Wk 11, Seahawks +7.5 at Pats – SNF.


The team of Howard Schultz and Richard Sherman versus deplorable Trump endorsers.  One of the easier all-play selections we’ve had.


Please use the form to enter your picks as you make them.  As we’re all watching the standings movement closely, it’s helpful to know it’s an accurate picture.  More fun too.  This is particularly important at the top of the standings.  I’ve lately noticed that there have been some standings-impacting hits made mid-week that might not be entered until the weekend.  I’ll enter thread picks that haven’t made it into the spreadsheet where I notice them, but it’s hit/miss.  Thank you!


$150 to the top slate(s) for this week.  Let me know if you’re ready accept remuneration with Bitcoin (!), always an option from this side.  Otherwise PayPal works; I’ll also cut checks and mail if that’s what it takes.  Help me disburse this pile of $4700-odd dollars I’m sitting on!  Reminder:  weekly payouts are down this year because 10% of the pot has been diverted to the regular season winner.  (Second place monies are also smaller.)  See the bottom of the SUM sheet in the workbook for rudimentary accounting.

Added a column to the standings that show overall against the spread pick rates for the upper end of our stack.  They’re done manually and current through week 10.  If you notice a disconnect between ATS rate and standings placement,, that’s your essay pick impact.

Quite a big week nine for movers.  Three for three on POTYs (now 19-4 as a group) plus Lobsterfests for Pate and PJ.

I’m really enjoying watching this horserace unfold with quite a few new names up top.  (I believe I’ll begin withholding calling out specific players from here on out due to my well-known Jonah power… but you know if you’re doing well and so do the rest of us.)  I’m certainly enjoying watching more than I have playing this year… but hey WEEKLY PAYOUTS.

screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-12-42-06-pm screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-12-41-50-pm

Early Tues/Wed lines:  EMU at Ball, PK; WMU -21.5 at KSU; Tol -7 at NIU; BG +9 at Akron.  The Wednesday lines are locked here in the color jpg; disregard the Wednesday line in the pdf.screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-11-55-25-am

Download (PDF, Unknown)

Late lines pending:  NCST/Syra; USM/ODU; UNM/USU; Bears/Bucs.

  • pheasantpants

    Essay: NYG -1

    Ok, trying to get in an essay under the wire and it won’t be easy. Cincinnati is just not a very good team. It snatched a tie from the jaws of victory against Washington, and one of its three wins was against the always excellent Cleveland Browns (thanks to the, uh, Jets and Dolphins for also being somehow less competent than the Bengals).

    The Giants also lost to the same Washington team that Cincinnati tied, but the Giants have seemingly found their rhythm, winners of three straight. And by the way, they are the only team so far to notch a victory over a certain Dallas Cowboys squad that looks for all the world like a Super Bowl contender. I would argue that there was no great shame in losing back to back road trips to Minny and Green Bay, two places that are always tough for road teams, when those two teams were in much better shape than they are right now. The Giants have an excellent passing attack, and that seems to be the key to success for most NFL teams this year. I like the Giants in a practical pickem

  • UncleBuck


    Pats -7.5 over seahawks

    NE with an extra week to prepare for this game, while Seattle coming off a Monday nighter where they made Tyrod and Bobby Woods look like superstar. I don’t anticipate this game to be close, and that will start by Russ Wilson’s inability to score. Jimmy Graham is their most dangerous weapon, and BB will find a way to take him out of the game. I think NE will pull away, and should win by double digits.

  • PJD19

    Essay NE -7.5

    Give the Pats an extra week to prepare for a game and it makes beating them an even bigger ask. Throw in that the Seahawks are coming across the country on short rest after a tough Monday night game against the Bills and this one is really stacked in NE’s favor. As a Bills fan i was impressed by Jimmy Graham, who appears to back to his old form. But Seattle’s run game is almost non-existent and their pass protection is really weak. Their defense doesn’t seem nearly as dominant as it once was and I just think they’re prone to getting badly in Foxboro.

  • pheasantpants

    Seahawks +7.5

  • Not sure how people can be riding the steelers today, when every measurable other than “experience” favors dallas today. Rolling with Dak & Zeke.


  • clayII

    Pit (-2.5)
    NE (-7.5)
    Mia (+4)
    Phil (-1)

    monday night essay

    • clayII

      Bengals (+1)

      Stupid ass stats I love to fade

      The home team has won the last 9 in this series
      Dalton 1-5 in prime time road games

      A few I like

      Giants last in rushing yards
      Giants last in turnover ratio
      Bengals also better at getting at qb statistically, even with Burfict missing three games

      I think these stats are all legit because I found them on the internet

  • Lucy Lawrence

    1. Browns L
    2. BC L
    3. Essay: Troy W
    4. Chiefs +3
    5. All Play: Pats -7.5
    6. Back later with last play

    • Lucy Lawrence

      6. Dallas +2.5

  • Concierge

    Ill take pats

  • HitTheHorns

    Pick of the year: Steelers -2.5
    The Cowboys, one of the most Joe Public teams we have, are 7-1 and 7-0-1 ATS. We see this happen in college from time to time (Mike B’s Auburn Tigers of a few years ago come to mind), but tough to find a comparable to this Cowboys team. And they look awesome. Last week was a debacle for Pittsburgh, no doubt. I will trust that Big Ben got healthy this past week and will be the Ben we all know and hate with his back against the wall at home. Playing at the level Dallas is playing is just difficult to maintain week to week in the National Football League. Steelers have lost three straight, but with 2 Browns games still on their schedule they will be in good shape if they can win this game. Ben gets a new weapon with the debuting Ladarius Green, and he should pay immediate dividends. If I have to go out this year, I’m fine going down swinging with the Steelers at home in a kitchen sink game.

    Saints -2

    Jags +1.5

    • damn, just saw this! good luck!

  • Matt Borcas

    Washington State to start things off

    • Matt Borcas

      Saints, Vikings, Packers, Patriots

  • 1. Louisville -34.5
    2. Michigan -22
    3. Washington -9
    4. Falcons +1
    5. Packers -2.5
    6. Pats -7.5

    Essay: Michigan -22

    Other than Clemson, the top playoff teams are handling their business today with no issue. I expect Louisville, Michigan, and Washington to all do the same, but I feel most confident about the Michigan pick. Have I really watched either team this year? No. But what I see in looking through their seasons is that Iowa scored a total of 14 points on Rutgers. I feel as though Iowa should be able to score more than 14 points on Rutgers if they’re going to keep tonight’s game within 22. Now maybe that game was in a downpour or some other extreme weather element, don’t know and don’t care. Even in looking at all the other games Iowa seems to have trouble scoring on average defenses and Michigan’s is far above that. I think Michigan keeps their momentum going in a big way tonight, likely trying to match what Ohio State did one week ago, and easily wins/covers this game.

  • oxr

    College pick: Washington -9 over USC

    • oxr

      All-Play Pats -7.5 over Seahawks

      Cowboys +2.5 over Steelers
      Chiefs +3 over Panthers
      Chargers -4 over Dolphins

      Essay Packers -2.5 over Titans – It’s probably a trap, but I don’t see anything I like better than those two-and-a-half points. The Packers are on a miniature skid, but should still be able to score against a not-particularly-good Titans defense – if not, I think Aaron Rodgers will have to stop appearing in so many commercials. I’m fully on board the Marcus Mariota bandwagon for the long term but have to concede that he’s been throwing some unforgivable picks this season. Mike McCarthy should be pulling out all the stops to try to save his ass, also.

  • from concierge via text (1133am):
    “… Gimme Miami OH, WVU, Charlotte. And Chiefs tomorrow. Thanks man”

    • i dropped charlotte from this; allplay pick is pending.

  • John

    Just got back for Portland…and yes…I was the lead protester…smashing car windows…but I was actually doing it for a purpose.
    I was protesting the ladies there. They don’t shave their legs.

    like ever.

    and it makes me mad.

    first pick
    Illinois +26 to Wisconsin.

    • John

      Washington -9 to USC.

      • John

        Washington has been mopping teams up at home- winning by an average of 32 points (#research).

        They look good.

        I was with a friend this weekend who had an extra ticket to this game- but I needed to get home to do laundry…but he told me this fact:Chris Peterson, after signing his extension, took his family to Cracker Barrel for breakfast the next day. and while there – he told the manager that he thinks the Washington offense still hasn’t had a perfect game.

        I think this game – after getting into the playoff, show up big. and have us all looking for another game to look at by halftime.

        • John

          no commentary. no emotion. just picks

          Steelers -2.5 to Cowboys
          Saints -2 to Denver
          Falcons +1 to Eagles
          all play- Pats -7.5 to Seahawks

  • Peter Markos

    PATRIOTS -7.5

    The Pats are rolling. I will bet against them maybe after I lose. God that hurts. Bellicheck supported Trump. More pain.

    The Saints have a great quarterback. The champion Broncos do not. The Denver defense is showing cracks. Last year was last year.

    South Florida had a bye. Expect them ready to play and heeled up. Memphis cant keep up with the Bulls O.

    Michigan is eating the Big 10 up. They should stay focused today. The big game is still 2 weeks away. Iowa was a sleeper pick for the play-offs.

    Nebraska will try to bounce back from last week’s trouncing. Minnesota can help them with their self esteem.
    The Cardinals are playing the 49ers. The Bay area is blessed the Browns are doing their tear down. I’m mot sure what is worse. Completely consistently sucking like the Browns, or building a winner and screwing it up like the Niners did.

    POPOVICH 2020

  • gaso (loss)
    idaho -7
    ***colorado -16
    man arizona hasnt given up less than 34 to an opponent since september and that was 28 to hawaii. meanwhile their total offense is 75th in ncaa. i saw a write-up about wazzu’s new DC and how suddenly a mike leach team is committed to playing defense. ohhh-kayyy but i won’t rule out that holding arizona to seven points says as much about the zona team’s state of mind as it does the cougs’ commitment to defense. did you know zona is 113th 3rd down converts and on defense they’re 125th in 3rd converts allowed? these are fairly highly-recruited players and probably chose zona over say iowa for a party in nice weather with a coach who won’t beat their asses in practice. and that’s fine, but it doesn’t translate terrifically on the field when playing against a serious team. colorado is serious about demonstrating they’re serious.
    also giants -1 and pats -7.5 and who else…. bears -1.5.

  • Lucy Lawrence

    1. Browns L
    2. BC +21 L
    3. Essay: Troy -1

    What a fun match up against the top teams in the sun belt conference. App St getting pts is the sexy pick here. Ever since they beat Michigan they have been on everyone’s radar. I’ll give them credit they have been a legit team for a long time, however, I think Troy takes them down today. Troy is 25th in scoring vs App St being 130th. That’s a great recipe to win..just out score the other team. Troys QB has thrown for 18 TDs and 7 picks and I trust he continues that against App St’s defense. Troy just needs to get a few stops and they will be on their way to a win…and most importantly a cover!

    • three essays covering both sides of the top sun belt game. love it.

  • TS_Butler

    USC +9

    • TS_Butler

      Eagles -1
      Chiefs +3
      Giants -1
      Seahawks +7.5
      ESSAY: Chargers -4

      This is a tough week to try and pick 5 NFL games. A bunch of close spreads, and a lot of couple point road favorites, it’s a strange week indeed. But since I have to write words about one of them, I chose San Diego. The Chargers have played a lot of good teams, and played them all closely, if not flat out won. The Dolphins have shown all season that they are not a good team, despite their 4-4 record. I’d be a bit worried that the Chargers are going to feel let down that their city doesn’t want them, but then I remembered Phillip Rivers is a psycho who would sell 4 of his 7 kids for the chance to run the 2 minute drill. Go Bolts.

      • TS_Butler

        Sorry, I forgot to submit my NFL picks this morning on the form. You asked me to do one thing… Changing my all-play to Pats -7.5

  • squeekycleen

    Essay: Jags – Feels like I’m on the jags every week. Wait, I am on the jags every week. They are painful to watch and have been predictably inept but will try yet again here. Jags off crap performance but backdoor cover and season now really circling drain. With perhaps a little less pressure, maybe they perk up a bit. I’ll take a chance they do and can grab a home win against the schizo Texans.

  • thatsfine

    It’s America, it’s Saturday, and there’s still mediocre FBS Group of Five football to enjoy. I feel melancholy for many reasons entering Cheddar Bay Week 11. One of which: we are entering the most fun and compelling part of the football calendar, but the Cheddar season is more than half over. It’s like being 13 and the clock hits 5pm at Cedar Point. Still plenty of fun to be had, but most of the day is behind you.

    Buffalo +11 – Miami U has won 4 in a row, crushing the spread along the way. This feels like the right spot to go against them on the road in a letdown spot.
    Troy -1 – App State has been the best, most reliable Sun Belt team the past 2 years. But, Troy is the team to beat this year. If the Trojans can avoid mistakes and the defense shows up this game is theirs.

    • thatsfine

      BGSU essay – W
      UNLV +7.5
      Nevada +23 – And now I’m saddled with rooting for both UNLV and Nevada on the same day.

      • thatsfine

        Seahawks +7.5

    • bupalos

      >>>It’s America>>>

      Is it though?

      • thatsfine

        Yes, perhaps more than ever.

  • HitTheHorns

    Oregon, Indiana, Patriots

  • bupalos

    Something about the events this week have me looking for bedrock institutions that would be capable of saving the nation from the random tantrums of an angry spoiled toddler. I kind of feel like The United States Navy might be up to the task. We’ll probably get to see. And Tulsa is a pretty good stand-in for the transformation from a stout-if-tattered hempen flag blowing proudly in the ocean breeze, to a tangle of blinking red, yellow-white, and purple light bulbs drooping from the top of the “Muslim-Free” gun store in Okraha Oklahoma. For the rest of teh essay, I would just like you to insert the nastiest string of invective you’ve ever heard, followed by the sound of Sean Hannity masturbating while chewing on a live kitten. Or as Fox News calls it, Thursday night.

    Navy +1

    • thatsfine

      OK, I just followed your instructions. Now I’m going to clean the gutters to make myself feel cleaner.

    • bupalos

      Let’s toss in WV+2 at Texas
      And I’ll sneak in Okla -15 to the Sex Offenders.

      • bupalos

        And even though a tree versus a duck is a very hard thing to envision, I’ll go ahead and give the 3 on Stanford.

  • trashycamaro

    Chiefs +3 over Panthers Not believing in that Panther resurgence just yet

    Rams +2 over Jets We are back to getting points against the Jets? Works for me.

    Steelers -2.5 over Cowboys Ben always comes back a week too early. Making some noise this week with Le’veon, Antonio and the rest of the gang.

    Pats -7.5 over Seahawks Not believing that Russell’s ankle /knee/pecs etc. are ready yet.

    LSU -7.5 over Arkansas Arkansas d-line <<<<<< Alabama d-line. Show me that Fournette!

    Essay Falcons +1 over Eagles Feels like taking candy from a baby. Looking at the numbers, it appears that this is a good matchup, best offense vs. best defense, mediocre defense vs. mediocre defense. Unfortunately, the wheels are so far off the Wentz wagon at this point, I don’t think the past numbers tell us quite enough. The numbers all seem to balance, and Wentz ostensible doesn’t hurt the #1 defense. That said, I think the Falcons will be able to keep their offense on the fied, wearing out the Eagles defense, and the pick your poison between Julio and the receiving backs out of the backfield will be too much for the Eagles to keep up with all game.

  • cwonder23

    Missy St +30 @ Alabama
    Oregon +3 vs Stanford
    USC +9 @ Washington
    Texans -1.5 @ Jags
    All Play: Seahawks +7.5 @ Pats
    Essay: Broncos +2 @ Saints

    Classic bounce back week after a key conference game against a worthy Raiders team. With the Raiders in command of the division right now, I think Kubiak will have his players ready with the importance of a key road win on their minds. While I don’t expect Siemian and the offense to lift the world in fire, I think Brees will find himself on his back too many times in this game. The Broncos win as they keep pace with the surging Rrrrrrraaaaaaiiiiiddddddeeeerrrrs. I like the Broncos on the road in this one by at least a TD. Broncos 24 – Saints 14

  • Chris Schroeder

    Picks this week with Essay pass week….

    Essay: Old Dominion
    San Diego State U

  • zizzer13

    After whiffing on the Kent State/Western Michigan essay, here’s the rest of my crap for the week…

    AP Pats -7.5 over Seahawks
    Northwestern -14 over Purdue
    Wisconsin -26 over Illinois
    Army +13.5 over Notre Dame
    Washington -9 over USC

  • Galea Minor

    Seahawks +7.5 at Pats (All-play)
    Pittsburgh +21 over Clemson
    Penn State -7 over Indiana
    Iowa +22 over Michigan
    Titans +2.5 over Packers
    Rutgers +13.5 over MSU (Essay)

    I can’t for the life of me understand this line. I’m sure that means that MSU is poised for a big gut check win now, but I wouldn’t take MSU -13.5 over Hillary for America.

    I think the issue might be that MSU has really only played 2 games that were watched by anyone nationally, Notre Dame and Michigan. And they looked good against ND and ok against Michigan. The team doesn’t show up against anyone else, but I see the logic. “MSU was only 9 points worse than Michigan, and Rutgers and Illinois lost huge in that game, so MSU is clearly better.” Well the MSU team that scrapped its butt off against Michigan is not the real MSU. And with MSU finding a way to lose to Jeff George Jr. despite being a 7.5 point favorite in that game, this feels like the closest thing to easy money.

    In some ways it’s actually annoying to see MSU just blatantly trading on reputation. They aren’t tough, they’re poorly coached, they have no leadership, and all their QBs are battling injury. Wake up people. MSU sucks. I won’t go so far as predicting the outright Rutgers win (they suck too don’t get me wrong), but no one’s winning anything by 2 TDs here.

  • FTCMikeD

    Remainder of Picks:
    AIR FORCE -5.5 over CSU
    Illinois +26 over WISC
    Mich -22 over IOWA
    JAGS+1.5 over Texans
    My essay and all-play is going straight for the Pats. They were on a bye last week. Seattle played on Monday Night and then had to fly the 6 hours / 3000 miles to Boston. The Seahawks defense has been nothing to close to what it was when the won the Super Bowl. And Belichick will have had EXTRA time to look for weaknesses in it. Executing those plays is Tom Brady, who ho-hum has no interceptions on the year along with 12 TD passes.

    I’m sure there will be some extra motivation considering some people think the Seahawks may have used deflated footballs in last week’s game. http://ftw.usatoday.com/2016/11/deflategate-seahawks-bils-kickers-footballs-jon-ryan Seahawks, more like Cheathawks, amirite? I have no doubt though that the NFL used the utmost diligence in investigating the matter and measured the proper pressure of every ball in that game…

    Anyways, the Patriots are firing on all cylinders this season, especially since Brady has come back. The ‘hawks have been a little inconsistent and Russell Wilson seems to be battling some kind of injury and are on a short week + travel. Look for the Patriots to cover the 7.5 points.

  • zarathustra

    Browns (L)
    Lord knows I’ve picked the pats a lot times here over the years but my opinion is they are a little overrated this year. They are still really good and probably the best team in the league, but the defense isn’t even close to what it was when they won the super bowl a couple years ago. Wouldn’t play this in real life but this number seems too high.
    Broncos are on the second leg of back-to-back road games and without Talib and Wolfe. The saints should be able to score and it’s hard to see the broncos offense keeping up right now.
    I’m a depraved person for many reasons. Not least of which being the extent to which I miss Big East football. Holgorson vs Strong was a perennially good matchup. I like Holgorson but always thought Strong the better overall coach. Plus, Texas is home and it seems like the team is playing hard for Strong, hoping he keeps his job.
    The Hawkeyes aren’t good and they are surely experiencing a letdown after last year, but….they are home at night coming off a blowout loss. I couldn’t be happier to take the three touchdowns here.
    LSU was impressive in the loss last week, but I think it is fair to say they are pretty beat up. Huge letdown spot anyway. The interim coach they were playing hard for is most definitely not getting the job now. They have struggled with Arkansas for years. They are at a tremendous disadvantage at qb compared to the hogs. But they are giving a touchdown on the road for a night game?

    • CLEVTA

      Arkansas D is 125th v the run. Bad news v Fournette

      • zarathustra

        Very good point. It is a terrible matchup for Arkansas. I will not be surprised if Fournette goes for 200 yards. At the same time I would counter that their d numbers are influenced by having faced three teams in the top 21 in rushing yards per game–auburn, bama, A&M. They also were a terrible spot vs auburn so that didn’t help. Also, during their bye they moved some guys around up front. Looked good last week but that doesn’t say much. Even with the bad matchup I don’t think LSU should be laying this number in this spot.

      • zarathustra

        You were right on with this. Disregarding it was egregious oversight on my opinion end. Moreover, I was terribly wrong about the qb comparison. The LSU d made Allen look like a lost he jv qb. Thanks for the feedback. Wish I would have listened.

  • Capitalgg

    [All-play] Patriots -7.5 v. Seahawks: Seattle D showing tired last week. Pats an amazing 5-1-3 last 2 years as 7+ point favorite.
    1. Bengals +1 @ Giants
    2. Falcons +1 @ Eagles
    3. Louisville -34.5 v. Wake Forest
    4. Washington -9 v. USC
    [Essay] Saints -2 v. Broncos (no write week)

    Other Considerations
    Pitt +21 @ Clemson
    Penn St. -7 @ Indiana
    Louisville -34.5 v. Wake Forest
    Miami (OH) -11 @ Buffalo
    Air Force -5.5 v. Colorado St.
    Wisconsin -26 v. Illinois
    Colorado -16 @ Arizona
    Rutgers +13.5 @ Michigan St.
    West Virginia +2 @ Texas
    Chiefs +3 @ Eagles

  • jdoepke

    Pats +7 (AP)
    Indiana +7
    Navy +1
    Virginia +10.5
    Iowa +22

    Essay: Oregon +3

    Tough slate this week but I’ll take the Ducks at home catching the points. Oregon is 3-6, Stanford is 6-3 and the line is 3, seems low. Over 70% of bets for Stanford, yet 75% of money on Oregon so I’ll go with the (hopefully) sharp money. Oregon late 30-28.

  • Jmacdaddio

    Washington -9
    UVA +10.5
    ECU -7
    UCLA -12

    AP Pats -7.5
    Titans +2.5 (Essay)

    What a week. I scored in my adult soccer game last Saturday. A perfect corner kick off my head and into the corner of the net, putting a dagger into the heart of the opponents with 25 minutes to go.

    Oh yeah, there was an election too.

    This week is where fantasy meets reality. Marcus Mariota has turned out to be a steal. He was my team’s backup QB until Cam Newton started getting hit too much. He’s putting up 35 points a game. David Johnson of the Cardinals was the other steal of the draft. Yeah, he’s my starting RB. Good thing I spent five minutes prepping for my draft. I only do fantasy to stick it to my competitors who are already trying to optimize next year’s draft to account for a bye week long snapper.

    The Pack for some reason is just not the sure thing they were. Losing at home to Dallas was a bellwether game in my opinion. They are not quite in the league elite. Good, but not good enough to beat the Titans on the road by a field goal. Plus they’re going against my fantasy starting QB, so clearly they will not win.

  • Hawkaholic

    Iowa is playing Michigan tomorrow in front of a national tv audience, the same Iowa that a week ago was embarrassed by Penn State. The Rustlers made mention of Harbaugh’s revenge dating back 31 years. I am sure you all remember that was #1 vs #2 with Iowa winning on a last second Rob Houghtlin FG sparking pandemonium and the emptying of kegs all over Eastern Iowa. Being an Iowa fan forever this just feels like a game we hang around in and should cover the spread with no issues. I can see this being a 1 possession game and then we will get taken to the woodshed by Illinois this week. As coach Ferentz says, “thats football” but alas i can’t pull the trigger. i was all set to take the Hawks and the points until i was reminded of the game 31 years ago. There is no question Michigan is light years ahead of Iowa and i think Harbaugh pours salt in the wounds and Michigan wins BIG.

    On to the picks:

    Penn State -7 @ Indiana
    Louisville -34.5 vs. Wake Forest
    Kansas +10 vs. Iowa State – two real bad teams here, i am praying Kansas can make a play or two and beat Iowa State, i really would like to see them finish 1-11
    Eagles -1 vs. Falcons
    AP: Pats -7.5 vs. Seattle
    Essay: Nebraska -7 vs. Minnesota

    I’m not sure but i think Tommy Armstrong may have been killed last week, i am hopeful he does not play against Minnesota. He has been a turnover machine his entire career and i think the backup gives them the best change against Minnesota. Both teams are 7-2 which is a disappointment for one and an absolute thrill for the other. Nebraska was flat embarrassed last week and at the end of the day still have an outside chance to win the west. Minnesota is a bit of a faker, i don’t think they are really that good, i mean Iowa beat them at home for god sakes. Nebraska runs the ball very well and i think the Black Shirts control the line of scrimmage and force Leidner into a lot of 3rd and longs. Nebraska 26, Minnesota 7

  • mmmmsnouts

    ALL PLAY: Patriots -7.5 vs. Seahawks

    Utah -5.5 vs. Arizona State (W)
    Navy +1 vs. Tulsa
    Illinois +26 vs. Wisconsin
    Falcons +1 vs. Eagles

    ESSAY: Michigan -21 vs. Iowa

    I essayed against Iowa a few weeks ago because they’re right back to their usual mediocre selves after a magic season last year. Nothing has changed that opinion. Since Kirk Ferentz forgot how to count against Wisconsin, they had two weeks to prepare for Penn State and still got annihilated. Somehow that game was not as close as the 41-14 score. Now here comes the Michigan death machine into Iowa City, in need of style points to keep their chase for a higher playoff seed on course. The Hawkeyes have scored 14 or less in four in their last six games, and I’m pretty sure the Wolverines can get theirs.

    By the way – the California/Washington State over is a big play for me. Currently hovering around 82.5 or 83 at the sportsbooks. Grab it and run.

    • mmmmsnouts

      Just saw this was 22 and not 21. Don’t care, still my essay. Iowa is incapable of backdoor covers.

  • Brian

    Penn State
    Notre Dame
    Boise ***ESSAY***

    It basically comes down to this…Boise has a good football program and hawaii does not. Boise should have a field day against this piss poor defense. McNichols will pound the rock and run up and down the field. Rypien will be able to put on a clinic as well and the Broncos should score every time they touch the ball. I just dont think a team should ever call themselves the rainbow warriors…EVER! This should be a blowout and i should get these 3 points to keep me sitting pretty in this first year playoff run. BOISE FOR 3 PLEASE

  • Dave Borcas

    Colorado State +5.5
    Wyoming -7.5
    Tennessee -13.5
    Seattle +7.5 (all play)
    South Florida -3 (essay)
    The busiest person at this game should be the scoreboard operator. Both teams can score some points. Both these defense’s will give u their share of yards. USF is coming off a bye week and Quinton Flowers is rested and ready to roll. The USF running game can break a game open in a hurry, Memphis is more of a passing team which plays into SFU’s defensive strength, if you want to call it that. Riley Ferguson has picked up where Paxton Lynch left off last year. Both these teams are still playing with a chance to get in their conference championship game. Memphis leads the all time series and won their meeting last year. SFU 45 Memphis 38.

    • actovegin1armstrong

      Would you call Lynch a “system quarterback”? The broncos let Rottweiler go to the Texans in free agency and drafted him in the first round in the same year.

  • GRRustlers

    Week 11 Picks

    Cards (-13) over 49ers – Cards at home off a bye week with the LSU coach coming to town? Sign me up.

    Colorado (-16) over Arizona – Colorado was really really awful last week and was saved by their defense and the fact that UCLA stinks. Expect a big bounce back vs a broken Arizona squad.

    Michigan (-22) over Iowa – Harbaugh has had a mental circle on this game for 31 years.

    USC (+9) over Washington – Shhh… *The best team Colorado has seen all year is USC*

    AP – Patriots (-7.5) over Seahawks – How has nobody in the Seahawks organization (preferably their kicker) told Richard Sherman to just shut the hell up and admit it was a bad look. Nobody? The best part is the guy thinks he is a victim now. How do you make the Patriots freaking likeable?

    Essay Pick

    So…how many Michigan State essays have we had this year? Deafening silence. Is there a risk in taking an MSU team favored by almost 2 scores that has had enough injuries to field a team that would beat Fresno. Of course there is but that’s where this gets fun. Mark Dantonio is too good of a coach to lose 8 straight football games. Rutgers has shown flashes the last two weeks and has come close to getting a win but I’m going to play the other side here and bet on the bottom falling out this Saturday. I think the players that are left for Sparty rally around coach and win a game big at home in their last real chance for a victory this season with Penn State and Ohio State waiting.

    Michigan State (-13.5) over Rutgers

  • Chris P.

    Ole Miss +10 Texas A&M
    Rutgers +13.5 Michigan State
    Appalachian State +1 Troy
    Boise State +17.5 Hawaii
    Patriots -7.5 Seahawks

    So last week we scored on a huge overreaction, as TCU whooped Baylor. So… naturally… with the world going batshit, cooler heads prevailed when lines were made, and oddsmakers and gamblers realized that it was just a fluke outlier, and this week we could have a more reasonable Baylor line… one that respects the quality Oklahoma team they are playing, but also realizes that aside from a pasting of Kansas, for a top 10 team, Oklahoma hasn’t really beat the tar out of a ton of teams. One that recognizes that despite a bad loss, Baylor is still ranked, still capable of going toe to toe with good Big 12 teams, and…


    I’ll process the election in one of these soon – but for now my reaction is “We got what we had coming to us, and when you abandon the little guy you’ll never win.” Especially when you nominate the one person on earth more disliked than the other guy. And no one is going to flock to you when you call them woman-hating-racists for even thinking of voting another way.

    Baylor +15 Oklahoma

  • CLEinMSP

    Stanford -3
    Georgia +10.5
    Miami -10.5
    Vandy +3.5
    Seahawks + 7.5 (All Play)
    USC +9 (Essay)

    USC is pretty hot since they blew the game against Utah at the end of September. They’ve scored 40+ points in each of their last 3 games, and they have a stud WR. Washington has had a couple of small scares this year, but otherwise it’s been smooth sailing for Christ Peterson and Co. Historically in college football, things start getting weird in November. Everybody has plenty of tape on everyone else, some teams start to really gel, etc. USC is going to be a tough out tomorrow. I think they hang around, and while Washington may win, I’ll take USC and the points in a close game.

  • Matt Lawrence

    Duke +10.5 (W)
    BC +21

    • Matt Lawrence

      Troy -1

    • Matt Lawrence

      Western Kentucky -28

    • Matt Lawrence

      Pats -7.5 (All Play)
      Chiefs +3 (Essay)

      Let’s not overreact to the Panthers finally winning a game. The Rams are flat out horrible. I’ll take the Chiefs +3 over the Panthers. KC is always is always in a must win situation with the Raiders and Broncos playing in that division. Alex Smith is back under center after getting out of concussion protocol and he has been playing at an MVP level since the 3rd week of the season. I also expect that KC pass rush to get to Cam Newton. And if last week proved anything, the refs still don’t give a damn about calling roughing the passer penalties on Cam.

  • LittleBallofHate

    Already down one with WMU not covering.
    Not much to say — OSU (-29), Michigan (-22), Falcons (+1)
    All Play — Patriots (-7.5)
    Chargers (-4) vs. Dolphins
    About three weeks ago I thought that San Diego would represent one of the few hopes for a Browns win, but Philip Rivers and Company have been on a nice run as of late. The Dolphins have played better too but a huge key to that has been their running game. This week the Fins face the third-ranked run defense in the AFC in San Diego’s. Miami would have somewhat of a shot if it had a balanced offense, but Tannehill is terrible. Look for the Chargers to get back to .500 and the Fins to go back under .500.

  • RCLA

    West Virginia + 2 – better team + points
    Tennessee -13.5 – They’ll win by as much as they fell like, which isn’t always a good thing.
    KC + 3 – better team + points
    AP: Seattle + 7.5 – I’ll be in Seattle when this is played, so picking the Seahawks gives me a reason to yell directionally at the television when I might otherwise have no reason to do so.
    Steelers -2.5 – the lesser of my two “things revert to preseason expectations” games.

    ESSAY: Green Bay -2.5 – the greater of my two “things revert to preseason expectation” games. Like, look, its Aaron Rodgers v. the fucking Titans. That’s not even an acceptable name for a football team. Sounds like W.R. Hearst and the Incredible Hulk’s illegitimate daughter getting made fun of at school. Anyway, GB is still good against the run which Tennessee keys everything off of. Mariota is not an upper half of the league pocket passer. And Tennessee’s defense is mediocre. Obviously it would help if Rodgers had people to throw to who weren’t crippled, but that’s been the state of GB football the last couple years. They aren’t a title team, but they go 9-7 or 10-6 or because Aaron Rodgers + parts. Winning 9 or 10 games means beating Tennessee on the road. I’ll take my chances laying the 2.5.

  • Navy +1 vs. Tulsa
    Wyoming -7.5 vs. UNLV
    AP: Seattle +7.5 vs. Pats
    Washington -9 vs. USC
    Saints -2 vs. Broncos

    **Essay** Illinois +26 vs. Wisconsin
    Wisconsin hasn’t even put 26 points on the board in any of their last five games. The Fighting Illini are 3-0 against the spread away and within the Big 10. I don’t think any of those things will be changing this weekend. Wisconsin is coming off a lackluster performance against Northwestern and I just don’t know what could be different this weekend.
    Have you heard about Jeff George Jr.? With their starting QB (or two?) injured, JGJ will be filling in. He also happens to be the son of Jeff George, one of Illinois’ more illustrious quarterbacks; he was the first overall pick of the 1990 NFL Draft. It’s in JGJ’s gene pool. The force is strong.
    Since Illinois doesn’t play Ohio State this year (lucky Bucks), this is their chance to spoil. Smith would love to get a little bit of the R-E-S-P-E-C-T he deserves during his first year at the helm. I think Wisconsin will underestimate Illinois, and they look pretty ragged after what has been a grueling schedule. Illinois., on the other hand, is looking fresh – with JGJ, a confidence boost after beating Michigan State, and not having had to face LSU, Michigan, and OSU. Just saying.

  • pateslvrblk

    PSU -7
    Steelers -2.5
    ***Pats -7.5
    Seattle at Patriots, 2015 super bowl rematch. But do you remember when the last time these two teams got together in the regular season? That would be the year 2012 when Richard Sherman was barking at Tom Brady as he left the field in Seattle following the 24-23 defeat. Don’t think for one second that Brady has forgotten about that game. This is a horrendous spot for the Seahawks who are playing a non conference opponent, on the opposite side of the country, on a short week following a Monday night game. The Patriots who are 4-0 against the spread since Brady’s return from suspension and coming off the bye this week. Seattle’s offensive line is not gonna hold up in this situation.

  • actovegin1armstrong

    Since most of us are going to be deported anyway, may we play the Canadian Football games next year?

    • mmmmsnouts

      The best part of the CFL is finding your favorite random college players lighting it up. I mean look at this!


      Bo Levi Mitchell? Rakeem Cato? Zach Collaros? It’s like a who’s who of system quarterbacks from 2010.

      • actovegin1armstrong

        mmmmsnouts, That makes perfect sense, I remember those guys. Nothing will change. I can ignore Canadian Football quarterbacks too!

  • actovegin1armstrong

    AP pats -7.5
    Indiana +7
    **** appy st +1

    • actovegin1armstrong

      That should be Iowa st -10

      • actovegin1armstrong

        ****Appy essay****
        The Troy quarterback, Phil Silvers or something like that, looked bad thwarting Clemson and their mad rush to commence Clemsoning themselves when big things were expected from them. Troy not only let Clemson out of a classic Clemson trap game, but they shot themselves in the foot in the process. The foot of their overrated running back Jordan Chunn. Now we may have to wait for Clemson to Clemson themselves at Saban’s feet. Troy also had to rely on luck to win a very ugly game over Massachusetts. U Mass is really a bad team, like within the realm of Texas State horrible. Troy’s delusional quarterback bragged about how they beat U Mass by more than 3 SEC teams beat them. Last time I checked it only counts as a win and quarterbacks still talk to much.
        Appalachian State has a better defense than Troy, they spend more time running across to the wrong side of the field and that should work for them against Troy because the Trojan’s do not have a lot of guile on offence to make appy’s aggression work against them
        Appy St has plumbed the depths of ugly play as well occasionally, but I shall certainly take the +1. It may be Haircut 100, or just a tennis term, but I like love +1

        • p_forever

          admit you only took appy st as your essay because i did 🙂

          • actovegin1armstrong

            I admit it. However I am not brave enough to be a National Park Service Ranger. Most of our National Parks are in rural, very red voting areas. Those red area people are completely crazy.

  • FTCMikeD

    Browns tonight +10

  • Lucy Lawrence

    1. Browns +10

    • Lucy Lawrence

      2. Boston College +21

  • pheasantpants

    FSU -21
    Browns +10.

    • pheasantpants

      Rutgers +13.5
      WVU -2

  • Dave Borcas

    Utah -5.5 tonight

  • ChuckKoz

    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28
    Utah 41, ASU 28

  • p_forever

    pats -7.5 seahawks
    washington -9 usc
    lsu -7 arkansas
    stanford -3 oregon
    w va +2 texas
    app state +1 troy***

    the cover story of the appalachian magazine – the official magazine of the appalachian state university – is “want to be a national park service ranger? here’s how.” you know what? yes. yes i do want to be a national park service ranger. in fact, nothing sounds better than getting lost in being a national park service ranger. it’s a job that involves extended hours in areas that have zero cell phone reception or access to the internet, plus lots of invigorating physical exercise of the sort that leaves your mind and body feeling good and pure, which is exactly how i do not feel after what went down on tuesday, and what’s been going down in this country for the past 6 months, and especially after what i think might be about to go down in the next 4 years. i am all in on park rangering, and all in on a place that is making park rangering a priority. app state +1 please.

    • bupalos

      You might want to apply quickly. Winter is coming:

      “Congress shall immediately pass universal legislation providing a timely and orderly mechanism requiring the federal government to convey certain federally controlled public lands to the states.”

      • p_forever

        truly terrible :/

  • Matt Lawrence

    Duke +10.5

  • Nick

    Illinois +26 vs Wiscy
    Saints -2 vs Broncos
    Falcons +1 vs Eagles
    Cowboys +2.5 vs Steelers
    Seahawks +7.5 vs Pats

    POTY – Browns +10 vs Ravens

    The Ravens are 4-4, and have not scored above 30 points this season. In the four victories, they have won by 6, 5, 2, 7 points respectively. They are the definition of mediocre, and the browns are the browns so we have a spread of 10, understandably.

    After getting owned by the Cowboys at the line of scrimmage, it’s a perfect time for a short week for the Browns to forget and move on. They usually play the Ravens well, and Thursday night games are almost always trashy and unpredictable, which is perfect a perfect spot for a POTY.

    I don’t think the Browns have given up hope yet. Maybe Kirksey’s comments will help the team this week, and another week with Collins in team meetings can’t hurt. I think Hugh is doing the best he can, and I hope they can get Coleman involved early. So here’s to Hugh and Cody emptying the playbook to get this cover. Browns will need to convert a few 4th downs or fake punts to account for the 4-5 inevitable pass interference calls Flacco always seems to get on the Browns.


    1. ASU+5.5

    • CLEVTA

      2. Seattle (all play)
      3. LSU -7.5
      4. Mizzou -3.5
      5. Steelers -2.5
      6. Indiana +7 (essay): I’m still not a true believer in Penn State. PSU has only played 3 road games, at Pitt, Michigan and Purdue losing 2 of those 3. Indiana has always been scrappy at home and play tight games against ranked teams historically. IU has not lost at home by >8 in over 2 years. Penn state can run the ball but Indiana is ranked 23rd in Pro Football Outsiders rush D S&P ratings. IU covers and wins outright

      • CLEVTA

        Please switch my steelers pick for eagles -1.

    Please use the form to enter your picks as you make them.  As we’re all watching the standings movement closely, it’s helpful to know it’s an accurate picture.  More fun too.  This is particularly important at the top of the standings.  I’ve lately noticed that there have been some standings-impacting hits made mid-week that might not be entered until the weekend.  I’ll enter thread picks that haven’t made it into the spreadsheet where I notice them, but it’s hit/miss.  Thank you!

  • zarathustra

    The AFC goes through foxborro and in my opinion the Ravens are the only team that can win there in January. Tonight they get the opportunity to build on their division lead and a I think they will, but their offense is not very good right now and 10 points seems a bit high. I’ll take the browns for a point.

  • ga southern
    i wish i had enough grist to make this into an essay, maybe i do, let’s see. ga southern just stayed within 10 of ole miss while laffy was losing at home to relegation bound idaho. (no offense idaho, youve actually been playing extremely well, considering.) gaso does do that run heavy offense that is hard to get into and is especially noxious once you lose the lead (looking at you army) and laffy plays a stout enough run D (29th). but stats… ull’s decent run D came against texas state and sala… gaso managed 260 at oxford. and then there’s the big green star in scores/odds preview and that their power rating says gaso -19.
    nah, too easy and too gunshy. need to test whether im still costanza-mode enabled. probably need to come back with an idaho play or the nfl which has been strangely friendly to me this year. one point only on georgia southern.

    • see? SEE??
      christ almighty.

  • Troy Bunting

    ***Essay Pick
    New Orleans Saints -2
    Essay pick this week is based on Saints trends and statistics, and the bronco defense being shorthanded. Saints have won 3 of their last 4 with good quality wins. Drew Brees is still a stud, and the saints put up points at home. A likely contribution to the Drew Brees passing yards and touchdown count this week is the personnel that Denver will be leaving in Denver. As of Thursday AM, both Aqib Talib and Derek Wolfe are out, leaving Roby to get beat up again and freeing up the NO line and backs to hold off Von Miller. Brees blows the broncos up!

  • mmmmsnouts

    Utah -5.5 for a point tonight.

  • Harbaugh Handshakes

    Browns +10**
    Panthers -3
    New England -7.5
    Packers -2.5
    Carolina -10.5
    Penn st -7

    I’ll take the browns to cover tonight on Thursday night football. The ravens beat the steelers last week. But that result is misleading. Big Ben is notoriously awful when returning from injury and that trend continued. The ravens were losers of 4 straight and have yet to beat a team by more than 7 all year. Add in the fact that these Browns will play hard for their coach and are desperate for a win. The Browns will continue their way of keeping it close and cover.

  • On the road this week so this essay will be quick but give me the Browns +10 over the Ravens for my vote of the week. I loved Christian Kirksey’s postgame comments last week and how insistent he was that this team wouldn’t go winless. Also just the feeling with which his message was delivered. These guys have to know that this is probably their best chance to get that win, and maybe they don’t get it, but maybe they do get a backdoor cover. Also, Corey Coleman looks like a major boss and one of the best picks of the first round (at least early) and I really like what I’ve seen and heard of Kessler as well. And I have to work all weekend anyway so might as well get my big vote out of the way early.

    Duke +10.5 over UNC, too.

    Back with more later this weekend.

  • thatsfine

    BGSU +11 – essay

    Rolling with my yearlong contention that, aside from WMU, there isn’t much difference between “good” and “bad” teams in the MAC. 5-5 Akron has a streaky QB and porous defense giving up 504 yards/game. I can’t see giving double digits to anybody in the MAC, not even 1-8 BGSU. In fact, if you compare their season average stats across the board these teams are quite similar: Akron/BG total offense 405/386, Rushing YPG 131/132, Total Defense 497/505, passing D 262/278. Looks like mirror images. Akron has more consistent QB play and Woodson is capable of putting up bigger numbers than BG’s James Morgan who is mistake prone (14TD/12INT). But BG has a better RB and has been serviceable in losses to EMU by 3, at Toledo by 7, at OhioU by 6. I think both teams score plenty of points and Akron wins. Happy to see this line crossed 10, so give me the points and a late BG cover.

  • actovegin1armstrong

    1 vote for Toledo

  • actovegin1armstrong

    1 vote for WMU -21.5

  • FlyHighCharlieFrye

    ESSAY: Western Michigan -21.5

    Some serious boat rowers, these guys. They look like a Big Ten team and pound the ball behind huge humans up front like one as well.

    This is more about Kent State being awful, and this game being played in front of 50 people, and Kent State’s star safety being put in jail this week on some crazy charges — and his twin brother being the quarterback. How can they stop this boat? I’m not sure they can.

    Western has crushed everyone in this league, and Toledo is the realistically the only team that should play within 2 touchdowns of them, so I gladly lay a shade over three touchdowns here because even with some goofy bounces Kent is going to struggle to score and Western is on national TV and isn’t afraid to go for style points. I don’t love this spot (which is why this isn’t POTY) and I’m sure no one will take Kent, but I also see no reason it’s not at least a 28 point difference tonight.

    • FlyHighCharlieFrye

      Got nothing to lose. And nothing to do.



      1 point apiece

      • FlyHighCharlieFrye

        Seahawks all play
        West Virginia +2
        Saints -2

  • agnesbojaxhiu

    EMU essay-no essay week

    • agnesbojaxhiu

      Boston College

      • As noted above, Agnes is switching from BC to FSU. She’s driving at the moment so I’m putting it in for her.

      • agnesbojaxhiu

        I’ve had a lot of angst about this all play, but now feel silly spending so much time on a one point vote (technically I should feel silly spending as much time as I do on my cheddar hobby). Seahawks for the lobsterfest

  • Concierge

    WMU essay

    Gimme the Broncos in this beautiful election night mid week MACTION play. Too easy here IMO> Heres why…. And I love Paul Haynes and KSU.. hell they were my POTY earlier this year… BUT…… Nate Holley… Nate Holley.. Nate Holley.. and oh by the way did I mention Nate Holley?? Team captain. two time 1st team all mac DB… OUT.. The heart and soul of the defense is gone for this game because he decided to kidnap a girl last week. (prob not a good idea). Kents defense is all that gives Kent a chance in this game… He made so many plays from his safety spot and without him tonight they are going to be in a bad way. PJ Fleck is brining the Broncos to national TV and a chance to continue to climb the CFB playoff rankings with a strong performance. Corey Davis is a beast btw.. ROW THE BOAT

    • had to drop chiefs and need to give us a pats/seahawks pick.

  • Rolling with the MACtion early.

    EMU PK. Chris Creighton and I go way back to 2007 when we played against eachother in the D3 playoffs. He was the coach, I was the quarterback. I like the guy, and I think he’s a solid ball coach. And here, straight up, on the road where EMU tends to cover and at home where Ball State doesn’t, I’ll take my chances. High-scoring affair decided by less than a touchdown, but EMU just needs to keep up with Ball State’s running game.

    $$$ TOLEDO -7. $$$
    I have completely bombed my last two essays, one as a result of not clicking “post” on this thread, and the other by simply forgetting it altogether until my only options were the last two NFL games of the week, neither of which appealed. Not looking for pity, just venting at my own forgetfulness (did have at least 3 concussions during my career…so there’s that?).

    Back on the train though with this pick and I feel REALLY good about it. Toledo still has a chance to take the MAC West if they win out-tough task with WMU waiting for them a few weeks from now, but it’s not out of the question. Toledo quietly has one of the better QB’s in the country that absolutely no one is talking about in Logan Woodside. And at this point in life, no one can say anything about the level of competition in the MAC not translating to the NFL. Beside him in the backfield is fellow Willoughby South alum, Kareem Hunt, who’s been an animal since he stepped on campus there. They’ve got 4,000 offensive yards and 40 touchdowns between them, and I just feel that the firepower they bring is too much for NIU on every level.

    NIU ended Toledo’s unbeaten run last year, but this year, their three wins are against opponents who are a combined 7-20, with some of the worst defenses in the country. Toledo ain’t so. Rockets are throwing up 50 in this one, and NIU won’t keep pace.

  • zizzer13

    Been refreshing this page all morning so I can get in on some sweet, sweet essay MACtion…

    Western Michigan is pretty damn good. PJ Fleck’s done a hell of a job making that program the class of the MAC and in position to grab the “best-of-the-leftovers” spot in a New Year’s bowl, and possibly even moved himself into contention for a step up in the second spin around the coaching carousel – you know, to replace Tom Herrman after he gets snapped up by LSU (ETA: some Big Ten school’s going to be tempted to overpay for him because they haven’t learned their lesson yet about MAC coaches. Looking your way, Purdue…). So yeah, good on him – it’ll be great to see how he tries incorporating his “row-the-boat” mantra in a red-and-white color scheme.

    Beyond that, Kent State is terrible. They already got their miraculous win of the season last time out, coming from behind against Central Michigan in their tour of the Directional Schools. They have no offense, and their quarterback is a converted running back. He’s also the brother of their starting safety, who, just so happens, allegedly tried to kidnap someone last week – so forgive me if I wonder who’s going to come up with the dozen or so tackles he tallies each week. Vegas could throw another touchdown log on this flaming turd of a game, and I’d still take the Broncos.

    Western Michigan -21.5 over Kent State

  • LittleBallofHate

    One Cheddar Point on Western Michigan please #TuesdayNightMACtion

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