The 2010 NFL Picks
Week Sixteen


Two weeks.

32 games.

That’s it.

With teams fighting for a spot in the postseason, and some for playoff seeding, we also have some really interesting scenarios developing here with the picks.

Mike is comfortably in the lead with a solid 8-game cushion over Gus and me. Molly is right there and Terry isn’t too far away from the middle of the pack. (Gus and me. Gus and me. Doesn’t sound right. Gus and I? Gus and me… Gus and I… me or I… Gus and me? Probably Gus and I. The hell with it.)

Now… Mike Jr. He’s got a few things going on. He missed a game last week… which he admitted would have been a loss, but we’re not going to hold that against him. As of this writing though, he’s missing a game this week too. He’s been trying to make a run at getting his record to even, but keeps hitting stumbling blocks along the way. And now… Sam is mounting a furious charge from the basement. For the last three weeks, Sam has turned in the best record. And, heading in to week 16, Sam finds himself in a tie with Mike for winners picked.

So yeah… we’ve got all sorts of little details flying around.

With the games, the more things change… well, actually, the more things change we find that nothing has really changed. Upsets and unpredictability rule. And… hold on… new paragraph.

That collapse from the Giants was just flat out stupid play. Their reaction to the onside kick was brutal. Handful of minutes left, team kicking is trailing by 14, and the front line of the return team breaks back to block while the ball is tipped 10-yards for the easy recovery. Insane. Sure… mistakes happen. But combine that with the final punt and a few other details and what you have isn’t a Philly rally, it’s an undisciplined disaster for New York. Philly looked explosive. But if you watched the whole game, they didn’t look great. They didn’t win that game. New York lost it. And while a win is almost always a win during the regular season… it’s worthy of keeping in mind.

Bad… bad… bad football.

I’ve decided to go with Toy Story this week…

(By the way… funny thing about the quotes. I try to make them work where I can. I do actually look at the quotes, and then when possible find a game that fits. Some times I’ve just got a great quote that is amazingly memorable from the movie and it doesn’t work for a specific game. It happens. Last week though… Philadelphia against New York and quotes coming from Cast Away… “We live and we die by time. And we must not commit the sin of losing our track on time.” I’m just saying…)

Carolina at Pittsburgh (13½) “All right, that’s enough! Look, we’re all very impressed with Andy’s new toy.” “Toy?” “T… O… Y… toy.” “Excuse me, I think the word you’re searching for is ‘space ranger.’” “The word I’m searching for, I can’t say, because there’s preschool toys present.” Let’s for a moment… a brief moment, but stay with me… consider Carolina as a true threat here. (Hey, if for no other reason than a two touchdown spread should give us a reason to pause. Ok? Good.) It’s been more than a month since the Panthers were held under 10 points. November 7th… and 6 games ago actually. And that’s significant since 3 of their first 6 involved scoring 7 or less. You could argue that their horrible play, has, of late, not been horrible… only very bad. The Steelers are 4-3 at home this year. You could argue that the Steelers need to be viewed as needing 30 to not just win this game, but cover. They’ve done that twice this year… and frankly, are more likely to score about 28 and no more. So there is reason to look at the Panthers and consider them. That said… the Panthers are 0-6 on the road, and of those six they have lost by 13, 10, 15 and 17. There is no reason to look at them for long and consider them. The Steelers likely need to win the last two games to take the division title… and earn a first round bye. The Panthers are making plans for Christmas morning and January vacations.
Bob: Pittsburgh
Terry: Carolina
Mike: Pittsburgh
Molly: Pittsburgh
Gus: Carolina
Sam: Carolina

Dallas (6½) at Arizona “You actually think you’re the Buzz Lightyear? Hey, look, everybody! It’s the real Buzz Lightyear!” “You’re mocking me, aren’t you?” About a month ago, the Cardinals were one of those funny NFC West teams. A division seemingly determined to send a club with a losing record to the playoffs, Arizona wasn’t out of it. Then, there was that loss to San Francisco in a sham of a game and the bottom dropped out. The problem is, as a solid showing in destroying Denver at home exemplifies, you can’t just shrug your shoulders and say they stink. Remember I said Pittsburgh hasn’t had much luck clearing 30 points? Arizona’s done it 3 times. This is the textbook example of a crappy team that is so utterly crappy they should never be favored and yet figures out a way to light up the scoreboard once a month. Oh yeah… and Dallas? 3 point win (in a game they were romping along in), 3 point loss, 3 point win, 3 point loss… that’s the last four games. They’re 4-2 under the new coach, and since Thanksgiving have managed to make every game a battle. 6½? I don’t like it. I hate it. And yet I have to take the Cowboys.
Bob: Dallas
Terry: Arizona
Mike: Dallas
Mike Jr: Arizona
Molly: Dallas
Gus: Dallas
Sam: Dallas

New England (8) at Buffalo“Right now, poised at the edge of the galaxy, Emperor Zurg has been secretly building a weapon with the destructive capacity to annihilate an entire planet! I alone have information that reveals this weapon’s only weakness. And you, my friend, are responsible for delaying my rendezvous with Star Command!” “Youareatoyyyy!” Ok… now… slowly… very slowly, consider that New England has looked inconsistent on the road. I know. I know. Defeated Pittsburgh on the road. Looking great overall. Took care of business against Green Bay last week, even though it was touch and go. But both of their losses were on the road… and that victory over San Diego wasn’t exactly a solid pounding. In reality though… this is a much different team as opposed to earlier in the year. They don’t seem to shut down in the second half of games, and look more disciplined and prepared. I expect an early lead and a comfortable ride.
Bob: New England
Terry: New England
Mike: Buffalo
Mike Jr: New England
Molly: New England
Gus: New England
Sam: Buffalo

New York (Jets) at Chicago (1)“That wasn’t flying! That was... falling with style!” In many ways, this is the trickiest game of the week. The Jets are 6-1 this year when they travel… and that loss was against New England. And, as we know, everyone loses when they travel to play New England. So the big, bad, scary Bears aren’t exactly a team you should have marked down to destroy the Jets. And yet… I think they will. While the Jets have been impressive at times, and have even looked good, I think Chicago is going to frustrate them from the beginning of this contest and record a solid victory.
Bob: Chicago
Terry: New York
Mike: New York
Mike Jr: Chicago
Molly: New York
Gus: New York
Sam: New York

Minnesota at Philadelphia (14½)“How come you don’t have a laser, Woody?” “It’s not a laser. It’s... It’s a little light bulb that blinks.” “What’s wrong with him?” “Laser envy.” Not good… nothing but favorites so far. And yes, here’s where that changes. Two touchdowns is just too much. And while I grant you, that isn’t a really solid basis for a decision, the fact is, I didn’t see an Eagles team win last week… I saw a Giants team that imploded. The Eagles haven’t won by this big a margin at home… and, honestly, how much can you believe winning by more than 14 when the two times it was accomplished it was against Jacksonville (in the beginning of the season, when the Jaguars weren’t scoring at all) and Washington (a team that stinks, plus in that amazing and perfectly played game)? I can’t. It’s not that I don’t think the Eagles are a playoff-worthy team. They are. I just don’t think they are championship level. I half expect an upset… I fully expect a close game.
Bob: Minnesota
Terry: Philadelphia
Mike: Minnesota
Mike Jr: Philadelphia
Molly: Minnesota
Gus: Philadelphia
Sam: Philadelphia

Baltimore (3) at Cleveland“Terrain seems a bit unstable. No readout yet if the air is breathable. And there seems to be no sign of intelligent life anywhere.” “Hello!” After defeating New Orleans and New England, Cleveland went back to being blah. Sure… they won a couple. But nothing impressive. Seems like an easy situation… take the team that needs the victory and don’t worry about it. There is more to consider though. The Browns have been on the road for 3 weeks. They do look better at home. They score more at home… and this Ravens team likes to give up points, despite any rumors you here (based on old reputations). But, even if they show up and care… like a team giving some effort for future growth… do I see the Browns winning? No. I do not. And with a 3-point spread, you go with the team you expect to win.
Bob: Baltimore
Terry: Cleveland
Mike: Baltimore
Mike Jr: Baltimore
Molly: Baltimore
Gus: Baltimore
Sam: Cleveland

Tennessee at Kansas City (4½)“What would you say if I get someone else to watch the sheep for me tonight?” What I saw last week from Kansas City was a team that is very capable of winning their last two and making the playoffs. They are perfect at home (and likely need to finish that way to make the playoffs) and base everything off of good defense and not turning the ball over. Solid enough for me.
Bob: Kansas City
Terry: Tennessee
Mike: Kansas City
Mike Jr: Kansas City
Molly: Tennessee
Gus: Tennessee
Sam: Kansas City

Washington at Jacksonville (7)“Hey, who’s got my hat?” “Look, I’m Woody! Howdy, howdy, howdy!” Guess how many times… out of 9 losses… the Redskins have lost by 7 or more. Kind of a trick question… because the answer is 4, and there’s no significance to that. It isn’t once… say in that demolition delivered by Philadelphia. And it isn’t 9… as in all the time. It’s 4. And it’s been on the road and at home. Kind of vanilla really. But, for kicks, guess how many times they’ve lost by 3 or less. And here’s where for me that big loss question becomes funny. Because the answer is 3 times. And of their 4 wins, 3 were by 3-points. In short… because the Redskins don’t score, they win close games. But, they also lose close games. It really is a strange team. And great running game… playing better lately… chance to still win the division or not… the Jaguars have still been outscored on the year by 46 points. As much as people are trashing Washington right now and going crazy, I saw a team that staged a terrific rally last week that fell short. Something is going on… with all the press focusing on negative happenings… but there may be some good here. I’ll go with a close game or Washington victory.
Bob: Washington
Terry: Washington
Mike: Washington
Mike Jr: Washington
Molly: Jacksonville
Gus: Washington
Sam: Washington

Indianapolis (3) at Oakland“It’s... it’s bed sheets!” “Who invited that kid?” The Colts need to win out to make the playoffs. A loss here and Jacksonville… even with a loss… isn’t done. I don’t expect the Colts to lose.
Bob: Indianapolis
Terry: Oakland
Mike: Indianapolis
Mike Jr: Indianapolis
Molly: Indianapolis
Gus: Indianapolis
Sam: Indianapolis

San Francisco at St. Louis (2) “Ages three and up! It’s on my box! Ages three and up! I’m not supposed to be babysitting Princess Drool!” A very strange game to consider. Losing records… weak division… should be a who cares kind of game. But the Rams enter with a rookie quarterback that is, at most, getting limited attention due to all sorts of factors (see above… losing, the division in 2010, who cares kind of games), but positive attention when it happens. And… get this… with games remaining against San Francisco and Seattle… the Rams do control their own fate. Two wins equals playoffs. Easy as that. Now… I’ve tried to do the math, which gave me a headache… and I think something crazy like two victories, Seattle losing this week, and then a Seattle-St. Louis tie in the finale would actually get the 49ers into the playoffs. I could be wrong… might not take a tie since two victories for San Francisco and a loss for Seattle some place gives Frisco a better division record… but honestly, the NFC West doesn’t deserve this much attention and really focused, attentive math from me. The big thing is… simply put… both teams care here. My bias is for the Rams… and that’s what we need to explore for a second. Is it justified? Or, emotion? At home, they lost to Arizona in week one. But… the other losses were to Atlanta and Kansas City (no real shame there). San Fran is 1-6 on the road… the victory over Arizona… and only once have they put more than 20 on the board when they travel. (27 against Arizona… 20 against Carolina (in a loss)… and then 16 and 14 are their highest road outputs.) I say justified.
Bob: St. Louis
Terry: St. Louis
Mike: San Francisco
Mike Jr: St. Louis
Molly: San Francisco
Gus: San Francisco
Sam: San Francisco

Detroit at Miami (3)“It’s too short. We need more monkeys!” “There aren’t any more! That’s the whole barrel!” This Detroit team knows how to create problems for people. Lots and lots of problems. 2-point road loss to Green Bay. 3-point road victory last week over Tampa Bay. And here… well… only Carolina has scored less points than Miami. (Tell me when you’ve heard enough. And remember, I haven’t even pointed to Miami’s 1-6 record at home yet.)
Bob: Detroit
Terry: Miami
Mike: Miami
Mike Jr: Detroit
Molly: Miami
Gus: Detroit
Sam: Detroit

Houston (3) at Denver “What if Andy gets another dinosaur? A mean one? I just don’t think I can take that kind of rejection!” I’m taking the Broncos for no other reason than Houston sucks. S… U… C… K… S… sucks, sucks, sucks. If I talk myself into it, pick the Texans again and they pull yet another stinker while doing mind-numbingly stupid things, I will scream. Should Houston win? Yes. Should you bet on them? Not if you like your money.
Bob: Denver
Terry: Houston
Mike: Houston
Mike Jr: Houston
Molly: Houston
Gus: Houston
Sam: Houston

New York (Giants) at Green Bay (3)“Now Buzz, what could Andy possibly get that is worse than you?” “Oh, oh, what is it? What is it? Wow, a puppy!” An absolutely disgraceful loss for the Giants last week, and here they are playing a team that gave a valiant effort against New England. Plus… let’s remember… Giants tend to be streaky… Packers getting their starting quarterback back.
Bob: Green Bay
Terry: Green Bay
Mike: New York
Mike Jr: Green Bay
Molly: New York
Gus: New York
Sam: Green Bay

Seattle at Tampa Bay (6)“Mrs. Potato Head… Mrs. Potato Head… Mrs. Potato Head... hey, I can dream, can’t I?” Yeah… the Bucs are asking alot if they want us to think of them as a playoff contender at this point. Simple math is they need to win out, and then watch the Packers and Giants fall in some fashion. And… like a gift from the heavens… they get the Giants against the Packers (so one of them should lose), and a club visiting them that gives up a ton of points and doesn’t score alot. I wish them luck.
Bob: Tampa Bay
Terry: Tampa Bay
Mike: Tampa Bay
Mike Jr: Tampa Bay
Molly: Seattle
Gus: Seattle
Sam: Tampa Bay

San Diego (7) at Cincinnati“I don’t believe that man’s ever been to medical school!” I want Kansas City to win out. I will cheer and yell and applaud Kansas City if they win out. I do not expect San Diego to help and lose this week.
Bob: San Diego
Terry: San Diego
Mike: San Diego
Mike Jr: San Diego
Molly: San Diego
Gus: Cincinnati
Sam: San Diego

New Orleans at Atlanta (2)“Sheriff, this is no time to panic.” “This is a perfect time to panic! I’m lost. Andy is gone. They’re gonna move to their new house in two days. And it’s all your fault!” Awesome game. These two teams could each be the top seed in the NFC. And, honestly, I think they are the best two teams in the NFC. But one will be a division winner and one will be a wild card. I like the Saints to win here, but Atlanta needs to protect a 2-game edge for the year to take the division… and that looks like a pretty good bet right now.
Bob: New Orleans
Terry: New Orleans
Mike: Atlanta
Mike Jr: New Orleans
Molly: New Orleans
Gus: New Orleans
Sam: Atlanta

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Mike: Last week 8-8, currently 114-100-10
Gus: Last week 9-7, currently 106-108-10
Bob: Last week 5-11, currently 106-108-10
Molly: Last week 9-7, currently 104-110-10
Terry: Last week 4-12, currently 99-115-10
Mike Jr: Last week 5-10, currently 94-105-10
Sam: Last week 10-6, currently 94-120-10

If you have any comments or questions, please e-mail me at