Monday, December 31, 2012

Bracketology 1/1/13

Well, it's time for my first bracketology of the 2013 season! I know this is getting published on New Year's Eve, but it's dated 1/1 because it includes the games of 12/31. For the next few weeks, I'll publish a bracket every Monday, and sometime in late January I'll begin making a bracket on Fridays as well. The schedule will accelerate from there. The seed list snakes, meaning you can read a column down for a region. Teams in bold have auto-bids. The pairings follow the seed list.

1: Duke, Michigan, Arizona, Louisville
2: Florida, Indiana, GonzagaKansas
3: Illinois, Syracuse, Minnesota, Creighton
4: UNLV, Georgetown, North Carolina State, Butler,
5: Cincinnati, New Mexico, Ohio State, VCU,
6: Colorado, Notre Dame, Missouri, Kansas State,
7 :North Carolina, Oklahoma State, San Diego State, Michigan State
8: Kentucky, Wichita State, Temple, Wyoming,
9: Maryland, Miami (FL), Pittsburgh, Oregon
10: Colorado State, Memphis, UCLA, Wisconsin
11: Belmont, Boise State, Marquette, California,
12: Illinois-Chicago, Tennessee/Iowa State,  Murray State/Mississippi, Baylor
13: Middle Tennessee, Akron, North Dakota State, Canisius
14: Bucknell, Louisiana Tech, Davidson, George Mason
15: Harvard, Stony Brook, Weber State, UC-Irvine
16: (Stephen F Austin/Southern) (North Carolina Central/Florida Gulf Coast) UNC-Asheville, Robert Morris

Last Four In:
Murray State
Tennessee
Iowa State
Mississippi

First Four Out:
LSU
Iowa
Stanford
Seton Hall

Next Four Out:
Saint Louis
Arizona State
La Salle
Indiana State

East (Washington DC)

Lexington:
1 Duke vs. 16 (Stephen F Austin/Southern)
8 Wyoming vs. 9 Oregon
Salt Lake City:
4 Butler vs. 13 Middle Tennessee
5 Cincinnati vs. 12 Illinois-Chicago
Kansas City:
3 Creighton vs. 14 Bucknell
6 Colorado vs. 11 Belmont
Dayton:
2 Indiana vs. 15 Harvard
7 North Carolina vs. 10 Colorado State

South (Arlington)

Lexington:
1 Louisville vs. 16 Robert Morris
8 Kentucky vs. 9 Maryland
San Jose:
4 UNLV vs. 13 Canisius
5 VCU vs. 12 Baylor
Auburn Hills:
3 Illinois vs. 14 George Mason
6 Notre Dame vs. 11 California
Kansas City:
2 Kansas vs. 15 UC-Irvine
7 Michigan State vs. 10 Memphis

Midwest (Indianapolis)


Auburn Hills:
1 Michigan vs. 16 (North Carolina Central/Florida Gulf Coast)
8 Wichita State vs. 9 Miami (FL)
Philadelphia:
4 Georgetown vs. 13 Akron
5 New Mexico vs. 12 Tennessee/Iowa State
Philadelphia:
3 Syracuse vs. 14 Louisiana Tech
6 Kansas State vs. 11 Boise State
Austin:
2 Florida vs. 15 Stony Brook
7 Oklahoma State vs. 10 UCLA

West (Los Angeles)


Salt Lake City:
1 Arizona vs. 16 UNC-Asheville
8 Temple vs. 9 Pittsburgh
Austin:
4 North Carolina State vs. 13 North Dakota State
5 Ohio State vs. 12 Murray State/Mississippi
Dayton:
3 Minnesota vs. 14 Davidson
6 Missouri vs. 11 Marquette
San Jose:
2 Gonzaga vs. 15 Weber State
7 San Diego State vs. 10 Wisconsin


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Pick Tracker Update: December 27 and News+Notes

Hey guys! First of all, I'm going to address a few things about the blog:
1) I will not be doing NFL Picks this week. Week 17 has historically been an awful week for me, and the psychology of fighting for a playoff berth and resting your starters does not sit well with me. I will be making picks during the playoffs. Because this is the first year I've been doing picks in the playoffs, I'll likely tone down the units.
2) My first bracketology will go up sometime in the next week, probably New Year's Day. I'm already putting my ducks in a row with regards to making the first bracket of the year.
3) My NBA picks may or may not be making a return. I'm leaning towards bringing them back, but we'll see.

All Picks:
+$5057 (50.57 units)


NFL:
NFL Picks Week 7 2012: +$1105 (+11.05 units)
NFL Picks Week 8 2012: -$1150 (-11.5 units)
NFL Picks Week 9 2012: +$1162 (+11.62 units) 
NFL Picks Week 10 2012: +$580 (+5.8 units)
NFL Picks Week 11 2012: +$8 (+0.08 units)
NFL Picks Week 12 2012: +$129 (+1.29 units)

NFL Picks Week 13 2012: -$64 (-0.64 units)
NFL Picks Week 14 2012: +$330 (3.3 units)
NFL Picks Week 15 2012: +$220 (2.2 units)
NFL Picks Week 16 2012: +$2267 (22.67 units)

NFL 2012: +$4587 (+45.87 units)

NBA:
NBA Oct+Early Nov: -$160 (-1.6 units)
NBA Late Nov: -$45 (-0.45 units)

NBA Early Dec: +$210 (2.1 units)


NBA 2012-13: +$5 (0.05 units)
Other Sports Picks Page:
Other Sports Picks 2012: +$465 (+4.65 units)



Saturday, December 22, 2012

NFL Picks Week 16

Game 1: Atlanta @ Detroit +3.5
Saturday Night Football? Does this mean I have to clear my schedule Saturday night and Sunday night? The Falcons are coming off a home dismantling of the Giants that few people saw coming. The Lions have had close games with good teams lately (Houston and Green Bay come to mind). I'm putting 0 units on the home dog, but I'll place some units if the spread climbs.
Detroit +3.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 2: Tennessee @ Green Bay -10.5
I feel that, more than any other NFL team, the Titans have no identity. They have CJ2K, but even the Dolphins and the Bills have the perennial loser tag attached to them. As for the actual team, Tennessee is in a rut. The Packers are absolutely on fire, and this game could be crucial for playoff seeding purposes. I'll go Green Bay.
Green Bay -10.5 (1 unit) +$100
Game 3: Oakland @ Carolina -9
The Raiders won by 15 last week, and their defense did not allow Kansas City to get a first down for quite some time. However, their red zone offense stalled, bringing on five field goals. The Panthers are on a tear lately, and have proven they can blow out bad teams. I'll go Carolina for that reason.
Carolina -9 (0 units) +$0
Game 4: Buffalo @ Miami -5
The Bills really could use a new quarterback this offseason. Sadly for them, there are no really good QB prospects this year, but Geno Smith or Tyler Wilson could fly up boards. The Dolphins still have a chance to finish 8-8 if they win out, shockingly. I think of these teams as about equal. I'll lay a unit on the visitor for that reason.
Buffalo +5 (1 unit) -$110
Game 5: Cincinnati @ Pittsburgh -3
Both of these teams desperately need this game. These are likely going to be the two teams racing for the final wild card spot in the AFC. The Bengals are again proving all their doubters wrong by making a march in the direction of the playoffs under the leadership of Andy Dalton. The Steelers have looked very shaky, especially last week against Dallas where they uncharacteristically lost a big lead in a big game. Something is wrong with the Steelers, they haven't been playing normal since Roethlisberger was injured.
Cincinnati +3 (3 units) +$300
Game 6: New England @ Jacksonville +14
I have to admit, 14.5 points is a TON to lay on the road. Just imagine if this was in Foxborough. I expected this line to be 11 or so, not this high. The Patriots are, in my opinion, the best team in football. The Jaguars, however, are 2nd worst behind Kansas City. The Jaguars are in a pretty good spot, but I'm not comfortable laying units on the awful Jaguars against the steamroller Patriots.
New England -14 (0 units) -$0
Game 7: Indianapolis @ Kansas City +5
Oh my, the Vegas hates the Colts game continues! The Colts can clinch a playoff berth with a win. The Chiefs are a complete joke, which I learned the hard way last week when I had 3 units on them and they completely fell apart. They're in a position to get the #1 pick in an awful April draft class. I have a gut feeling that there's something too good to be true about this. I'm still going Indy for 2.
Indianapolis -5 (2 units) +$200
Game 8: New Orleans @ Dallas -3
Shockingly, the 6-8 Saints are still in playoff contention in a competitive NFC. They are, in my opinion, a legitimate Super Bowl contender over the next 5 years. If they manage to upgrade the horribly porous defense, they should challenge Atlanta for the NFC South. The Cowboys, are in my opinion, the imposter contender in the NFC East. I like the Saints for 2 units here, everyone is over-valuing Dallas after they beat a strange Pittsburgh team.
New Orleans +3 (2 units) +$200
Game 9: Washington @ Philadelphia +4.5
RG3 will start this game, but I can't say I'm convinced that Kirk Cousins is that much of a drop-off from him after his performance last week. The 'Skins are a charismatic team that can go places long term. However, I think the Eagles have completely mailed it in. If there's one NFL coach who would let his players mail it in, it's the incompetent Andy Reid. However, we saw how discombobulated the Steelers have been since they lost Roethlisberger, so I'm curbing this play.
Washington -4.5 (1 unit) +$100
Game 10: Saint Louis @ Tampa Bay -3
The Rams are, in my opinion, the most underrated team in the league. Before they lost to an also underrated Minnesota team last week, they had won 3 in a row. They're 2-0-1 against San Francisco and Seattle. Meanwhile, the wheels are falling off in Tampa Bay. They lost to the awful Eagles and then were pasted by the Saints. My one worry here is that Tampa is coming off a huge loss, which makes me want to curb my bet on the Rams. But Saint Louis is my favorite play this week.
Saint Louis +3 (4 units) +$400
Game 11: New York Giants @ Baltimore +2.5
Despite their pasting at the hands of Atlanta last week, I still think the Giants are one of the 6 best teams in the NFC. In the regular season, Atlanta is a complete steamroller when they want to be. Do people forget the Giants pasted Green Bay and the 49ers? The Ravens are finally coming down to where they belong on earth, and they're looking like the 5th best team in the AFC. Give me a unit on the Giants and their December magic.
New York Giants -2.5 (1 unit) -$110
Game 12: San Diego @ New York Jets -2.5
Can I throw up at this one? It's almost as bad as Kansas City vs. Oakland last week. What a joke. You have to believe that Norv Turner's days in San Diego are numbered and almost up. Ryan Matthews' complete dissapointment of a year certainly didn't help. The Jets have an extremely favorable schedule, closing the year with Arizona, Jacksonville, Tennessee, San Diego and Buffalo. Sheesh. I'll go Jets for 0, I think McElroy might be hungry for a statement.
New York Jets -2.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 13: Minnesota @ Houston -7.5
As I eluded to in the Saint Louis write-up, the Vikings are quite underrated in my mind. Ponder is a servicable quarterback, and this team reminds me of the 2011 49ers (great RB, OK QB). On the other side, the Texans are going to have some difficulty getting up for this game in between their 2 tilts against the Colts. This game just doesn't mean much to Houston, I'll lay 3 units on the visitor.
Minnesota +7.5 (3 units) +$300
Game 14: Cleveland @ Denver -11
The Browns have lost by more than 13 just once since mid-October, and that was last week to the Redskins who are on fire. The Broncos are a tough cookie to crack for me. They've been a massive winning streak since the amazing comeback against San Diego in October. They've played 3 games against other teams that have clinched their division already (New England, Houston and Atlanta) and are 0-3 in those contests. I'll lay a unit on the Browns, who I don't think should be getting 13 against anyone.
Cleveland +11 (1 unit) -$110
Game 15: Chicago @ Arizona +7
People say the Bears are falling apart and are going to finish .500, but I disagree. Look at the teams they've lost to recently: Houston, San Fran, Minnesota, Green Bay, Seattle. 4 of those within a possesion. I think they deserve to finish about 10-6. They'll win out, and I think they're going to get the #6 seed and play Green Bay in Lambeau. The Cardinals' win last week was much more about the Lions' incompetence than Arizona's competence. Chicago for 3.
Chicago -7 (3 units) +$300
Game 16: San Francisco @ Seattle -2.5
This is a playoff preview game here, and it's going to be a good one. Many people are billing San Francisco as the best team in the league, but I still think the Patriots are better. An argument can be made either way. Seattle is unbeatable at home and shaky on the road. However, it seems they may have fixed that against Chicago and Buffalo. I can't bet against either team, so I'll go with the Seahawks' home dominance.
Seattle -2.5 (0 units)

Teaser: Indianapolis -1, Washington -0.5, Chicago -1 +160 (2 units) +$320
Moneyline: Saint Louis +140 (1.5 units) +$210
Moneyline: Cincinnati +167 (1 unit) +$167

NFL Week 16: +$2267 (22.67 units)
NFL 2012: +$4587 (45.87 units)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

NFL Picks Week 15

Game 1: Cincinnati @ Philadelphia +2.5
Sorry about my lack of write-ups last week. I still did pretty good, and my phone is working again! So I can actually post this week. The Bengals are certainly very interesting, and still tied for the last playoff spot despite the shocking loss to Dallas at the last second. Nick Foles may be coming around, but Cincy needs this game.
Cincinnati -2.5 (1 unit) +$100
Game 2: Green Bay @ Chicago +2.5
I have no idea why the Packers aren't being discussed as co-favorites for the NFC. I'd say Green Bay and the Giants have the best shot at winning the conference. The Packers may have finally found a good running back in Alex Green. The Bears are possibly sliding out of the playoffs. I have no read here, so I'll go with the home dog.
Chicago +2.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 3: New York Giants @ Atlanta -1.5
I feel there's a lot of even matchups this week. Good teams are playing other good teams and bad teams are playing other bad teams. Should make 1 PM RedZone pretty entertaining! I'm shocked there isn't more action on Atlanta. Is public perception of the 11-2 Falcons that bad? The Giants are finally going on their late season tear, but I'm going to lay off the play here because Atlanta is quite solid.
New York Giants +1.5 (1 unit) -$110
Game 4: Tampa Bay @ New Orleans -3.5
Do you see my point? Almost all the games have a line within 4 or so points of -3. The Bucs are finally crashing back down to earth, just like their fellow 6-7 squad they play here. However, I think Drew Brees will go off. The Saints are playing for pride, and they're just stronger than Tampa (especially in the Superdome).
New Orleans -3.5 (2 units) +$200
Game 5: Minnesota @ Saint Louis -3
2 teams I think are really undervalued are facing off in this one. The Vikings would be in playoff position if their division wasn't so brutal, I think. The Rams are playing solid football under Sam Bradford, and they're quite capable of beating anybody. I planned on making a big play on the Rams this week until I realized who they were playing. I'll put 2 units on Minny.
Minnesota +3 (2 units) +$200
Game 6: Washington @ Cleveland -2
Well, a line has finally been posted now that RG3 has been ruled out and Kirk Cousins is starting in his place. I am going to attempt to not to pick Cousins at every opportunity, considering he was MSU's starting QB for numerous years. The Browns are playing respectable football again, but I don't think they can stop the train that is the Redskins. Even if Cousins is only serviceable, the rest of the offense is good. Gimme Skins for 3.
Washington +2 (3 units) +$300
Game 7: Jacksonville @ Miami -7.5
Jacksonville vs. Miami. Yet another stinkfest between two teams that are all but eliminated for the playoffs (well, the Jaguars ARE eliminated). The Jaguars were playing good football under Chad Henne, but have been slipping. The Dolphins have the 6-and-6 rule working against them, which is you don't lay 6 or more points on a team that will win 6 or less games. I'll put a unit on the Jags.
Jacksonville +7.5 (1 unit) -$110
Game 8: Denver @ Baltimore +3
I feel like Denver is the Super Bowl contender I know the least about. Sure, they have Manning, but I feel as if they haven't been tested lately. Baltimore's fluke of a record is finally starting to catch up with them, as Cam Cameron has been shown the door at OC. I've got no read here, the Ravens don't often lose at home.
Baltimore +3 (0 units) -$0
Game 9: Indianapolis @ Houston -10
Well, this is an interesting situation. A team that can clinch a playoff berth this week is a double digit underdog. The Colts have a lot of media hype behind them with Andrew Luck and Chuckstrong. The Texans lost last week, and they beat a solid Baltimore team into the ground the week after their first loss. Because of that, I'll limit my wager on Indy.
Indianapolis +10 (1 unit) -$110
Game 10: Carolina @ San Diego -3
The Panthers are having the sophomore slump year with Cam Newton I predicted. However, they have won 2 of their last 3 including a shocking win over Atlanta. The Chargers snapped a 7 out of 8 skid (with the one win against KC, which shouldn't count with how bad the Chiefs are) by beating Pittsburgh last week. I've got no feel for this one.
San Diego -3 (0 units) -$0
Game 11: Detroit @ Arizona +6.5
Whoa, whoa. I know Arizona has lost nine in a row, but the Lions do not deserve to be a 6.5 point road favorite against anyone in this league except maybe Jacksonville or Kansas City. The Lions also have practically every wide receiver on their roster injured. Against teams the Lions are similar to that the Cards have played (Philly, Miami, Rams twice, Buffalo, Jets) they're 4-2 against a +6.5 spread. Cards for 2.
Arizona +6.5 (2 units) +$200
Game 12: Seattle @ Buffalo +5
The Seahawks are coming off a 58-0 dominating win against Arizona. That puts a very interesting spin on this game psychologically, especially when you factor in the fact that Seattle has 2 division games after this against better teams than Buffalo. The Bills have covered +5 at home every week since September 30th, even if this one is in Toronto. I'll go 0 units on Seattle.
Seattle -5 (0 units) +$0
Game 13: Kansas City @ Oakland -3
Oh, this game has to be christened the ultimate toilet bowl. The Chiefs have actually showed signs of something besides complete incompetence over the last few weeks, but the Raiders have not. Oakland has lost 6 in a row, and they have not covered -3 at home all year (even against the likes of Jacksonville). I think KC sucks considerably less than Oakland. 3 units on the visitor.
Kansas City +3 (3 units) -$330
Game 14: Pittsburgh @ Dallas +1.5
Both of these teams desperately need this game for their playoff hopes. If the Steelers lose, they'll fall a crucial game behind Cincy in the race for the last AFC spot. If the Cowboys lose, they could fall 2 games behind the Giants for the NFC East with 2 games to play. I have no feel here, leaning towards Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh -1.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 15: San Francisco @ New England -4
Murder's row for the Patriots. Houston, now San Francisco. For the 49ers, they travel to Seattle after this one where the Seahawks are undefeated on the year. Colin Kaepernick has showed mild signs of regression, but I expect him to improve again now that the spotlight is off him. However, Brady and the Pats are the most solid, complete team in the league and have been that way for years. 2 units on the host.
New England -4 (2 units) -$220
Game 16: New York Jets @ Tennessee -1.5
And this is what we get for Monday night? Really? The overhyped Jets take on the completely identity-less Titans. Mark Sanchez is holding onto his job by the skin of his teeth in New York, and I think Rex Ryan could be out after this year. Meanwhile, the Titans have lost 5 of 6 since a promising start. I think I'll go Tennessee for no units.
Tennessee -1.5 (0 units) +$0

NFL Week 15: +$220 (2.2 units)
NFL 2012: +$2320 (23.2 units)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

NFL Picks Week 14

I couldn't write-up my picks this week cause my phone broke. Hopefully it'll be repaired soon, but here are my picks:
Washington -1.5 (2 units) +$200
Indianapolis -3.5 (3 units) +$300
Jacksonville +3 (3 units) -$330
Atlanta -3.5 (1 unit) -$110
Saint Louis +3 (3 units) +$300
Cincinnati -3 (2 units) -$220
Miami +10.5 (1 units) -$110
New York Giants -4.5 (2 units) +$200
New England -3.5 (1 unit) +$100

Total NFL Week 14: +$330
Total NFL 2012: +$2100

Saturday, December 1, 2012

NFL Picks Week 13

I was done with the first 3 games, tried to upload it and my Blogger app swallowed it into nothingness. Interesting.
Game 1: New Orleans @ Atlanta -3.5
Finally, an interesting Thursday nighter. No more Dolphins/Bills, Vikings/Buccaneers etc. The Saints are on fire, really playing well since their pitiful 0-4 start. The Falcons have a history of squeaking by at home this year against bad teams like Arizona. I like the Saints for 1.5, keeping it low because I can't get a read on Thursday games.
New Orleans +3.5 (1.5 units) -$165
Under 56 (0 units) +$0
Game 2: Seattle @ Chicago -3
Huh? How are the Bears not at least 6 to 7 point favorites? Seattle is not a good team on the road, and an elite team at home. The Bears are one of the best teams in the NFC. I think that Russell Wilson is going to start to falter on the home stretch, so I'm going with the Bears for 2.2 units because I think they're significantly better than Seattle.
Chicago -3 (2.2 units) -$242
Over 37 (0 units) +$0
Game 3: Minnesota @ Green Bay -7.5
If you're wondering why I'm wagering strange amounts like 2.2 units, check out the post I just made about bankroll
management. What used to be a 3 unit pick is now 2.2. The Vikings have proved they're likely not progressing past the Wild-card round after a drubbing from the Bears last week. The Packers aren't getting any respect after the Giants game, do people forget they killed Houston? A unit on Green Bay.
Green Bay -7.5 (1 unit) +$100
Over 47 (0 units) -$0
Game 4: San Francisco @ Saint Louis +7.5
The 49ers come into this game having declared Colin Kaepernick the starting quarterback, which I don't believe is the right move. The 49ers got on the wrong path last week when they didn't put Alex Smith in at quarterback. You need to have stability at QB, and having the inexperienced Kaepernick quarterbacking your team in the playoffs doesn't sound ideal to me. Onto this game, I'm a little hesitant to pick either side. I think the 49ers are more than 10 points better than the Rams. I'm not comfortable making a play against the Rams in this spot, who have had so much variance this year.
San Francisco -7.5 (0 units) -$0
Under 41 (0 units) +$0
Game 5: Arizona @ New York Jets -6
The Cardinals are quite a strange team to get a read on after their 4-0 start. How will they respond to traveling cross country when they're all but eliminated from the playoffs? What about the Jets, who have a split locker room? I'll place a unit on 'Zona.
Unit Change: This line has gone way up. Zona for $170.
Arizona +6 (1.7 units) +$170
Over 37 (0 units) -$0
Game 6: Carolina @ Kansas City +5.5
For the second week in a row, the Panthers are road favorites! Cam Newton looks like he finally found his stride this year against Philly last week, but them again it is the Eagles. The Chiefs showed some life as well, keeping the Denver game close. I'm going to pick the spot, not the team, and fade the bad team that's a road favorite on short rest.
Unit Change: Both sides are unbettable after the tragedy.
Carolina -5.5 (0 units) -$0
Under 41.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 7: Indianapolis @ Detroit -7
Huh? The 4-7 Lions are supposedly better than the 7-4 Colts? I understand the Colts aren't as good as their record may indicate and that the Lions may be better than theirs, but what? Andrew Luck is very solid and Vick Ballard is better than most give him credit for, and the Colts are more than a hoax. Contrarily, the Lions are undisciplined and lack a solid ground option. I'm limiting my play to 2.2 units because this seem too good to be true.
Unit Change: What on earth is going on here? Detroit by 7???
Indianapolis +7 (2.2 units) +$220
Under 51 (0 units) -$0
Game 8: Jacksonville @ Buffalo -6
Buffalo as a 5.5 point favorite? I understand this is the Jaguars, but still. The Jaguars may have finally discovered how to play football, with a win over the Titans and a close game with the Texans under their belt. The Bills are really one of the most unremarkable teams in the NFL, but they're on long rest after a Thursday nighter. I don't get this line. Jags for 3.
Jacksonville +6 (3 units) -$330
Over 41 (0 units) +$0
Game 9: New England @ Miami +7
Oh no, a huge road favorite. I hate these lines. The Pats are most definitely going to be a contender for the AFC, and they might be the leading contender right now. The Dolphins are better than most think, and could become surprise playoff contenders if they string together some W's. I don't have a read here, so I'm not going to manufacture one. My gut tells me Miami, so the Dolphins it is.
Miami +7 (0 units) +-$0
Over 51 (0 units) -$0
Game 10: Houston @ Tennessee +6
I wonder how many people are going to be teasing Houston to PK. Spoiler alert, I probably will. The Texans are probably not as good as their 10-1 record would indicate because of the soft AFC. However, they've proven that they could be a solid team for years to come (possibly more on that in a column this weekend). The Titans may be down because they're out of playoff contention. Houston for 1.7.
Houston +6 (1.7 units) +$170
Under 47.5 (0 units) +$0
Game 11: Tampa Bay @ Denver -7.5
The Bucs are a quality team, and my pick to get the 6th playoff spot in th NFC. I think that Josh Freeman can become an Alex Smith like game manager type of QB. I'm fading the Broncos, everyone has been loving them all year with Peyton, but you're not elite without a real running game. TB for 1.7.
Tampa Bay +7.5 (1.7 units) -$187
Under 50 (0 units) -$0
Game 12: Pittsburgh @ Baltimore -7.5
It's the return of the Pittsburgh fumbling circus, with fossilized ring leader Charlie Batch! However, they're playing the overrated Ravens. I don't think the Steelers can replicate their 8 fumble performance, while most people seem to have forgotten the Ravens' near losses to teams like KC. Pitt for 2.2. I'm putting a unit on the over, as I think the Pittsburgh offense will step up.
Pittsburgh +7.5 (2.2 units) +$220
Over 36.5 (1 unit) +$100
Game 13: Cleveland @ Oakland +2.5
The Browns are almost a 3 point favorite traveling to the west coast. I guess that tells you just how awful the Raiders are. Why on earth did I start Carson Palmer last week? The Brownies are starting to play respectable football, and Trent Richardson may be their franchise player of the future. However, I'm not comfortable laying units on a 3-8 team that's a solid road favorite.
Cleveland -2.5 (0 units) +$0
Under 38.5 (0 units) +$0
Game 14: Cincinnati @ San Diego +1
The Bengals are quite impressive, and they're my pick to get the 6th and final AFC playoff spot. Andy Dalton is another guy who has the potential to be a solid game manager over the next fee years. The Chargers are dysfunctional and cursed by the Norv Turner factor. I'll lay a unit on Cincy.
Cincinnati -1 (1 unit) +$100
Under 46 (0 units) +$0
Game 15: Philadelphia @ Dallas -10.5
OK, I'm about to hop on a plane and need to get this pick in. Long story short, I have no read here.
Philadelphia +10.5 (0 units) +$0
Over 48 (0 units) +$0
Game 16: New York Giants @ Washington +3

Props/Teasers/Pleasers:
Teaser: Jacksonville +12, Houston PK (2 units) -$220

NFL Picks Week 13: -$64

NBA Picks Early December

NBA Picks 2012: +$5

12/1
Philadelphia @ Chicago -6.5
I like the 76ers here, I don't think Chicago is that good and Philly is 10-6.
Philadelphia +6.5 (0.5 units) +$50

Oklahoma City @ New Orleans +8.5
The Hornets are injury-riddled, I like the Thunder here.
Oklahoma City -8.5 (0.8 units) +$80

Memphis @ San Antonio -6.5
I think that the Grizzlies are quite underrated, and I'm not sure San Antonio will be ready for this game after the recent drama surrounding the mass benchings.
Memphis +6.5 (0.8 units) +$80

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Pick Tracker Update: November 28, and Bankroll Management

OK guys, I've decided to set up a set bankroll and way I'm making my picks. Don't forget all my picks are entirely fictitious, I never actually make picks with real money. My complete and utter lack of bankroll management hasn't bitten me yet, considering all the good weeks I've been having. However, I'm going to start managing my bankroll now. Here's a quick summary:
1) My bankroll is going to be $10,000, mainly because I already have been using $100 as a unit, and 1 unit is 1% of the bankroll
2) My NBA Picks will likely be getting more units now, shifting to a 0.8/1/1.5 unit system
3) My NFL Picks will likely be getting less units now. What was once a 4 unit picks is now going to be about a 3 unit pick in how confident I feel. Here's a quick breakdown:
Used to be 1 unit pick, now 0.8
Used to be 2 unit pick, now 1.5
Used to be 3 unit pick, now 2.5
Used to be 4 unit pick, now 3
And now, I'm going to be updating my pick tracker to see how I'm doing at the end of each month. Here's my pick tracker, updated through November 28:


All Picks:
+$2234 (+22.34 units)

NFL:
NFL Picks Week 7 2012: +$1105 (+11.05 units)
NFL Picks Week 8 2012: -$1150 (-11.5 units)
NFL Picks Week 9 2012: +$1162 (+11.62 units)
NFL Picks Week 10 2012: +$580 (+5.8 units)
NFL Picks Week 11 2012: +$8 (+0.08 units)
NFL Picks Week 12 2012: +$129 (+1.29 units)

NFL 2012: +$1834 (+18.34 units)

NBA:
NBA Oct+Early Nov: -$160 (-1.6 units)
NBA Late Nov: +$95 (+0.95 units)

NBA 2012-13: -$65 (-0.65 units)

Other Sports Picks Page:
Other Sports Picks 2012: +$465 (+4.65 units)

Monday, November 26, 2012

College Football Power Ratings: Week 13

Here's my computer's top 25 for the week. I'm trying out a new wrinkle to my system which I may release an article on later this week, but I haven't implemented it yet. Eerily, my top 5 is the same as the BCS standings.
1. Notre Dame
2. Alabama
3. Georgia
4. Florida
5. Oregon
6. Oklahoma
7. South Carolina
8. Texas A&M
9. Stanford
10. LSU
11. Kansas State
12. Oklahoma State
13. Ohio State
14. Nebraska
15. Florida State
16. Clemson
17. Texas
18. Baylor
19. Oregon State
20. Michigan
21. USC
22. TCU
23. Penn State
24. UCLA
25. Vanderbilt

That's all for now!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

NFL Picks Week 12

Game 1: Detroit @ Houston +3.5
Oh, it's my favorite Thanksgiving tradition! Watching my Lions get massacred while I eat turkey and stuffing. The Lions will be missing left tackle Jeff Sackus, but Louis Delmas will be back. Both are good news for the Lions in my opinion. The Texans are having to travel on a short week after an overtime game, a recipe for disaster. I think Stafford will prove himself this year.
Detroit +3.5 (1 unit) +$100
Over 48.5 (0 units) +$0
Game 2: Washington @ Dallas -3.5
The 'Skins, in my opinion, are one of the more underrated teams in the league. They have a host of losses to good teams and none really to bad teams. Dallas is pretty underrated as well right now, this spread should not have moved 3 points after the Cleveland game. I'll take Dallas for 0.
Dallas -3.5 (0 units) -$0
Under 48 (0 units) -$0
Game 3: New England @ New York Jets +7
The Pats are on a roll, and they haven't lost since the second week of October. However, what most people are talking about is the absence of Rob Gronkowski. However, this is not nearly as big a deal as people are making it out to be. Aaron Hernandez is quite a suitable replacement (who I picked up in Fantasy!). The Jets have only one good win against Indianapolis. I'll put 2 units on NE because of the Gronk overreaction.
New England -7 (2 units) +$200
Over 48 (0 units) +$0
Game 4: Oakland @ Cincinnati -8.5
Sorry I'm getting these picks out so late this week, because of the holiday I can't do them on the train to work as usual. Going to go with some shorter write-ups because of that. Oakland has been pretty pitiful as of late, with blowout losses to Tampa Bay, Baltimore and New Orleans in their last few games. The Bengals are pretty overrated, as most people don't realize they lost to Cleveland and Miami in the not so distant past. Carson Palmer may be familiar with Cincy's system, I'll lay a unit on Oakland. I'll put half a unit on the under because neither offense is that good.
Oakland +8.5 (1 unit) -$110
Under 50 (0.5 units) +$50
Game 5: Pittsburgh @ Cleveland +1.5
As I was flipping through the Steelers' results as I research this pick, I noticed that they've had a total over 50 just once this whole year (that fluke loss to the Raiders). The Browns are actually playing respectable football as of late, with no bad losses since Buffalo in week 3. Remember how I said last week that I like picking good teams without their starting quarterback? Well, I'm still picking Pittsburgh because of that, but only for 2 units because Charlie Batch is a whole new level of suck.
Pittsburgh -1.5 (2 units) -$220
Under 34.5 (0 units) +$0
Game 6: Buffalo @ Indianapolis -3
Buffalo is a strange team to get a read on. I'd have to put them at about 35th percentile. They have close games against comparable teams (Arizona, Tennessee, Miami) and beat teams they should've beaten (Kansas City, Cleveland). However, the public is completely overreacting to Indianapolis' loss to the Pats last week. They're a solid team coming off a spread loss of 25, which is normally a good situation. I like Indy for 4.
Indianapolis -3 (4 units) +$400
Under 51 (0 units) +$0
Game 7: Denver @ Kansas City +10.5
Ouch, 10.5 point road favorite? That's no joke. The Chiefs are easily the worst team in the NFL, and it's a miracle they even beat New Orleans. The real question is whether or not the Broncos are going to show up for this game, as they have a three game cushion in the AFC West. I really don't think that they'll show up, but then again the Chiefs have Brady Quinn. I really don't like either side with this huge spread.
Kansas City +10.5 (0 units) +$0
Over 44 (0 units) -$0
Game 8: Tennessee @ Jacksonville +3.5
The psychology of this game is definitely the most interesting factor. The Titans have had two weeks to prepare for this game, and every game is crucial for them to get into the playoffs. They shouldn't be phased by being a road favorite, they've beaten bad teams on the road recently. On the other side of the coin, the Jags are likely going to be completely devastated after their heartbreaking OT loss to Houston. I'll lay 3 units on Tennessee. I'll lay half a unit on the under with Jake Locker and Chad Henne under center.
Tennessee -3.5 (3 units) -$330
Under 44.5 (0.5 units) +$50
Game 9: Minnesota @ Chicago -6.5
Well, many people said that the San Francisco and Houston games would tell us whether or not the Bears were a legit Super Bowl contender. It appears that they've been relegated to a fringe contender. Unlike the Cardinals, the Vikings have kept the surprise team label going deep into the season. However, they still have 2 games against each the Bears and the Packers as well as a game against Houston. Chicago is coming off a hectic loss and is slipping, while the Vikings have had 2 weeks to focus. I like Minny for 4 units. I'm also putting a unit on the over, as Adrian Peterson and Matt Forte are both quite good.
Unit Change: I'm halving this pick. Not liking Minny as much.
Minnesota +6.5 (2 units) -$220
Over 39 (1 unit) -$110
Game 10: Atlanta @ Tampa Bay +1.5
The Buccaneers have really done a good job debunking the "Terrible Triangle" theory I created about a month ago, with 4 straight wins. I'm sure you've probably heard this stat, but the Falcons have 1 win over a team with a winning record all year (which, I might add is the same number the Bucs have). I don't think Atlanta is 4 points better than Tampa Bay, they're pretty comparable and Atlanta has struggled recently. I like Tampa Bay for 4 units.
Tampa Bay +1.5 (4 units) +$400
Over 51 (0 units) -$0
Game 11: Seattle @ Miami +3
One thing I doubt most people realize about the Seahawks is their fascinating home/road split. They have won each of their home games and lost each of their road games with the one exception of a game at the pitiful Panthers. Miami has had about 11 days to prepare for this contest, and I think they'll be focused because they know they have to win it to make the playoffs. However, I'm not putting too much faith in Ryan Tannehill.
Miami +3 (1 unit) +$100
Over 37.5 (0 units) +$0
Game 12: Baltimore @ San Diego +1
The Chargers are still the slump sparked by the heartbreaking loss to Denver a few Mondays back. The Norv Turner factor is most definitely alive and well. I'm not sure what to think of them here. Vegas says that the Ravens are 5 points better than San Diego (translate 4 points for moving across the country) and that Denver was 5.5 points better than San Diego last week. I think that Denver is probably 4 points or so better than Baltimore, so I'll put a unit on San Diego.
San Diego +1 (1 unit) -$110
Under 47 (0 units) +$0
Game 13: San Francisco @ New Orleans +1
This game immediately stuck out at me when I looked at the lines on Tuesday, because of Colin Kaepernick. I am floored that the Saints are getting more action than the 49ers considering the way Kaepernick played on Monday Night against a stellar Bears defense. However, he has to play in the Superdome this time against a rejuvenated Saints team. Call me a bandwagoner, but I think the 49ers may be the best teams in the NFC. I'll curb my play to 2 units because of the unfamiliarity.
San Francisco -1 (2 units) +$200
Under 49.5 (0 units) -$0
Game 14: Saint Louis @ Arizona -1.5
OK, hold up. A team with Ryan Lindell as their starting quarterback is favored? Oh wait, Ryan Lindley, but same difference. The Rams are not so pitiful that a 3rd string quarterback on a team that has lost 6 in a row should be favored against them. The Rams aren't doing so hot either aside from the tie with the 49ers, but I'm going with Saint Louis for 4 units. These teams are about equal with their starting quarterbacks in.
Saint Louis +1.5 (4 units) +$400
Under 37 (0 units) -$0
Game 15: Green Bay @ New York Giants -3
The Packers are on fire and have at least pushed +3 nine weeks in a row. That row of nine teams includes the like of the Texans, Seahawks, Bears, Colts and the Lions. Pretty impressive. I think that the Packers and the 49ers are the 2 best teams in the NFC. The big question here is whether the Giants will start their late season surge now, or in a week or two. I'm going to guess they still have a little bit before the surge considering that they're 1.5 up in the East. GB for 2.
Green Bay +3 (2 units) -$220
Under 51 (0 units) +$0
Game 16: Carolina @ Philadelphia +3
Oh my, who scheduled this stinkfest for Monday Night Football? The Eagles have been the definition of pitiful ever since those lucky opening wins, and Michael Vick is out and Nick Foles is starting. Normally this would help the Eagles' case, but Foles has looked awful. I'm not comfortable betting the Panthers as road favorites, but I think they're the right side here. I'm staying away with a 10-foot pole.
Carolina -3 (0 units) +$0
Under 40.5 (0 units) -$0

Props/Teasers/Pleasers:
Teaser: Tennessee +2.5, Indianapolis +3 (2.5 units) -$275
Moneyline: Oakland +345 (0.6 units) -$66
Pleaser: Saint Louis -4.5, Green Bay -3 (Ties win) +550 (1 unit) -$110

NFL Picks Week 12: +$129
NFL Picks 2012: +$1834

Monday, November 19, 2012

College Football Power Ratings Week 12

And Notre Dame steals the number one spot from the Tide! The Tide lost the customary 5% of their rating for playing an FCS squad, and Notre Dame took 100% of the pot against Wake Forest, leading to the takeover at #1. Here's my computer's top 25:
1. Notre Dame 131
2. Alabama 129
3. Georgia 119
4. Oklahoma 108
5. Florida 106
6. Oregon 101
7. Florida State 95
8. South Carolina 95
9. Texas 94
10. Clemson 93
11. LSU 93
12. Kansas State 91
13. Oklahoma State 90
14. Texas A&M 90
15. Nebraska 88
16. Ohio State 87
17. Stanford 83
18. Oregon State 79
19. Rutgers 76
20. UCLA 75
21. Baylor 73
22. USC 72
23. Michigan 68
24. Penn State 62
25. Wisconsin 62

That's all for now!

Friday, November 16, 2012

NBA Picks Late November

NBA Picks 2012-13: -$205
11/29
Phoenix @ Toronto -3
Overreaction to the Suns' loss yesterday.
Phoenix +3 (0.5 units) -$55
Brooklyn @ Orlando +4.5
The Nets remain underrated, somehow.
Brooklyn -4.5 (0.8 units) +$80
11/28
Portland @ Washington +3
I will continue to fade the god-awful Wizards.
Portland -3 (1 unit) -$110
Phoenix @ Detroit -3.5
The Suns are far better than people give them credit for.
Pheonix +3.5 (0.5 units) -$55

11/27
I'm going to be making picks of either 0.5, 0.8 or 1 units for the foreseeable future. I'm developing a system.
Toronto @ Houston -6
The Rockets have made a believer out of me.
Houston -6 (0.8 units) +$80


11/26
Considered the Spurs, but I got no play tonight.

11/25
I'm going to be generally placing more units now as I'm getting a feel for NBA lines.
San Antonio @ Toronto +6
The Spurs are quite underrated, the Raptors are not within 9 points of an elite team.
San Antonio -6 (0.5 units) -$55

11/24
Charlotte @ Washington -4.5
Why on earth is Vegas saying that the winless Wizards are better than the respectable Bobcats?
Charlotte +4.5 (0.5 units) +$50
Utah @ Sacramento +1.5
The Kings are still about even with the Jazz.
Sacramento +1.5 (0.5 units) +$50

11/23
No games yesterday on Thanksgiving, but got some picks today.
Golden State @ Denver -7
What's with all the Nuggets love?
Golden State +7 (0.5 units) -$55
Los Angeles Lakers @ Memphis -4.5
The Lakers are not that good, new coach or old coach.
Memphis -4.5 (0.5 units) +$50
Sacramento @ Utah -9
The Jazz have covered -9 twice this year.
Sacramento +9 (0.5 units) +$50

11/21
San Antonio @ Boston +1.5
I like the Spurs for a small play against overrated Boston.
San Antonio -1.5 (1 unit) +$100
Chicago @ Houston -1
And can someone tell me why Chicago is a dog to Houston with Harden questionable?
Chicago +1 (1 unit) -$110
New York @ Dallas +2.5
The Knicks are quite good, Dallas has no Nowitzki.
New York -2.5 (.5 units) -$55
Brooklyn @ Golden State -2
This is an overreaction to Brooklyn's loss at the hands of the Lakers.
Brooklyn +2 (1 unit) -$110

11/20
No reads on anything tonight.

11/17
Golden State @ Oklahoma City -10
I'm not sure the Thunder will dominate a game against a solid opponent.
Golden State +10 (0.5 units) +-$0

11/16
Switching over to a new post because we've passed the middle of the month.
New York @ Memphis -6
Both of these teams have played very well so far, but I think Memphis is the better team with more impressive wins.
Memphis -6 (1 unit) +$100

Monday, November 12, 2012

The New Developments on the College Football Playoffs... and How it Would Shake Out This Year

Well, in case you haven't seen the bombshell article on ESPN, new details have come out about the way the new college football playoff will work starting in 2014. Here's what's I said wasn't going to happen that is:
1) The Rose and Sugar Bowls WILL take part in the semi-final rotation just like the other 6 bowls
2) There will be NO 7th bowl game
3) The highest ranked "Group of 5" champion will get an AUTOMATIC BID to one of the 6 semi's
4) No Group of 5 team can play in the Rose/Sugar/Orange Bowls unless it's in a semi-final
Here's what we still don't know:
1) Where the first national championship game will be. Atlanta? Tampa? Dallas? Houston? All those names and more have been thrown out there.
2) Which 3 bowls will be the "access bowls". The Fiesta, Peach and Cotton are the early leaders as I suggested.
So, here's how I think it would shake out if the season ended today. I'm going to assume the following semi-final rotation for my purposes:
2012: Orange, Cotton
2013: Rose, Peach
2014: Fiesta, Sugar
I'm using the at-large selection order of Fiesta, Peach.
Orange (semi #1): 2 Oregon vs. 3 Notre Dame
Cotton (semi #2): 1 Kansas State vs. 4 Alabama
Rose: 13 Stanford vs. 14 Nebraska
Sugar: 5 Georgia vs. 12 Oklahoma
Fiesta: 6 Florida vs. 11 Clemson
Peach: 10 Florida State vs. 20 Louisiana Tech

That's all for now!

NFL Picks Week 11

Quite a solid week at +$580. Solid chunk of change there. The Atlanta game was beyond stressful. How do you not convert when you have 1st and goal when you're undefeated. Uggh. I'm gonna stop the 0.5 on all O/U because it's silly in retrospect. Here we go...
Game 1: Miami @ Buffalo -1
Before we start, I'd like to point out that there was no line I saw and instantly thought "that's a big pick". I had that with Atlanta an Tennessee last week. Back to this game, the Dolphins are coming off a blowout loss to the aforementioned Titans. I normally like picking teams that just got blown out (like the Titans last week!) but the Dolphins should not be considered better than Buffalo by 2 points. I'm not sure the Bills will be up for this game after the heartbreaker against New England. 1 on the Bills.
Unit Change: OK, I've been awful on Thursday Nights this year. But I'll bump this play up.
Buffalo -1 (2 units) +$200
Under 45 (0 units) +$0

Game 2: Philadelphia @ Washington -3.5
Well, maybe I lied. I did have a clear idea who to pick when I saw this line. The Eagles are coming off a complete demolition at the hands of the Cowboys (ouch!) while the Skins will be focused after the bye. Meanwhile, Michael Vick could be out for this contest, and the spread will inflate if he is. I'll probably reduce this play in that case.
Unit Change: I'm dropping this to 2 units cause the spread rose over 3.
Washington -3.5 (2 units) +$200
Over 45 (0 units) -$0

Game 3: Green Bay @ Detroit +3
Hurrah! My Lions don't have to get demolished by Green Bay on Thanksgiving this year. Instead, we get to be demolished by Houston! Th Lions have a ridiculous schedule this year. Green Bay twice, Chicago twice, Atlanta, Houston etc. Anyways, the Packers should be favored by about 6 here IMO. They'll be up for this non-conference tilt. I'm limiting my wager on them because the Lions have shown flashes of brilliance this year.
Green Bay -3 (2 units) +$200
Under 52.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 4: Arizona @ Atlanta -9.5
The most interesting aspect of this game, in my opinion, is the psychology on Atlanta's side. Whether or not they're up for this game will be a good indicator of how the rest of the year will go for them. Arizona has dropped 5 straight since their undefeated start, and are starting to play like the Cardinals again. The Falcons probably should not be 10 point favorites here, but I have no confidence in the Cards' offense.
Unit Change: I'll put half a unit on the over in this contest, both these teams have solid offenses.
Arizona +9.5 (0 units) +$0
Over 43.5 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 5: Tampa Bay @ Carolina +1
This one jumped out to me as a game to watch when looking at the spreads this week. Carolina was one of my favorite teams to pick (see WAS/CAR write-up) but my reason for picking them went out the window against Denver. On the other hand, Tampa has been on fire as of late. I'll put 2 units on the Panthers, as I'm not sure the Bucs will respond well to being road favorites.
Carolina +1 (2 units) -$220
Over 47.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 6: Cleveland @ Dallas -7.5
Dallas? As a favorite of more than a touchdown? Wow. Cleveland is not that bad, Trent Richardson is learning the NFL and making the Browns significantly better in the process. Everybody and their mother is overreacting to Dallas' win over an even more awful Eagles side. This line is over the key number of 7, I'll lay 3 units on the visitor.
Cleveland +7 (3 units) +$300
Over 43.5 (0 units) -$0

Game 7: New York Jets @ Saint Louis -3.5
This is quite an interesting matchup for a number of reasons. First of all, a Jets blowout loss could lead to Tebow becoming the starting QB (despite what Herm Edwards might say). Additionally, we have the psychology factor on both sides. How will the Rams respond after their tie? Will the Jets realize this is a key game or will they wilt in a second game out west? There's too many variables here for me to wager.
New York Jets +3.5 (0 units) +$0
Under 38.5 (0 units) -$0

Game 8: Indianapolis @ New England -10
I have a feeling that this could be a statement game for Andrew Luck and the Colts. With a win here, he'll have slayed the dragon of the AFC in Foxborough. You've got to believe he'll play for that. The Patriots may ease up over the next two weeks before their annual late-season push. Also, why is this game important for New England? They're many games up in the AFC East. Colts for 3.
Indianapolis +10 (3 units) -$330
Under 54 (0 units) -$0

Game 9: Jacksonville @ Houston -15.5
16 points!!! I immediately knew how I was betting this game when I saw this line, but I'll get to that in a second. Jacksonville has been in a similar situation this year against the Packers in Green Bay. Houston, however, has not. I'm putting 0 units here.
Jacksonville +15.5 (0 units) +$0
Under 40.5 (0 units) -$0

Game 10: Cincinnati @ Kansas City +3
Well, we've got 2 teams coming off nice performances. The Bengals squashed the Giants in Cincy last week, while the Chiefs held a lead an took the Steelers to overtime in Pittsburgh. The Chiefs should be very invigorated for this contest, but that's not the main reason I'm laying 4 units on them. The Bengals are in a unfamiliar spot as a road favorite, and they've been quite awful aside from that Giants game.
Unit Change: I'm starting to feel uncomfortable about the Chiefs playing sluggishly after the Monday Night loss. Dropping this to 3.
Unit Change: Spread has dropped to 3, dropping the pick to 2.
Kansas City +3 (2 units) -$220
Over 42.5 (0 units) -$0

Game 11: New Orleans @ Oakland +5
New Orleans as a 5 point road favorite??? Oh my. Then again, it is against an awful Raiders team. Can Brees and company finally reach .500? Honestly, the main reason I'll be paying attention to this game is because I picked up Carson Palmer in my fantasy league because Big Ben is injured and Tony Romo sucks. I have no read here.
Unit Change: OK, both these teams have OK offenses, but 55 for the O/U? Yeesh. I'll put a unit on the under.
Oakland +5 (0 units) -$0
Under 55.5 (1 unit) +$100

Game 12: San Diego @ Denver -8
Whenever my dad talks about the Chargers, the first words out of his mouth are always "the Norv Turner factor". It seems the Norv Turner factor has taken full control of the Chargers, sending them spiraling. At 3-6, they likely have to win out to make the playoffs. The Broncos are playing quite well, but I'm not sure they'll be up for this contest when they're way up in the division, so I'll curb my wager.
Denver -8 (2 units) -$220
Over 48 (0 units) +$0

Game 13: Baltimore @ Pittsburgh +3
The major storyline here, obviously, is the injury to Ben Roethlisberger. In fact, the injury to Big Ben is one of the main reasons I like Pittsburgh. I don't think a slightly above average quarterback should induce a 6-point swing in the line. The Steelers have covered +3.5 in every game since week 1, while the Ravens have been sluggish as of late (HOU, KC). The only reason I'm not placing 4 on Pittsburgh is because Byron Leftwich is a below average backup.
Unit Change: C'mon, these defenses aren't that good. Half a unit on over 40.
Pittsburgh +3 (3 units) +-$0
Over 40 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 14: Chicago @ San Francisco -3.5
Really short on time, but don't have a read on either side, so not going to type something up. However, even sans starting QB's, an O/U of 34 is ridiculous. Gimme a unit on the over.
Chicago +3.5 (0 units) -$0
Over 34 (1 unit) +$100

Pleasers/Teasers/Parlays:
Moneyline: Cleveland +300 (1 unit) -$110
Moneyline: New York Jets +164 (0.5 units) +$82

NFL Picks Week 11: +$8
NFL Picks 2012: +$1705

Sunday, November 11, 2012

College Football Power Ratings Week 11

Here's my computer's top 25 thorugh Week 11. Alabama is still #1, but their lead shrunk a ton. Rounding off scores to the nearest whole number.

1. Alabama 139
2. Georgia 128
3. Notre Dame 124
4. Florida 115
5. Oklahoma 114
6. Kansas State 110
7. Oregon 107
8. South Carolina 103
9. Texas A&M 97
10. LSU 97
11. Florida State 95
12. Texas 94
13. Clemson 91
14. Nebraska 86
15. Ohio State 84
16. USC 83
17. Oklahoma State 83
18. Oregon State 77
19. Stanford 77
20. Rutgers 70
21. BYU 68
22. Wisconsin 65
23. Michigan 65
24. UCLA 64
25. UCF 62


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

NFL Picks Week 10

Last Update: Noon Eastern Sunday (Updated spreads, ATL/NO unit change)

+$1162! That's what I call a nice week. I'm putting .5 units on all my O/U picks after how well they did last week.

Game 1: Indianapolis @ Jacksonville +3
The Colts are surprising everyone, including myself. How on earth are they 5-3 without their coach? Andrew Luck is playing like the clear-cut #1 pick he is. The Jaguars have been certifiably awful, suffering a home blowout to the mediocre Lions last week. I'm treating this as a not quite as awesome version of the Baltimore game last week.
Indianapolis -3 (2 units) +$200
Over 42.5 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 2: Buffalo @ New England -13.5

I guess Ryan Lindell must have had some money on Houston, eh? In case you're confused, the Bills kicker missed a 35 yard field goal way wide late so the Bills lost by 12 (the spread was 10.5). The Pats are coming off a bye and a big win in London. I'll place 2 units on the host.
Unit Change: I'm dropping this to 1 unit as the spread has inflated to 13.
New England -13.5 (1 unit) -$110
Under 54 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 3: New York Giants @ Cincinnati +4
The Giants are coming off a surprising loss to the Steelers that cost me 3 units. I think they're going to wait about 2 weeks to go into Eli Manning-powered overdrive. The Bengals lost by 8 to Denver, much to my dismay last week. I think both sides are overrated here. Cincy didn't deserve to hang with Denver for that long and the Giants are emotionally flat. Going with the home dog for 0.
Cincinnati +4 (0 units) +$0
Under 47.5 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 4: San Diego @ Tampa Bay -3

And, terrible triangle no more! Tampa Bay, Carolina and New Orleans have learned how to play football. Josh Freeman is showing some of that first round ability he had when drafted out of K-State. The Chargers had a convincing victory over KC. I think the Bucs should be 5-6 point favorites. I'll put 1 on them.
Unit Change: I'm feeling way more confident here. The Chargers are just not that good. Bumping it to 3.
Tampa Bay -3 (3 units) +$300
Over 46.5 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 5: Denver @ Carolina +3.5

Denver played solid against Cincinnati, but it's a complete joke that they're at 5:1 to win the Super Bowl. The amount of Peyton-driven hype they're getting is ridiculous. Conversely, the Panthers pulled out a nice win over the Redskins. I'm not sure the Broncos will be up for this non-conference matchup.
Carolina +3.5 (1 unit) -$110
Over 46.5 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 6: Tennessee @ Miami -6.5

I have seen a TON of "experts" who are all over Tennessee. I think I'm going to have to agree. The Dolphins are a solid favorite after a loss, not a familiar situation. I was pretty high on the Titans a few weeks ago, especially against Buffalo. They're not as bad as the public thinks after the Bears game.
Unit Change: I'll bump this one to 3 as well. Why is Miami favored by this much?
Unit Change: Well, the spread has risen to the key number of 7, so I'll bump this to 4 units.
Unit Change: And it dropped below 7 again. Back to 3 units.
Tennessee +6.5 (3 units) +$300
Over 44 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 7: Oakland @ Baltimore -7.5

Uggh, Baltimore is really, really overrated. They beat KC by 7, Cleveland by 10, Cleveland by 7, etc. etc. Joe Flacco is solid, but Ray Rice needs to be seeing more carries. They'll get exposed against Pittsburgh on Sunday Night next week. The Raiders have 3 wins, and may be underrated.
Unit Change: Eh, not feeling this one anymore. Baltimore is still overrated, but the Raiders suck more than I realized.
Oakland +7.5 (0 units) -$0
Under 48 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 8: Atlanta @ New Orleans +2

I told you guys that I learned my lesson on picking against Atlanta last week after the Philly game. Well, they covered against Dallas, even if it wasn't pretty. I'm curbing my wager this week because they're playing in the Superdome, and the Saints are starting to play like a football team.
Unit Change: I'm raising this to 4 units because Atlanta has covered 2.5 in every game this year, and the spread dropped below 3.
Atlanta -2 (4 units) -$440
Under 52.5 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 9: Detroit @ Minnesota +3

The Lions are finally getting on the roll many people predicted, albeit not against top quality competition. On the other hand, the Vikings are cooling off after an early roll. If I was picking Detroit, I'd likely tease them to +4. But I'm going with the home dog for 0 units.
Minnesota +3 (0 units) +$0
Over 46 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 10: New York Jets @ Seattle -5.5

If you've been reading my picks for a few weeks now, you know who I'm picking here. The Jets are, well, the dysfunctional Jets. I'll put the over/under on Tebow starting at QB at 3.5 weeks. The Seahawks have the biggest home-field advantage in the league, and they haven't lost at home all year. Russell Wilson is for real, guys. 3 on Seattle.
Unit Change: I'm feeling this one. Gimme 4 on Seattle.
Seattle -5.5 (4 units) +$400
Over 38.5 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 11: Dallas @ Philadelphia +2

Oh my, it's the overhyped toilet bowl of the week! I teased against these teams last week, an it worked wonders. On one hand, we have the Cowboys who have looked pathetic since their opening win against the Giants. On the other hand, we have the Eagles who have seen calls to bench Vick. I'll go with, uh, Philly? I'm not touching this spread.
Unit Change: This spread has moved to 2.5, I'll lay a unit on the host, but that's all I'm comfortable with on the Eagles.
Philadelphia +2 (1 unit) -$110
Over 44 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 12: Saint Louis @ San Francisco -13

The Rams looked pathetic last time out in London against the Pats. Their front office has to be asking themselves if Bradford is really the QB of the future. They have a lot of picks from the RG3 trade to find a replacement. And here's a San Fran stat I bet you didn't know: they've allowed 12 points TOTAL in their last 3 wins. If that holds, and San Fran scores more than 15, they'll cover. I'll put 2 on them for that.
San Francisco -13 (2 units) -$220
Under 38 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 13: Houston @ Chicago -1

Oh my, this is most definitely the most intriguing game of the week. Finally, NBC shows a Sunday Night Football team not involving Peyton Manning or the NFC East. Both of these teams have 1 loss on the year to Green Bay. Houston hasn't had a game decided by less than 12 points in a month. I think that they're the 2nd best team in football behind Atlanta. Chicago's best win is Indy? Detroit? Tennessee? I like the Texans in this spot.
Unit Change: Well, I'm thinking about it more, and Chicago is overrated. 3 on Houston.
Houston +1 (3 units) +$300
Over 38.5 (0.5 units) -$55

Game 14: Kansas City @ Pittsburgh -13

Kansas City has not held a lead the whole year. Isn't that ridiculous? They're the definition of putrid at this point, it's not the Browns anymore. They didn't cover 12.5 against San Diego (twice), Buffalo or Tampa Bay. However, Pittsburgh did have that fluke loss against Oakland. I think the Steelers are definitely gaining momentum, but their habit of losing to teams they shouldn't (Oakland, Tennessee) makes me not put any units on them.
Pittsburgh -13 (0 units)
Under 40.5 (0.5 units)

Props/Teasers/Pleasers:
Moneyline: Tennessee +220 (1 unit) +$220
Teaser: Tampa Bay +3, Atlanta +4 (2 units) Push +-$0
NFL Picks Week 10: +$580
NFL Picks 2012: +$1697

Monday, November 5, 2012

Projected College Football Playoff and BCS Bowls

Hey guys! I think I'm going to make this a weekly feature for the rest of college football season (which is what, all of 8 weeks?). The first part of the post is going to be about my projected college football playoff I discussed in July, except I've kind of changed how I think the playoff is going to look. Here's a quick outline:
There are 7 BCS Bowls. They are:
Fiesta Bowl
Orange Bowl
Cotton Bowl
Peach Bowl
Rose Bowl
Sugar Bowl
Tangerine Bowl
Few notes:
1) In even-numbered years, the Cotton and Orange Bowls host the semis of the 4-team playoff
2) In odd-numbered years, the Peach and Fiesta Bowls host the semis of the 4-team playoff
3) The Rose Bowl will host the Pac-12 and Big 10 champions
4) The Sugar Bowl will host the SEC and Big XII champions
5) Either the Peach or Orange Bowl (whichever is not hosting a semi-final) will house the ACC champion/Notre Dame
6) After the above rules are filled, the 6 main bowls will pick the top remaining teams in the BCS Standings as at-large teams
7) If, at this point, the top ranked conference champion from the Big East, MAC, Sun Belt, WAC, C-USA or Mountain West (the minor conferences) is not in one of the 6 major bowls, that team will play in the Tangerine Bowl against the top ranked Big 12/Pac-12 team remaining
8) Each conference may only place 3 teams in the 6 major bowls, however
9) If the top minor conference team is already in one of the 6 bowls, the Tangerine Bowl will select the 2 highest remaining teams (can be a 4th team from a conference)
10) No 2 teams from the same conference may play each other in one of the 7 bowls
11) The Rose and Sugar bowls will take a replacement team from their respective conference if they lose a team from that conference to the playoff.

OK, now that I got that out of the way, here's how the playoff would look like this year if the season ended today. I'm using the current BCS standings.
Orange Bowl (semi #1): 1 Alabama vs. 4 Notre Dame
Cotton Bowl (semi #2): 2 Kansas State vs. 3 Oregon
Rose Bowl: 11 Oregon State vs. 16 Nebraska
Sugar Bowl: 5 Georgia vs. 12 Oklahoma
Peach Bowl: 10 Florida State vs. 14 Stanford
Fiesta Bowl: 6 Florida vs. 9 Louisville
Tangerine Bowl: 7 LSU vs. 13 Clemson

For the BCS Bowls, I'll just say what I think the BCS bowls would look like if the season ended today.
National Champ: 1 Alabama vs. 2 Kansas State
Rose: 3 Oregon vs. 16 Nebraska
Sugar: 4 Notre Dame vs. 13 Clemson
Orange: 10 Florida State vs. 9 Louisville
Fiesta: 5 Georgia vs. 12 Oklahoma

That's all for now!

College Football Power Ratings Week 10

Here's my computer's top 25 through week 10. Surprisingly little movement at the top. The number of points that could be on the line in a Alabama-Florida game is absolutely astronomical. However, we do have some major tightening up among teams 2-5.
1. Alabama 154.08
2. Notre Dame 122.54
3. Florida 120.9
4. Georgia 120.82
5. Oklahoma 118.12
6. Oregon 105.53
7. Kansas State 104.38
8. Florida State 98.21
9. South Carolina 96.49
10. LSU 90.78
11. Clemson 89.89
12. Texas 86.02
13. Ohio State 84.14
14. Texas A&M 82.16
15. Oregon State 81.54
16. Nebraska 79.17
17. USC 77.54
18. Oklahoma State 75.85
19. Stanford 72.17
20. BYU 69.8
21. Rutgers 68.33
22. UCLA 68.18
23. UCF 66.51
24. Penn State 65.05
25. North Carolina 64.24
Next 5 out: Michigan, Texas Tech, Louisville, Tennessee, Wisconsin

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

NBA Picks October and Early November

NBA Picks 2012-13: -$160

11/15
Boston @ Brooklyn -4.5
Will Rondo questionable, I'm not sure if Boston will show up against a superior Brooklyn team.
Brooklyn -4.5 (1 unit) +$100
11/14
Detroit @ Philadelphia -8
I think tonight will be the night the Pistons finally win.
Detroit +8 (1 unit) +$100
11/12
Oklahoma City @ Detroit +7
The Pistons have only covered +7 once this year in seven tries, against a bad Sacramento team.
Oklahoma City -7 (1.5 units) -$165
11/11
Miami @ Memphis +2
One of the few times you'll see me take the overrated Heat all year. Even if Wade and LeBron won't be 100%, I like them here.
Miami -2 (1 unit) -$110
Atlanta @ Los Angeles Clippers -6
The Clippers are more than 3 points better than a depleted Atlanta squad.
Los Angeles Clippers -6 (1 unit) +$100
11/10
Minor hiatus, but I'm returning.
San Antonio @ Portland +3
I'll put 1 unit on the impressive Blazers.
Portland +3 (1 unit) Push +-$0
Dallas @ Charlotte +6.5
The Mavs are pretty bad without Nowitzki.
Charlotte +6.5 (1 unit) +$100
Detroit @ Houston -7
The Pistons have been playing awful this whole year.
Houston -7 (.5 units) +$50
11/6
Orlando @ Chicago -8.5
I'm going with the Bulls here for a small play, they're the only side I like tonight.
Chicago -8.5 (0.5 units) -$55
11/5
Minnesota @ Brooklyn -7.5
Can someone tell me why the T'Wolves are getting this much respect without Rubio and Love?
Brooklyn -7.5 (1.5 units) -$165
Portland @ Dallas -4
The Blazers have looked very solid in 3 outings so far.
Portland +4 (1 unit) -$110
11/4
Minnesota @ Toronto -3.5
The Raptors looked solid against the underrated Nets last night.
Toronto -3.5 (1 unit) +$100
Phoenix @ Orlando Pick
The Suns will actually be slightly this side of awful this year, unlike Orlando.
Phoenix Pick (1 unit) -$110
11/3
Toronto @ Brooklyn -5.5
I expect the Nets to be sharp in their debut against a really bad Toronto team.
Brooklyn -5.5 (1.5 units) +$150
Portland @ Houston -5.5
Portland has looked good in 2 games so far, while Houston won't go anywhere this year.
Portland +5.5 (1.5 units) +$150
New Orleans @ Chicago -9.5
I maintain my view that Chicago is really underrated even without Derrick Rose.
Chicago -9.5 (1 unit) -$110

11/2
Houston @ Atlanta -5
I like the Hawks here, the Rockets should be pretty awful this year.
Atlanta -5 (1.5 units) -$165
Sacramento @ Minnesota -3
Chicago @ Cleveland +3
I like the Cavs, but the Bulls are really underrated.
Chicago -3 (2 units) +$200

11/1
Not liking either side on Spurs/Thunder tonight.

10/31
Indiana @ Toronto +2
Toronto is going to be one of the worst teams in the East this year while Indiana will contend for the Eastern title in the regular season. Even without Granger, I like Indiana.
Indiana -2 (1.5 units) +-$0
Denver @ Philadelphia -1.5
I like the Nuggets here. I don't get why everyone loves the 76ers, Andrew Bynum was overrated in LA because of his stellar supporting cast.
Denver +1.5 (1 unit) -$110

10/30

It's the start of the season! I only like 1 game tonight, and it's not the marquee one.
Dallas @ LA Lakers -9
With Dirk out, I don't think Dallas is within 6 points of the Lakers.
LA Lakers -9 (1 unit) -$110

Monday, October 29, 2012

NBA Season Preview

Well, since I'm going to be doing NBA picks, I figured I'd roll out a season preview. I'm kind of picking everything up as I go along, this is going to be my first year follow the NBA as closely as I do the NFL/College Football. In a few days, I might do a post talking about how awfully my MLB season preview I made in April was. Here goes.

Eastern Conference (regular season):

1. Miami Heat
2. New York Knicks
3. Chicago Bulls
4. Indiana Pacers
5. Boston Celtics
6. Brooklyn Nets
7. Cleveland Cavaliers
8. Atlanta Hawks
9. Philadelphia 76ers
10. Washington Wizards
11. Milwaukee Bucks
12. Detroit Pistons
13. Orlando Magic
14. Toronto Raptors
15. Charlotte Bobcats

The Heat are, obviously, the odds on favorite to win the East. I think it's pretty close to a sure thing that they have the best regular season record in the East, but winning the East in the playoffs is another deal entirely. You never know if they're going to run into a roadblock like the Pacers almost were last year. I think this the year things finally come together for the Knicks with 'Melo and crew, and they develop a rivalry with the Nets. The Bulls' supporting cast will step up in Derrick Rose's absence, and will gel with him when he returns around the all-star break. The Pacers have a solid nucleus built around David West and Danny Granger, but we'll see how far it takes them in the playoffs. We'll see if Father Time catches up with the Celtics, but I have a feeling they're staring down an early round exit. The Nets may take some time to gel over the early part of the year, but I think they should be firing guns-a-blazing come April and May. The Cavs are my surprise pick to make the playoffs in the East, I think that Kyrie Irving will finally display his full form this year. The Hawks slip in the last playoff spot because they get enough wins beating up on the soft underbelly of the Southeast Division.

1. Oklahoma City Thunder
2. Los Angeles Lakers
3. Los Angeles Clippers
4. Memphis Grizzlies
5. San Antonio Spurs
6. Denver Nuggets
7. Golden State Warriors
8. Dallas Mavericks
9. Minnesota Timberwolves
10. Houston Rockets
11. New Orleans Hornets
12. Phoenix Suns
13. Portland Trailblazers
14. Sacramento Kings
15. Utah Jazz

The Thunder are the class of the West in my mind, despite trading away Harden to the hapless Rockets. I'm still amazed that such a dynasty has been built in the middle of Oklahoma. The Lakers clock in at #2, but you have to wonder how much longer Kobe can carry the team for. The Clippers are #3, but I think they'll give the Lakers a run for their money to win the Pacific. The up-tempo Grizzlies led by Rudy Gay are my surprise pick to win the Texas err... Southwest Division. The Spurs are going to be a close second, and their age is likely going to catch up with them over the grind of another 82 game season. The Nuggets are next, and Andre Iguodala could lead them even higher and closer to the Thunder. The Warriors, led by the Bogut-Curry-Barnes trio, could be a factor in the Pacific. In the last playoff spot, we have the Mavericks with an aging Dirk Nowitski.

Eastern Playoffs:
1 Miami beats 8 Atlanta
2 New York beats 7 Cleveland
3 Chicago beats 6 Brooklyn
4 Indiana beats 5 Boston
1 Miami beats 4 Indiana
3 Chicago beats 2 New York
3 Chicago beats 1 Miami
Western Playoffs:
1 Oklahoma City beats 8 Dallas
2 Los Angeles Lakers beat 7 Golden State
6 Denver beat 3 Los Angeles Clippers
4 Memphis beats 5 San Antonio
4 Memphis beats 1 Oklahoma City
2 Los Angeles Lakers beats 6 Denver
2 Los Angeles Lakers beats 4 Memphis
Finals:
3 Chicago beats 2 Los Angeles Lakers in 6

NFL Picks Week 9

4:00 and later picks will be up by 2:00
Blegh. I guess you balance out your good weeks with your bad ones. Depending on how Monday night goes tonight, I might be in the red on the year. One thing I took note of was how well my over/under picks did. I may pit more units on those this week, depends how I feel.

Game 1: Kansas City @ San Diego -7.5
Both of these team are coming off losses to some of the NFL's worst teams. Kansas City went down to a pretty bad Oakland team, while the Chargers fell to the hapless Browns. I'm going small on the visitor, as I think San Diego will win by less than a touchdown.
Unit Change:
I'm bumping this up to 2. The Chargers should not be favored by more than a TD against anybody.
Kansas City +7.5 (2 units) -$220
Under 44.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 2: Denver @ Cincinnati +5
I'm really not sure what to think of this game. On one hand, Denver is absolutely on fire right now. On the other hand, Cincy is is a home dog coming off a bye, always a good play. I like both sides here, so I'm going to lay off the units.
Unit Change: I don't know why this line just jumped a point and a half. I'll place a unit on the host.
Cincinnati +5 (1 unit) -$110
Over 47.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 3: Arizona @ Green Bay -10
I guess this is the space for me to complain about Monday Night Football? Did the Cards just decide to not show up? I was going to take off the unit on them so I wouldn't go red on the year, but decided against it. Sigh. I'm not sure who to lay units on here, as the Cards looked awful and Green Bay struggled with the Jags.
Green Bay -10 (0 units) +$0
Over 43 (0 units) +$0

Game 4: Miami @ Indianapolis +1.5
I will admit that when I first saw this line, I thought dyslexia had gotten the best of me and that was a -, not a +. My second reaction was that I would be all over the Colts, until I realized everyone else would be as well. I'm really not sure the Colts are that good, I think the Dolphins are 3-4 points better. I'm gonna fade the public here.
Miami -1.5 (2 units) -$220
Under 43.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 5: Detroit @ Jacksonville +5.5
Both of these teams are coming off solid covers where they were receiving very little action, making this a difficult game to handicap. The Lions are certainly defying my expectations, but are they really 7 points better than Jacksonville? Can Jacksonville play like they did last week, or will Blaine Gabbert play like Blaine Gabbert? I don't have a read on this one, going with the Jags cause they're a home dog.
Unit Change: Neither of these teams have very good defenses, and the O/U is pretty low. I'll put $50 on the over.
Jacksonville +5.5 (0 units) -$0
Over 44 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 6: Buffalo @ Houston -10.5
This matchup is a major breather alert for the Texans. They're so far ahead of everyone else in the AFC South that I'm not sure how seriously they're going to take this one. The Bills are still very much in the hunt in the AFC East. I'll put a unit on Buffalo.
Unit Change: I'm not feeling as comfortable about this. The Bills are getting blown out a lot. I'm dropping the unit.
Buffalo +10.5 (0 units) -$0
Under 47.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 7: Chicago @ Tennessee +4.5
Well, the Titans failed me last week and the Bears did as well. I'm really not sure where I stand on Tennessee, as I think it depends on where I stand on the Colts. I'll say I think the Titans will go 7-9. The Bears are, in my opinion, the 3rd best team in a top-heavy NFC. They can hang with anyone in the league, including Tennessee. You won't catch the Bears breathing in this one, they have the Vikings and Packers hot on their tail. Bears for 2.
Unit Change: I'm dropping this to 1 unit. I just don't feel as confident.
Chicago -4.5 (1 unit) +$100
Over 44 (0 units) +$0

Game 8: Carolina @ Washington -3
I've decided I'm going to scrap the terrible triangle theory. It just hasn't been working lately as a be-all, end-all thing. Washington has hung with every team they've played, except the Pittsburgh game. Surprisingly, the Panthers have also hung with their opposition in pretty much every game. Their last 4 losses are by a combined 10 points. I'm not sure how up for this game the Skins are going to be after 2 tough losses to good teams. 1 on the Panthers.
Unit change: I'm feeling more confident on Carolina, especially since the spread has stayed at 3. Bumping it to 3. Additionally, both these teams have good offenses, so I'll take $50 on the over.
Carolina +3 (3 units) +$300
Over 48 (0.5 units) -$50

Game 9: Baltimore @ Cleveland +3.5
Gotta hurry these picks up since it's Sunday morning. This looks like a classic "Vegas knows more than the bettor" spread. Baltimore only needs to beat the Browns by 4? Easy money! That's not the reason I like Baltimore. The Ravens are not nearly as bad as people think from the Houston game. I'm not going 4 units on Baltimore because I'm a little wary of the spread past 3.
Baltimore -3.5 (3 units) +$300
Under 44.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 10: Minnesota @ Seattle -4
Well, Seattle is at home, and I think they normally get a 4 point edge for home field (with their loud crowd). So Vegas is saying that the Vikings and Seahawks are equally matched. I don't buy that. Christian Ponder is a slightly worse than average quarterback, while Russell Wilson is slightly better than average. Seattle is just more gritty, and has more experience than this young Minnesota team. The Vikings are starting to slide downhill, I'm going 3 on the Seahawks. I'll also put half a unit on the over, I have no idea why the O/U is in the 30's.
Seattle -4 (3 units) +$300
Over 38.5 (0.5 units) +$50

Game 11: Tampa Bay @ Oakland -1
I don't have a real read on this one. The Raiders have looked quite solid since their bye going 2-1, but their wins are over a bad Jacksonville team and a worse Kansas City one. However, they did hang with the undefeated Falcons. However, Tampa Bay has also looked better than expected since their bye. These are 2 teams that I really think could either surprise or flounder in the next few weeks. I'll go Oakland cause I think they're maybe a point worse than Tampa.
Oakland -1 (0 units) -$0
Under 47 (0 units) -$0

Game 12: Pittsburgh @ New York Giants -3.5
The first thing that I'm thinking about this one is the fact that the Steelers are arriving in New York the morning of the game. I have no idea if this isn't going to be a factor at all (likely) or it's going to make them far less prepared (probably unlikely). The Giants however, are one of, if not the best team in football while the Steelers probably clock in around #9. I think the Giants are 4-5 points ahead of Pittsburgh, so I'll place 3 units on them.
New York Giants -3.5 (3 units) -$330
Under 47.5 (0 units) +$0

Game 13: Dallas @ Atlanta -4
I learned my lesson about picking against the Falcons last week in the Philly/Atlanta game. Granted, those were the unstable Eagles, but these are the unstable Cowboys. I don't see any way that any logical person could make an argument that Dallas is within 1 point of Atlanta on a neutral field. This spread isn't screaming too good to be true at me either. I'm placing my 4 unit pick here.
Atlanta -4 (4 units) +$400
Over 47.5 (0 units)

Game 14: Philadelphia @ New Orleans -3
I really don't know which side to like here. I was planning on picking against both these sides this week before I realized they were playing each other.  The Eagles have been pretty dissapointing the last few weeks. Meanwhile, the Saints seem to finally coming out of their funk. I don't really like either side, 0 units on New Orleans. I'll put a unit on the under, as neither of these teams have spectacular offenses.
New Orleans -3 (0 units) +$0
Under 51.5 (1 unit) +$100

Prop/Teaser/Pleasers:
Moneyline: Kansas City +290 (1 unit) -$110
Moneyline: Carolina +152 (1 unit) +$152
Teaser: Chicago +2.5, Baltimore +2.5 (2.5 units) +$250
I'm dropping the 'Skins from my teaser, as I'm more skeptical about them after more research.
Teaser: Seattle +2, Atlanta +2 (2 units) +$200
I don't see either of these teams losing at home to unstable squads.
NFL Picks Week 9: +$1162
Total NFL 2012: +$1117