Saturday, January 22, 2005
Indoors, outdoors.. what's the difference?
I obviously need to pay more attention to the Eagles games. I should have realized they aren't playing under a dome, as the snowy pics of Lincoln Financial Field will attest. No wonder Minnesota couldn't beat them last week.
Glenn 8-D 11:04:00 PM
Who will choke this week?
I'm running out of opportunities for the Pennsy duo to implode as the playoffs wear on. My prediction of the Minnesota upset fizzled last week as the Eagles showed their mettle to advance to the NFC Championship game Sunday. Pittsburgh escaped the Jets, who shanked a game-winning field goal in OT. Something tells me they won't get through this week as easily.
Last week I was a mediocre 2-2 again. I have a perfect .500 average for the playoffs, which makes me all the more thankful that I didn't have to make these predictions with the Junior Bro! Let's see if I can get it correct this week with only two games on the docket...
Atlanta @ Philadelphia -- Atlanta is a tough team to read, although their defense has been much tougher against opponents. Trouble is, their offense is heavily dependent on the performance of Michael Vick, and if you can contain him the Falcons will find it tough to score. Philadelphia is capable of containing Vick and racking up points on the determined arm of Donovan McNabb. The major unknown is the weather, which could render the field a frozen tundra of the East. The Eagles have waited a long time to get to the Stupor Bore and they aren't going to let the fans down... yet. Eagles, 23-17.
New England @ Pittsburgh -- I can hardly wait. Time for the Roethlisberger Express to slam into two-time champion Tom Brady and his Patriots D. This, of course, is a rematch of the regular season game between these two in which the Steelers ended the Pats' 21-game win streak. The Steelers made the Pats look mortal that day. But that was then and this is for a trip to the Stupor Bore. Experience counts for a lot, and Bill Belichick has a team that knows how to win a close contest. Revenge will be sweet, and hopefully there will be lots of shots of Bill Cowher scowling on the Pittsburgh sidelines. Patriots, 34-24.
Glenn 8-D 10:36:00 PM
Saturday, January 15, 2005
Playoffs Part Deux
I was a disappointing 2-of-4 in the wild card games last week, although I was not thoroughly disappointed with the results. Seeing Minnesota get its revenge on the rival Packers was sweet if you're a Vikings fan. I don't particularly care if the Vikes go all the way, but something tells me they will give Philadelphia a run for its Lombardi Trophy. Can I predict better this weekend? Let's see...
N.Y. Jets @ Pittsburgh -- Now we get to see how determined the Steelers are to overcome their underachiever reputation. The Jets struggled on offense against the Chargers on the road last week before being gifted an OT victory. Pittsburgh's defense is pretty good, and at home I think they'll prevail (unfortunately). Steelers, 21-17.
St. Louis @ Atlanta -- Michael Vick is a game-maker. That much we know. What we don't know is how he'll perform in the postseason, especially after sitting out the last couple of regular season games and with the team coming off a first-round bye. The Rams have kept the engine warm, winning a tough game in Seattle last week and knocking off the playoff-seeded Eagles and Jets in the final two weekends of the regular season. They have to have a lot of confidence right now. I'm looking for the upset. Rams, 34-27.
Minnesota @ Philadelphia -- It's tough to read this game because all signs say Philly is the dominant team in the NFC, having lost just a pair of regular-season games. No one expected the Vikes to get by the Packers last weekend. We could say this is a case of role reversals, with the Vikings once the elite team in the NFC. Who can forget the year the 15-1 Vikes got bounced in the second round after a first-round bye? That Minnesota team was cocky and overconfident -- just as the Eagles appear to be now. Perhaps the Vikes, staggering into the playoffs, aren't taking anything for granted this time. They'll be indoors, which usually bodes well for the Vikings, and they have the potential to deliver an upset on the road. The Eagles, if they don't lose here, should be very wary of this team. I'm going out on a limb to call the upset. Lack of Terrell Owens will be a factor. Vikings, 37-24.
Indianapolis @ New England -- A Sunday night game. I'm glad I don't have to pick this for points! This will be a rematch of the season's very first game, which was played on a Thursday night in New England, and which the Patsies won. Peyton Manning got hot after that, setting the league single-season TD record. He looked great at home last weekend in the blowout of Denver. But the Patriots actually have a defense, and they also have an experienced Stupor Bore MVP QB in Tom Brady. If it's cold and snowy... This could be one for the ages, perhaps the most serious test for the next champ, whichever team it may be. I'm going with experience and the home field advantage. Patriots, 41-38.
Glenn 8-D 12:37:00 PM
Monday, January 10, 2005
My Belated Concession
No I don't demand a recount. I was thoroughly slaughtered in week 17. Like the 49ers, the Raiders, and the Democrats, Junior Bro has also fallen on hard times. Congratulations to Senior Bro for a season well picked, and a finish which equaled his highest lead of the season.
The 49ers have fired their GM and coach, both deservedly so, but unfortunately they're still stuck with the same owner. I agree with Kevan Barlow who said earlier this year that the 49ers should draft five new offensive linemen. They need help more at that position than they do at quarterback. Even Montana couldn't have succeeded if he had no time to throw.
The biggest surprise of the playoffs so far has to be Green Bay getting thumped by Minnesota. That makes a total of two playoff losses at home in franchise history.
How about New England vs. Atlanta in the Superbowl? I don't believe in Pittsburgh due to their playoff inexperience. Indianapolis has a shot, but would have to win two in a row on the road. The NFC is a crapshoot, but Philly seems good at choking when it counts. I expect both the Vikings and Rams to bow out in the next round.
Junior Bro 2:56:00 PM
Saturday, January 08, 2005
It feels so strange not having football picks today. It was just a week ago that the Gehlke Bros. were in a nip-and-tuck battle for the Surfy; now it feels like a year ago.
So... who cares about the playoffs? OK, I'll confess that I'm interested -- interested in how long it will take for the two Pennsylvania teams to fold. But let's start with this weekend's games:
SATURDAY: St. Louis @ Seattle -- As much as I'd like to see the Seahawks advance because I like Jerry Rice, they're chronic underachievers. They've already lost twice to the Rams. Let's make it thrice after today. Rams, 27-24.
N.Y. Jets @ San Diego -- The Jets beat the Chargers early in the season, but this isn't the same team that lost that game. That was before they hit their stride, and SD's win over the Chiefs last weekend proves they aren't content with backsliding into the postseason. Chargers could be the Cinderella team of Stupor Bore XXXIX. Chargers, 37-31.
SUNDAY: Denver @ Indianapolis. The Broncos won a game they had to have last week just to make the postseason. Unfortunately for them, that win came at home against this same Colts team that has been on fire under the strength of Peyton Manning's arm. This should be payback time in a big way. Colts, 49-21.
Minnesota @ Green Bay -- Another game between underachievers. Fortunately for the Packers, they're at home. They've already dumped the Vikes twice this season by identical 34-31 scores. Brett Favre and his aging arm get the job done in the final drive of the game. Packers, 31-28.
Glenn 8-D 1:00:00 PM
Thursday, January 06, 2005
Hail the new Niners
So, Terry Donahue and Dennis Erickson are out in the City by the Bay. Team owner John York says this is the first step to returning the 49ers to respectability. It's a step, all right, but a good one? I'd have greater confidence in York's pronouncement if not for the fact that he plans to hire the next head coach himself. He wants to hire a new GM AFTER filling the coaching vacancy, which is a little bass ackwards. I have this vision of York becoming the next Al Davis, muttering platitudes about excellence while his team stumbles to mediocrity on the field year after year. This ain't good, Niner fans.
Glenn 8-D 2:48:00 PM
Sunday, January 02, 2005
Last year I did backflips when I won the Surfy. This year I was too worried to even watch the games on TV. I hadn't posted until now for fear of jinxing myself, but this week looked like the one that was going to be the death of my season. Too many meaningless games on the schedule -- well, meaningless for all but the Gehlke Bros. They were all very tough to predict. We had three splits today, and fortunately for me both my teams won the early games, saving me from a Sunday-night finale that could have made a difference between winning outright and going to the post season of football picks.
Thanks, Sean and Ben, for another great year of football picks. Without the other Bros there would be no Gehlke Bros. Football (and my stress level would be lower between September and January! Just kidding.) I'm sure there will be more to chime-in on once I've had a chance to still my shaking knees, queasy gut and trembling typing fingers.
Glenn 8-D 1:23:00 PM