Don’t @ Me Week 15 NFL Picks
Enjoying the NFL season? Is Fantasy Football just not enough excitement anymore? Well you have come to the right place. Here at “Don’t @ Me” we see ourselves as financial advisers, looking to help you to diversify your portfolio, and allocate your capital wisely in order to maximize profits for shareholders. In other words, I’m going to attempt to pick some winning wagers, in this, my week 15 NFL picks.
All odds/spreads are accurate as of 15th December 2017. And as always, if you were foolish enough to part with cash listening to this advice, don’t @ me.
December is the time of year that teams really want to be hitting their stride. Momentum can go a long way in the playoffs, with the team who gets hot at the right moment riding that momentum all the way to the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, the opposite can be said for this column. I’m currently on a 2-7 skid in the last 3 weeks, limping my way in to the playoffs. Just to illustrate how bad I’m running right now, Cleveland managed to not only lose, but fail to cover a game they were winning 21-7 in the fourth quarter. The Seattle/Jacksonville game that I predicted to be a “low scoring” affair ended up with 54 total points. And my Shoe in of the Week Rams got defeated at home. My god. And as I write this column, I’m watching my Broncos team currently under Brock Osweilers command. Things can only get better, right?
Season Record: 24-17-1 (.571)
Shoe in of the Week: 10-4 (.666)
San Francisco 49ers -1 over Tennessee Titans (20/23):
As someone who has had Jimmy Garoppolo start the past two weeks in fantasy, I’ve had an eye on this 49ers team. The Tom Brady understudy has looked impressive in his first two starts as a 49er working in Kyle Shanahans offense, amassing 645 yards, 2 TD’s and a 92.6 passer rating. Not to mention bringing San Francisco to back to back wins for the first time since 2014 when they had a certain number 7 in at QB who’s name escapes me… But at any rate, San Francisco seems to have their quarterback going forward. The Titans offense meanwhile has been less than impressive, as someone who BENCHED Marcus Mariota for the aforementioned Jimmy G in fantasy, I can attest to that. Mariota has thrown 8 interceptions in the last 4 games, which isn’t a good sign for a Tennessee team that hopes to make the playoffs for the first time since 2008. I never feel confident in the Titans ability to get an important victory, especially with the current coaching staff in place, and this is no exception. On the road against a team with momentum? Take the 49ers -1.
Dallas Cowboys -3 over Oakland Raiders (10/11):
Time for Sunday Night Football! And it’s the mouth-watering matchup we’ve all been waiting for, the Dallas Cowboys versus the Oakland Raiders..? Ok so Sunday Night Football has had a not so stellar season in 2017, but there’s still some reason to tune in late Sunday night. For one, this Dallas team are still playoff hopefuls. The Cowboys offense has had somewhat of a resurgence these last few weeks, with quarterback Dak Prescott coming off arguably his best performance of his sophomore season, completing 66.6% of his passes for 332 yards, 3 TDs and no interceptions in a 30-10 victory over NFC East rival New York Giants. A very good sign indeed if you’re a Cowboys fan, especially when you consider that this is the last game of star running back Ezekiel Elliot’s 6 game suspension for a violation of the NFL’s personal conduct policy. So the Cowboys aren’t short of incentives to win this Sunday. The Raiders on the other hand have had a disastrous season for a team that was predicted to win 10+ games this year. Their 26-15 home loss last week to AFC West rival Kansas City was not as close as the score line indicated, with the Chiefs jumping out a 26-0 lead through three quarters. As much as many people would hate to admit it, the playoffs are a lot more fun with the Cowboys involved, so lets hope Dallas take care of business in primetime and get a victory against this Raiders team.
And now its time for the Shoe in of the Week…
New England Patriots -3 over Pittsburgh Steelers (1/1):
What? You didn’t actually buy that Patriots performance on Monday night against the Dolphins did you? Belichick would have you believe that he wasn’t looking past the Dolphins to this weeks match up and potential AFC championship preview game, but I just don’t believe that for a second (absolutely love this Belichick performance by the way, should be put on display in a museum). With home field advantage likely on the line for these two teams, there’s no way Belichick wanted to show his hand a week early for the Steelers to study. With the return of Gronk from a one game suspension, and a far more consistent output on the field New England should be clear favourites over this Pittsburgh team. The storyline after Monday nights game was “the Pats went 0-11 on third down”, and they still put up 20 points! The Pats are 8-5 against the spread against Pittsburgh and have dominated the Steelers in recent years, with Tom Brady going 7-2 all time against the Steelers, while accumulating 24 touchdowns and only 3 interceptions in that time. With matchups against the Bills and Jets to close out the season, look for New England to assert a firm grip on home field advantage throughout January and clear sailing all the way to the super bowl… again… woohoo.
This OTI piece was written by Sean Keown. Sean is a Denver Broncos fan from Co Down, and is currently studying at Queens’ University Belfast. Sean can be found on twitter at @sean__keown