Rory’s Corner: Week 15 NFL Picks

I have a confession to make. Last night I watched everything I could besides the football game. Sure I flipped over a few times. But I chose Cavs-Thunder over the football game. I watched the Avalanche play the Islanders in hockey over the football game. Heck, I even watched some women’s volleyball over the football game. I’m not naive, I know that the football game probably still embarrassed those others in ratings, but I’m tired of these Thursday night games. They’re horrible, they usually involve bad teams, the quality of play is wretched, and they’re largely unwatchable. On to Week 15.

Jets (-3.5) over COWBOYS

The Cowboys are horrible. I’m not going to pick them with Matt Cassel, Brandon Weeden, or whatever pedestrian quarterback they want to bring in over the Jets who are a playoff team. Fitzpatrick’s played well the last few weeks, they have some real talent on the perimeter, and their defense is going to eat the Cowboys alive. This is one of the easiest picks of the week.

VIKINGS (-6) over Bears

I don’t feel good about this, I don’t like laying this many points with the Vikings but they need to win this game. They’re trying to keep pace with the Packers, and one thing you can say about the Vikings this year is that outside of the opening game in San Francisco, they’ve taken care of teams they should take care of.

JAGUARS (-3) over Falcons

Is it crazy to say that the Jaguars have the third best offense in the AFC? With no Andy Dalton, it might not be. They just put up 51 points against the Colts who are a possible playoff team. And since Week 5, no one has thrown for more touchdowns than Blake Bortles. Forget the Brady/Cam debate, Blake Bortles for MVP!

Texans (Even) over COLTS

I’m so excited for the T.J. Yates vs. Charlie Whitehurst showdown to possibly decide the AFC South. There’s only about 498 things I would rather watch. I’ll pick the Texans because they do have J.J. Watt, a real defense, and some playmakers on offense. Plus T.J. Yates has won a playoff game, and Charlie Whitehurst looks like some annoying douche who plays guitar, smokes weed, and acts like he’s so much smarter than you because he’s “finding himself” or something. That’s not what I want in my quarterback.

GIANTS (+4.5) over Panthers

If the Panthers win this game they’re going 16-0. But they’re banged up, and their defense has proven to be vulnerable to vertical offenses like the Saints. The Giants offense is really starting to get going, Jason Pierre-Paul is getting better every play, and Odell Beckham is the best receiver in the league right now. I like the Giants at home for the upset.

PATRIOTS (-14) over Titans

Remember the last two weeks when we were freaking out about the Patriots? Now they’re in first place in the AFC, they have the best pass rush they’ve had in years, Gronk’s healthy and the only real threat in the AFC, Pittsburgh, isn’t even in the playoffs right now. It must be so frustrating to root against the Patriots, if you do I hope you enjoyed the last two weeks because it’s back to reality for you.

Bills (-1.5) over REDSKINS

This game opened as a pick ’em, then quickly moved to the Bills -1.5. The Redskins aren’t a great team. The Bills roster is much better than the Redskins, but of course they’ll keep it close by taking a bunch of stupid penalties and bad turnovers. At the end of the day, they’re just a much better team.

Chiefs (-7) over RAVENS

I keep waiting for the classic Andy Reid meltdown at the end of the season. It tried really hard to happen last week, but then Danny Woodhead dropped the game-tying touchdown and the Chargers center forgot to snap the ball. But now the Chiefs are just two games behind the Broncos who still have to play the Steelers and Bengals, and the Ravens are starting Jimmy Clausen at quarterback. I think if the Chiefs can score seven points they’ll cover.

SEAHAWKS (-15) over Browns

This line scares me a little bit, but the Seahawks are red hot right now. Their young offensive line is starting to come into their own, and Russell Wilson is living up to his contract. No one wants to see this Seattle team right now, they’re getting hot at exactly the right time just like last year.

Packers (-3) over RAIDERS

I love the Raiders. They’re primed to contend in 2016. They have an exciting young core in Carr/Cooper/Mack, they’re moving to LA pretty soon, and their about to be very attractive to free agents. All that being said, they’re young, and they’re coming off a huge win over the Broncos, so they are due for a letdown. The Packers have a lot more riding on this game, and they do have Aaron Rodgers, I’ll take them to cover easily.

Broncos (+6.5) over STEELERS

I can’t wait to watch the explosive Steelers offense match up with the Broncos lockdown secondary and relentless pass rush. The Broncos are playing for a first round bye and need to keep winning to clinch their division. I will say, the fact that people are starting to doubt Osweiler is music to Patriot fan’s ears. 100/100 would rather Peyton Manning come to Foxborough for the AFC Championship than Brock Osweiler, and the former looks a lot more likely than the latter.

Dolphins (+1.5) over CHARGERS

The Chargers have kind of thrown in the towel on the season. Their offense hasn’t looked good in weeks, and Rivers is starting to wear down as older quarterbacks do towards the end of the season. The Dolphins offense looked a lot better with Zac Taylor calling plays last week. They’ve been able to establish a running game, and Tannehill made some nice throws.

Bengals (-6) over 49ERS

I’m not ready to freak out over the Andy Dalton injury like everyone else. The Bengals have the most complete roster in the league. Dalton is of course better than A.J. McCarron, but he wasn’t carrying the team. McCarron was thrown into the game he wasn’t expecting to play in and of course struggled, but he still made a few plays and he’ll have a gameplan built around him this week. Maybe I watch to much college football, but I don’t think losing Andy Dalton is a death sentence to the Bengals.

Cardinals (-3.5) over EAGLES

The Eagles are the worst team to bet on or against. They’re the type of team that can beat anyone or lose to anyone. While they’re playing their best football right now, the Cardinals are a much better team. They have a way better quarterback and a better defense. I respect what the Panthers have done, 13-0 is impressive even with as weak as the league’s been this year, but I think the Cardinals are the best team in the NFC.

Lions (+3) over SAINTS

The NFL really has screwed ESPN for whatever reason. There have been very few good Monday night games. At no point from the time they made the schedule to today has this looked like a good game. Do yourself a favor and spend time with your family or something.

NFL Record Last Week: 7-9-0

NFL Record Overall: 99-105-6

 

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