Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Week 4 NFL Picks


We have started the season with three correct Knockout picks, but all three of those teams are expected to be 10-win teams.  To win a Knockout Pool, you have to pick a couple of questionable teams to survive because it is a long, grueling 17 weeks and there might be about 12 teams to reach the 10-win plateau this season.

This week’s pick: Baltimore defeating Cleveland

Another maxim of a Knockout Pool is to avoid rivalry games because you learn to expect the unexpected.  Let me put my cliché hat on for a second.  Every time two teams that “don’t like each other” kick off, you can “throw out the records” because on “any given Sunday”, any team can win.  Baltimore, though, on prime time at home is as solid a bet as you can have.


Here are the game picks for this week.  We also have a “Sports With the StatMan” entry in the ESPN.com Pigskin Pick ‘Em for games against the spread.  We talk about the local games and the three of the other most important games, our “Big Games”, on our weekly This Week in Fantasy Sports segment on Saturdays, but we pick every game, every week.  Here they are:


Last Week: 3-1 straight up, 2-2 against the spread
Season: 7-5 straight up, 5-6-1 against the spread
Week 4 Picks:
New England at Buffalo – Straight Up: NE, Against the Spread: NE (-3.5)
San Francisco at N.Y. Jets – Straight Up: SFO, Against the Spread: SFO (-3.5)
N.Y. Giants at Philadelphia – Straight Up: NYG, Against the Spread: NYG (+2.5)


Last Week: 3-0 straight up, 3-0 against the spread
Season: 8-2 straight up, 8-2 against the spread
Week 4 Picks:
Carolina at Atlanta – Straight Up: ATL, Against the Spread: ATL (-7)
New Orleans at Green Bay – Straight Up: GBY, Against the Spread: NO (+7)
Chicago at Dallas – Straight Up: DAL, Against the Spread: DAL (-3.5)


Last Week: 7-2 straight up, 5-4 against the spread
Season: 17-9 straight up, 13-13 against the spread
Week 4 Picks:
Cleveland at Baltimore – Straight Up: BAL (Knockout), Against the Spread: BAL (-11)
Seattle at St. Louis – Straight Up: STL, Against the Spread: SEA (-2.5)
Minnesota at Detroit – Straight Up: DET, Against the Spread: MIN (+4.5)
San Diego at Kansas City – Straight Up: KCY, Against the Spread: KCY (+1.5)
Houston at Tennessee – Straight Up: HOU, Against the Spread: TEN (+12)
Cincinnati at Jacksonville – Straight Up: CIN, Against the Spread: CIN (Pick ‘em)
Oakland at Denver – Straight Up: DEN, Against the Spread: DEN (-7)
Miami at Arizona – Straight Up: ARZ, Against the Spread: ARZ (-5)
Washington at Tampa Bay – Straight Up: WSH, Against the Spread: WSH (+2.5)


We are participating in the ESPN Gridiron Challenge on ESPN.com.  The object is to pick the best team possible with a $50 million salary cap.  However, we are adding another wrinkle.  The object of the ESPN.com is to buy low and sell high and the more you accomplish that, the more money you get in your salary cap.  My goal is to put together a nine-man unit (2 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 K, 1 DEF) that is better than another nine-man unit at a similar price.

So far this season, my nine-man squad is 0-3 against a comparable squad:

Week 1: Head-to-Head – L, 124-108; By Position – 2-6-1
Week 2: Head-to-Head – L, 98-73; By Position – 3-6
Week 3: Head-to-Head – L, 103-139; By Position – 3-6

Here is the Week 4 entry in the Gridrion Challenge, our “Start ‘Em” team, along with our comparable “Anti-Start ‘Em” team, which is our opponent for the week:

(all dollar figures in millions)

Start ‘Em Team


Anti-Start ‘Em Team

Peyton Manning DEN ($6.1)
Eli Manning NYG ($6.7)
Matt Schaub HOU ($5.5)
Kevin Kolb ARZ ($5.2)
BenJarvis Green-Ellis CIN ($6.0)
Adrian Peterson MIN ($6.0)
Michael Bush CHI ($5.7)
Ryan Mathews SDG ($5.8)
Miles Austin DAL ($5.9)
Roddy White ATL ($6.1)
A.J. Green CIN ($5.8)
Dwayne Bowe KCY ($5.8)
Owen Daniels HOU ($4.9)
Martellus Bennett NYG ($5.3)
Blair Walsh MIN ($4.3)
Dan Bailey DAL ($3.9)
Seattle Seahawks SEA ($5.2)
Atlanta Falcons ATL ($5.1)
$49.4 million
$49.9 million

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