Down and Out on Purple Hills: Week 3 NFL Picks

 

“I just need a god damn moment to think, okay?!” The situation was getting tense and the three giant grape Swisher blunts I’d already ripped with my host were clouding my thinking process. Roughly three hours before, I’d arrived with the intention of drinking on someone else’s dime and cooling out until my present precarious financial situation blew over. My focus was currently on a homicidal, uptown bookie who’d been expecting the back half of what I owed him since early Wednesday morning. Normally this wouldn’t be much of a cause for concern, but my fucking paycheck doesn’t clear until Friday and the bookie is a six foot five, lunatic Viking martial arts expert who goes by the name of Sweebo; possibly because he’s known for beating goddamn welchers to death with sticks, I’ve frankly never been brave enough to fucking ask. My only hope was to skip to the other side of town and lay low until Friday morning. It was a desperate, madwoman’s gambit to be sure – but those are the kind of things one must resort to when you drop a mutherfucking 4-12 week in the sport of gambling. Now, some sweaty, portly indigent was demanding my input on a matter that he seemed to consider of vital goddamn importance. Who was this angry, perspiring pig man with a Kyle Orton neckbeard? He seemed familiar, somehow. Why did he keep repeating the same things over and over despite my clear inability to understand him? Frantically pulling myself back into focus, I suddenly realized that I did indeed know the answer to his queries – “orange juice for the vodka, a pack of Camels and can you see if they have some of those Little Debbie Snack Cakes? Thanks Chaz, I’ll get you next week okay buddy?”

Okay, so where was I? Right, with the understanding that this may be the last time I can get to a computer before Friday afternoon, please allow me to present my 2015 Week 3 NFL picks. Home teams are in caps with my picks to win listed first. Obviously, we had a rough week last week, which reminds me that our legal department has threatened to taze me until I wet myself if I don’t inform you that these picks are for entertainment purposes only. Furthermore, gambling can be a serious addiction problem that can lead you to soul destroying situations; like hiding out in a long-time friend’s basement while trying to make his shitty Toshiba laptop do any fucking goddamn thing whatsoever. This piece of archaic crap is incredible folks, I wasn’t aware they even had fucking laptops in the Mesozoic Era. I’d seriously consider suing Chaz for reckless endangerment after letting me use this piece of shit, but I know for a fact he’s just as tapped as I am. As fucking usual, the law just doesn’t help poor people am I right? Let’s just get on with the picks:

GIANTS (-3.5) over Racial Slurs:

The precise moment you realize your career depends on the competence on Dan fucking Snyder
The precise moment you realize your career depends on the competence of Dan fucking Snyder

Last week, my complex strategy of betting against mismanagement, racism and Dan Snyder somehow backfired when the Los Angeles Rams decided to shit the bed immediately after registering a franchise defining win against the Seahawks. Some might say the Racial Slurs are better than I think they are, others might suggest that it was just a matter of blind fucking luck. These people are completely fucking wrong and the only correct answer is “holy shit does Jeff Fisher suck at coaching” followed immediately by the question “how the fuck is that son of a bitch still employed?” Naturally, I’ll still take the Giants this week because the Racial Slurs are still a dumpster fire, Kirk Cousins is still exactly three seconds away from throwing a back breaking interception at all times, and I would still rather lose money than bet on Dan fucking Snyder’s bullshit football team named after a racial slur.

Falcons (-1) over COWBOYS:

How bad are things down in Dallas? The Cowboys just traded a semi-significant draft pick for Matt “Wild Thing” Cassel despite there being virtually no evidence that Cassel has ever been any fucking good at playing football. He missed the playoffs despite racking up 11 wins with a completely goddamn stacked Patriots team and then faceplanted in the wild card against Baltimore – after riding a good Chiefs defense and a shitastic division to another 10 wins. That and some pre-season games, is the sum fucking total of the case for Matt Cassel and at this point I suspect he’s only in the league because Bill Belichick is an egomaniac who wanted to prove he could turn any dispshit off the street into an NFL quarterback. A four year backup in college, the guy was only good enough to start one bloody game – which he predictably lost because Matt Cassel sucks at football for fuck’s sake. The best part about this cruel cosmic joke on the Cowboys however isn’t that they just traded for Matt Cassel so much as that they may well have to fucking play him because the other options are seriously Brandon Weeden and a sentient, evil garden gnome they found in the Lions trash dumpster. On the other side will be human velociraptor Julio Jones, who is officially doing a better mutherufucking Megatron impersonation than the real Megatron on a goddamn weekly basis. Please excuse me for a moment while I bitch about the evils of nerve damage before breaking down into open tears.

Colts (-3.5) over TITANS:

paganoweb25s-2-web
Pagano demonstrates the size of the fucks he gives about Jim Irsay’s opinions on how to run a football team

Trying to choose between these two teams is like trying to choose between contracting leprosy or rectal cancer in that you’re always afraid of losing a little skin, and you just know shit is gonna get sloppy. Are the Colts even interested in scoring? Can the Titans actually stop anyone from breaking out The Whip in their endzone? Who knows! All the philosophers, scientists and shitheel cult leaders in Vegas don’t have a single fucking clue if the wheels have finally come off for an Indy team that seems to specialize in surrounding its once-in-a-generation, elite QB with stunning disappointment after stunning disappointment. With that having been said, I’ll take the team that’s laying three and a half points on the road, openly feuding with their heroic, cancer-surviving head coach and starting an animatronic Andrew Luck look-alike doll that specializes into staggeringly awful interceptions. Wait, which one of these teams is rectal cancer again?

Raiders (+3.5) over BROWNS:

In an alternate, Bizaro-world universe, where the Cleveland Browns didn’t have their heads so far up their own asses they could smell toothpaste, Johnny Football would be starting this game and I’d be happily laying three and a half points on the Browns. Unfortunately, this is still our universe, the Browns are still run by a criminal, tin-pot dictator who expects this fucking team to win now and Brian Hoyer is still comprised entirely of fail on a goddamn molecular level. This leaves me in the unfortunate position of betting on a Raiders team that couldn’t stop a runaway tricycle and Derek fucking Carr – because life is a savagely unfair, cruel, vicious hoax for all but the most privileged classes in our society.

Bengals (+3) over RAVENS:

Dalton
Shades of Cameron – the Red Rifle prepares to have his way with a dead pig carcass

Do you feel it? That dreadful, cold sweat breaking down your spine as you attempt to come to grips with the existential horror involved in betting real fucking money on Andy Dalton, in a road game, against a team that actually won a goddamn playoff game last year? Absolutely nothing about this activity makes any sense whatsoever until you realize that Dalton is facing off against a Ravens squad that has been torched by what’s left of Peyton Manning and the Oakland Raiders of all fucking teams in back to back weeks. When your defense is such a festering pile of bird shit that you give up 37 points and damn near 500 yards of offense to David Carr’s cross-dressing kid brother, even the Red Rifle starts licking his lips like a fat man at a rib cookout. The Bungles have the better defense, the better offensive line and a high-powered, mutant redzone menace, in AJ Green at wide receiver. The Ravens have, um, Joe Flacco – right, let’s move on.

Jaguars (+13.5) over PATRIOTS:

There comes a time in her life, when every aging woman must come to accept that there are certain, immutable psychological barriers that she can no longer overcome. For example, I can no longer fearlessly ride on steel, death-trap roller coasters at the state fair, I don’t walk to my car alone at night after work and I’m not prepared to consume any food-like substance listed on a mutherfucking Taco Bell menu anymore. Whether time has robbed me of my courage or granted me the wisdom necessary to survive our glorious, brave new world is a question I prefer to leave to future historians – but the years have granted me a certain, intrinsic sense of when I am approaching the proverbial “bridge too far.” Ladies and Gentlemen, that bridge is apparently a thirteen and a half point spread in favor of a team that seemingly delights in a taking stinky, steaming piss on gamblers more weeks than not. May god have mercy on my wretched soul for betting on Blake Bortles and that one time I stole a blind organ-grinder’s monkey. Shit, I hope Sweebo doesn’t find my monkey – the little bastard is a heck of an earner.

PANTHERS (-3.5) over Saints:

Newton Fight
Newton shows off his pearly whites during a Carolina Panthers team-building exercise this summer

The first important thing to note about this game is that its come off the board at a number of gambling establishments because nobody on earth has a fucking clue if Drew Brees is going to play or not. The second important thing to note about this game is that it doesn’t matter in the goddamn slightest whether or not Brees does play because the New Orleans Saints are a towering monument to suck, even for an NFC South team. The Aints are in salary cap hell right now and plugging street free agents in the lineup around Brees as part of a desperate attempt to hide that they’re in full rebuild mode from a fan base full of drunk, illiterate bandwagoners. In fact, the only reason that Brees is still a Saint is because it’s incredibly fucking hard to move a 36 year old QB with a bum shoulder and a twenty-six and a half million dollar bloody cap hit. The beginning of the end for New Orleans was actually two seasons ago but nobody remembered to tell the Saints and their fans, so this somehow represents a stunning collapse for a team that couldn’t make the playoffs last season in the NFL’s equivalent of Conference USA. On the Carolina side of the equation, the big news is that Cam Newton is now smiling too damn much after being criticized for not smiling enough earlier in his career. All I can say is that there’s no fucking way you’d catch Jake Delhomme grinning his ass off like a fool while flipping over the defensive line for an American Ninja Warrior-esque touchdown. Do better Cam, do better.

JETS (-2.5) over Eagles:

Shit Grin Kelly
Is Kelly actually Nick Saban 2.0? Yes.

In lieu of discussing precisely why the Jets incredible defense and Darryl Revis allows them to overcome starting Mark Fitzpatrick at QB in actual fucking football games, I’d like to present the following short list of questions I would like to ask Eagles coach Chip Kelly if we met over half a bottle of tequila:

  • Are you generally aware that you’ve been placed in complete control of a professional football team?
  • Are you generally aware that the Philadelphia Eagles do not play in the Pac-12 and thus won’t be getting free wins against the Beavers, Cougars and Huskies this year?
  • Are you generally aware that most NFL coaches strive for year to year personnel continuity, particularly at key positions like quarterback, running back and wide receiver?
  • Conversely, are you generally aware that running the same 8 plays over and over without changing anything in two entire fucking years is a recipe for disaster in a league where teams meticulously pore over thousands of hours of tape, just to figure out what play their opponent will call next?
  • Are you generally aware that no amount of mutherfucking fruit smoothies can change the fact that Sam Bradford’s knees are held together with staples and Demarco Murray is a walking, talking human bruise?
  • Furthermore, are you generally aware that even if Bradford’s knees weren’t a season-ending IR designation waiting to happen, he’s played so long behind criminally negligent blocking that he’s psychologically fucking incapable of standing in the pocket and delivering intermediate and long ranged passes?
  • Are you generally aware that Eagles fans are fucking sociopaths, love their football team with a fanaticism that often borders on homicidal devotion and have been known to bring spent disposable batteries to the stadium on game day? Follow up question – are you generally aware that you don’t wear a helmet while working the sideline?
  • Are you generally aware that the Arkansas, Auburn and Texas jobs are likely going to be available this offseason and each of these locations are hundreds of goddamn miles away from the City of Brotherly Love?
  • Are you generally aware of where the ladies room is, tequila always makes me a little pukey?

Folks, I have no idea if Chip Kelly hates black people but I at this point I’m pretty sure he’s racist against playmakers and guys who can block. Shhhh, it doesn’t have to make sense sugar, we’ll always have the Snow Bowl together – even if your team dumped Shady McCoy, Nick Foles and DeSean Jackson for guys who aren’t as good as any of those players.

TEXANS (-6.5) over Buccaneers:

Two games, two embarrassing losses and two mind-warpingly horrible excuses for a starting quarterback later, we have everyone’s favorite overrated dark-horse playoff contender – the Houston Texans. Now, I’m no goddamn football coach but I gotta believe that Bill O’Brian is one more Alfred Blue dive into oblivion from starting JJ Watt and Javedeon Clowney in a read option backfield until Arian Foster comes back. You laugh, but is the idea really any worse than trotting out Ryan Mallett to hurl third and long passes into the mutherfucking parking lot for the next month, thereby flushing the entire fucking season down the drain? Right. With that having been noted, this is the last chance I’m giving the Texans to stop wasting my goddamn money – if they can’t beat the Bucs and their “hooked on phonics” rookie QB, I’m demoting them to the Saints/Lions/Bears perpetual pile of pigskin futility.

Chargers (+2.5) over VIKINGS:

Sinkhole
A girl can dream, can’t she?

In my learned wagering opinion, the hardest games to pick each week during a given NFL season are the games that feature two teams you hate with the passion of a thousand suns. These past two weeks of completely predictable Detroit Lions misery have given me the opportunity to develop a healthy disrespect and/or homicidal malice towards both of these squads and once again, I find myself rooting for a giant fucking sinkhole to open up under TFC Bank Stadium mid-game; dooming everyone involved to a gruesome, painful demise hundreds of goddamn feet below the Earth. Harsh, you say? Bullshit – this is the NFL mutherfucker and if you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying dipshit. I bet you the fucking Patriots wouldn’t think twice about lining the opposing stadium with explosives to take out a division opponent before the crucial rematch later in the year. Frankly, this is just another bloody example of the Lions failing to do the little things that need to be done in order to ensure victory – the level of apathy displayed by this organization is simply beyond fucking enraging. Let’s just move on before I put my fist through Chaz’s coffee table.

Steelers (-1) over RAMS:

Brown moments after being savage attacked by a weed-whacker
Brown moments after being savagely attacked by a weed-whacker

Pittsburgh takes its traveling felon show on the road to St. Louis, Missouri of all places to take on Aaron “the Destroyer” Donald and the Los Angeles Rams. The Steelers should be significantly bolstered by the arrival of Le’Veon Bell ,because anytime you can pair a guy too fucking stupid to avoid blazing up in his own car, with an alleged two-time rapist in the backfield – good shit is just bound to happen! No word yet on whether or not Steeler’s Coach Mike Tomlin will deploy back-up QB Mike Vick in a formation with Bell and Roethlesburger to form the Million Years (on Probation) backfield, but you can be sure as shit he’ll find away to get the ball to walking SportsCenter highlight clip, Antonio Brown. Despite possessing the dumbest mutherfucking haircut in the entire league, Brown is clearly the best deep threat in the NFL and frankly the competition isn’t all that close. No seriously though, about that haircut – what in the holy fuck is going on with the top of Antonio Brown’s dome? Did he lose a bet? Did he just walk into the barbershop and say “fuck man, I’d really like to look like a Phillips head screwdriver” or something? How many league interns do we have to physically assault to get someone from the NFL front office to answer these key questions about Brown’s lid? Oh, there is also another team besides Pittsburgh playing in this game but as they are coached by the aforementioned mental midget of failure: Jeff Fisher, I see no real reason to discuss them at all.

CARDINALS (-6.5) over 49ers:

Kaepernick Douchbag
Photo of an actual, grown man who supposedly dresses himself daily

Okay folks, I give up – after two years of losing my hard earned money betting against Carson fucking Palmer and/or the Arizona Cardinals, I’m finally jumping on the bloody Bird Gang bandwagon; which is somehow still small enough to be more like a Bird Gang VW bus with a crackled axel and a broken AC unit. How does Bruce Arians squeeze so many wins from a team comprised of Larry Fitzgerald and guys rescued from the Island of Unwanted Free Agents? Your guess is as good as mine ladies and gentlemen, but my money is on peyote, vision quests and ancient Toltec war rituals until further notice. Frankly, it doesn’t matter how the fuck Arians works his dark and sinister magic – so long as the Cardinals keep choking bitches out like Charles Saatchi casually assaulting his terrified wife in the middle of a seafood patio lunch. On the opposite side, the 49ers counter with Carlos “I’ll tan yer fucking” Hyde and a Quarterback who can’t read a defense, sucks donkey cock at clock management and still dresses like an upmarket, hipster, douchebag version of Mike D. Given the choice between Palmer and a guy so half-witted and self-absorbed that he tried to hijack the fatal flash floods in Houston this summer to promote his fucking personal brand on twitter – I’ll take the gimpy vet who doesn’t have scenes and verses from the goddamn Bible tattooed all over his body.

Bills (+2.5) over DOLPHINS:

Let’s review the facts of this game for a moment here, shall we? The Buffalo Bills come into this game fresh off waxing Indianapolis and a surprisingly close loss against the reigning SuperBowl champion New England Patriots. The Dolphins on the other hand, have been a raging dumpster fire for two consecutive weeks and just managed to lose a game to the goddamn Jacksonville Jaguars; after requiring a furious, fourth quarter comeback to pull out the fucking win vs the Washington Racial Slurs in week 1. The Fish can’t stop the run, suck at running the ball themselves and may have already pissed off 114M dollar free agent malcontent Ndamukong Suh so much that he’s blowing off play calls in favor of working out his frustrations on the nearest mutherfucker in an opposing jersey at the snap of the ball. Somehow, despite all this Miami is favored by two and a half points because people in Las Vegas snort a mind-numbing amount of premium Bolivian marching powder. Viewers are reminded to keep an eye on Richie Incognitio, as he continues his valiant struggle to avoid calling his teammates “cunt-bitch-pussy-faggots” in an effort to hide his own latent homosexuality from a world he subconsciously fears would despise him for it.

SEAHAWKS (-14.5) over Bears:

jimmy clausen black eye
Evidence that beating up Clausen is both easy & fun

Now, let’s get one thing absolutely, perfectly, completely fucking clear before we go any further here today folks – a fourteen and a half point spread in a matchup between two 0-2 football teams is a mutherfucking crime against all that is good, pure and profitable in America. It is extremely, extremely difficult to cover a two-touchdown handicap at the NFL level and under most normal circumstances I’d happily take the bloody Bears and call it a day. Two things however give me pause:

  • The Seahawks, who are always much better at home, will likely welcome the return of designated heat-seeking missile Kam Chancellor and he will be eager to prove he’s still the hardest hitting box defender in the entire goddamn NFL.
  • The Chicago Bears are going to be forced to hand the ball to Matt Forte on nearly every single fucking play because Alshon Jeffery is limping around on a bum hamstring and Jay Cutler is out with a severe case of “injured while stupid” – leaving the sublime turnover artist Jimmy Clausen in charge of an offense that couldn’t score at a Catholic book club for divorced mothers even when it wasn’t starting literal fucking Kryptonite at the QB position.

Get the morphine folks, Forte might not survive the fucking night by the time the Legion of Boom is done with him – the Seahawks should win big as they take out two weeks of abject frustration on a Bears team that could seriously flirt with a 3-13 record this season.

Broncos (-3) over LIONS:

So, let’s see – the Lions come home to face off against the 2-0 Broncos with no wins, no goddamn clue how to put their offense in a position to succeed and an offensive line that may be actively trying to murder Fat Matty Stafford. Facing a do or die match-up, they’ll square off against the number one pass defense in the entire fucking NFL and a Broncos front seven that might set a record for quarterback decapitations in a single season. Wait, it gets better because Detroit’s defensive sucks sweaty elephant testicles unless it can generate a pass rush and Detroit’s official QB killer, Ziggy Ansah is listed as questionable with a back injury. To add the necessary icing to the Lions cankerous cake of failure, star linebacker DeAndre Levy still appears to be out with a mysterious fucking hip injury that might also be a mutherfucking tropical disease; depending on who exactly you ask on any given day or phase of the waxing moon. Add it all up and you get a double-digit Lions loss, a season ending injury to Fat Matty and millions of distraught Michiganders frantically Googling “when does hockey season start” before the first autumn frost.

PACKERS (-7) over Chiefs:

Reid
Andy explains his uncanny ability to dominate the Chili’s snack bar line-up

And so, we come to our final match-up of the week and it sees the return of bumbling idiot Chiefs coach Andy Reid to prime time television – a mere eleven days after his team choked like a stray dog gnawing on a chicken bone against the Denver Broncos. Frankly, I don’t have the slightest fucking clue why Reid’s teams seem bound and determined to collapse like a cheap Ikea table assembled by a blind carpenter in high-pressure situations. Maybe they lack confidence, maybe Alex Smith should be working in the fucking Arrowhead snack bar, or maybe, just maybe Reid is too busy thinking about shoving his fat fucking face full of pie after the game to actually, you know, coach his team to victory. At this point, I’d almost feel bad for Reid if he didn’t consistently find a way to cost me money every single year for at least the past goddamn decade. Fuck Andy Reid with a chainsaw I say, which is funny because that’s precisely what Aaron Rogers is going to do to his team this Monday night.

Well, there it is ladies and gentlemen – my step by step guide to wagering on Week 3 NFL action for unhinged lunatics brave enough to take gambling advice from a woman who went 4-12 against the spread a mere week ago. As always, I’m not legally allowed to say these picks will win you money, but since I’ll probably be the victim of a blunt force trauma injury at the hands of a 6’5” psychopathic Swede if they don’t, who really gives a shit anyways? Bet big, misery loves company!

 

Last Week: Don’t Even Fucking Ask

Season: 12-19-1

  • Nina Illingworth