Jaguars-Titans, A Game Where No One Wins

Tonight’s game between two 2-12 teams has to have a winner (ignoring the unlikely event of a tie), but even that team will lose.  That’s because winning will pretty much put that team out of the running for the number one draft pick this offseason.  Truth be told, the Tampa Bucs have the inside track on that anyway: they’re also 2-12, don’t have to play another 2-12 team, and have two very losable games left against Green Bay and New Orleans.  If Tennessee loses, they’ll also need to avoid a win against the Colts in week 17: doable, but Indy might not have anything to play for.  If Jacksonville loses, they’ll try to lose again to Houston; depending on how the other games go this weekend, they might be eliminated from the playoffs and not trying too hard either.  Oakland is also in the running at 2-12; they have the Bills and Broncos left on the schedule.  But at least according to 538, the Bucs have the best chance of coming out on top. So to speak. Continue reading

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NFL Week 15 Results

After getting the Cardinals’ pick right on Thursday, things took a turn for the worse with the model picks.  Fortunately, the Lions’ victory has them limping toward the playoffs with somewhat surprising fortitude.  I was happy that the models were right about the Vikings’ cover but Detroit won anyway.  Let’s get through the rest of the results, even if there might not be too many correct picks after those two. Continue reading

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NFL Week 15 Picks

As far as I can tell, there are only two games today that don’t involve a potential playoff team: Tennessee- Jets and Giants-Washington.  Instead, those games could determine who gets the top pick in the draft.  So every game is important this week!  The models are already off to a good start this week with Arizona’s cover (and outright win) over the Rams on Thursday.  The Cardinals have a pretty solid chance of getting a bye and being a home underdog in the second round if they keep this up; they only scored 12 points and lost a QB again.  When I went through some playoff possibilities last time, I had Arizona traveling to New Orleans or Atlanta as the 5 seed, but they all assumed the Cardinals would lose.  Now, Arizona has two wins in hand over Seattle and gets to host their game next weekend.  It isn’t a fool-proof lead by any means, but it’s a decent one. Continue reading

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Rams-Cardinals Pick and Some Playoff Thoughts

The Cardinals travel to St. Louis tonight (actually, I’m sure they’re already there, since the game kicks off in a few minutes), and the line is a little silly.  The Rams are 5.5 or 6 point favorites.  Just to remind you, St. Louis is 6-7 and more or less eliminated from playoff contention while Arizona is 10-3 and would have a bye if the playoffs started today.  Of course, that ignores some things.  Like that the Cardinals are on their backup QB and had lost two in a row before a narrow win over the Chiefs last week.  And that the Rams have been very feisty and are coming off back to back shutouts, and beat the Broncos not long ago.  And the game is in St. Louis.  That being said, the Cardinals still have the better overall record; they’ve outscored their opponents by 37 points overall while the Rams are even, and in related news Arizona has the better SRS.  Even if the Cardinals have been slumping recently, one of those losses was to Seattle and both were on the road; before that, they beat the Lions to cap a six-game winning streak.  As the models see it, St. Louis is a tiny favorite but not nearly worth 5 or 6 points.  They are taking the Cardinals to cover. Continue reading

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NFL Week 14 Results

As we get closer to the end of the season, there’s more pressure (at least mentally, for me) on the models to have good weeks in an effort to get to something in the neighborhood of .500.  I usually start writing these summaries without taking a close look at the results, but my vague impression is that things went ok this week.  Let’s see if I was right. Continue reading

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NFL Week 14 Picks

We’re one game down to start the week thanks to the Cowboys winning handily against the Bears.  Chicago didn’t have anything to play for, and it didn’t help that Brandon Marshall missed half the game (and will now miss the rest of the season).  It was a big win for Dallas though, as it keeps them strong in the playoff hunt.  They would end Sunday tied for the division lead (at least on record) if the Eagles lose to the Seahawks, which seems like a distinct possibility.  I don’t think in general that the team that ‘needs it more’ wins, but chalk one up for that team this week. Continue reading

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NFL Week 13 Results

Everything was gravy this week after getting to see the Lions win in person on Thanksgiving Day.  But let’s see how the models did, just in case that gravy turns out to be tasty.  If not, I’ll console myself with thinking that there’s no way the Lions can blow the playoffs two years in a row. Continue reading

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