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NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 8, 2011



NFL Picks (Preseason 2011): 11-4 (+$1,340)
NFL Picks (Week 1, 2011): 5-9-2 (-$575)
NFL Picks (Week 2, 2011): 6-8-2 (-$1,030)
NFL Picks (Week 3, 2011): 10-5-1 (+$610)
NFL Picks (Week 4, 2011): 7-9 (-$970)
NFL Picks (Week 5, 2011): 9-4 (-$270)
NFL Picks (Week 6, 2011): 5-7-1 (-$1,290)
NFL Picks (Week 7, 2011): 4-8-1 (-$820)

NFL Picks (2011): 57-54-7 (-$3,005)
NFL Picks (2010): 144-131-8 (+$6,080)
NFL Picks (2009): 151-124-9 (+$3,370)
NFL Picks (2008): 136-125-6 (+$4,330)
If you don't quite understand the line, total or anything else, go to my Sports Betting FAQ.


Vegas betting action updated Oct. 31, 5:20 p.m. ET. Follow @walterfootball for updates.


Go to Week 8 NFL Picks - Late Games



Indianapolis Colts (0-7) at Tennessee Titans (3-3)
Line: Titans by 8. Total: 43.5.

Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Titans -10.
Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Titans -10.
Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
Discuss Game, Talk Trash

The Game. Edge: None.

Week 7 Recap: My picks have been awful this year. This is my first losing season since 2002. But it's not just me. From what everyone I know in Vegas has told me, almost all of the "wise guys" are taking a beating. Vegas is getting killed by public plays cashing in.

For seven weeks, I had no idea what was going on. But I think I've found the answer. For the tl;dr crowd, I'll bold and italicize key points.

I like to bet on bad teams. This may not sound like a good strategy, but it's worked for me over the years. It's also worked for the sharps. There's lots of value with bad teams because the sportsbooks have to bump up the spreads more than they should when a bad team is either in a good spot or playing another team in a bad spot.

Don't believe me? Most don't, based on some of the e-mails I've received. But bad teams have covered more often than not the past 10 years.

Defining a Bad Team as any team with a winning percentage of .333 or worse starting in Week 4 (when the record begins to indicate which teams are bad):

Bad Teams were 393-365 against the spread between 2002 and 2010 when not playing another Bad Team.

A record of 393-365 ATS isn't something that says you can bet Bad Teams blindly, but that record can become more lucrative if you find those aforementioned good spots and play-against bad spots.

But this year?

Bad Teams are 9-17 against the spread in 2011 when not playing another Bad Team.

The record's even worse if you eliminate covering-machine Carolina, whom I wouldn't categorize as a bad team; just an average team with a great quarterback that has lost close games to good teams.

The point of this is that the bad teams are REALLY bad this year. I think it's because of the lockout. Lacking in talent, these teams couldn't do much before the season to improve themselves or develop some sort of chemistry. They couldn't use the bye week to help themselves either. They can't run as many padded practices as they want to, which also hurts.

It'll be interesting to see if this lingers beyond 2011, but it doesn't look like crap teams like the Rams, Dolphins, Colts, Cardinals and Browns will be covering many games for the rest of the season. I think you can include the Titans as well now that they've lost Kenny Britt.

I'd throw the Broncos and Vikings in there, but they'll probably play better with upgrades at quarterback.

If you're a major stats geek reading this and planning to e-mail me with words containing "regression to the norm" or "statistical anomaly" or "insufficient sample size," please note that this is not about the numbers. Just throw them out if you're at that mindset.

What this is about is the fact that the bottom-tier teams in the NFL this season are worse than the bottom-tier teams of recent years. Saints 62, Colts 7? What the hell is that? And there have only been four teams in NFL history to begin the season 0-6 straight up and against the spread prior to 2011. There are two such teams this year (Rams, Dolphins).

So, this explanation is about the ineptness of these bottom-tier teams. It's not about the numbers. The numbers just reflect how bad these teams are.

And last thing - I really hope that you think this long passage is about making excuses for why I (as well as the top handicappers in Vegas) have been so terrible. I'm trying to find a solution because everything I (as well as the top handicappers in Vegas) have used over the past eight years is no longer working.

Anyway, I'll be posting these NFL Picks throughout the day. Follow me at @walterfootball for updates.

INDIANAPOLIS OFFENSE: What happened at New Orleans was very misleading. The Colts mustered just seven points and looked completely inept on both sides of the football, but they screwed themselves from the start.

Their big mistake was putting Joseph Addai in the lineup. Addai, who didn't practice all week and didn't know what the hell was going on, had to be told where to line up on every play. This proved to be difficult for Curtis Painter amid the deafening crowd noise in the Superdome. As you may have saw, this ultimately led to Jeff Saturday's botched snap and New Orleans' fumble recovery. The Saints scored quickly, eliminating Indianapolis' ability to run the ball because of the early deficit.

The point of all this is that I do not expect the Colts to be so inept this week. The Titans have surrendered 396 rushing yards in their previous two games, so Indianapolis should be able to establish Addai, giving Painter manageable opportunities to convert third downs. Tennessee doesn't have much of a pass rush (11 sacks), so Painter should have a relatively clean pocket to work out of.

TENNESSEE OFFENSE: If Chris Johnson doesn't get going here, he never will. The Colts, renowned for their inability to stop the run, have surrendered an average of 170 rushing yards to their previous four opponents. That's not good.

However, that doesn't necessarily mean that CJ20 will be able to rebound off last week's dreadful performance. Not only does Tennessee's blocking stink; Johnson is indecisive, slow and sluggish. He apparently wasn't working out while waiting for his big contract this offseason. Maybe he thought he'd never get it and would be forced to hold out the entire year.

Of course, it doesn't help that Kenny Britt is on injured reserve. Without Britt serving as a dangerous deep threat, defenses have been able to collapse on Johnson. Matt Hasselbeck predictably has struggled, going 43-of-79 for 366 yards, two touchdowns and three picks in his previous two outings.

RECAP: There is no way in hell I'm even betting a pack of gum on this game. The Colts are terrible and playing in their third consecutive road game, but the Titans also stink and do not deserve to be favored by 9.5 points over anyone (the Six and Six Rule applies). I'm siding with the visitor.


The Psychology. Edge: None.
No psychological edge found.


The Vegas. Edge: None.
Equal action.
  • Percentage of money on Tennessee: 52% (64,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Titans.
  • History: Colts have won 13 of the last 16 meetings (Titans 7-3 ATS since 2006).
  • Triple Roads: Underdogs playing in their third consecutive road game are 5-13 ATS since 2002.
  • Colts are 44-30 ATS on the road since 2002.
  • Titans are 3-0 ATS after losing by 30+ since 2006.
  • Matt Hasselbeck is 12-5 ATS off back-to-back losses.
  • Opening Line: Titans -9.
  • Opening Total: 42.
  • Weather: Normal weather.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Titans 26, Colts 20
    Colts +8 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Over 43.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Titans 27, Colts 10






    Jacksonville Jaguars (2-5) at Houston Texans (4-3)
    Line: Texans by 9.5. Total: 40.5.

    Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Texans -7.5.
    Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Texans -7.
    Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
    Discuss Game, Talk Trash

    The Game. Edge: Texans.

    I'll post the Vegas recap after the hate mail. This first one is from a Facebook "friend:"



    No response from Tom. Damn it.



    Wow. My teachers were right when they said you learn something new every day. I'm an idiot who f***s. Sweet.

    These next three hate mails were by the same person:



    Damn it. Why won't any girl let me suck her a**?



    It's true. And I look like Neil Patrick Harris? That's actually pretty awesome. He gets laid all the time on How I Met Your Mother.



    Patrick stopped e-mailing me after that. I guess all the talk of a** beating brought back some horrible memories from his time in jail.

    Vegas Recap: As for Vegas, the fix appeared to be in on Monday night. The books took another huge beating Sunday with the Panthers, Broncos, Steelers, Cowboys and Saints all covering, so they really needed Jacksonville to come through. Not only did the Jaguars beat the spread; they also broke up teasers because they won straight up. Vegas still had a losing week overall, but it could have been a lot worse.

    I'd recommend staying away from most publicly bet teams this week. The house always wins in the end, so some shady stuff could happen.

    I'll be updating the Vegas betting action all week, as usual. I'll notify you of any updates @walterfootball.

    HOUSTON OFFENSE: The good news for the Texans is that there's a good chance Andre Johnson will be back in the lineup. Johnson recently had surgery on his hamstring, but he's expected to practice this week. Whether or not he'll be 100 percent is another story. We'll just have to wait and see.

    The bad news for the Texans is that they're going up against a stout Jacksonville defense. What happened Monday night was no fluke. The Jaguars prevented the Ravens from securing a single first down in two-and-a-half quarters. The week before, the Steelers scored only 17 points against them, and Jacksonville didn't even have top corner Derek Cox in that contest. Back in Week 4, New Orleans put only 23 points on the board.

    This Jaguar defense is for real. If they can put the clamps on Ray Rice, I don't see why they can't do the same thing to Arian Foster. And if Rashean Mathis is allowed to continue to hit, mug and rape receivers 10-plus yards downfield, I don't see how Matt Schaub is going to have much success throwing the football. Johnson being completely healthy would obviously change things though.

    JACKSONVILLE OFFENSE: Mario Williams' absence was felt at Baltimore two weeks ago, but it didn't seem to matter against the crappy Titans. The Jaguars surrender the fourth-most sacks in the NFL, so maybe Houston once again will be able to skate by without its top defensive player.

    Of course, if the Jaguars can establish Maurice Jones-Drew, the pass rush won't be that much of a factor. The Texans just shut down Chris Johnson, but everyone has been doing that this year. Prior to the Tennessee contest, Houston had surrendered at least 96 rushing yards to five consecutive opponents, so I don't see Jones-Drew slowing down at all. The Texans will play eight men in the box, but everyone has been doing that to Jones-Drew this year to no avail.

    One key injury for Houston: Free safety Danieal Manning just had surgery on his fractured left tibia. Manning's absence will have more of an impact in future weeks though. Blaine Gabbert just isn't good enough to take advantage. He has yet to show anything that indicates he can be a solid starting quarterback in this league.

    RECAP: Lots of reasons to like the Jaguars in this contest:

    1. Jacksonville is underrated. The team has a really good defense and a great running game. Gabbert sucks, which is why this spread is so high. I thought this line should have been +7.

    2. Road underdogs of 6.5 or more points are 26-13 against the spread going into the bye since 2002.

    3. Teams playing a divisional road game attempting to avenge a loss of 14-plus points to the same opponent are 74-51 against the spread since 2002.

    4. As noted below, Jack Del Rio is 7-1 against the spread as a divisional underdog of seven or more.

    LOCKED IN: The Houston Chroncile's John McClain, the most trusted voice concerning the Texans, said Friday that he doesn't expect Andre Johnson to play. Get this pick locked in before Vegas adjusts the spread.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No psychological edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: Jaguars.
    Slight lean on the host.
  • Percentage of money on Houston: 70% (70,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Jaguars.
  • History: Jaguars have won 3 of the last 4 meetings.
  • Jack Del Rio is 7-1 ATS as a divisional underdog of 7+.
  • Jaguars are 5-1 ATS going into the bye since 2005.
  • Texans are 17-31 ATS after a win (11-15 since 2007).
  • Opening Line: Texans -9.5.
  • Opening Total: 42.
  • Weather: Dome.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Texans 27, Jaguars 24
    Jaguars +9.5 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330
    Over 41.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Texans 24, Jaguars 14




    Minnesota Vikings (1-6) at Carolina Panthers (2-5)
    Line: Panthers by 3. Total: 46.5.

    Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Panthers -4.
    Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Panthers -4.
    Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
    Discuss Game, Talk Trash

    The Game. Edge: None.

    Some random NFL notes I can't put anywhere else:

    1. This may not seem like it has anything to do with the NFL, but I promise, it will...

    This is the last week of Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexual Heritage Month. I want to thank all of you who spread the word and made this month absolutely awesome for our Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexual friends, who have been introverts for far too long. We still have a long way to go before Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexuals feel comfortable integrating themselves into society, but we've certainly taken a step in the right direction.

    As you may know, I've declared October to be Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexual Heritage Month because racist media entities like ESPN and NBC shoved Spanish Heritage Month down our throats, ignoring all other cultures, including Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexuals, in the process.

    A few angst-ridden people defended ESPN and NBC's coverage of Spanish Heritage Month. A guy named Perry P. sent me hate mail, even though he's a white college student whose ancestry comes from North Wales.

    That's only natural, since a person from North Wales has great ties to Hispanic culture. However, Perry P. might be taken aback to see what a Mexican e-mailer had to say about this whole thing:

    You know, I wrote to you before, as a reminder I am Mexican, and believe it or not, I don't feel insulted, offended or anything about your comments about Spanish heritage. In fact is so damn funny. LOL, why do people feel offended for that? Even worse, if they are not Latin?

    If you didn't know we don't like Mark Sanchez here, except for some losers out there. It's just a crappy marketing campaign to sell jerseys; we like football with black guys and white guys, yep it's nice when German, "Mexican" or Asian guys play, but it's not important, and everything is said by someone who doesn't live in USA.

    BTW me and my friends love your "racist" comments, the "QB Dog Killer" nickname is awesome, despite I like Vick as a player, I make fun of everything including Vick. I call him "QB Dog Killer" everywhere.

    Your fans should take it easy. If they don't like what you say, they should ignore or not access the Web page, and stop being drama queens.

    Regards,
    Luis A.


    The point of all of this? Mark Sanchez sucks so much that people in Mexico even hate him. But I'd expect ESPN or NBC to acknowledge Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexual Heritage Month before this.

    2. Speaking of Half-Norwegian, Half-Korean Bisexuals, Jim Tressel was shown sitting in the coaches' box during the Saints-Colts game.

    Tressel was brought in as a consultant this season. How's that going for Indianapolis? I wonder what the hell he tells the coaching staff and front office...

    Bill Polian: Jim, we're in a funk. We just lost 62-7. What the hell can we do to turn it around?

    Jim Tressel: How about we pay the players?

    Bill Polian: Umm... Jim... we do pay the players.

    Jim Tressel: How about we give them free tattoos?

    Bill Polian: Jim, they can buy tattoos with all the money they make.

    Jim Tressel: Oh... then I got nothin'.

    Worst. Consultant. Ever.

    3. Two things from the London game:

    First, as forum member Ace High pointed out, the United Kingdom NFL presenter introduced Brad Johnson as a "future Hall of Famer."

    Even Johnson was shocked to hear that.

    Second, a lot was made of the Bears arriving in London five days after Tampa. Many, including myself, thought this would be a huge disadvantage for Chicago.

    But then I thought about it - the Buccaneers had to spend all week looking at British women. It's possible that this made them extremely queasy on game day. Hence, the Bears prevailed.

    CAROLINA OFFENSE: As much as I loathe ESPN, I've enjoyed Trent Dilfer's analysis lately, including what he said about Tim Tebow and how everyone already has a stubborn mindset about him. Dilfer also said that we shouldn't compare Cam Newton to anyone because we haven't ever seen a quarterback like this.

    I completely agree. The closest thing I can think of is that Newton is what Vince Young was supposed to be. He has been amazing. He's making all the throws, showing tremendous arm strength and accuracy. And when nothing's there, he scrambles for first downs.

    I don't see Minnesota stopping him. The Vikings have a shaky secondary and won't be able to cover Steve Smith. Meanwhile, they'll also have trouble stopping the run; the Packers just rushed for about 4.5 yards per carry against them. They couldn't contain James Starks when Green Bay was trying to run out the clock.

    MINNESOTA OFFENSE: Christian Ponder wasn't too shabby himself. He was very impressive in his NFL debut. He made a couple of mistakes when he tossed multiple picks to Charles Woodson, but he showed great mobility in the pocket and good intermediate accuracy, especially on third downs.

    And that was against Dom Capers' defense. The Panthers can't stop anything. They rank 27th against the run and 30th versus the pass. They have just 12 sacks on the year, and they allowed John Beck to look like a really good quarterback.

    Oh, I almost forgot. Adrian Peterson could rush for 200 yards against Carolina's crap stop unit.

    RECAP: This is a tough one to call. I'm going to take the Panthers because Newton has been a covering machine thus far. Besides, the Vikings don't play particularly well outdoors.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No psychological edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: None.
    Why aren't people boarding the Cam Newton bandwagon?
  • Percentage of money on Carolina: 57% (75,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Panthers.
  • Cam Newton is 5-1 ATS.
  • Panthers are 15-25 ATS as a home favorite of 3.5 or more since 2001.
  • Panthers are 28-38 ATS at home since 2003.
  • Opening Line: Panthers -3.
  • Opening Total: 47.
  • Weather: Normal weather.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Panthers 30, Vikings 23
    Panthers -3 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Over 46.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Vikings 24, Panthers 21








    New Orleans Saints (5-2) at St. Louis Rams (0-6)
    Line: Saints by 13.5. Total: 48.5.

    Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Saints -7.5.
    Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Saints -9.
    Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
    Discuss Game, Talk Trash

    The Game. Edge: Saints.

    Four weeks ago, I showed you the following G-chat messages from someone who called himself "The Real John." I also made fun of him:



    I don't know what's more disturbing - the fact that TheRealJohn is "bedding" (a.k.a. having sexy time) with American futbol, or that he actually has "20K" to bet despite the fact that he doesn't know how to spell "betting" or "Walter" or "sure."

    The Real John didn't take too kindly to this. He replied with more incoherent messages:



    I've since determined that The Real John is betting with Zimbabwe dollars (30,000 Zimbabwe dollars equals $1 U.S.) and that he bangs deformed, Asian chicks with unibrows.

    Here is The Real John's latest e-mail, sent a few days after my disastrous Week 6 picks:



    I can't imagine how many Zimbabwe dollars the Real John won betting against my selections last week. Perhaps he won 450,000 Zimbabwe dollars. That would be $15 here - enough to buy a porno mag.

    Once again, I had my hacker friend access The Real John's Web cam to take a snapshot of the two chicks he was with. Here are the two lovely ladies:



    "Great night of my life ever?" With those two babes, how could it not be?

    ST. LOUIS OFFENSE: This spread opened up Saints -15.5 +115 on 5Dimes. I guess they're assuming that Sam Bradford is going to be out once again.

    Adam Joshua Feeley is one of the top backup quarterbacks in the NFL, but he can't be expected to keep up with New Orleans in a shootout. If the Saints establish a big lead, they're going to put immense pressure on Feeley, who is playing behind an offensive line that has given up the most sacks in the NFL (23).

    If the Rams want to compete, they'll have to pray that they don't fall behind early and be forced to give up on the run. They can establish Steven Jackson fairly easily; the Saints are 31st versus the rush, surrendering 5.7 yards per carry this year. Even the Colts managed 144 rushing yards on just 21 carries against them Sunday night.

    NEW ORLEANS OFFENSE: The only way the Saints don't light up the scoreboard is if they shoot themselves in the foot with dumb penalties and careless turnovers.

    I wish I could make this more complicated, but the Rams just don't have the manpower to contain most teams, let alone New Orleans. St. Louis is using 80-year-old Al Harris extensively because it has so many injuries in the secondary.

    The Rams are even worse against the run, ranking dead last in that category. They're yielding 5.9 yards per carry, and just nearly allowed DeMarco Murray to break the NFL single-game rushing record.

    RECAP: I would never recommend laying two touchdowns on the road, but if I had to wager money on this game, I'd take the Saints for reasons I explained in the opening passage of this picks page. The Rams are unbettable right now.


    The Psychology. Edge: Rams.
    The Rams are desperate for a win. The Saints, meanwhile, could be more focused on their upcoming games against the Buccaneers and Falcons.


    The Vegas. Edge: Rams.
    Despite this super-high spread, there's still a ton of action on the Saints.
  • Percentage of money on New Orleans: 87% (89,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Rams.
  • Saints are 4-10 ATS as double-digit favorites under Sean Payton.
  • Opening Line: Saints -13.
  • Opening Total: 47.5.
  • Weather: Dome.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Saints 38, Rams 6
    Saints -13.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Under 48.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Rams 31, Saints 21






    Arizona Cardinals (1-5) at Baltimore Ravens (4-2)
    Line: Ravens by 12. Total: 43.

    Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Ravens -13.5.
    Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Ravens -11.5.
    Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
    Discuss Game, Talk Trash

    The Game. Edge: Ravens.

    Last week, I showed you a random e-mail from a Steven Dunning (assist@fuse.net):

    Please are you going to accept my biz offer?

    Hmm... how intriguing. I had to e-mail Steven back instantly:

    I spit on your offer. I do have a counter offer to propose to you, however.

    I will offer Marvin Gardens, Ventor Avenue, St. Charles Place, B&O Railroad and a Get Out of Jail Free card in exchange for Park Place. I know this will give me the dreaded Park Place and Boardwalk monopoly, but think about it for a second. You'll have a monopoly on yellow and purple, and you'll also have three of the four railroads. Plus, you'll never know when that Get Out of Jail Free card will come in handy. I think it's a pretty fair deal.

    I eagerly await your response.


    Believe it or not, Steven sent me back an e-mail:

    FROM:STEVEN DUNNING
    Bank of East Asia (China)
    86? Fuhua 1st Road, Futian, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China

    Dear Friend,

    It is understandable that you might be apprehensive because you do not know me but I have a lucrative business proposal of mutual interest to share with you.

    I am Steven Dunning,Assistant production Manager of the Bank of East Asia (China), 86? Fuhua 1st Road, Futian, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China. Recently,I discovered that an Account Owned by General Ahmed Kamal, who was an Iraqi forces and also a businessman(Jeweler) made a numbered fixed deposit for 12 calendar months, with a value of Seventeen Million Three Hundred Thousand United State Dollars only into an account with my branch, Upon maturity several notice was sent to him, but there was no response.

    We later find out that General Ahmed Kamal and his Governor who is served as the chief police officer had been killed when a roadside bomb hit their convoy of vehicles at Diwaniya where his personal oil well was. After further inquiries, it was discovered that General Ahmed Kamal did not declare any next of kin in his official papers, including the paper work of his bank deposit. The last time he came to my office, he confided in me that no one knew of this deposit in my bank.

    What bothers me most is that according to the laws of my country, at the expiration of six{6} years,the funds will be revert to the ownership of the Singapore Government, if nobody applies to claim it. Against this backdrop, my suggestion to you is that I will like to accost you as a foreigner to stand as the next of kin to General Ahmed Kamal, so that you will be able to receive his funds. MODALITIES: I want you to know that all modalities for the successful of this transfer to you have been mapped out and success is 100% sure. I have an attorney that will prepare the necessary documents that will back you up as the next of kin to General Ahmed Kamal, all that is required from you is to provide me with your Full Names and Address, so that the attorney can commence his job.

    Kind Regards
    Steven Dunning.


    Poor Ahmed Kamal. He never saw that roadside bomb coming.

    One question - what's with the "86?" Does he not know he's located on 86 Fuhua 1st Road? Is he just guessing?

    Nevertheless, I had to reply with a counteroffer. I don't want General Kamal's fortunes. I just want Park Place.

    Steven,

    You want to play hardball, eh? I respect your bargaining.

    In addition to Marvin Gardens, Ventor Avenue, St. Charles Place, B&O Railroad and a Get Out of Jail Free card, I will throw in Baltic Avenue and $200. You cannot beat that. That's a cool, free 200 bucks, and you don't even have to pass Go. Plus, you get a monopoly on those pesky purple spots.

    I am not sure why you propose a 50-50 split. We are giving each other monopolies, are we not? I am willing to negotiate immunities, so that would benefit both of us and screw over the other players, including the wheel barrow. I hate that son of a b***h.

    Please mail me your Boardwalk card, and while you're at it, I'd like to build two houses on Boardwalk and one house on Park Place. Send me your address, and I'll ship my cards to you.

    My shipping info is:

    Walter Cherepinsky
    9764 Jeopardy Lane
    Chicago, IL 60601
    312-867-5309


    BALTIMORE OFFENSE: What a pathetic display. How did the Ravens not secure a single first down in two-and-a-half quarters? Why didn't Ray Rice carry the ball? Why did Rice fumble on the rare occasions that he touched the rock? Why did Joe Flacco play like he smoked crack before kickoff?

    As ugly as the Ravens looked Monday night, I expect them to bounce back. The Jaguars have an excellent defense, while the Cardinals stink. They can't stop the pass and struggle to get to the quarterback. I'll be mildly surprised if Flacco doesn't rebound with at least a solid performance.

    And then there's the matter of Rice. The fumbles were flukes, since the Pro Bowl runner seldom coughed up the ball in his career prior to the Monday night tilt. Several Baltimore defenders complained that Rice didn't get enough touches, which I couldn't agree more with. Seriously, what was up with Rice's temporary benching in the second quarter? And why waste one drive by giving Ricky Williams carries on first and second down? Cam Cameron is an idiot.

    ARIZONA OFFENSE: If the Cardinals could go back in time and expunge the Kevin Kolb trade, they wouldn't think twice. Kolb has been terrible thus far. Sure, the offensive line can't block whatsoever, but he's shown no evidence that he's worth a fraction of the $65 million he received in August.

    Kolb has completed only 53.6 percent of his passes in his past three outings, and I expect that number to be slightly worse after this game. The Ravens are an angry team, and they're going to wreak havoc upon the former Eagle.

    Making matters worse for the Cardinals, Chris Wells is expected to be out with a minor injury. Someone named Alfonso Smith, averaging 3.6 YPC, will start instead.

    RECAP: The Ravens are my October NFL Pick of the Month. I'll admit that I don't love this as much as the Chiefs over the Chargers (won) or Bengals over the 49ers (lost; didn't realize San Francisco was that good), but it's still my favorite selection of this miserable October.

    Here's why I'm going with Baltimore:

    1. As I discussed in the opening paragraphs of this picks page, the bad teams are especially bad this year. The Cardinals belong in that pantheon. They're absolutely terrible. Kolb stinks, the offensive line can't block, and the defense can't stop anyone.

    2. Making matters worse for the Cardinals, they're a West Coast team traveling across the country to play an early game.

    3. As for the Ravens, they looked dreadful on Monday night, but I expect them to rebound. John Harbaugh is 4-1 against the spread coming off a loss as a favorite.

    4. People are scared to bet on Baltimore after that poor offensive showing at Jacksonville. If the Ravens would have destroyed the Jaguars, as everyone expected them to, this line might be -14.5 or -15, and the public would be pounding the host. The loss has given us some spread value, and will perhaps keep Vegas from making sure the Cardinals cover.

    5. Oh, and as for that offensive showing, there have been three occasions in which the Ravens have scored fewer than 10 points in this Harbaugh-Flacco era. They've rebounded by scoring 27, 33 and 16 (16-0 victory) the following week. Not included in this was Baltimore's demolition of the Rams in Week 3 this year following a 26-13 upset at Tennessee.

    Flacco doesn't get too up or down, so he won't be fazed by what happened at Jacksonville. Meanwhile, Ray Lewis and the proud veterans on defense will be out for blood. Or maybe they'll outplay the Cardinals, and I'll get screwed over by a cheap special teams touchdown or a backdoor cover. That sounds about right.

    UNIT CHANGE: This will not be my Pick of the Month. I received some information that now has me less convinced that the Ravens will cover. I still like them, but not six units worth.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No psychological edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: Cardinals.
    A good amount of action is on Baltimore, but not too much to indicate that something shady might go down.
  • Percentage of money on Baltimore: 75% (66,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Ravens.
  • Ravens are 13-7 ATS vs. teams with losing records under John Harbaugh.
  • Ravens are 5-2 ATS as double-digit home favorites under John Harbaugh.
  • John Harbaugh is 4-1 ATS after losing as a favorite.
  • Opening Line: Ravens -13.
  • Opening Total: 44.5.
  • Weather: Normal weather.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Ravens 34, Cardinals 13
    Ravens -12 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330
    Over 43 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Ravens 30, Cardinals 27






    Miami Dolphins (0-6) at New York Giants (4-2)
    Line: Giants by 9.5. Total: 42.5.

    Walt's Projected Line (Before Week 7): Giants -14.
    Walt's Projected Line (After Week 7): Giants -14.
    Sunday, Oct. 30, 1:00 ET
    Discuss Game, Talk Trash

    The Game. Edge: Giants.

    Video of the Week: If you support my use of the QB Dog Killer nickname - and based on the e-mails I received when I started calling him "QB Eagles No. 7," I know many of you do - you may enjoy this video that forum member Speedel provided. It's Lady and the Tramp and Michael Vick.

    If you've seen this video before, you may still enjoy the comments by moron YouTube poster creamofcrop55:

    ok s*** brains, answer me this question if you think you know so smart about football, why do you think he got hurt???

    to bad its not a broken arm and hes playing and on a scale of 1 to pretzel how salty to you feel!?!?!?!?

    On a scale of "1 to pretzel," CreamofCrap55's IQ is yellow mustard.

    MIAMI OFFENSE: The Giants rank 22nd against the run, allowing 4.7 YPC this year, so this seems like a good matchup for Daniel Thomas and Reggie Bush.

    Except it's not. New York has actually excelled versus ground attacks when Pro Bowl left end Justin Tuck has been on the field. The problem is that Tuck has missed several games. Unfortunately for the Dolphins, he'll be making his return to the lineup Sunday.

    Miami won't be able to run the football, meaning Matt Moore will have to move the chains on his own. Considering his own ineptness, New York's fierce pass rush and his crappy/overrated receivers dropping numerous passes, the Dolphins don't seem to stand a chance.

    NEW YORK OFFENSE: Two other key players returning to the Giants are guard Chris Snee and running back Brandon Jacobs. New York should be able to run the ball extremely well against a Miami defense that has surrendered at least 98 rushing yards to each of their previous three opponents (even excluding Tim Tebow's numbers).

    The Giants will need Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw to get going because the Dolphins have improved against the pass since Vontae Davis came back from injury. They've played Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez the past two weeks, but Davis' return has definitely made a big impact.

    RECAP: I wrote this in my NFL Power Rankings, but I want to clear something I received a ton of e-mails about. Throughout my Week 7 NFL Picks pages, I stated that teams coming off byes were screwed this year because they wouldn't be able to practice and improve on things per the new post-lockout rules.

    I didn't mean all teams. I meant just the crappy ones. If you've noticed, crappy and sub-par teams coming off their bye have looked dreadful this year. Good teams won't have this problem because they're, well, good.

    With that in mind, I really like the Giants. Non-divisional favorites after a bye are 40-22 against the spread at home since 2002. Oh, and then there's the matter of the Dolphins being absolutely horrific. That pretty much nullifies my concern that New York will have one of its trademark stinkers against an inferior opponent.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No psychological edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: Dolphins.
    Why would anyone bet on Miami?
  • Percentage of money on New York: 83% (103,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Giants.
  • Tony Sparano is 18-9 ATS on the road.
  • Dolphins are 3-9 ATS vs. NFC teams under Tony Sparano.
  • Dolphins are 2-12 ATS after a loss of 6 or fewer points since 2007.
  • Giants are 17-24 ATS as favorites of 6.5 or more the previous 41 instances.
  • Opening Line: Giants -10.
  • Opening Total: 42.
  • Weather: Partly cloudy, 47 degrees. Mild wind, 12 mph.


    Week 8 NFL Pick: Giants 27, Dolphins 10
    Giants -9.5 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330
    Under 42.5 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Giants 20, Dolphins 17




    Week 8 NFL Picks - Late Games
    Redskins vs. Bills, Lions at Broncos, Patriots at Steelers, Browns at 49ers, Bengals at Seahawks, Cowboys at Eagles, Chargers at Chiefs



    Prop/Teaser/Parlay Picks
    A list of some of my favorite team/player prop picks this week
    (Offense & defensive ROY picks to be counted whenver winners are announced.) Picks carried over on a week-to-week basis will be in black.


  • Prop/teaser/parlay picks posted in Week 8 NFL Picks - Late Games



    NFL Picks - Nov. 1


    2015 NFL Mock Draft - Oct. 29


    Fantasy Football Rankings - Sept. 5


    2016 NFL Mock Draft - July 24


    2015 NBA Mock Draft - July 1


    NFL Free Agents




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    Last Week's NFL Picks Against The Spread (Week 8, 2014): 4-11 (+$320)
    Last Week's 2-3 Unit NFL Picks (Week 8, 2014): 2-2 (+$80)
    Last Week's 4-5 Unit NFL Picks (Week 8, 2014): 0-1 (-$440)
    Last Week Over-Under (Week 8, 2014): 9-6 ($0)
    Last Week's Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks (Week 8, 2014): $0

    2014 NFL Picks of the Month: 1-1, 50.0% (+$370)

    2014 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 63-68-6, 48.1% (-$615)
    2014 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 25-20, 55.6% (+$850)
    2014 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 3-7-1, 30.0% (-$1,770)
    2014 Season Over-Under: 68-51-1, 57.1% ($0)
    2014 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$690

    1999 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 27-41-3 (39.7%)
    2000 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 128-123-8 (51.0%)
    2001 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 127-122-7 (51.0%)
    2002 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 123-136-7 (47.5%)
    2003 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 146-126-8 (53.7%)
    2004 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 157-123-8 (56.1%)
    2005 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 156-126-11 (55.3%)
    2006 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 151-135-9 (52.8%)
    2007 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 162-135-10, 54.5% (+$2,550)
    2008 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 148-140-7, 51.4% (+$2,620)
    2009 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 151-124-9, 54.9% (+$3,370)
    2010 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 144-131-8, 52.4% (+$6,080)
    2011 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 137-133-12, 50.7% (-$1,925)
    2012 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 130-145-8, 47.3% (-$5,760)
    2013 Season NFL Picks Against The Spread: 144-131-8, 52.4% (+$5,580)

    2002 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 41-49-2 (45.6%)
    2003 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 52-51-2 (50.5%)
    2004 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 65-44-3 (59.6%)
    2005 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 77-61-1 (55.8%)
    2006 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 65-61-4 (51.6%)
    2007 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 83-59-5, 58.5% (+$4,110)
    2008 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 44-57-3, 43.6% (-$3,510)
    2009 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 49-35-3, 58.3% (+$2,260)
    2010 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 51-38-4, 57.3% (+$3,180)
    2011 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 44-51-3, 46.3% (-$2,715)
    2012 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 45-50-2, 47.4% (-$2,130)
    2013 Season 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 38-42, 47.5% (-$2,890)

    2002 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 11-12 (47.8%)
    2003 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 16-13-1 (55.2%)
    2004 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 18-11 (62.1%)
    2005 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 25-22-1 (53.2%)
    2006 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 21-29-1 (42.0%)
    2007 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 35-30-2, 53.8% (+$420)
    2008 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 39-26-2, 60.0% (+$4,055)
    2009 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 29-26, 52.7% (+$330)
    2010 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 32-22, 59.3% (+$4,790)
    2011 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 14-14, 50.0% (-$1,260)
    2012 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 14-21, 40.0% (-$3,650)
    2013 Season 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 17-9-3, 65.4% (+$2,970)

    2001 Season Over-Under: 3-2 (60.0%)
    2002 Season Over-Under: 121-91-3 (57.1%)
    2003 Season Over-Under: 126-132-2 (48.8%)
    2004 Season Over-Under: 139-124-4 (52.9%)
    2005 Season Over-Under: 117-145-4 (44.7%)
    2006 Season Over-Under: 129-132-5 (49.4%)
    2007 Season Over-Under: 136-145-3, 48.4% (-$1,900)
    2008 Season Over-Under: 137-125-6, 52.3% (+$860)
    2009 Season Over-Under: 128-135-4, 48.7% (-$3,195)
    2010 Season Over-Under: 128-135-5, 48.7% (-$5)
    2011 Season Over-Under: 131-131-5, 50.0% (+$135)
    2012 Season Over-Under: 125-121-5, 50.8% (+$30)
    2013 Season Over-Under: 132-130-5, 50.4% (-$340)

    2007 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$1,035
    2008 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$1,775
    2009 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$865
    2010 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$200
    2011 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$590
    2012 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: -$1,685
    2013 Season Prop/ML/Teaser/Parlay Picks: +$2,245

    2006 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-3 (50%)
    2007 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-3, 50.0% (-$400)
    2008 NFL Picks of the Month: 6-1, 85.7% (+$3,720)
    2009 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-2, 60.0% (+$640)
    2010 NFL Picks of the Month: 2-4, 33.3% (-$1,810)
    2011 NFL Picks of the Month: 5-2, 71.4% (+$1,870)
    2012 NFL Picks of the Month: 3-2, 60.0% (+$560)
    2013 NFL Picks of the Month: 6-0, 100% (+$3,900)

    Career NFL Picks Against The Spread: 2,077-1,912-116, 52.1% (+$11,800)
    Career 2-3 Unit NFL Picks: 669-603-31 (52.6%)
    Career 4-5 Unit NFL Picks: 279-241-11 (53.7%)
    Career Over-Under: 1,609-1,588-47 (50.3%)
    Career Second-Half NFL Picks: 22-14-1 (61.1%)
    Career NFL Picks of the Month: 30-16 (65.2%)



    My Team-by-Team ATS Record
    This section shows how well I do when picking each team this year. The purpose is to see how well I read each team. Pushes are not displayed. Winning/losing streak in parentheses.

    Cowboys: 3-5
    Bears: 3-5
    Bucs: 5-2
    49ers: 3-3
    Eagles: 4-3
    Lions: 2-5
    Falcons: 3-5
    Cardinals: 3-4
    Giants: 2-5
    Packers: 5-2
    Panthers: 2-6
    Rams: 3-4
    Redskins: 5-3
    Vikings: 6-2
    Saints: 3-3
    Seahawks: 3-4
    Bills: 3-5
    Bengals: 2-6
    Colts: 4-4
    Broncos: 4-3
    Dolphins: 5-1
    Browns: 3-2
    Jaguars: 3-5
    Chargers: 2-6
    Jets: 4-4
    Ravens: 2-5
    Texans: 5-3
    Chiefs: 4-2
    Patriots: 4-4
    Steelers: 3-5
    Titans: 4-3
    Raiders: 3-4
    Divisional: 13-18 (2011-13: 141-137)
    2x Game Edge: 7-9 (2011-13: 55-62)
    2x Psych Edge: 7-12 (2011-13: 92-80)
    2x Vegas Edge: 18-16 (2011-13: 129-142)
    2x Trend Edge: 13-8 (2011-13: 72-78)
    Double Edge: 4-5 (2011-13: 27-33)
    Triple Edge: 0-0 (2011-13: 2-1)
    Quad Edge: 0-0 (2011-13: 0-0)

    2003 Preseason: 3 | 4 | 5
    2003 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 20 | XXXVIII
    2004 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2004 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XXXIX
    2005 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2005 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XL
    2006 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2006 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLI
    2007 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2007 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLII |
    2008 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
    2008 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLIII |
    2009 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLIV |
    2010 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
    2010 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLV |
    2011 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
    2011 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLVI |
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