Mikefriedrice’s Picks of the Week

Mikefriedrice’s Picks of the Week
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I am not a Robot!
Last Week: 7-3
Overall: 16-12-1

Here’s last week’s Column in case you missed it:
Long story short, we won with 6 dogs and the New Orleans pick’em. We lost on 2 favorites and the Lions as a dog when Calvin Johnson inexplicably popped up on the injury report as game time scratch. We did well enough to finally dig out of the red.

This is the first week where my power ratings reflect only data from 2013 season data, so my numbers should finally catch up a little bit to how bad normally decent teams like Pitt and the GMen are playing, as well as how much some surprise teams like SD and the Chiefs that are significantly improved from last season (San diego’s ranking specifically is making me wonder aloud if I don’t have passing offense a bit overemphasized). My numbers are also displaying how awful the Dolphins have actually been playing the past two. They gave up about 8.6 net yards per attempt to the Ravens and Saints. The offense, with all those sacks, hasn’t been too hot either.

Another surprise is I’ve got the Rams as the worst team in football! They’ve been eclipsed by the mighty Jaguars! Of course I went back and double checked my numbers against other websites. Sure enough, they are gaining about 5.6 YPA and giving up an astounding 7.9 YPA on the season. That 2.3 differential is the largest in football, plus they’ve been even worse than that over the last 2 games. Sam Bradford’s Net YPA has dropped to 4.64 per attempt over the last 2. Putrid. Even though the jags lost by 10 points to them, they outgained them by 2 yards a pass last week. Over the long haul, you just can’t win getting gashed in the passing game like that even to horrible teams. Jeff Fisher had his Nick Saban’s Drew Brees moment two years ago and they can never get that RG3 genie back into the bottle.
[Please insert Jeff fisher pic here if you think it is appropriate:]

Let me take a moment to throw a bone to the long suffering and insufferable jets fans on our wonderful website. Your team has the best pure yards per play differential in the nfl. Follow the link in you are interested:
Those numbers mean your team is playing good Jet Fan.

Power Rankings (recent games/stats are given enhanced weight)
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To the Picks!

KANSAS CITY -8- 106 @KC versus Terrel Pryor

The early bettors have been hitting Oakland. I actually have this as true line, and I hate giving all these points to a division rival – but still there is a smidge of difference between my line and the vegas line in KC’s favor so it goes up. Also weird juice there. Minus 106. WTF.

PHILADELPHIA -2½ -115 @ The Wood Choppers

TB might have the worst offense in the NFL. I have Philly by 4.5 so give the points.

BALTIMORE +3 -120 @Home versus the Green Bay Packers. +125 Ratbird Moneyline

The juice appears to say the sharps love the Ravens at home. I do to. I show this as an outright 1 point upset, I’m taking the moneyline on the ratbirds for +125.

CLEVELAND +3 -120 @Home versus the Lions

Another game where the juice says the early bettors like the Dogs. But if is actually true I wonder why the Sharps don’t wait until game time to bet when squares will pile on the Packers? I’m confused. In all events I have the Lions by 1 point so I’m taking the dog here.

CAROLINA +2 -110 @Matt Cassel’s Minnesota Vikings

This scares me. I have this as almost a true line, with just a smidge of value for Carolina. Cassel has played competently, and emotionally the Vikings might be playing for something here. On the other side of the ledger over the last 2 Carolina has had the best pass defense in football. And beyond that this whole exercise is based on the premise that I can’t possibly know what I think I know is going on in a locker room and the hearts of players and thus I should always trust the stats when they conflict with my feelings. Screw Feelings!

HOUSTON -7½ EV @Home St. Louis

St . Louis has sucked lately, see above. We all know about Houston’s problems (run defense, Shuab), but they have had one of the harder schedules in the league and the pass defense has been lights out.

BUFFALO +6 -110 @Home vs. Bengals

The Bills are seemingly getting worse and worse, but they have a great home field usually and it’s hard for Cinci to blow anyone’s doors off with that QB. I show this a as a 3 point cinci win, take the points.

TENNESSEE +12½ -110 @Seattle

That’s a lot of points, and I still feel stupid for taking them.

JACKSONVILLE +26½ -110 @Denver

See Above

ARIZONA +10 -110 @ San Fran

Both have great pass defenses and this one should be ugly old school football. I’ll happily take 10 points from a division rival. If I played under/overs I’d take the under if it broke 40 points on principle. Actually I’m calling that. Take the under 41. Parlay that if you’re feeling kind of crazy.

NEW ORLEANS +2½ -110 @NE moneyline NO +115

This was NE-3 earlier in the week. I show this as a NO upset. Hit the moneyline. NO outright +115.

WASHINGTON +5 -110 @Dallas

My numbers show this as Cowboys -5.5 so I should lay the points with the Cowboys, but God Damit I am not a robot! I can’t just ignore all emotional context. Football players have feelings, I have feelings! The boys just got their hearts ripped out on national TV after playing better, blow for blow, than the best team in the nfl last week. And how often do the cowboys play up and down according to how good or bad their competition is? Every week for the past 5 years?!? And this is a division rival coming off a bie! I can’t give 5 with the Cowboys no matter what you and your fancy numbers say! Screw the numbers! Take the Skins and the points! (plus my numbers are probably seriously messed up with the cowboys after their best passing performance in history)

NY JETS PK -110 @Home versus the Steelers

The Steelers took the foosball tables out of the practice facility this week. NY should be favored here at home by at least 2 points. It’s time to bury this corpse, JETS.

SAN DIEGO +1 -110 @Home versus Andrew Luck

I show this as an upset as well. But I’m a coward and I’m not betting against that QB on the moneyline when I can take the points.

Good luck AFCEAST!


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