Welcome to another edition of DICK PICKS: the only online NFL gambling column that handles poisonous snakes for both religious and sexual purposes.
We’re through the Wild Card round and I was right about two underdogs covering and one winning outright. But I picked the wrong ones! Because I’m an idiot, you see. It turns out that Pittsburgh wasn’t as formidable as I had thought, and while I knew Ryan Lindley was bad, and that Arizona’s defense would make some plays, I hadn’t expected them to fuck up as badly as they did. They still allllmost covered, but Jesus fucking Christ, Ted Ginn. How are you even still in the league? I feel like every offseason some coach sees that name on the free agent list and says “Hey, Ted Ginn is a free agent! I’ve heard of that guy! How many teams has he played for? Sixteen? Well, those guys were IDIOTS for letting him go! Let’s give him a million dollars and then hit the Old Country Buffet. My treat!”
Let’s talk about that Dallas game for a second. Holy shit did Detroit get screwed. Yes I know they could have made a few more plays and won the game, but they didn’t have a chance to make a bunch of extra plays because the referees decided that they wanted to punish the most miserable city in the country even more than it already has been because they really wanted to see a corpse hug a fat governor I guess. The NFL has come out and said “Yes there were a lot of penalties on that play. Like, a whole bunch. But you can’t really fault the refs for not calling them because they’re mostly paid to do other stuff. Like wave their arms around like windmills and make sure nobody dances too much.”
In a season where the NFL has been embarrassed to the point that the commissioner has to hide in a bunker with a gun in his mouth like Hitler (yes Roger Goodell is basically Hitler. You heard it here first) this sort of controversy is the last thing the league needed. Sure, a lot of the players are monsters off the field, but LOOK AT THE PRODUCT! Well, once you take away from the product on the field in such an egregious manner, what’s left? Oh, right… GAMBLING! That’s why we’re here anyway! I just can’t quit you NFL, because then I would have to gamble on the NBA and that is a nightmare of Lovecraftian proportions. So we soldier on. We suck it up, we take our lumps, and we still come back for more. Like a victim of domestic violence! Oh god, what is this league doing to us? No. No time to think about that! ON TO THE PICKS! Last week’s picks went 2-2, and as always, the home team is in caps.
Baltimore +7 vs. NEW ENGLAND
The most despicable franchise in the league visits the somehow still most hated franchise in the league. Look, I absolutely understand why people hate the Patriots and their fans, but at least they had the good taste to cut their murderer instead of building a statue of him.
This game is a tough one to call, because sure, Baltimore is a six seed traveling to New England who was the best team in the AFC during the regular season. BUT, as a Patriots fan, I am very nervous. It’s not so much about recent history as the makeup of these particular teams. Baltimore’s weakness is the deep ball, which the Patriots suck at. Their strength is their pass rush, which could be a huge problem because Nate Solder has been ass for a good portion of this season and if he plays like ass on Saturday then Tom Brady is toast. The most important aspect of this game for both teams will be picking up yards on first and second downs. Whichever team can make their third downs the most manageable will win. Probably. Or maybe whichever team prays to their voodoo god and then drinks a glass of pee will win the game. I’m not a football scientist.
This just feels like a close game. And I’m not happy about it. As a Pats fan, I wanted to see Indy or Cincinnati, because those teams suck ALL THE TIME. I don’t like my team playing teams that only suck SOMETIMES, because how the fuck am I supposed to know if they’re going to suck this week? Honestly though, if the Ravens get to the Super Bowl after this season, when they defended Ray Rice, and even wrote a loathsome defense of him on their website before the real punch video came out, then everyone should boycott the damn thing. Not because I’ll be bitter, but for like, morals and ethics and all that.
SEATTLE -10.5 vs. Carolina
This is a HUGE line for a playoff game, but it is absolutely warranted and I can’t even justify taking the points here. Carolina out-gained Arizona by 309 yards last week and only won by 11 points. That’s problematic! Seattle has beaten Carolina in their three most recent match-ups, all of which were low-scoring affairs, but all of which were also in Carolina. In Seattle, I expect the Seahawks to blow the doors off the Panthers, because this Panthers team is bad and just because they’ve won five games in a row doesn’t mean they aren’t still bad. Also, even if the Panther’s weren’t as shitty, Seattle is still very, very good. Their defense is going to eat this offensive line alive and Cam Newton is probably going to get the shit kicked out of him all day, and his back and ankle are already fucked up. That means we’re one play away from Derek Anderson entering a playoff game and everyone in Carolina… not giving a shit because it’s ACC basketball season.
Is there any weirder city to have a dominant sports franchise than Seattle? I mean, these are people that march for like a mile to go to soccer games just because it’s soccer and they want to let the rest of the country know how counter-culture they are. “Oh you all think soccer is bad??? WELL ACTUALLY IT’S GOOD! IN SEATTLE WE’RE ENLIGHTENED ENOUGH TO THINK SOCCER IS GOOD!” This is the “YOU’RE NOT MY REAL DAD STEVE YOU CAN’T TELL ME WHAT TO DO!” capital of the world, and yet… they’ve had to semi-embrace this team because they’re just THAT good. This is their “OKAY FINE YOU WERE RIGHT STEVE BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN IS ACTUALLY PRETTY GOOD! I STILL HATE YOU FOR FUCKING MY MOM THOUGH!” I’d be curious to know how many bearded guys and burlesque dancers in that city have cats named Marshawn right now.
GREEN BAY -6 vs. Dallas
OH FUCK YOU JERRY JONES YOU KNOW YOU DON’T DESERVE TO BE HERE! Dallas went 8-0 on the road this year, but aside from a win at Seattle, none of their other wins were all that impressive. Their shit division accounted for four of those, and the others were Chicago, St. Louis, Tennessee, and Jacksonville. Green Bay is 8-0 at home, with three of those wins coming against playoff teams. Aaron Rodgers hasn’t thrown an interception at home in literally years. Dallas’ only hope is that it can run enough to keep Rodgers off the field, and when he is on the field that the cold bothers his leg enough to make him ineffective. Otherwise they will get smashed and everyone can laugh at Tony Romo and start rumors that he has a small misshapen dick because that’s what happens when you lose in the playoffs. Fans will mercilessly ridicule your dick. I remember when Tom Brady lost last year there was that rumor going around that his dick was shaped like a top hat. Very shameful.
Speaking of dicks, how awful are Cowboys fans? For years now, they’ve been hiding shamefully from their team’s failures and now everything is HOW BOUT DEM COWBOYS!!! These people freaked out about Romo’s extension and Jason Garrett getting chance after chance, but now they’re out in full force pretending it’s 1993 and Quincy Carter never happened. Your team is still run worse than 90% of fantasy teams drafted by divorced dads who still think John Elway is in the league. Jerry Jones gave a kicker a 7 year $22.5 million contract. Since your new giant ridiculous stadium opened there have been more meaningful college basketball games played there than Cowboys games. Your owner had to be physically restrained from drafting Johnny Football. Chill the fuck out until you win something.
Indianapolis +7 vs. DENVER
Our last divisional playoff game, and I just realized that everyone playing this weekend is an actual division winner except for the fuckface Ravens. Baltimore ruins everything! I think both AFC games this weekend will be close, and both NFC games will be blowouts, but keep in mind that I’m a moron and as a child I used to start fires and eat lint from underneath my couch.
The Broncos have looked very beatable over the past month and a half unless you’re Oakland, and they’ve reinvented themselves as a run-first, ball control team because their quarterback’s arm has been made out of spaghetti. Now, I’m not going to jump on the “Peyton Manning is done” bandwagon until I see the body. He’s like Michael Myers, and I would not be surprised to see him throw for six touchdowns or six interceptions. He’s seriously the wild card in this game and I am now actually terrified to bet on PEYTON MANNING. Amazing. Anyway, the Colts had a nice win against Cincy, but we all knew the Bengals were bad and Andy Dalton is bad and it wasn’t shocking to see them being bad in a playoff game. I think Denver pulls this one out, because Indy’s team is just not good at a lot of things. Andrew Luck is great, but outside of him there’s not much this team can really do right. I can see the Broncos winning in the waning minutes and Jim Irsay grabbing his guitar and writing an awful white-man-blues song called something retarded like “Down and Out in Denver” and then getting drunk and posting it on Twitter because he’s an idiot.
ENJOY THE GAMES THIS WEEK GUYS BECAUSE SOMEDAY WE’LL ALL BE DEAD AND THERE’S NO FOOTBALL IN HELL. ONLY SEATTLE SOUNDERS SOCCER!