Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Betcha Bottom Playoffs: Week 2

Home field advantage has proven to be quite the - uh, advantage so far.

In the first weekend of the NFL playoffs, home teams were 4-for-4. Thousands upon thousands of football fans walked out of their stadiums with chests puffed, chins out and wangs mildly erect.

The trend won't continue.

This weekend's matchups are much more intriguing. I was damn confident the Patriots would beat the Jets, and the Eagles would take care of the Giants. And I'm not confidant about anything this go-round - except the fact that an underdog will have a W by Sunday night.

Indianapolis @ Baltimore (-4). The Ravens were my preseason Super Bowl pick, so it stands to reason I think they're going to win this game. But when have you ever expected reason from me? Peyton Manning looked like boiled ass last week, but I can't see him turning that out two weeks in a row. The Ravens defense is good, but the Colts will find a way to pick it apart and win one on the road. And as much as I'd like to see Peyton go to the AFC Championship, the thought of seven straight days of "Can Peyton finally win the big one?" stories are already making me want to puke. PICK: Indianapolis

Philadelphia @ New Orleans (-4 1/2). I've pretty much come full circle on the Saints. I hate to sound like a bandwagon guy or somebody who isn't happy about Hurricane Katrina's devastation, but I'm starting to root for this New Orleans squad. I still hate the city, don't get me wrong, but I like the guys on the team: Drew Brees, Reggie Bush, Deuce McAllister, Marques Colston, this guy, etc. And it will be fun if the Falcons can beat the Super Bowl champion twice next year (echoing my recent "Go Florida!" chants). So go Saints. Whatever. PICK: New Orleans

Seattle @ Chicago (-8 1/2). The Seahawks are playing on borrowed time - thanks to one Mr. Carrie Underwood. Yep, Tony Romo - who was christened savior in the month following Thanksgiving - has now been transmogrified into the biggest Dallas goat since Leon Lett. And nobody is happier about Romo's downfall than original 2006 Dallas starting QB Drew Bledsoe. Hell, he says as much in his very candid blog. Ok, it's not actually Bledsoe's blog, but it is funny as hell. Also funny as hell, by the way, is the idea that any team quarterbacked by Rex Grossmann is favored by 8 1/2. The Seahawks are barely "good," and are miles away from any tags of "great" or even "very good," but the Chicago offense has been put-put-putting along and can't even be labeled "average." Shaun Alexander keeps it very close. PICK: Seattle

New England @ San Diego (-4 1/2). The Patriots win this game. I don't want them to. I like the Chargers, and really hope they get to the Super Bowl. LaDainian Tomlinson will miss next year because of the Madden Curse, so this is the time. And I hate all Boston sports, from the Patriots and the Red Sox down to the 6-year-old teeball teams. I hate 'em all, and hope each one of them suffers a torn MCL, ACL, aorta, whatever. But the Patriots win this game. Man, I want to be wrong on this one. PICK: New England

Terrorists @ Jack Bauer (-14 1/2). The sixth season of 24 starts this weekend, with two episodes on Sunday and two on Monday. Well, I've actually seen all four already - and good God, this show just keeps getting better. Sure, it's far-fetched, and the "real time" aspect of the show gets shoved aside more and more (Bauer goes from bearded and dirty to clean-shaven with a fresh set of clothes in about 45 seconds, for example). It's easy to forgive, though, when you have Kiefer Sutherland returning to his Lost Boys roots in the first episode, and then showing why his Best Actor Emmy was well-deserved in the shocking final minutes of episode four (seriously, somehow fasten your jaw to your face to avoid dislocation). The Jack Bauer Power Hour is back, baby. PICK: Bauer

Last week: 2-2
Overall: 96-87-3
Fake wagering total ($50 on every game, 10% juice on losses): up $15

That's unbelievable, by the way. I've "bet" on 186 games this year, and I am up fifteen dollars. (And that's with $435 lost in "juice" alone. It's a killer).

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