Last week’s 3-1 record against the spread has my confidence at an all-time low. Why would getting 3 out of 4 picks correct while only missing out on a perfect 4-0 because I succumbed to all the hype created by an office filled with mostly Patriots fans? Well, the way these things go I figure the chances of me going 0-2 and having my prediction record even out at .500 seems fairly likely. Plus, I think these games can easily go either way.
With that said, here are my picks against the current Las Vegas spreads:
Green Bay (-3.5) over CHICAGO
Having met 181 times in the past but only once in the playoffs, this is easily the most storied rivalry in professional football. Bears and Packers fans hate each other so much that I’ve had some friends stop talking to me because I have friends that like the other team.
They’ve also played twice in the regular season with Chicago winning by 3 at home and the Packers winning the final game of the regular season by 7 in Lambeau. Both teams finished the season strong, the Packers have mostly gotten past their early season injury woes, and the free run at sacking Cutler has been slowed by Martz’s willingness to run the ball a lot more.
This should be a good game, but in these kinds of games I can’t bet against the better quarterback and that’s Aaron Rodgers. Jay Cutler can easily prove me and the rest of his doubters wrong, but I’m picking the Pack to cover the spread. (Apologies to my friends that are Bears fans, hope they win for you guys!)
Prediction: Green Bay 17 Chicago 13
PITTSBURGH (-4) over New Jersey
I’m very excited for this game because it should be a hard-hitting affair between a pair of great defenses who like to get into each other faces. I’ve also gained a mad amount of respect for Rex Ryan’s coaching ability thanks to his amazing schemes in stopping Peyton Manning and making Tom Brady bust out his own version of the “Manning Face”. Plus, you gotta love a coach that will actually say what he really feels even if he’s a total douche bag (not to mention the fact that it takes the pressure off his team and young QB and puts it on him).
Despite all that, I’m thinking the Steelers are going to pull this out at home thanks in part to the fact that the weather will be atrocious during the game. The forecast is for the temperature to be 13 degrees at kickoff with a wind chill as low as 6 and I think this will negatively affect “Dirty” and make him wish he was back at USC. In this respect, I’m thinking the football God’s smiled on the Jets last week as it was in the upper 30s for the Pats game despite it being in the low 20s on the Saturday before and the Monday after the game. This time, they’re not smiling and Big Ben will have to hold off on partying with college girls for another few weeks as Pittsburgh will be prepping for the Super Bowl in Dallas.
Prediction: Pittsburgh 17 New Jersey 6