Thursday night's football game had me all twisted up inside, my mind Jim Bob and weaving through different scenarios and who I thought would win. I ultimately decided to go with a 29-24 Packers win, knowing the Lions like I know how my body reacts to exotic foods. I thought it would be the Mason Crosby redemption game; after missing the game-winner three weeks ago, Crosby would make every field goal he'd attempt (five?) and the Lions would have a chance to win the game on the last possession of the game and, of course, come up short.
Yeah, that's not exactly what happened.
More Lions incompetence (with some very generous help from incompetence's striped friends) cost the Lions a game they really played well enough for 60 minutes to win and cover that 3-point underdog spread. Instead, they made the longest game-winning Hail Mary in NFL history with 0.0 seconds on the clock look incredibly easy. Why don't you just GIVE 'em the trophy? If only they had a timeout to collect themselves and/or make sure they had the right personnel on the field and make sure they were doing the right things-- oh wait!
Ugh, and just imagine pulling into the parking lot at work the next morning only to arrive coincidentally at the exact same time as the cocky co-worker who happens to be a Packers fan.
And just imagine having dinner every Sunday evening with the in-laws who are Packers fans.
Ugh. UGH. UGH!!!.
Packers (-3) over LIONS
Oh, lucky me.
BILLS (-3) over Texans
After coming close against the Chiefs last week, I expect the Bills to give their best effort for their playoff lives in front of their home crowd. The Texans have won four straight largely due to their defense and I think their offense lets them down in those. Bonus note: DeAndre Hopkins and Sammy Watkins, Clemson.
49ERS (+7) over BEARS
While the 49ers are a huge mess, I'm expecting the hangover from the Bears' win over the Packers last week to hit them harder than anything. Further, the Bears are 1-7 straight up in their last eight games and 2-7 against the spread in their last nine games at Soldier Field in December. It's December...
Bengals (-7) over BROWNS
The Browns and their fans are very self aware. I can't see this one being close at all.
Jags (+2.5) over Titans
In the last nine meetings between these teams, the Jags are 7-1-1 against the spread. Storyline: Mike Mularkey coaches the Titans for the first time against the team that fired him after one 2-14 season.
Cardinals (-5.5) over RAMS
The Cardinals will need another Johnson (David) to step up in the run game after losing Chris Johnson to a broken leg and Andre Ellington suffering from turf toe. Even on the road, the Cardinals should bounce back from a close win last week and roll in this one.
DOLPHINS (-4) over Ravens
Two teams who are having two of the more disappointing seasons in the NFL square off in South Beach. The Ravens needed a miracle to beat the Browns and the Dolphins are as unpredictable as any team in the NFL. Jarvis Landry all day, though.
Seahawks (pick) over VIKINGS
The Seahawks are 10-2 in December/January since 2012, tied for the best in the NFL. I still can't buy into the Vikings being in first place in the NFC North, so I'm predicting they'll drop with a loss here.
GIANTS (+2) over Jets
Dual home games! Giants win and the Jets fall to 0-5-1 against the spread in their last six against the Giants.
Falcons (+2) over BUCCANEERS
Atlanta's offense hasn't scored more than 21 points in almost two months, but I think they'll discover it against a familiar foe, who they typically play well against (10-3 in their last 13).
RAIDERS (+3) over Chiefs
This is the Raiders' Super Bowl of the season and it will work out better than it did for the Bills last week against the Chiefs. The Raiders are 5-2 straight up and against the spread as home dogs in their last seven. Kansas City is one of the hottest teams, if not the hottest, in football, but they struggle against quality quarterbacks, having allowed 74 points to Aaron Rodgers and Andy Dalton (yes, Andy Dalton) in losses. Derek Carr is, believe it or not, a Top 10 quarterback this season. Bonus note: During current win streak, Chiefs destroyed Chargers, Broncos and Lions, all away from home. All three teams have won each of their games since that loss to the Chiefs ... except now the Lions on Thursday night.
Broncos (-4) over CHARGERS
And then the Chargers on Sunday.
PATRIOTS (-10) over Eagles
Ha, the Eagles want to keep Chip Kelly for 2016. Goooood luck.
SAINTS (+7) over Panthers
My upset pick of the day. Yes, I think the Saints will BEAT the Panthers. Unfortunately, this probably makes Stephen Curry's prediction that the Warriors would lose before the Panthers a wrong one. (I thought it would actually be true, because I thought the Warriors would lose last night to the Raptors, and they came close, but then Steph Curry happened.)
Colts (+10) over STEELERS
The last leg in the Bengals parlay for Cincinnati to clinch a playoff spot this week. I think it happens.
Cowboys (+4.5) over REDSKINS
Kirk Cousins liked that MSU game last night, right? Right? Tony Romo out hurts the Cowboys, no doubt, but let's slow the hype on Washington.
LAST WEEK: 7-9
All-Time Record: 632-548
Scriggl in the comments with a real nice 11-4 last week to improve to a little over 50% on his picks this year.
Now your picks.