is a bad thing? Noted.
Niners (-5) over Cowboys
Suspensions vs. Organizational Ineptitude!
Broncos (-7.5) over Colts
Here’s the real question: what number would this have to be for you to bet against Peyton Manning at night? Like, ridiculously high right? Me too. Evil Peyton wants all the points.
Lions (-6) over Giants
There’s a lot of truth in jest, I’m just saying.
— Onion Sports Network (@OnionSports) September 3, 2014
Chargers (+3) over Cardinals
And in the super-late game no one asked for or will watch, I’ve got the Bolts. My hatred of Phillip Rivers’ face is offset by his affinity for bolo ties and my recognition that Carson Palmer is SOMEHOW STILL IN THE NFL!
That’s it folks. We made it through the offseason, and another gambling NFL season is upon us. Enjoy the games, enjoy pumpkin themed beverages, and, if gambling happens to be legal where you are, win yourself some money.
WEEK 1 BEST BETS: Eagles, Jets, Bears
Last week: 0-0
Best Bets: 0-0
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