I will be the first to admit that anticipation for Thanksgiving break has always made this week a bit of a teaser for me. Every year around this time, I try to sit down and watch football, knowing full well that in a few days time I will be eating turkey, surrounded by family and friends and watching a full day’s load of football.
In each of the past few years, the Jets have been in contention, so I thoroughly enjoyed every game in which we could possibly pull out a victory. This year? I think I have subconsciously started paying more attention to college football and Adam Schefter. But that is not an issue, considering how well the Knicks are playing!
Quite frankly, it seems that the sports gods are absolutely, unequivocally, 100 percent unwilling to have me enjoy success in every sport. But as long as I get my picks right this weekend, the Jets could start Tebow for all I care. (I am totally kidding. Please do not let him see the field on Sunday.)
So without further ado, here are my picks for the week. And let’s go Knicks.
(HOME TEAM IN CAPS)
Green Bay at DETROIT
After an awful start to the season, the Detroit Lions have started to heat up recently, thanks largely to Frat Stafford realizing that he does not have the Madden curse. They are performing decently at 4-5 but are last place in a very competitive NFC North.
The Packers also began the season in poor form but are currently riding a four game winning streak.
I rarely look at the records when these NFC North battles occur because both teams will always enter the game in top form. Recent streaks play the biggest factor. Therefore, I believe that the Packers will come out on top. This game will be a classic shootout, with all the wide receivers, specifically James Jones, cashing in.
Green Bay 42 DETROIT 34
Philadelphia at WASHINGTON
Robert Griffin III has just been named a team captain of the Washington Redskins. He started off the year at a breakneck pace, establishing himself as the best rookie quarterback in the league. The team around him needs a lot of help, which is the primary reason why they are not winning, but the future looks bright.
On the flip side, the Eagles are heading downhill. Michael Vick, their $100 million man, just got hurt and will likely be out this week and that probably will help their offense. But their offensive line is a joke, their defense is a sieve and they will continue to lose until Andy Reid gets fired. They cut the excess fat and start all over again.
My fantasy sleeper is Brent Celek because any young, new quarterback will need their safety-blanket tight end. Expect him to see many balls thrown his way.
Washington 27 Philadelphia 13
San Diego at DENVER
The Broncos are continuing along at a breakneck pace and are making a valid argument for being the best team in the AFC. Peyton has been off the charts, and their defense has finally come around. Von Miller has been sacking quarterbacks at a breakneck pace, and their secondary has been locking down the opposition.
They might have peaked too early, but if they can keep this up, I cannot see anyone that will beat them. After starting off the season much better than usual, the Chargers have cooled off. They still are in second place, and a victory against the Broncos would even out the season series, a very important fact for a potential tiebreaker.
However, I do not believe that the Chargers will win. The Broncos are simply way too good right now, and I do not foresee the weak Charger offensive attack penetrating their defense. On the fantasy outlook, keep an eye on Brandon Stokley. Peyton’s old buddy has become more relevant in the offensive scheme as the weeks have gone by, and I am sure he is going to have a big week.
DENVER 31 San Diego 20
Baltimore at PITTSBURGH
Both the Sunday night and Monday night games feature marquee match-ups, but I would say that this is the best game of the week. Other than a shellacking at the hands of the Houston Texans the Ravens have been nearly unbeatable, mixing up a formidable run attack with a fairly conservative pass offense. They have been lacking on defense, but nonetheless they have found ways to win games.
Pittsburgh is awaiting the return of Rashard Mendenhall to bolster their running game, but overall, their offense has been balanced and Big Ben has been unstoppable. Their defense has been great and has survived multiple injuries that could have crushed their season.
On paper, it seems like the Steelers will beat the Ravens by a good amount; however, I believe that it will be a close game. Look for whoever is starting at running back for the Steelers to cash in. The Ravens will be doing all they can to prevent Ben Roethlisberger from beating them and that will mean a lot of holes for the Steeler running backs.
PITTSBURGH 24 Baltimore 17
This week I hope I can improve upon what was a mediocre performance last week. I also hope that Bennett, aka The Brains, is looking to take me on once again in head to head pick’ems. He got lucky. Once.
Anyway, I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving, and whether going home or staying here, I hope everyone enjoys their break.
– By Jayson Patel