Friday, November 12, 2010

NFL Picks Week Ten: In Which I Forget About Thursdays

Boy those NFL Thursday night games sure do throw a wrench into things, don't they? When the NFL decided to inexplicably begin its Thursday Night Football slate two weeks before Thanksgiving, when one traditionally begins to associate Thursdays with football, the League may not have accounted for the frustrating lapses in setting fantasy football lineups and, er, weekend football picks.

And so, when everyone realized the Falcons were playing the Ravens last night about 90 minutes before kickoff, it set off a furious mad scramble around the world to make sure all the appropriate lineups were set and bye weeks had been avoided. In the case of one NFL beat writer I know, the thought of making sure Matt Ryan was starting in place of the bye-week bound Philip Rivers completely slipped their mind. And such is the nature of those newfangled Thursday games.

Yes, those of us who watched were treated to one of the most tremendous games we'd see all year, as the Ravens managed an impressive fourth-quarter comeback only to see it unravel on a stellar final minute drive that was called by Ryan's touchdown pass to Roddy White, but because it was Thursday, and with a stunningly small amount of pregame fanfare, most of us didn't notice and the whole thing felt somewhat artificial.

But at least the Falcons were wearing those totally sweet throwback uniforms. Even if they weren't their sweetest throwback uniforms being displayed here by wrestling superstar Goldberg during his brief NFL career.

So if we're going to get down to brass tacks here, I suppose I should just be open and blunt about these things. I entirely forgot to set up a list of this weekend's picks while I was recounting every painful loss I've ever witnessed as a sports fan, and the result is you all may or may not consider my pointless crusade to predict every NFL game this season entirely botched.

That would make you a nitpicky jerk, but you'd have your argument.

In any event, if you find it in your hearts to somehow forgive me for my lapse in judgment I will admit to you that I would have picked the Ravens over the Falcons to begin with anyway, and thus am willing to accept a loss on my season record because I'm just so damned honest.

At least I can take some solace, maybe, in the Giants this weekend, who have to opportunity to completely end the Cowboys' season once and for all with a 4:15 kickoff at Meadowlands Stadium. If you're looking at the line is showing today you'll notice the Giants are 14-point favorites. I'm going to pick them because the Giants have the No. 1 total defense and the No. 2 total offense in the League, I'm still riding a high from last week's 41-7 whupping of Seattle and the Cowboys haven't resembled a football team in weeks. And because I'm a homer. But I'm still kind of thrown by the fact that the Giants are 14-point favorites, which I'm fairly certain I've never seen in my life. This makes me extremely anxious and convinced they won't win, let alone cover, but such is the state of things for both of these teams.

Hopefully, my anxieties are proven ridiculous.

Last Week: 8-3-2
Season: 63-59-8 (Back over .500!)

Baltimore (Who knows?) over ATLANTA
NY GIANTS (-14) over Dallas
Detroit (+3) over BUFFALO
Minnesota (-2) over CHICAGO
NY Jets (-3) over CLEVELAND
INDIANAPOLIS (-7) over Cincinnati
Tennessee (-2) over MIAMI
TAMPA BAY (-7) over Carolina
Houston (+1) over JACKSONVILLE
Kansas City (-1) over DENVER
ARIZONA (-3) over Seattle
St. Louis (+6) over SAN FRANCISCO
New England (+5) over PITTSBURGH
WASHINGTON (+3) over Philadelphia

There it is, everyone. Enjoy the football.

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