Spent a great day at Rutgers yesterday for homecoming. I ate my body weight in chicken fingers and caught up with friends new and old, all while Rutgers won its second game in a row against a Big Ten opponnent for the first time since joining the conference. Offensive ineptitude aside, it was an enjoyable game and I may or may not have eaten someone else’s order of french fries while I was standing at the bar waiting for a drink. If you were at Brother Jimmy’s yesterday and were wondering where your french fries went, please accept my deepest sincerest apology. The liquor was calling the shots yesterday – I appropriately dedicated every drinkypoo to the memory of the late John Dunsworth – who we all knew and loved as Mr. Lahey from Trailer Park Boys. #RIPMrLahey
Last week was a tough go for teams I picked – pretty much every quarterback got hurt, which isn’t something you can predict when you’re pouring over point spreads and reading into advanced metrics to try and get the gravy train rolling. Anyway, join me on a trip to money town this NFL Sunday why don’t ya?
Tampa Bay at Buffalo (Bills -3)
If I’ve learned anything the past few weeks, is that I need to put more respek on Buffalo’s name. They’re a tough team. Luckily for Tampa Bay, Famous Jameis and Kwon Alexander are both good to go for this game – they’ll need them. However, I’m riding with Buffalo this time around.
Droop’s pick: Bills
Carolina at Chicago(Panthers +3)
The Bears are coming off a huge win against the Ravens last week. They’ve got a sound defense but an offense that struggles at times. Mitch Trubitsky will face another tough defense in Carolina, who will be without star linebacker Luke Keuchly however. Kelvin Benjamin will play for the Panthers, which will give their offense a boost. I like Carolina in this matchup.
Droop’s pick: Panthers
Tennessee at Cleveland (Titans +5.5)
The Browns stink. There is a less than zero percent chance the Titans lose this game. Titans 5 point favorites? Pfft. Lock it up.
Droop’s pick: Titans
New Orleans at Green Bay (Saints +4.5)
Water is wet, the sky is blue, the Packers are decimated by injuries again.
I like Drew Brees against a battered defense.
Droop’s pick: Saints
Jacksonville at Indianapolis (Jags +3)
How often is it that we can say a team won a trade with the Patriots? In spite of their record, the Colts have to be happy with Jacoby Brissett’s production. As for the game, I hope you have Chris Ivory ready to go in Fantasy, since Leonard Fournette is not expected to play today and hasn’t practiced all week with a foot injury. Jacksonville can get to the quarterback – got a feeling good Blake Bortles shows up today. I can’t quit the Jags.
Droop’s pick: Jags
Arizona at Los Angeles (Cardinals +3)
No better candidate for ‘who’s back’ of the week than Adrian Peterson. This is a London game also. Is Adrian Peterson back? I’ll buy it – but I don’t think he’s in for a good day against a Rams defense that’s getting it together. Fun fact via @AdamSchefter – Adrian Peterson has played in more London games this season than games in New Orleans or Arizona. The Cards had two offensive linemen return from injuries last week, which gave their offense a huge boost – they’ll need them to play well today to handle the Rams’ pass rushers. I’m taking Arizona in London.
Droop’s pick: Cardinals
NY Jets at Miami (Dolphins -3)
The Jets are one of the most surprising teams this season, and they gave Tom Brady and co. all they could handle last week. Who knows how the game could’ve turned out had that questionable call that took Austin Sefarian-Jenkins’s touchdown away had gone the other way. I expect the Jets to come out and take it to Miami today.
Droop’s pick: Jets
Baltimore at Minnesota (Vikings -6)
Baltimore is coming off an ugly loss against Chicago, and the Vikings are playing better football. Case Keenum, a career backup, is playing better football than Joe Flacco right now.
Joe Flacco: $24,550,000.00 to play this season
Case Keenum: $2,000,000.00
Droop’s pick: Vikings
Dallas at San Francisco(Dallas +6)
How many more games this season will San Francisco lose by 3 points or less? SF’s record against the spread this season is good (4-2) despite their winless record. Dallas will get back Anthony Hitchens from injury to play alongside Sean Lee, who will try to shore up a run defense that has struggled.
Droop’s pick: Dallas
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh(Steelers -5)
Pittsburgh welcomes the Bengals to town after coming off an emotional win against the then-unbeaten Chiefs in Arrowhead. Both teams are getting it together offensively, and Pittsburgh’s defense is coming around. I have to give the nod to Big Ben at home. This one is bound to be chippy and violent.
Droop’s pick: Steelers
Denver at LA Chargers (Even)
This one is a toss up. The Chargers have literally no home field advantage to speak of – every home game sounds like they’re on the road with how many fans of other teams get into their stadium. Trevor Siemian stunk it up against the Giants last week, I can see the Chargers defense giving him some fits.
Droop’s pick: Bolo tie Phillip Rivers and the Chargers
Seattle at New York Giants (Seahawks +4)
The Giants lost all of their receivers, Ben MacAdoo gave up playcalling, and they won IN DENVER anyway. Can’t be a coincidence. Pete Carroll’s team will be better prepared on defense that will give Eli Manning some headaches. Seattle’s defense will lead the way to a win this afternoon.
Droop’s pick: Seahawks
Atlanta at New England (Pats -3)
Falcons owner Arthur Blank says he doesn’t need closure in his team’s rematch with the Patriots Sunday night at Gillette stadium. (Maury voice) The lie detector determined that was a lie. You don’t blow a 25 point lead in the Super Bowl and not have nightmares about it the rest of your life – it just doesn’t work that way. Stephon Gilmore and Eric Rowe are both out, which inserts Jonathan Bademosi into the mix again as New England’s 3rd DB against an offense that can kill you multiple ways, but has underperformed. Tom Brady will be the difference maker, just like in the Super Bowl.
Droop’s pick: Patriots
Washington at Philadelphia (Eagles -4.5)
Josh Norman being out is a huge hit to Washington’s defense. Fletcher Cox is one of the best defensive linemen in football. The Eagles are the best team in the NFC and the Wentz Wagon will continue to roll against the R words in the City of Brotherly Love on Monday night.
Droop’s pick: Eagles