Welcome to the weekly Patch NFL Pick 'Em, where Fair Lawn residents and wannabe NFL prognosticators , Steve Brown and offer up their picks for three games each week, and dish out a little fantasy football advice to boot.
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This week's games are:
San Diego (7-7) @ Detroit Lions (9-5)
Philadelphia Eagles (6-8) @ Dallas Cowboys (8-6)
New York Giants (7-7) @ New York Jets (8-6)
Stuart Pace’s Game Picks:
Detroit, Philadelphia and New York Jets
Detroit Lions over San Diego Chargers -– Well, it's time now for teams to show us what they are made of. Detroit is not going to run the ball. They don’t have that ability right now. But they have a Two Guys (I miss that store) that are slinging it and catching it like they are playing sandlot football. Narvelous Norv and Philip down by the lazy Rivers have a knack of not going anywhere when they need to. Call it Santa’s Christmas Gift to my pal Luke Frey, but I think Stafford and Johnson make the Chargers pay late in the game….like they always do. Motor City Playoffs.
Philadelphia Eagles over Dallas Cowboys -- The Eagles smoked Dallas early in the year and watching them play the last few weeks, I don’t think anything will change. They aren’t beating teams now, they are pulverizing them. Anthony Romolumus is gonna be on his back so much Sunday he is going to ask the Philly D line to leave the money on the night stand when they leave. No gut feeling, this is Philly doing what we thought they would do to begin with this season. Philly by a Texas mile.
New York Jets over New York Giants -- On the upside, I don’t have to watch either NY team this week and the Sunday Ticket will have my attention rather than the local Fox network.
I have to believe the Giants with Peyt oops Eli Manning are the better team, but their secondary sucks. On the other side, the defending Super Bowl champion Jets (riiight, Rex) have an awful QB who won’t be able to take advantage of said suckitude. But Stephen “The Mouth” Brown is trying to stay ahead now that he has the lead. And I did peek at his Giants/Jets pick. So I am going to hope, though I hate them the most, the Jets win. Thus creating a tie going into the last weekend.
Upset of the Week
Seattle Seahawks over San Francisco 49ers -- This has not been my strong suit, so based on past experience I am taking the Seattle Seafoams to beat the 49ers and leave them sleepless. No reason other than I love watching Marshawn Lynch run through walls of guys like Super Mario.
Tim Tebow, QB (DEN), Bust of the Week -- He has come to earth (nooo, not Jesus) and the unfriendly confines of Rich Stadium (is it still called that?) will not be kind to Tiny Tim. Scrooge won’t meet the ghosts and Tim won’t be saying, "Merry Christmas, everyone."
Steve Brown’s Picks:
San Diego, Philadelphia and New York Giants
San Diego Chargers over Detroit Lions – Simply put, Calvin Johnson is the reason the Lions are 9-5. Without the MegaOne, the Lions would be 5-9, not the surprising 9-5 they are right now. He singlehandedly won the game for them last week with a performance as dominant as possible from the WR spot. But, they struggled to beat the Raiders while San Diego rolled like the Southern California ocean waves over the tough Baltimore Ravens. San Diego has the Megaclone in Vincent Jackson, and Malcolm Floyd can do a decent impersonation of Calvin at times. My money is on the Rivers flowing into the end zone and that pesky Eric Weddle picking off Stafford in a crucial spot... SAN DIEGO UBER ALLES!
Philadelphia Eagles over Dallas Cowboys -- Could you pick two teams I hate more? No! You could not. Even if you throw in MLB, NHL, NBA, English Premier League Soccer and all the teams I played against in intramurals, Little League and in pre-school kinder-gym.
The only team in history I may have hated more was those damn Yankees, not the New York Yankees but (1970s movie Spoiler Alert) the ones that beat the Morris Buttermaker-led Bad News Bears. So it hurts me to think either of these teams will be happy at the end of this one.
My guess is the Eagles, who when push comes to shove I hate one scintilla less than the Cowgirls, win this one on momentum and a crushing Jason Babin fourth quarter sack of Tony "OhNo" Romo. Truth be told I wouldn't mind it going the other way and having a crushing Demarcus Ware sack of both Michael Vick and Vince Young, who refusing to give way to each other both took the snap from center, win it for the Cowgirls. But for the record I ride on the Wings of Eagles.
New York Giants over New York Jets -- I had the distinct pleasure of sitting in the upper deck of the New Meadowlands last Sunday -- freezing my Pattokies off and listening to disgruntled Giants fans scream homophobic slurs at Eli Manning. Stay classy you crazy kids. Of course I've been at the Old Meadowlands and watched fully grown Jets Fans scream at a 7 year old in a Colts jersey. Way to support your team fellas.
I believe picking the best QB in any game will win you way more than it will lose you, and I get the added bonus of getting the best pass rusher and backflipper in the game to boot. I'm down with JPP and I don't believe the horrible things those ruffians in section 320 were saying about Elijah.
The Giants win. The Jets lose. The love affair with Imperius Rex starts to disappear though everyone will still blame Little Brian Schotty, the inexplicable Coughlin hatred continues on unabated. Giants with a win that ruins Fireman Ed's Christmas. Green is the color of Jealous Grinches.
Upset of the Week
Arizona Cardinals over Cincinnati Bengals -- I'll take the Grinch over Whooville! I'll take the Heat Miser over Frosty the Snowman. I'll take Dave over the Chipmunks. I'll take The Abominable Snowmonster over Yukon Cornelius and I will take the Cardinals to peck the Bengals into submission for no reason other than I like that visual image.
C.J. Spiller, RB (BUF), Sleeper of the Week – Perhaps this is wishful thinking from an old Clemson alumnus, but C.J. Spiller finally had a big game last week. He averaged 7.6 a carry and showed flashes of the explosiveness that made him a high draft pick. I think he just might carry that momentum forward this week. So give me C.J. and consider me a Spiller-man, especially after a couple of Festivus drinks.
Marshawn Lynch, RB (SEA), Bust of the Week -- Marshawn Lynch has been on a tear but the NFL's 8th leading rusher sees his string of good games torn asunder, yes asunder, by the highly motivated, agile, hostile and mobile San Francisco 49ers. Woot Woot, Rich. I'm on the bandwagon for realz now!
Zak Koeske's Picks:
San Diego, Philadelphia and New York Jets
San Diego Chargers over Detroit Lions - The Lions come-from-behind win last week against the Raiders may have been just enough to sneak them into the playoffs, but they don't deserve to be there. They certainly haven't played like a playoff team over the last two months.
On the other hand, the Chargers are heating up at the right time thanks to the improved play of Philip Rivers (0 INTs in his last 4 games) and a solid defense.
The Bolts have yet to face an offensive juggernaut during their current 3-game winning streak, but they have the firepower to combat anything Stafford and Megatron throw at them. If they win out and reach the playoffs, I wouldn't want to face them if I were an AFC team.
Philadelphia Eagles over Dallas Cowboys - The NFC East finally belongs to the Eagles, like it was expected to since Day 1. They're still lagging in the wins column, but there's no doubt they're playing the division's best football right now.
Another month of games and they'd take over the division lead. Unfortunately for them, they don't have another month of games. Time is on the side of the Cowboys, who are just praying they can fend off the Eagles and Giants to hang on to a playoff spot. This game won't help them any.
New York Jets over New York Giants -- Maybe it's the Steelers fan in me, but I find the Jets to be just an all-around awful team to watch. Their players aren't likable or exciting and I'm frankly amazed they ever win games. Which is why it really surprises me that I'm picking them to win this week (and also did last week, ugh).
I'm going with the Jets because the one thing they do well is defend the pass -- which coincidentally is the only thing the Giants have going for them -- a strong vertical attack.
In the battle of offense versus defense, I'll take defense every time.
Upset of the Week
Jacksonville Jaguars over Tennessee Titans -- The Titans got beat handily by the 0-13 Colts last week. What makes anyone think they can handle the Jags, who beat them earlier this year? MJD takes pleasure in playing spoiler in this one.
Jabar Gaffney, WR (WAS), Sleeper of the Week – Gaffney is one of those middling WRs who you take in the final rounds of a fantasy draft every year when you don't know who else to pick because you can be pretty sure he'll consistently get you 50 yards per game -- nothing more, nothing less. As soon as the games begin and those guys who nobody knew turn into legit fantasy plays, Gaffney gets sent packing to the waiver wire, where he remains the rest of the year.
Well, I'm telling you to pick him up this week because he's actually relevant right now in the Redskins' passing attack. Fred Davis is out and Gaffney is taking on his looks. He's got a TD in him this week against the hapless Vikings secondary.
Donald Brown, RB (IND), Bust of the Week -- Excited about Donald Brown's 161-yard outburst last week against the Titans? Don't be. He ain't doing it against the Texans.
About Stuart Pace:
Stu has been played fantasy football for more than 15 years and also spent a number of years hosting a Fair Lawn TV show called "Electric Football" with Steve Brown. He's currently in four leagues. A die-hard Miami Dolphins fan ("The Dolphins make me cry"), Stu has a Miami Dolphins tattoo and a Dolphins cause bracelet ("The lost cause").
About Steve Brown:
Steve was co-host of "Electric Football", the highest-rated NFL-related YouTube video series shot in Fair Lawn that we are aware of. When he's not producing that cult favorite, he spends way too much time crying quietly in the closet after Viking's losses. Steve has come in second place in more Fantasy Leagues than anyone he knows of since he started playing in 1992, and is still famous among his friends for the ill-fated KiJana Carter No. 2 overall pick.
About Zak Koeske:
Zak's a 9-year fantasy football veteran who has made a tradition of producing pre-season Power Rankings and crafting league write-ups for his personal league the past few years. This season he took part in his first auction-style draft, and is still trying to recover from the damage of spending all of his money on his first four picks.