Sunday, September 23, 2018

PIGSKIN 2018: Week Three

Week Three

Week One
Week Two

Week Two Record:  5-9
Overall Record (ATS):  11-14-1
Schmear of the Week:  2-0
Bagels in the Basket:  +1

  • Just a reminder, Pigskin bets Bagels, and the Schmear of the Week is worth three. I count Push against my record.  I either win, or I don't ... no participation trophies here.

N.Y. JETS: Sam Darnold Throws the Dawg Pound a Bone

The Browns enter last Thursday's game 1-32-1 over their last 34 games.  This night starts out no differently.  Sparked by a rabid defense, the Jets break out to a 14-0 lead on two Isaiah Crowell rushing touchdowns.  Gang Green lays siege upon Cleveland's Tyrod Taylor, sacking him three times.  Taylor would exit the game after suffering a first-half concussion.  Then, suddenly, the Jets engines shut down.  In relief of Taylor, Heisman Trophy winner and first overall selection of this year's NFL draft, Baker Mayfield helps lead the Browns to a 21-17 victory in his NFL debut.  The Jets, limited to just a field goal since 7:54 of the second quarter, still have one last possession.  But with under two minutes left in the fourth quarter, Sam Darnold throws his second INT of the game in Jets territory, thus sealing Cleveland's first victory since week sixteen of the 2016 season.  For a weekend, at least, Thursday's result makes Cleveland look like geniuses for opting against drafting Sam Darnold, and instead selecting Baker Mayfield with the first overall selection.  When the Giants with the second overall pick select Saquon Barkley, the Jets very happily select Darnold with the third overall pick.  Happy, however, is not a word I would presently associate with Coach Bowles.  After about 23-minutes or so of smooth flying, the Jets suffered every conceivable malfunction, and and one particular episode of an employee's piss poor behavior.

1st and Ten:
  • See above.  The Browns raise eyebrows when they play Pittsburgh to a tie.  Defeating the Jets is a mild achievement at best, but the Browns are now 1-1-1, nonetheless.

2nd and Long:
  • The first two weeks are always whacky ... no?
  • Enjoy this 2-0 start, Ocean Mammal fans.  The AFC East is between you and New England.  Good luck with that.
  • Do the 0-2 Raiders ( hem, John Gruden) regret trading Khalil Mack, yet?
  • Didn't anticipate Houston starting 0-2, but there's good news Texans fans, you're playing the Giants.
  • Just when I thought Ryan Fitzpatrick couldn't pull that off again, he and the damn Tampa Bay Buccaneers go and pull that off again.

No Gain:
  • Hello, my name is Michael, and I'm a Giants fan.  The team is off to an 0-2 start.  Their offensive line is miserable to begin with.  Now they lose their starting center (who wasn't even a real center by trade to begin with...) for the season with a broken leg.
  • For Jets fans, it's like Week One never happened.
  • The seemingly fireproof Marvin Lewis has his Bengals off and running with a 2-0 start.  But, does it really matter?

  • After two weeks, it seems as if Arizona's windows have just been slammed shut.  They're making the Buffalo Bills look good by comparison.  Arizona has a -52 point differential.  Buffalo is slightly higher with a -55 mark, but at least they've scored 23 points thus far.  Meanwhile the Cardinals have scored just six points through two games.
  • I'm punting on that whole debate as to whom needs whom more with regard to the relationship between Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.  I believe they needed each other in order to achieve such great dynastic heights.  They would have enjoyed their own respective success apart from each other as well, however, to a much lesser degree.  Perhaps one or two rings for this one, and maybe a pair for that one.  If apart, neither would have won five rings, nor appeared in four other Super Bowls, much less nine overall dating back to Super Bowl XXXVI.

Friday Line  ~ NYDN

TEXANS -6 (Giants)
It's just a matter of time before the Texans get their rodeo going and string together some victories.  Playing at Houston, that time may be now.  The Giants defense is minus Eli Apple and Olivier Vernon (whom will miss his third straight week of action).  Offensively, a bad Giants offensive line just got worst as they lose starting center Jon Halapio to a broken leg.  If Eli Manning is already hard pressed at getting Odell Beckham the ball, how do you think this latest development will affect him?  Any match-up advantage Odell could have benefited from against an injured Texas secondary is now potentially negated by the Giants decreasing pocket protection.  The Giants added a fullback to the 53-man roster (about damn time!!!) in an effort to reinforce Saquon Barkley's sputtering quest for daylight.  I see nothing positive happening for Big Blue Sunday.
LOSS; 27-22 Giants

EAGLES -6 (Colts)
Andrew Luck is looking good again.  But six points screams confidence coming off Philadelphia's recent loss.  Perhaps that loss snaps the Eagles out of last year's frame of mind and into Sunday's game.
LOSS; 20-16 Eagles

Bengals +3 (PANTHERS)
Never know what to expect with the Panthers.  I'd stay away from this.  On a different note, this is typical Bengals setting up Coach Lewis for another late season meltdown.
LOSS; 31-21 Panthers

JAGUARS -6 1/2 (Titans)
All Jackson does is continue proving themselves.  I love getting half-points.  I think SACKsonville will pressure Tennessee's Marcus Mariota.
LOSS; 9-6 Titans

Saints +3 (FALCONS)
Great game.  Nothing against the Falcons, but I still say the Saints will be one of the more balanced teams of the league.  That loss against Tampa, though, was a real head-scratcher.
WIN; 43-37 Saints  o.t.

RAVENS -5 1/2 (Broncos)
I'm reinvesting in the Ravens, largely because John Flacco has weapons to work with, again.  Denver worked far too hard at home in topping the Raiders.
WIN; 27-14 Ravens

Dolphins -3 (RAIDERS)
Speaking of Oakland ... when it rains, it pours.  John Gruden couldn't have his team any less prepared.  Tannehill played a very efficient game against the Jets last week.  If he plays similarly, the sea mammals will outlast and overcome a presently inept Oakland team.
WIN; 28-20 Dolphins

D.C. HOGS -3 (Packers)
I'll take my chance Alex Smith finally snaps out of his funk.  After all, he is still readjusting to a new team and system.  Aaron Rogers can only perform so many miracles with that cranky knee.
WIN; 31-17 Hogs

VIKINGS -16 1/2 (Bills)
If I were a betting man, put together a three team tease and add the ten points.  Don't like these larger than usual spreads.  Oh, wait!  They're playing the Bills.
LOSS; 27-6 Bills

Niners +6 1/2 (CHIEFS)
I know the Chiefs are hotter than a sweatband in a fireman's helmet.  Just hoping the Niners can generate enough points to cover.
LOSS; 38-27 Chiefs

RAMS -7 (Chargers)
Battle of the NFL nomads.  The Chargers are a paper tiger.
WIN; 35-23 Rams

Bears -6 (CARDINALS)
Cardinals are as down as they've been for many years.  Their last two weeks have been absolute abysmal.  The Bears might finally figuring how this thing called defense works.
LOSS; 16-14 Bears

Cowboys +1 1/2 (SEAHAWKS)
Like this spread.  The Seahawks are 0-2, and feature an inept offensive line presently rivaling that of the Giants.  Seattle's 12th man won't factor much if Dallas runs the ball with power.
LOSS; 24-13 Seahawks

Patriots - 6 1/2 ( LIONS)
Nothing scientific here.  The Patriots lost by nine last week, but should have their way with Detroit.  Famous last words ...
LOSS; 26-10 Lions

SCHMEAR of the WEEK: (2-0)

Good luck, and have a great Football Sunday, everyone!

Week Three Record (ATS):  5-9
Overall Record:  16-23-1
Schmear of the Week:  3-0
Bagels in the Basket:  -1

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