It's a sad day around these parts of New York. The Yankees have all been but eliminated from postseason contention. Mariano Rivera is entering his final home stand ever. And now my favorite Yankee of this generation Andy Pettitte has announced his retirement (again). That means when play begins in 2014 only one Yankee will remain from the last dynasty in Major League Baseball; Derek Jeter. Though it's not like Jeter will be a spectacle to watch either. An absolutely disaster year for him injury wise have left many wondering if he will join his fellow long time compadres off into retirement. He won't do it just yet, but the end is very much in sight for the Yankee captain.
Which means the end is in sight for my generation of Yankees. Childhood memories and stories to tell are all that will remain of this great collection of talent. What does the future hold for the Yankees? I'm not sure but anyone writing off a team that will for just the second time since the strike miss the playoffs (and the first that they didn't finish with a top 5 record in the AL) is I think a bit foolish. The Yankees will regroup, remold themselves into a title contender and be back with a vengeance; you can count on that. I will add more to this once the true final nail is struck in their coffin with a full season obituary but given the news about Pettitte I felt this all needed to be said.
Now onto the matter at hand, my Week 3 picks. It's a good thing I know how to keen in on a few games each week because outside of those picks my overall game has not been too sharp. But hey, you guys just pay me for the winners right? (Cut to everyone double checking their credit card statements that they aren't actually paying me anything).
Underdogs are continuing to do their thing in the NFL as they not only keep covering, but usually outright win; like the . Teams are too close and games are decided by just a couple plays that it only makes sense to take the teams getting points. So that is what I did this week, a bunch of underdogs. Without further ado, my Week 3 picks.
Spreads courtesy of the Vegas Super Contest. Home team in CAPS.
5. Giants +1 over PANTHERS
This is me putting my money where my mouth is. I just about how oddly confident I still felt about the Giants moving forward. Yes the first two weeks have been a disaster on merely every level. And no I don't just feel this way for the typical Giants fan way of the team doing its best when everyone counts them out. Because I don't think anyone has really counted them out. This is still a very good football team that just so happened to play probably (hopefully) its two worst games of the season in the first two weeks. The Panthers are to me what the Cowboys used to be and well, kind of still are. A team that has a lot of talent that suckers you in to thinking they are going to be good only they are flawed in the two most crucial areas: coach and quarterback. Ron Rivera is just another Wade Phillips to me; someone who cannot be a head coach. And Cam Newton is giving me odd feelings that he's another Tony Romo; loads of talent but something just missing. The Giants have a lot more of a future in 2013 than the Panthers do so their 0-2 feeds more of an urgency than the Panthers.
Giants 27 - Panthers 21
Calvin Johnson has a chance for a
day for the ages against the weak
4. Lions +2 over REDSKINS
Remember last year when everyone was waiting for the Saints to turn things around? Well I think in 2013 everyone will be waiting for the Redskins to turn things around. There has not been a more frighteningly bad team so far this season than the Redskins. They got absolutely blown out of the water by the Eagles on the opening Monday night only to watch the Chargers and Chiefs both beat the Eagles. RG3 has not played well at all; don't let his padding his stats second half numbers fool you. And the defense has been a downright disaster. This game is all set up for Calvin Johnson to just go absolutely berserk. I think two hundred yards and three scores is in play for this one. Whatever the fantasy records for a wide receiver are, I think we should be digging them out of the archives because Megatron has a chance to approach them.
Lions 34 - Redskins 24
3. BENGALS +2.5 over Packers
I like to stay consistent in my picking games; usually with some type of running thread. This here is along the lines of that. The Packers domination of the Redskins last week I believe was much more about the Redskins being bad (though of course Aaron Rodgers is fantastic anyway). This week the Packers will be reentering the orbit of NFL defenses. Think of it as the Redskins were a soft tossing lefty and now the Bengals are a flame thrower coming in out of the bullpen. Their defense is legit and will not let it appear so easy for Rodgers again. Playing ball control offense and letting AJ Green doing AJ Green things is the perfect formula for this one. If you like the Bengals, parlaying them with the under might not be such a bad idea. As much as I like the Packers, the Bengals are out to prove something this year and beating the all mighty Aaron Rodgers will send waves around the country; certainly more so than when they beat Big Ben.
Bengals 23 - Packers 21
2. Jaguars +19 over SEAHAWKS
Before you all think I've gone and lost my mind let me just reassure you that I don't think the Jags will be winning this game by any means. But let me just remind you that this is 2013 and we live in the age of parity. To me, there is no team playing in any location that should be more than 17 point favorites over anyone. The talent pool is too deep and games are swung by too many fluke plays. Let me just throw this stat at you. This is tied for the 10thlargest spread in NFL history. In the past twelve games of spreads of at least 19 points, favorites are 2-10 covering those games. Only the '76 Steelers (-27) over the Bucs and the '01 Rams (-19.5) over the Panthers have covered. In fact many of these games have been just one score contests. With the Seahawks having a pivotal Week 4 game against the Texans coming plus still reeling off their demolition on the 49ers last week, there is plenty of trap game bells going off in my head. All it takes is a couple of plays by the Jags to get this cover. 19 points is a lot; a whole lot. For you people that follow my advice, pick the Jaguars and then don't watch a second of the game. Just check back in the fourth quarter when it's a two score game and be happy.
Seahawks 27 - Jaguars 13
Despite being an upgrade, Carson
Palmer on the road is a dangerous
proposition for the Cardinals
1. SAINTS -7 over Cardinals
I thought about for a while which game to make my one pointer. Nothing else was really sticking out to me. So I just said screw it, give me my Super Bowl team. Yes they let me down last week but that was such a bizarre game with the lightening delay and everything that I can just brush that aside; plus they did win a divisional road game which is never easy. The Saints offense hasn't fully clicked into high gear these first two weeks so I think they are due for a game where Brees rewards his fantasy owners; kind of like what Aaron Rodgers did last week. Carson Palmer is capable of throwing a touchdown pass on every pass; it just so happens that there is a decent chance it's for the opposing team. If the Saints can get up early in this game and force the action against Palmer things can snowball. Can't you just see Palmer staring into space after his third interception as Brees marches the Saints down for his fourth TD pass? Mark me down for a get well game for Brees' fantasy owners.
Saints 34 - Cardinals 21
TITANS -3 over Chargers
VIKINGS -5.5 over Browns
Bills +2.5 over JETS
Buccaneers +7 over PATRIOTS
RAVENS +2.5 over TexansRams +4 over COWBOYS DOLPHINS -2.5 over Falcons
Colts +10 over 49ERS
Bears +2.5 over STEELERS Raiders +15 over BRONCOS
Last Week Super Contest: 3-2
Last Week Overall: 8-8
Super Contest Overall: 6-3-1
Season Overall: 14-17-1