SportsChump’s NFL Picks against the World – Week Ten

DragoRemember that scene in Rocky IV where Rocky finally lands the blow that cuts Ivan Drago?


I’m Rocky, Kevin’s Drago and now our boy is bleeding.

Yours truly had an uncanny week last week going 9-4 while the Russian continues his downward slide towards irrelevance.

Okay, so Kevin is not Russian but he’s tall, has blonde hair and once had a poster of Bridgette Nielsen hanging in his bedroom so the comparison is at least somewhat apropos.

Here’s where we stand to date.  The Guests, Kevin and I are all within two wins of each other (Picks right: Kev – 65, Guests – 64, Chump – 63) although, with my five pushes, I’m ahead of all of them in the loss column (Picks wrong: Kev – 67, Guests – 66, Chump – 64).

Our substandard picks are eerily like this week’s batch of games, a bunch of otherwise meaningless matchups between banged up opponents that are going to need a lot of luck in making the playoffs.

Speaking of Luck (he’s injured too), let me just preface this week’s picks by saying there’s not too much on this slate that I feel confident about, other than that fact that I won’t go 14-0.

This week, we bring in the good Doctor Milhouse for both Kevin and I are in dire need of some medical attention.

So here we go, ladies and gents.  Let’s roll the dice on Week Ten.




Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (-2.5)

I would say this is Rex Ryan’s return to New York but technically, and perhaps somewhat ironically, it’s not.  He now coaches in New York, when he didn’t before, even though he coached six years for the New York Jets.  I know this is all very confusing and makes about as much sense as anything else in the NFL.  My initial hunch in this game is that the Jets will cover at home but I’m also big on coaching matchups.  Ryan might not admit how big this game is to him but his locker room knows it and they’ll play like it.  I think these Bills like playing for Ryan, except of course for Percy Harvin who doesn’t like playing for anyone.  I think the Bills will win this one for the big guy and expose the 5-3 Jets for the mediocre team they are.  I’m taking Buffalo and the points on the road for what should be an interesting, and perhaps chilly, Thursday night ballgame.


Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (-11.5)

I won money on the Pack last week.  By that I mean I won money on them losing.  I took a cool thirty bones off the Ice Cream Man who thought my logic for taking the Panthers, as dogs, at home against the Packers was unfounded.  I also took the Panthers with the Colts for an underdog two-teamer that paid 5 ½ to 1.  Hooray for me!  Unfortunately, this week isn’t looking so clear cut.  So yes, the Packers have lost two straight and the sky is not falling.  In fact, after being down by quite a bit, Aaron Rodgers staged a late comeback to make the Panthers nervous, to no avail.  Despite the Pack starting out the season winning six straight, this team is by no means spectacular and certainly not living up to the expectations we set for them.  That being said, they’re home to a considerably worse Lions team.  This could be their slump buster.  The question is whether they’ll bust that slump by double-digits.  The Lions are coming off a well-needed bye where the new coaching staff, which includes a man by the name of Jim Bob Cooter, probably sat around and collectively dreaded their upcoming trip to Lambeau Field.  Even though I think Green Bay wins this one, I think their defense is struggling enough to not be able to cover the large number so I’ll take Detroit and hope for a back door cover.


Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-1)

I’m going to this game.  And the Buccaneers will win.  At least they better.  Here’s the difference between visiting Giants fans and visiting Dallas fans.  When Giants fans come to Tampa to see a game, they’re actually Giants fans.  They’re from New York, say “Yo” a lot and have rooted for their team since birth.  Cowboys’ fans, however, have probably never even been to Dallas and just started liking them because they rattled off a few Super Bowls in the 90s.  This year, their team is giving them far less to root for.  They’ve lost six straight sans Romo and even though this might look like an easy win, the Bucs look at Dallas as a team they should most definitely beat.  These Bucs are taking baby steps.  Despite that turtle-like progress, moral victories in the NFL get people fired.  If I were to tell you that, at this point in the season, the Buccaneers (3-5) would have a better record than the Cowboys (2-6), you’d ask me where I bought my crack.  Well, Tony’s Romo’s cracked rib is why they are where they are and another loss will convince Dallas’ medical staff to keep him out for the rest of the season.  Bucs win.


Carolina Panthers at Tennessee Titans (+5)

Did you see Tennessee’s Coach Mike Mularkey after last week’s win in New Orleans?  It looked like he had just won the Super Bowl.  Enjoy that feeling because that’s as close as this Titans team is getting to a Super Bowl any time soon.  Someone should have told him that even the Bucs win in New Orleans but why ruin a man’s moment in the sun.  For some reason, people still aren’t buying into the Panthers.  I’m not one of those people.   I think the Panthers are legit and they’ll prove it this weekend again, on the road, against Tennessee by covering the five.


Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams (-7)

My chiropractor is a Bears fan.  His birthday was last week.  He flew across the country, to San Diego, to see his Bears pull off a win on Monday night that nobody thought they could.  Heck, even I had San Diego winning that one and I knew my boy was going.  So what does that tell me?  Not much really.  Neither Chicago nor St. Louis can afford to lose this game.  Plus Chicago’s last five games were decided by a field goal or less.  This team likes to keep things close and I think they’ll give the Rams all they can handle… by covering.


New Orleans Saints at Washington Redskins (+1)

It sure does seem like there’s a lot of games this week between teams that are out of contention.  Are we that late in the season already?  The Saints are one of the worst defensive teams in the league, 31st in yards allowed.  The Redskins are one of the worst offensive teams in the league, 29th in total yards.  Clearly these two teams need each other.  This is really a coin flip.  I don’t know if this makes any sense or whether it’s even proper English but I think the Saints are less bad than the Redskins?  Please notice that I ended that sentence with a question mark, which truly characterizes the seasons of both these teams.  The coin says Saints so I say Saints.


Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles (-6.5)

Now that Dolphins head coach Dan Campbell has been humbled by Bill Belichick and Rex Ryan in back-to-back weeks, he boards a flight to Philly for another butt-whooping.  After his hot start, Campbell turned some heads and might have even sparked front office talk about taking over the gig full-time.  Now I’m not so sure that’s going to happen.  I’m not saying Eagles’ coach Chip Kelly is in the same neighborhood as Belichick or Ryan.  Clearly he’s not.  But he’s good enough to confuse the hell out of a rookie head coach.  I’m taking the Eagles here as the Fish continue to struggle.


Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-5)

Like I said, are there any teams playing this week that are worth a damn?  Where are the contenders?  Last week, Ben Roethlisberger suffered his second injury of the season.  He will once again miss some time.  On a more positive note for Pittsburgh fans, Antonio Brown had 284 yards receiving last week.  That was a team record and more impressively more yards than most of the teams in this league average per game.  I’m not too sure he’ll put up those gaudy numbers against Cleveland’s secondary but a healthy dose of him and Deangelo Williams, even with the Roethlisberger injury, should be enough to ensure a Steelers cover.


Jacksonville Jaguars at Baltimore Ravens (-5.5)

Another match-up between two sorry teams makes me glad I’ll be at the Bucs game missing the rest of one o’clock the action.  Both Jacksonville and Baltimore are bad.  The Jags, however, aren’t six points worse than the Ravens so I’ll take the points and hope I don’t have to talk about this particular game any longer than I already have.



Minnesota Vikings at Oakland Raiders (-3)

Touchdown Teddy got his bell rung pretty good last week.  Welcome to the NFL, kid, where they hand out concussions at the Draft just so that you’re prepared.  I can only assume this three point line means he’ll play.  This game might actually be worth watching.  But as much as I like the Vikes this year, this one on the road might be a tough one to pull off, particularly with Bridgewater seeing three Raiders to ever one that’s out there.  I’ll take the Raiders to cover.


Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-5.5)

At 3-5, the Kansas City Chiefs have surprisingly scored more points than the 7-1 Denver Broncos.  Go figure.  Defensively, however, they can’t stop a nosebleed.  I have this sneaky suspicion that the Chiefs are desperate enough to keep this one close.  After all, another loss and their season might just be over… so I’ll take the points.



New England Patriots at New York Giants (+7)

I get that the Pats are beating the tar out of everyone.  But these are the Giants, winners of two huge games against them.  Expect the Giants to pull out all the stops which might include them parading David Tyree on to the field pre-game just to get Giants fans fired up.  I’m going with the G-Men here because they appear to be the only team in the league the Patriots can’t beat.



Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (-3)

Finally a good game.  I know the Cards are in first place in that division but I’m going with Seattle to cover the three in front of a raucous Seattle crowd to remind Arizona once and for all who’s the best team in the NFC West.


Houston Texans at Cincinnati Bengals (-10.5)

Who the hell thought it would be a good idea to put the Texans on prime time.  And are the Bengals ever going to play a quality team?  The Bengals continue to roll over their sorry slate of opponents and have the third highest point differential in the league behind New England and Arizona.




Greetings, Chump Fans!


Since we last spoke, I have firmly converted the Chump to a full-blown hockey fan, as well as become his pseudo-bookie. Aside from last weekend and the Miami/Duke miracle, it’s been a lot of awfulness for the two of us this season. But last week after big wins on the Panthers and Colts, and winning my office pool, it’s time to ride the momentum into Week 10 with a chip on my shoulder and a song in my heart. Or at least a whiskey in my hand.


Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (-3)

Buffalo has been surprisingly not awful this year. If they could get their discipline and penalties under control, they could sneak in as a wild card team. The Jets, however, went from having a great defense early in the year to beginning a slow, downward spiral. A Thursday night division game in Jersey will leave one of these teams in the dust. I’ll take the Bills, plus the points, and straight up.


Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (-11.5)

Hey guys, remember when Green Bay was a steamroller that bowled over the entire NFL? It was only three weeks ago. Running into Denver and Carolina put a dent into their aura of inevitability, but Detroit is still Detroit. The Pack will take this by two touchdowns, and Detroit will sink down to the number 1 draft pick.


Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-1.5)

I can’t fathom a scenario where the Bucs are a favorite against anyone. Matt Cassel or no, Dallas will throttle Tampa Bay, who have only one out of their last five as a home favorite. Take Dallas straight up, with the points, and to have more fans in the crowd.


Carolina Panthers at Tennessee Titans (+7)

Cam Newton should commit petit theft more often before games. The Panthers go into Tennessee and face Marcus Mariota, who had a nice debut for new head coach Mike Mularkey. Mularkey, despite having a name that means bullshit, is an offensive mind that could spark the Titans. It’ll be high scoring, and the Titans will probably still lose, but they’ll keep it close enough to cover the spread. The Titans are at 57% as a home underdog, and Cam Newton is only 5-5-1 against the spread as a road favorite.


Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams (-7)

St. Louis getting that many points worries me. Chicago likes to keep games close, and has covered in five of their last six as an underdog. Take the points, and the Bears may even win straight up.


New Orleans Saints at Washington Redskins (+2)

Wait wait wait–I know the Saints lost against Tennessee last week, but the Redskins are so dysfunctional, they make the Brady Bunch 20 Year Reunion Show look like a campfire singalong. Take the Saints and run. Short of Drew Brees dying on the field, this will be your safest bet of the week.


[Note: At this point, I took a short break to go get schnockered at the Chump’s place of employment. I take no responsibility for typos or incoherence from here on out]


Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles (-6.5)

The Eagles are rarely impressive. Their offense is one of those things that decides to be effective at the times you least suspect…like a Ford Escort, or your local Congressman. 22 for 61 against the spread means I’ll be taking the Dolphins to keep it close, but the Eagles will take it by a field goal.


Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-4.5)

Ah, a good old fashioned AFC North slugfest. This is ripe for one of those 13-9 games that everyone immediately forgets when it’s over and tries to slit their wrists while watching. Cleveland covers the spread, but the Steelers win the game.


Jacksonville Jaguars at Baltimore Ravens (-5.5)

Joe Flacco, who is not a elite quarterback, against Blake “Excuse me, my son is also named Bort” Bortles. If you’re watching this game, you’ve already lost a bet. The Ravens will cover the five and a half, and we’re all better off for pretending the game never happened.


Minnesota Vikings at Oakland Raiders (-3)

For the life of me, I always forget these two teams exist this year. I don’t get it–Minnesota was almost a constant in my life when the Bucs were in the NFC Central, and the Raiders were inevitably the televised 4 PM game. Now, I’m almost positive I haven’t seen a single play from each team this year. Call it the Raiders winning and covering, because Minnesota’s traveling 12 hours through four airports to get to Oakland from Minneapolis.


Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-5.5)

Oh, Peyton. He always seems like he’s on his farewell tour, like John Stamos on the Full House spinoff. The Chiefs are as disorganized as a prison riot, so the Broncos will roll on through and cover.


New England Patriots at New York Giants (+7)

Two games in three days in New Jersey. This is your upset alert for the week, as I think the Giants are going to take the Patriots from the ranks of the undefeated and score the win. Get paid on this one.


Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (-3)

Arizona is the surprise of the season with the USC Alumni Association running the offense and with Seattle stumbling around, flailing about like a sweaty octopus trying to unhook a bra, look for the Cardinals to steal one on the road.


Houston Texans at Cincinnati Bengals (-10)

The Bengals try to avoid having to wake up from their dream season, but Andy Dalton the Red Rocket always seems to fall away in the second half of the year. The Bengals will survive with a win, but the Texans will keep it close enough to cover the spread.

And there we are. Waste your money on my picks at your own risk, because I waste enough of my own on them. Good luck everyone!



Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (-2.5)

“It’s just another game”… that’s what’s being said by players and coaches – and surprisingly, that includes Rex Ryan.  Ryan must save all his barbs for the Patriots.  Either way, this one should be interesting.  The Bills focus on running the ball and do so quite well, ranking 2nd in yards per game (141.6) and a tie for first in TD’s (11).  But the Bills have only faced one top five run ‘D’ this season and that was New England, who held LeSean McCoy to under 100 yards.  Of course, most teams fall behind and need to pass against the Pats.  The Jets, on the other hand, have the league’s top run defense and also have home field advantage.  New York will spoil Rex’s homecoming on TNF.  Jets cover.

KP’s Pick: New York Jets


Jacksonville Jaguars at Baltimore Ravens (-6.5)

The Ravens are fresh off a bye but remain decimated by injuries, especially on offense.  With Steve Smith out for the year and rookie Breshad Perriman unable to get healthy, Joe Flacco is left with Kamar Aiken as his top target.  Blake Bortles and the Jags, meanwhile, have both Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns to throw to.  Bortles has been the top passer in five of Jacksonville’s eight games and this week will face a Baltimore defense that is ranked 29th against the pass.  The Ravens also have just three takeaways through the air and have been in tight games on a weekly basis.  Heck… that probably even includes the recent bye week.  Give me the Jags and the points.

KP’s Pick: Jacksonville Jaguars


Miami Dolphins at Philadelphia Eagles (-6.5)

The verdict is still out on Dan Campbell’s Dolphins, that much is true.  Chip Kelly’s Eagles have a similar reputation in 2015, although Philly played well against the Cowboys last week.  DeMarco Murray is playing better and that’s a major need for the Eagles, considering the investment.  His success will be key against a Dolphins team that is ranked 31st against the run.  In its last two home games, the Eagles defeated the Giants and Saints by an average of three touchdowns.  Considering these factors, give me the Eagles to take this game by at least a touch.

KP’s Pick: Philadelphia Eagles


Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-4.5)

Ben Roethlisberger is hurt again and reportedly out for one to two weeks, leaving Landry Jones with the keys to the offense.  Look for Pittsburgh to focus on its run game, with DeAngelo Williams likely to have another big day against a Cleveland run defense that is ranked dead last in the NFL.  Still, Cleveland is a scrappy bunch and has the ability to put up points.  The storyline points directly to Cleveland’s quarterback position and whether the starter is Josh McCown or Johnny Manziel.  McCown is currently considered day-to-day, but if he suits up, Cleveland has a better chance of an upset, or at least at keeping the game at four points or fewer.  This pick is with McCown under center.

KP’s Pick: Cleveland Browns


Carolina Panthers at Tennessee Titans (+5.5)

It’s Week 10 and the Panthers are still undefeated.  Next up: the 2-6 Titans.  Sure, Marcus Mariota was impressive last week, but that was facing the struggling New Orleans defense.  Carolina is a force to be reckoned with and if you look at Mariota’s season, he has yet to face a defense this good.  Cam and the Panthers never win with style points, but that doesn’t mean diddly-squat.  Carolina covers.

KP’s Pick: Carolina Panthers


Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams (-8.5)

Jay Cutler is the all-time TD leader in the history of the Bears franchise.  Sit and process that one for a minute.  Now, process this: the Rams are ranked 4th against the pass (219.8 ypg) and more impressively, have allowed just five passing touchdowns in eight games.  Look at that stat and then think about Jay Cutler again.  He likes to throw the ball to players in all sorts of jersey colors.  Pepper in some Todd Gurley, running on his home turf and facing a Bears defense that is ranked 24th against the run.  Like shootin’ fish in a barrel, give me the Rams to cover at home.

KP’s Pick: St. Louis Rams


Dallas Cowboys at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-1.5)

While the Cowboys continue to spiral into a crownie-induced, Romo-less coma, the Bucs continue to show signs of improvement.  But it should be noted that Dallas did show signs life with more consistent throws from Matt Cassel and a few big plays made by Dez Bryant.  Darren McFadden has also been steady in the backfield.  So, let’s instead focus on the opponents the Cowboys have had to face over the last five games: Saints, Patriots, Giants, Seahawks and Eagles.  Consider those offenses and then look at Tampa Bay – and yes, you too, will take the Cowboys to end that losing streak.

KP’s Pick: Dallas Cowboys


New Orleans Saints at Washington Redskins (+1.5)

Drew Brees opened the season with 8 touchdowns through the first seven weeks and has followed that with ten over the last two.  Translation: Brees is on fire.  The issue is with the New Orleans defense, which has allowed an NFL-high 24 TD’s through the air while managing just 4 INT’s.  Translation: Rob Ryan is not on fire.  The struggling Saints defense could open doors for Kirk Cousins and the Washington passing game, especially with both DeSean Jackson and Jordan Reed healthy.  But the Redskins have been inconsistent and also lost its run game, which is now ranked 27th in the league.  With these factors in mind, give me Brees and the Saints to cover on the road.

KP’s Pick: New Orleans Saints


Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (-11.5)

The Packers and Aaron Rodgers dominate at home and will be tough for Detroit to handle at Lambeau.  With that being said, Green Bay’s defense is on edge, with the team losing two straight games and players shoving each other on the sidelines.  Detroit has the weapons to exploit that unrest, mainly Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate.  It’s the state of Green Bay’s defense which is the major concern here and I’ll take Detroit to keep this game somewhat reasonable.  Pack by 10.

KP’s Pick: Detroit Lions


Minnesota Vikings at Oakland Raiders (-3.5)

The major question mark is the health of Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater, who is questionable and could miss the game due to a concussion.  That would leave Shaun Hill to start and the Raiders to likely stack the box against Adrian Peterson.  Heck… that could happen anyway.  But the Raiders struggle against the pass, allowing 314.6 ypg.  Oakland is respectable against the run and also has home field advantage.  It will be interesting to see how Derek Carr fares against Minnesota’s respectable pass defense.  I guess we’ll have to cross that “Bridgewater” when we get to it.  Sorry, the jokes don’t get much better from here on out and with no Teddy, the Vikings won’t either.  Raiders cover at home.

KP’s Pick: Oakland Raiders


Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-6.5)

Regarding stats and past history, this game is almost like an episode of Let’s Make A Deal.  Behind door number one, you have Denver’s pass rush, which leads the NFL in sacks (30), facing a Chiefs front that has given up the third most sacks (29).  Behind door number two is Andy Reid and his remarkable record coming off a bye week.  Let’s not forget door number three, where Denver has home field, but the Chiefs are looking to avenge a brutal loss to the Broncos earlier in the season.  Eenie, meenie, miney, mo, refuse to catch Andy Reid by the toe – but let’s assume he hollers and the Chiefs keep it close.

KP’s Pick: Kansas City Chiefs


New England Patriots at New York Giants (+7.5)

The Bill Belichick era Patriots have not had great success against the Giants, but let’s consider New York’s defense as of late, giving up 7 TD’s to Drew Brees a few weeks back.  But that’s not the stat that should concern the Giants.  It’s instead New York’s nine sacks on the season (fewest in the NFL).  Give Tom Brady time and pay dearly.  Patriots cover.

KP’s Pick: New England Patriots


Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (-3.5)

Both teams are fresh off a bye, leaving no clear advantage in that department.  Seattle is always difficult to face in front of its home crowd, although this Seahawks team has trouble protecting Russell Wilson (31 sacks allowed, most in NFL).  Arizona doesn’t get to opposing QB’s much, but does feature a relentless and aggressive defensive unit that forces its fair share of turnovers.  Carson Palmer has been fantastic this season, but will be facing a Seattle defense that is ranked 2nd against the pass (186.4 ypg) and has allowed just 6 TD’s through the air in 8 games.  It’s a tricky game and a tricky line.  Nine times out of 10, my gut would tell me to pick the Cardinals, but Seattle is at home and needs this game to stay in the division chase.  Give me the ‘Hawks and a few Maalox, because I feel iffy about this one.

KP’s Pick: Seattle Seahawks


Houston Texans at Cincinnati Bengals (-10.5)

The Texans are coming off a bye, getting plenty time to prepare for the undefeated Bengals.  Cincy has also had extra rest, facing the Browns last Thursday night.  Houston has allowed 40 or more points on the road on two different occasions and will face a similar challenge against Cincinnati.  Considering just how well Andy Dalton is playing coupled with the fact that the Texans are hampered by injuries (especially in the run game), give me the Bengals to cover at home.

KP’s Pick: Cincinnati Bengals

Bye Week: Atlanta Falcons, Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers and San Francisco 49ers

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7 Replies to “SportsChump’s NFL Picks against the World – Week Ten”

  1. Kudos to you on the defeat of Kev ! That being said , there’s some up in New York State who would like to meet you about gaming ? I believe it’s the State Attorney General there ? Next up , Pam Bondi will be visiting the James Joyce to meet with you in person ?

    How bad are the Jets’ secondary at the moment ? Darrelle Revis is now playing like an aging geriatric suffering from hemorrhoids . The Bills soundly beat the Jets last night and the game wasn’t even remotely close.

  2. “I will break you” – KP in Drago voice.

    For what it’s worth, the only six-pack on my body is in the form of beer – a lot of beer.

  3. Pingback: NFL Week 10 Picks: Quizzing the Wife on the Three Undefeated Teams | The Wife Hates Sports

  4. Would like to give a big shout-out to the Dallas Cowboys and Ronda Rousey for proving , talk is cheap and if you can’t back your #hit up then simply shut the ###k up .

  5. Al…

    The Cowboys haven’t been talking much. And if so, nobody’s been listening.

    The only bitching and shouting they’ve been doing has been amongst themselves.

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